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Thread: X-laser be aware- very abussive 20% re-stocking fee

  1. #31
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    adam any one who is purchasing a class 3b/4 should have enough knowledge to understand that or learn it before purchase hell even just to obtain variance

  2. #32
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    Not certain if I should jump into the fray or not but, I see both sides of the coin. I agree with both sides of the coin and yet have issues with both sides of the coin. Yes, X-Laser does do a lot of R&D work to ensure their projectors are as bright as possible using less power than one might otherwise think. And yes, as Dan mentioned, I will absolutely attest to seeing this in person in a very large venue side by side with much more powerful projectors. I honestly forget about that at times when I've thought about buying one. I start to get that price vs. wattage syndrome kicking in and start to shy away... even though I've SEEN it and KNOW better. I'll admit it.
    .
    I get that their products are also marketed to the less laser knowledgeable client such as DJ's and, I'd "really" rather them have less powerful projectors anyway. No offense to any DJ's but many I encounter are dumb as rocks. It's like strapping a 2 watt 445 pointer to a Jack Russell terrier's collar. They'll often just have beams going wherever they go.
    .
    But "apparent brightness" as a marketing description is seriously flawed. 2.5 watts of.... what? 2.5 watts from a whitelight ion, versus 2.5 watts from RGBLasersystems versus 2.5 watts from Guandong Prettylights are vastly different things. How does this non-laser educated DJ know what 2.5 watts really looks like in the first place. Or what it's "supposed" to look like. And, for that matter... even for the educated laserist, what IS 2.5 watts supposed to look like?
    .
    There is probably some type of parallel that can be made between this and compact fluorescent bulbs in Home Depot where 23 watts has the "apparent brightness" of a 100 watt tungsten bulb. Maybe but... it's a different type of light.
    .
    Dan posed the question of a better way to measure it. Is there any way to incorporate other forms of measurement already used for light such as lux, lumen or footcandles? Probably not but, worth asking. I don't have that scientific a mind. Maybe a universal scale needs to be created to determine "laser brightness". Although, even that could be flawed based on where you measure it from. Up close, as an example, a Lightspace Venus II with about 2.7 watts combined power next to their Ascent X 12 watt, is not necessarily all that different. I was a bit disappointed to discover that. But... back up about 75-100 feet and look again. The Ascent is now noticeably "brighter".
    .
    J/CW also is hard for me to wrap my head around. X-Laser is the only company I have ever seen that refers to laser power in that fashion. And maybe an argument can be made that it's more "correct". I don't know but, if it was really that much better of a measurement, wouldn't more manufacturers list it?
    PM Sent...

  3. #33
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    I'd hazard a guess they don't make specific comparisons because it could be commercial suicide.

    eg. As bright as Y-Brand could result in being sued by Y-Brand if they can prove it in some way inaccurate or subjective (unprovable).

    As bright as X-Lasers own more expensive laser model Z, could result in sales of Z model being lost because people decided to buy the cheaper DJ model laser because it's claimed to be just as bright and costs 1/2 the price.

    I personally don't like the description nor do I think it should be used, but equally, nor do I think as some appear to have suggested that X-Laser are deliberately dishonest. As I said above, they've contributed here for some while and have always appeared an upstanding company in the past, at least in my eyes.

    Perhaps the safest way of describing for them would be to say eg 1.8W RGB Laser with 640nm red which is approximately X times as bright as the 6XX diodes used in some other brands projectors, making our laser watt for watt appear brighter than those competitors.

    That way, it's clear:

    1. What the actual wattage is (especially if the small print said if it's measured before or after optics)

    2. How certain wavelengths of light may make certain colours brighter than other (un-named) competitors using less luminous wavelengths

    3. You're not committing suicide on the face of it, as you're not comparing it with any specific brand nor your own more expensive products

    4. By using the word approximately, provided you're not way out, you are leaving some wriggle room in the comparative description

    Just my 2 cents although whether or not it's appropriate is down to X-Laser and their lawyers advice...

  4. #34
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    I appreciate the constructive feedback. In that spirt, let me offer a few thoughts.

    1) While in an ideal world the buyer would be deeply familiar with laser technology, as others have said they just are not. If we were selling to laserists it would be a different story completely. Then we can really drill into issues beyond wavelength like modulation, beam specs, effects of scanner dynamics on perceived brightness and more.
    Wavelength was just an example, but yes we are competing against 655's still. Seriously. Also we do use 470 and yes, that has an impact for sure.

    2) In general yes, marketing statements comparing model X with Brand A is undesirable, especially when it involves subjective issues like brightness. Also given my position in ILDA and various other roles I try not to speak ill of other products, even when it is totally fair. That said, as Brad pointed out some of these aesthetics are situation dependent and that makes it all the more challenging to help people infer an effect.

    3) We debated, and still debate, the virtue of putting raw power numbers next to the apparent brightness numbers kind of like Brad's light bulb example. We ran it by a dozen industry folks who advised against it primarily because they felt it would cause confusion just as it did when LED began to emerge. "What do you mean 30W of LED can replace a 250W par can!? That just nonsense!" The fact of the matter is that because of the FDA rules arranging shootouts is challenging with many customers, and cameras simply don't pick up the nuances of laser well at all. A 1W laser can look exactly the same as a 10W laser on camera if shot from one angle or another or using different settings.

    Now Im sure someone will argue the other side of that coin, and feel free. But it is absolutely not as simple as just giving raw power numbers and hoping people will understand exactly what they mean.

    That said, you point is very well taken John about the single color vs the RGB. However, I would argue that that problem would exist in any case. Both a 1.2W raw power RGB and a 1.8W apparent brightness rated RGB laser are going to beat a 1.8W blue and be beaten by a 1.8W green. In either case people have to understand issues of apples and oranges and that is tough to communicate.

    Again, if this were JUST an issue of wavelength, there would be no issue. We have done precisely what you suggest and when we started using 638's we did the whole x times brighter than 655 thing. We could easily say that if that were the only issue - but it's not. There are a lot of other factors that go into how bright a laser looks. A simple example is our Auroras. From a power/wavelegnth standpoint they are identical to the previous generation, but they are several times brighter at the same power. In fact, on some patterns they handily beat 1W systems. Why?

    Our new HPX (which is rated in watts not apparent brightness) was just in a shootout run by a client against a projector that was double the "power" and cost, and the difference between the two was "...almost indistinguishable." The client said that they were amazed that they looked almost identical and in fact the HPX looked better on some patterns because the white balance was better.

    How would we communicate to other clients that they can get essentially the same effect for half the cost if we are not going to be seen as bashing the other product in the process? Or separately, how would we communicate to them that they can get a similar effect at a much safer level of power?

    Apparent brightness is not ideal. You will get no argument from me on that. But when we put our model against several other models and our model is as bright or brighter, why should we not be able to say that it has an apparent brightness of X watts yielded by the competing model comparison?

    I totally dig the slippery slope argument and that's why i would like something better.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bradfo69 View Post
    J/CW also is hard for me to wrap my head around. X-Laser is the only company I have ever seen that refers to laser power in that fashion. And maybe an argument can be made that it's more "correct". I don't know but, if it was really that much better of a measurement, wouldn't more manufacturers list it?
    A watt is just joule per second. Joule being the unit of energy. If you have something sending out 1 W then you know that after one second you end up with one joule. But if you just state that something is sending out one "joule" but don't specify the time scale then that says nothing. Does it actually take an hour to send out that joule of energy? Then it would send out, on average, 1/3600 joules per second, or 0.00027777777 watt. It did send out a joule of energy, but it took a whole hour for it to do so, making it only 0.27 mW. Why would we assume it would only need one second to do so when it's not specified? In fact most people would assume it is NOT joules per second because if it was then why wasn't it just in watts?

    Continuous wave lasers should always specify their output power in watt, and you should get suspicious if they don't. Is some kind of cheap trick going on? ("We told you it would only send out 15 joules of energy! It's right in the specs!") Or did you buy a pulsed laser, which rather states the energy it can have in one of its pulses in joule...

  6. #36
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    Where it breaks down is when a company named Y-Lasers comes out with a true 1.8W projector that has basically the same diodes and everything else, but with a true measurable 1.8W at the aperture. Assuming that the 1.8W Apparent Brightness isn't really 1.8W total power, I would have to assume that it wouldn't or couldn't be as bright as the Y-Laser projector unless there is some way to trick physics. So, what do you tell the DJ who compares the two and notices they aren't the same? Is that when you break out the explanation that the X-Laser spec was based on projectors that use 650nm diodes and how your eye is more sensitive to the lower wavelengths, etc. What do you tell the DJ when he then asks, "Well, why did you choose that way instead of basing it on the diodes that Laser-Y uses in their projector?" It would be a good question.

    I get the reason for "Apparent Brightness" and all of the other points. But, in the end, its a made up standard of measurement that is based on some standard that no one is really sure about. Even though we have gone through this thread, does anyone yet know what the standard of "Apparent Brightness" is? Does anyone have a 1.8W projector that they know would look the same as the one in question? I don't think so.

    The whole thing just comes across to me like that whole VW diesel emissions thing. I know it isn't the same but it just feels that way... and perception is everything. It isn't what your intentions are as much as what people think your intentions are. It seems like X-Laser keeps having to explain themselves in order to get the perception straight. But, wouldn't it easier to just write up the facts in a nice tidy paragraph and add that to the advertisement?

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnYayas View Post

    But, wouldn't it easier to just write up the facts in a nice tidy paragraph and add that to the advertisement?
    I kinda wondered a little about something like that too. I know verbage costs money and there is the question of whether people read it anyway but, some sort of blurb like "X-Laser works hard to maximize the performance of each individual component of the laser system thereby giving the apparent brightness of a 2.5 watt RGB projector while affording the safety of much lower powers." Or something to that effect....
    PM Sent...

  8. #38
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    speaking from experience, most of the time , when customers ask for a lasershow, they ask for a certain wattage, I hardly ever get asked to quote for "bright enough".
    I guess that's why x-lasers clientel are mainly DJ's and club end users?, where the main concern is low pricing.

    that's probably the reason Ive never see professional laserists, using x-laser products, I see them mainly at clubs or weekend DJ's.

    whatever works for them I guess, im sure they sell a ton of them anyways...
    RGB laser projectors
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