What's new here?

Lasers, we do love our lasers! From the classic Red, to the bright Green, to the sneaky, changing Violet we love the fact that we can have such a unique pointing device in our hands.

But laser pointers have undergone a few changes in recent years, and some of the changes may be hard to figure out. Times were they were all like flashlights: one end would screw off and you would insert the batteries (AAA or button cell). They would resemble this laser pointer:

But more recently the lasers will unthread in the center, like so:



When this design showed up on the market, there was a bit of backlash. Many considered it a sign of cheapness because center-break laser pointers invariably were seen as being from Chinese manufacture. But this was a bit odd because by the time they came to the market almost all laser pointers were of Chinese manufacture.

However this design soon took over the laser pointer market, and it was not too hard to figure out why: It meant less chance of destroying your laser pointer when checking or changing the batteries.

You see, far too many laser pointers have been rendered useless by the loss of that battery cover on the back-opening model. Its a small, round object, prone to easily slipping out of your hand (and rolling away), or being put down and lost. Its a tiny thing and much too vulnerable. Odd that when laser pointers were very expensive (seriously, there was a time where a Green laser pointer was $500 and a Red Laser Pointer would be $50-100) that this was the design, but now that lasers are much less expensive the center-open design is in charge.

The center-opening model is much less likely to have a part lost. Both pieces are of equal size, and being larger cylinders will not roll as fast as the disc cap of the rear-opning model. They probably won’t roll much at all with the on/off button on one half and the pocket latch on the other half limiting how much the laser pointer parts can roll.

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