Software and machine setup options, need some pros and cons

I just got a second laser and don’t know what would be best.

My current situation is:
4w Diode w/GRBL, located in 2nd floor office
80w CO2 Ruida 6445 w/wifi (no camera yet), located in garage
CNC Router with dedicated PC for control (not design work)

The PC I run Lightburn on is in office connected via USB to GRBL diode machine. I use this PC to do all of my design work, including design work for my CNC router. I still need to upgrade lightburn for the CO2.

I think I read that Lightburn can send the files from office PC to CO2 laser via wifi?
What will I be missing if I dont have Lightburn on a PC connected directly to CO2 via USB?

Wifi isn’t fully reliable (a wired connection is better) but as long as your network isn’t in a high-traffic environment you’ll probably be fine. There is no functional difference between having LightBurn connected to the machine via Ethernet over USB, except that files transmit about 2x faster over Ethernet.

By not having a PC located next to the laser you will lose the interactive controls, like click-to-move, the ability to use a camera with the laser, and rapid iteration when dialing in cut settings. (I assume you know this, but please never leave the laser unattended while running jobs).

You could easily use the CNC control PC in the garage for sending jobs to the laser too, assuming it’s Win7 or newer. A standard LightBurn license allows for two simultaneous installs / users (one for design, one for the laser) and we’ll add a 3rd by request for free.

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Lets say I have 2 devices setup in Lightburn, the Diode and the CO2. Is the Lightburn Lib for cut settings linked to the device selected or is it one Lib for all?

I dont have my machine with Lightburn installed in front of me or I would test it myself. thanks

You should make a library/ section per machine. Settings like the % power and speeds will not transfer well between a diode and CO2, which is me nicely saying I don’t want you to experience a fire.

Yeah that wouldnt go well, lol.

I guess what I mean was… If a lib is created/loaded for the Diode and I switch to my CO2 device will it load a different lib or will I have to switch libs manually?

You would have to switch manually. I do want to change this at some point, but most users have a single laser, so yours is an uncommon case. If you name the library according to the type of machine it’s for, the library name is shown in the UI, so it will remind you.

You can also have multiple entries in a given material - Like ‘Balsa - 5w’ and ‘Balsa - 50w’, so you knew which to use. The way you choose to use it is up to you.

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