I will do a short and sweet review of my recently purchased (second-hand) LaserBTB 405nm 100mw HL405 laser! First a few things I want to point out; The safety, the quality and the business end (power).
The safety aspect of this laser is impeccable as LaserBTB boasts their FDA compliance with a front beam shutter, key switch and the push button toggle on/off. These features make it a perfect first for anyone wanting to step into the hobby of handheld lasers. Needing 3 different steps to get a beam emission you should have plenty of time to make sure you are keeping it pointed in a safe direction; away from your eyes, other persons eyes, airplanes and did I mention your EYES?
Quality is important when you are in any hobby that comes to mind, but a challenging one in the laser hobby as many items are being imported from China that have gone through little to no QA stages, but LaserBTB has aced this section as well. The host of the HL405 is sturdy and has a pretty good weight to it for the size being only 7 inches long and right at under an inch in diameter. The shutter turns smooth, no faults or tightness; the focusing knob right behind it does the same. In fact they are almost so effortless to turn sometimes you will close the shutter while adjusting the focus of your beam; If the threading on the’s parts were visible I’m sure it would look acceptable just like the battery tail cap. Key switch works as expected but the keys are not flimsy and thin as aluminum foil (cough cough Laser 301); keys remind me of a selector switch on industrial machines at work. Lastly is the push button it’s a bright red so it is easy to find when needed in the dark, giving good contrast around the black anodized host. I have noticed that I can half press the toggle button to get a momentary emission as well, something I enjoy doing sometimes. Also, worth mentioning is the red LED that light’s up while the pointer is emitting.. it will light up during a momentary press or when switched on, and stays lit til you press the button again, or deactivate the key. I hope I haven’t missed anything in this department but I would give an overall rating of quality a 9/10 Excellent!
Last order of business but the most important to the majority of us hobbyist is the power! Don’t forget please with power comes responsibility and even 100mw of 405nm can damage your eyes or blind you! You must wear protection when using this laser especially when burning or in your home. It may not look as bright as other wavelength but the power is still there, and it absorbs very easily for quick burning. It’s rated at 100mw from LaserBTB but on my Hyperion Argentum laser power meter it reads at 145mw max and around 130mw after 3-5mins which should place it right at spec considering this meter may be a little over spec. This is plenty of 405 to burn any basic things like tape, rubber, black plastics, wood etc. It’s certainly a fun little laser.
The dot at 5 meters was 4.23mm through goggles, it’s a very decent size and I can guarantee the divergence will convert greatly. Overall this laser is recommended to any buyers in the market for a first time laser and are set on getting a 405nm, as usual keep safe and wear your safety goggles! Critics and comments are welcome.