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When were laser pointers at their peak of popularity?

LaySir

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Am I right in thinking it was sometime in the 90s?
 



Hap

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I was actually going to say during the wicked lasers craze :eek:

-Alex
 

Rivem

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That's a difficult question. If we're talking about traditional pointers, I feel like if was still in the 2000s since they were a bit expensive in the '90s.

As far as the high power "pointers" that tend to be way more popular on the forum, I'd have to agree with Hap: the Wicked Lasers/Kipkay/YouTube laser craze.
 

LaySir

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I picked the 90s because it just seems like both from what I remember and in watching and reading back on things, that's when the traditional pointers seemed the most "in" and cool/hip for the general public.

It's interesting to look back on old wrestling episodes and clips from the 90s. Very frequently you would see the wrestlers with red dots (sometimes more than one at a time) bouncing around on their faces from people in the crowd pointing lasers at them.

I suppose this example in particular could also simply be a reflection of perhaps a less-strict policy on the part of local authorities and arena security, mixed with a time when the public seemed to have more of an edgy, "F authority / I'll do what I want" mentality. At least with wrestling crowds that is. ;)
 

Razako

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I'd say the 2007-2013ish period. It was back when wickedlasers was making all the headlines, everybody was building burning lasers inspired by kipkay, and scientific/tech magazines would always have adds for laserglow/wickedlasers. When the WL arctic first came out the hype was freaking HUGE! Now WL and Laserglow don't even ship >5mw pointers to the US anymore, and it seems like the public have almost grown bored with lasers. I don't know if the hobby has died that much 'by the numbers', but the hype just isn't there anymore. When anybody can go onto ebay and order a 1.5W burning 450nm for $50, lasers tend to lose a lot of their 'special factor'. It used to be you had to spend big money for a 300ish mw burning 532nm, or build your own burning red laser from dvd burners. All the negative news about pilots getting harassed also isn't helpful for the hobby. Many people are scared to even show their lasers off in public now out of fear that somebody will 'call the cops on the laser terrorist'.
 
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joeyss

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I'd say the 2007-2013ish period. It was back when wickedlasers was making all the headlines, everybody was building burning lasers inspired by kipkay, and scientific/tech magazines would always have adds for laserglow/wickedlasers. When the WL arctic first came out the hype was freaking HUGE! Now WL and Laserglow don't even ship >5mw pointers to the US anymore, and it seems like the public have almost grown bored with lasers. I don't know if the hobby has died that much 'by the numbers', but the hype just isn't there anymore. When anybody can go onto ebay and order a 1.5W burning 450nm for $50, lasers tend to lose a lot of their 'special factor'. It used to be you had to spend big money for a 300ish mw burning 532nm, or build your own burning red laser from dvd burners. All the negative news about pilots getting harassed also isn't helpful for the hobby. Many people are scared to even show their lasers off in public now out of fear that somebody will 'call the cops on the laser terrorist'.
2010 I was in ocean city NJ and a mall on the board walk had greens I paid 40 for one that said 30mW ( it hit 37mW on my lpm with good batts in.) They had so many in the mall.


i seen so many green lasers , almost got hit in my eye once. Lets just say thats the laser that gave me the laser bug.
 

Encap

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Depends upon what you mean by popular?

I would guess there have never been as many in private hands as there are today.
 

RB astro

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Depends upon what you mean by popular?

I would guess there have never been as many in private hands as there are today.
This is true, I think more people have them now but it's more 'underground' so to speak.
It started to rise when WL went all out in their adverts.
That's what got me to join LPF, that and the Styro vids....

:yh:
 

GSS

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This is true, I think more people have them now but it's more 'underground' so to speak.
It started to rise when WL went all out in their adverts.
That's what got me to join LPF, that and the Styro vids....

:yh:
Other than the initial popularity and bombardment and coolness of red dot lasers in the 90's which gave the impression that sniper had his sight on you I never even seen or heard before I joined this forum a little over a year and a half ago about greens and visible beams. The red dot lasers were everywhere, from convenience stores to pet shops but iv'e never came across a green one in my physical travels even today.
I got on a laptop for the first time maby 2 years ago and found this forum by chance from a video of a Rayrob build phaser.
Don't really know where i'm going with this but when I joined it was a very active forum on a hobby I had no clue about but in the short time iv'e been here is where I started seeing for the first time news reports of airplane pointing and the now popular green which might be peaking??
Also saw prices cut in half or more on all high power WL. Kinda feel bad seeing vets post how much they spent years ago.
 
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Benm

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I guess there are two periods that made lasers popular toys for big audiences:

First of all in the 90s when the red diodes became really cheap, and lasers found their way into toys, but also affordable tools like levels and gun sights.

In the 00s we got the afforable green DPSS lasers that did that all over again, albeit more in the entertaining market than the tool one.

I suppose the 405 and 445 nm lasers were a big hit with laser enthousiasts, but not with the mainstream public, with 405 being hardly visible and 445 a bit to expensive.

There could be another wave though, if we finally get direct diode greens (or yellows, oranges, visible blues) at very affordable cost (<$1 per diode or so).
 

Crazlaser

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@Benm

A 500nm diode would be nice. Along with 605nm, 612nm, 680nm, 417nm, 490nm (1 watt), 590nm, 560nm.
 

Benm

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Basically yes, any colour that becomes available at an affordable price could be a gain in popularity.

As of now the <$10 unit market only offers 650nm, 532 nm dpss and the hardly visible 405 nm blu ray pointers. If somehow a new color like orange, yellow or cyan would become available as cheap diodes that would be a selling point for the lower priced end.

Novelty is a pretty big factor there, having something noone has seen before remains cool, especially if you can have it for funfare prices ;)
 







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