Woodworking and concrete cutting saws require two very different approaches when it comes to the design of the saws that do the work. The cutting of wood requires many sharp teeth on a blade, where masonry work is more of a grinding activity that wears away the concrete, stone, or tile that is being worked on. Masonry saws also operate with higher horsepower motors in order to force their way through tough materials such as concrete.
Another major difference you will encounter with a masonry saw is the need for a cooling and lubrication system. Grinding through concrete or other hard materials generates an incredible amount of heat that can easily dull and break a blade. A dull blade leads to slower cutting, and before long, a broken blade. This will happen fairly quickly if work is done without any kind of cooling system involved.
If you can afford it, go with the saw that has the most horsepower possible. Higher horsepower motors will grind through their work faster and smoother, meaning your job will be done sooner. This also means that your blades will not wear out as quickly, as they will be done cutting sooner than with a lower horsepower motor. Carefully consider the depth capacity of your masonry saw as well. Depth capacity determines the size of blades that your saw can employ.
There are several different types of saws in the masonry market today. Perhaps the least expensive and lightweight is the tile cutter. The tile cutter functions by simply slicing a score into a tile and then cracking it the rest of the way in half. A tile cutter may be satisfactory for a simple home project, but for anything more serious, it will not suffice.
The wet tile saw is a more serious version of the simpler tile cutter. With the wet tile saw, you can make quick work of many tiles quickly and easily. The wet tile saw works like a small table saw with water jets that spray down the saw as it works. The larger gas powered cousins of the wet tile saw are what you need for cutting through concrete, stone, or brick.
The Diamond Products MK-2001 is a more affordable model of masonry saw, coming in at $1,559. Larger masonry saws will run upwards of $4000.