Milwaukee M18 2607-20 Hammer Drill Vs Dewalt 20V Atomic DCD709 Hammer Drill

Milwaukee 2607-20 Angle 5

Milwaukee 2607-20

Quick take

The Milwaukee M18 2607-20 Hammer Drill and Dewalt 20V Atomic DCD709 Hammer Drill are comparable mid-range drills that are equally powerful under load. The Milwaukee 2607-20 is a fantastic option to get into the coveted Milwaukee ecosystem, and it has a better all-metal chuck. The primary advantages of the Dewalt DCD709 are its lighter weight and far shorter tip-to-tail length.

Brand Milwaukee
Platform M18
Motor Brushless
Speeds 2
Torque in-lbs 500.0
BPM 28,800.0
Clutch settings 18
Chuck size 1/2"
Same as N/A
Brand Dewalt
Platform 20V Atomic
Motor Brushless
Speeds 2
Torque in-lbs Not advertised
BPM 28,050.0
Clutch settings 15
Chuck size 1/2"
Same as DCD709B

Editorial opinion

Rating

4.21 / 5 ⭐️’s

Methodology used: Heavy duty

Pros

  • Exceptional drilling performance for the price
  • Includes a hammer drill mode
  • Brushless motor
  • Solid build quality

 

Cons

  • Extended length limits areas it can fit into
  • Hammer mechanism isn’t highly effective

Rating

4.00 / 5 ⭐️’s

Methodology used: Heavy duty

Pros

  • Compact and lightweight
  • Brushless motor
  • Includes a hammer drill functionality
  • Solid warranty

Cons

  • Plastic chuck sleeve isn’t as durable as metal
  • Moderately loud under load

Global rankings

18 models tested

TestResultRank
Drilling speed (sec.)16.09
Driving speed (sec.)13.111
Torque (in-lbs)500.08
RPM1,686.010
Bare weight (lbs)3.0314
Drilling Noise (dBA)97.318
TestResultRank
Drilling speed (sec.)15.98
Driving speed (sec.)12.19
Torque (in-lbs)Not advertisedNot ranked
RPM1,623.013
Bare weight (lbs)2.467
Drilling Noise (dBA)90.313

Kit and bare tool options

2607-22

Includes (2) M18 Red Lithium XC 3Ah battery

2607-22CT

Includes (2) M18 Red Lithium CP 1.5Ah battery

Lab results

Design & ergonomics

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

The 2607-20 leans slightly forward but doesn’t have an upward-sloping head that positions the drill in an aggressive stance when drilling. The combined angles help keep the drill flat when rotating your wrist slightly forward, as is common when setting up to bore a hole.

Otherwise, the grip is covered in a rubber overmold that improves shock absorption and gripping power. There is also no onboard bit holder or magnetic plate to hold fasteners, although both can be purchased from third parties and attached to the 2607-20.

A belt hook included in the box is mountable on both sides at the back of the base.

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 DCD709’s handle leans slightly forward for ergonomics when drilling. However, the combination of the handle lean and head slope isn’t as aggressive as other drills. The more aggressive the design, the easier it is to exert forward pressure with your hand and arm while keeping the drill in a flat plane.

There is a rubber overmold surrounding the grip, which provides necessary shock absorption and friction for gripping power.

An all-metal belt hook is included in the box and can be mounted on either side of the base. There is no onboard bit holder or magnetic place for fasteners, though both features are available aftermarket through third-party vendors.

Weight

Milwaukee 2607-20 On Scale

Bare weight (lbs): 3.03
Weight w/ 2Ah battery (lbs): 3.97
Weight w/ 4Ah battery (lbs): Not tested
Weight w/ 5Ah battery (lbs): 4.64

The 2607-20 is moderately heavy for an 18V drill, weighing in at 3.03 lbs in its bare form. Over longer and repetitive drilling sessions, expect minor muscle fatigue in your hand, wrist, and forearm.

We tested different battery configurations since the working weight can differ meaningfully from the bare tool weight. We recommend combining the 2607-20 with Milwaukee’s M18 Red Lithium CP 2Ah battery for as lightweight of a setup as possible without limiting performance meaningfully.

Pair the 2607-20 with Milwaukee’s M18 Red Lithium XC 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 DCD709 On Scale

Bare weight (lbs): 2.46
Weight w/ 2Ah battery (lbs): 3.26
Weight w/ 4Ah battery (lbs): Not tested
Weight w/ 5Ah battery (lbs): 3.88

The DCD709 is moderately lightweight for a drill and is exceptionally lightweight compared to other 18V hammer drills in our test fleet. In practice, we encountered fewer situations of muscle fatigue compared to other hammer drills, which are all bulky.

We tested different battery configurations since the working weight can differ meaningfully from the bare tool weight. We recommend combining the DCD709 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.

Pair the DCD709 with Dewalt’s 20V Max XR 5Ah battery for a longer run time and improved drilling performance if weight is less of a concern.

Compare drill weight test results

Footprint

Milwaukee 2607-20 Footprint1
Milwaukee 2607-20 Footprint2

Max height (in.): 8.875
Max width (in.): 3.125
Chuck to back length (in.): 7.750
Base length (in.): 4.625
Base width (in.): 3.125

The 2607-20 is moderately svelte when looking at its height with a battery and head width, helping it fit into some tight areas. However, the 2607-20 is incredibly long from tip to tail, with a significant portion of the chuck and head in front of the trigger.

The almost comically elongated nose section biases the weight at the front of the tool, causing it to not stand upright without a battery and leading to some hand fatigue when holding the drill flat.

Compare drill footprint test results

Footprint

Dewalt DCD709 Footprint1
Dewalt DCD709 Footprint2

Max height (in.): 9.125
Max width (in.): 3.125
Chuck to back length (in.): 6.875
Base length (in.): 4.500
Base width (in.): 3.125

One defining feature of the DCD709 is its size. Hammer drills almost always feel bulky and cast a big shadow. However, the DCD709 is moderately compact when measured across its dimensions. Notably, the tip-to-tail length is shorter than most competing hammer drills, helping it squeeze well into obstructed spaces.

The Dewalt 20V Atomic DCD799 Hammer Drill is worth considering for equivalent performance in a smaller footprint.

Compare drill footprint test results

Motor & BPM

Milwaukee 2607-20 Drill Modes

Motor type: Brushless
Action modes: Drill, hammer
Advertised blows per min. (speed 2): 28,800.0
Advertised blows per min. (speed 1): 7,200.0
Variable speed trigger: Yes
Kickback control technology: No
Trigger draw length (in.): 0.375

Impressively at this budget price point, the 2607-20 includes a brushless motor, improving the motor longevity and driving efficiency over brushed motors. Even as brushless motors have become commonplace, many drills in this price range still opt for a brushed motor to cut costs.

The brushless motor has three action modes. The driving mode engages the clutch to fine-tune the driving profile based on the torque needed.

The drill mode disengages the clutch for unfettered torque performance.

The hammer mode acts like the drill mode but layers in a hammering mechanism that generates 28,800.0 blows per minute in the high setting.

While the hammering functionality improves drilling speed, the comparatively low hammering rate doesn’t drastically improve speeds, as evidenced by our drilling speed tests below.

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Motor & BPM

Dewalt DCD709 Drill Modes

Motor type: Brushless
Action modes: Drill, hammer
Advertised blows per min. (speed 2): 28,050.0
Advertised blows per min. (speed 1): Not advertised
Variable speed trigger: Yes
Kickback control technology: No
Trigger draw length (in.): 0.250

The DCD709 includes a brushless motor, improving its durability and efficiency over dated brushed motors. There are two action modes that disengage the chuck for unfettered torque. The hammer drilling mode adds in 28,050.0 blows per minute (BPM), which is needed to efficiently drill masonry and thick lumber.

However, the hammering functionality wasn’t effective at improving speeds, as our drilling speed tests below highlight.

The DCD709 doesn’t include kickback control technology to reduce the risk of injuries when binding up.

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Clutch & speed settings

Milwaukee 2607-20 Clutch & Speed

Speed settings: 2
Clutch settings: 18

The 2607-20 includes a familiar two-speed gearbox to run the drill at a high or low RPM in any action mode. There are also 18 clutch options, which is modestly high. Whether the number of clutch settings is a pro or con depends on how you use the drill.

Access to more clutch settings allows you to drive screws with more precision, albeit most people don’t use the full clutch settings available.

Compare drill clutch and speed settings

Clutch & speed settings

Dewalt DCD709 Clutch & Speed

Speed settings: 2
Clutch settings: 15

The DCD709 has a familiar two-speed gearbox that runs the drill at the high or low speed in all of the 15 clutch settings and action modes. The highest torque output is achieved in the low setting in drill mode, like all drills.

Compare drill clutch and speed settings

Chuck

Milwaukee 2607-20 Chuck Closeup

Chuck size: 1/2″
Chuck sleeve material: Metal

Impressive for this price point, the 2607-20 includes an all-metal chuck sleeve. Many competing models choose plastic instead. Opting for metal makes the drill feel more premium and improves durability.

Throughout testing, we were also impressed with how well the three-jaw chuck locked onto bits and retained them when frequently switching between forward and reverse during regular testing. Some other hammer drills inadvertently loosen the chuck when releasing the trigger and switching between forward and reverse without holding the chuck.

Chuck

Dewalt DCD709 Chuck Closeup

Chuck size: 1/2″
Chuck sleeve material: Plastic

While the chuck sleeve is made from plastic and metal is better for durability, the DCD709’s ratcheting chuck works well. The three jaws lock onto drill bits and didn’t loosen with usage during our tests.

Auxiliary arm

Auxiliary arm: No

The 2607-20 doesn’t include an auxiliary handle to control recoil and enhance stability during heavy-duty drilling tasks. But we don’t see this as a downside. The 2607-20 isn’t designed to tackle the heaviest-duty drilling tasks, such as drilling wide and deep holes in masonry or wood, where an auxiliary handle is helpful.

We’d see not including an auxiliary arm as a downside if it had more muscle.

Auxiliary arm

Auxiliary arm: No

The DCD709 doesn’t include an auxiliary handle to control recoil and enhance stability during heavy-duty drilling tasks. Since the DCD709 is a moderately powerful drill, including an auxiliary arm could improve user safety in demanding jobs.

Check out the Milwaukee M18 Fuel 2904-20 Hammer Drill or Makita 18V LXT XPH14Z Hammer Drill if you want a more powerful drill with an auxiliary arm.

Drilling speed

Drilling speed total time (drill mode, sec.): 16.0
Drilling speed average time (drill mode, sec.): 3.2
Drilling speed total time (hammer mode, sec.): 15.3
Drilling speed average time (hammer mode, sec.): 3.1
Hammer mode speed improvement: 4.4%

The 2607-20 has fantastic drilling performance when put up against similarly-priced budget models in and outside of the Milwaukee 18V lineup.

We designed our drilling speed tests to understand how each drill performs at the top of its range. The 2607-20 is one of the fastest and smoothest hammer drills in our low to mid-range price test fleet.

It’s not fast enough to blast chips out when boring holes like a flagship drill. But it did smoothly and quickly complete our drilling speed test without binding up and easily cleared chips from the hole.

Not as impressive, the hammer drill functionality doesn’t improve speed much. We expect a highly capable hammer functionality to improve speeds by 20.0% or more over the standard drill mode.

The 2607-20’s hammer functionality only improved drilling speeds by 4.4%. A higher hammering rate and more power would improve the speed when drilling into masonry and thicker lumber. We’d consider the unimpressive hammering performance more of a downside if the 2607-20 didn’t quickly bore big holes, which isn’t the case.

Compare drilling speed test results

Drilling speed

Drilling speed total time (drill mode, sec.): 15.9
Drilling speed average time (drill mode, sec.): 3.2
Drilling speed total time (hammer mode, sec.): 15.0
Drilling speed average time (hammer mode, sec.): 3.0
Hammer mode speed improvement: 5.7%

Dewalt did a solid job packing sufficient performance into a compact footprint. The DCD709 turned in good results in our drilling speed test, which is designed to understand each drill’s limits.

Critically, it sustained high enough RPMs under load to easily clear chips from the hole and avoid bogging down. However, it doesn’t have enough muscle to be considered a professional-grade hammer drill. Upgrade to the Dewalt 20V Max XR DCD805 Hammer Drill for flagship drilling performance.

We were underwhelmed by the hammer drill functionality in our testing. The hammer drill improved drilling speeds by only 5.7%. Other more effective hammer drills improve speed by upwards of 20.0%.

Compare drilling speed test results

Driving speed

GRK total driving time forward (sec.): 13.1
GRK average driving time forward (sec.): 2.6
GRK total driving time reverse (sec.): 9.6
GRK average driving time reverse (sec.): 1.9

The 2607-20 won’t win any driving speed contests when driving big lag bolts and other structural screws. You need to open up more of your wallet to secure that crown. But the 2607-20 is more than capable of driving long lag bolts in the high setting, as seen in our video above.

Context is important when reviewing our driving speed test. There isn’t a massive time difference between the fastest drills and those finishing in the middle of the pack. For example, middle-of-the-test pack models like the 2607-20 averaged roughly 2.5 seconds per GRK RSS screw. The fastest, highest-end drills were around 1.5 seconds on average.

There’s no denying how satisfying it is to quickly finish a screw with brute force driving power. However, the time savings of roughly one second per screw isn’t a game changer for most people considering this hammer drill.

Compare driving speed test results

Driving speed

GRK total driving time forward (sec.): 12.1
GRK average driving time forward (sec.): 2.4
GRK total driving time reverse (sec.): 10.4
GRK average driving time reverse (sec.): 2.1

The DCD709 was reasonably fast in our driving speed test. Again, it doesn’t offer flagship speeds that are needed on the job site. Still, it finished driving 5 1/8-inch GRK RSS fasteners without bogging down or needing to drop a gear to the low setting for improved torque output.

Compare driving speed test results

Torque

Advertised max torque (in-lbs): 500.0
Advertised max torque (ft-lbs): 41.7

While 500.0 in-lbs of advertised torque won’t secure a podium position for the highest torque output, it beats most drills we’ve tested around the same price point. This data point further evidences why it’s one of the best budget drills around, with unmatched build quality and performance in its category.

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

Milwaukee M18 Battery Lineup

Milwaukee offers 1.5Ah, 2Ah, 3Ah, 4Ah, 5Ah, 6Ah, 8Ah, and 12Ah batteries on the M18 platform. 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 buying a Milwaukee M18 Red Lithium CP 2Ah and a Milwaukee M18 Red Lithium XC 5Ah battery for most M18 drill setups for a good performance, price, and size balance.

 

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 buying 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

Milwaukee 2607-20 Fuel Gauge

Charger tested: Milwaukee M12 & M18 Multi-Volt (48-59-1812)
Charging time 2Ah battery (min.): 41.0
Charging time 4Ah battery (min.): Not tested
Charging time 5Ah battery (min.): 98.0
Charging time per Ah (min.): 20.1
Fuel gauge: On battery

The Milwaukee M12 and M18 multi-volt charger (model 48-59-1812) included in most kits is reasonably fast at charging batteries, including to beat out team red’s most frequent adversary, Dewalt. It takes 41 minutes to charge an M18 2Ah battery and 98 minutes for a 5Ah battery, or approximately 20 minutes per amp-hour.

Milwaukee’s 48-59-1812 charger charges multiple battery voltages in one, conveniently saving space in your shop if you have several M12 and M18 ecosystem tools.

Compare drill charging test results

Charging time

Dewalt DCD709 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

The Dewalt charger that is standard in most kits (model DCB115) isn’t as fast as chargers from other brands. In our tests, it took 59.0 minutes to top off a Max 2Ah battery and 139.0 minutes to charge a Max XR 5Ah battery. Expect that this charger will charge batteries at approximately 28.7 minutes per Ah. Faster chargers charge batteries at 20.0 or fewer minutes per Ah.

Nicely, the DCD112 works with Dewalt’s 12V and 20V platform batteries, conveniently saving space in your shop if you have several tools in the Dewalt ecosystem.

Compare drill charging test results

RPM

Milwaukee 2607-20 RPM Chart

Max RPM speed 2: 1,686.0
Max RPM speed 1: 429.0

One downside is that the 2607-20 isn’t a high RPM hammer drill. Its RPM output in the high setting is average, whereas the RPM in the low setting falls near the bottom of the pack.

As a result, in practice, the 2607-20 doesn’t set screws quickly, leading to occasionally fumbling the screw before the tip grabs the work material. This drill will also drive and drill more slowly than most in the low setting, albeit the torque increases.

Compare drill RPM test results

RPM

Dewalt DCD709 RPM Chart

Max RPM speed 2: 1,623.0
Max RPM speed 1: 430.0

The DCD709’s RPM output doesn’t match the speed offered with more powerful drills, partly explaining its performance in our drilling and driving speed tests.

We also measured the RPM output with a contact tachometer in the low setting to understand the speed capabilities when torque matters more than RPMs. In the low setting, the DCD709 is slower than many models in our test fleet. In practice, expect that the DCD709 will have enough torque to finish demanding drilling jobs, but it will do so more slowly.

Compare drill RPM test results

Drilling clearance

Min. interior width clearance (in.): 9.375
Min. top edge clearance (in.): 1.375
Min. interior 45-deg. clearance (in.): 7.750

If you frequently drill flatly between two vertical boards, then the 2607-20 isn’t the drill of choice. The extremely long tip-to-tail length limits the spaces it can fit into without operating the drill at awkward angles.

Compare drilling clearance test results

Drilling clearance

Min. interior width clearance (in.): 8.500
Min. top edge clearance (in.): 1.375
Min. interior 45-deg. clearance (in.): 6.500

Dewalt’s Atomic tools are designed to be compact and agile, so we entered the drilling clearance tests with high hopes for the DCD709.

It performed exceptionally well for an 18V hammer drill. Notably, the tip-to-tail length is shorter than most competing models in our test fleet, helping it fit into tight corners and between two vertical boards.

Compare drilling clearance test results

Noise

Milwaukee 2607-20 Noise Chart

Max no-load noise (dBA): 82.2
Max drilling noise (dBA): 97.3

In hammer drilling mode, the 2607-20 is loud under load. The hammering mechanism is significantly louder than most hammer drills, rivaling the noise output of the best impact drivers.

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Noise

Dewalt DCD709 Noise Chart

Max no-load noise (dBA): 80.0
Max drilling noise (dBA): 90.3

The DCD709 is loud, just like all hammer drills under load when impacting. It generated 90.3 dBA during our drilling load tests with the hammer mode engaged. This level of noise output rivals the noise that impact drivers generate, and can be harmful with prolonged exposure.

Compare drill noise test results

Light

Milwaukee 2607-20 Light Wall
Milwaukee 2607-20 Light Closeup

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

The 2607-20 has a no-frills light that gets the job done. The single LED bulb is bright. But the extended nose of the tool creates shadows on the drilled surface, limiting its utility as a flashlight or spotlight in a pinch.

There are also no advanced features, like a spotlight mode or the ability to disable the light, like some Dewalt drills.

Light

Dewalt DCD709 Light Wall
Dewalt DCD709 Light Closeup

Light: Yes
Light location: In base
Light positions: 1
Customizable light settings: None
Light count: Single LED
Light active time (sec.): 20.0

The DCD709’s in-base light sufficiently lights the intended drilling area but isn’t the design we prefer. Light’s located near the trigger that shine directly forward more accurately illuminate the intended work surface. Admittedly, we’re splitting hairs here and the light location isn’t critical. Sufficient is good enough for 95% of the time.

There are no advanced features otherwise. Some of the best Dewalt drills include an in-base light that can be positioned in three settings and has advanced features, such as a spotlight mode and the ability to turn off the light when pulling the trigger.

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: 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 or as an after-market add-on that slips into the base. You can’t add the after-market ToolConnect chip to the DCD709.

Milwaukee utilizes a similar approach with its One Key lineup, which offers diagnostics and app features that are only available in its flagship tools.

Warranty

Tool warranty (years): 2-3 (depends on model)
Battery warranty (years): 5

Milwaukee stands behind the durability of its drills with exceptionally long warranties. The 2607-20 has a five-year warranty, which is among the longest offered by any manufacturer. Milwaukee’s M18 Li-Ion batteries have two or three-year warranties, depending on the specific model.

Warranty

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

Dewalt stands behind the durability of its drills with exceptionally long warranties. The DCD709 has a three-year warranty. Dewalt’s 20V Max batteries include a three-year warranty as well.

 

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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