A computer numerical control (CNC) router is a computer-controlled cutting machine related to the hand-held router used for cutting various hard materials, such as wood, composites, aluminium, steel, plastics, glass, and foams. CNC routers can perform the tasks of many carpentry shop machines such as the panel saw, the spindle moulder, and the boring machine. They can also cut mortises and tenons.
A CNC router is very similar in concept to a CNC milling machine. Instead of routing by hand, tool paths are controlled via computer numerical control. The CNC router is one of many kinds of tools that have CNC variants.
A CNC router typically produces consistent and high-quality work and improves factory productivity. Unlike a jig router, the CNC router can produce a one-off as effectively as repeated identical production. Its benefits include automation, precision, reduction of waste and errors, and the time the finished product takes to get to market.