Makita 18V LXT XFD14Z Vs Dewalt 20V Max XR DCD805 Hammer Drill

Makita XFD14Z Angle 5

Makita XFD14Z

Quick take

The Dewalt 20V Max XR DCD805 Hammer Drill and Makita 18V LXT XFD14Z are flagship drills with powerful performance in the most demanding tasks. However, there are some key differences. The Dewalt DCD805 is a hammer drill that drills masonry faster and is lighter. It also has a more versatile work light. The XFD14Z doesn’t include a hammer drill but offers an auxiliary arm in the box, which helps reduce the risk of injury. Opt for the Makita 18V LXT XPH14Z Hammer Drill if you want a competing flagship with a hammer drill functionality.

Brand Makita
Platform 18V LXT
Motor Brushless
Speeds 2
Torque in-lbs 1250.0
BPM N/A
Clutch settings 21
Chuck size 1/2"
Same as XFD14
Brand Dewalt
Platform 20V Max XR
Motor Brushless
Speeds 2
Torque in-lbs Not advertised
BPM 34,000.0
Clutch settings 15
Chuck size 1/2"
Same as DCD805B

Editorial opinion

Rating

4.01 / 5 ⭐️’s

Methodology used: Heavy duty

Pros

  • Brushless motor
  • Fast drilling and driving speed
  • Long battery life
  • Includes an auxiliary arm
  • Build quality
  • Long warranty

Cons

  • No hammer drill mode
  • Heavy

Rating

4.25 / 5 ⭐️’s

Methodology used: Heavy duty

Pros

  • Impressive drilling and driving speed
  • Solid build quality
  • Versatile and configurable worklight
  • Includes a hammer drill mode
  • Brushless motor
  • Long warranty

Cons

  • Heavy and bulky
  • Loud noise output
  • No auxiliary arm included
  • No kickback control technology

Global rankings

18 models tested

TestResultRank
Drilling speed (sec.)14.36
Driving speed (sec.)8.46
Torque (in-lbs)1250.03
RPM1,958.05
Bare weight (lbs)3.5717
Drilling Noise (dBA)77.22
TestResultRank
Drilling speed (sec.)10.12
Driving speed (sec.)7.12
Torque (in-lbs)Not advertisedNot ranked
RPM2,038.04
Bare weight (lbs)3.0013
Drilling Noise (dBA)96.117

Kit and bare tool options

XFD14T

Includes (2) 18V 5Ah battery

Lab results

Design & ergonomics

Stands upright (no battery): Yes
Stands upright (w/ battery): Yes
Grip material: Rubber overgrip
Magnetic holder: No
Bit holder: No
Belt hook: Yes
Lanyard compatible: Yes

The XFD14Z has a slightly forward-leaning handle and upward-angled head that ensures the drill is in the proper flat orientation when held in a driving position. The added rubber grip overmold provides good shock absorption and gripping power.

An all-metal belt hook included in the box is also mountable on either side of the base. There is no dedicated onboard bit holder or magnetic plate to hold fasteners, though both can be bought from third parties and attached to the XFD14Z.

Design & ergonomics

Stands upright (no battery): Yes
Stands upright (w/ battery): Yes
Grip material: Rubber overgrip
Magnetic holder: No
Bit holder: No
Belt hook: Yes
Lanyard compatible: Yes

The DCD805 has a familiar forward-leaning handle to orient the drill on the appropriate flat plane when drilling. However, the head angle uniquely slopes down minimally. Most drills either have a flat or upward-sloping head angle. In practice, the DCD805’s downward head angle means the drill isn’t held flat when rolling your wrist forward, which some users do when drilling aggressively.

Nearly all Dewalt drills include the same rubber overmold grip design, including the DCD805. The rubberized grip provides necessary shock absorption and grip under load.

There are two accessory slots on the base of the DCD805. These slots accept the all-metal belt hook in the box, or you can add third-party features, such as a bit holder.

Weight

Makita XFD14Z On Scale

Bare weight (lbs): 3.57
Weight w/ 2Ah battery (lbs): 4.41
Weight w/ 4Ah battery (lbs): Not tested
Weight w/ 5Ah battery (lbs): 4.96

One downside of the XFD14Z is it’s a heavy drill at 3.57 lbs in its bare form. The robust weight led to more arm and hand fatigue during our testing than other models in our test fleet, especially noticeable during our driving and drilling speed tests.

We tested different battery configurations since the working weight can differ meaningfully from the bare weight. We recommend combining the XFD14Z with Makita’s 18V LXT 2Ah battery for as lightweight a setup as possible without restricting performance.

Or pair the XFD14Z with Makita’s 18V LXT 5Ah battery for a longer run time and improved drilling performance if weight is less of a concern.

Compare drill weight test results

Weight

Dewalt DCD805 Angle 7

Bare weight (lbs): 3.00
Weight w/ 2Ah battery (lbs): 3.80
Weight w/ 4Ah battery (lbs): Not tested
Weight w/ 5Ah battery (lbs): 4.42

The DCD805 is a heavy hammer drill, weighing 3.00 lbs in its bare form. You can comfortably hang it from a sturdy work belt by the belt hook. But it’s not light enough to comfortably drop in your jeans pocket for portability.

Many professionals will use this drill with a high Ah-capacity battery. When kitting it out with a 20V Max XR 5Ah battery, the setup weighs 4.42 lbs. We ran into several instances throughout testing where hand fatigue set in, which is expected in this brute force class.

To get sufficient performance in as lightweight a setup as possible, we recommend combining the DCD805 with Dewalt’s 20V Powerstack 1.7Ah battery, which weighs less, has a smaller footprint, and runs longer than Dewalt’s 20V Max 2Ah battery, a solid alternative for a svelte setup.

Compare drill weight test results

Footprint

Makita XFD14Z Footprint1
Makita XFD14Z Footprint2

Max height (in.): 9.500
Max width (in.): 3.125
Chuck to back length (in.): 7.000
Base length (in.): 4.500
Base width (in.): 3.125

The XFD14Z has a large footprint, like most flagship drills from competing brands. There’s no way with current technologies to achieve such powerful performance in a highly compact footprint.

Interestingly, the XFD14Z feels bulkier in hand than many models we’ve tested. But the bulky feel in hand has more to do with the weight and design than its dimensions. This drill has one of the shorter tip-to-tail lengths of the 18V models in our test fleet, helping it squeeze into tight areas and corners moderately well.

Compare drill footprint test results

Footprint

Dewalt DCD805 Footprint1
Dewalt DCD805 Footprint2

Max height (in.): 9.375
Max width (in.): 3.125
Chuck to back length (in.): 7.000
Base length (in.): 4.500
Base width (in.): 3.125

The DCD805 is moderately large when measured in many of its dimensions. To fit the hammering mechanism, the head is wider and longer than its non-hammer drill sister, the Dewalt 20V Max XR DCD800. The increased head size also adds length from tip to tail, though it’s not an overly tall hammer drill.

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Motor & BPM

Makita XFD14Z Drill Modes

Motor type: Brushless
Action modes: Drill only
Advertised blows per min. (speed 2): N/A
Advertised blows per min. (speed 1): N/A
Variable speed trigger: Yes
Kickback control technology: No
Trigger draw length (in.): 0.250

The XFD14Z is a flagship, though basic drill, evidenced partly by its motor features. There is only a single drill mode setting. You’ll need to jump to the Makita 18V LXT XPH14Z Hammer Drill or Makita 18V LXT XPH12Z Hammer Drill for improved drilling speed, especially important when drilling into cement or boring wide and deep holes.

Outside of the limited action modes, Makita made the obvious and correct call to include a brushless motor at this price point, improving its efficiency and longevity over brushed motors.

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Motor & BPM

Dewalt DCD805 Drill Modes

Motor type: Brushless
Action modes: Drill, hammer
Advertised blows per min. (speed 2): 34,000.0
Advertised blows per min. (speed 1): Not advertised
Variable speed trigger: Yes
Kickback control technology: No
Trigger draw length (in.): 0.250

There are two drilling action modes. The drill mode disengages the chuck for the highest torque output, which is ideal for boring big holes and driving lag bolts and structural fasteners.

The hammer drill mode operates in the same manner but adds in a hammer that impacts at a rate of 34,000.00 blows per minute, which is among the highest in our test fleet. We tested the hammer’s effectiveness in our drilling speed test below to understand the speed improvements offered.

One area for improvement is including some kickback control technology to enhance safety when since an auxiliary arm isn’t included. The Milwaukee M18 Fuel 2904-20 Hammer Drill includes kickback control technology.

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Clutch & speed settings

Makita XFD14Z Clutch & Speed

Speed settings: 2
Clutch settings: 21

The XFD14Z has a two-position gearbox and 21 clutch settings, which outnumbers the total clutch options available with most drills. Admittedly, 21 options is more than most people will need. Also, more clutch options don’t necessarily mean better. The XFD14Z’s torque can be more finely tuned for a given driving scenario than a drill with fewer clutch settings.

Compare drill clutch and speed settings

Clutch & speed settings

Dewalt DCD805 Clutch & Speed

Speed settings: 2
Clutch settings: 15

There is a standard two-speed gearbox and 15 clutch settings. The high and low settings can be run in any action mode and clutch setting. The DCD805 generates the maximum torque output in either of the drill modes in the low setting.

Compare drill clutch and speed settings

Chuck

Makita XFD14Z Chuck Closeup

Chuck size: 1/2″
Chuck sleeve material: Knurled metal

The XFD14Z has a fantastic all-metal ratcheting chuck that feels more premium than other drills. Some of the impressive build quality results from the knurled all-metal sleeve, making it a breeze to tighten and loosen the chuck.

Throughout our testing, we appreciated how well the XFD14Z ratchet mechanism and three jaws held onto bits without loosening inadvertently. This chuck is one of the best-designed, frustration-free chucks we’ve tested.

Chuck

Dewalt DCD805 Chuck Closeup

Chuck size: 1/2″
Chuck sleeve material: Knurled metal

The DCD805 is a flagship hammer drill, so we expected it to have a premium chuck. It did not disappoint. The all-metal chuck locked onto bits and didn’t inadvertently loosen at any point throughout our lab tests. The metal knurling on the chuck sleeve also provides the right amount of friction when ratcheting the chuck by hand, which is helpful for quickly and confidently inserting drill bits.

Auxiliary arm

Makita XFD14Z Auxiliary Arm

Auxiliary arm: Yes

The XFD14Z includes an auxiliary handle to control recoil and enhance stability during heavy-duty drilling tasks, improving user safety. The XFD14Z is a powerful drill, so it makes sense that an auxiliary arm is included.

The handle is easy to attach and remove just behind the chuck and is mountable on either the right or left side. There is also a depth stop included in the box that attaches to the auxiliary arm.

Auxiliary arm

Auxiliary arm: No

The DCD805 is a powerful drill that should include a detachable auxiliary arm in the box to improve user safety when the drill binds up. The Makita 18V LXT XPH14Z Hammer Drill and Milwaukee M18 Fuel 2904-20 Hammer Drill are powerful and include auxiliary arms.

Drilling speed

Drilling speed total time (drill mode, sec.): 14.3
Drilling speed average time (drill mode, sec.): 2.9
Drilling speed total time (hammer mode, sec.): N/A
Drilling speed average time (hammer mode, sec.): N/A
Hammer mode speed improvement: N/A

The XFD14Z shined in our drilling speed tests, snappily drilling through stacked lumber. Drilling in the high setting is particularly impressive. The XFD14Z has enough muscle to sustain high RPMs under load, quickly clearing chips from the hole to avoid binding up.

While not officially a data point we display on site, we tested the XFD14Z with several large spade and forstner bits to understand when dropping a gear to the low setting is needed for added torque. We found that the XFD14Z has a similarly powerful drilling profile as other flagships from Dewalt and Milwaukee.

Including a hammer drill mode would improve drilling speed in specific scenarios, such as rough-ins and drilling masonry.

Compare drilling speed test results

Drilling speed

Drilling speed total time (drill mode, sec.): 10.1
Drilling speed average time (drill mode, sec.): 2.0
Drilling speed total time (hammer mode, sec.): 7.2
Drilling speed average time (hammer mode, sec.): 1.4
Hammer mode speed improvement: 28.7%

The DCD805 is an impressively fast drill that sustains high RPMs under demanding drilling loads. The DCD805 completed our drilling speed test blazingly fast in 10.1 seconds in the standard drill mode.

The results are even rosier in the hammer drill mode, which brought the time down to 7.2 seconds to bore five 1/2-inch holes. That’s a speed improvement of 28.7%, which is high compared to other hammer drills in our test fleet.

We further tested drilling wider and narrower gauge holes using a mix of forstner and spade bits. The DCD805 finished most of these tests without needing to downshift a gear for additional torque, which is rare for models we’ve tested.

While the power output is impressive and fun to experience, the DCD805 is arguably overpowered for most homeowners, who don’t push tools to their limits and may be more prone to wrist injuries when not using it appropriately. Consider the Dewalt 20V Atomic DCD799 Hammer Drill if you want a more user-friendly drill for around the home.

Compare drilling speed test results

Driving speed

GRK total driving time forward (sec.): 8.4
GRK average driving time forward (sec.): 1.7
GRK total driving time reverse (sec.): 6.8
GRK average driving time reverse (sec.): 1.4

The XFD14Z performed similarly well in our driving speed tests, designed to understand how well a drill performs at the top of its range. The XFD14Z’s torque and RPM profile combination generated impressive driving speed. It rapidly finished five large GRK RSS screws in under the 10-seconds, matching the impressive performance of other high-end models.

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Driving speed

GRK total driving time forward (sec.): 7.1
GRK average driving time forward (sec.): 1.4
GRK total driving time reverse (sec.): 6.1
GRK average driving time reverse (sec.): 1.2

Unsurprisingly, the DCD805 is also incredibly fast driving big fasteners. It delivered one of the swiftest results in our Summer 2023 drill test fleet, finishing five GRK RSS 5 1/8-inch fasteners in only 7.1 seconds, not counting down time between each screw.

We further tested the DCD805 by driving several longer and wider gauge lag bolts into stacked 2x6s. We didn’t run into a scenario where we needed to drop to the low setting for added torque to finish the job, rare for most drills.

Compare driving speed test results

Torque

Advertised max torque (in-lbs): 1250.0
Advertised max torque (ft-lbs): 104.2

The XFD14Z generates an impressive amount of torque and powerfully finishes demanding drilling and driving tasks. Combined with its speed, the XFD14Z is strong enough to cause wrist injuries when binding and not properly bracing the drill. This performance explains why the XFD14Z includes an auxiliary arm in the box to reduce the likelihood of injury.

Note: We don’t currently test drill torque in-house, as we do for impact drivers using a torque meter. The torque commentary discussed here relies upon both advertised torque specifications provided by manufacturers and practical insights learned from performance in our various drilling and driving tests.

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Torque

Advertised max torque (in-lbs): Not advertised
Advertised max torque (ft-lbs): Not advertised

Dewalt no longer advertises the torque of its drills and we currently don’t test torque on a torque meter in-house, like we do for impact drivers.

Compare drill torque

Battery lineup

Makita 18V LXT Battery Lineup

Makita offers 2Ah, 3Ah, 4Ah, 5Ah, and 6Ah batteries on the 18V LXT platform. Upgrading to the higher Ah-capacity options increases battery run time and improves drilling performance, though we’ve not tested all of these batteries to understand the cost tradeoffs.

That said, buying at least two batteries is best so you don’t miss a beat when draining one battery. We recommend buying a Makita 18V LXT 2Ah and a Makita 18V LXT 5Ah battery for most LXT drill setups for a good balance of performance, price, and size.

Battery lineup

Dewalt 20V Max Battery Lineup

Dewalt offers 1.5Ah, 2Ah, 3Ah, 4Ah, 5Ah, 8Ah, 10Ah, and 12Ah batteries in its 20V Max lineup. Upgrading to the higher Ah options increases battery run time and improves drilling performance, though we’ve not tested all of these batteries to understand the cost tradeoffs.

Buying at least two batteries is best so you don’t miss a beat when draining one battery. We recommend purchasing a Dewalt 20V Max 2Ah and a Dewalt 20V Max XR 5Ah battery for most Dewalt 20V drill setups for a good balance of performance, price, and size.

Dewalt’s 20V Powerstack batteries may be a smart buying choice for some users. Dewalt advertises improved drilling performance, longer battery run time, and more battery cycles out of its 20V Powerstack 1.7Ah and 5Ah batteries than its standard 20V Max batteries. We plan on testing the performance differences to understand the cost tradeoffs.

Charging time

Makita XFD14Z Fuel Gauge

Charger tested: Makita LXT Rapid Optimum (DC18RC)
Charging time 2Ah battery (min.): 24.0
Charging time 4Ah battery (min.): Not tested
Charging time 5Ah battery (min.): 51.0
Charging time per Ah (min.): 11.1
Fuel gauge: On battery

The Rapid Optimum charger (DC18RC) included in most Makita kits charges batteries incredibly fast. Our tests found that this charger tops off 5Ah batteries in less time than it takes to charge smaller-capacity 2Ah batteries from other brands using their standard kit chargers.

Makita’s DC18RC charger only charges a single battery voltage. You’ll need a dedicated charger for your 12V and 18V Makita tools. Many Milwaukee drills and Dewalt drills come in kits with chargers that charge multiple voltage batteries in one, conveniently saving space in your shop if you have several tools on those platforms.

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Charging time

Dewalt DCD805 Fuel Gauge

Charger tested: Dewalt 20V Max (DCB115)
Charging time 2Ah battery (min.): 59.0
Charging time 4Ah battery (min.): Not tested
Charging time 5Ah battery (min.): 139.0
Charging time per Ah (min.): 28.7
Fuel gauge: On battery

One letdown is that the standard charger included in most Dewalt kits (model DCB115) charges batteries slowly compared to other manufacturers. In our testing, the DCB115 charged at a rate of 28.7 minutes per Ah. Several other brands charge at a rate of 20 minutes per Ah or lower.

However, this charger charges 12V and 20V Max platform batteries in one, conveniently saving shelf space in your shop if you have several tools in the Dewalt ecosystem.

Compare drill charging test results

RPM

Makita XFD14Z RPM Chart

Max RPM speed 2: 1,958.0
Max RPM speed 1: 503.0

One product design feature explaining the XFD14Z’s exceptional performance is its high RPM output, as measured in our testing. The RPMs ramp quickly to rapidly set screws and explain the snappy performance we experienced in demanding driving scenarios.

Dropping down a gear obviously limits the RPM output, which is comparatively higher than many 18V drills in our test fleet. Expect the high RPM in the low setting to finish more screw sizes and lengths faster and with more torque than lesser-equipped drills in the same low setting.

Compare drill RPM test results

RPM

Dewalt DCD805 RPM Chart

Max RPM speed 2: 2,038.0
Max RPM speed 1: 649.0

The DCD805’s drilling and driving speed performance directly relates to the high RPM output. In all the action modes and transmission settings, we tested the RPM performance with a contact tachometer in a no-load scenario.

While no-load RPM output doesn’t tell the whole story of how a drill performs under load, our speed testing results confirm that the DCD805 has the muscle to sustain RPMs at a higher rate than many hammer drills under load.

Compare drill RPM test results

Drilling clearance

Min. interior width clearance (in.): 8.625
Min. top edge clearance (in.): 1.500
Min. interior 45-deg. clearance (in.): 6.875

While the XFD14Z feels bulky in hand, this feeling isn’t a result of its dimensions and is more a result of the weight and relatively wide head, which don’t significantly determine how well it can fit into narrow spaces and tight corners.

The XFD14Z performed solidly for a powerful 18V drill in our clearance tests, partly due to its tip-to-tail footprint. The XFD14Z is 1/8 inch shorter than its hammer drill cousin, the XPH14Z.

The one test where the XFD14Z didn’t shine was our interior top-edge clearance test, primarily due to its bulky head. In practice, the XFD14Z can’t easily drill or drive under shelves, and in other scenarios where the top of the head is obstructed and you need to drill as close to the top edge as possible.

Compare drilling clearance test results

Drilling clearance

Min. interior width clearance (in.): 8.625
Min. top edge clearance (in.): 1.500
Min. interior 45-deg. clearance (in.): 6.875

The DCD805’s moderately large footprint didn’t help it shine in our clearance tests, designed to understand the obstructed spaces and tight areas each drill fits into. Notably, the moderately long tip-to-tail length and bulky head limit the spaces it fits into, including scenarios such as drilling under shelves and fitting into restricted corners.

Compare drilling clearance test results

Noise

Makita XFD14Z Noise Chart

Max no-load noise (dBA): 78.0
Max drilling noise (dBA): 77.2

The XFD14Z is one of the quietest 18V models we tested with a decibel meter under load, primarily a result of it not including a hammer drill mode. We test the max drilling noise under load. In this case, we measured the noise output in the drill mode, whereas in other models, we measured drilling noise in the hammer mode setting.

Compare drill noise test results

Noise

Dewalt DCD805

Max no-load noise (dBA): 84.7
Max drilling noise (dBA): 96.1

The DCD805 is one of our test fleet’s loudest drills under load. While the high hammering rate vastly improves drilling speed, it is also incredibly loud, generating 96.1 dBA of noise. This result rivals the noise output of powerful impact drivers, which are also harmful with prolonged exposure.

Compare drill noise test results

Light

Makita XFD14Z Light Wall
Makita XFD14Z Light Closeup

Light: Yes
Light location: Near trigger
Light positions: 1
Customizable light settings: None
Light count: Dual LED
Light active time (sec.): 15.0

There are no bells and whistles with the light and its features, only a dual LED array positioned above the trigger. Some flagship Dewalt drills include more versatile work lights with features such as spotlight modes and the ability to turn off the light when pulling the trigger.

Light

Dewalt DCD805 Light Wall
Dewalt DCD805 Light Closeup
Dewalt DCD805 Light Customization

Light: Yes
Light location: In base
Light positions: 3
Customizable light settings: Off, On, Spotlight
Light count: Single LED
Light active time (sec.): 20.0

We’re big fans of the DCD805’s worklight. The multi-position light does the essentials well and brightly illuminates the surface directly in front of the nose of the drill, whether using a short or long drill bit.

A switch behind the light can disable the light or enable Spotlight mode, which runs the light for 20 minutes and increases the brightness to an advertised 70 lumens.

App integration

App integration: No

There is no Bluetooth app integration to track drill usage and location, display tool diagnostics, and allow you to set custom profiles on your phone.

Dewalt’s ToolConnect-branded drills include an app integration, but you’ll only find the ToolConnect feature built natively into its flagship models. Milwaukee utilizes the same approach with its One Key lineup, which offers similar app features and is only available in flagship tools.

App integration

App integration: After-market add-on

There is no Bluetooth functionality built natively into the DCD805 to track drill usage and location, display tool diagnostics, and allow you to set custom profiles on your phone.

However, a slot in the base accepts Dewalt’s after-market ToolConnect chip, allowing you to add the same Bluetooth functionality without purchasing a specific ToolConnect version of a given tool.

Warranty

Tool warranty (years): 3
Battery warranty (years): 3

Makita stands behind the durability of its drills with exceptionally long warranties. The XFD14Z has a three-year warranty. Makita 18V LXT batteries include a three-year warranty.

Warranty

Tool warranty (years): 3
Battery warranty (years): 3

Dewalt stands behind the durability of its drills with exceptionally long warranties. The DCD805 has a three-year warranty. Dewalt’s 20V Max batteries include a three-year warranty.

Dewalt also offers free maintenance and replacement of worn parts for one year for the DCD805.

Nathan Hamilton
Nathan Hamilton
Nathan Hamilton is the founder of DIY Gear Reviews and a recognized expert in the home and DIY space. He has over 200 bylines covering topics such as power tools, hand tools, and woodworking. Nathan is the strategic director for DIY Gear Reviews, deciding everything from the content covered to designing the testing methodologies for lab-tested reviews. He can be emailed at nhamilton@diygearreviews.com.

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