PORTER-CABLE PCC601LA 20V MAX Lithium Drill Driver Review

This Porter-Cable PCC601LA is an excellent product. It is a perfect power tool to use in basic home improvements and DIY projects. It is lightweight and compact to fit in small or big hands, so it is the right size for men and women alike. It has a motor that can deliver 283 max watts out and a 2-speed gearbox where you can choose speeds from 0-350 or 0-1,500 revolutions per minute.

This high-performing drill driver can be your best friend when it comes to regular maintenance of the house but do not push it to its limit by using it in heavy duty tasks because it is not designed for that. This kind of drill driver can only manage light to medium tasks.

PORTER-CABLE 20V MAX Cordless Drill/Driver Kit, 1/2-Inch (PCC601LA)



  • Delivers 283 Max Watts of output power
  • Comes with a two-speed gearbox
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Uses a 20V lithium ion battery
  • Features a ½ inches keyless chuck
  • Has 23 clutch settings


  • Not for heavy-duty tasks

Our Opinion

A High Performing Motor

PORTER-CABLE 20V MAX Cordless Drill/Driver Kit, 1/2-Inch (PCC601LA)The Max Watts Out refers to the overall power of a tool. For years, some brands have been using this calculation, but it has never really caught on. A lot of power tool makers still use speed and torque as measurements.

To calculate the Max Watts Out, you have to multiply the speed and torque and then divide the product with a constant. Using this calculation, you will be able to know how much power the tool offers in watts. This means that, if you compare two products that have different maximum torques and speeds, the one with the higher speed or torques does not always produce more power.

Speaking in Max Watts Out terms, the Porter-Cable PCC601LA definitely has a high performing motor. It is very powerful and can drill through wood, metal or plastic.

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Uses a Low Maintenance Battery

Many of our gadgets today use a lithium ion battery, and these small compact batteries are also being used by the power tools being manufactured today. Instead of having the NiCad kind more and more companies are making the innovation to shift from the heavier and bulkier battery to the lighter lithium ion.

These batteries have a high energy density. A higher power density battery is more advantageous to use in power tools because they need to operate longer and need more power.

Lithium ion batteries have a slow discharge rate which means that they can hold their charge for much longer than other battery types. They also do not have the memory effect like in NiCad and NiMH batteries which, in a nutshell, shortens the usability.

Features ½-inch Keyless Chuck and 23 Clutch Settings

The chuck that holds the bits you need for drilling or screwing is keyless. Porter-Cable removed the need for you to use a chuck key to loosen or tighten the jaws of the chuck. A keyed chuck’s teeth can break over time, but that is not a problem for keyless chucks. You will only be using your hands to put or remove the bits. Using gloves may also provide extra grip for you to ensure that the bit is securely in place.

Being keyless, it means that the bits will only have to spin one way to keep the bit tight in the chuck. The PCC601LA has 23 different clutch setting to give you more control. This will allow you to drive the screws in without stripping. Naturally, you would need higher clutch settings to drive larger screws but also consider what material you are driving the screws in. Driving large screws into hardwood will need a different clutch setting than when you drive the same screws in softwood.

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Conveniently Cordless

Cordless power drills are advantageous for those who need to get home projects done and DIYers, simply for the reason that they are very convenient. Because cordless drills operate on batteries, and in the case of the Porter-Cable PCC601LA, lithium ion, this drill driver is lightweight and compact. It saves you the hassle of wires being too long that it gets messy and trips you or too short that it cannot reach a power outlet to turn on when you need to get things done in a particular place in the house. It also reduces the fatigue and stress in your hands while you work and is easy to store.

Added Benefit of a LED Light

The PCC601LA also features an LED work light. The main reason for this is to illuminate dark work areas, but there are other benefits from this too. LED gives off a little amount of heat compared to other kinds of bulbs which means that there is little to no chance of your skin getting burned. LEDs also use very little battery power so no need to worry about draining the battery too much.

Comparison with Porter-Cable PCC620B

Let’s compare this model to another Porter-Cable drill, the PCC620B. They have different functions and features but share some similarities as well. Both have LED lights, 23 clutch settings, and use the same 20V lithium ion battery. They also use ½-inch chucks but the PCC601LA’s is keyless while the other is metal ratcheting.

The PCC620B is slightly more expensive compared to the PCC6501LA. The former is a hammer, drill and driver, a 3-in-1 tool. They almost have the same RPM capacity but the PCC620B’s is slightly higher at 0-400 and 0-1,600.

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To get the best value for your money remember that there are different kinds of drills for different kinds of jobs. The Porter-Cable PCC601LA drill driver is best suited for DIY and basic home improvements. Installing shelves and cabinets, and assembling furniture can be a breeze with the help of this high-quality tool. It will not stress your hands because it is lightweight, especially when you need it for overhead applications and with the help of the bright LED work light your eyes will not have to strain too much in low light and dark areas.