- Save 5% on Photon and FEP Film when you purchase 1 or more Qualifying items offered by ANYCUBIC. Enter code GMS2GJA7 at checkout. Here's how (restrictions apply)
- Save 5% each on Qualifying items offered by ANYCUBIC when you purchase 1 or more. Enter code 6YKLZM45 at checkout. Here's how (restrictions apply)
- Save 5% on photon and white resin when you purchase 1 or more Qualifying items offered by ANYCUBIC. Enter code ILRNMWRZ at checkout. Here's how (restrictions apply)
- Save 5% on photon and gray resin when you purchase 1 or more Qualifying items offered by ANYCUBIC. Enter code FLT8BZRE at checkout. Here's how (restrictions apply)
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ANYCUBIC Photon UV LCD 3D Printer Assembled Innovation with 2.8'' Smart Touch Color Screen Off-line Print 4.53"(L) x 2.56"(W) x 6.1"(H) Printing Size
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Precision: 2K LCD masking screen. 2560*1440(2k)HD masking LCD gives very fine printring details down to few micrometers
Intelligent: Colorful touch screen equipped with Photon system bring new function.You can pre-view the model in SD card like you saw pictires in Windows OS.Real-time display printing process function is available now.
Stable Transmission off-printing in strict sense. Most DLP printer use raspberry Pi to implement off printing function,which is unstable Photon system designed to support off-printing function originally.
UV-LED designed with uniformity and durability:25W UV light source sit inside stainless steel snoot,equip with 80*80mm heat sink,to offer uniform UV light for long serving time.
Speed: Photon slicer brings extraordinary using experience. A 30M stl file will minutes when you use a open-source slicer. While photon Slicer will finish this job wthin 1 minutes.
Creative: Developped Resin Vat FEP film is part of maintenance cost in daliy printing. New resin vat was specilly designed for FEP film to adjust the tightness.
Critical Detail Heave In Slight
High Precision Does Really Matter
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The ANYCUBIC Photon is a well-built little UV LCD bottom up resin printer that can easily sit on a desktop without occupying alot of space. The case design is top-notch. No loose joints, no wobble in the sheet metal, good adjustable feet. I can see that lots of time was spent refining the chassis. Blue acrylic panels match the motif, but do nothing for eliminating undesirable resin cure due to ambient light. I like the design of the build plate with its tilt mechanism for leveling and the blue anodized aluminum is snazzy - the most important part being a planar surface that will proper bond the first resin layer when properly adjusted. The vat design is pretty innovative. From the film capture and tension mechanism to the built-in pour spout, the vat was engineered with the same level of detail as the chassis. The small LCD display on the front conveyed all necessary information and functionality, but it appears some black debris was caught between the LCD screen and the overlay, which was quite obvious whenever the LCD was active. Font selection and color can use some tweaking for improved readability, but that is easy enough to fix with a firmware update.
Print-wise, once I dialed in on a setting for my castable resin things were going well. Under closer inspection, I started to notice some issues that would be easy to deal with or unusable when the model was cast in metal.
1) Under magnification, you can see the individual pixels on flat surfaces. This is similar to the screen door effect which was most noticable on early DLP and LCD projectors. Between each pixel there is a gap and since the LCD mask is right under the vat, there is very little distance for the light to diffract around the pixels to blend in. This type of problem can be dealt with during polishing, so not something too bad.
2) There are reports that some of the printers have issues with the Z-axis exhibiting wobble. My machine had a slight wobble that was obvious on surfaces perpendicular to the vat. This can be a very minor issue to something that can't be fixed by polishing. ANYCUBIC has posted a video on how to tighten up the Z-axis sled that holds the build plate, but it does require you to take down your printer and disassemble it. Maybe some thread locking compound on key screws/bolts would prevent them from going out of alignment?
3) Loss of fine detail. I did some tests with different rings I've created in CAD and one of the most difficult tests is with fonts engraved into the surface of the ring. I found that some of that fine detail was lost in my prints, and I don't think it is necessarily due to the resolution of the LCD mask. I think it is a combination of the tension of the vat film as well as the UV LCD mechanism in general. When the film is super-tight, the peeling mechanism isn't as gentle as you would like. When the print snaps off the film, the cured resin can be damaged or distorted. The next layer then prints on top of the damage/distortion and you start to see wrinkling, folding or loss of support for the next layer. This means small details like prongs or engravings could be damaged and result in the print being scrapped. I have a DLP-based resin printer with a HD projector (1920x1080) that is able to provide me with the fine detail using the same resin, however that printer costs 7x as much as the Photon and it 4x as large!
So it is with regret that I send it back. UV LCD printers have come a long way since the iBox Nano printer was on Kickstarter and was the first real LCD printer I encountered. It worked but the resolution was horrible, seriously impacting its usefulness other than as a toy or curiosity. I think for other users, like model makers, figures and even potentially dental labs, the ANYCUBIC Photon could be an excellent entry into resin printing. For jewelry use or other precision applications with fine millimeter/sub-millimeter detail, not so much.
As others have said, YES, the resin smells and it is messy to handle but the end result was so good for me that I'm willing to put up with that. My solution: open a window. Another con: The green resin provided is enough to get started, but 250ml. is not enough and unfortunately Anycubic's site only lists white, black, gray and yellow. I would like to buy liter bottles of the green but I'm sure they'll get around to offer it.
Overall I'm very satisfied with the results therefore 5 stars. Hopefully once Anycubic meets demand they will get around to offer parts as well as I'd like to get extra build plates and vats.
Compared to the A8, the Photon is smaller, faster, neater, and more accurate; however, FDM and DLP are very different processes*, and the Photon deserves praise in its own right as a resin printer:
Machine is solidly built, weighty, with a quality feel
Incredible resolution- can make tiny parts with accuracy
Minimal (one!) moving parts
Multiple models on a build plate don’t add to the build time (unlike FDM)
One failed model does not spoil the whole build (unlike FDM!)
Small desktop footprint- neat and compact
Simple Slicer- for Mac and Windows- with essentially only two variables to tune.
Simple touchscreen interface
As with all resin printers, it’s a bit smelly- but you’ll like the printed results enough to make a fume extract for it; I did, immediately after seeing the first test print!
Smaller build area than FDM- tho adequate for the sorts of items it’s suited to making, and with a surprising amount of height (the Eiffel Tower beckons..!)
Unless you’re building large objects, unlike FDM you don’t get to see the object being made- not really a con, as there’s no need to stay around looking over it!
I can’t count the post-processing as a con; our production department leases a $100k+ SLA machine at work, and I see its models need exactly the same post processing!
There is also a learning curve (I’m on it!) to design for resin printing- but that goes for any resin-based machine.
The machine arrived well-packaged, and fully-assembled, except for the protruding door handle. Once that was screwed on, the hardest part of setting up was getting the packing foam (good quality, not crumbly polystyrene!) out of the build chamber. The build platform is a satisfyingly weighty chunk of aluminium (don’t drop it!), anodised blue, with a solid metal knob to secure it to similarly-solid Z-carriage. The resin tank is also solid anodised aluminium, with a powerful steel clamping system to tension the FEP sheet. It really feels industrial quality.
I had grand plans for my first print, but, sensibly, I decided to start with the example file that’s already on the included USB stick.
It’s about a 5-hour build, so I left it running overnight.
I came down in the morning to find, with nothing other than out-of-box setup, the cube lattice printed perfectly; no tuning or tweaking required!
Since then, I’ve been excitedly downloading from Thingiverse and running STLs through the Photon’s basic, but adequate, and fast, slicer**. Not everything I’ve tried to print has come out- but I put that mainly down to my inexperience. The detail in the parts that have printed is outstanding. While I’m learning, I’m printing most models scaled down to just an inch or so long, and the detail they retain is unbelievable- details that I assume won’t print, do! The great thing with DLP printers is you can put as many parts as you like on the bed, and printing takes exactly the same amount of time, unlike FDM, or even SLA, with a scanned laser. This is great for practicing, as you can try the same part in many different ways, to learn the effect of orientation, and supports, and it takes no longer to print. And if one part fails to print correctly, it doesn’t mess up all the others!
For really instant gratification you can print lithophanes- photographs converted to thicknesses of resin- which only take about 20 minutes.
I’m really impressed with the quality of this printer, and with the quality of its output. Definitely a little gem.
*For those who don’t know (as I didn’t a week ago!), DLP printers work by trapping a thin layer of resin between the Build Plate and a clear plastic (“FEP”) film at the bottom of a tank of resin. UV light from an LED shines up through an LCD shadowmask, which is displaying one slice of the object, and hardens the resin where it is illuminated, sticking it to the build plate. Then the tricky bit happens: the build plate, with the hardened resin attached, moves away from the plastic film, to which the resin is also slightly stuck…. The film stretches, then suddenly peels away from the hardened resin with a slight “snap”. The build plate, with its areas of hardened resin, then lowers back down, trapping a new layer of resin under it, and the process repeats, with the built part slowly emerging from the pool of liquid resin.
Once the print is finished, the build plate moves right up, and surplus resin can be left to drip back into the tank. Then, wearing gloves, you remove the build plate from the machine, and carefully pry the built parts off it, into a bowl of (ideally 95%+) isopropyl alcohol to wash away the remaining uncured resin. Putting the finished model in the sun- or under a suitable UV lamp- finishes the curing process, hardening up the resin to full strength.
**Slicing for DLP is inherently easier than for FDM, as it simply has to produce a bitmap of each layer, at the resolution of the mask LCD.
Most recent customer reviews
Well, overall I have to give the actual printer itself 5 stars...the quality this thing is capable of is ridiculous.Read more