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Laser Show Systems - System Design

Melles Griot Micro-YAG Survey
by Jim Hardaway

    Many laserists want the portability, air-cooled operation and 'plug in the wall' convenience of a high power laser.  One of the most popular on the market is the Micro-YAG made by Melles Griot as if offers these features in a 2.5 and 3 watt package.  Since the apparent brightness of the 532 green line is 3X, these lasers appear many times brighter to the audience than their stated output power but are small and portable.
Despite their popularity, there have been ongoing problems with these lasers. I decided to conduct a survey of Micro-YAG owners to get some idea of how they felt about the laser.


  • This is NOT a scientific survey conducted with a 'blind' sample.

  • The survey relied on a "convenience sample" taken from responses to a request for information on an industry mailing list.  There may be owners of these lasers that are happy with them and thus did not respond.

  • The results shown may not be accurate and consistent if a random sampling of all Micro-YAG laser owners were undertaken as only 23 laser owners replied (although some may own more than one of these lasers).

  • This survey does not reflect a guarantee of performance and is merely an averaging of numbers that were returned from random companies off of an email request.

  • This survey is provided for informational purposes only and should not be considered as an endorsement or criticism of the laser.

  • If you would like a hard copy of the data submitted l (without the companies names that responded) you may email Jim Hardaway at hardawayjim@hotmail.com


Survey results

Response Number Percentage
Total Number of respondents to the survey:


Laser Failure rate:


Average cost of repairs:

$4,500.00 US$


Average repair time:

 5 months


Loss of Show Revenue Reported:

$10,000 US$


Most common failure mode:

Power Supply


Average Time to Failure

12+ Months


Survey respondents were asked to rate the Micro-YAG laser on a number of factors using the following 1 to 6 scale:

  • 1 = Unacceptable (shown in black)

  • 2 = Poor (shown in red)

  • 3 = Needs Improvement (shown in orange)

  • 4 = Average (shown in yellow)

  • 5 = Above Average (shown in light green)

  • 6 = Superb (shown in green)

Factor Rating on 1to 6 scale
Customer Service
Repair Time
Price Per Performance


DISCLAIMER: Some of the information in the Backstage area is provided by the persons or companies named on the relevant page(s). Laser F/X does NOT endorse or recommend any products/services and is NOT responsible for the technical accuracy of the information provided.  We provide this information as a service to laserists using the Backstage area. 

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