Old 03-01-2017, 05:01 PM #1
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Question Looking for my first high powered laser

So i've been eyeballing the Arctic Spyder for years now but as we all know WL doesn't ship to the US and i've read some things that give me reservations about their quality. So i'm looking for something similar, very powerful, handheld, excellent build quality and reasonable price point. I saw the 4w from Jetlasers which looks good and also the 7w from Sanwu. My problem with the latter is it's 60 seconds on/off duty cycle. I'd rather a laser that can function continuously without damaging itself.

So any thoughts on these would be appreciated as well as other similar products. It doesn't have to be the most powerful on the market, i'd rather something with special features like safety switches and optional lens kits but more power is definitely better.

I'd like to collect 1w+ examples of every available color eventually but im starting with blue for its cost effectiveness.

Thank you!


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Old 03-01-2017, 05:07 PM #2
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

Hi there,

Beside 7W 445nm, we also have 5W 445nm blue available on spiker series and it has an unlimited duty cycle.
https://www.sanwulasers.org/product/spiker
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Old 03-01-2017, 05:37 PM #3
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kronos1996 View Post
So i've been eyeballing the Arctic Spyder for years now but as we all know WL doesn't ship to the US and i've read some things that give me reservations about their quality. So i'm looking for something similar, very powerful, handheld, excellent build quality and reasonable price point. I saw the 4w from Jetlasers which looks good and also the 7w from Sanwu. My problem with the latter is it's 60 seconds on/off duty cycle. I'd rather a laser that can function continuously without damaging itself.

So any thoughts on these would be appreciated as well as other similar products. It doesn't have to be the most powerful on the market, i'd rather something with special features like safety switches and optional lens kits but more power is definitely better.

I'd like to collect 1w+ examples of every available color eventually but im starting with blue for its cost effectiveness.

Thank you!
I would definitely recommend something of class 3B like 100 mW greenie for start. With safety eyewear of course. Once you get used to this you might go for higher powers. The reason is that these class 4 beasts are very powerful and it is not that much fun with them at beginning. I went for 800 mW rated (measured about 1 W) 532 nm as my first laser and it was not very wise. With 100 mW I would enjoy it more as I was scared of such a high power.
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Old 03-01-2017, 05:54 PM #4
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

Ditto, green or red laser pointers are always a good starter laser to begin with.
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Old 03-01-2017, 06:12 PM #5
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

I'd say build one yourself! You'll save money, learn some things, and be able to get exactly what you want.
It's fun, it's not too hard, and there is lots of support available on the forum.
Good luck and have fun!
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Old 03-01-2017, 06:28 PM #6
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

I'd say go for the jetlasers or the one Podo said as long as you have goggles and really have thought about the possibility and risk of blinding yourself and others.
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Old 03-01-2017, 06:33 PM #7
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

Quote:
Originally Posted by Podo View Post
Hi there,

Beside 7W 445nm, we also have 5W 445nm blue available on spiker series and it has an unlimited duty cycle.
https://www.sanwulasers.org/product/spiker
Sold! Hehe

What is the difference between a G2 and G7 lens?

Thank you
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Old 03-01-2017, 06:43 PM #8
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

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I would definitely recommend something of class 3B like 100 mW greenie for start. With safety eyewear of course. Once you get used to this you might go for higher powers. The reason is that these class 4 beasts are very powerful and it is not that much fun with them at beginning. I went for 800 mW rated (measured about 1 W) 532 nm as my first laser and it was not very wise. With 100 mW I would enjoy it more as I was scared of such a high power.
Logical advice and i do intend on acquiring a lower powered laser for more standard usage, i have a basic understanding of how dangerous these devices can be and don't intend on using it for much beyond stargazing and destroying the occassional balloon. 😋

But i for certain won't be clicking the buy button until i've considered the risks carefully.

BTW can you reccomend any Yellow or Orange lasers in the mw range you reccomended? I'm drawn to more unique things...
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Old 03-01-2017, 06:46 PM #9
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

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Originally Posted by alphabirth View Post
I'd say build one yourself! You'll save money, learn some things, and be able to get exactly what you want.
It's fun, it's not too hard, and there is lots of support available on the forum.
Good luck and have fun!
Funny thing is i already have tried that... Mini-maglight, heatsink, ebay blu-ray laser diode and a circuit board to regulate the power. Despite soldering it to the best of my abilities i was never able to make it function even though i used two seperate diodes in my testing.
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Old 03-01-2017, 07:15 PM #10
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kronos1996 View Post
Logical advice and i do intend on acquiring a lower powered laser for more standard usage, i have a basic understanding of how dangerous these devices can be and don't intend on using it for much beyond stargazing and destroying the occassional balloon. 😋

But i for certain won't be clicking the buy button until i've considered the risks carefully.

BTW can you reccomend any Yellow or Orange lasers in the mw range you reccomended? I'm drawn to more unique things...
Good approach. Rep+.

I would recommend Dragon Lasers 589 nm Spartan 30 mW or 50 mW rated - but likely it is more power and maybe you get multiline unit (more wavelengths). I have one and I love it. Not only amazing wavelength, but also great beam, high quality host, which is very nice feeling to hold. You can see some beamshots in my artworks (link in my signature) and a lot of photos here on LPF (check Brucemir for example - beautiful indoor shots with starring many beams and optical elements). Also you might check for review of the Spartan. However Spartans have no additional safety features like key, code sequence etc. just removable lens cover - but it is more protection again dust. There is only power button on tailcap, which is quite hard to push accidentaly, but you can replace the tailcap with your custom made. But these lasers are very expensive.

Other option might be to get combined red + green beam - but it is not true yellow and often the beam is separated in red and green due to poor alignment at some distance or not pure due to different beam specs - diameters, divergence. Better to get ArcticDude's RGB open source host (check LPF for thread) to get even white and various other colours. However all these composed beams are separated into individual lasers when hitting e. g. diffraction gratting. This will not happen with real yellow/orange, which remain yellow/orange.

Also CNI makes 589 nm (golden, sunny yellow) and 593.5 nm (orange), however DL should be CNI modules anyway.

I can pop red/black balloons with my EVO (probably more than 100 mW) by just touching them with beam. But it won't pop green balloons for example.

If you go for some DPSS laser (532 nm, 589 nm...), make sure it is IR filtered. Some cheapos might be without proper IR filter, or you have to select IR filtered option in as I have seen in some reputable laser company (sorry I do not remember where it was).
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Old 03-01-2017, 08:19 PM #11
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kronos1996 View Post
Logical advice and i do intend on acquiring a lower powered laser for more standard usage, i have a basic understanding of how dangerous these devices can be and don't intend on using it for much beyond stargazing and destroying the occassional balloon. 😋

But i for certain won't be clicking the buy button until i've considered the risks carefully.

BTW can you reccomend any Yellow or Orange lasers in the mw range you reccomended? I'm drawn to more unique things...
The DL spartan is basically the only show in town if you want an economical yellow laser. There are also some lower powered models available such as the 5mw aurora or the 593.5nm rigel, but those have very low output and aren't significantly cheaper than a 30mw spartan.
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Old 03-01-2017, 08:24 PM #12
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

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Originally Posted by Kronos1996 View Post
Sold! Hehe

What is the difference between a G2 and G7 lens?

Thank you
Sanwu Spiker 5 watt, one heck of a unit. Definitely need safety glasses with that guy! Got a Sanwu Silver 5 watt and she's a beauty. Burn anything you put in front of her. Be real careful of that guy, put an eye out real quick. Enjoy and be safe. Please!
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Old 03-02-2017, 03:56 AM #13
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

Thanks for the advice everyone!

Just to be clear true yellow and orange wavelength lasers are expensive, hard to find and not particularly powerful? I would love to learn more about diode manfacturing and how color relates to it...

Purple lasers are also very pretty and seem to be easier to locate. Green is significantly more expensive it seems, i wonder why this is. It probably relates to my earlier comment about diode creation.
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Old 03-02-2017, 05:34 AM #14
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Default Re: Looking for my first high powered laser

Yellow and orange portable lasers are more complex structure than diode. Similar to 532 nm green, but there is one more line generated in the crystal together with 1064 nm. Therefore they are not that efficient and more expensive in price power ratio.

Regarding wavelength - color each has different properties in terms of visibility of beam, range, burning capabilities etc. You might feel to search for more information for example here on LPF.

I think - for start you can get 532 nm 100 mW green - more less in the middle of spectrum. I love my WL Evo, which has variable power, quite a nice beam specs, safety features, you can get nice optics caps which might be combined to get more effects. Also it is powered by 2 common AA cells and the host is just awesome. Very versatile and the wavelength is very visible. I think this laser should be my first for full enjoyment. Under right temperature with good batts, I can even easily light cigarette without focussing lens. With focussing lens it engraves wood. The best WL product IMO. Question is if you can get one. Just be careful with cheap DPSS lasers as they might not be IR filtered.
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Current collection:
405 nm | 500 mW | Wicked Lasers Lunar
445 nm | 3.5 W | Wicked Lasers Arctic
520 nm | 1 W | Wicked Lasers Krypton
532 nm | 100 mW | Wicked Lasers Evo
532 nm | 800 mW | Sky Lasers PL

589 nm | 50 mW | Dragon Lasers Spartan
635 nm | 750 mW | Wicked Lasers Inferno
1 W RGB projector
(+ some laser pointers)

Ordered & shipped, coming soon:
473 nm | 100 mW | Jet Lasers PL-E Pro

My first steps with #laserpainting artwork - Instagram @radimmatera or you can see the latest photos in my thread on LPF.
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