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Lightburn Vs. xTool Creative Space: Which is Right for You?


If you’re venturing into the world of laser engraving, you’ve likely encountered recommendations for various software options. Two popular choices are Lightburn and xTool Creative Space. While both have their merits and limits, they cater to different needs and skill levels. In this article, we'll compare these two options, provide a detailed overview of their pros and cons and offer recommendations based on different scenarios to help you determine which is best suited for your projects.


Lightburn vs. xTool Creative Space

Lightburn and xTool Creative Space are both software programs designed to control laser cutting machines. While XCS is specifically for xTool laser users, LightBurn is a more universal option. Now, let’s dive into the pros and cons of each software, so you can better understand which one is more suitable for you.



  • Robust Vector Editing

Lightburn is a powerful vector editing software where you can create, modify, or prepare vector images for laser engraving and laser cutting. If you aren't familiar with vector files, you can read the article "Why Vector Files are the Best for Laser Cutting." They are the main graphical file format that you'll be dealing with when you are laser engraving. If you've ever heard of Adobe Illustrator or CorelDRAW, Lightburn is essentially a stripped-down version of those programs. While you can't do all of the things that you would do in Adobe Illustrator in Lightburn, you can do all of the things that matter for laser work. What Lightburn does is take the graphic you have on the screen and pairs it with the parameters that you have set. It converts that information into code instructions that your laser understands. 

  • Wide Compatibility

Lightburn supports a broad range of laser machines, including diode, CO2, and fiber lasers. This versatility allows users to manage multiple devices with a single software, streamlining their workflow and enhancing efficiency.

  • Feature-Rich Interface

Lightburn offers a plethora of advanced features such as image tracing, node editing, multi-layer support, and more. These tools enable users to produce intricate and precise designs, making it ideal for professional and complex projects.


  • User-Friendly Experience

Despite its extensive features, Lightburn maintains an intuitive interface, making it accessible for both beginners and experienced users. The software is designed to be user-friendly, reducing the learning curve for new users.

  • Strong Community and Support

Lightburn has an active user community and comprehensive support resources, including tutorials, forums, and customer service. This ensures that users can find help and guidance when needed.



  • Cost

Lightburn is a paid software, which might be a consideration for hobbyists or those on a tight budget. However, the investment is often justified by its extensive capabilities and frequent updates.

  • Steeper Learning Curve

For complete beginners, the range of features might initially seem overwhelming. However, the availability of ample resources and tutorials can ease the learning process.


xTool Creative Space


  • Seamless Integration with xTool Devices

xTool Creative Space is proprietary software designed specifically for xTool laser machines. This ensures seamless integration, compatibility, and smooth operation, making it an excellent choice for xTool device users.

  • User-Friendly Interface

Creative Space boasts a minimalistic and simple design, making it very beginner-friendly. Its intuitive interface allows new users to start engraving with minimal setup and learning time.

  • Free Software(only for xTool machine users)

Unlike Lightburn, xTool Creative Space is free for xTool device users, making it a cost-effective option for those just starting out or working on a budget.

  • Basic Design Tools

The software includes essential tools for simple designs, such as vector drawing, shape creation, text input, and alignment. It also provides access to a project library with ready-to-use designs, which is very helpful for beginners.



  • Limited Advanced Features

Compared to Lightburn, Creative Space lacks advanced features and customization options, which may limit its usability for more complex or professional projects.

  • Restricted Compatibility

xTool Creative Space is only compatible with xTool devices. Users with multiple types of laser machines will find it less versatile than Lightburn.

  • Less Community Support

As proprietary software, updates and community support for Creative Space may not be as extensive or frequent as those for Lightburn.


Which is Right for You:Lightburn vs. xTool Creative Space

Choosing the right laser software depends on your specific needs and skill level. While xTool Creative Space offers a straightforward, budget-friendly option for beginners, Lightburn excels with its advanced features, broad compatibility, and powerful editing capabilities.

For beginners and hobbyists, xTool Creative Space is ideal for new users with xTool devices due to its ease of use, minimalistic design, and cost-effectiveness. It covers basic needs and helps users get started quickly.

For intermediate and advanced users, LightBurn offers advanced features, extensive compatibility, and powerful tools for users looking to take their projects to the next level. It is suitable for complex designs and multi-device management.

For multi-laser environments, LightBurn is perfect for users managing multiple types of lasers. Its broad compatibility and advanced features make it a versatile and efficient choice.

For professional use, LightBurn is best suited for professional users who need precise control, advanced features, and support for complex projects. Its robust capabilities justify the investment.


FAQs on Lightburn and xTool Creative Space

1.Do you have to pay for Lightburn every year?

No, you pay for Lightburn once, and the software will work forever as long as you have your license key.

2.How much is xTool Creative Space?

XCS is free to use with xTool devices, making it a great starter software for beginners.

3.How many computers can I use Lightburn on?

The Lightburn license allows you to use the software on up to three computers simultaneously. These computers do not need to use the same operating system, and the license can be easily moved if you get a new computer.

4.What computer do I need to run Lightburn?

Lightburn will run on Windows 7.0 or later, macOS 10.11 or later, and certain 64-bit Linux versions. Linux users should refer to the Linux Installation details for supported versions. It is strongly recommended to use a computer with a screen resolution of at least 1920x1080 (FHD resolution).

5.Does Lightburn work without Internet?

Lightburn does not require an always-on internet connection to function. Offline activation is intended for computers that are perpetually offline.

6.Is Lightburn compatible with xTool?

Lightburn is third-party software and may not be fully compatible with the xTool M1. Its working principle relies on configuring GCode coordinates rather than sending direct commands to the M1 as xTool Creative Space (XCS) does. Therefore, compatibility issues may arise.

7.Does xTool use Lightburn software?

If you need to control the xTool D1 through Lightburn, you can download the official release of the Lightburn software. Since Lightburn is third-party software, Makeblock Co., Ltd. shall not bear responsibility for any loss caused due to the operation of Lightburn.

8.What lasers work with Lightburn?

Most laser software is tied to very specific types of machines. Lightburn is more flexible and supports three different "classes" of laser controllers: GCode, DSP, and Galvo. Note that all types are supported by the trial version of Lightburn.


Final Words

For those interested in downloading Lightburn, you can purchase it from CREATORALLY at a discounted price. Additionally, check out our selection of laser-cutting designs, all available in Lightburn format, to kickstart your creative laser projects.

By carefully considering your needs and the strengths of each software, you can select the tool that best supports your laser engraving journey, enhancing both your productivity and the quality of your work.


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