Clean cutting, accuracy, and precision! That’s what you get with laser cutting and engraving machines. These tools offer you endless possibilities to create different things. If you are a DIY enthusiast, you can create simple boxes and engrave graphics deep into the wood. If you are a business looking to build complex 3-D objects or engrave logos, then you’ll also love the magic that these tools offer.
Laser cutting and engraving machines don’t come cheap, though, and this means that you have to invest your time to research the best models for your needs before you commit your hard-earned dollars. To save you time (and, of course, money), we have stepped in and conducted that research for you, providing ten best laser cutting and engraving machines to suit your needs.
Let’s have a look:
Top 10 Laser Cutting and Engraving Machines of 2020 Reviewed
1. SUNWIN 40X50CM 12V USB Desktop Laser Engraving Machine
- Features simple assembly
- Great customer service
- Great quality for the price
- Not very consistent
- Does not support pictures/photographs
- Could use better assembly guide
Best Desktop Laser Engraving Machine
SUNWIN 40X50CM comes with a compatible software that can run on Windows 7,8,10, XP,2000. The device is made for non-commercial projects which can be taken from the home. It makes the best learning 3D printing partner for you and your loved ones back at home. This device supports multiple numbers of materials including wood, bamboo, leather, plastic and so much more. The software used to control the machine is made by the company and is very user-friendly.
SUNWIN features a very sturdy build, thanks to the high-quality aluminum build coupled with stainless steel and acrylic screws which hold the different parts together. The machine features 50 by 40 cm printable area and consumes about 12V. The device also comes with a cooling fan. The laser power amounts to 500mW. This engraver features two Y-axis 42 stepper motors and also a two-axis USB standard control panel
SUNWIN package features one 500mW laser cutting machine, protective glasses and also user instructions manual. The device also comes with a dedicated platform for user support where you can upload your detailed problem, whether it is set-up or use and you can get unlimited assistance from the support system.
2. Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO Router Kit
- Versatile with a range of support materials
- Easy to set up
- Runs on Arduino
- The software is quite heavy
- Not easy to assemble on the first time
- Could be more user-friendly
Best Wood Carving Engraving Machine
Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO comes as an upgrade to the 3018 previous builds. This more enhances update features a more user-friendly feature in which all the components that make up the device need not be positioned. This makes the assembly process for this model like a snap of the finger. Moreover, the working accuracy of the device multiples by a margin. For more enhanced stability, the base height of the device is raised to 4cm.
Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO features a custom software and also an integrated mainboard which greatly enhances the communication between the two making it seamless. The software used by the device is a high-performance Grbl software which is also open source. This makes controlling movement easy. It also runs on Arduino. Grbl is both dependable and also very simplistic making it an industry standard. The resources are, therefore, always available as well as a support system.
Genmitsu CNC 3018-PRO is a versatile laser cutting machine that can be used on a range of applications as well as materials including plastics, PVCs, Acrylics, Sot Aluminum Woods and even PCBs. Like any other effective laser cutting machine, the assembly process of this device is a walk in the park. The device comes with the manufacturer’s user manual as well as the user support platform. For quality assurance, this device comes with a one-year warranty policy.
3. Snapmaker Original 3-in-1 3D Printer
- versatile with three functionalities
- Great user support system
- Features a color touch screen
- Does not support metal engraving
- Very pricey
- Could use a better body design
Best 3 D Laser Cutting Engraving Machine
The Snapmaker is one super laser cutting machine which comes with three distinct functions including 3D printing, CNC carving and also Laser Engraving. Now, this is one super machine which even promises you more goodies when you upgrade it by purchasing additional modules like the 1600mw laser cutting module. It promises potential coupled with its cost-effective production, makes this Snapmaker the best laser cutting and Engraving machine for you.
The Snapmaker features a high-quality metal build for both durabilities as well as for high-quality prints. It is the best choice for all your prototypes as well as inhouse productions. It is recommended for STEAM education and is not only environmentally friendly but also good for home use for parent-child study. If you love 3D printing, you just found your new partner.
The Snapmaker comes with regular updates aimed at improving its performance as well as rolling out a few new features. This improves its overall performance. This kit is very user-friendly. If you are a first-timer with this kit, worry less. The software is very easy to use, and within minutes, you’ll be all set up with complex fun 3D models. To crown it all, this Snapmaker boasts a very powerful and friendly community, which is always up and ready to assist whenever the need arises. The email contacts dedicated to support are always up and running while the contact numbers are also very efficient when you need quick responses.
4. BIBO 3D Printer Dual Extruder Laser Engraving Machine
- Full-color touchscreen and Wi-Fi control
- Filament detection capabilities
- Prints same object twice at a go
- Acrylic top covers prone to cracking
- Reports of a dysfunctional fan
- Poor built quality
Best Dual Extruder Laser Engraving Machine
Do you run a crafts business from home? If so, you need a laser cutting and engraving machine to help you customize your products. The BIBI 3D Printer Dual Laser Engraving Machine works on softer objects like paper, leather, plastic, and wood. You can use it to make print patters or even engraved letters either as a way of decorating the items or as a branding strategy. This is basically both an engraver and a cutter. Apart from engraving patterns on varied types of materials, you can use it to cut thin materials like plastic.
The display is in terms of a full-color touchscreen, which is both intuitive and easier to operate. Mostly, you will like the way it looks even before you get to try it out. Additionally, the machine has a Wi-Fi control function so that you can control it via a PC or phone. Using this feature, it is possible to change the settings and even command the machine to print.
This is a smart machine that automatically pauses when it runs out of the filament spool. Of course, it will resume as soon as the filament spool is reloaded. Another interesting feature of this machine is that it is possible to print two objects of the same type at the same time. In a simple and subtle way, you get to minimize the printing costs.
5. Glowforge Plus 3D Laser Printer
- Has 3D printing capabilities
- Beautiful design
- Works with a variety of devices
- Works only when there is an internet connection
- Supplied without necessary accessories
- A little too pricey
Best 3D Laser Printer
Some laser engraving machines can feel out of place in the office or at home. They look more like industrial installations than anything else. But, there are a few, which have been created to look like normal desktop printers. The Glowforge Plus 3D Laser Printer is an elegantly designed machine that fits in with the rest of the office machinery whether at home or workplace. Apart from being a dedicated engraver, it also has the ability to print.
Unlike other 3D printers, it does not rely on plastic mold design. Rather, through the laser design, it is able to cut complete 3D objects. In the process, it engraves objects and builds them from scratch, as well. You can use it together with most computers and print 3D objects whether a photo or PDF file. It works on Windows, Mac OS, as well as Android devices. Since it will require installation on a computer, it comes with completely free software. Incidentally, you can also access and control it through the Glowforge App.
Since the active parts of the machine are hidden away, it is safe for use at home, school, or in the office. It can be used to engrave cardboard, metal, glass, acrylic, fabric, paper, leather, and wood. The manufacturer says that it can engrave even chocolate bars!
6. Orion Motor Tech 50W CNC CO2 Laser Engraving Cutting Machine
- Can engrave a wide variety of materials
- USB connectivity for control via a PC
- A built-in air compressor removes toxic gases
- Too heavy for home or office use
- Controller shuts down after two hours of continuous use
- Doesn’t come with a manual
Best Multi-Purpose Laser Engraving Mchine
Are you looking for a sturdy engraving machine with the ability to work with several kinds of materials? Why don’t you try the Orion Motor Tech 50W CNC CO2 Laser Engraving Cutting Machine? In addition to materials such as wood, cardboard, leather, and plastic, this machine is also able to engrave ceramics, mylar, marble, and crystal. So, if you want a machine to print beautiful patterns and words on your coffee mugs, this is it.
It has one of the largest work areas of 12 by 20 inches. What that means is that you can engrave even the largest objects. It comes with a proprietary install software, which you can install on any Windows computer, but not a Mac. Besides, it has the ability to work with a wide array of design software including AutoCAD and Corel Draw. It is possible to connect to it via a USB drive. That way, you can easily control its functions through a PC.
The machine comes with an onboard air compressor to quickly ward off any toxins and combustible gases, which may endanger your life and those of others around you. Weighing 300 pounds, this machine is suitable for industrial use.
7. Compact Laser Engraver, Mini Handheld Laser Etch Printer Cutter
- Bluetooth connectivity
- Has several safety measures
- The laser head is strong and long-lasting
- Not quite the industrial engraver
- Works with a small variety of materials
- Doesn’t have a built-in air compressor
Best Mini Handheld Laser Machine
Do you need a machine for engraving logos and other graphics on a variety of materials? The Compact Laser Engraver is a versatile machine that can be used with plastic, rubber, leather, paper, bamboo, wood, and so on. It is the greatest companion for any graphics designer worth the title. It supports multiple file-formats including BMP, JPG, DIB, CUR, ICO, PNG, SVG, and G-code. It supports all forms of photos as well as file formats.
Unlike other engraving machines that require Wi-Fi to connect to a PC, this product will make do with Wi-Fi. In other words, it does not require an internet connection to link up with a PC. With a simple Bluetooth functionality, you can control the settings as well as the functions of the machine. With that, you can pick any of the four engraving modes including painting, drawing, text, and images.
According to the manufacturers, this laser engraving machine has the highest laser quality. The laser head is not only durable but it is also stable and can work for long hours without breaking down. Besides, the machine comes with several safety features including an over-heat shutdown, motion-triggered stop, and password lock. When an accident happens, these features kick in to keep you safe.
8. SUNCOO 40W CO2 Laser Engraving Machine
- Ready for desktop use
- Comes with pre-installed graphics software
- Both an engraving and cutting machine
- The laser tube does not last for long
- Lacks a built-in air compressor
- Works only with advanced versions of CorelDraw
Best Desktop Laser Engraving Machine
For those looking for a desktop engraver, the SUNCOO 40W CO2 Laser Engraving Machine is the way to go. It has the ability of engraving rubber, glass, leather, plywood, and so on. It has desktop capabilities which make it a great option for personalized engraving on soft materials. It is compatible with some of the common design programs such as CorelDraw. In fact, one of the software that comes with this machine is CorelDraw. So, you don’t have to buy graphics software to use this machine.
The working area for this machine is 8 by 12 inches and has an engraving speed of up to up to 350mm per second. Since this is also a cutting machine, it runs at a maximum speed of 35 mm per second. The laser tube can last for 1,000 to 1,300 hours which means it will last for some time. If you use it heavily, then it is necessary to have another tube on standby.
Since the machine does not have a built-in air compressor, it is important that you engrave rubber, plastics, and other fume producing materials in well-ventilated places. That way, you will be able to avoid inhaling toxic fumes. The deal when buying this machine is sweeter than you can imagine. The machine comes with a USB key, USB cable, smoke fan, accessory bag, smoke pipe, and water pump.
9. KKmoon 20W Desktop Laser Engraver Portable Engraving Carving Machine
- An effective woodcutter
- Engraves even metals
- A powerful fan that cools down the laser
- Has no built-in air compressor
- Not for work on an industrial scale
- A costly machine
Best Portable Laser Engraving Machine
Some laser engraving machines are not great for cutting. With the KKmoon 20W Desktop Laser Engraver, you can cut soft materials such as wood up to a maximum of 8-millimeter thickness. So it is better than most of the machines discussed in this review. The supported engraving materials include bamboo, wood, leather, gray paper, rubber, alumina oxide, blackening plastics, and copper. This list is longer than that for other machines which can only engrave soft materials.
The good thing with this laser engraving and cutting machine is that it is compatible with design software including CAD, Inkscape, PS, and so on. Using these programs, you can create and edit the graphics you wish to engrave. Printing is also possible right from a PC using any of these programs. It has several multi-functional keys which enable the machine to work when offline. The machine supports PNG, JPG, as well as BMP file formats.
It is a powerful machine that is cooled down by a fan that runs for a maximum of 15,000rmp. This helps keep the heat up to a maximum of 60°C. This protects the laser and prolongs its life.
10. Laser Engraver Laser Engraving Machine
- A fast-working machine
- Great for novice craftsmen
- Suitable for desktop use
- Not suitable for industrial-scale printing
- Engraves only a small variety of materials
- Has a smaller printing area
Best Laser Engraving Machine for Novice Users
Sometimes, all you need is a fast working machine with the ability to produce results quickly. The Laser Engraver Laser Engraving Machine by Innoza is a true workhorse. It is great for small-scale craftsmen looking to create great pieces of artwork on wallets, plastics, bamboo, wood, acrylic, as well as kraft paper. Even though it cannot work on metal or glass, it is suitable for anything else that can be carved. So, the next time you want to customize your mobile phone case, this is the machine you should use.
What makes this machine so great for logo marking? First, it is designed for use by amateur artists looking to horn their skills and become professionals in the future. It relies on the greyscale printing technique which is an industry-standard. Other great features of this machine include freedom positioning as well as low-light positioning.
This laser engraving machine supports various file formats including PNG, CUR, ICO, DIB, BMP, GIF, and JPG. You can use it with different versions of Windows including XP, Vista, and anything newer. Just like other printers, it is great for desktop use.
How to Choose the Best Laser Cutting and Engraving Machine – The Ultimate Buying Guide
Laser cutting dates way back in the early 60s where the cutting processes used laser beams for commercialized and industrialized cutting. With time, this process has continued to grow and advance. With many businesses, including startups adopting this technology, the laser cutting process has seen its way into our homes. Whether you are looking for a laser cutter/engraving machine for your business startup or home and personal use, it doesn’t become any easier. With so many choices and brands to choose from and cheap products flooding the market, it almost becomes impossible landing a genuine investment.
Let’s have a look at some of the things to keep in mind while investing in a capital laser cutting and engraving tool.
Laser Cutter Types
Perhaps before you go about making purchases and huge investments in laser cutting machines and engravers, it is imperative to understand the different types of laser cutting machines and how they work. There are three types of laser cutters, including the following:
CO2 laser printers are some of the most popular laser cutters in the market. They make the best deals for consumers, especially starters due to their high efficiency, low energy consumption, and also their accommodative price range. The laser beam used in cutting is comprised of gas mixture with the primary gas being C02. These types of laser cutters accommodate the largest spectrum of materials, making them a favorite to many.
This kind of laser cutting machine is made from neodymium-doped crystals. The laser comes with a more intense laser with a higher wavelength as well compared to its counterpart, CO2 laser cutter. The intensity of this laser beam allows the cutter to cut through more tough materials which have thicker and stronger bonds. These materials include specific metals and ceramics as well. The downside to this machine is in expedited wearing out hence the need for more frequent maintenance checks which again call for more expenditure.
This type of laser cutter is made from ‘seed laser’ which is in turn amplifier through some special glass fibers. All through this type of laser cutter comes with a similar degree of intensity to that of Neodymium, what sets this laser cutter apart is in its low maintenance thanks to its quality build. These types of cutters are mainly used for processes involving laser marking. This involves the labeling of workpieces with the required information.
Laser Cutting Techniques
Perhaps another thing to keep into consideration before you make any investments in laser cutting machines is the laser cutting techniques. Again, these come in three categories, including vector cutting, raster engraving, and vector engraving. All these techniques play a key role in determining the kind of laser cutter machine you should invest in for your needs.
The vector beam is fired persistently in vector cutting techniques which makes it perforating through the material. This type of technique is ideal for vector graphics as well as very minute lies. The repeated action of firing the beam is what makes it very efficient.
As opposed to the vector cutting technique, which cuts through the material, this process cuts the layer or top surface of the material only. This is whereby, using a different color, the image is engraved into the material. This is achieved by setting the laser cutting device to a lower power level. The machine unfolds very fine and detailed dots producing the desired design without having to perforate through the material.
Well, this machine works with different dots per inch (DPI) to produce different raster effects for the image. Usually, this setting can be applied to the machine. This kind of technique is intended for materials such as wood and leather. The raster effects don’t work well with other materials.
Vector engraving is where vector cutting and raster engraving meet halfway. This technique is also referred to as kiss cuts. The technique follows closely the vector lines meticulously cutting out the top part of the material.
Laser Cut Materials
When thinking about purchasing a laser cutting machine, it is probably wise to also consider the variety of materials that you are likely going to be working with. There are endless varieties of materials to consider, including the following!
- Forex board
When purchasing a laser cutter, you need to ask yourself, is there a support system put in place by the brand? With the influx of different brands and qualities of laser cutter machines, you can’t always expect quality from every brand. Even when you have landed on the best quality laser cutter, due to the complexity of its design and functionality, these devices tend to break down pretty fast and therefore the need for constant repair. It is inherent that the company you purchase the device from offers a great support system both for you and the machine. This is in conjunction with the warranty policy.
- For example, here are some things to ask yourself,
- How fast can you get replacement parts?
- Is there tech support in place?
- How fast can you get your raised concerns attended to?
- How is the website configured? Is it user-friendly?
- Are there video guides on how to set up, pull down, and even replace parts?
Size and Power of The Machine
There are two key issues to pay great attention to when picking the right device for use. How powerful is the laser and also how big is the bed?
The size of the material you can work on at a go will all be dependent on the size of the device bed. The bigger the bed size than the larger the material to be cut/engraved at a go. This also means that, if you have small portions to work on, with a bigger bed size, you and work on multiple-piece concurrently. Some machines also come with beds that can be adjusted to allow different sizes of objects inside. For instance, as opposed to engraved on a flat piece of leather, some machines will adjust the size of the bed to allow in a wallet, a shoe, and so forth. It is important to pay key attention to the size of the bed the machine features in relevance to your needs.
Laser power is measured in watts. The more the watt rating for a laser, the more strength and power it harbors. The rule of thumb, in this case, is, the breadth of the material being cut is entirely dependent on the focal point of the lens opposed to the laser power. A good point to start is, settle for a larger machine even if it has a weaker laser. It will be easier to upgrade your laser than having to buy a bigger machine. A bigger machine will mean bigger pieces to work on and also multiple small pieces to work on at a go.
Equipment Quality and Also Use Stability
When it comes to equipment quality, you should never settle for less, lest you end up paying heavily for something that is not worth your money. When looking for the best laser cutting machine, be used to inspect the build. What materials is the body made from? What makes the different components of the device? Look at the laser generator, the servo motor, water tank, guide rail, and so forth.
You need to probe on the manufacturing of these small components which greatly affect the efficiency of the machine. Are the parts imported? Are they made from china? Which brands offer the best quality of these small components of the device. If you already own a laser cutting machine and are looking to upgrade yours, then knowing which brands offer the highest quality will make the difference. If you are going to purchase a durable, high efficiency and accuracy laser cutting machine, paying attention to the mere build of the exterior body will not do it!
Most of the laser cutting machines come accompanied by software which can be run on your desktop computer or laptop. This software aids in operating the machine, altering the settings to suit your needs and also design the elements to be engraved or cut out. For this reason, you need to choose a machine that comes with user-friendly software. Some of these software are very complex and take a bit of time learning and understanding your way around them. Again, you need to choose a software that will be compatible with your PC. If you are running, Microsoft Windows, Linux, or MAC OS, you need to find out whether the software accompanying the machine is compatible with the version of the operating system you are running on your PC.
Aside from that, some of these devices also feature a control panel mostly made of OLED, LCD, and so forth. This control panel is used to feed in different settings and also give information on the status of ongoing processes as well as the state of the device. This forms the main mode of communication between the user and the device. Look for a user-friendly device.
Things To Avoid or Pay Attention To
- You should avoid purchasing laser cutting machines that come with a poor support system.
- Steer clear of machines that do not feature users’ guide for setting up the device and also tutorials for replacing parts. They will both come in handy during set up and also replacing broken parts
- Pay extra attention to the power of the laser and also the size of the bed. These two are the most important factors to consider when purchasing the device
Alternatives For The Product Type
If you don’t have the means of purchasing a laser cut machine and an engraver, you can always approach companies that offer these services at a premium. These companies normally have very large machines that can accommodate bulky work that smaller devices may not be able to handle. The companies also have experts who can guide you through the process.
For some selected materials like wood, glass, and cardboard, manual engraving is also an option. However, the level of accuracy is wanting, and the amount of work to be done is a little exhausting.
With this information, you can now assess your needs and buy a machine that will meet your needs. Some of the laser cutting machines are manufactured with all these functions inbuilt such that one machine can perform a variety of applications. This perhaps would be the better option. Some come with a control panel while others are controlled entirely from your personal computer. Be sure to keep in mind the most crucial factors, including the size of the bed and also the power of the lens and motor. With that, you definitely will land a great deal.