Photo: Don Penny / Time Inc. Digital Studio
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DeWalt DWP611

About $150, 4.1 pounds;

An ingenious spiral groove threads the motor housing through the base in precisely controlled increments when you twist the black ring. The result: spot-on depth adjustments. We also love how the silky motor purrs to life when you hit the sealed on/off switch. The aluminum base's textured surface makes for a comfy grip; the large, LED-flooded opening makes it easy to monitor your progress; and a pronounced lip keeps fingers from creeping toward the bit. Profiling edges is easy with the included offset base plate, but, unfortunately, you'll need your own straightedge for interior routing—there's no fence. Bonus: The tool is also available in a $250 kit with a plunge base, which lets you start and stop routs anywhere on a workpiece.

Fine print: 1¼ hp, 7 amps, 16,000-27,000 rpm, 9 11/16-inch-circumference grip, 1½-inch depth range.
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