Hitachi vs. NuMax Finish Nailer

A finish nailer makes quick work out of fastening delicate pieces like decorating trim. With one of these guns in your shop, you don’t need to risk breaking or splitting thin boards by whacking a nail with a hammer. Instead, you simply aim the nozzle where you’d like the nail to be inserted, pull the trigger, and watch as it sinks flush into the surface of the workpiece without leaving a mark.

Hitachi NT65M2S 16-Gauge Finish Nailer (1)

In today’s article, we’re going to compare two straight finish nailers from two well-known manufacturers – the NT65M2S from Hitachi and the SFN64 from NuMax. Both of these nailers have received positive reviews from their respective customers, so now it’s time to determine which of the two reigns supreme. Just a heads up: there are way more overlapping specs than there are differences between the two.

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Hitachi NT65M2S
Both of these finish nailers are pneumatic tools, meaning that you need to have your own compressor in your workshop to operate them. The Hitachi has a PSI range of between 80 and 120, the maximum allowing it to penetrate better through harder materials.

NuMax SFN64 Straight Finish Nailer

NuMax SFN64
The NuMax requires between 70 and 110 PSI to operate. The smaller PSI requirement compared to the Hitachi means you can get by with a smaller, more inexpensive air compressor, though if you already have one in your shop, it won’t matter.

Conclusion: In all honesty, there won’t be any significant differences when comparing their performance at their lowest and highest required PSI settings. Theoretically, the Hitachi should be able to drive nails a bit more effectively than the NuMax, but after doing a couple of test runs, we were satisfied with how they both performed.


Hitachi NT65M2S and NuMax SFN64
Both of these straight finish nailers use nail stick magazines. The design of the magazine limits maneuverability. Both of their magazines have a maximum nail-holding capacity of only 100 nails, so to reduce downtime (if time is an issue), you should consider investing in multiple magazines for quick reloads.

Adjustable Exhaust Port

Hitachi NT65M2S and NuMax SFN64
The exhaust port shoots out quick bursts of air when the trigger is pulled. If you can’t twist and turn the port, then you’re going to get a face-full of pressurized air with every shot – something that can get annoying over time. Thankfully, both the Hitachi and the NuMax come with 360° adjustable exhaust ports so you can redirect the air in another direction.

Hitachi NT65M2S

Jam Release

Hitachi NT65M2S and NuMax SFN64
Dealing with jammed nails in the nozzle of a nail gun is nothing new. In our experience, every single finish nailer we’ve tried has had at least one occurrence of a nail jam some time during testing. It’s nothing to stress out over since in many cases it’s a simple fix. This is true with both of these finish nailers. They do not require the use of external tools for clearing any nail jams. Instead, they both have quick-release features to eliminate any jams in a jiffy.

Nail Size

Hitachi NT65M2S and NuMax SFN64
Even though straight finish nailers use smaller sized nails than their angled counterparts, you still need to consider how large (or small) to use. Luckily, when choosing between the Hitachi and the NuMax, you won’t need to consider which nail to use since they both use the same sized nails. They both use 16-gauge nails of at most 2-1/2 inches long.


Hitachi NT65MS2
Despite both of these tools having numerous similarities in specs, the weight of each tool is very different. The Hitachi weighs only 3.7 pounds with an empty magazine. We were mightily impressed by how lightweight this tool is.

NuMax SFN64 Straight Finish Nailer Review

NuMax SFN64
Not to say that the NuMax is a heavy, fatigue-inducing nailer. It weighs almost a pound heavier than the Hitachi (4.5 pounds) with an empty clip which is lightweight by any standard.

Conclusion: Weight is one department where these two tools differ. It’s an extremely important factor to take into account since you don’t want to be lifting around a heavy handheld power tool. The thing about pneumatic finish nailers is that their power doesn’t come from an internal motor but rather an external air compressor, so additional weight from a larger motor doesn’t translate into additional power. For this reason, we favor the lighter Hitachi.


Hitachi NT65MS2
We very rarely question the duration of a manufacturer’s warranty since the lifespan of any high-quality product that we review is going to outlast the warranty by several years. However, when it comes to these two tools, it’s clear that something’s afoot. The Hitachi comes with a super-long 5-year warranty. No problems there.

Hitachi NT65M2S Review

NuMax SFN64
The NuMax, on the other hand, comes with a 1-year warranty. That’s 12 months of usage that’s insured by the company. Beyond that, anything can happen, and your tool won’t be covered. It’s disappointing, to say the least and makes us question why such the short-term coverage?

Conclusion: Why only a 1-year warranty for the NuMaxPerhaps we’ll never know, but many customers seem happy with choosing the NuMax, and there are very few complaints about it. On the other hand, it’s always better to be safe than sorry, and that’s why the Hitachi’s 5-year limited warranty is something we’re more comfortable with.

NuMax SFN64


So now we have to decide which of these two finish nailers to deem the winner. In all honesty, at least regarding performance, we can’t find any significant distinctions between them. However, supporting factors like the tools’ weights and manufacturers’ warranties also play an important role in determining which of them to get if you’re on the fence. Looking at such factors, we feel that the Hitachi would be the better choice.

First, the Hitachi NT65MS2 is almost a pound lighter than the NuMax SFN64. They’re both lightweight, but since the Hitachi is “lightweight,” we have to go with that. Second, the 5-year warranty is nothing to laugh at. A long warranty offer should instill confidence in the product, and we’re sure that if you decide to purchase the Hitachi, it won’t suddenly fail within the first 5-year timeframe.

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