Good day everyone!
The Anycubic Photon photopolymer printer has achieved phenomenal success among users and not only due to its budgetary cost. Indeed, for affordable money, the manufacturer has developed a solid 3D printer with decent assembly, good print quality and made it very simple and convenient to use. At the beginning of 2019, the expected by many new Photon S came out, which was supposed to be a worthy and improved continuation of the usual Photon .
Let’s compare both printers and find out what are their key differences and what upgrade Anycubic has done.
Anycubic launched the Photon S in 2 colors: black and white (Photon is only available in black). White looks very stylish, but here we are going to look at the black option so that the visual differences are obvious.
At first glance, the printers are identical, outwardly they practically do not differ in anything. The first thing that catches your eye is that the S-version has a plastic case, unlike the metal one for a simple Photon. This decision was probably made by the manufacturer so that the new version does not hit the user’s wallet hard. Due to other improvements, the cost increased (the difference in price is 5000 rubles). Apparently, if the printer remained in the metal case, the difference would be much greater. In terms of body, the old version outperforms the new one, it looks more solid and reliable, but the new printer has become lighter.
Manufacturers have removed the handle from the lid, now it opens with a recess at the bottom.
On the sides of the old Photon, holders-holders were made for ease of transportation; in the S-version they disappeared somewhere. But the viewing windows of the Photon S have become larger on all sides (although in the photo there are brand new printers with protective packaging on glass, this fact is clearly visible).
The vents have also changed:
Now let’s move on to other more significant changes.
- One of the most important upgrades the Photon S boasts is the Z – axis dual linear rail – a thunderstorm of backlash and wobling.
Some users complained that the Photon has Z-axis wobble, so the manufacturers decided to strengthen the axis with a stronger structure, eliminating the vibrations of the printing platform and ensuring more accurate printing, especially of small parts. An optical limit switch is installed along the Z axis.
- Touch screen
The display for printer control, located below, has also changed. According to the old version, there were complaints from users about problems with the touch screen (the sensor periodically did not work or refused to work without a flash drive). Although such problems arose for a few, Anycubic showed hyperresponsibility on this issue, eliminating bugs and making an upgrade.
The Photon S menu has a nicer and more modern design, although there are no new features or significant changes:
Also, in the previous version, the screen was installed at an angle and was in a small niche; in the Photon S, it goes right under the lid with almost no tilt. What is better is difficult to say, someone is comfortable with a slope, someone without. In our opinion, the screen is more convenient to use in the new version, but we would add a slight tilt.
- Upgraded UV module
Another significant change – in Photon S, a UV-matrix with lenses for each diode is installed as a light source against 4 diodes on Photon. The illumination power increased by 10 W. The positioning accuracy in all axes is the same, but the new matrix contributes to a more uniform distribution of the illumination, reduces the risk of stray illumination. In fact, the quality of the printed models has really improved.
- New print bed surface
The print carriage for both models is made of anodized aluminum.
But the Photon S, unlike the smooth anodized printed surface of the Photon, comes with a slightly textured platform for better adhesion.
- Increased print area
The Photon S build area has increased by 10 mm in the Z-axis and is now 115 x 65 x 165 mm. Of course, nothing significant, but on the whole a pleasant and not an extra bonus.
- Carbon filter
The Photon S has got two charcoal air filters instead of one in the previous version. They should more effectively purify the air from not the most useful vapors, and in the working room there will now be less smell of photopolymers, a plus for Photon S. But, of course, they still do not completely eliminate the smell of photopolymers.
There are other changes in software and Slicer for Photon S as well as printed test results. In the future, we will make a separate review devoted to these topics.
- Touch screen
Summing up, we can say that the Photon S has become a logical and worthy continuation of its predecessor. Anycubic has tried to take into account all the requests and complaints of ordinary Photon users, and in fact the 3D printer has really become more elaborate and complete, both in quality, printing speed, and in terms of the appearance of comfortable little things, such as a new touch screen, a double air filter. , increasing the height of the print area, etc. The only moment in which, in our opinion, the new Photon S loses to its older brother, is the plastic case instead of the metal one. This does not affect the print, but it looks more solid and reliable.
As for the cost – the Photon S printer added 5,000 rubles in price. The Photon price is 37,500 rubles, and the Photon S – 42,500 rubles.
Buy a more thoughtful and improved version at a higher price, or stay on the first version, also of very decent quality and deserved recognition among users, it’s up to you.