In this xTool S1 review, we’ll take an in-depth look at the Features, Capabilities & real-world performance of this machine to help you determine if it’s the right Laser Cutter for your needs.
The xTool S1 is an enclosed diode laser cutter and engraver that offers excellent cutting power, precision & Versatility for hobbyists, small businesses, educators & professional makers. With interchangeable laser modules, rotary attachments, and other accessories, it can handle an extremely wide variety of materials and applications.
xTool S1 Review: Key Features
The xTool S1 has a robust set of features that enable precise, efficient laser cutting and engraving in a compact, safe package. Here are some of the most notable capabilities of the xTool S1:
- Interchangeable Laser Modules: The xTool S1 comes in 20W and 40W models. For the utmost flexibility, users can switch between the included infrared laser and visible laser modules to cut or engrave a wider range of materials.
- Class 1 Laser Safety: The xTool S1 is certified to Class 1 laser safety standards for enclosed laser products. This makes it much safer to use than open-frame hobby lasers.
- Rapid 600mm/s Speed: With cutting speeds up to 600mm/s, the xTool S1 makes quick work of laser cutting tasks. This supercharges workflow & Productivity.
- 19.6″ x 12.5” Work Area: The generous work area enables larger projects like custom acrylic signs or cutting full sheets of material. An automated conveyor option expands the work area to nearly 10 feet long.
- Auto Focus: The advanced auto focus system ensures optimal laser focus for every job with just one click. This saves Setup time & removes guesswork.
- Rotary Attachment: A 4-in-1 rotary attachment accessory allows drilling, cutting, and engraving on cylindrical objects like glasses, mugs, and vases.
- Enclosed Design: The fully enclosed body protects the optics, reduces noise, and contains mess during operation. Doors intelligently pause the laser if opened.
- Air Assist: The optional air assist nozzle delivers a precision air jet to evacuate smoke and debris for superior cut quality.
These Features make the xTool S1 a Versatile powerhouse designed for usability & performance. But how does it actually perform for real laser cutting and engraving work?
xTool S1 Review: Cutting and Engraving Performance
With its high-powered 40W laser, the xTool S1 can cut and engrave a wide selection of materials with impressive results:
- Wood: Cleanly cuts ply, balsa, cherry, walnut, oak, and more up to 18mm thick in a single pass. Detailed photo-quality engraving on wood.
- Acrylic: Cuts opaque and translucent acrylic sheets up to 15mm thick. Provides smooth polished edges when air assist enabled.
- Leather: Effortlessly cuts and etches delicate leather for bags, wallets, shoes, and clothing.
- Metals: Marks bare metals like stainless steel and aluminum. Requires IR Laser for deeper engraving.
- Plastics: Engraves plastic nameplates, faceplates, and product markings with ease.
- Paper/Cardstock: Cuts thick papercraft materials with precision and zero burn marks around edges.
- Fabrics: Lasers fabrics like denim, felt, and cotton for cutting patterns and adding decorative branding.
- Glass/Ceramics: Etches designs, logos, and artwork into glassware, slate, marble ceramic tiles. IR laser recommended.
The xTool S1’s 20W mode provides finer laser focus for highly detailed engraving work. Users can toggle between the high-power 40W cutting mode and the ultra-fine 20W engraving mode in seconds by changing the quick-swap laser modules.
Overall, the xTool S1 performs on par with professional CO2 laser cutters costing several times more. For most hobbyists and small businesses, the xTool S1’s cutting and engraving abilities exceed their needs.
xTool S1 Review: Software
The xTool S1 runs on xTool’s own xTool Creative Space (XCS) software, with compatibility for LightBurn CAD/CAM software.
xTool Creative Space Software
xTool Creative Space offers an intuitive, beginner-friendly interface plus powerful tools for designing and executing laser cutting and engraving jobs. Key Features Include:
- Real-time laser positioning display
- Simple file imports including SVG, PNG, JPG, DXF
- Basic design tools for shapes, text, lines
- Smart material suggestions by selected workpiece
- Customizable laser profiles to refine cutting/engraving
- Camera positioning for precise alignments
- Simulation previews to verify jobs
- Automatic focus and Z-axis height maps
- Support for rotary attachment
- Wifi and USB connectivity
The streamlined workflow makes it easy for new laser users to learn. But advanced users will appreciate the expansive device control and automation features that speed up their jobs. XCS runs on Windows, MacOS, iOS and Android for flexible access.
For maximum software versatility, the xTool S1 works with LightBurn, a popular third-party laser cutting/engraving program. LightBurn offers CAD-like design tools, deep cut/etch setting customization, simulations, plugins, and other enhanced features. xTool S1 Review
LightBurn costs extra, but unlocks the full spectrum of design options. The xTool S1 caters to both beginning makers who want simplicity, and professionals who need expansive software control.
xTool S1 Review: Accessories
xTool offers a range of accessories that upgrade the capabilities and functionality of the S1:
- Automatic Conveyor Feeder: Feeds long materials through automatically for continuous cuts up to 10 feet.
- Riser Base: Increases max object height to 4.7” for engraving large items.
- Honeycomb Panel: Provides a laser safe work surface and captures debris.
- Fume Extractor: Safely removes smoke/fumes generated during laser operation.
- Air Purifier: Additional air filtration unit keeps shop air clean.
- RA2 Pro Rotary: Allows drilling and engraving on glasses, bottles, and cylindrical objects.
- 1064nm IR Laser: Alternative module for deeper engraving on metals and plastics.
- Fire Prevention: Auto fire detection and suppression devices for 24/7 unattended operation.
The range of add-ons enable a customized xTool S1 setup tailored exactly for a user’s particular laser cutting workflow. Everything connects seamlessly to maximize the capabilities. xTool S1 Review
xTool S1 Review: Value & Price
With prices starting at ,199, the xTool S1 offers outstanding value compared to competing enclosed laser cutters:
- More affordable than pro-grade CO2 lasers over ,000+
- Matches/exceeds results of open-frame lasers costing ,500+
- Profitable for small businesses, makers, educators, and creators
- Costs 2-4x less than similar 40W enclosed lasers
The xTool S1 puts professional-level laser cutting and engraving within reach of hobbyists, schools, and small commercial shops. For those scaling up a laser business or ramping up production, the xTool S1 delivers exceptional performance per dollar. xTool S1 Review
xTool S1 Review: Pros & Cons
Here are the main pros and cons of the xTool S1 based on this hands-on review:
- Class 1 certified enclosed safety
- Interchangeable 40W & 20W laser modules
- 600mm/s high speed cutting
- Large 19.6″ x 12.5″ work area
- Easy auto-focus functionality
- Spot-on positioning precision
- Smooth ramp speed control
- XY axis rigidity and stability
- Support for rotary 4th axis
- 10-foot conveyor option
- Robust metal body construction
- Reliable laser source
- Intuitive user-friendly software
- LightBurn CAD/CAM software compatible
- Competitive pricing
- Range of accessories to expand functionality
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- No internal camera
- Limited support for tall objects without riser
- Software not as full-featured as LightBurn
- Optional conveyor adds cost
- Small parts require additional fixtures
- No standalone offline software option
But these cons are relatively minor given the abundant strengths of the xTool S1 laser cutter. For most users, the pros far outweigh any limitations. xTool S1 Review
xTool S1 Review Conclusion: A Superb Laser Cutter
The xTool S1 stands tall among desktop laser cutters with its refined flagship design and array of innovative features. This Versatile machine can handle everything from delicate engraving work to slicing through thick wood & acrylic with ease. xTool S1 Review
xTool smartly built the S1 to suit both novice makers and production-focused businesses. The overarching focus on usable safety, precision, speed & reliability makes it our top pick for an enclosed hobby/home Laser Cutter. Given the abundance of value added in the xTool S1 package, it’s easy to highly recommend this new laser cutter. xTool S1 Review
So if you’re considering upgrading your laser cutting and engraving capabilities, put the xTool S1 at the top of your list. Its unmatched blend of performance, software, accessories, safety & price make this a smart choice for bringing professional-grade Laser Cutting in-house. xTool S1 Review
What materials can the xTool S1 laser cut?
The xTool S1 can cut wood, acrylic, leather, fabric, paper, cardstock, and some metals up to 18mm thick depending on material. An IR laser module allows deeper cutting of metals.
How accurate is the positioning and repeatability?
With high-precision linear rails and robust gantry, positioning accuracy is within 0.01mm for consistent, reliable cuts.
Does the xTool S1 require special electrical requirements?
The xTool S1 plugs into a standard 110V electrical outlet without need for special wiring. Some accessories like the conveyor may need 220V.
What file types does the xTool S1 software support?
It supports SVG, DXF, PNG, JPG, BMP and other common file types for importing designs and artwork to cut and engrave.
What support does xTool provide if there are issues?
xTool offers 12 months standard warranty, lifetime support, and cost-effective extra warranty plans to provide assistance if problems occur.
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