Stihl 390 Vs Stihl 026: The Side By Side Comparison

In the world of Stihl chainsaws, two popular models often find themselves in the spotlight: Stihl 390 Vs Stihl 026. Both chainsaws have their own set of features and advantages that cater to different user needs. In this side-by-side comparison, we will delve into the details of these two models to help you know more details so that you can choose the right one for you.

Stihl 390

The Stihl 390 is a powerful chainsaw designed for professional use. It belongs to Stihl’s MS 390 series, known for its robust construction and reliable performance. The chainsaw incorporates advanced technologies such as Stihl’s Easy2Start system, which reduces the effort required to start the engine, and a side-access chain tensioner for quick and easy adjustments.

Stihl 026

The Stihl 026 is a compact and lightweight chainsaw suitable for both homeowners and occasional professional use. It is part of Stihl’s MS 260 series, which is known for its versatility and reliability. The Stihl 026 is appreciated for its ease of use, maneuverability, and good cutting performance, making it a popular choice for homeowners and occasional users who prioritize reliability and portability.

Stihl 390 Vs Stihl 026

Engine Displacement

Engine displacement directly affects the power and performance of a chainsaw. The Stihl 390 features an impressive engine displacement of 64.1cc, providing ample power for demanding tasks. On the other hand, the Stihl 026 has a slightly smaller engine displacement of 48.7cc. While still capable of handling many cutting jobs, it may have limitations when it comes to heavier-duty applications.

Power output

Power output is another crucial aspect to consider when comparing chainsaws. With its larger engine displacement, the Stihl 390 delivers a robust power output of 4.6 kW (6.2 hp). This high power allows for efficient cutting through thick logs and challenging materials. Conversely, the Stihl 026 offers a respectable power output of 2.9 kW (3.9 hp), making it suitable for general use and lighter tasks.


Weight plays a significant role in determining user comfort and maneuverability while operating a chainsaw. The Stihl 390 weighs approximately 6.4 kg (14.1 lbs), adding some heft due to its powerful engine and larger size. In comparison, the Stihl 026 is relatively lighter at around 5.6 kg (12.3 lbs). For extended periods of use or overhead cutting, the lighter weight of the Stihl 026 may be preferable.

Power-to-weight ratio

The power-to-weight ratio is a crucial factor to consider when assessing the overall efficiency and performance of a chainsaw. The Stihl 390 boasts an impressive power-to-weight ratio due to its powerful engine and slightly higher weight. This combination allows for efficient and effective cutting even in demanding applications. On the other hand, the Stihl 026, although lighter, may have a lower power-to-weight ratio, which could impact its performance under heavy loads.

Sound pressure level

Noise levels can significantly impact operator comfort and compliance with noise regulations. The Stihl 390 has a sound pressure level of approximately 106 dB(A), which is considered loud. Conversely, the Stihl 026 operates at a slightly quieter sound pressure level of around 102 dB(A). If working in noise-sensitive areas or for prolonged periods, the lower sound pressure level of the Stihl 026 may be more desirable.

Sound power level

Sound power level is another important aspect to consider, as it indicates the total noise emitted by the chainsaw. The Stihl 390 has a sound power level of approximately 118 dB(A), reflecting its powerful engine and larger size. Comparatively, the Stihl 026 operates at a lower sound power level of around 116 dB(A). While both models emit considerable noise, the Stihl 026 offers a slightly quieter experience.

Vibration level left/right

Vibration levels can impact user fatigue and comfort during prolonged use. The Stihl 390 has a vibration level of approximately 4.5 m/s² for both left and right-hand operators. Similarly, the Stihl 026 exhibits a vibration level of approximately 4.7 m/s² for both hands. While there is a minimal difference between the two models, it is important to consider using appropriate safety measures, such as gloves and anti-vibration systems, to minimize the effects of vibrations.

Saw chain pitch

The saw chain pitch determines the size of the chain and its compatibility with various cutting tasks. Both the Stihl 390 and the Stihl 026 support a range of chain pitch options. The Stihl 390 can accommodate 0.325″ or 3/8″ pitch chains, providing versatility for different cutting requirements. Similarly, the Stihl 026 supports 0.325″ or 3/8″ pitch chains, ensuring flexibility in matching the chain to specific cutting applications.

STIHL Oilomatic saw chain type

The type of saw chain used can significantly impact cutting performance and durability. Both the Stihl 390 and the Stihl 026 are compatible with various STIHL Oilomatic saw chain types, including Rapid Super (RS) and Rapid Micro (RM). These saw chain types offer excellent cutting performance and longevity, ensuring efficient operation and fewer interruptions during cutting tasks.

Stihl 390 Vs Stihl 026: Which is better?

When comparing the Stihl 390 and the Stihl 026, it’s important to consider the specific needs and preferences of the user. Both chainsaws have their strengths and are designed for different applications.

The Stihl 390 is a more powerful and robust chainsaw, suitable for professional use and demanding cutting tasks. With its larger engine displacement and longer guide bar, it excels at cutting through larger logs and trees. The Stihl 390 is built to withstand heavy use and is known for its durability and high cutting performance. It is an excellent choice for professionals in the forestry and tree care industries who require a reliable and powerful chainsaw.

On the other hand, the Stihl 026 is a lighter and more compact chainsaw, ideal for homeowners and occasional users. It offers good cutting performance and maneuverability, making it suitable for smaller to medium-sized jobs around the yard. The Stihl 026 is easy to handle and provides a balance between power and portability, making it a popular choice for those who prioritize ease of use and versatility.

Ultimately, the better chainsaw between the Stihl 390 and the Stihl 026 depends on the specific needs and intended use of the user. Professionals or those dealing with larger cutting tasks may find the Stihl 390 more suitable, while homeowners or occasional users may prefer the lighter and more portable Stihl 026.


In conclusion, the Stihl 390 and the Stihl 026 are both impressive chainsaws in their respective categories. The Stihl 390 stands out as a powerful workhorse, built to tackle demanding cutting tasks with ease. On the other hand, the Stihl 026 shines as a versatile and lightweight chainsaw, offering good cutting performance and maneuverability for homeowners and occasional users. Ultimately, the choice between these two models depends on your specific needs, preferences, and the nature of the tasks at hand.