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I've done my research... now I need help deciding

Zhinkk

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My last 2 days have been nothing but looking up lasers, reading reviews, understanding the technology, and I think I'm ready to purchase. Here are the candidates. Can someone help me choose? Excluding the glasses (I've already placed an order), I have a $100 budget (shipping has to be included in that).

I want to stick with green lasers because I will use this at night a lot and I want it to be very bright. I also do want it to be ABLE to burn easily but it won't be the main focus.


1. LP 532nm 150mW green PEN laser from laserbtb - $90 with shipping included



pros:
- only $80 with IR filter installed
- 150mW
- pen form (I actually like this, it's more portable)

cons:
- DPSS laser so temperature would have a big impact on this, I want to use this on cold nights also.
- pen form (lol). The reason I also listed this as a con is because I've read that the HL form is a better host than the pen because of heat absorbing and it can focus better (I want to burn, so this sounds important).
- Due to the things above, I don't think the duty cycle will be very long
- Doesn't seem to have any focus adjustment








2. HL 520nm 50mW from laserbtb - $100 with shipping included


pros:
- 520nm
- better host
- focusable
- Not a DPSS, so less affected by temperature
- single mode

cons:
- I could only afford the 50mW version of this. How much dimmer will this be than the 150mW pen above? How will it compare in terms of burning to #1? (considering it has focus?)
- Pretty sure that's the only con








3. SF501B 532nm Green from scifilaser - $65 with shipping included


pros:
- good host
- focusable
- Cheaaaap :)
- Can burn decently

cons:
- DPSS. Not really a con
- Not in stock. Not sure when it will be :(
- 80-120mW. I'm not sure exactly what I'll get. The one from laserbtb will for sure be around 150mW

Lucklaser, lazerer, and a few other sites also had some really great deals but I've heard some very bad things about them so I did not include them on here.

So sorry for such a long thread. I would appreciate ANY feedback, experiences, or maybe a laser I didn't list on here. You guys have been really helpful so far, thank you for that. :)
 
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Rifter

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The lack of being able to focus that DPSS pen is going to hurt its ability to burn. Also its duty cycle will be very low.

So I would go for either option 2 or 3. Probably 3 he is a good guy and on the forums to answer any questions you may have.
 

Zhinkk

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The lack of being able to focus that DPSS pen is going to hurt its ability to burn. Also its duty cycle will be very low.

So I would go for either option 2 or 3. Probably 3 he is a good guy and on the forums to answer any questions you may have.
I guess this is very hard to just "guess" but HOW low do you think the duty cycle will be? Like, at least 60 seconds on/60 seconds off? Or even shorter than that? #3 has a 60 sec on/off duty cycle.

Any idea of how much brighter a 100mW 532nm beam (#3) will be compared to a 50mw 520nm (#2) beam?
 

Rifter

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I guess this is very hard to just "guess" but HOW low do you think the duty cycle will be? Like, at least 60 seconds on/60 seconds off? Or even shorter than that? #3 has a 60 sec on/off duty cycle.

Any idea of how much brighter a 100mW 532nm beam (#3) will be compared to a 50mw 520nm (#2) beam?
It will be way worse than the # 3 option in the 501b host, probably 30/90 or somewhere in that range.

I would guess 2-3 times brighter but you can plug in the stats to this converter to get a accurate #.

Beam: (643nm 1mw) vs. (471nm 1mw)
 

Zhinkk

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Thanks for the replies guys. #3 will be about 2.5x brighter than #2. That's a big jump... I guess I should just wait until thejoker has #3 in stock again?
 

Rifter

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Thanks for the replies guys. #3 will be about 2.5x brighter than #2. That's a big jump... I guess I should just wait until thejoker has #3 in stock again?
That's what I would do, its worth the wait to get a quality product from a fourm member who will be able to help you with any issues that come up.

ADD:

Also worth mentioning that you could buy the PL520 diode/driver from DTR and then a 501B Host from Mrcrouse and throw it together yourself and end up with a 80mw(with 3 element/acrylic) or 100mw(with G2) single mode green laser for a little over your budget.
 
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Zhinkk

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That's what I would do, its worth the wait to get a quality product from a fourm member who will be able to help you with any issues that come up.
I think I'll do that, thanks man, I'm so indecisive. If anybody has other lasers that fit my budget, or any other opinions, please let me know :)
 

Rifter

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I think I'll do that, thanks man, I'm so indecisive. If anybody has other lasers that fit my budget, or any other opinions, please let me know :)
I edited my post above to add that you could always build one yourself, to get more of what you want, a more powerful PL520 laser.
 

mortuus

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You should get the 520 i have the 100mw version and the 80mw pen from laserbtb, at fresh batteries they both as bright so i would imagine the 150mw pen be a little brighter then 50mw but since you cant focus the pens i wouldnt buy so high pen really but its up to you, it will for sure be very bright tho.
 

Zhinkk

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Kevin replied to me from laserbtb and told me the duty cycle of the pen (#1) is 5s on 1s off. Which, in a way, is nice because I can get quick short bursts, but ehhh that could be annoying.

You should get the 520 i have the 100mw version and the 80mw pen from laserbtb, at fresh batteries they both as bright so i would imagine the 150mw pen be a little brighter then 50mw but since you cant focus the pens i wouldnt buy so high pen really but its up to you, it will for sure be very bright tho.
Yeah, the 50mW does sound like a good option for me, especially since it will be less affected by temperature and I want to use it on cold nights. However, do you know anything about the divergence? I've read that diode (#2 520nm) divergence will be worse than the DPSS laser (#3 100mW 532nm). On laserbtb, they list the 50mW 520nm as:


Range in darkness (m): 100-1000
M2 factor: <1.2
Beam divergence,full angle (mrad): <3.0
Beam Diameter at Aperture (mm): <2.5

Doesn't 1000m (so like 0.6miles) seem a little low for a laser I would want to use to point at stars/clouds? Would the 100mW DPSS laser from scifi lasers be better for this case?
 
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