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domino comparison
Festool Domino DF 500 and XL DF 700

Festool Domino Joiner Model Comparison:

DF 500 versus XL DF 700 - what are differences?

See the chart below for complete specifications

Festool is known for their highly innovative, comprehensive tool line, this means feature rich tools with options. Festool has two portable Mortiser Joiners - Festool Domino DF 500 and Festool Domino XL DF 700. Deciding between the two models can be confusing, but not when you understand the details. We've put together this buying guide to help you compare the important differences to make your decision easier. The major consideration is the size (depth and width) of the mortises you will be able to cut as it relates to the scale of the projects you intend to build. Additionally, we look at the cost and weight of the two models to help you decide which Domino Joiner model is best for you. If you still have questions after reading this guide, you can always ask one of our Festool experts via phone or email.

Floating Tenons

The Festool Domino cuts mortises for a floating tenon joint. The mortise and floating tenon is a traditional joint that secures two pieces of wood together. In this case we’ll call that tenon a domino. You can buy dominoes of various sizes to fit into the mortise or you can make your own in the shop.

Cutter Size
DF 500 Cutters

One of the biggest differences between the two Domino Joiner Models is the available cutter sizes that create the mortises.

The DF 500 can use the following cutters: 4mm, 5mm, 6mm, 8mm and 10mm

The XL DF 700 can use the following cutters: 8mm, 10mm, 12mm and 14mm

Note: The cutters are not interchangeable between the two tools. Even though they both have optional 8mm and 10mm sizes, they use different cutters

The cutters create the mortise, so the above sizes are the thickness of mortise that each machine can make (widths are variable). For a typical joint, the mortise should be about 1/3 of the thickness of the material. So, for 3/4 material that's generally an 8mm cutter.

Both the DF 500 and XL DF 700 can use 8mm and 10mm cutters, so these machines can both easily handle 3/4" and 1” material. The DF 500 is going to excel in thinner material for panels, drawer sides, smaller boxes, etc with its smaller cutters. The XL DF 700 will easily handle 8/4 or 12/4 material, slabs of wood, and joining thick pieces.

It's worth noting that the plunge mechanism on either Domino Joiner Model is very smooth. Even so on the XL DF 700, Festool's superior design makes cutting with a large spinning bit surprisingly smooth and accurate. So it’s easy to make repeatable, perfect cuts with both machines.

Domino Size

Domino Tenons can be purchased in exact width, thickness and length, making it very fast and efficient to make joints. The domino tenon will exactly match the thickness of cutter used to cut the mortise.

DF 500 Dominoes

The DF 500 works well with the following tenon sizes:

  • 10mm x 50mm
  • 8mm x 50mm
  • 8mm x 50mm
  • 6mm x 50mm
  • 5mm x 50mm
  • 4mm x 50mm

You can buy dominoes for the DF 500 individually or in an assorted systainer set.

DF 700 Dominoes

The XL DF 700 works well with the following tenon sizes:

  • 14mm x 140mm
  • 14mm x 100mm
  • 12mm x 140mm
  • 12mm x 100mm
  • 10mm x 100mm
  • 10mm x 80mm
  • 8mm x 100mm
  • 8mm x 80mm

You can buy dominoes for the XL DF 700 individually or in an assorted systainer set. In addition, you can purchase long tenon stock and custom cut it to length.

A typical application to consider is creating larger panels and table-tops from smaller widths of wood. When gluing those smaller pieces together, it's nice to align the edges using dominoes. This avoids having to use large cauls above and below the panel to align the surface. The Festool Domino excels at this task. The typical domino thickness for that application might be 5mm or 6mm - you don't need strength, just alignment. So the DF 500 is a perfect fit for this operation.

Depth of Cut

The depth of cut is how far the cutter goes into the wood and hence how far the tenon or domino goes into the mortise. The further the domino goes in, the more glue surface and more strength. The XL DF 700 can plunge much further than the DF 500 and with the use of thicker tenons can provide exceptionally strong joints in large material. See the chart below for complete specifications

Even though both tools can use 8mm and 10mm cutters, remember that the XL DF 700 will plunge in much further. However, in thicker material like 8/4 or 12/4, you can also stack the dominos to create a very strong joint. Creating multiple mortises and using multiple floating tenons across a single joint, provides a lot of glue surface. So, depending on your application, the DF 500 can still easily be used even in thicker materials.

Weight and Handling
Domino XL

We call the DF 700 the "big brother" of the 500 - with similar tool dimensions, just an inch longer and about 5 inches taller, their weight sets them apart. At 7 lbs, the DF 500 is much lighter than the 11.4 lbs XL DF 700, making it easy to move around the shop and small enough to hold one-handed while using or adjusting. The XL DF 700 is beefy, think "XL" for extra-large - you will feel the 4 additional pounds after lots of cuts. The XL DF 700 also comes with the SYS 5 systainer, versus the SYS 2, which is oversized for convenient storage and portability. While the 700 does require extra effort in maneuverability, the trade off is better purchase on the material as a result of its bigger fence and offset handle, plus the added weight makes it easier to hold steady from power on to plunge in most situations.

That's all great, but which Domino Model is right for me?

We believe that for the majority of shops, the Festool Domino DF 500 provides the best value due to its lower cost and robust capabilities. It can handle a wide range of projects from the very small boxes to household furniture: tables, chairs, chests, etc. If you typically deal in materials around 3/4 of inch from sheet goods to 4/4 and even 8/4 - the DF 500 is going to meet your needs.

The XL DF 700 meets a need in shops that handle large-scale furniture like conferences tables or applications where strength is critical (like chairs). Using large, deep floating tenons to join slabs of wood and other thick materials gives confidence that the project will be robust and last for years.

Comparing The Festool Domino DF 500 and XL DF 700

Watch the Video

Morton's video compares the differences:
DF 500 versus XL DF 700 Video.

  Domino DF 500 Domino XL DF 700
Model DF 500 Q XL DF 700
Available Domino Cutters 4, 5, 6, 8, 10 mm 8, 10, 12, 14 mm
Miters 0-90°

Stops at 22.5°, 45°, 67.5°
0-90°

Stops at 0°, 22.5°, 45°, 67.5°
Power Consumption 420 Watts 720 Watts
Weight 7.0 lbs. 11.4 lbs.
Maximum Mortising Stop Setting 12,15,20,25,28 mm
(5/8" to 1-3/32")
15-70 mm, 5 mm increments
(19/32" to 2-3/4")
Spindle Speed (RPM) 23,400 21,000
Fence Height Scale 5 - 30 mm
(13/64" to 1-3/16")
10 - 50 mm
(13/32" to 1-31/32")
Tool Dimensions 15.5" x 11.5" x 6.4"
16.5" x 11.5" x 11.5"
Included Cutter* 5 mm 12 mm
Plug-It Power Cord XX
Support Bracket XX
Wrench XX
Included Systainer T-LOC Systainer SYS 2 T-LOC Systainer SYS 5
Metric specifications are binding. Imperial measurements are approximate.

* Please note that cutters are not interchangeable between Domino models. Cutters are specific to the Domino DF 500 or Domino XL DF 700.

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