Nowadays, laser cutting machines are becoming extremely popular for businesses and individuals alike. With the ownership of a laser cutter, there will come a time where replacement laser tubes will be required. In these situations, the owner of the machine will have two choices. The first choice is known as a DC laser tube and the second is an RF unit. While there’s a lot of debate as to which replacement tube is best, there are a few things to consider.
The first thing to think about is the construction. A DC laser tube is made primarily of glass. The RF option is made of metal. When it comes to performance, especially general cutting or engraving, both of these options perform rather well. As it relates to cost, the DC or glass laser tube is only a fraction of the cost of a metal tube. In these cases, the best option, from a cost standpoint, is to choose a DC laser tube replacement.
If the work that a business or individual does with a laser cutter is very detailed, both DC and RF tubes work well. For extreme detail, the RF tube typically offers better results. This is because the spot size of the output of an RF tube is slightly smaller than that of a glass tube. This makes it ideal for high detail etching or engraving.
Lastly, there is the question of longevity. This is where costs can play a major role. The RF laser tube typically lasts 4 to 5 times longer than a DC tube. Considering that the cost for the RF tube is significantly higher, it’s longevity can help mitigate some of its higher initial costs. However, for people that don’t have a great deal of money to spend upfront on a replacement laser tube, a DC tube may be a better option in the short term.
There is no shortage of information as to which are the best laser tubes to purchase when replacing a burned out tube. In some cases, there are clear-cut winners. Whether you choose an RF or a DC laser tube, the chances are quite good that you will experience a great deal of quality and service from these replacement units.