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50mW CR2 Green Handheld from BudgetGadgets

styropyro

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BudgetGadgets 50mW CR2 Handhled

The Basics
When I first picked up the laser, I liked the feel of it in my hand. It is noticeably heavy and has that "well built" feeling. The on/off tailcap switch is very nice because you don't always have to hold down a switch when doing experiments and such. Brightness is typical of what you would expect out of a 50mW laser, it is very bright and it is almost too bright for star pointing because it ruins your night vision! The price is also good too, at just over $30 you can't go wrong!

Shipping/Packaging
Shipping took about two weeks from China, but it was free so I'm not complaining. This site does ship to the US unlike DX/KD. It was packaged well, as you can see it came in an interesting tin can case:


The case is padded with foam (which is black and is just asking to be engraved by the laser ::) ), and it contains a cutout for the laser and a CR2 battery. It came with a primary 3.0v CR2 so you can use it out of the box. I don't know about the quality of the battery, but I don't really care if it is good or not because you can get rechargeables for a couple bucks a piece.


Overall Appearance/Feel
The design of this laser looks nice and like I said earlier it feels good in the hand. It has a rubberish coating on the outside so you can get a good grip on it with it falling out of your hand. It has a wrist strap so you don't drop it if you're clumsy ;D


Compared to the KD50
As you may know the KD50 is a popular laser that looks almost identical to this one, but there are some differences. Besides the fact that this site ships to the US and KD doesn't, a noticeable difference is that this laser is a few mm longer than the KD50. Also, this laser seems to have a rubber like coating unlike
the KD50, I prefer the coating but others might not. The switch on the BG50 isn't as fiddly and weird as my KD50 which is a huge plus. This laser doesn't have the "driect" spelling error either. *:p Output on the two is about the same.


Visibility
As you would expect, this laser is very bright! For up close work you will want to use goggles because the dot is so bright from up close. The beam is visible in a lit room and much more visible in the night sky. The beam is too bright for star pointing and might mess up your night vision, but I think this is a good thing. :cool: This is bright enough to impress anybody you show it too. The dot always stays in a clean TEM00 so mode hopping is never a problem. The beam diameter is larger than most other green lasers, but this gives it better divergence.
Here's a pic showing the bigger beam diameter compared to a CNI GLP-150




Burning
This laser is not a great burner because it is only a 50mW, but you can pop balloons with it pretty easily. I can smoke the black foam in the case it came in, *and with a focusing lens I can light matches, but that is about it. If you want a laser that does all of the burning tricks this isn't the one for you.

IR Filter?!
This laser doesn't look like it has an IR filter, but it is nothing to piss your pants about. Because the IR stays within the main green beam, the only way to get exposed to large amounts of IR is if you point it in your eye, and then you have more to worry about then some IR exposure because your retinas are being burned by 50mW of green. :p If you are still worried, buy an IR filter for $1 from optotronics and put it in this laser.

Overall this is a good laser, for $30 you can't go wrong.

Edit: It looks like you can now order batteries with the laser. The rechargeables are 3.7v.

Video:
 
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styropyro

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MilanTheOne said:
looks nice.... did you get it for free????
Yeah I did, I got it in exchange for writing an honest review of the laser. I chose to review this one over the others because I knew of the popularity of the KD50 and this looked like a promising alternative.
 

Benm

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Very nice indeed, your BG50 looks like the 'good' KD50/DX30 CR2 lasers i got in the past - they also have the matte finish, but do have the spelling error on the label.

Would you mind unscrewing it and posting a picture of the circuit board inside? That might give some insight in which laser this actually is.

One thing to bear in mind is that you requested a sample for review, which might result in you getting the best of the bunch as they are more likely to test it before sending it out. Ofcourse there is no way to tell this for certain, but could be a consideration for others interested in getting one.
 

Milos

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IR Filter?!
This laser doesn't look like it has an IR filter, but it is nothing to piss your pants about. Because the IR stays within the main green beam, the only way to get exposed to large amounts of IR is if you point it in your eye, and then you have more to worry about then some IR exposure because your retinas are being burned by 50mW of green.
This is incorrect!

IR does NOT come out with main green beam because it needs totally different optics in order to do so.
IR comes out and spreads out rather wide comparing to the well collimated green beam, almost like flash light. This at long range makes it harmless, but at close range could be very dangerous to your eye, as it can bounce back to you off reflective objects, and you can't see it till you start to hurt.

nice review though,

best regards

Miloš
 

styropyro

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Benm said:
Very nice indeed, your BG50 looks like the 'good' KD50/DX30 CR2 lasers i got in the past - they also have the matte finish, but do have the spelling error on the label.

Would you mind unscrewing it and posting a picture of the circuit board inside? That might give some insight in which laser this actually is.

One thing to bear in mind is that you requested a sample for review, which might result in you getting the best of the bunch as they are more likely to test it before sending it out. Ofcourse there is no way to tell this for certain, but could be a consideration for others interested in getting one.
I'll get a picture of the circuit board today, when I took it apart I did notice a difference between the KD50 and the BG50.


Miloš said:
IR Filter?!
This laser doesn't look like it has an IR filter, but it is nothing to piss your pants about. Because the IR stays within the main green beam, the only way to get exposed to large amounts of IR is if you point it in your eye, and then you have more to worry about then some IR exposure because your retinas are being burned by 50mW of green.
This is incorrect!

IR does NOT come out with main green beam because it needs totally different optics in order to do so.
IR comes out and spreads out rather wide comparing to the well collimated green beam, almost like flash light. This at long range makes it harmless, but at close range could be very dangerous to your eye, as it can bounce back to you off reflective objects, and you can't see it till you start to hurt.

nice review though,

best regards

Miloš
That's what most people think, but not all unfiltered greenies are like this. According to my IR camera the IR from this thing stays pretty collimated with the green beam of light. Most of my unfiltered greenies are like this...for fun I measured the divergence of the IR of one of my unfiltered greenies and it came out to about 2.5mRad. I'll post a pic if you'd like.
 

diachi

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styropyro said:
[quote author=Miloš link=1231635447/0#6 date=1231761623]
IR Filter?!
This laser doesn't look like it has an IR filter, but it is nothing to piss your pants about. Because the IR stays within the main green beam, the only way to get exposed to large amounts of IR is if you point it in your eye, and then you have more to worry about then some IR exposure because your retinas are being burned by 50mW of green.
This is incorrect!

IR does NOT come out with main green beam because it needs totally different optics in order to do so.
IR comes out and spreads out rather wide comparing to the well collimated green beam, almost like flash light. This at long range makes it harmless, but at close range could be very dangerous to your eye, as it can bounce back to you off reflective objects, and you can't see it till you start to hurt.

nice review though,

best regards

Miloš
That's what most people think, but not all unfiltered greenies are like this. According to my IR camera the IR from this thing stays pretty collimated with the green beam of light. Most of my unfiltered greenies are like this...for fun I measured the divergence of the IR of one of my unfiltered greenies and it came out to about 2.5mRad. I'll post a pic if you'd like.
[/quote]

I have to agree with styro here, i've looked at IR dots from a distance, and they are still quite thin.

-Adam
 
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Question:  I own the KD50 (and so does my brother).  Is it filtered and/or does the IR stay with the beam?


styropyro said:
I'll get a picture of the circuit board today, when I took it apart I did notice a difference between the KD50 and the BG50.
lol...the KD50 has a switch in the circuit board...and it's then got a jumper shorting it out.
 

diachi

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phoenix3200 said:
Question:  I own the KD50 (and so does my brother).  Is it filtered and/or does the IR stay with the beam?


[quote author=styropyro link=1231635447/0#7 date=1231769007]
I'll get a picture of the circuit board today, when I took it apart I did notice a difference between the KD50 and the BG50.
lol...the KD50 has a switch in the circuit board...and it's then got a jumper shorting it out.[/quote]


has the KD50 got a heatsink around the module, or is it just a fat module ? also, if the pointer does have a heatsink, whats the diameter of the hole ?

-thanks,

-Adam
 

Milos

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Diachi said:
[quote author=styropyro link=1231635447/0#7 date=1231769007]

[quote author=Miloš link=1231635447/0#6 date=1231761623]
IR Filter?!
This laser doesn't look like it has an IR filter, but it is nothing to piss your pants about. Because the IR stays within the main green beam, the only way to get exposed to large amounts of IR is if you point it in your eye, and then you have more to worry about then some IR exposure because your retinas are being burned by 50mW of green.
This is incorrect!

IR does NOT come out with main green beam because it needs totally different optics in order to do so.
IR comes out and spreads out rather wide comparing to the well collimated green beam, almost like flash light. This at long range makes it harmless, but at close range could be very dangerous to your eye, as it can bounce back to you off reflective objects, and you can't see it till you start to hurt.

nice review though,

best regards

Miloš
That's what most people think, but not all unfiltered greenies are like this. According to my IR camera the IR from this thing stays pretty collimated with the green beam of light. Most of my unfiltered greenies are like this...for fun I measured the divergence of the IR of one of my unfiltered greenies and it came out to about 2.5mRad. I'll post a pic if you'd like.
[/quote]

I have to agree with styro here, i've looked at IR dots from a distance, and they are still quite thin.

-Adam
[/quote]

I have different experience, more of what i described as a flash light, with my 150mW unfiltered greenie from Kaidomain
I have tested its power agains thermal power meter multiple times at different distances, and power seem to drop when i distant the laser over 30cm.
Also it makes more sense that those two frequencies would be differently focused with same lens.  
I haven't looked through camera for IR dot though, but i don't doubt your findings.
Might give it a shot these days

best regards
 

styropyro

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Here is a picture of the circuit board on the BG50, I'll take pictures of my KD50 circuit board to compare if you'd like.
 

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Benm

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Looks a bit like the circuit board in the KD50 - at least some version of that.. though those dont have the plastic spacer.
 

Benm

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It think its electrically quite similar really - the pot is replaced by 2 fixed resistors (marked R6 and R11) in the lower set of pictures. Both are drivers that are designed with using the feedback diode in mind, though i doubt they actually do.
 




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