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Thread: Mac compatible laser engraver

  1. #61

    Mac compatible laser engraver

    Scott/Doug,

    Gentlemen. Please read the following "correction" to my recent comment about "leaving" the forum.

    Original comment: "I will get off and stay off this forum from here on out."

    What it SHOULD have read: "i will get off and stay off mentioning a particular product in this form from here on out."

    Thank you very much for your kind words.

    No, I have no intention of leaving. The information that everyone has provided has been first rate and very professional. It has allowed me to make some rather informed decisions up to and including whether or not I really want to spend the money to get a laser or not; which I might add, that decision has not been totally made as yet. Once I meet with the company rep for the laser I'm looking at in SoCal, get that demo using my own computer with my own software, and then meet with my financial advisor etc, etc, then I will decide IF I want to go down this road. After the "hands on" demo, I'll get back to this forum and try to explain as best I can the good, the bad and the ugly about the particular computer and laser interface I'm looking at.

    This forum has been a great help in all aspects of my research. I'm at least conversant in some of the terms on software and hardware BECAUSE of this forum. There is no way that I can thank everyone enough. But, thank you all very much just the same!

    Dave
    The Wood Block, Ltd

  2. #62
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Savusavu, Fiji
    Posts
    1,167
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Garcia View Post
    "I will get off and stay off mentioning a particular product...."
    Personally, I would hope that at least SOME of the time it is okay to do just that. I want to know about any particular product that is especially good, bad, or unique. Shipping to Fiji is quite expensive. And, I pay 75% of the product duty rate on the shipping cost! Yes, I have to pay duty on the freight cost. Mistakes in ordering something that won't do what I expect could put me out of business. We do not need advertising but we do need solid factual information. (And as a long-time Mac user who started with the very first Macs - darn those screens were tiny - I am quite interested in anything Mac compatible.)
    Longtai 460 with 100 watt EFR, mostly for fun. More power is good!! And a shop with enough wood working tools to make a lot of sawdust. Ex-owner of Shenhui 460-80 and engraving business with 45 watt Epilog Mini18.

  3. #63

    Mac compatible laser engraver

    Quote Originally Posted by John Noell View Post
    Personally, I would hope that at least SOME of the time it is okay to do just that. I want to know about any particular product that is especially good, bad, or unique. Shipping to Fiji is quite expensive. And, I pay 75% of the product duty rate on the shipping cost! Yes, I have to pay duty on the freight cost. Mistakes in ordering something that won't do what I expect could put me out of business. We do not need advertising but we do need solid factual information. (And as a long-time Mac user who started with the very first Macs - darn those screens were tiny - I am quite interested in anything Mac compatible.)
    John,

    Fiji??? Now there's a great place to live and work! Bet you do a lot of work for projects for divers, right? Spent a couple of vacations on Vanuatu(?) a few years back and cycled through Suava both times. Great places!

    How did you manage to start a laser engraving business in Fiji?

    With regards to discussing named products here on this forum, you're right. This is the place to do it for sure, especially for folks like yourself so far away. I currently split my time between California and Japan, with small businesses in both locations. And lasers in Japan are EXTREMELY expensive to buy, and to get repaired. Consequently the research etc, on this forum. Also, because I am a small business, I can not afford to have one computer here and another there. Using my MacBook Pro laptop works extremely well, thus the constant search for a Mac compatible laser engraver.

    If there is any way that I can help you with international business or parts etc, please just let me know.

    Dave Garcia
    The Wood Block, Ltd

  4. #64

    MAC Driver

    FYI, the C180 is the last of the LaserPro line to have the Mac driver written for it which should be ready sometime this month. All of their other models already have the Mac driver. I'll be visiting the LaserPro folks in SoCal sometime this month to get a complete demo once that driver is available for the C180.
    Dave,

    How did the demo go? If so, I'd be curious to hear your report. The only report I've heard, so far, is from the NBM Long Beach Show where an attendee saw the "Mac driver". He said it's not really a driver but a $300 add-on that processes Illustrator files from a Mac to the laser. He said it's some kind of "hardware box"(?) that does it for you.

    As a Mac user, he said there was no way that would work for him.

    Just wondered if you found something different at your demo?
    Jeanette Brewer
    Engraving Concepts

  5. #65

    Mac compatible laser engraver

    One and all,

    To everyone who has watched this thread for the last couple of months, hopefully the following will fill in some of the blanks.

    Last Friday, I attended the NBM Show at the Long Beach, CA, Convention Center for the specific purpose of running to ground my search for a laser engraver compatible with a Mac.

    As a recap, for two years I've been searching for such a machine and thought I had found one in the LaserPro C180, specifically speaking with Kurt Koser and his son Parker of LaserProNA. Unfortunately their parent company "sort of" sold them down the drain a little leading them to believe that in fact they were going to provide a Mac driver for their LaserPro machines. Well they did...... sort of.

    What LaserPro did do was provide an "add on" driver to their driver package which allows a Mac computer to "talk to" the LaserPro but ONLY when the Mac is using Adobe Illustrator software. In other words to use your Mac with a LaserPro machine, you MUST be using Adobe Illustrator and ONLY Adobe Illustrator as your graphics software package. This add on driver costs an additional $300.

    Technically speaking, yes, the LaserPro folks did in fact provide a Mac driver....... for Adobe Illustrator ONLY. If you have, and or are using any other graphics software besides Adobe Illustrator, it will not work from your Mac.

    Both Kurt and Parker were once again extremely professional in discussing and answering all of my questions, in person this time. They also seem to sell a quality product in the LaserPro machines. Unfortunately the machine that I was interested in, the LaserPro C180, they did not have at the show and I was unable to see what it could do. They both did say that the C180 would do everything that the machine they did have on display would do.

    After spending about an hour with both Kurt and Parker, I visited the Universal, Epilog and GCC displays. I was now religated to Boot Camp, Windows XP, Corel Draw, on my Mac. So with that fact and two years of researched information on laser engravers, I was armed to the teeth with questions etc, etc, and had a very interesting time speaking with Epilog, Universal and GCC.

    One other point that really surprised me. In my discussions with all of the laser vendors at this show they DO in fact read the SMC forum. I won't mention names but they did mention a number of people by name, including myself, that post to this forum. In other words, they follow what all of us say here for business purposes? Good on them! Also good business practices don't you think?! Maybe they will see that Mac is a major player in the graphics business and act accordingly. Just thought you'd like to know.

    At most shows like this they usually have a couple of pretty good show specials. And LaserPro, Epilog, GCC and Universal did. For me it all boiled down to how I felt in dealing with the people that were representing each manufacter at the show, and how they could help my business. The added bonus to shows like this are that one usually runs into other people who have purchased from each of the various vendors who gladly provide some pretty good off the cuff information. Such is the case here as well. I even ran into a couple in a trophy and engraving business from my home town! Very small world for sure.

    Without going into all of the details, here is what I'm leaning towards. The Epilog folks seem to have the best bang for my buck, specifically the new Zing 30 watt unit with the 24" x 12" table. For those that would like the prices they quoted me, please send me a PM and I'll forward that information to you. The main thing that pushed me towards the Epilog were the comments I received from the various "other" folks on the service received before and after the sale by the local distributor, and the manner in which the individual at the Epilog show display discussed and answered ALL of my questions. He even brought over another one of their reps who in fact uses a Mac with the Zing 30 watt 24x12 unit, which they did in fact have on display. I had also taken along a couple of the wood pens that I make and asked them if they would allow me to engrave on them as a trial. To be fair, all of the vendors allowed me to do this. But the Epilog folks also did a couple of other items that I would normally do in my business, and this was really impressive.

    I'm sure that I did not answer everyones questions on the Mac compatible laser unit. If you see something you'd like additional answers to please do not hesitate to ask. I'm a strong believer that reinventing the wheel is a total waste of time.

    To all of you who have helped get me to this point, my sincere thanks for all of the assistance, information and guidance. This has been a learning as well as entirely enjoyable experience.

    Dave Garcia
    The Wood Block, Ltd

  6. #66
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    3
    Okay, I am jumping into a discussion rather late but hopefully by now, someone has developed a more compatible system for Macs. Does anyone have any better solutions than they did four years ago? Do I need VM-ware in order to run laser engravers?

  7. #67
    I run a new MAC 27" with Parallels and Windows.. It isn't hooked up to my laser, but I would bet it would work just fine if you did...
    Full Spectrum Laser 5th Gen, 45 Watt with Gold Catalyst tube
    Rotary Attachment
    Corel Draw X5
    Complete wood shop.

  8. #68
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Barrie, Ontario
    Posts
    239
    Quote Originally Posted by Patrice Nesbitt View Post
    Okay, I am jumping into a discussion rather late but hopefully by now, someone has developed a more compatible system for Macs. Does anyone have any better solutions than they did four years ago? Do I need VM-ware in order to run laser engravers?
    It's pretty much the same, you need to run Windows, either with Boot Camp or virtual client Parallels/VM-ware, I prefer boot camp.
    -
    Zing 24 - 40 watts
    Corel X3/X5/X6
    Autocad 2016

  9. Agreed

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Shepherd View Post
    Dave, I've asked for it on these forums and the response is that they don't do Mac drivers. OSX is going through the roof on sales. If you didn't see the Keynote from WWDC yesterday about their sales, you should watch it. It'll shut all the "Mac's are overpriced systems for stupid people" up. Mac sales are on fire. I've said it before, the first big boy to come out with a Mac driver is going to clean house.

    I agree, I want to run a laser from OSX, but not from a Mac loaded with Windows. That defeates the purpose of having the Mac.

    Agreed, why would anyone want to run a known virus (windows)on their Mac?

  10. #70
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
    Posts
    13,941
    This is a very old thread but there is some news. I saw a video on the Trotec Web Site recently about new software that Trotec has that works over a network with a Mac or Windows computer. If your interested contact Trotec for more information.

  11. #71
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Chicago, IL
    Posts
    36
    I too have successfully used vm-ware on a mac that enabled me to send illustrator files made on the mac OS side to Job Control (Trotecs' print driver) and happily laser away without a pc in sight. It can be done. (with additional software of course) But you won't want to design on the windows side because of performance issues among other things. Dragging and dropping between OS's or utilizing cloud storage worked for me. FWIW im now back on PC and it is a better workflow overall for my needs.
    Trotec Speedy 360 80watt, Woodworking, screenprinting, paper marbling and an all around assortment of art supplies.
    I make art, my laser makes money. which i spend on art tools like lasers.
    MAKE it 'til you make it.

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