Let’s be really clear about something; you probably do not need a laser from Wicked Lasers. These are not scientific tools, really; they’re toys. Awesome toys that will fill you with the jealous desire to own one. But, hey, now you can justify buying one if you’re a DIY kind of person, with the EVO Open Source.
Wicked Lasers is calling this “the world’s first hackable, smartphone-controllable laser”, and that’s probably true considering, well, really only Wicked is making consumer lasers this powerful. The laser is built to accept two accessories. First, the smartport allows you to control the laser via Bluetooth. Second, the firmware cable allows you to reprogram the laser to your heart’s content, although keep in mind we’ll not talking a pointer, here; this is the closest you can get to a lightsaber. So be careful when fooling with its programming.
And, of course, it’s still an enormously powerful laser, the most powerful you can buy without being a scientist or a government employee. Running on, believe it or not, two double-A batteries, you can adjust the power from reasonable to excessive. It comes with four modes: Momentary, Constant, Strobe, and Bypass, all of which are pretty self-explanatory. Like all of Wicked’s products, the case is made from aluminum and it comes with a safety switch so your little brother doesn’t blind himself trying to pretend he’s a Jedi.
Also, sorry, but this only comes in green, for now.
A Gimmick, But A Neat One
Yeah, this is undeniably a gimmick; there’s not much you can use this laser for aside from goofing around, and it seems unlikely hacking it will be anything other than a goof, either. On the other hand, it’s surprisingly reasonable for $200, and let’s face it, how often do you get to run around with a powerful laser?
Dan Seitz is an obsessive nerd living in New England. He lives in the Boston area with a fiancee, a dog, a cat, and far too many objects with processors.