Thunder Laser vs. Glowforge: A Comprehensive Comparison of Laser Cutting and Engraving Machines


Choosing the right laser cutting and engraving machine is crucial for achieving high-quality results and meeting the specific demands of your projects. Among the popular choices in the market are Thunder Laser and Glowforge machines. In this blog post, we'll compare these two options, delving into their features, capabilities, and pros and cons to help you make an informed decision.

Thunder Laser Overview

Thunder Laser is a Chinese company that specializes in producing high-quality CO2 laser cutting and engraving machines. Their products are known for their durability, precision, and power, making them a popular choice for professional users and small businesses alike.

Key Features of Thunder Laser Machines:

  1. High-power laser tubes: Thunder Laser machines come with high-power CO2 laser tubes, usually ranging from 60W to 130W, enabling them to work with various materials and thicknesses.
  2. Large working area: The machines offer generous working areas, with some models providing a cutting area of up to 1300 x 900 mm, making them ideal for large-scale projects.
  3. Advanced software compatibility: Thunder Laser machines are compatible with advanced software like RDWorks, LightBurn, and CorelDraw, giving users greater flexibility in designing and controlling the engraving process.
  4. Water cooling system: These machines are equipped with a water cooling system, which prolongs the laser tube's life and ensures optimal performance.

Glowforge Overview

Glowforge is a US-based company that produces user-friendly, compact, and versatile laser cutting and engraving machines. Their products are designed for hobbyists, makers, and small businesses, emphasizing ease of use and convenience. Get upto $500 off a new Glowforge with my referral link.

Key Features of Glowforge Machines:

  1. Camera-assisted alignment: Glowforge machines come with an onboard camera, which simplifies material alignment and allows for precise placement of designs.
  2. User-friendly software: The Glowforge uses cloud-based software that's easy to navigate and doesn't require extensive technical knowledge.
  3. Compact design: The Glowforge machines are designed to be compact, making them suitable for smaller workshops and home studios.
  4. Air cooling system: Glowforge machines use an air cooling system, which eliminates the need for an external water chiller.

Comparing Thunder Laser and Glowforge Machines

  1. Power: Thunder Laser machines generally have more powerful laser tubes, enabling them to cut through thicker materials and work faster. Glowforge machines are better suited for lighter-duty applications and materials.
  2. Working area: Thunder Laser machines typically offer a larger working area, making them ideal for larger projects. Glowforge machines are more compact, catering to smaller projects and limited workspaces.
  3. Cooling system: Thunder Laser machines use a water cooling system, which is more efficient in maintaining the laser tube's temperature, whereas Glowforge machines use an air cooling system, which is more convenient but potentially less effective for heavy-duty applications.
  4. Software: While Thunder Laser machines are compatible with advanced software like RDWorks and LightBurn, Glowforge uses its proprietary cloud-based software, which is more user-friendly but may have fewer advanced features.
  5. Price: Thunder Laser machines are often more expensive due to their power, capabilities, and larger working area. Glowforge machines are more affordable, making them an attractive option for hobbyists and small businesses.


When choosing between Thunder Laser and Glowforge machines, it's essential to consider your specific needs and priorities. Thunder Laser machines offer more power, larger working areas, and advanced software compatibility, making them a suitable choice for professional users and those with more extensive projects. On the other hand, Glowforge machines cater to hobbyists, makers, and small businesses, offering user-friendly software, compact designs, and more affordable price points