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Thread: What laser to get for a budget of 500$?

  1. #1
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    Default What laser to get for a budget of 500$?

    i know that 500$ isnt a big budget
    i am just starting out with lasers and i need one that can run without a program, or me controlling it.
    i live in the united states
    this will be my only laser that i will be buying
    i would prefer a multi-colored laser that goes to the music
    i will not be changeing anything inside of the laser
    i know that you guys know alot more about this than i do, i would really appreciate some suggestions. Thanks!

    *edit*
    im looking for a laser that can impress people when they come into my dorm at school, so it doesnt have to be that powerful
    just looking to doing beam shows not so much graphics, because i wouldnt know how to do that
    Last edited by johnpoe12; 07-12-2010 at 23:13. Reason: more info

  2. #2
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    Default what i am thinking about


  3. #3
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    Default

    That laser you are linking to is suitable for about a venue that can hold 20ppl.

    how many people are planing on showing the laser for?
    If you are just going to have it in a small pub or in your own room that laser would do, although remember that is not a fullcolor laser as the blue is not blue, its a BLue-Ray diode with the color of Violet 405nm.

    If i where you i would spend those 500 on something else. Or save up so you have a budget of 1500 and then look for something in that pricerange instead.

    Laserworld.com has a terrible reputation but i guess in that pricerange and automatic stuff you are looking for they have some descent products.

  4. #4
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    Default

    No such thing as a free lunch, I'm afraid. And in this case there's not even a cheap lunch on offer. $500 will get you a decent green:

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/300mw-Green-DM...ht_1348wt_1137

    Are you doing graphics or beam shows? 404nm blue/violet does not make a very visible beam so isn't well-suited to the latter. As stated above, a much better bet is to save up and buy an RGB projector with a proper blue (445 or 473nm) - you will get better colour repro for graphics that way, too, unless your software can do custom palettes (Pangolin LD2000 can, but given your budget I assume that you aren't in the market for that).

    Also: to get the most from your laser you will want an ILDA interface - this will cost you about $700 (you could try spaghetti with a sound card which works out cheaper but people here swear by Pangolin, with Quickshow / Livequick their entry-level hardware-software).

    You need to accept the reality that laserising is a black-hole hobby that will suck your hard-earned cents up faster than you can earn 'em. So save now, and buy decent gear that's up to what you want it to do.

  5. #5
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    Default

    None of the lasers linked above would be legal to use for shows in the USA.

    Gene

  6. #6
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    Default Thanks!

    Thanks for the feedback! i am looking to doing beam shows

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phredy1 View Post
    None of the lasers linked above would be legal to use for shows in the USA.

    Gene
    Unless you're only doing shows for yourself, your friends or private, closed events where no admission money changes hands. The way I understand things, whether or not the show is public or commercial is what determines if the CDRH has jurisdiction.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElektroFreak View Post
    Unless you're only doing shows for yourself, your friends or private, closed events where no admission money changes hands. The way I understand things, whether or not the show is public or commercial is what determines if the CDRH has jurisdiction.
    I know for yourself you can do almost anything. For friends or the others, I'm not sure. I thought anytime it has anyone other than yourself, the CDRH laws must be followed. Maybe someone with more CDRH knowledge about this can give an opinion.

    Anyone know where the line is drawn for when CDRH becomes involved? I think it might be a good thing for us in the USA to know.

    Gene

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phredy1 View Post
    I know for yourself you can do almost anything. For friends or the others, I'm not sure. I thought anytime it has anyone other than yourself, the CDRH laws must be followed. Maybe someone with more CDRH knowledge about this can give an opinion.

    Anyone know where the line is drawn for when CDRH becomes involved? I think it might be a good thing for us in the USA to know.

    Gene
    While I'd have to look around for quotes it's been recently discussed here a few times.. The LEMs are protected by what we're discussing. Family members and guests can also attend LEMs I believe. CDRH rules and regs only cover lasers and laser systems entered into commerce which is why hobbyists can build systems of any kind without gov't approval. The CDRH regs cover both laser systems and display simultaneously and many of the rules seem interchangeable between the two. I'm sure dsli_jon would have this one covered..

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phredy1 View Post
    I know for yourself you can do almost anything. For friends or the others, I'm not sure. I thought anytime it has anyone other than yourself, the CDRH laws must be followed. Maybe someone with more CDRH knowledge about this can give an opinion.

    Anyone know where the line is drawn for when CDRH becomes involved? I think it might be a good thing for us in the USA to know.

    Gene

    If you are doing unpaid, private laser shows, you do not need a variance. But the other side of that coin is that the laser is not LEGAL to be sold here in the US. It is a little strange that it is legal to do private laser shows with equipment that is not legal to sell to anyone without a variance. The law states that it is the responsiblilty of the laser manufacturer not to sell any laser above 4.95mW to anyone without a variance. So if your package gets looked at by customs and you don't have a variance, you will not get your laser. I guess it's a risk you will have to take if you think it is worth it...

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