A Nd:GGG(Ca,Mg,Zr) and a Nd:YAG laser were compared when end-pumped by a continuous-wave laser diode. With a 30-mW single-stripe laser diode, 2.4 mW and 4.6 mW of output power were obtained for the Nd:GGG(Ca,Mg,Zr) and the Nd:YAG laser, respectively. With a 1-watt laser-diode array, the output power increased to 223 mW for the Nd:GGG(Ca,Mg,Zr) and 297 mW for the Nd:YAG laser. The Nd:GGG(Ca,Mg,Zr) was also pumped by a 19-watt quasi-continuous-wave laser-diode bar. Side and end pumping were compared. With the appropriate optics the end-pumped geometry was more efficient and gave more power, 47% slope efficiency with 4.3 watts of output power, compared to side-pumped geometry, 16% slope efficiency with 2.6 watts.