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Laserbee I review

Brett

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I've been using my laserbee for a couple of weeks now.  It was the most anticipated and also the most exciting out of all the Christmas presents I bought for myself this year...and I can tell you right now, I bought a lot of laser equipment during the later half of last month and also this month so far.  I knew having an LPM (and in particular, the wide band Laserbee) would revolutionize my laser research, and in so doing, up the ante and boost the fun quotient.  And it certainly has.  I recently restored one of my damaged DPSS lasers, and not only is it working again, it is running at nearly 3x its original specifications.  If you think having a laser power meter is something you can put off, or consider to be just a luxury...think again.  It's a necessity if you are interested in doing any type of research, or if you hope to have a chance to someday contribute something rather than just copying off of the newest trends in the hobby or merely sitting around being spoon fed information by one of the "gurus".  

I had been using my Laserbee I in the usual manner for a few days....seeing how close my guesses were on the lasers I have sitting around the lab, then recording their various stable power levels etc.  On its green backlit LCD screen, the Laserbee shows the current power it is reading on the top line in mw, and the peak power on the bottom line.  After those first few days of trying out the basic functions of this LPM, Wannaburn suggested that I might be crazy if I hadn't tried out the feature that allows you to perform datalogging to a Windows PC via the serial port (or USB by way of an adapter).  Wannaburn was right, being the DPSS jedi he is, and so I decided to put off this review until I tried out that function.  I now see that the versatility to perform datalogging is (or should be) the major selling point of this device.  It's certainly handy as a quick little 9v laser checker to make sure a unit is up to spec....however, with datalogging, you can use this LPM to do real science.

Here's a picture of the laserbee I, 9v power source, serial adapter, and thermopile (this makes it capable of measuring multiple wavelengths, unlike other LPMs)
 

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Brett

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Here is a photo of the screen, showing the main window of the Laserbee power meter interface software. You can see here that you now have current, average, and max display simultaneously visible, plus the option to continuously log to a text file.
 

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Brett

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Here's a pic of the comma delimited text file dumped by a datalog of my 15mw Aixiz labby running for around 4.4 minutes. You can see that as the software plots time in seconds (very useful) you can see the change in power along with the change in time...tonight my laser seemed to stabilize at 32mw. Very cool.
 

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Brett

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I have several difficult DPSS projects currently in the works. This instrument with be the centerpiece from which my progress will (hopefully) radiate.

Excellent A+++ 10+ out of 10.

thanks Jerry.

-Brett
 

lasersbee

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Hey Brett... thanks for the great review...
I gather that you are satisfied with your LaserBee I... ;)

Did you know that after you save a power reading file.... you can
Graph the (comma delimited) data...

You just click on the "File" button... then click on "Graph Log File"...
then choose the file you want to have Graphed...

If you then want to print that graph to your printer... click on the
"Print" button on the top left corner of the Graph... :cool:

Jerry
 

Brett

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lasersbee said:
Hey Brett... thanks for the great review...
I gather that you are satisfied with your LaserBee I... ;)

Did you know that after you save a power reading file.... you can
Graph the (comma delimited) data...

You just click on the "File" button... then click on "Graph Log File"...
then choose the file you want to have Graphed...

If you then want to print that graph to your printer... click on the
"Print" button on the top left corner of the Graph... :cool:

Jerry
Oh, no...I didn't know you could graph it within the program! That's great. I was going to just open up Excel and Import it, but this is even more convenient. Thanks...I literally just tried out the datalogging a few minutes before I wrote the review. Yeah, I figured you already knew I was satisfied with the Laserbee a few days ago when all those posts went up with pics showing me excitedly trying it on 3 different lasers! I'm in my 30's, but when it comes to a new science/engineering toy, I'm still a kid at heart.

-Brett
 

lasersbee

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I'm older than you... but I think I'm a bigger kid........... ::)

I love my toys.. ;)

Jerry
 

Brett

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lasersbee said:
I'm older than you... but I think I'm a bigger kid........... ::)

I love my toys.. ;)

Jerry
You'd be surprised (who might be the bigger kid)!! I still ride a skateboard, even though my knees and ankle joints are falling apart.

Anyway, the graphing function is great!
 

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I thought you would enjoy the datalogging ;)

A while back I purchased my LaserBee I, and needless to say its one of my favorite tools. I was hesitant at first when I bought it, then realised all of the uses I would have for it.

I now use it far more than my Coherent LaserCheck, mainly with the ability to see the variations in power for DPSS. On a couple of  532nm setups ive worked on, proper alignment and best performance of the lasers would have not been possible with the LaserCheck. And without spending big dollars have the ability to log without having to write down measurements in pen :-/

I have also found that screen shots of the graphs are very usefull when edited in Photoshop. Simply drag the two graphs (ex before and after) into Photoshop, copy one of them and paste it over the other. Then make the second layer semi transparent and you can overlay the after over the before. This is a nice option when comparing your results
 




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