LaserBoard vs Ruida questions

Hi all. Happy holidays. A few quick questions… My son and I recently purchased a ChinaCNCZone laser engraver from a local company who used it 3 times and now had no further use for it.

I’d love to upload a few pics to show, but I can’t right now as a new user. Here is a link to a similar machine:

It has a M2Nano board right now and we are considering the conversion to LightBoard and then build our own control panel for it VERSUS purchasing the Ruida control panel instead.

We are 100% new and green to the laser engraver game, so these may be boneheaded questions. Thanks in advance for your awesome answers and patience to boot!

  1. If I purchase the Ruida controller, do I need to purchase the LightBoard? Or is the Ruida controller sufficient and does that controller connect direct to our PC so we can use LightBurn with it?

  2. If I purchase the Ruida controller, do I still need to connect the PC to the M2Nano board or will we simply bypass the M2Nano board??

  3. If I purchase the Ruida controller, do I need to or can I upload SmoothieWare still?

  4. I know what to do if I go with the LightBoard. Your conversion documentation is awesome!

  5. The only part that is holding us up from building our own is knowing where/how to get all the components for the actual control panel (buttons, switches, gauges) and then being able to actually make the panel itself. Is there a guide for that?

Thanks all.

Here are actual pics of the machine, control panel, and board:

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