Drill/Driver kits tend to offer exceptional value for money. Using the DeWalt DCD771C2 combo as an example, you get a 20V MAX drill/driver, battery, and charger in a great carrying bag for a really good price. Additional options exist, which include a bit set, and a variety of other useful 20V MAX cordless tools. This review is going to examine the DeWalt combo deal and a great value option from Black Decker.
I’m a huge fan of DeWalt combo kits. I think the tools are great and you get a lot of very practical extras to boot. If you calculate what you would have spent, buying these items individually, the savings are certainly enticing. When it comes to mass appeal, I think the DeWalt DCD771C2 drill/driver kit is the bomb. Everyone, from basic DIYers to contractors, will put every item in this kit to good use. It’s all we want at an incredibly reasonable price. I can clearly see why this is a number one best-seller on Amazon.
I’ve made no bones about my feelings regarding the DeWalt brand. It’s usually my top choice. Personally, I find their prices to be very reasonable. Then again, I prefer high-end power tools and am prepared to pay for the top power tool brands.
I know many homeowners don’t feel the same way. If you only use your tools occasionally, why spend top dollar on the very best? There are more affordable options that do just about the same job. They won’t always stand up to rigorous daily work, but if this is not what you require, that’s okay.
In the realm of affordable DIY tools, offering good quality at an incredible price, Black & Decker is the brand I generally recommend. If you’re looking for an affordable drill/drive kit for basic DIY jobs around the home, I reckon the Black & Decker 30-piece Drill/Driver kit is going to be your best bet.
This review is going to take a look at both. The extremely popular DeWalt DCD771C2 Drill Driver Kit and the Cheaper Black & Decker equivalent. Incidentally, the Black & Decker also features on the Amazon best-seller list for cordless power tools. Not as big as the DeWalt kit, when comparing market share, but pretty close.
Brand Comparison: DeWalt vs Black & Decker
Not everyone is aware that the DeWalt and Black & Decker brands both belong to the same group of companies; Stanley Black and Decker.
Since the formation of the DeWalt Products company, in 1924, the name has always been associated with innovative power tool design and technology. It started with the invention of the Wonder Worker, a multi-purpose radial arm saw, invented by Raymond DeWalt in 1922. For its time, this machine was (quite literally) the cutting edge of technology.
The DeWalt philosophy has been molded on the inventive nature of the original founder. Raymond DeWalt, a farm superintendent by trade, believed in engineering tools that made life easier for the tradesmen of his time. This remains true to this very day, engineering with purpose and function.
The DeWalt brand has gone on to become one of the most recognized power tool brands around the world. Professionals, who want the best in durability and working efficiency, rate DeWalt power tools as amongst the very best. Because many DeWalt power tools are not as expensive as some of the other premier brands, it is a favored choice for DIY tool buyers who want a level quality above that of the cheaper brands.
Black and Decker is another US brand with a proud and long legacy. Back in 1910, two aspiring entrepreneurs, S Duncan Black, and Alonzo G Decker founded a small machine shop in Baltimore. Their approach was practical and basic. The company started making simple machines for factory production lines. Amongst their early endeavors, was a machine for making bottle tops and a candy dipping machine.
The first invention that established Black & Decker as a major force in the power tool industry, was the 1916 patent of the pistol grip drill with a trigger switch. It was the first modern handheld power drill. Something that is now one of the most common power tools in everyday use.
In 2009, Black & Decker merged with Stanley (originally a British tool and equipment manufacturer since 1843) and DeWalt. The new company used only the names Stanley Black and Decker, despite DeWalt being the most prestigious of the three brands.
The group owns numerous industrial and power equipment brands. The most recognized tool brands would be Black and Decker, Craftsman, Stanley, and DeWalt. The first three brands have continued to be recognized as household quality brands, whereas DeWalt has been promoted as a more innovative, high-end brand.
For their respective market position, each of these brands are recognized for quality and good value. DeWalt is the more expensive brand, offering a higher level of sophisticated engineering and industrial-grade durability. Black & Decker is renowned for solid value, providing excellent domestic grade quality at more affordable prices.
Both Black & Decker, and DeWalt, have become top-sellers, probably the most popular power tool brands in the world. So it’s not so much about DeWalt vs Black & Decker – which is the better brand? The question is more about what are looking for in a power tool? Both brands lead the market in their objectives. Black & Decker, the homeowner’s choice; DeWalt, the best-seller for contractors, industrial shops, and the more demanding DIY tool user.
DeWalt DCD771C2 Drill/Driver Kit ǀ Full Review
- Compact, lightweight design fits into tight areas.
- A high-performance motor delivers 300 unit watts out (UWO) of power ability completing a wide range of applications.
- High-speed transmission delivers two speeds (0-450 & 1,500 rpm) for a range of fastening and drilling applications.
- 1/2″ single sleeve ratcheting chuck provides tight bit gripping strength.
- The ergonomic handle delivers comfort and control.
- Includes 20V MAX charger, 2 X 1.3AH compact 20V MAX Lithium-Ion batteries, and a tough carrying bag.
I would say the emphasis here is on the best value for money. The original 20V MAX cordless drill/driver is not as powerful, or as efficient, as the DeWalt 20V MAX XR tools. As a result, the 20V MAX drill/driver in the DCD771C2 is much cheaper.
When the DeWalt XR range was introduced, the original brushed 20V MAX cordless tools came down in price. This is good news for those who need a basic drill/driver for home use. It has been a longstanding favorite for contractors. Though many professionals are willing to pay extra for the 20V MAX XR brushless drill driver, for its improved abilities.
While the DCD771C drill may be second to the brushless DeWalt XR tools, it is a superior machine to the brushed tools from cheaper brands. With a 300 UWO power rating, it has way more power than the average drill/driver.
The 2-speed transmission used for DeWalt drills is fantastic. It is super tough and provides wonderful torque control; 0 – 450 RPM on the low setting, cranking up to 1,500 maximum RPM on the high setting. The clutch is also amazing and won’t start to slip over time, like so many cheaper drill/drivers.
The drill is super lightweight and compact. The included 1.3AH batteries hardly add any weight or bulk to the tool. Because you get two batteries with the tool, the low AH rating is actually an advantage, because they are hardly noticed when inserted into the tool. You can leave one battery on charge (the charger is also included), whilst using the other. You should be able to work continuously by swapping out the batteries, always placing one battery on charge whilst using the other.
Even the tough carrying bag is not just an add-on gimmick like we so often see with cheaper combo kits. This bag is designed for contractors on the move. Because it bears the DeWalt logo, you can be sure this bag is made to last.
What really catches my fancy, is the absolutely incredible price. This entire kit is just shy of $100. Where will get so much for under a hundred bucks? The fact that you’re getting a DeWalt product at this price is even more awesome. A cheap kit, with astounding value, from a top brand. That should excite any value-seeking tool enthusiast.
Black & Decker LD120VA Plus 30-piece Accessory Kit
- Cordless drill with Lithium-Ion Battery holds a charge up to 18 months.
- The 24 position clutch of this power drill prevents stripping and overdriving screws.
- Drill/driver with soft grip handle provides added comfort during use.
- Assortment of 30 accessories.
- Part of the 20V MAX System.
It’s been many years since I’ve bought a Black & Decker drill. Lets’ just say I’ve graduated to the big boys, like DeWalt, Makita, and Milwaukee.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not slamming Black & Decker with this remark. I’m an intrepid DIYer and have found that professional-grade power tools are better for a guy like me, who does more than the occasional project. If your tools are expected to work hard regularly, the more durable brands will last longer.
I remember my first Black & Decker drill well. It was a relentless little machine for quite a few years. If I’d used that drill as intended, it would probably still be with me today. Since I punished that poor drill, the way one would on a construction site, it didn’t make it. No one could have expected it to.
If you do basic DIY stuff around your home on weekends, I reckon the Black & Decker LD120VA won’t let you down. For a domestic grade cordless drill/driver, it’s definitely one of the best. The Black & Decker 20V MAX system doesn’t match up to DeWalt, in terms of power and efficiency. Again, I wouldn’t expect it to. The Black & Decker kit, which includes a great selection of drill and driver bits, costs almost half as much as the DeWalt DCD771C2 kit.
This kit is ideal for the guy who likes to keep on top of basic home maintenance. You can do all the normal projects that homeowners need to undertake. That would include more ambitious home DIY projects, like re-modeling your kitchen. The simple stuff, like assembling an IKEA kit or putting up shelves, will be an absolute breeze. Best of all, this fairly comprehensive kit doesn’t cost much more than $50.