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Jetlasers PL-E Mini 520nm 1W review - WARNING: Pic Heavy!

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Hey dear LPF community,

Got a new Jetlasers PL-E Mini 520nm green 1W unit.
link: PL-E mini 520nm Green Laser

Pretty sure you all know the Jetlasers as one of the best laser makers around. I might add, they have the very best customer service I have ever experienced (Thanks, Gray, if you're reading this!).

Placed my order on April 19, received by May 8. The unit itself costed $270, 2 pairs of safety goggles $35 + $39, the EMS shipping to Russia $38, total $382.

The package came wrapped in generous amount of bubble wrap and consisted of two Jetlasers proprietary boxes stacked one onto another, one contained the new laser, my repaired unit (I took it out for photo to avoid confusion) purchased previously, a charger (I selected no batteries but it was included anyway), a lanyard for the laser, a qualification certificate and a warranty card. No manual was included but the operation is exactly the same as PL-E Pro. The other box had the goggles.


The laser itself was packed into an antistatic bag wrapped with bubble wrap.




The new PL-E Mini host is similar to its big brother Pro in nearly every detail except being smaller in every aspect. It's just over 23cm long, 27 to 34mm in diameter and weighs 342 grams empty.

I like the “PL-E Mini” painted on the side, as well as battery polarity reminder. The mild anti-slip knurling on the grip is a nice improvement over my PL-E Pro host. Also, the tailcap seems to be the only part that can be taken off.





Overall, I like the look and feel of the smaller version much more and it is MUCH smaller and lighter to be taken with you.

Here are some pics next to my PL-E Pro, just so you completely understand the difference.




And compared to a bunch of other stuff: 501b build by SciFi (and rebuilt by grainde, thanks!), Nitecore MH27UV flashlight and 18650 and 16340 batteries, just for reference.






The build quality is by far superior to any other laser I have ever seen, feels almost like a tank. Never want to find out if it survives battery explosion though. Also, will keep it out of rain or whatever.

It takes, in my case of 520nm wavelength, two 16340/18350 cells. And yes, it does work on a single 18650 too, though the output seems several times dimmer then. The laser is specified to work on 8V, so the runtime is pretty short. Under 10 munites on my 2*650mAh, I guess.

AFAIC, it is only available in mechanical switch and push button tailcap, which is perfectly fine with me. So basically, you push the tailcap button to power the unit on and push again to lock it out. The double red LED indicator fires up once it's on. Then press the smaller side button for momentary on or the bigger one for constant on. In my opinion, the momentary on is the feature every laser should have, as well as the internal focusing mechanism, so you no longer have to stick your fingers into the way of the beam. It seems to be focused properly when the "beam" mark is inline with the button and the top groove, which is nice and convenient.

Sorry guys, I have no LPM, so I can't properly measure its output. Here are some beamshots instead :)



(not actually seen like that indoors, as the entire room gets flooded with green, and in goggles I can barely even see the dot)
This pic is closer to reality:


And now the fun part. Lights out!







The beam it blazes through the night is incredibly bright and strong, nothing like I've contemplated before.

As you can see, a lot of green light is still spilt around, even though the beam is rather far from the wall.


This is what it looks like compared to PL-E Pro 445nm @ 1.6+ W:


(actually I thought 1W green should appear much brighter)

200mW vs 1000mW:


Oh, and this is what it looks like on a single 18650:


Surpisingly, it fits perfectly into Nitecore MH27UV holster that I didn't use anyway! Thus integrates neatly into my backpack waist webbing. If anyone cares about that, consider this a huge plus.





Also, I believe I should say a couple of words on goggles. I've ordered 2 pairs as I felt I needed an upgrade. The ones Jetlasers sells are nice EaglePairs. The slimmer one is OD5 for 190-540nm, and the slip-over is OD4 for 190-540 & 900-1700nm. In fact, I believe the slim one fits nicer, it feels more covered. The slip-over fits too oddly over my prescription glasses to feel protected in them, leaving noticeable gaps above and below my eyes. Without the glasses both goggles appear fine though. The protection is great, so strong that the dot is barely seen, giving me a hard time focusing the lasers for burning.



Thanks for reading!
 
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paul1598419

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That was a very good review with more than enough photos. It looks like a fine pointer and I hope you are able to enjoy it for years to come.
 

BobMc

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Love all the pics, great beam shots. Looks like a great laser, nice read. Looks like you got a nice collection started. Enjoy that puppie. :)
 

Cel

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Nice unit, that green light surely is bright! :beer:
Lovely color.

I would just add that the pictures should've been resized, they are too large to view.
 

dden4012

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Is that foil in the cap? I almost ruined my mini forgetting about the rubber cap. Lucky I was quick enough to realize what was happening.
 

Razako

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Nice review and pictures, glad to see you like the laser.
 
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Thanks everyone, glad you like my first review! Sorry for slow response, I've been away for some time. Never noticed any difficulties with large pics from my desktop nor my phone but will resize anyway for you. I actually feel I should edit some parts of the review, as after 3 weeks I got to know the laser better, and I like it even more. So, please feel free to ask questions about the unit and suggest more details you believe I should have covered in the review!
 
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Is that foil in the cap? I almost ruined my mini forgetting about the rubber cap. Lucky I was quick enough to realize what was happening.
Yes, there is a piece of foil on the inside. I take it, the foil wasn't included in earlier versions? I actually took the cap off the first day and never put it back. If Jetlasers had LaserBTB-type shutter safety, I'd give it 11/10 :)
 

Alaskan

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Very nice, excellent photo's and your English is impeccable. Except for some Chinese, only thing harder than learning English when your native language is Russian, is the reverse. My wife's brother is native Russian, but I cannot have a conversation with him yet, still learning.

Regarding the shutter, that would be a nice addition, but building one which won't wear out, I have a Laserglow Aries with a bad shutter. I like the idea of having one too, even one you twist which will stay open for 1 minute and then close on its own, I suppose a wind-up mechanism could do that but probably prone to problems.
 
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Very nice, excellent photo's and your English is impeccable. Except for some Chinese, only thing harder than learning English when your native language is Russian, is the reverse. My wife's brother is native Russian, but I cannot have a conversation with him yet, still learning.

Regarding the shutter, that would be a nice addition, but building one which won't wear out, I have a Laserglow Aries with a bad shutter. I like the idea of having one too, even one you twist which will stay open for 1 minute and then close on its own, I suppose a wind-up mechanism could do that but probably prone to problems.
Thanks Alaskan, particularly glad you find my English that good. So ironic that the more we learn, the more our knowledge seems to us, you know, flawed :) Good luck with your Russian!

As for the shutter, I now think it might not be that good of an idea. Can't say for sure, never had a laser like that.
 




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