If I were to pulse those mini DVD lasers in sequence, assuming that they were all trained on the same target, could I produce temps high enough to be a decent laser cutter? Or do lasers just not work that way.

I think that If I train 40 of those lasers and run them at 1 watt for 1/40th of a second each, I should be able to produce a significant result.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Coherence and mutual focusing of the combined beam would be difficult to achieve without some serious optics, and is necessary in order to have additive power. Pulsing them individually in sequence would be no different than running a single one continuously (except for the power dissipation). \$\endgroup\$
    – crasic
    Commented Jul 19, 2013 at 1:42
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Also, keep in mind that for most diode lasers the frequency is proportional to the current, DVD-R lasers (the actual burner laser) is around 250mw, overdriving with 1w, even if pulsed, will probably cause it to go into some unstable regime and lose all coherence (if it doesn't explode). Additionally, what you are burning needs to be absorbant at the frequency you are driving at in order to dissipate the coherent light as heat rather than just reflect it. Also keep in mind that cutting even sub mm thick alluminum requires pulsed power on the order of hundreds of watts. \$\endgroup\$
    – crasic
    Commented Jul 19, 2013 at 2:01

1 Answer 1


DVD laser diodes have been used to build laser cutters / laser engravers, as a google search will quickly show.

They aren't fast, but they work.

Blu-ray lasers work much better, though.

Just a single laser from a DVD burner or Blu-Ray writer, in all those examples.

  • \$\begingroup\$ So then it may be possible \$\endgroup\$
    – user3045
    Commented Jul 19, 2013 at 5:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ Not just possible, it's been done several times. There are videos of it, and detailed reports. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Jul 19, 2013 at 5:49

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