Generic Upgrade with PLH3D-6W-XF+
The leading 6 W laser from PLH3D series. Professional engraving laser head designed for industrial applications. Robust design, compatibility with all types of control signals used in CNC in 3D printing market as well as with a wide range of PSUs, strongest available in its size fan providing best cooling and smoke removal. It comes with lens adjusting tool.
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Manufacturer: Opt Lasers
New Version of PLH3D-6W-Series Laser Head. What is new?
Improved mechanical design
New generation of PLH3D-6W-Series has an even more compact design which looks even better than the previous one. The laser head is no longer a pigtailed, a cable can be simply and quickly connected or disconnected via 6-pin terminal.
The laser head is still compatible with all PLH3D-Series accessories and adapters.
Improved safety features
The laser head is now equipped with an “Armed” indication LED. Whenever the laser head is connected to the power supply the indication LED will turn on. Additionally to the laser safety features the LED will indicate if the laser head is overheated.
- If the ambient temperature of the environment where the laser head operates in CW mode exceeds 40⁰C (104⁰F) the indication LED will start blinking. Such a warning means that the temperature is about to cross maximum operating temperature.
- In case of the ambient temperature of 45⁰C (113⁰F) and above the indication LED will no longer work and the laser head will shut down.
New version of PLH3D-6W-Series is equipped with the new generation laser diode drivers. Compared to the previous version this laser diode driver has higher efficiency, less noise and higher quality components which ensures reliability and long lifetime of the laser.
Additional switch for 10V analog input
The laser head is now equipped with an additional switch for 10V analog input. Modulation Input 1 of the laser head can be changed from 0 – 5V analog input to 0 – 10V analog input. This change makes the laser head even more versatile and compatible with more CNC machines and 3D printers. Please refer to the user manual to find out how to change voltage range on Modulation Input 1.
Features & Benefits of the PLH3D-6W-XF engraving laser head
Cutting and engraving - PLH3D-6W-XF blue laser head allows to cut and engrave on various materials such as wood, cardboard, rubber, paper, textiles, leather, plastic, balsa, plywood, and many others as well as a mark on stainless steel, titanium and low heat conductance type of steel. For more check Manuals and Articles section.
Factory set lens - the engraving laser head is shipped the High-Resolution Triplet lens installed and adjusted to focus at 60.0 mm (measured from the front-face surface of the laser head to engraving plane). This focal distance has a well-optimized focal spot size which is suitable for many engraving and cutting applications. This is the best-optimized focus distance to start with!
Symmetric Beam Offset - In some applications, such as laser engraving of wood, it is recommended to defocus the laser by a small amount in order to achieve a symmetrical beam. This can be done by translating the laser forward or backward in the beam propagation direction by the amount shown in the table below. Doing so will allow the laser to engrave with the same line thickness in both the X and Y directions. However, for certain applications, such as engraving metals and cutting, maximizing the power density is more desirable than having a symmetrical beam. In these cases, defocus is not always necessary or recommended for the best performance.
Recommended defocus for specific engraving applications:
Laser Head Model Symmetric Beam Offset Value
PLH3D-6W-XF ±4.4 mm (±0.173")
PLH3D-6W-Hobby ±4.4 mm (±0.173")
PLH3D-6W-μSpot ±1.8 mm (±0.070")
For example, The PLH3D-6W-XF engraving laser has a factory-preset focus at 60.0 mm from the front of the laser head. Setting the laser to 64.4 mm or 55.6 mm (+/- 4.4 mm from the focus) will allow the laser head to engrave with the same line thickness in both directions
Input signals versatility - the build-in driver allows accepting a variety of signals 0 - 5 V analog signal and 0 - 5 V, 0 - 10 V or 0 - 24 V for PWM/TTL signal.
The built-in driver inside the laser head - Opt Lasers is the first company who integrated the laser diode driver directly into the laser head. A short connection between the laser diode and a driver ensures better protection for a diode, possibility of high-frequency current modulation as well as eliminates inductance effects during the switch-on.
Accepts a wide range of power supplies - 12 - 24 V, the integrated high-efficiency DC-DC converter is adjusting the input voltage to proper diode compliance voltage. This reduces the amount of heat generated and ensures over-voltage protection.
No additional cooling required - the dedicated shape of the laser heads provides the best possible cooling method for a 6 W laser diode. Many prototypes have been made to find the best solution for cooling the laser diode. The current design allows the laser head to warm up only by 2 - 3 degrees Celsius after a whole hour of constant work at full power.
Two types of lenses included - The High-Resolution Triplet Lens with lens adjuster has a relatively long effective focal length (EFL) of 8 mm, which allows it to focus laser light to a small spot. All 6 lens surfaces are coated with anti-reflection (AR) coating centered at 450 nm. It is usually preferred for engraving a thinner line, cutting a thicker material due to the reduced convergence and divergence, or when a long distance between the laser head and the plane of the object to be engraved is necessary.
High-Efficiency Mounted Aspheric Lens is designed to obtain as much as possible power from the laser diode. Its short effective focal length (EFL) of 4 mm makes a variety of working distances possible but makes the focus spot almost twice bigger compared to Triplet Lens. This lens should be used for engraving thicker lines on wood or plastic. This type of lens is used without the lens adjuster since they need to be mounted closer to the laser diode.
Strongest fan available on a market in its size - cooling is not the only thing that a fan is doing - 43 m3 of air per hour (25 CFM) makes a great smoke removal system. Additionally, the fan has 70000 hours of life expectancy.
Compatible with accessories for ease of use - ease of work as well as safety is very important to us. Many accessories we produce are high quality, made on CNC machine parts which make the work easy and safe. Please check out the accessories we prepared for the PLH3D series.
OEM customization is available for manufacturers of 3D printers and CNC machines.
Control Inputs and Electrical Connection
The PLH3D-6W-XF blue laser head has two separate controls.
Modulation Input #1 accepts 0 - 5 V or 0-10 V (with additional 4,2 k ohm resistor in series) for analog power modulation
Modulation Input #2 accepts 0 - 5 V, 0 - 10 V or 0 - 24 V for TTL/PWM and turns on the laser when the voltage exceeds 2.5 V.
Important: Do not connect both Modulation Input 1 and Modulation Input 2 at the same time. Doing so may result in malfunction of the laser head.
10 V Analog Signal input connection (X-Carve, CS-Lab, and other machines)
In order to connect 0-10 V analog signal to the Modulation Input #1 it is needed to add a 4.2 k ohm resistor in series:
Important: PLH3D-6W-XF engraving laser head should be powered from a high-quality power supply without anything else connected. Please note: connecting the laser head to the same power supply unit as a stepper motor or any other high-impedance equipment is not recommended. Doing so may cause damage to the laser diode.
Laser Driver Parameters
High power and high-frequency current laser diode driver
- Maximum output current capacity: 5 A
- Typical output current: 3-3.5 A
- Input voltage 12-24 V
- Input current max 2 A
- Integrated microcontroller for temp. measurement and soft start
- Thermal protection system: 45 °C 1
- Soft start for diode protection
- Electrostatic discharge (ESD) protection
- Reverse voltage protection
- Overcurrent protection
- Compact size and 90% efficiency
- CW Mode and Input Control Mode
- PWM/TTL and analog inputs
- Modulation bandwidth 0-30 kHz
1. Thermal protection system that cut off the laser when ambient temperature higher than 45°C.
Opt Lasers is the laser diode drivers manufacturer. Due to our experience building over a few years, we created a very high-efficiency driver with low power consumption and low heat production. Additionally, it is the fastest dedicated laser head driver available on a market accepting signals up to 30 kHz. Using 6 W laser with high speed is no longer a problem while engraving small details or making small radius turns because the laser controller is able to read all needed signals.
CNC controllers are able to send modulation signals with great speed so 50 kHz is not a problem to them. This is why a high-speed driver is a must in such a device. The driver is able to read 30 000 instructions every second what creates great precision and resolution in terms of power control. Also, maximum driver current is 6 A so using it with 3 - 4 A value ensures offset and long life of a driver.
The PLH3D-6W-XF laser head incorporates a thermal protection system that protects the laser diode from overheating to maintain its lifetime. The unit is designed to automatically shut off when the housing temperature exceeds 47 C. The analog input is protected by a 5 V Zener diode in a case on occasion there appears the voltage higher than 5 V. Despite everything, this input should not be used with higher voltages due to a risk of damage. The laser diode is protected via a Schottky diode, which protects it from a reverse voltage and ESD. In addition, the integrated driver is fully covered to protect it from metal chips in a CNC machine environment.
More info about PLH3D-6W-XF laser head
The focus distance can be quickly set or changed via the included lens adjuster (no additional tools). The driver of the unit is integrated directly on the laser head. This greatly increases the maximum modulation frequency and allows longer cables to be used.
Besides the standard functionality, the small beam spot allows the possibility of using this product for rapid PCB prototyping. This is done by illuminating the copper layer of plates after a photosensitive paste is applied.
Improved Heat Sinking
This lightweight 220 g (7.8 oz) laser head requires no additional cooling. The body acts as a heatsink, and the fan design allows it to function as an air nozzle protecting the lens from smoke, while also cooling the laser head. Performing tests on several prototype designs allowed us to optimize the heatsink’s shape and enable efficient cooling while maintaining the module’s notably small form factor.
Accessory for Smoke (see accessories)
Our 6 W laser head allows engraving or cutting of materials such as wood, stainless steel, paper, leather, cardboard, and many others. For materials that generate smoke when engraved or cut, we offer an optional nozzle that is attachable to the front of the unit via magnets built into the laser head (see accessories).
For bulk orders, the PLH3D series can be customized to all customers' needs. We can add customers' logos and all possible additional features. Customization is offered for a 3D printer and CNC manufacturers and distributors.
Our PLH3D series work with many CNC and 3D printing machines including the models:
- Azteeg X3
- CNC Shark
- GeckoDrive 540
- MakerBot Replicator1 and Clones
- MakerBot Thing-O-Matic
- MakerGear M2
- Openbuilds – C Beam/OX
- PrintRBot Upgrade
- Replicator 2 and 2X
- RepRap – Melzi Board
- RepRap – RAMPS1.4
- RepRap – RUMBA
- Shapeoko 2
- Shapeoko 3
- Ultimaker 1 & 2
- Velleman K8200
- X Controller
- X-Carve Upgrade
- Zen Toolworks
Note that this list is being continuously updated. Please contact us if you have any questions or feedback regarding compatibility.
- Remember that it is not a toy.
- Laser radiation is dangerous even when scattered or reflected from any surface.
- Always use proper protection laser filter on your CNC machine dedicated to 430 - 480 nm in order to avoid reflected radiation.
- Never point laser head at people or animals.
- Do not touch the beam, it may cause burns or other injuries.
- Do not stare at the beam or the beam spot while the material is being cut.
- Laser radiation - Avoid eye or skin exposure to direct or scattered radiation.
- Class 4 laser product.