What would you do if you are contacted by a company offering you a US$ 1,699.00 green laser pointer for review? Of course you would take it for a spin. Even more if you visited the product's page and read reviews such as "Did not come with any sharks".
Just a couple of days after being contacted by Wicked Lasers to try their Spyder II GX the parcel arrived here. Very speedy service I have to say.
The accompanying manual is of very good print quality, with clear pictures and instructions - plus all the specifications and warnings regards the use of your new laser product.
The Spyder II GX is a green laser pointer a bit bigger than those pen-sized red laser pointer people use for presentations - it measures 210mm x 26mm and weights a hefty 250g. Its shape and finish remember me of a torch. The body is made of 6061-T6 aircraft-grade aluminum and it's quite nice to hold thanks to the engravings in the body, striking a good balance of length, diameter, and weight.
You need one Lithium Ion battery type 18650 that will last about 60 minutes of constant use. Wicked Lasers sends out these pointers with two batteries and charger.
Inside the Spyder II GX there's a special cooling system. Apparently some other models could only be used for ten seconds before having to be turned off to cool a bit. This doesn't happen with the Spyder II GX, and once you press the power button it will stay on until you turn it off, or the battery runs out of juice.
Also with this pointer you will receive a pair of Green LaserShades, a much needed accessory that will protect your eyes from the green laser - you need this protection because the Spyder II GX produces a 200 - 300 mW green laser with a 532nm wavelength, which can affect your eyes.
Wicked Lasers describe its products as Military Type III black anodized to protect against scratches, airtight and water resistant, although it seems it's not recommend to leave it submerged for long periods (I didn't actually test this).
The company also says the beam is visible for hundreds of miles, although I couldn't accurately measure this because of the impossiblity of having someone hundreds of miles from here looking for the green dot. But at night I was able to see the green dot a few kms away in the hills.
Yes, this is the actual laser beam, visible at night
At night the laser is bright enough to iluminate around the target
I did find a problem though: the unit I received has some problem with the spring in the battery compartment, causing the battery to not actually touch both contacts. To make it work I had to use a piece of tin foil folded in a small square to allow contact between the battery and the switch. Interesting because you receive a test results sheet showing the unit was tested, including output power it generates and other bits of information. I've sent this picture to Wicked Lasers:
I was planning to send this laser pointer to a University to test its actual output, but seeing the unit wasn't 100% fit I thought it would be better not.
What can you use this for? You can burn dark paper, ignite matches, explode ballons, use as a telescope guide, attach to an assault rifle, plug to friggin' sharks or whatever else you can imagine a laser this powerful can do.
- Possibly the most powerful green laser pointer around
- Nice unit, fits nicely on hand
- Constant action requires no cooling