Top 5 brands of CNC machines and laser cutters/engravers

Top 5 brands of CNC machines and laser cutters/engravers

In manufacturing, CNC machining and laser cutting/engraving are pivotal in both subtractive and additive processes. CNC machining removes material for desired shapes, while lasers cut/mark materials precisely. These technologies complement each other for crafting intricate designs with high precision. Integrated into a 3D printing workflow, CNC machines aid in post-processing, refining surface finish, or creating custom molds and shapesLaser machines add intricate details or modify 3D printed structures, expanding possibilities in the 3D printing ecosystem for professionals.

Nowadays, thanks to brands like Flux Europe, Mr Beam, Snapmaker, Mekanika, and Creality, CNC machines and laser engravers and cutters no longer only belong to the industrial realm. These leading brands have contributed to making CNC machines and laser cutters and engravers increasingly accessible, compact, user-friendly and versatile, making them extremely popular among enthusiasts and professionals alike. These desktop or medium-size formats offer convenience without compromising on precision, enabling users to bring their designs to life on a smaller scale or internalize manufacturing processes

In this article we present the top 5 brands that offer high-end CNC machines, laser cutting and engraving devices, as well as hybrid solutions that cater to the diverse needs of artisans, engineers, designers, architects and artists in their diverse workflows with a wide range of materials.

Laser cutting and engraving

Flux Europe

Flux Europe, established in 2014 by a dedicated team of young engineers and designers, aims to redefine expectations for desktop laser cutters, making them accessible to diverse users. Collaborating closely with European resellers, FLUX successfully broadens product accessibility across the continent. With over 10000 global users, FLUX remains committed to delivering top-tier resources for creators, ensuring an enhanced creative experience.

In 2019, FLUX introduced Beamo, the world's smallest CO2 laser cutter and engraver. This groundbreaking product offers creators an accessible and straightforward tool for unleashing their creativity. FLUX's product lineup has since expanded to include Beambox and Beambox Pro, smart desktop laser cutter and engravers featuring increased laser power, a larger work volume, and compatibility with a wider range of materials. Additionally, FLUX introduced the Hexa laser cutter and engraver, a faster and more capable machine designed for advanced applications.

Video 1: The Ador color printing laser cutting and engraving machine. Source: Flux Europe.

FLUX transformed the industry once again in 2023 with Ador, the world's first color printing laser cutter, using eco-friendly ink for vibrant designs. In all Flux devices safety is prioritized with the compact Beam Air air filtering system. Ongoing innovation includes versatile add-ons, allowing users to explore ideas conveniently. Flux laser machines, modular and upgradable, process diverse materials like wood, acrylic, fabric, and more.


Snapmaker, renowned for its versatile hybrid solutions like Snapmaker 2.0 3 in 1 and Snapmaker Artisan, also created the Snapmaker Ray laser cutting and engraving machine. This cutting-edge device, featuring advanced laser beam combining technology, beam splitters, and beam shaping optics, sets new standards in precision and innovation, fostering limitless creativity. With an intuitive focus lever, crosshair alignment, multiple advanced safety features, the Smart Air Assist feature, and optional enclosure panels, Snapmaker Ray provides impeccable quality and outstanding precision while also ensuring user safety.

Video 2: The Snapmaker Ray laser cutting and engraving machine. Source: Snapmaker.

The Snapmaker Ray excels in material compatibility, offering engraving on a diverse range of materials including wood, metal, glass, stone, leather, fabric, acrylic. Its cutting capabilities extend to various materials, such as basswood, pinewood, plywood, beech, walnut, bamboo, MDF, leather, fabric, canvas, corrugated paper cardboard, plastic, dark acrylic, and even stainless steel. The machine's versatility, coupled with safety certifications and user-friendly features, positions Snapmaker Ray as a pinnacle in laser cutting and engraving technology.

Mr Beam Lasers

Mr Beam Lasers is dedicated to producing desktop laser cutters and engravers with a key advantage - versatility with a wide range of materials without smoke or harmful particles thanks to the Mr Beam air filtering system. The Mr Beam II Dreamcut, the brand's flagship product, is a plug-and-play device that serves as a cost-effective alternative to traditional laser cutters. Thanks to its generous work surface and safe design, Mr Beam II Dreamcut is particularly suitable for technical offices or architectural studies.

Video 3: The Mr Beam II Dreamcut laser cutting and engraving machine. Source: Mr Beam Lasers.

With Mr Beam II Dreamcut, designs can be created in any program, exported to supported formats, and easily uploaded to the Mr Beam Laser bench application. The machine's integrated WLAN ensures fast and uninterrupted connections from any location, making it ideal for events like trade fairs. The machine also stands out with its integrated camera in the safety cover, allowing easy alignment of the design with the sheet material and thus optimal material utilization. Mr Beam II Dreamcut supports various materials such as plywood, balsa wood, leather, kraftplex, paper, felt, fabric, cardboard, grey cardboard, foamboard, acrylic, latex, anodised aluminium, foam rubber, mirror, basalt fabric, PVC, PP, PET, PLA and ABS.


Creality, primarily recognized for its 3D printers, expands its product portfolio with various technologies, including the Falcon 2 laser engraver introduced in 2023. This device boasts a smart design, multiple safety features, and a triple monitoring system. The Falcon 2 arrives practically assembled, ensuring easy setup, and despite its compact desktop size, it delivers remarkable power and quality.

Video 4: The Creality Falcon laser cutting and engraving machine. Source: Creality.

Utilizing FAC spot compression technology with four potent laser diodes, the Falcon 2 achieves 22 W of power, enabling an engraving speed of 25000 mm/min. These impressive capabilities enable the Falcon 2 to cut stainless steel sheets (0.05 mm), wood planks (15 mm), and black acrylic sheets (10 mm) in a single pass, ensuring a smooth and uncharred surface, thanks to the incorporated Air Assist feature. Additionally, Falcon 2 exhibits the capability to engrave in color.

CNC machining


Mekanika, established in 2018 in Belgium, is a company with the mission of aiding users in prototyping and producing small series through the use of high-quality open-source modular tools and machines. The company's product range includes the EVO, PRO, and FAB CNC machines, accompanied by numerous accessories and add-ons that enhance the versatility, ease, cleanliness, and safety of working with Mekanika CNC machines.

Video 5: The Mekanika EVO CNC machine. Source: Mekanika.

The Mekanika EVO, a compact modular CNC machine, is offered in three sizes: S, M, and L. Derived from the term "evolution," EVO signifies its nature as an evolving machine, designed to grow with the user, expand, and be customized. Constructed with robust materials and premium components, EVO provides high-speed machining with precision, intuitive operation, and various connectivity options. It has demonstrated its capabilities with a variety of materials, including wood, metal, and plastic. Adopted by craftsmen and SMEs in Belgium, such as a ceramic workshop, a cargo bike company, and a carpenter's workshop, the EVO can also collaborate with a 3D printer for creating multi-piece and multi-material objects.

Video 6: The Mekanika EVO vs. PRO CNC machine. Source: Mekanika.

The Mekanika PRO CNC machine, similar to the EVO in many aspects, additionally features 6 inductive limit sensors on its sides to facilitate the homing process. Upon starting, when all 6 limit switches turn green, it indicates the PRO CNC is ready to operate. Like all Mekanika machines, the PRO is built for durability, with components requiring minimal maintenance and guaranteeing easy replacement. Mekanika highlights that 80% of the machine's components are standard, ensuring users can easily find replacement parts or fix the machine independently, even utilizing custom-made 3D printed replacement parts.

Video 7: The Mekanika FAB CNC machine. Source: Mekanika.

The Mekanika FAB CNC machine is a user-friendly modular CNC machine with a spacious work surface, compatible with a variety of materials. Available in two versions – the standalone FAB CNC machine or the FAB CNC Bundle with included addons – a dust collection system, an end mill kit with 7 high-quality end mills for diverse material and shape creation, a spoilerboard kit, a 13.3-inch touchscreen, and a wireless custom keypad. Similar to the EVO and PRO, the FAB CNC machine is robust, reliable, precise, and safe, capable of working with materials ranging from wood and cork to metals like aluminium and steel. Ideal for series production, the FAB CNC machine significantly reduces lead times and boosts productivity for creators and craftsmen in workshops or studios.

Hybrid solutions


Snapmaker stands as the creator of the pioneering 3-in-1 desktop machine encompassing 3D printing, laser cutting and engraving, and CNC machining. Currently, Snapmaker offers two products to users: Snapmaker 2.0 and Snapmaker Artisan, complemented by a range of add-ons and consumables essential for diverse projects, including material sheets, hotends, drill bits, air purifiers, rotary modules, and more. Having these three functionalities within one device only allows for the crafting of complex, multi-component objects with a much higher degree of independence, flexibility, efficiency and affordability. An example of what can be made is this 3-in-1 "Hills" box designed and made by the designer gazzaladra on the Artisan 3-in-1 machine. More about this project and instructions on how to make this box can be found on the Mekanika website.

The 3-in-1 box Hills by designer gazzaladra made using all 3 functions of the Snapmaker 3-in-1 3D printer

Image 1: The 3-in-1 box Hills by designer gazzaladra made using all 3 functions of the Snapmaker 3-in-1 3D printer. Source: Creality.

Snapmaker 2.0, a modular 3-in-1 device, comprises a 3D printing module, a CNC machining module, and a laser engraving and cutting module. Available in two sizes, it empowers users to unleash their creative potential across various materials such as polymers in filament format, hardwood, PCB, acrylic, POM, carbon fiber sheets, paper, plywood, leather, acrylic, cardboard, fabric, and even food items like biscuits and coconuts. The protective enclosure not only safeguards against laser exposure but also minimizes dust, smoke, and noise, preventing warping during 3D printing. Enhanced with WiFi and USB connectivity, an intelligent touchscreen, a built-in camera, automatic leveling, and filament detection, Snapmaker 2.0 ensures an enjoyable and smooth manufacturing experience.

Video 8: The Snapmaker 2.0 3-in-1 machine. Source: Snapmaker.

Snapmaker Artisan mirrors the functionalities of Snapmaker 2.0, offering 3D printing, CNC machining, and laser cutting/engraving within a single unit. Artisan, distinguished by its larger size and increased strength, incorporates a dual extrusion 3D printing module, a 200 W CNC carving and cutting module, and a 10 W laser engraving and cutting module. The CNC machine, housed in a laser-proof enclosure with an integrated emergency button and safety features, transforms into a potent multipurpose tool suitable for private users, small businesses, workshops, or art studios.

Video 9: The Snapmaker Artisan 3-in-1 machine. Source: Snapmaker.

Noteworthy improvements include higher working speed, temperatures, and precision, along with expanded compatibility with various materials in all modes. Artisan's efficiency and versatility are further demonstrated by the option to selectively heat specific zones of the workspace. Compatible with a diverse range of materials, including soluble support materials, breakaway PLA, PA-CF, PA-GF, and ASA, Artisan's capabilities extend to processing materials like basswood, leather, brick, slate, stainless steel, anodized aluminum, corrugated board, MDF, beech, pine, plywood, jade, carbon fiber board, HDF, copper-clad plate, and epoxy tooling material.

Infinite possibilities

Incorporating a CNC machine and a laser cutting and engraving device, or a 3-in-1 machine, into any workflow yields a multitude of advantages. Firstly, these versatile tools significantly enhance precision and efficiency in material processing. The CNC machine excels in carving and cutting various materials, from wood and metal to plastics, offering unparalleled accuracy and intricate detailing. Simultaneously, the laser cutting and engraving device provides a quick and precise method for shaping and embellishing materials like acrylic, leather, and even food items. The combination of these two technologies in a 3-in-1 machine ensures a comprehensive solution for diverse projects, streamlining workflows and reducing the need for separate equipment.

The manufacturing possibilities with CNC machines and laser engravers and cutters

Image 2: The manufacturing possibilities with CNC machines and laser engravers and cutters. Source: Creality.

In the realm of 3D printing workflows, the integration of a CNC machine and laser cutting/engraving device brings about transformative benefits. The CNC module allows for post-processing of 3D-printed objects, enabling users to refine and carve intricate details, creating a seamless transition from digital design to physical output. Additionally, the laser cutting and engraving feature adds versatility by precisely cutting support materials, enhancing the quality of the final 3D-printed products. The cohesive synergy of these three functions in a single machine not only optimizes space but also empowers users to explore new creative dimensions, providing a comprehensive solution for both prototyping and production needs within a unified and efficient workflow.

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