*Updated* New blue 301 high power Laser from GearBest - Firestarter

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keltex78
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*Updated* New blue 301 high power Laser from GearBest - Firestarter

Blue model purchased as well: see my impressions in post #11 below:

http://budgetlightforum.com/node/39834#comment-778629

 

I just received a parcel from GearBest, containing, among other things, a new "<5mW" 301-style 18650 Green Laser pointer:

http://www.gearbest.com/led-flashlights/pp_106566.html - $7.22

I was a bit confused at first, initially reporting the laser as DOA, but found that on this device, the cell is inserted with the positive (+) pole to the end cap. After installing the cell correctly, the laser functioned surprisingly well. So far, I've been able to pop a lot of balloons very easily; they will pop INSTANTLY when this laser is pointed at them. I've tried to light matches, but haven't been successful yet. Although the laser is labeled and sold as 5mW, I doubt this. Cool

I also have an old DX <35mW green laser to compare against. The DX laser will pop balloons, but you have to hold the laser steady, and very close to the balloon for several seconds. From two AAA Alkaline cells at 3.05V, I get a tailcap reading of .25A, for a total of ~.75W. This 301 Laser, from a freshly charged 18650, at 4.2V, shows a tailcap current of .34A, for a total of 1.4W. I don't know how efficient these are at input power vs actual output power, but this is roughly twice the wattage of the DX pointer.

The 301 has a proper tailcap lockout key switch, but the keys are very cheaply made; one already had the plastic bow break off; I can fix with super glue, but still...

The battery tube is also separated so it can be used with a single primary CR123A cell, but it would also be a good candidate for use with a 18350 cell, if the extra 30mm is a big deal... In my case, this is a good candidate for my surplus laptop pulls, as the flat top cells work well.

So feel free to post if anyone is aware of any resistor/pot mods that can be made to this unit... I'd like to have something capable of starting a fire, if possible!Laughing

<Edit to add further observations>

Okay: So far, I still haven't been able to start a fire. I've been able to get a few wisps of smoke from the tip of a match, but it still won't ignite. Although it seems that heat sinking should be fair, I suspect the unit may be heating up quickly causing power to decline. Outside last night, shooting it against the wall of a shed, I noticed that the spot was very bright, but within a few seconds, would dim to a notably less bright state. I'm afraid to take this unit apart as I don't want to risk damaging it, but I don't see a lot of room for improvement in the heat sinking anyway. Everything appears to be tightly press-fit with metal-to-metal contact.

Popping balloons is easy with opaque balloons; I tried with a more transparent balloon and had trouble getting it to pop...


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

Edited by: keltex78 on 06/26/2015 - 10:23
Halo...
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Absolutely not “5mW”. Nowhere near it. Very common for green lasers to be sold as “5mW” but actually be much higher.
Be careful. You need safety glasses. Do you have any?

Resistor / pot moding is just likely to overheat, burn out the laser diode. In the past there might have been some lasers that actually were capable of higher power but were set lower.

apt323
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Thanks for the information. I ordered one! Smile

I ordered this one from gearbest – link

Its the only laser I have but you can see the beam in the day light if that means anything special. Havent tried to burn anything with it though.

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I am going to pick one of these up at this price – thanks for the short writeup/review Smile

had a few points – came to $7.05 shipped via epost with tracking Smile

Would you mind keeping the wrong flashlight?
Best wish, May
Tmart service team

 

Soumil wrote:

PLEASE HELP ME GEARBEsT! IM LITERALLY CRYING!

 

Halo...
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Don’t try to burn things without real safety glasses. Not worth it. You may not notice slow, minor damage to your vision but its still happening.

Guys seriously, not worth it at all.

keltex78
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Trust ME! I'm wearing safety glasses! I don't want anything to do with cumulative vision loss due to playing with a toy...

I do know this makes a nice visible beam into the night sky; I'm looking forward to a cloudy night so I can shine a beam in fog, or at least try to make a dot on the clouds...

It burns holes through a 1.1 mil black plastic trash bag, and cuts through a black plastic grocery sack easily.


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

downlinx
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I agree with HALO, you really need laser safety glasses as the chinese do not have any regulation on these small lasers. you really could do some damage.

BLF Community Battery Pull Thread http://budgetlightforum.com/node/32720

jmpaul320
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which glasses to buy?

Would you mind keeping the wrong flashlight?
Best wish, May
Tmart service team

 

Soumil wrote:

PLEASE HELP ME GEARBEsT! IM LITERALLY CRYING!

 

Halo...
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Glasses that provide real proper protection cost more than the laser…
Eagle Pair 190-540nm

I’ve seen testing that showed uvex sct-orange glasses offers some protection from 532 green lasers but that was awhile ago. Not certain it still holds true. Uvex sct-orange are not meant as laser glasses. The dyes used might have changed since they were originally tested and it may even change a bit from batch to batch. 532nm green is close to the cut off of what they cover so even a slight change in the dye would be a problem.

downlinx
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jmpaul320 wrote:
which glasses to buy?

I got a pair of ThorLabs pretty cheap and I really like them. they are very comfortable.

BLF Community Battery Pull Thread http://budgetlightforum.com/node/32720

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jmpaul320 wrote:
which glasses to buy?

Proper 532nm wavelength preventing laser safety goggles is in need.
I get a very special 5mW APC green laser pointer. It just keeps permanent 5mW output power emission in all conditions.

This is a totally safe and class IIIa laser. if output power is higher than 30mW, just be cautious and take safety measures as well. Enjoy the laser fun freely.

keltex78
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I've since bought and received the same laser but in blue from Gearbest. This unit IS a firestarter! But it's fairly scary as well, so use caution! Always wear glasses!

http://www.gearbest.com/led-flashlights/pp_105699.html

This model is slightly shorter than the green model I already have.

When I received this LASER, the beam woudn't focus into a tight spot, so I had to disassemble the head and adjust the lens focus. Now I'm able to get the light focused into a beam att longer distances, while still being able to focus to a closer point for the burning/fire starting. SO WEAR YOUR SAFETY GLASSES!

I was concerned because I couldn't see the dot at first. When I removed my safety glasses though, I could see the large purple blob of light on the wall. Apparently, this light is VERY close to the 400nm UV side of the blue spectrum. Outside, the light creates a deep purple hazy blur when shined against a remote wall. Very little light is visible when using with my UV/blue filtering glasses. The beam is only barely visible in the air, but is interesting when directed onto the trees, as many of the leaves fluoresce a bright red, making blue/red/orange flashes depending on what the beam hits.

This light will make wood smoke and blacken when focused to the smallest possible point. It will burn through paper, and immediately make any black plastic smoke, etching lines across the surface. I inadvertently allowed the beam to hit my hand, and immediately noticed the heat on my skin. After several tries, I was successfully able to get a match to ignite when held in the beam. I was also able to pop a balloon from across the room, while hand-holding the laser. So you had best be wearing your safety glasses!

The green laser is much more impressive due to it's brighter spot and more visible beam. This laser is more dangerous as it's in a more dangerous wavelength, that is also more difficult to judge due to your reduced ability to perceive that portion of the spectrum. So always wear your SAFETY GLASSES!


If you want a blue laser just for the fun-factor, I would recommend you avoid this high-power 301 and purchase this unit instead:

http://www.gearbest.com/led-flashlights/pp_107368.html

It has a much bluer color (True blue, less purple/UV) and a more visible and pronounced spot. For $3.79, it's a good option. Even though it has a much weaker emission, it looks more impressive due to the higher visibility.


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

apt323
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They have a red laser there also. Have you ordered that one yet?

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I’m a total dummy when it comes to lasers, but if you don’t point it at your face ever, how does it harm your eyes?
Honestly wondering.

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hint: the bright dot you see is the reflected light Wink

the more a surface reflects (mirror / chrome) – the less LaZ0rpower is needed to cause damage…

PLEASE NOTE
i do not work in "reviews, deals and codes" for the time being
maybe M4D M4X will return one day, but until then:

THANK YOU FOR YEARS OF YOUR SUPPORT AND FRIENDLY CONTACTS!

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So what about some of the ridiculously bright flashlights we buy/build?

I got a X60vn, it’s 6500 really well focused lumens, the hotspot on turbo is painful to look at from less than ~3m away. Is that causing similar damage, or is laser light different because of it’s coherence?

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http://www.hdwarrior.co.uk/2009/05/09/led-light-damage/
(which illustrates the difference between diffuse blue sky light and the point source focused on the retina imaging a LED/laser)

https://www.google.com/search?q=laser+led+eye+damage%3F&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-... (generally, read a few pages of results)

and do an image search with the above page to see illustrations

and ask your library to get this for you:
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0891584915001586

doi:10.1016/j.freeradbiomed.2015.03.034

Abstract from http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0891584915001586

Quote:

Spectra of “white LEDs” are characterized by an intense emission in the blue region of the visible spectrum, absent in daylight spectra. This blue component and the high intensity of emission are the main sources of concern about the health risks of LEDs with respect to their toxicity to the eye and the retina. The aim of our study was to elucidate the role of blue light from LEDs in retinal damage…. We observed a loss of photoreceptors and the activation of caspase-independent apoptosis, necroptosis, and necrosis. A wavelength dependence of the effects was observed. Phototoxicity of LEDs on the retina is characterized by a strong damage of photoreceptors and by the induction of necrosis.

Halo...
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keithd wrote:
I’m a total dummy when it comes to lasers, but if you don’t point it at your face ever, how does it harm your eyes?
Honestly wondering.

It depends on the power and color. High power blue may do some eye damage even without ever pointing it at anything reflective or shiny, due to whats called blue-light-hazard. Photo receptors in our eyes don’t undergo their normal recovery process when hit with bright blue light.

And any color can damage your eyes if you hit something reflective, shiny, glossy. Indoors there are lots of shiny surfaces around. Look around, it can be glass, metal, plastic. Doorknob, metal on a lamp, plastic front panel on dvd player, drinking cup, soda bottle, a plastic pen, glossy fedex box, glossy candy wrapper or bag of chips, hell the surface of my furniture is pretty shiny. When you go into higher powers any glossy surface could hurt you if it happens to be at the right angle to reflect right back at you. Outdoors you have retroreflectors used in car tail lights, road markers, streetsigns. Retroreflectors actually are designed to always reflect right back at you regardless of the angle. You might also have them on the back of running sneakers.

keltex78
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apt323 wrote:
They have a red laser there also. Have you ordered that one yet?

Nope. I just wanted something I could start fires with and I got that one…
So I may get the red one sometime just to round out the set…


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

apt323
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keltex78 wrote:
apt323 wrote:
They have a red laser there also. Have you ordered that one yet?

Nope. I just wanted something I could start fires with and I got that one…
So I may get the red one sometime just to round out the set…

I ordered the red one. You made me nervous about the blue one as I do not know anything about lasers and have no eye protection either at this time.

hank
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keltex78
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The blue one does scare me… It’s so powerful it pops balloons instantly, and can light a match on fire, but is so far in the UV that it’s less visible… A dangerous combination.


Keepin’ the “B” in BLF

Don wrote:
It sounds like the XM LEDs won’t really be suitable for flashlight use. Pity…

will34
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What do you think the real power rating of the blue laser might be, over 1,500mW? Funny how they are rated 5mW in order to be legal to ship.

I had a 2,000mW wicked laser and it took a couple seconds to pop black balloons, if this one pops them instantly then we are talking about a serious high power laser.

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405nm bluray lasers can focus to smaller point because they are “single mode” diodes. A smaller more concentrated spot has effectively more energy in that tiny spot so it heats faster, pops ballons, lights matches. High power blue 445nm lasers are “multi-mode” diodes and can’t focus as small. Bluray diodes are single mode because are actually intended for bluray drives and single mode is required for that. Whereas high power blue 445nm is used just as a light source for projectors, single mode isn’t needed there.

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Thanks for the explanations Halo.

hank
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I came across a picture that makes the point Halo explained in text above:

Quote:
the human eye’s visual response peaks in the region of the spectrum that corresponds to wavelengths of green light.

…the eye’s colour response to green light is so strong that if you looked at the spot on a wall produced by a 1 milliwatt green laser pointer as compared with some 1 milliwatt red laser pointers, the green laser pointer spot would look approximately 30 times brighter.

As you can see the blue and red regions at either end of the spectrum elicit the lowest visual response, i.e. they appear the least bright to our eyes.

Quote:
Incredibly, the eye’s colour response to green light is so strong that if you looked at the spot on a wall produced by a 1 milliwatt green laser pointer as compared with some 1 milliwatt red laser pointers, the green laser pointer spot would look approximately 30 times brighter.

Note it’s a bell curve. Both the red and the violet-blue end of the curve are low — our visual receptors in our eyes are very insensitive to visible light at both ends of that curve.

But the blue-violet photons we barely see do pack enough energy to knock electrons out of their orbit (that’s what makes fluorescence work) and kill retinal cells photochemically, and the infrared photons we don’t see at all carry enough heat energy to burn.

“With great power goes great responsibility.”

Yeah, but you can buy great power for $10 on the Internet.
Responsibility? hmmmm ….

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I got this laser last week from gearbest and am deeply disappointed with the performance. Compared to a 50mW green laser it is extremely weak, and it can’t be compared to my 2,000mW Wickedlaser arctic s2 (this laser burns skin). Even at pitch dark it is difficult to see the beam, and the dot has less reach than a cheap red laser pointer. At 50m the dot simply disappears.

Tried bypassing the tailswitch, tried several batteries with the same result. Direct exposure to a black sheet of paper makes a barely warm spot, it won’t burn anything. Also the color is more purple than blue.

I don’t know if GB changed the stock or if they sent the wrong Laser, but it is nothing like what you guys have described here.

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will34 wrote:
I got this laser last week from gearbest and am deeply disappointed with the performance. Compared to a 50mW green laser it is extremely weak, and it can't be compared to my 2,000mW Wickedlaser arctic s2 (this laser burns skin). Even at pitch dark it is difficult to see the beam, and the dot has less reach than a cheap red laser pointer. At 50m the dot simply disappears. Tried bypassing the tailswitch, tried several batteries with the same result. Direct exposure to a black sheet of paper makes a barely warm spot, it won't burn anything. Also the color is more purple than blue. I don't know if GB changed the stock or if they sent the wrong Laser, but it is nothing like what you guys have described here.

Which one did you get? There's a few different colors/wavelengths linked/discussed above.

I have the Blue 405nm version, & as mentioned it needs some focus tuning to get it to perform well.

I could not get it to perform as well as keltex78 described, but it could differ from the one he was sent.

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Maybe the GearBest is such a powerful site. I can see its advertisement everywhere. Is it trustworthy?

Smile everyday, then the God will take care of you!

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Caroline wrote:
Maybe the GearBest is such a powerful site. I can see its advertisement everywhere.

Not on BLF anymore...   Wink

Caroline wrote:
Is it trustworthy?

Check out this link and see:

Rating: Gearbest.com [AVOID]   Shocked

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Caroline wrote:
Maybe the GearBest is such a powerful site. I can see its advertisement everywhere. Is it trustworthy?

You decide.

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