i have a desktop PC out in the barn already so don't think i'll have a dedicated laptop for the cnc.. that might change but figure i can just cut one out if it comes to it
two things keep me coming back to arcdroid, software and footprint
i really like the "trace" feature arcdroid has out of the box
the reason i keep going back to the pro is once you option out the crossfire it's $2500 (vs $3200) and i'd like to be able to just rip a 4x8 sheet down a couple times to put it into the pro vs cutting it all up to get it into the regular crossfire
i have big dreams of making some side $ with it alongside my projects but the reality is it will probably do a lot of sitting and taking up space
Software will always be a battle no matter the machine you go with. The arcdroid also recommends using fusion for CAD and sheetcam for cam.
The arcdroid looks pretty cool though. The cut size is pretty tiny which would be a issue for me.
The nice thing about the regular crossfire, assuming it's cut size works for you, is you can put a full 4x8 on it using some roller supports to support the parts that are hanging off. It basically only has one side that can't have material hanging over.
The pro is similar that you can slide a 4x8 through it. I always start with 4x8 then support the 4' hanging off the front. Then when I finish cutting and need more, I feed it through, if that makes sense.
Also, you'll need to be pretty decent in 2d CAD as well as something like inkscape if you plan to do some more artistic stuff.
Also, also, plasma tables at this level kinda sucks for cut quality unless you spend a ton of time really dialing it in. I only use mine for artsy stuff where the beveled edges won't matter and for prototyping. All my functional pieces I sell are laser cut and shipped to me after confirming the fit using my table.
Also, also, also, you'll need a good compressor and likely a good bit of work to get it dry. Lots use the $$$ refrigerant air dryers. I use series of filters and desiccant but I'm still not dry enough.
These things are definitely a lot of work to set up and get working properly but once you do, it's pretty awesome.