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Ortur Laser Master 2 Full Review: Best Budget Laser Engraver?

Ortur Laser Master 2 Full Review: Best Budget Laser Engraver?

Laser engraving is one of the best ways to add a personal touch to your projects. From logos on business cards to initials on cutting boards you'll always find a new use for a laser. But not in a case of laser engraver from Ortur. We review the Ortur Laser Master Engraver version 2 and see if it can take the crown for the best budget laser engraver.


What Materials Can ORTUR Laser Master 2 Cut?  

Ortur provides a breakdown of what it can laser engrave and cut.


From my testing, I found that if you want to do some serious laser cutting then diode lasers will not be good a great solution. But, if you want to laser engrave then this is an awesome option. Specifically, I do lots of laser engraving on hardwoods, plywood, cardboard, Kraft paper, and even stones.


Acrylic is also supported, just make sure you are working in a well-ventilated area since the fumes are horrible. And never laser engrave or cut PVC, that makes hydrogen chloride gas.

And now to the fun stuff. Here are a few tests that I did with this unit. First, a fun pig butcher design on cutting boards. You could just as easily engrave a name, initials or even an entire recipe on the surface.


The second is Batman comic book cover. I edited the file to make it just black and white.


Cardboard projects are always fun to put together. You can get dark engraves and the uniform surface makes for an awesome laser engraving material.


The next is the largest raster engrave that I did on plywood. Lightburn uses dithering to mimic a greyscale effect. Dithering using tiny dots to simulate shades of grey. The entire engrave of the 10x10 portrait wound up just shy of four hours.


Laser Software

Having a laser is one thing. Sending a design to a laser is another. This use to be pretty difficult and hacky but Ortur gives you a couple of great solutions.

Laser GRBL

Laser GRBL is the software provided by Ortur. It is an open-source project with lots of support online from a great developer community.


Lightburn

Lightburn is the software which many people use on their machines. Lightburn comes with a full 30-day trial and then is $40 to pick up the G-Code license. And it works both Mac and PC.



Main Features Review

Work Area

The Ortur Laser Master Engraver 2 steps up the overall work area to 400 x 430 mm. This is one of the largest work areas on these type of budget machines. This increased work area over the first version is a huge upgrade.


Construction

The engraver is built with extruded aluminum rails and hardened plastic supports. While this won’t win any strength competitions, you won’t need a robust engraver. Unlike a CNC, which has constant stress on the frame from carving against the wood, the only stress on a laser is the actual motion of the gantry.


I found that even when I ran it at its top speed of 3000mm/min (1.9 in/sec) it held up fine, and could still produce very detailed engraves. The movement comes from stepper motors and timing belts.


A nice addition is the synchronized y-axis shaft. A metal rod runs the length of the x-axis and keeps the opposing ends of the engraver aligned. I have found that some engravers will come out of alignment when running at higher speeds. The rod keeps everything locked into space.

Laser Power

The Ortur Laser Master Engraver 2 is advertised with a 7W, 15W or 20W option. My review unit was 15W, but you need to know, that this refers to the amount of power going INTO the laser module instead of the power of the laser coming OUT.


The actual power of the 15W version is roughly 4.5W according to the manufactures website. 

Safety

There are several safety features included with the Ortur. The biggest being if there is any interruption to the machine the laser will cut off. This could be from bumping the frame, to a loss of signal from the computer. Be careful, if you forget to set my PC to not sleep and had several long engraves stop midway through.

The biggest drawbacks in terms of safety are due to its enclosure, because it is not fully enclosed and doesn't have fans built-in with a larger air duct in the back for exhaust. Even though a diode laser is much less powerful, you always run the risk of fires and complications due to smoke and fumes.

While using make sure and keep a fire extinguisher around and work in a well-ventilated area.

Electronics

The motherboard is listed as 32 bits with STM32 MCU. Compared to an 8-bit board you get an increased power range. This allows the beam to be controlled with finer accuracy.


Raster engraves of grayscale images demonstrate how useful this can be.


Conclusion

So you’ve made it through this review but you really just want to know if this would work for you. Like with all tools, it depends.

If you are looking to get into the world of lasers for not much money this is an awesome entry point. While diode lasers aren’t nearly as powerful, they start to open you up to the possibilities, especially if you are looking to engrave.

And for a diode laser machine moving forward this will be the one I recommend. It’s at a great price point paired with a large work area.








ORTUR Laser Master 2 32-bit Motherboard Laser Engraving Machine 400 x 430mm Large Engraving Area Fast Speed High Precision Laser Engraver


$442.08


$268.99















ORTUR Laser Master 2 32-bit Motherboard Laser Engraving Machine 400 x 430mm Large Engraving Area Fast Speed High Precision Laser Engraver


$326.1


$208.99











ORTUR Laser Master 2 32-bit Motherboard Laser Engraving Machine 400 x 430mm Large Engraving Area Fast Speed High Precision Laser Engraver


$278.98


$174.99




Ortur Laser Master:









Ortur Laser Master 7W Desktop Laser Engraver Laser Engraving Machine 32-bit Motherboard LaserGRBL Control Software Easy to Install


$255.08


$155.99











Ortur Laser Master 15W Desktop Laser Engraver Cutter Laser Engraving Machine 32-bit Motherboard LaserGRBL Control Software Easy to Install


$302.16


$182.99











Ortur Laser Master 20w Desktop Laser Engraver Cutter Laser Engraving Machine 32-bit Motherboard LaserGRBL Control Software Easy to Install


$408.45


$245.99




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