The xTool Creative Space (XCS) and Lightburn, both are laser engraving software. XCS is mainly for the xTool laser engraver users whereas the Lightburn can be used with any type of compatible lasers.
Both the XCS and the Lightburn have plenty of positive sides apart from a few disadvantages.
In this article, we will dive into detailed discrimination and will try to help you choose the best laser control software from these two.
What are the Key differences?
In summary, we found the following differences between XCS and Lightburn:
– Learning Curve:
– LightBurn: Steeper learning curve with a wide range of features.
– XCS: Easier for beginners to learn and use.
– LightBurn: Offers advanced, professional-grade tools for laser cutting, including design, editing, and machine control.
– XCS: Simplified features, but limited compatibility information.
– LightBurn: Supports a variety of laser engravers and cutting machines.
– XCS: Compatibility with different machines is not well-documented.
– XCS: Known for its simple, user-friendly interface.
– LightBurn: Powerful but may require time to master.
– XCS: Free to use, budget-friendly.
– LightBurn: Commercial software, requires purchase.
– AI Integration:
– XCS: Features AI integration for image search, background removal, and text-to-image conversion.
– LightBurn: Lacks these AI features.
– XCS is compatible with PCs, iPad and smartphone
– LightBurn is only workable with computer
Features of XCS & Lightburn
Lightburn comes with tons of laser cutting and engraving features whereas the XCS is easier for beginners.
In a nutshell, someone with a new laser engraving machine can start the work right away with XCS (obviously with the xTool’s lasers) but the Lightburn takes a little bit of time to get used to as the interface is not interactive and user-friendly.
LightBurn and XCS each offer unique features suited for various design requirements. XCS is equipped with fundamental tools ideal for straightforward designs, including vector drawing capabilities, shape generation, text entry, as well as alignment and scaling functions. Conversely, LightBurn comes with an expanded toolkit, which facilitates the creation of intricate designs, giving designers a broader range of creative possibilities.
Imagine you’re setting up a new project with XCS. The interface greets you with a sense of ease. You draw out your vectors, mold shapes, and layout text with a few clicks, appreciating the straightforward alignment and resizing tools. Then comes the magic moment—dragging a new design pattern onto your workpiece and watching XCS effortlessly match it with the existing elements.
Lightburn, on the other hand, is like walking in a workshop with every imaginable tool nearby. You just need to learn to utilize them.
In simple words, there is no click and option in lightburn. You need to set the laser cutting or engraving parameters to make the perfect engraving. For example, there are no presets for engraving tumblers or a Stanley Cup. You need to set the line interval, power, speed, and image mood to start your engraving. However, changing image modes is easy in Lightburn as it shows the preview.
Lightburn is a standalone software that supports almost every laser machine except the Glowforge (as it is their business policy to retain customers). So, if you know the Lightburn functions, you can fit it with any other laser machine as well.
However, the xTool Creative Space is solely for the xTool laser machine which means, that if you switch from the xTool to other laser engravers, you will need to get comfortable with the Lightburn setting parameters from the beginning.
Lightburn is a subscription-based laser control software though it is freely available only for one month. We tried uninstalling the Lightburn and reinstalling again but that did not work. So, if you choose to use Lightburn, you need to buy with no other choices left.
In Comparison, the XCS is software but only works with the xTool laser machine.
The best part of the XCS is that it is already integrated with the image AI that helps you to remove image background, search for similar images, and even convert the texts into images. Whereas the AI-based image editing facility is not yet available in Lightburn.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is LightBurn better than xTool?
In terms of functionality, the Lightburn is surely a better workspace than the xTool Creative Space (XCS). However, the XCS is good for beginners who are not comfortable with the Lightburn canvas settings.
Can you use LightBurn with xTool?
Yes, almost every laser model is Lightburn compatible which means you can work on both XCS and Lightburn workpace with your xTool lasers.
In summary, XCS is a more user-friendly laser software mainly suitable for beginners who cannot afford Lightburn initially. However, Lightburn is a vast software with tons of tools and with the help of these, you can do any type of laser engraving with no additional effort.