SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics): 2D Files Format for Laser Cutting

SVG  is a 2D file format. It is used to describe vector graphics. It was initially created by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C).


Comparison of a vector image and a raster image

Description of the SVG file format

  • An SVG file doesn't decribe an image and its content pixels by pixels like usual formats. Instead, it includes information to describe the shapes in the image, which makes it lighter than JPG or PNG files.
  • As it describes an images with its shapes, it is possible to rescale the file without losing any quality. This is why it is format regularly used by illustrators or product designers. 
  • An SVG file is based on XML, so it can be edited by a basic text editor.
  • It is an Open Format, which makes it usable by a lot of people.

How to create and/or use an SVG file?

Here are some of the software enabling you to create SVG files:

You can also work on SVG files with other software by using extensions, such as:

  • Blender (using the Freestyle SVG Exporter addon)
  • SketchUp (using the FlightOfIdeas plugin)

When to use SVG Format?

The SVG format became more and more used in the last years, and showed its effectiveness compared to the other images formats. The SVG files are smaller than the others, and the shapes do not change when being scaled up or down.

A lot of web browsers are now working with the SVG format, which again shows its versatility.

The only disadvantage we may find while using it is that there are no proper units in the final file. For example, if you want to laser cut an SVG file, it may be hard for us to determine precisely the dimensions of your object.