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Bleaching of the saturable absorber by pump light increases the length of the pulse generated in a passively Q-switched Nd:YAG/Cr4+:YAG microchip laser and decreases the pulse energy. This effect is greatest when transmitted pump light is nearly focused in the Cr4+:YAG and when pumping is sufficiently intense to bleach the absorption of the Nd:YAG. Both effects are important in short-pulse microchip lasers. The maximum repetition rate of a passively Q-switched Nd:YAG/Cr4+:YAG microchip laser is correlated with the pulsewidth. In general, it decreases as the pulsewidth gets shorter.