Wicked Laser Spyder III Arctic: Our First Photos

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SodaAnt

While hitting pilots with lasers is certainly bad, this is less likely with this laser for 2 reasons. First, green lasers are brighter to the human eye and thus more likely to cause flash blindness. Second, while a good green laser had a divergence of <1 mrad, from what I've heard, the artic has a divergence more like 4mrad, so it would spread out more.

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schmag

I smile whenever someone starts talking about the dangers of a pilot flying along minding his own bussiness when all of a sudden stray laser goes through the cockpit OMG I AM BLIND!!!

not really. although the beam can exist at that distance especially in a laser of this power. the factors you need to take into consideration are.

have you ever tried holding a rifle while looking through a scope steady at 500 meters? extend that out 5+ times that distance and try holding that laser steady. especially on a target moving that fast.

next thing to consider is the colmination of the lens. that beam may be focused to a pinpoint dot at 100 200 even 300 meters. the optics necessary to focus the beam that tight at the distance an airplane would be away would be beyond mos peoples price range. and likely not in this device.

there are as well studies posted online that I read sometime back illustrating even more points

I am not say hey kids go point this laser at that plane it is still illegal and I don't recommend it.

I am sure stranger things have happened but the blind pilot is not something I am worried about.

not the first laser I have built that will burn a couple feet away.

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cstute

I got "lit up" last month by a green laser at work, not fun. (Especialy since I had to file a report with the FAA.)

Just waiting for some idiot to use one of these blue lasers to paint a plane at night.

Blind Pilots = FAIL

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emtownsend

Division of Small Manufacturers, International and Consumer Assistance,
Office of Communication, Education and Radiation Programs,
Center for Devices and Radiological Health tells me that these are going to be refused entry into the US.  I wrote to them because these are horribly dagerous.  They referred me to two links regarding these lasers.

http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/cms_ia/importalert_254.html

http://www.fda.gov/Radiation-EmittingProducts/RadiationSafety/AlertsandNotices/ucm116534.htm

 

These are BAD news for consumers.  IF a consumer wants one, they need to be registered and restricted.  These are essentially weapons.   There.. So now you know how I feel!  LOL

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FasterBlaster

As a journalist, it is your job to inform your readers. The other guy that asked that you write about deliveries is saying it the way it is. That car you ordered wasn't sitting on the lot was it? I am sure they didn't tell you it was in stock and ready to ship immediately and that you'd have it in 3-7 days either. You probably bought the car knowing full well there would be a delay. The buyers of the Arctic laser didn't have the benefit of full disclosure and they paid in full. So I ask you Jon, what do you think your readers would say if you promised to post pictures tomorrow of something and then didn't do it? What if you then guaranteed you'd do so next week and didn't do that either? When would your readers stop believing what you said? I think you are confusing "feelings" with realities. A journalist has an ethical responsibility to do more than write about a single aspect of the story or disclose that too. Not mentioning the serious delays paints a false picture. You know that people reading your article will want to buy the product. Not informing them of things you know have been told about is disingenuous. Magazine writes always get things long before they are ready for market. In this case, it was "guaranteed" to be in stock and was not. That isn't worthy of note in your story?

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JonPhillips

OK, that is a well reasoned argument. So I give you credit there. What I was trying to say is that it's not been my goal to cover this laser from consumer advocacy angle, a la, "Are paying customers satisfied with their buying experience?" My goal has been to cover the laser as a piece of technology -- what it can do, and how it can be used safely... what the public must know about this unique and game-changing device. This is consumer advocacy, yes, but wholly geared toward consumer (and larger public) safety. I think one of the reasons I'm non-chalant about deliveries is that I know that with products such as this, supply is always low in the beginning, and manufactuers typically vastly overestimate production capacity -- not out of malice, but out of wishful thinking and pure excited, getting-ahead-of-oneself. That said, it doesn't excuse poor customer service, or, worse, misleading information. (And you're right, when I bought my car, Lotus was very, very on top of things as far as keeping all us waiting listees informed of delivery schedules... On the Lotus forums, we practically knew each other's list numbers! If memory serves I was '#48' at Sillicon Valley Auto Works.) If you could email me directly and share some forum threads or information on customer dissatisfaction, that would be helpful. I can begin investigating this side of the story, and try to get a response from WL. My guess is that WL is trying as hard as possible and is overwhelmed by a customer support problem it didn't anticipate. But, yes, I do want to know more about customer gripes, so give me some leads. (See, everyone, I am actually open to reason!)

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Keith E. Whisman

The All New Spyder III Artic, Bug zapper for the 21st century. Really, this thing is the coolest bug zapper ever. 

 

 

Yeah I got that from The Family Guy Star Wars episode. Blue harvest.

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gothliciouz

so what is the deal?...what's the laser for?..what does it do?...is it for just playing?

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JonPhillips

My full articles will explain what it is for, and what it odes. For now I'll say NO, it is in NOW WAY for "playing."

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Lhot

 

Yes more shots of the lab, etc.... and whatever happened to the "white board"?  I see you've learned your lesson.....I seem to remember a parking lot fire a few years back...all in the name of research of course  :)

Was that a small filecabinet or a Corsair 800D?  :D

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JonPhillips

I hope to god that whiteboard hasn't been erased. That's a classic! As for the software safe experiment that caught the attention of the Brisbane fire department in the last 90s, well... lesson learned. Both our Mac and Max teams tested the IOsafe recently and we DO have video of that:

http://www.maclife.com/article/reviews/iosafe_solo_review_fire_video

This time, in the name of safety, they did it at Ocean Beach where bonfires are legal.

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novaroach

Even non-mirror reflected light from A Class IV blue laser is carcinogenic within a certain range. They're selling these "light-sabre" look-alikes for under $300. Mmmm. I wonder how long before the morons in Bozoland start maiming themselves and each other. I think the devices are way cool but I think marketing them as Wicked Toys is a recipe for tragedy and a sunami of litigation.

and will someone PLEASE pull the plug on Mr Bestbluray and his clumsy spam routine. Maybe test the laser on HIM next, eh?

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sniggler

The cure for Darwinism?

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novaroach

when aimed directly at the genitalia.

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grimmjow07

Blue laserlight is not carcinogenic....its non ionizing radiation. You need to be getting into the ultraviolet light range for that to happen. The dangers of it are its thermal hazard and high energy visible light hazard to your eyes. So as long as you are not stupid and wear the safety glasses, you will be fine.

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novaroach

From Wickedlasers' own web site: "Direct or indirect skin exposure to blue laser light is also harmful. The MPE (Maximum Permissible Exposure) for skin for a 3mm beam of this wavelength is approximately 200mW/CM^2. This is laser can easily generate a power density (irradiance) of about 15 Watts/CM^2. Therefore, this laser's beam exceeds the skin exposure MPE by ( 15 / 0.2 ) = 75 times. At this level of irradiance, skin exposure to the intense blue laser light can possibly cause cancer. Do not allow bare skin to be exposed, including your face when wearing safety goggles, to light diffusely reflected from any surface closer than several inches. This laser is a thousand times stronger than sunlight on skin and any type of exposure should be avoided whether it be from the collimated beam or close exposure to its bright diffused reflections."

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M1K3Z0R

FIRIN MAH LAZER!

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Slimjim0617

That's a powerful looking laser. Glad you guys did this in the environment you did. Even though you guys had the goggles on was it still pretty bright or are the photos adding to it?

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JonPhillips

Right now, it is impossible for me to say if the photos are adding to the wow factor. THose were long exposures, and my guess is that the great amount of diffuse ambient blue light wouldn't have been visible were we to watch this scene with the goggles off. My guess is that, with the goggles off (which we wouldn't have done, mind you) we would have seen the visible beam, and a small amount of diffusion at the terminus. But the terminus itself, the "dot" on the black metal, also would have been a SERIOUS danger. This is the highest risk element. From a danger factor, looking directly (no goggles) at the dot is only susperseded by having the laser shining directly in your eye.

This is the connundrum of this device: With the goggles on, you can't see much of anything save a very, very reduced version of the terminating dot, and a little bit of the beam. To this extent -- with the goggles on -- it's a very underwhelming experience. Yet the goggles SHOULD be on to ensure safest possible use of the laser. This begs the question, If you're buying the laser for its cool factor, to actually see the beam, then what good is it? Well, I think the answer is that the Arctic is device for a smart, committed, non-douchebag laser enthusiast who is truly interested in science, and controlled laser experiments. And these people exist. I've read a lot of comments on laser forums, and it's clear to me that laser enthusiasts are like PC enthusiasts: There is a small group of "adults" who truly know what they're doing, and are interested in technology, and treat the world with civility. And then there's a larger group of "children" who discuss lasers like your typical dumb-ass PC/videogame fanboys. I am hoping that the fanboy contingent will have no interest in the Arctic, because it really isn't an impressive experience when used safely. For folks who want a laser that shows a visible beam, something that can be shown off to friends, the answer is a much, much less powerful green laser (which doesn't pose the same photochemical vision risks). And, obviously, every laser has its own safety considerations, and even these green lasers pose risks that should be respected.

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Slimjim0617

That's what I was thinking. I read the previous posts and you spoke of serious hazards with using this laser. I was just wondering if that laser is powerful enough to make the beam that bright. From these posts I can tell this is something you don't want to mess around with. Maybe the blue laser should be regulated to research teams, etc. Other than just showing off, what could these be used for?

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Mark17

It's a good thing you guys did test it. I can't imagine the embarrassment you would have to face if you showed up and it didn't work. You would have gotten laughed right out of the laboratory.

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JonPhillips

Yeah, indeed. LBL is going WAY out of its way to help us with this. That said, my guess is their safety officer would discourage anyone using this device outside the confines of an actual laser lab. We'll find out more tomorrow.

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LouieAtienza

I knew you couldn't resist!

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DerrickDel

Oh wait, NO ONE HAS RECEIVED THEM YET!  I can't believe you guys would post those shots or anything positive about Wicked Lasers at all.  I order early/mid June as well as thousands of others and NO ONE has received one yet.  Seriously, check out the situation first next time, geesh.

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JonPhillips

Derrick, with all due respect, our job isn't to worry about the feelings or sensibilities of people who've ordered the laser. Our job is to inform the entire public (those who've ordered and those who have not) about what the laser is, what it can do, and the risks associated with it. Right now, I don't see any unusual problems or anything "amiss" with shipping. These devices can't be (and shouldn't be) rushed off the assembly line like ball-point pens at a pen factory. Also, I believe WL has been rather upfront about the capacity of the manufacturing process, as well as potential delays. It also seems that other regular-old customers (non-journalists) are beginning to receive their Arctics, so your assertion that "no one" has received one yet seems wrong (from what I can gather from reports on other websites). Now, all that said, if the capacity/delivery situation does blow up into something alarming, we'll follow that story. But for now, I don't see anything I haven't seen before.

FWIW, I waited about 18 months for the car you see in my avatar photo. Ordered in 2003, and it finally arrived in 2005. I know what a long, long, long wait for a piece of high-tech gear feels like. You'll just drive yourself crazy if you get too worked up about it. That's my unsolicited advice; take it for what you will.

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eternally

 

   Saying "I believe WL has been rather upfront about the capacity of the manufacturing process, as well as potential delays..." is just absurd.   Their website's ordering info all says the delivery process, from ordering to receipt of the package, will take "9 days".  If they don't even have the product ready yet, how is claiming a nonexistent delivery date being upfront about delays...?

   They're sure to charge people right away when they order though, aren't they? 

   You may not intend your reviews to be aimed at consumers, but you're a consumer-driven magazine.  I love MaxPC, but you're not Scientific American, sorry.  And linking to the ordering page of a manufacturer who is taking money but not delivering goods comes with responsibilities.  At the very least, a MENTION of the issue.

 

 

 

 

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grorc

WOW  Before reading the article I thought you were hitting a mirror at the other end.  That is amazing.

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JonPhillips

We would never aim it at a mirror in such an ad-hoc, uncontrolled situation. That would be foolish.

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Cache

Truthfully, I just want one of these on a mount at work so I can keep my coffee hot.  It would add both cool factor, as well as a modest amount of fame.  And once you have teh fame, you have teh womenz.

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thetechchild

Amen to that. =) Plus, imagine the amazing practical jokes you could pull... Or cue the awesome spy work of burning holes in doors and ripping out the lock...

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Danielt876

I just want it so I can burn stuff.........I wonder if you could tan yourself with it? LOL

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williezzy

Why don't ya'll take more pictures of Maximum PC? This is the first image I have ever seen of where ya'll work. Oh, and the laser looks awesome, just don't kill yourself trying to prove that. I can't wait for Fridays review. See ya.

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ABouman

We've actually got plans to start shooting some video around the office soon, so you'll be seeing plenty of it in the future!

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gamefreakjtb

Do take pictures of your workspace, that's interesting. Also, burn shit with that thing.

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JohnP

 You just hsot my eysout! Icnat see!jSu! Su teh bastards!

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JonPhillips

LOL! (And very little makes me laugh anymore.) (And I only LOLed because you've been a voice of reason, and I know that YOU know the laser isn't a laughing matter... in the final analysis.)

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