Wicked Laser Extreme II Green Laser
Wicked Laser Extreme II Green Laser
|Wicked Laser's Extreme II Green Laser Pointer|
Laser pointers. They are great tools. They are very useful in pointing out objects in the night sky. Many companies sell these lasers for the waiting masses. Many are basically the same. Green Lasers in the range of 5mw or less. There are a few companies that tweak these lasers to output more than 5mw of power, but they command a premium price. I personally have one of the 5mw green laser pointers. It does a good job, but there are several situations that limit its usefulness. Cold, low batteries, and "less than dark" skies can make my 5mw laser almost insufficient for pointing out astronomical objects.
Enter the Wicked Laser Extreme II green laser. I recently received one to review, and I couldn't wait to try it out. I was not sure what model Wicked Lasers was going to send me, but when I received the laser, it was rated at 52 mw. WOW! I was surprised and very happy with the opportunity to try one of their top models. I gathered my lasers together to get a first impression.
First was my red laser. Always cool, and a nice red dot with little reflection. Does a nice job as a red laser pointer. Next was my 5mw green laser. Nice green beam, tight and capable of a bit of reflection of the beam off of the target wall. This is what I have been used to in the realm of the green laser pointer. Next, the Wicked Laser Extreme II.
Holy smokes. Unbelievable. That is one impressive laser. It produced a large amount of reflection off of the target wall. It produced a much wider beam, and a larger target spot, but this is what I expected. I did not have any idea how bright the beam of this laser would be. It is bright. However, the real proof of this laser is in the use in the night sky.
I am aware of the possible problems in using a laser like this in the night sky. That is why I was extremely careful in where the beam was pointed, how long the beam was produced, and what was in the area to be affected by the use of this beam. All laser pointers should never be considered, or treated, as a toy. They should never be pointed at anyone, nor should children, or adults that act like children, be allowed to use any laser. This is doubly important with this laser. It is powerful. It is bright. It is a tool, and should be treated with respect.
My first opportunity to use this laser in a teaching situation was at a star session for a college science class to teach teachers the astronomical night sky and the use of various types of telescopes. The Extreme II laser stole the show. What impressed me most about this laser was how well it did on this particular night. The night was clear, but the temperature was about 18 degrees on the mountain, and during the evening, the winds picked up to the point that it was impossible to use the scopes, and the wind chill was into negative numbers Fahrenheit. Then the blowing snow started and created a surreal scene, since it was ground level snow, and the skies were still wonderfully clear. My 5mw green laser pointer gave up the ghost, and was totally ineffective. Hardly any beam was produced. Back into the bag it went, and out came the Extreme II. With a check of the skies for aircraft, I pressed the button. The Extreme II came to life, stretching a beautiful green beam into the heavens. The blowing snow interrupted the beam occasionally with bright flashes along the length of the beam. That was really unexpected and gave the beam a glittering appearance. This beam is bright, and can be seen for great distances. People do not have to be near the beam to see it piercing the night sky.
Further tests were performed to check the stability of the beam, degradation through consistent use, degradation due to battery depletion, and beam brightness.
Beam stability - Through all of the tests, the Extreme II showed negligible fluctuations in the apparent brightness of the beam. Most lasers I have used varied noticeably in beam strength. Not this one. Constant, bright beams.
Timeline Degradation - This unit builds up very little heat in use. I ran the laser for 180 seconds of constant beam. This is much longer than average use. There was no appreciable heat build-up at the tip of the Extreme II. It got a small amount warmer, but not anywhere near what I expected. This is a very comforting thought, since I would not want to put a hot tip laser in my pocket.
Power Degradation - I tested the output of the Extreme II when I first got the laser, then again after about 30 minutes of use over several days. The output is extremely close to what it was when I first received it. Total output has dropped about 10% after 30 minutes. That is WAY better than I expected. I really thought this unit would eat batteries for lunch. No so with my model. I am very pleased with this aspect.
Beam Brightness - The Extreme II is easily 10 times brighter than my 5 mw Green Laser. From viewing them side by side, I would have guessed more than tenfold in brightness, but the tests show 10 times as bright.
My final thoughts. First off, this laser is powerful. It should not be played with in any situation. Second, this laser pointer is worth every penny of the price. If you need a powerful pointer, and have enough common sense to use it properly, then this is your laser. It is sturdy, efficient, and bright..... in other words, everything you are looking for in a laser pointer.
Product is available from Wicked Lasers