View Full Version : Trotec Speedy 360 vs Universal VLS6.60

James Pena
05-04-2016, 12:06 PM
I have done some research and saw all the various machines at the ISA show in Orlando recently. I have quotes for two units and wanted to get user input. Both seem to be well respected companies and fairly comparable machines. I noted the differences between the two, many seem somewhat minor.

Trotec Speedy 360 - 26,500
80 watts
working area 20" x 32"
Black aluminum grid table

Universal VLS6.60 - 19,100
60 watts (20 watts less)
working area 18" x 32" (2" less than trotec)
honeycomb cutting table

It seems like the Universal being 7,400 less is a much better value. Is there some other important feature difference between these that should be noted?

Gary Hair
05-04-2016, 12:57 PM
The speed and size difference may not be worth the $7,400 price difference, but there is definitely some value there. I can't speak to the support from Universal since I have never owned one or dealt with them, but I can tell you that the Trotec support is fantastic and is worth spending a bit more to have it. Check with Trotec to be sure for the 360, but my Speedy 400 had the option for several tables. Last, you should be able to negotiate a better price - if you had cash in hand and were buying at the show, I can almost guarantee that you would have paid less than either company quoted you - how much less depends on how hungry they are!

Mike Null
05-04-2016, 3:14 PM
A closer comparison would be the Speedy 300 60 watt machine which would be close to the same price.

The 360 with 80 watts is worth a lot more than the ULS. You also get 11" of vertical Z axis movement with the 360.

Ross Moshinsky
05-04-2016, 3:41 PM
I have a 2011 VLS 6.60. I'll clue you in on a few things.

1. To bump to 80W is not inexpensive. Trotec swap between the 60w and 80w tubes as if there is no real price difference. To bump to 80W on a ULS machine is expensive. You need to go to the PLS system and between going to the PLS and paying for the extra tube, the price jumps to damn near 30k..
2. The ULS system DOES NOT include air assist. I was tricked by this when I shopped for new machines a few years ago. I assumed the ULS had air assist. It does not. Will cost another ~$2500 to get air assist.
3. The ULS has a high cost of ownership. Needs belts and bearings regularly. That's $600 every couple of years. Not the cheapest machine to run. The one benefit the ULS had was cheap tube refills but now it's up to the "industry standard" $2500+
4. The overall quality of the ULS just isn't that great. I find the beam quality and engraving to be noticeably lower than my LS100 engraver.

So if you ask me which one to buy new, I'd go with the Trotec Speedy. I've been quoted more than once the Speed 300 at around $23-25k before tax/delivery/negotiation. So I think you've been quoted a fair price.

Rich Kruyer
05-05-2016, 9:33 AM

I just purchase a Trotec 360 80 watt last November. I upgraded from a GCC mercury 40 watt. The Trotec laser is super fast and support has been great when contacting them.

Let me know if you have any other questions.


Kev Williams
05-05-2016, 11:20 AM
I don't see the 'what will you be engraving?' question asked, so if I may:

If you're needs are high-speed raster engraving, such as lots of lamacoid signs or tags, Trotec for sure.

For cutting, one XX watt metal or glass laser will cut pretty much the same speed as any other XX watt glass or metal laser.

And just my personal experience, but my twice-as-big-as-the-Trotec-above-at-1/5-the-cost 80w Triumph cuts just as precisely as an of my 3 Synrad machines. Watt for watt, a metal laser may cut a bit faster than a glass laser, but not sure the price differential would be worth it.

If your needs are split, the ULS may be a good buy, but the 20w difference is pretty substantial.

...some shops have 1 or 2 machines, an employee or 2, and enough work to keep the machines and employees mostly busy... Me, I have help 6 hours a day (half of which is spent tool engraving), everything else is up to me- as such, my needs aren't so much a FAST machine, what I need is MANY machines. Keeping 3 'slower' machines running is much more productive for me than 1 or even 2 fast machines...

Your 'best buy" all depends on your needs and working environment...

Paul Phillips
05-05-2016, 11:46 AM
Universal have three levels of quality on their systems. The VLS is their "Versa laser" entry level laser, it moves up from there to the PLS "Professional Series" which is what I have, and then the ILS "Industrial Series" which would probably be the most comparable to the Trotec, so I would agree with Ross, they are not comparable machines, the Trotec is well worth the extra money. The old adage, "you get what you pay for" seems to really ring true when it comes to lasers!