The smell of the bar oil, the big curly wood chips flying… Nothing beats a brand new chainsaw. But how do you know which one to choose? Both the Echo CS 490 and Husqvarna 450 models represent professional-grade saws, but deciding between them gets tough.
Almost any saw can work well for a little while when brand new, especially on smaller diameter trees. But for professionals who need a saw that can work all day, day after day, with minimal maintenance, a heavy-duty saw designed for performance and sustainability is key.
Both the Echo Cs 490 and Husqvarna 450 line of products sport high-quality engineering. In this article, we will tease out some of the critical differences in power, efficiency, maintenance, and more so you can make the best decision.
So read on! Echo Cs 490 vs. Husqvarna – which one is better?
A Quick Comparison of Echo CS 490 Chainsaw & Husqvarna 450 Chainsaw
Echo CS 490 vs. Husqvarna 450: Power Differences
A chainsaw’s power determines its ability to handle more heavy duty jobs. More power not only allows the saw to cut through a given log more quickly, but it decreases the stress compared to a less powerful saw attacking a comparable job.
In the long run, less stress on the engine means less maintenance and fewer performance issues in the middle of a project.
Echo CS 490
- Echo CS 490 has 50.2 cc 2-cycle engine
- 3500 RPM while idling, up to 11,600 at wide-open throttle (WOT)
- 3 horsepower
- Butterfly valve diaphragm carburetor without purge pump
- Husqvarna 450 has 50.2 cc 2-cycle engine
- 2700 RPM idling, up to 9,000 at wide-open throttle (WOT)
- 3.2 horsepower X Torq engine
- Butterfly valve diaphragm carburetor with purge pump
When it comes to power, we have to give the edge to the Husqvarna 450. While the Echo CS 490 gets the nod in terms of RPM, the Husqvarna 450 gets just a little more horsepower, and the X Torq engine manages a little better performance than Echo CS 490 even with a less vocal roar.
Echo CS 490 & Husqvarna 450: Efficiency
Efficiency goes beyond the simple “logs per gas tank” for a given chainsaw. Efficiency also refers to the ease of using the saw, especially for extensive projects or day after day engagement.
Fuel efficiency, tank size, and long-term comfort all factor into an “efficient” chainsaw.
Read our full review on Echo CS 490 here.
Echo CS 490
- Echo CS 490 has 16.6-ounce fuel capacity
- Available in 18, or 20-inch bar lengths
- G-force engine air pre-cleaner cleaning system
- Echo CS 490 weighs 10.6 pounds
- 15.2-ounce fuel capacity
- Available in 18, or 20-inch bar lengths
- X Torq engine for improved efficiency and reduced emissions
- Dry weight 12.8 pounds
- Ergonomic handle design
Here we give a slight edge to the Husqvarna 450. Both saws come with some form of technology allegedly making for a more comfortable pull. The Echo Cs 490 boasts the lightest dry weight of any chainsaw in its class and larger fuel capacity. Husqvarna 450 features a smartly designed rear handle with soft inlay, ergonomic trigger, and asymmetrical handle.
However, the Husqvarna 450 easy start tech allows it to start at a lower RPM. Additionally, the Husqvarna 450 has an “auto-stop start,” which is to say the start switch automatically goes to the starting position when the saw shuts off.
Both saws also have different forms of vibration-dampening technology to help with long term comfort. But, the Husqvarna 450 also comes with more ergonomic handles that dramatically increase the comfort over the course of hours or days. Which is significantly better than Echo CS 490 chainsaw.
Another great chainsaw you can check out: Poulan Pro Gas-Powered Anti-Vibration Chain Saw
Echo CS 490 & Husqvarna 450: Maintenance
No chainsaw comes without maintenance, and any good operator knows how to do at least some of it without a visit to the shop. But minor variations between models can dramatically simplify or complicate the maintenance process.
During operation, saws will need the bar oil to keep the bar and chain lubricated. Sometimes you may have to adjust the rate at which the saw applies the oil. You may need to tighten or loosen the chain.
After the fact, you may need to clean the filter. The model of the saw can significantly simplify or complicate these little details of chainsaw ownership and caretaking. Depending on your mechanical inclination, this can make a big difference in terms of maintenance bills.
Echo CS 490
- Automatic, adjustable clutch-driven oiler
- Echo CS 490 has tool-free access to the air filter
- Tool-free chain tensioning
- Automatic, adjustable oiler
- Tool-free access to spark plug
- Husqvarna 450 Air Injection lowers demand on air filter
On the maintenthe ance front, the Echo CS 490 beats out the Husqvarna 450. With tool-free access to the air filter, one of most basic requirements of chainsaw maintenance becomes greatly simplified. The clutch-driven oiler tends to have a longer lifespan than more traditional designs.
Additionally, the tool-free chain tensioning feature of Echo CS 490 makes a big difference, especially in hot weather, where chain stretching and shrinking requires continuous adjustment. This system keeps you from having to reach for the scrench to tighten the chain again and again.
Read another head-to-head comparison here : Husqvarna 240 Chainsaw Vs Stihl 170 Chainsaw
Echo CS 490 & Husqvarna 450: Safety
Using a chainsaw inherently comes with some significant risks. Not only can the tool itself do some severe damage, but the trees and limbs it removes often have lots of weight and unpredictable behavior.
All chainsaws come with a few standard safety features – spark arresters to prevent wildfires, chain brakes, and chain catchers to control a chain that falls off the bar. None of these features overcome the need for proper PPE – chaps, gloves, helmet, and ear protection.
However, Husqvarna 450 does have one significant advantage over the Echo CS 490 in the safety category. The Husqvarna 450 has an inertia-activated chain brake that stops the chain as soon as the saw meets an unexpected obstruction.
Typically, chain brakes require “manual” activation, which is not always an active process. When the brake handle gets pushed forward, the saw stops spinning. This feature works well when the saw kicks up since that usually forces the user’s wrist to engage the chain brake.
But with the inertia-activated brake, whenever a pinch or unexpected jolt greatly disrupts the spin of the teeth, the brake engages. By shutting down the chain, this technology keeps the saw from running when the chain cannot spin even if the brake handle isn’t engaged.
Long story short, the inertia-activated chain brake reduces unnecessary damage to the engine and bar, extending the saw’s longevity.
Another Husqvarna chainsaw worth checking: Husqvarna 440 18-inch Gas-powered Chainsaw
The Echo CS 490 and the Husqvarna 450 have very comparable specs in terms of their engine power and performance. Deciding which one to get comes down to the needs of the operator. For instance, consider the size of the bar.
The difference between an 18-inch bar and a 20-inch bar seems negligible, but if you plan to cut lots of large-diameter trees – even if you have to cut on two sides – another couple inches can make a big difference.
Consider also your own comfort level with chainsaw maintenance. Both Echo CS 490 & Husqvarna 450 saws make the basics relatively easy, but depending on how often you intend to use the saw, the little details like tool-free chain tensioning can make a big difference.
To understand the difference between chainsaw and reciprocating saw read this article.
Echo CS 490 & Husqvarna 450: Final Verdict
In a head-to-head, we gave the win to the Husqvarna 450. With its superior efficiency, safety, and power ratings, the Husqvarna 450 got the slightest of edges over the Echo CS 490.
Not to say the Echo Cs 490 does not have its advantages. For the novice user, the additional tool-free features make it a little simpler to adjust on the fly, and the considerable power of the engine does an excellent job on all but the biggest jobs.
But in the end, the Husqvarna 450 simply has the safety features, comfortable use, and overall efficiency to give it the edge. While both companies have been around for over 50 years, Husqvarna Chainsaws has become an industry staple, and the Husqvarna 450 chainsaw line shows precisely why.