In this Anycubic Photon Mono X review, we go into details of the resolution, settings, features and quality of print you should expect from the 3D printer.
Anycubic Photon Mono X Review
The new Anycubic Mono X 3D printer represents a complete rethinking of Anycubic’s resin 3D printers. The Mono X has a new body, new matrix with 4K resolution, Wi-Fi, and even a curing device: the Anycubic Wash & Cure 2.0 .
Apart from that, the Anycubic Mono X does not have many changes from its predecessor, as we’ll see in this review.
What’s in the Box?
The box comes with a standard 3D printer set. Here is what is available in the box:
- A set of tools
- An iron spatula
- A USB flash drive
- A Wi-Fi antenna
- A mask
- Rubber gloves
- 5 filament filters
- A plastic spatula (to prevent the fragile filament on the bath from tearing)
- Spare bolts for the resin bath
Generally, we were pleased with the rich package bundle.
The Anycubic Mono X has an external power supply, just like in older models. The power supply output is 6A. Most of the power will go to the printer’s spotlight.
This printer also has rubber feet.
Appearance and Design
The printer’s plastic body has been replaced by an all-metal base with a yellow protective cap. On the right is the USB port, power input and switch. On the top side, there is a Wi-Fi antenna input.
The printer has a reliable column made of thick aluminum. Two massive rails are fixed on the column, along which the printbed moves, driven by a T8 screw.
The print bed has also changed. As before, it is made of anodized steel. However, the anode is removed from below and the surface is milled. This helps to improve adhesion of the models to the bed.
The calibration system is now 4 bolts; 2 on each side. We think that the old ball joint system could not support the weight of the enlarged table.
The print volume has also gotten bigger. Compared to Anycubic Photon S, the printable area has increased threefold to 192 x 120 x 245 mm.
There are no major changes on the bath. However, it is now more convenient to use. The expanding shape prevents resin level rise and overflow. There is also a special groove in the corner that makes it easier to replace the material.
4 legs are at the bottom of the bath. On the printer, the legs act as centering pins before securing the bath with screws. In general, this is all that can be said about this printer component.
The Anycubic Mono X has undergone the largest modernization in terms of electronics. To begin, the LCD display is an 8.9″ monochrome, black and white, with 4K resolution (3840 x 2400 pixels).
The XY accuracy is 0.050 millimeters or 50 microns, which is very good for an average budget printer of this size. This is a tangible plus of the printers resolution stems from its monochrome. After all, monochrome displays have a much higher light transmittance, which means more light will fall on the material. This is why the printer can print so quickly.
The new searchlight, located under the display, also plays an important role. Having the searchlight under the display is better than having one powerful LED in the center and a reflector. When the searchlight is under the display, the illumination is more even and does not diminish towards the edges.
The light emitted by the spotlight has a wavelength of 405nm, which is suitable for most photopolymer resins. As such, you can use this printer for a wide range of applications.
Time to stock up on alcohol as we begin testing this printer.
But before starting our test, the printer needs to be calibrated. The calibration process is simple:
- First, loosen the 4 screws holding the table and raise it to the maximum possible position
- Then, fix the table with at least one screw
- Put a sheet of paper on the printer display, not forgetting to remove the protective film from it.
- In the Tools> Move Z menu, click on the house. The table will lower to the minimum position.
- Release the screws that secured the table so that it presses the paper.
- Tighten the screws, click on the screen “Z = 0” and agree with what the printer offers.
At this point, the calibration is complete.
For tests, we used 4 types of resin. To begin, we printed a small test model using the eSun Standard Gray resin.
Wash & Cure 2.0
After printing the first model, it was time to get acquainted with the second device from our review – the Anycubic Wash & Cure 2.0.
Let’s quickly go over the configuration.
In addition to the curing station, there is everything you need to work with it.
The Anycubic Wash & Cure 2.0 is an upgrade of the initial Anycubic Wash & Cure curing station.
The first changes in the latest model can be seen in the wash tank. Now, you can keep it closed during the work cycle. Moreover, the nets are fixed directly to its inner walls. The tank does not stink nor splash.
The rotating table has been made transparent and a reflector has been added to it. For the power supply, we have 36 watts, which is less than that the previous model. Hopefully, this does not make the device shine even weaker than before.
Well, let’s start processing the model.
To begin, we install the reservoir and fill in isopropyl alcohol. The model is small. Therefore, one and a half liters of alcohol will be enough.
Next, we install the mesh with the model inside, turn on the “Wash” mode, and choose the time we need and run it for washing.
Every minute, the motor changes the direction of rotation to flush material from all the recesses of the model.
When the washing is over, the model has to be dried to prevent white streaks from appearing during exposure.
We set up the table, not forgetting to put the reflector down, put the model, cover it all with a cap (it will not start without it) and set the model to be illuminated.
There are also some changes in the diodes. A reflector in the front and a radiator in the back were screwed to them. The backlight is quite bright. The radiator part is not particularly hot, which means the installed diodes are highly efficient.
Quality of Print
Now, let’s look at a completely finished model.
For some reason, the resin in this jar gives off some green, although everything was in order with the previous one. This may be due to a defective bank. Still, the model came out nicely apart from its appearance.
There is nothing to seriously criticize the model about. The letters on both the sides and the top came out very well. Even the spiral in the center did not lead despite the high printing speed.
Some small vertical stripes are visible on the walls. These stripes are caused by a large fraction of the material itself. You cannot catch the stripes with a fingernail, which means that their size does not exceed the 50 microns that the manufacturer declared. In general, this is not critical and does not affect the appearance of the model in any way.
Overview of the second model
For the next test, we printed a snowflake. Since we don’t have white materials, we printed the snowflake using blue eSun Hard Tough. There are a lot of small details in the model and this resin is just right.
We printed the model on supports, at an angle. When printing, the material adhered to the print bed excellently. This is a good thing, as stability is an important factor for quality prints.
Our model was printed.
While the snowflake model was was being printed, we printed an inclined table holder add-on for the printer on Anycubic Mega S. I don’t think it’s worth explaining how useful the add-on is. You can download the model here .
Since the model was printed at an angle of 20 degrees, you can see layers over its entire surface. The layers are not felt with a fingernail. Therefore, we will not consider this a defect.
Next, it was time to remove the model from the supports. This is not easy and we to use wire cutters.
Hard Tough is a great material if you want print something durable. The snowflake does not break at all.
The third model was a lock made of Phrozen Rapid Black Water Washable resin . The Anycubic Mono X prints very quickly. The model, which is 4.5 centimeters high, took a little less than an hour and a half to print, with an exposure time of 1.2 seconds.
After washing and re-illumination, we got a quality model with no faults. Everything printed perfectly. We were especially pleased with the places where there are through windows, because the roof after them is printed on very thin legs. With inclined surfaces, everything is fine too.
Lamination did not appear despite the fact that the model was printed with a layer of 50 microns. This is a large thickness by the standards of photopolymer printers.
We decided to print something much bigger with the Phrozen resin. We went with Lara Croft’s model, which is 16 centimeters high. After about seven hours, the model was ready.
After printing, we calculated the printing speed by diving the print height by time. The printing speed was 21 millimeters per hour.
Now, let’s take a look at the resulting model.
Everything turned out great. However, it’s worth noting that the support was done in another program before loading it into the proprietary slicer. We opted for this because we had issues with installing the proprietary program.
Well, now it’s time to take stock.
Overall, we liked the Anycubic Mono X printer. The technical stuffing and mechanics do not lead to any issues. The large build volume and fast printing speeds for that kind of money is a very good result. The printer is a great alternative to more expensive options from other manufacturers.
The main competitor of the Anycubic Mono X is the Phrozen Sonic Mighty 4K.
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With this in mind, let’s move on to discussing the shortcomings of Anycubic Mono X.
What to Be Aware Of
The Photon Workshop software version 2.1.24 RC7 that comes with the printer is a disappointment. To begin, the software has a “crooked” interface that does not support full-screen pull-down menus. Moreover, it ignores the set settings for the resin when slicing. Finally, it does not have the ability to adjust the profiles for any other resins.
The problem is partially solved by installing the RC8 patch, which is, however, not an official patch. While the patch does not completely solve all the problems of the official version, it at least applies the settings when cutting and remembers them.
The resin profiles are also not customizable. Hopefully, with the next update, this printer will appear in Chitubox.
Finally, all knobs on the printer are made of ABS plastic. Therefore, they do not tolerate contact with acetone. Touching the knobs with acetone will leave them sticky and with white stains.
Once again, the Anycubic Mono X is a really good printer. All the complaints come down mainly to bad software and unrealized functions.
Coming to the updated Wash & Cure 2.0 it is more convenient and works well. However, despite all the improvements, the station remains a home segment device and is not suitable for professional tasks. This is because of its low illumination power compared to most other cameras on the market.