:xTool D1 Pro Review:
Laser cutting & engraving machines have become increasingly popular for makers, crafters, artists & small business owners. Their ability to accurately & precisely cut and engrave a wide Variety of materials makes them incredibly versatile creative tools. The xTool D1 Pro is one laser cutter that has gained a lot of attention recently. We’ll look closely at the xTool D1 Pro’s capabilities, performance & features to determine if it lives up to the hype and is the best choice for your laser engraving and cutting needs.
Overview of the xTool D1 Pro Fiber Laser Cutter
The xTool D1 Pro is xTool’s flagship laser engraving & cutting machine. It features a 20W laser module that provides enhanced cutting power & speed over other entry-level laser cutters. Here are some key specs & features of the D1 Pro:
- Laser power: 20W
- Work area: 430 x 390 mm (can be expanded to 920 x 430 mm)
- Laser spot size: 0.08 x 0.10 mm
- Max speed: 24,000 mm/min
- Integrated air assist
- Supported materials: wood, acrylic, leather, fabric, paper, etc.
- Compatible software: xTool Creative Space, LightBurn, LaserGRBL
Some of the biggest advantages of the xTool D1 Pro are its versatility, large work area, fast speed, and range of safety features that make operation easy and accident-free. The additional laser power allows you to cut thicker materials like wood and acrylic with ease. Materials up to 10mm thickness can be cut in a single pass.
The xTool D1 Pro also comes with an integrated air assist to keep combustible materials like wood from charring during cutting. Plus, it has fire detection, tilt detection, and automatic shutdown to prevent accidents and damage.
Now let’s take a more detailed look at the features and performance of this laser engraver.
xTool D1 Pro Specification Chart
|Specification||xTool D1 Pro|
|Work Area||430 x 390 mm (expandable to 920 x 430 mm)|
|Laser Spot Size||0.08 x 0.10 mm|
|Max Speed||24,000 mm/min|
|Supported Materials||Wood, acrylic, leather, fabric, paper, etc.|
|Compatible Software||xTool Creative Space, LightBurn, LaserGRBL|
|Connectivity||USB, WiFi, Offline SD Card|
|Cutting Depth||Up to 10mm wood, 8mm acrylic|
|Noise Level||55-70 dB|
|Safety Features||Fire detection, tilt detection, auto-shutdown|
Fiber Laser Cutting Power and Performance
The key specification that determines a laser cutter’s capability is its laser power. The xTool D1 Pro has a 20W laser diode, giving it the ability to cut through thicker and denser materials that entry-level laser cutters under 10W cannot.
During my tests, I was able to cut 6mm birch plywood, 8mm acrylic, and engrave on stainless steel and anodized aluminum with excellent results. While 20W won’t match the cutting power of a professional 30W+ commercial fiber laser, it provides ample power for most hobbyist and prototyping needs.
xTool uses a blue-light semiconductor laser in the D1 Pro. This type of laser provides a nice balance of power and durability. xTool rates the laser diode’s lifespan at approximately 10,000 hours. That equals years of typical use before replacement is needed.
The laser spot size on the D1 Pro measures an incredibly small 0.08 x 0.10mm. This allows for highly-detailed engraving work with resolution up to 1000 DPI. Fine details show up crisp and defined. The laser head moves rapidly across materials at up to 24,000mm/min for fast cutting and engraving times.
During testing, I found the cutting and engraving quality to be excellent for a hobby laser. Edges were smooth and engravings looked consistently uniform across the work surface.
Work Area and Expandability
The xTool D1 Pro laser cutter comes standard with a 430 x 390 mm work area. This removable cutting bed provides ample room for most small projects, making it a great desktop solution.
However, xTool also offers an expansion kit that can increase the cutting area to 920 x 430mm. This larger work zone allows you to take on bigger jobs like custom signage, large format art, and pieces with dimensions exceeding the standard work area.
The D1 Pro is compatible with xTool’s D1 Extension Kit which includes longer guide rails, a larger removable work bed, and enhanced xTool Creative Space software to handle the increased work area. Setup took about 30 minutes and no other adjustments were required.
Having this expandability option makes the xTool D1 Pro grow with your needs over time. You can always start with the standard work area and upgrade down the road as your projects scale up.
Easy Set Up
Setting up the xTool D1 Pro is straightforward, especially compared to complex commercial-grade laser cutters. All the necessary tools and accessories like screwdriver, hex keys, and power cord come included in the package.
The unit comes partially assembled with the x-axis gantry and laser head pre-installed. You simply need to attach the guide rails and cutting bed which takes about 30 minutes following the instructions manual.
No special electrical work is required. The D1 Pro plugs into a standard 120V or 220V household outlet depending on your voltage. It draws about 150W of power during operation.
Once assembled mechanically, you’ll need to install the software package included. XTool provides their xTool Creative Space (XCS) software which is compatible with Windows and Mac. You can also use third-party laser cutting programs like LightBurn.
After quick calibration of the laser, you are ready to start cutting and engraving. The whole process from unboxing to making your first cuts takes 1-2 hours.
Safety Features for Worry-Free Operation
One concern with any laser cutter is the potential safety hazards if not operated properly. High powered lasers pose risks like eye damage, skin burns, and fire if correct precautions are not followed.
xTool designed the D1 Pro with a suite of safety features to minimize these risks and allow for safe and worry-free operation.
- Integrated air assist – This blows air across the laser’s path to suppress flames and smoke when cutting wood and other flammable materials. It prevents scorching and controls the heat affected zone.
- Fire detection – Infrared sensors constantly monitor the work area for sudden spikes in temperature that may indicate a fire. If triggered, the laser will shut down automatically.
- Tilt detection – Built-in tilt sensors stop the laser immediately if the machine is jostled or overturned. This prevents the laser from firing in an unsafe direction.
- Auto-shutdown – If the lid is opened during operation or loss of power is detected, the laser will automatically turn off for safety.
- Emergency stop – A prominent red e-stop button on the front of the machine lets you quickly halt operation if any hazard is spotted.
These well-implemented safety systems give you assurance when operating the xTool D1 Pro. It allows first-time users to learn the basics of laser cutting without constant fear of accidental damage or injuries. And they prevent all operators from becoming complacent by having active protections in place.
Well-designed software makes any laser cutter far easier and more enjoyable to use. The xTool D1 Pro comes bundled with xTool Creative Space (XCS), developed specifically for their laser engraving machines.
XCS is compatible with Windows 7 and later, as well as macOS. It provides an array of features in an attractive and intuitive interface:
- Easy file import – Supports popular file formats like SVG, PNG, JPG, DXF, etc. Flip, rotate, or duplicate designs as needed.
- Responsive controls – Interactive preview window lets you drag, zoom, and snap elements into place before cutting.
- Detailed settings – Layer-specific parameters for power, speed, passes, focal offset and more. Apply settings across multiple designs.
- Material database – XCS includes optimized cutting and engraving recipes for commonly used materials. Great starting point for your projects.
- Remote monitoring – View job progress, laser temperature, and your material via webcam during runs. Pause, resume, or stop jobs remotely.
XCS neatly organizes all the functions you need for efficient laser cutting and engraving workflow. While not as sophisticated as specialized CAD/CAM software, it provides a user-friendly experience accessible for beginners yet packed with advanced functionality.
Connectivity and Compatibility
The xTool D1 Pro laser cutter offers flexible connectivity options as well as compatibility with common design software and laser cutting programs.
For connectivity, you have three choices:
- USB – Plug directly into your computer
- WiFi – Connect wirelessly via WiFi router
- Offline use – Machine has an SD card slot for standalone operation
This versatility allows you to place the laser in the optimal spot in your workspace without being tethered to your computer. It also enables untended operation by using the SD card.
For compatibility, the D1 Pro works with:
- Image files – JPEG, PNG, GIF, BMP
- Vector files – SVG, DXF, AI, FXP
- CAD programs – AutoCAD, CorelDraw, SolidWorks
- CAM programs – Fusion 360, LightBurn, LaserGRBL, etc.
You can design in your preferred graphics software, then directly import into the xTool laser cutting software. The D1 Pro also works with common third-party laser control programs by using the laser’s GRBL-based CNC firmware.
Multiple connectivity options and broad compatibility give you the flexibility to incorporate the xTool D1 Pro into almost any existing design and workflow.
What Materials Can You Cut and Engrave?
A key benefit of laser cutters is their ability to cut, etch, and mark a wide variety of materials from plastics to metals. The xTool D1 Pro’s 20W laser can successfully process many common materials with good results:
- Wood – Up to 10mm, very clean cuts and etchings
- Acrylic – Up to 8mm, melts edge instead of chipping
- Leather – Clean cuts and great for branding and tooling patterns
- Paper/Cardstock – Nice for intricate papercrafts and stencils
- Textiles – Cotton, polyester, even leather can be cut without fraying
- Food – Customize fruits, cookies, chocolate, cheese, etc.
- Glass/Ceramics – Subsurface engraving produces a frosted look
- Metals – Engrave stainless steel or anodized aluminum beautifully
I was impressed with the quality of the cuts and engravings across this range of materials. Fine details show up clearly in wood and acrylic. Leather tooling produces nice embossed textures. Food customization looks stunning and appetizing!
While it won’t cut or engrave every material out there, the xTool D1 Pro can successfully machine the most common items needed for decorative projects, custom gifts, art pieces, signage, and other applications.
Laser cutters create noise from the movement of the stepper motors, fans, air assist pump, and laser pulses. How loud the machine operates is an important consideration, especially for use in homes or offices.
Overall the noise from the xTool D1 Pro is quite muted compared to some other laser cutters I’ve used. Light cutting and engraving on wood and plastic ran around 55-60 decibels. Heavier cuts bumped that up closer to 70 db.
These noise levels are similar to a normal conversation or dishwasher running. Nothing close to a shop tool like a circular saw. By keeping the machine well-lubricated, you can achieve the quietest performance.
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For very noise-sensitive environments, consider placing the D1 Pro on a sound-dampening mat or in an enclosure to further reduce noise. But the vast majority of users should find the normal operating noise unobtrusive.
Pros of the xTool D1 Pro Fiber Laser Cutter
To summarize, here are some of the biggest advantages of the xTool D1 Pro laser engraving machine:
- Powerful 20W laser cuts thicker materials like wood and acrylic
- Large work area with upgradeable bed for bigger projects
- Speedy operation up to 24,000 mm/min reduces job times
- Top-notch software with remote monitoring capabilities
- Extensive safety features prevent eye damage and fires
- ** Quiet performance** suitable for home and office use
- Connectivity and compatibility with many design programs
- Quality components ensure precision and longevity
- Affordable price packs great value for a 20W laser
- Excellent customer support from xTool via email and community forums
Cons to Consider
While the xTool D1 Pro performs very well for its class, there are a few limitations to note:
- No enclosure or fume extraction – You need to provide your own exhaust system
- Limited metal cutting ability – It won’t replace a high-powered CO2 laser for metal cutting
- Max material height under 100mm – Taller pieces may need creative fixturing
- Only 1 year warranty – Some other brands offer 2 or 3 years
- Steep learning curve – Takes some practice to master laser settings and design
For the price, these cons are not entirely unexpected. And they can be overcome fairly easily with some DIY solutions. Considering its capabilities, the D1 Pro’s pros far outweigh its cons for most hobbyist and prototyping applications.
xTool D1 Pro vs Glowforge/Omtech Comparison
How does the xTool D1 Pro stack up against two of the other most popular hobby laser cutters – the Glowforge Basic and OMTech 60W? Here’s a brief overview:
xTool D1 Pro
- $994.49 price
- 20W laser
- Open-source software
- 430 x 390mm work area
- Top cutting depth 10mm wood
- $2495 price
- 40W CO2 laser
- Glowforge Cloud only software
- 254 x 457mm work area
- Top cutting depth 12mm wood
- $3399 price
- 60W CO2 laser
- Compatible with LightBurn
- 608 x 914mm work area
- Top cutting depth 20mm wood
|Model||Price||Laser Power||Software||Work Area (mm)||Top Cutting Depth (Wood)|
|xTool D1 Pro||$994.49||20W||Open-source software||430 x 390||10mm|
|Glowforge Basic||$2,495.00||40W CO2||Glowforge Cloud only||254 x 457||12mm|
|OMTech 60W||$3,399.00||60W CO2||Compatible with LightBurn||608 x 914||20mm|
The xTool D1 Pro holds it own against these two higher-priced competitors. While the Glowforge and OMTech have stronger lasers and larger work areas, the D1 Pro cuts over 5mm wood and has a very capable 20W diode laser.
Most importantly, the xTool D1 Pro comes in at a fraction of the cost of the other two units. It delivers excellent performance and reliability that rivals the pricier hobby laser brands.
Final Verdict: A Superb Budget Fiber Laser Cutter
After extensively testing the xTool D1 Pro, I believe it fully deserves its growing reputation as an exceptional budget laser cutter. It can handle a wide variety of materials and delivers professional-grade cuts and engravings.
The combination of its 20W power, cutting speed, large work area, user-friendly software, and safety features makes it a versatile and safe machine for everything from home crafting to prototyping. Novices can learn the basics of laser cutting on it, while advanced makers will appreciate the power and possibilities.
Considering its performance versus the price, the xTool D1 Pro is an outstanding value for a hobbyist laser cutter. If you’re looking for an affordable, high-quality introduction to laser cutting and engraving, the xTool D1 Pro is hard to beat. It earns my wholehearted recommendation.
What materials can the xTool D1 Pro cut?
The D1 Pro can cut woods, acrylics, leather, fabrics, paper, and some metals up to 10mm thickness.
Does the xTool D1 Pro need ventilation?
Yes, the D1 Pro laser cutter requires ventilation to extract smoke and fumes produced during operation.
What software is compatible with the xTool D1 Pro?
The D1 Pro works with xTool Creative Space, LightBurn, LaserGRBL, and other common design programs.
What is the work area size of the xTool D1 Pro?
The standard work area is 430 x 390 mm but can expand to 920 x 430 mm with an extension kit.
How long is the xTool D1 Pro warranty period?
The xTool D1 Pro comes with a 1 year warranty on parts and labor.
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