Plus slower than Basic

I just got my new Glowforge Plus, and I am honestly disappointed that it is slower than the Basic I already have. A 1 hour 40 minute project on the Basic prints in an hour and 46 minutes on the Plus. The laser visually moves slower too, when both are running side-by-side. I am not sending it back and it is what it is, but I am disappointed that it doesn’t live up to the advertising and is in fact, slower than the Basic. For the price increase, I couldn’t help but hope to see the up to 20% improvement in speed as advertised. Otherwise, I am thankful it is working. Overall, once I overcame the steep learning curve, I am very happy with the Glowforge machine and it seems like an excellent and affordable entry-level laser. It is opening a lot of doors for our home business and for that, I am very grateful.

Placement of design objects on the bed will greatly affect the time. Also, the 20% faster mostly relates to projects that use full power. The plus has a higher output and can therefore travel faster to achieve the same effect. So the time difference will only be noticed on projects that use full power. Not excusing the hype, just explaining.


Actually, I appreciate that explanation. I place the board in the same place for both so that should not be an issue. But I rarely use full power because that seems to really scorch the wood. I wish the speed were at least the same. I am disappointed that it is actually slower. But, oh, well…At least it is going and having two should still make a huge difference in production.

Thank you.

Is the design in the same orientation on both? With engraves you can see enormous differences if you use the same design but on one it’s rotated 90 degrees.

It is the same pattern already uploaded on the app without alteration. The dimensions of the pattern forces it to be only one way in order to fit within the window.

The engrave with the Plus does appear crisper than the one on the Basic. There does seem to be a significant difference there.

Are you absolutely sure that all parameters are the same for your engraves? Are the LPI values the same?

With a higher LPI, you will get a crisper engrave, but the engrave will take longer. The head will be travelling back and forth over itself more times per inch.

(And it’s possible that the settings for the Basic and the Plus are different. They are between the Basic and the Pro, and the Plus should use similar settings as the Pro.)

I do custom settings and it is identical. I have been doing these patterns now for weeks and have standardized the settings that have given me the best, most consistent results with the material I am using.

In that case, @rpegg’s explanation is likely the correct one…you won’t be able to take advantage of the additional power of the Plus unless you choose to use the Full Power setting. For everything less than FP, the power utilization is the same, or nearly so. (The scales are equivalent between 0 and 100% for all the machines. That lets us share settings no matter what unit we have.) :slightly_smiling_face:

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Okay, I can see it is faster in cutting. I actually need to change the settings to reduce the number of repeats compared to the Basic. This is even at 100 verses full power (which would scorch the material too badly).

I don’t know what settings you are using, or whether you are cutting or engraving your objects (it sounds like you are trying to make engraving go faster, since that is the only one that has an LPI impact), but if you want to speed up an engrave, leave the speed high and lower the LPI if you want to have less charring.

The amount of burn is a combination of how long the beam is in contact with the wood (speed) the number of times that it crosses over the path that has already been burned (LPI) and the power of the beam (Power). The faster the speed setting, the less burn there is. (Also the quicker the job goes.) The lower the LPI, the faster it goes, and the less exposure of the beam there is, because the beam is not burning over areas that have already been burned. (There is less overlap. The single pass complete coverage setting is between 195 and 225 LPI given the size of this beam.) And obviously, reducing the power reduces charring.

But I use a Pro, and I don’t get excess charring at Full Power/1000 speed with an LPI at 270 or less - I get a nice caramelization. (On Proofgrade material of course, your material might be slightly different.) Increasing the LPI increases the depth of the engrave, and introduces a darker color from char.

But yeah, you might want to adjust whatever settings you are using slightly for the different machine, you can probably speed that up quite a bit. :slightly_smiling_face:

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Okay, I have had a chance to run it through its paces. If you judge it based on the same settings as the basic, it falls short. But its cutting speed is far faster, and when it comes to cutting camel playing pieces (which has been my nightmare for my game production), it has proven itself worthy of the extra price. Its engraving is also superior.

So, my first observation was wrong. It is enough of a step up to be worth the extra cost. I have to balance it out with the Basic, choosing what to use with which files, since I will be using both. But the Plus has now proven itself.

I was having a bear of a time cutting out plywood camel pieces and the plus is doing it in only a tiny fraction of the time as the basic. This is where it is saving me the most time.

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