In regard to the popular Ryobi versus Makita power tool comparison, there’s really one main factor to think about.

Our Pick
Makita 18V Lithium-Ion LXT (XT335S)
Makita 18V Brushless Combo (CX200RB)
Runner Up
Ryobi ONE+ 18V (P882)
Makita XT335S 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 3-Pc. Combo Kit (3.0Ah)
Makita CX200RB 18V LXT® Lithium-Ion Sub-Compact Brushless Cordless 2-Pc. Combo Kit (2.0Ah)
Ryobi P882 One+ 18v Lithium-Ion Drill and Impact Driver Kit
Our Pick
Makita 18V Lithium-Ion LXT (XT335S)
Makita XT335S 18V LXT Lithium-Ion Brushless Cordless 3-Pc. Combo Kit (3.0Ah)
Best Pricing
Makita 18V Brushless Combo (CX200RB)
Makita CX200RB 18V LXT® Lithium-Ion Sub-Compact Brushless Cordless 2-Pc. Combo Kit (2.0Ah)
Best Pricing
Runner Up
Ryobi ONE+ 18V (P882)
Ryobi P882 One+ 18v Lithium-Ion Drill and Impact Driver Kit
Best Pricing

Is it worth saving a few bucks and getting Ryobi, or is it better in the long haul to invest the extra money and go for Makita’s quality?

Makita makes better tools in terms of efficiency and quality: better design, more reliability, robustness, and extended battery life. Simply put, everything is better.

In comparison, it’s difficult to overlook the fact that choosing Ryobi usually saves you quite a bit of money. Which, we should mention, is a brand that has released some remarkably high-quality tools in recent years.

In this post, we’ll help you determine which is a suitable choice for your particular DIY goals.

Do you need Makita’s professional and quality performance, or can you manage with Ryobi’s budget performance, as thousands of DIYers do?

We’ll compare ratings, price differences, and the main aspects of each brand’s power tools, so keep reading to find out the verdict.

Brief Overview: Ryobi versus Makita

Not surprisingly, many consumers today base their purchases and commitment to a brand on manufacturing policies.

It seems that people are becoming increasingly frustrated with seeing the overseas label on the package of whatever they’re purchasing. They equate it with an overall lack of quality.

Although this might be true in many scenarios, Ryobi is one of the few “budget” options that can compete in terms of, construction quality, durability, and even performance. Unfortunately, we can’t say the same for labels like Black & Decker, Craftsman, and Kobalt these days.

Ryobi is a subsidiary of Techtronic Industries, a large multinational conglomerate, and indeed, the majority of its products are made in China.

That being said, they’ve been the frontrunners in the budget tool options since Craftsman’s decline began many years ago.

As a matter of fact, Ryobi is operated by the same holding company as Milwaukee. Many of their tools are made in the same factories, and it is well known that Milwaukee tools are of the highest quality.

At the same time, Makita is completely their own business, as they are not owned by any larger corporation.

Although they do benefit from outsourcing production to reduce manufacturing costs, quality control has never been a problem for them. They are always on the cutting edge of performance and reliability.

Ryobi versus Makita Tool Comparison

So, now that we have covered some ground, let’s compare the actual tools.

In terms of power tools, the multiple-tool combination kits provide the most value for money. This is the case where budget choices like Ryobi will save you a lot of money.

However, if you just need a circular saw or drill, the price difference between a Ryobi vs Makita is often less significant to rationalize the Ryobi’s cost savings over the Makita’s efficiency and reliability.

For example, look at cordless drill combination sets. For just slightly more than Ryobi’s new 18V brushless hammer drill, you can get Makita’s brand new sub-compact 18V cordless drill/ impact driver combination – 2 of the top-rated tools out there besides Milwaukee’s Fuel.

To get more insight into what we’re talking about, take a look at the reviews below.

Ryobi versus Makita Cordless Drill/ Impact Driver Combos

Makita 18V Lithium-Ion LXT Cordless Combo Kit (XT335S)

Pretty much the same as the sub-compact combination kit. But instead of the more powerful brushless motor, these use the original “brushed” motor. For more information on the practical differences between brushless vs brushed electric motors, see our article here.

The Li-Ion LXT line of tools is one of the most powerful battery configurations on the market. This has been the case for over a decade.

When you combine that with Makita’s great engineering, design, and efficiency, you have a clear winner. This works at a price segment that’s only slightly higher than the Ryobi toolset, which we’ll cover later.

Makita 18V Brushless Sub-Compact Cordless Drill/ Impact Driver Combo (CX200RB)

Makita’s new sub-compact 18V brushless cordless tool line is one of the top overall prices we’ve seen in a long time in the power tool industry.

The tools may be second only to Milwaukee’s cordless Fuel tool in terms of efficiency.  But there’s no comparison in terms of price – the Milwaukee tool kit is priced more than 30% higher.

The Makita brushless sub-compact line of tools has been prevalent in contractor job sites all over the country since its inception many years ago.

You’ll see them more than Hitachi, Bosch, DeWalt, and even Milwaukee, considering the significant price difference between the tools.

This 2-tool collection is undoubtedly one of the best deals in the tool industry today.

Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless Drill/ Impact Driver Combo (P882)

This is Ryobi’s regular 1/2″ brushed cordless drill/ impact driver combination. It provides decent value and is adequate enough in terms of efficiency.

However, for only a few extra dollars you can purchase the Makita drill/ impact combination kit having the LXT battery.

So, as we previously said, saving the extra money isn’t really worthwhile when you are able to have a much better-quality product.

The Bottom Line: Makita is going to be the better value for individual tools or cordless drill/ impact driver combination kits. Perhaps, Ryobi is a little less expensive, but not significant enough to justify foregoing Makita’s performance, reliability, and reputation.

In terms of warranty, both companies offer a three-year limited warranty on all tools. This is another point for choosing Makita instead of Ryobi if you just need an individual tool or a drill combination.

The real savings and value of Ryobi are realized when you start looking at the multi-tool combination kits, as we’ll see soon.

Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless Hammer Drill Power Tool Kit (P1813)

We haven’t had the opportunity to check out Ryobi’s latest cordless hammer drill yet. But based on the price (which is barely less than Makita’s) and general performance rating from customer feedback, we can’t imagine how it could match Makita’s value.

Also, Ryobi doesn’t have a brushless impact driver. For a bit more than the cost of their hammer drill, you can buy a Makita impact/drill combination kit with the iconic LXT Lithium-Ion battery configuration. That should be a straightforward choice.

Ryobi versus Makita Multi-Tool Combination Kits

As we mentioned before, Ryobi’s 4, 5, and 6-tool combination kits are where you are able to really save money.

Bear in mind that these power tools aren’t similar in terms of performance. Makita is by far the superior tool on every level.

There’s no comparison in terms of materials, construction quality, power, longevity/durability, battery life, and performance.

That isn’t to suggest that Ryobi is a poor buy. As a matter of fact, we know a lot of people who have been using Ryobi combination kits for years and haven’t had any issues with them.

You’ll only find a difference in performance between Makita vs. Ryobi if you’re using the tools for extended time periods (6 hours or more per day). Also, this is the case if you’re putting them through rough usage by working on heavy-duty materials.

For instance, you would be frustrated if you tried to drill a 3/8” hole in a block of 1/2” steel with Ryobi’s 18V cordless tool. Similarly, ripping long chunks of 2x4s or plywood with a Ryobi cordless circular saw would be difficult.

This is when a higher-quality product, such as Makita, can come in handy. But it would be better to use corded tools rather than cordless ones for those kinds of jobs.

To summarise, if you’re looking for a collection of power tools to keep in your house for simple, light work, Ryobi will suffice. If you’re going to be working extended hours or doing heavy-duty work, you would be better off spending more and getting a Makita.

Makita 18V Brushless Li-Ion Combo 6-Piece Set (XT611PT)

Simply put, this is a fantastic power tool combination kit.

This package includes all of the same equipment as the LXT 18V kit above, but it also includes Makita’s new brushless motor, which is powerful.

Brushless motors aren’t just a marketing ploy. They certainly do improve motor efficiency, battery life (around 50 percent more according to Makita), and performance.

The only downside is that the brushless motors are significantly more expensive than their ‘brushed’ cousins. If you would like to get your hands on this completely pro-quality package, make sure to budget for that.

Oh, and this package comes with 5-AMP batteries instead of 3-AMP ones. So, you’ll be able to use the tools for a number of days before having to recharge them.

Makita 18V Li-Ion Cordless Combo 6-Piece Package (XT610)

Makita’s iconic 18V cordless LXT platform is now available in a six-tool combination kit. What do we have to say about this tool? The efficiency and quality of the tools are top-notch. The only question is if you believe you’ll get enough value for money from the kit.

If you’re looking to purchase a cordless kit, the Makita lineup is a better option compared to the Ryobi if:

  • You’ll use the tool for at least the next 10 years (or more)
  • You have a good garage space
  • You’ll be using them enough

If you’re a serious DIYer, the 18V LXT platform’s power, comfort, and efficiency are something you would appreciate.

The 6-tool kit includes:

  • 6 1/2” circular saw
  • Impact driver
  • Hammer drill
  • 4 1/2” cut-off wheel/ angle grinder (a fantastic multi-purpose tool)
  • Reciprocating saw
  • Portable LED work light
  • Two 3-Amp LXT 18V batteries (with charger)

Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless 6-piece Combo (P884)

All the components from the 4-tool combo, plus:

  • Very handy multi-purpose tool
  • 1/4″ impact driver

These are both valuable tools that you can certainly make use of.

The same 18V battery setup and charger are included.

Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless 4-tool Combo (P883)

If you’re not a DIY enthusiast who plans to do a lot of work or put the tools through the wringer, this 4-tool cordless kit is a great option.

It includes:

  • Regular 1/2″ drill
  • reciprocating saw
  • 6 1/2″ circular saw
  • LED portable work light
  • Two 18V batteries (with charger)

These are all the tools that you’ll need for light, basic work around the house. They also come at an astounding price.

Not to be mistaken; these aren’t flimsy tools by any means. There are people who have been using the Ryobi ONE+ 18V platform for over a decade without having had any problems with it. And that’s also considering how much time some of them spend in their garage.

4 Best Ryobi Tools

  1. Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless Drill/ Impact Driver Combo (P882)
  2. Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless Hammer Drill Power Tool Kit (P1813)
  3. Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless 6-piece Combo (P884)
  4. Ryobi ONE+ 18V Cordless 4-tool Combo (P883)

4 Best Makita Tools

  1. Makita 18V Lithium-Ion LXT Cordless Combo Kit (XT335S)
  2. Makita 18V Brushless Sub-Compact Cordless Drill/ Impact Driver Combo (CX200RB)
  3. Makita 18V Brushless Li-Ion Combo 6-Piece Set (XT611PT)
  4. Makita 18V Li-Ion Cordless Combo 6-Piece Package (XT610)


We’ll say it again, though we’ve already mentioned it a number of times.

The Ryobi combos are hard to pass up at their price point unless you are

  • going to use your cordless tools a lot
  • planning to do some heavy-duty work with a big remodel project
  • using them for 6 or more hours a day

Not to mention that they’re actually good quality tools with the same warranty terms as Makita.

So, what’s the last word on the Ryobi versus Makita debate? Who makes better tools?

We can’t stress enough how great of a deal a Ryobi 4 or 6-tool combination kit can be. You can save a lot of money by choosing them over Makita if you hold reasonable expectations of what the power tools are made for (light, regular DIY work).

Oh, and if you don’t want to get one of the full-blown 4 or 6-piece sets, you do have a few more choices in terms of combination tool kits.

For instance, Ryobi has a circular saw/cordless drill combo with a charger and battery. These are in fact the two most common/used power tools today.

Also available as a 3-piece tool kit is Makita’s best-value (cheapest) combo pack, which includes:

  • Cordless drill
  • Impact driver
  • Reciprocating saw

 These are all powered by Makita’s iconic LXT 18V battery system.

At the same time, if you just need a cordless drill or an impact driver/drill combo, there isn’t enough of a cost difference between Ryobi vs. Makita to justify skipping out on Makita’s performance.

Spend a few extra bucks and get yourself the better drill (ideally, the new sub-compact brushless combo).

By Robin M

Robin remains an active participant in the skilled trades community. His hands-on involvement in projects, coupled with a genuine enthusiasm for helping others succeed in their home improvement pursuits, reflects his commitment to empowering readers with the knowledge they need to tackle projects confidently.

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