100 Power vs Full Power

Whats the difference, if any? Is it just a UI issue that translates to the same thing? If so I would like to suggest an update to the UI that says >= 100 set to Full powweerrrr


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There is a major difference. Not sure the percentage. The 100 power is used mostly for engraving. The Full Power is kind of like saying turn the volume up to 11 and cut.


Think of full like afterburner, it is more than 100, it is max that won’t damage your tube.


And just to toss this into the arena, if people look down the road, apparently 1-100 precision power is the same between basic and pro units - full power is different because of tube wattage.


So would full be like 110, or 200, or would it change dependant on things like how cold the room is?

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Glowforge does some magic that increases the power; not sure what and they won’t say. I’m not sure the exact numbers.

Here is my test engrave from: Gift - First Inlay Project

The two engravings I have circled were at 1000 Glow Speed, the left was 100% power, the right was Full Power!

The 100% gave me a depth of 0.021", Full Power gave me a depth of 0.041".




Perhaps the best way to answer is the 0-100 are identical on the Basic and Pro. Full does kick it up a notch, giving you the full 40W on basic and 45W on Pro. Below Full, all shared settings are the same for everyone no matter the unit, so 905/30 on Basic and Pro deliver same results.

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That’s actually a really good point. But I would image in the context of the individual classes of the lasers pro and standard should still be consistent to their model?

I guess the end game here is, If I set the power to full, can I rely on that to do the same thing and if so how much more power are we talking here? Or is full power the option you use to just say, 100% didn’t work, give it everything the hardware can handle.

I think they should play a sound file of Scottie telling Kirk he’s giving it all she’s got.


Please do. If I am wrong, I want to know. Information gathered (and possibly misunderstood) from previous posts.

Yeah, I did a glance around the forums and it seemed to be mixed. Hoping for some official sauce up in this here crazy world of informations.

I remember @dan addressing the 100 and below being identical across machines, which allows settings sharing. I remember the Full being more.

Beyond that, some resides on recollection of speculation with the tube as a consumable and wearing out, full power wearing it out faster. Looking back, I certainly should have qualified my statements as a cross of opinion and best of recollection.

I just went downstairs and engraved a square at 1000 speed and both 100 and full power.

The 100 power in solid walnut engraved to 0.027" depth
The Full power in solid walnut engraved to 0.055" depth

Dan had said in the July update that Precision was 0-99 and full power was 100. 100 is clearly not maximum power. Both @joe and I got very similar results in different materials. It looks like 0-100 is Precision and the slider to full power sets full power.


There was an interim update when Precision Power was first introduced. At that time the UI had not yet been changed to have the “full power” switch. So in that interim update, 1-99 was precision, 100 was full power.

Then they changed the UI to have 1-100 be precision, and then the full power as a separate setting outside the numerical range.


Yes that’s right. The wording was a little weird. He described the interim settings and then showed the (draft) soon to be UI right below it. I had forgotten what the old UI looked like. So yes It’s 0-100 is Precision and then an extra slide switch to go to Full Power.

Thanks for the refresher.

It could be that for the variable power they use some special settings on the variable power supply for the laser. Full power switches it to same circuits used for cutting…

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Which part do you think is false? I was under the impression that higher power shortening tube life was an unavoidable property of all CO2 lasers.

It is probably true that more power will wear the tube proportionally faster but once you exceed the maximum rating its life diminishes very fast. So GF full power should be the rating of the tube 40/45W and that should give the rated tube life. Running at lower power should extend it.

Chinese lasers tend to run above the rating and the tube lasts no time at all if you do that.

The GF power ratings 1-100 are not a percentage. They are some obscured power scale that they won’t disclose.

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I thought at some point this forum concluded that the scale of life/power use is exponential so even a small reduction from “full” power results in significant life extension? (And real values would be nice-especially for the pro as the slide scale is supposed to be the same value between the two)
No laser experience so I’m truly asking this one.