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Thread: OLA - Original Laser Art - SVG to ILDA conversion proggy

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006

    Default OLA - Original Laser Art - SVG to ILDA conversion proggy

    Convert Inkscape SVG vector graphics files to ILDA with OLA

    Inkscape is a great free drawing tool with vector graphics editing capabilities similar to Corel Draw. Now you can use it to easily create your own and original laser frames! If you need birds, just draw birds or use Inkscape's bitmap tracer to trace some. If you need that special frame but you're tired of point by point manipulation, use Inkscape as a TRUE vector art drawing tool!
    Get it at

    So how does it work?
    First of all this tool works for everyone! Indeed only QM2000 and Easylase users can view the art through projection as they tweak the conversion settings but you don't have to. Once written to an ILDA file every laserist should be able to us it.

    * svg path optimazation
    * intelligent point placement
    * color gradients support
    * converts multiple SVG layers into multiple ILDA frames for animations
    * easy reload button to quickly reload a SVG file after changes
    * instant laser output
    * SVG animation playback
    * comes with original new laser graphics in SVG format

    Download here: as part of the ZoofPack

    Here is a quick getting started guide, if not clear ask here.

    After unzipping it somewhere on your HD:

    Step 1)
    QM2000 users go to the bottom right panel with the sliders and load the settingsQM2000.ous file. This sets the laser graphics engine up to be as transparent as possible so the QM2000 setting take effect. You may need to go to the 'geo' tab to flip the x or y axis. You will also have to set the speed to the desired setting. You can save these settings to a file for later retrieval. Settings are automatically stored upon exit.

    Easylase users, you need to setup the laser graphics engine through the sliders in the bottom right panel - for an accurate live view. The settings you see are for my projector but probably won't work for you. Load the `calibrate.svg' file in the left panel. You will see a grid that should fade from white to gray. You will probably see colors on an RGB projector. The idea is to tweak the sliders for each laser under the R,G and B tabs to create perfect white balance.
    For each laser: set the 'blank' slider just below the lasing threshold. Set the 'min' slider just above the lasing threshold. Set the 'max' slider at the max. Use the RGB tab's sliders to get a good white balance at the bright end of the grid. Use the 'lin' (linearity) slider for each laser to compensate for non-linear modulation curves. You probably need to do this in a number of iterations. A very good white balance should be possible. Also set speed to the desired value. Under the 'set' tab play with the color shift value, should be around 1, 2, 3 for 15, 24,and 30 kpps.You can save these settings to a file for later retrieval. Settings are automatically stored upon exit. I suggest you overwrite the settings_xxk.ous files with settings tweaked for your projector. Each file stores settings for the xx target scanning speed.

    Other DAC users, you can ignore the bottom right panel.

    Step 2)
    Load any svg file you like. Choose your target scan speed, e.g., 24k. In the 'conversion settings' panel load the 'conversion_24k.cnv' file. Set scan speed to 24kpps or load your laser output settings file configured for 24kpps (Easylase users). This should give you some generic settings I found work well with the provided SVG files. The 'Conversions settings' panel allows tweaking of the conversion parameter. Hit the reload button after making changes.

    * Sort runs: sorts the drawing objects to optimize blanking. 200 is a good value.
    * Blank, base curve, and max spacing sets the default spacing between points. Higher values = less points.
    * The dwell parameters set the number of anchor points for open curves. Higher values = less points.
    * Curve and corner sensitivity at the cost of more points.
    * Point pulling is a special addition. It does not add points, it just pronounces curves by pulling points outwards. The converted graphic may look funny on the computer screen but improves the scanner output(!).
    * Overlap applies to closed curves: set the number of overlapping points to hide beginnings and ends.

    Laser output is activated with the '-*' button (representing an ASCII laser symbol). Look for the trade-off between number of points / flickering and graphic quality.

    Step 3) when happy with the result write to ILDA.

    So, here it is! I believe this is yet the best of my proggies. Have fun with it!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails screenshot.jpg  

    Last edited by Zoof; 01-05-2016 at 09:19. Reason: url

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Knoxville, TN, USA


    Cool - something new to try this weekend!!
    Looks like a great tool for artists AND those of us that are "less atristically inclined"

    Thanks, Zoof!!

    Metrologic HeNe 3.3mw Modulated laser, 2 Radio Shack motors, and a broken mirror.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Cleveland, Ohio


    Inkscape has several things going for it - free, easy to use, and a great raster to vector converter. Not to mention easily extensible via python scripts.
    Another good release from Zoof!

    thanks Matthijs

  4. #4
    mixedgas's Avatar
    mixedgas is offline Creaky Old Award Winning Bastard Technologist
    Infinitus Excellentia Ion Laser Dominatus
    Join Date
    May 2007
    A lab with some dripping water on the floor.


    And Zoof reschedules Christmas to May! WOW! Yet again ZOOF rules.

    Qui habet Christos, habet Vitam!
    I should have rented the space under my name for advertising.
    When I still could have...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Delaware USA


    Thanks Zoof

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007

    Thumbs up Excellent

    Thanks Zoof! Once again you released an excellent tool!
    Your engine is really cool, I like the extended map and geo-settings.
    Laser output on my QM2000.NET worked instantly and quality is very good with the QM2000-presets.
    Now I'll go looking for SVG-files. Already found some here and here.

    Btw... I'd love to see more of "World3D" in the future.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2006


    I should add:
    The converter is quite specific to what it excepts as input file. I haven't had the time to do a full SVG implementation but working with Inkscape that is not needed, as long as you stick to some drawing rules for best results:

    * Always draw withing page boundary.
    * Convert all drawing objects to paths. Select objects, then click on 'path' in menu and choose 'object to path'. Non-path objects are ignored.
    * Break apart multiple-segment curves. Select object 'path' menu -> break apart. Otherwise the anchor points are not added to line endings.
    * Alpha channel is ignored so set it to opaque and use RGB channels to define colors.

    This may make is slightly troublesome if you want to take an arbitrary SVG file and convert it. However, if you design your own frames, it is not really a problem.

    So if the converted output is not as expected, check the above points.

  8. #8
    soforene's Avatar
    soforene is offline The Troll formerly known as Herbert Von Poople-Futtocks
    Join Date
    Aug 2007


    Here are a few more svg files to muck about with, chums.
    Last edited by soforene; 09-01-2009 at 02:00.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2006


    Actually a lot of the SVG art for computer representation is probably not directly suitable for laser projection.
    Often you need to:
    * ungroup and break apart drawing objects.
    * simplify the image to improve scan rate.
    * remove fill color and set stroke color.
    * remove lines that were previously hidden by opaque shapes.
    * resize.
    * ...

    It still involves a bit of work but there are a number of pluses to storing laser art as SVG files:

    * The big plus is that working with Inkscape is a lot easier (read: less frustrating) than point manipulations found in a lot of laser frame editors.
    * Conversion can be redone when the art is needed at different sizes (smaller = less points)
    * Conversions can bed redone for different scan speeds increasing portability of art to different projectors.
    * Same art shared and each user can optimize it to their liking, usage and particular projector and target scan speed.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Guangzhou, china

    Default inkscape with originalLaserArt

    Is position for connect originalLaserArt to inkscape software.
    inkscape is open source software, Maybe can post one button in toolbar of inkscape for convert to ILDA directly.

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