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Old 09-18-2008, 07:20 PM #1
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Default Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

I recently ordered one of the very popular, cheap, 5 mW green laser pointers and noticed it was very, very bright for 5mW and I could see the beam in the daylight. So I checked it with my LaserBee and it was putting out 50mW I then put a NOVA IR filter between it and the thermopile and the power dropped to 36mW.

So my cheap 5mW pointer, that I really wanted to be 5mW or less (I have more powerful lasers) is not only overpowered but a good bit of that power is IR!

Don't get me wrong - on one hand a 50mW green pointer with a very nice, tight beam, for the price of a 5mW is fantastic! On the other hand, what if someone received their shiny new 5mW laser pointer, didn't bother wearing eye protection (Hey it's only 5mW right?) and bounced it off a mirror or something directly in to one of there eyes. . . at 50mW.

I know there are a bunch of people out there who will want to know where I got this so they could get one and maybe get lucky too. And there are also a bunch of people out there that might get mad at me for identifying where it came from because the source might have to quit selling them if it became common knowledge (assuming they were doing it intentionally).

Of course this may have just been a one time mix up -their 50mW pens look identical (hint). Who knows. But it still shouldn't have happened.

My main concern is safety and part of me really wants to expose it, before some kid somewhere looses their eyesight because of them :'( (assuming it wasn't a mixup and they intended to ship a 50mW and label it 5mW)

I'm torn and need opinions. Should I name names, or keep my mouth shut and not ruin a good thing.


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Old 09-18-2008, 07:53 PM #2
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

They won't care. Your efforts will be for naught. If you must do it for your own conscience, certainly do so, but don't expect any substantive response from them.

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Old 09-18-2008, 08:11 PM #3
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

No, I don't think they would care either, in fact I wonder if they are doing it intentionally in an attempt to regain some sales they recently lost by not being able to ship anything >5mW to the US (hint). As in "maybe, we'll sell thousands of these when word gets around that they are really 50mW."

I guess I was just wondering if I should say who the distributor is and the product #, here on the forum so at least people who read about it will be aware?
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Old 09-19-2008, 11:32 AM #4
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

DX true 5 lasers are usually anything but 5mw. Mine would put out 30+mw and I bought it 4 months ago before the laser ban. They aren't intentionally doing it and they can't do anything about it because DX doesn't have a power meter to test the lasers they sell. IMO people should be glad that they can legally buy a bunch of dx true 5's and safely assume that some of them will be more like true 30's and above. Then you can sell the weaker lasers to friends and keep the overpowered ones.
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Old 09-19-2008, 08:17 PM #5
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

I guess I'm behind the times. You know what they say about assuming :-[
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Old 09-22-2008, 04:52 AM #6
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

I bulk ordered a 100 lot of those cheapo green Chinese laser pointers, first off NO IR filter, secondly some leaked IR so bad that they actually could smoke stuff!

ACTUAL GREEN POWER WAS A SCATTER PLOT RANGING FROM DOA TO 97mW

The vast majority of the working ones were 7 to 25mW of green and about 20-50mW of IR

Only about 5 of them were <5mw green power..

One out of the batch 9 had a green power level of an unbelievable 75 to 97mw with about 10mw of IR

And there were about 20 of them that were DOA/parts units that needed the DPM re-glued in it's mount etc.. Of these 7 were misaligned so bad the pump diode totally missed the MCA and exited the lens with enough power to burn stuff about 2-300mW! :-/

On most of them the power switch sucked so bad their fate was being turned into and sold as a "laser module"

The cost delivered was about $800 for all of them.
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Old 09-22-2008, 05:15 AM #7
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

Wow, this is a SCARY forum. *I have a 5mW pointer, and I expose myself to the dot from a couple feet away very freqently. *I even got hit in the eye reflected off a mirror from it the other day! *I sure hope it isn't more than it claims...

How much are laser power meters and IR filters?

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Old 09-26-2008, 10:53 PM #8
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketparrotlet
Wow, this is a SCARY forum. *I have a 5mW pointer, and I expose myself to the dot from a couple feet away very freqently. *I even got hit in the eye reflected off a mirror from it the other day! *I sure hope it isn't more than it claims...

How much are laser power meters and IR filters?

-Mark
A Laserbee LPM is around $250, and an IR filter from NOVA is $10.
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Old 09-27-2008, 07:47 PM #9
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

Laserbees are about $200 actually (on eBay, non-graphing, including shipping). They's always one on sale.

When playing with my cat, I only use those cheap red laser pointers. My cat didn't seem to like the low-powered green one anyway. Probably hurt her eyes.
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Old 10-16-2008, 02:04 AM #10
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

That is scary. I have an Ebay green 5mw laser, and I'm always getting hit in the eye with it. :-/ It doesn't hurt, and the dot's not incredibly bright to look at, but the though that it could be leaking so much IR scares me. I have a question. When I shine a flashlight into the laser, there is a slight green-blue glimmer. Is that the diode, or an IR filter?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketparrotlet
Wow, this is a SCARY forum. *I have a 5mW pointer, and I expose myself to the dot from a couple feet away very freqently. *I even got hit in the eye reflected off a mirror from it the other day! *I sure hope it isn't more than it claims...

How much are laser power meters and IR filters?

-Mark
You could get a power meter for 26$ on Ebay that hooks up to a digital multimeter, but they only measure up to 30mw. But still, that's enough to tell you if you should wear safety goggles or not.
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Old 10-16-2008, 05:52 PM #11
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

I was worrying my dx &quot;new wish&quot; 5mw wasn't 5.... the dot on the wall appears brighter than my dilda at 200mw... i really don't know what power it would have to be to be brighter though, because green seems brighter.
I've noticed my laser is cold blooded, and only is super bright after using it a minute... maybe they measured the 5mw before it warmed up and kicked up a lot...
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Old 10-16-2008, 06:17 PM #12
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

I first claimed that my DX true 5mW lasers were &quot;over powered&quot;, but the truth is that they are &quot;under rated&quot; ;D

If I recall correctly, the dx 5-50mW lasers are built EXACTLY the same, and they get rated from the manufacture, probably without much testing, I wouldn't doubt that they just point the dot at the wall and give it a 5, 20, 30, or 50 sticker without even measuring them. One of my DX 5's was actually around 50mW, and a few were 10, and a couple modules were around 30 (given 5V).

So yeah, you never know what you'll get, that's the bottom line.
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:07 AM #13
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

Lol, I was worried that my Radioshack Green Laser was under 5mW, now I'm worried that it's over 5mW.
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Old 12-04-2008, 12:31 AM #14
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

OK Hodad, I give up, who is selling a 5mw and sending out 50mw's, make, model, sku#, price, etc??
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Old 03-13-2009, 08:35 PM #15
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

This is where I got mine but it has been several months ago. *Price is now only $11.99. *I should have listed this from the beginning. *
http://www.dealextreme.com/details.dx/sku.91
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Old 03-17-2009, 11:02 AM #16
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Default Re: Consumer Alert - 5mw green may really be 50mW

Now, the next interesting question would be: how long will they keep on outputting 50mW?
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