Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare?

Quite recently, we started selling 3D printers of the Polish brand Zortrax M200 and M300 . We have studied in detail the design of the printers, the proprietary Z-Suite software, the supplied package, and in this review we will share our impressions with you.

A little about Zortrax

In 2011, the development of the M200 3D printer started, and in 2013 the Polish company Zortrax became known throughout the 3D world thanks to its Kickstarter campaign. The campaign was aimed at launching the M200, which promised ease of use and professional quality. The campaign raised $ 180,000. In 2014, the first Zortrax store was opened, and at the moment the brand is already represented in 50 countries of the world with 160 partners.

The M200 has consistently held the top spot in the 3D Hubs community, ranking # 1. Users appreciate the high print quality, reliability and ease of use.

The Zortrax M300 is the big brother of the M200. In M300, the printing area has become much larger (300x300x300 mm). The Zortrax M300 is a really big printer for printing large items =)

Initially, Zortrax were optimized only for printing with in-house plastics. Despite the great variety (currently there are 9 types of filament), many were repelled by the impossibility of printing with third-party plastics. In new versions of the software, manufacturers have solved this problem – the ability to print with third-party materials has been added.

Appearance

The printers are made of durable aluminum and look very solid and reliable. There were no distortions or backlash anywhere. The build quality is excellent.

M200:

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 1

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 2

Zortrax M300 looks exactly the same as M200, it differs only in size) The same strict black color, smoothed corners. The design of the printer can be called minimalistic and concise.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 3

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 4

The printer is controlled through a small display with the already familiar joystick – a twist)

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 5

Equipment

The M200 and M300 have almost the same equipment, only the M300 comes with 2 coils of branded plastic, 2 kg each, the M200 has only one 800 gram coil. And the number of spatulas in the M300 is one more.

Another important difference from the M200 – the M300 comes with plastic side and front panels.

The package includes:

  • Spool holder.
  • Guide tube for material and fasteners.
  • Coil of branded material Zortax (M300 has 2 coils).
  • Power cable.
  • SD card and card reader.
  • Protective gloves.
  • Knife.
  • Scalpel.
  • Hexagon set.
  • Key to unscrew the nozzle.
  • Strings for cleaning the nozzle 0.4 and 0.35.
  • Nippers.
  • Spatula (for M300 – 2 spatulas).
  • Tweezers.
  • Lubricant for moving parts of the printer.
  • Protective glasses.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 6

A very decent kit. Zortrax made sure that the user has everything they need at hand and does not have to buy something extra. There are as many as two spools of plastic, we had HIPS and PETG in the box. Most likely, the types of plastic for printers are chosen at random. Even the nozzle cleaning needle is available in 2 versions – for a nozzle with a diameter of 0.4 and 0.35 (the printer has a 0.4 mm nozzle by default).

Kinematics

The printer kinematics is a copy of the famous Ultimaker. It turned out to be a win-win solution.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 7

On the Z axis, instead of the already familiar trapezoidal screw, a powerful ball screw is installed.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 8

The M300 was very impressed with the thickness of the shafts – almost as large as the index finger:

image broken

The extruder turned out to be all-metal. The maximum heating temperature is 280 degrees. The “cube” of the heater into which the nozzle is screwed is fixed. It’s a trifle, but thanks to this, the nozzle is very easily unscrewed and you don’t have to look for ways to fix the heater.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 9

The feed motor is located on the print head. This is the so-called direct plastic feed. Of course, this makes the printhead heavier, but it allows you to print with all types of plastics, including soft flex and rubber.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 10

The print bed is a bit unusual – perforated like on UP printers.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 11

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 12

The advantage of this solution is very good adhesion (sticking of models to the table during printing). There is no need to use glue or stickers to keep the models from peeling off during printing.

The only inconvenience is that you always have to print on a substrate (raft).

The board is made and designed specifically for the printer. All wires are shielded.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 13

Preparation for work

After unpacking, the printer needs to be prepared for printing: connect the extruder ribbon cable, install and connect the printing platform, calibrate the printer.

The ribbon cable connects very easily – you need to open the top of the extruder and plug the ribbon cable into the connector. It’s nice that the cable is additionally securely fixed with latches.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 14

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 15

We connect the connectors on the platform and install it on the magnetic fasteners.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 16

When turned on, the printer asks to download a file from the manufacturer’s website and save it to a USB flash drive. Without this, the printer will not start. Wi-Fi connection M200 and M300 does not support, files can be transferred only through a USB flash drive.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 17

Download, restart the printer. Everything is working.

The printer menu is simple and convenient. There are points for loading, unloading plastic and calibration. Choosing a calibration.

The printer is “hot” calibrated. We are waiting for the printer to heat up the nozzle and the table. After that, following the instructions on the screen, we calibrate. The printer will alternately poke a nozzle into the metal squares on the platform and ask you to unscrew or tighten a certain screw at the bottom of the platform.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 18

Calibration is complete and you can start printing.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 19

BY

The proprietary slicer Zortrax Z-Suite is used as software for the printer. The printer will not work with other slicers.

To download and run the program, you will have to enter the serial number of the printer.

Z-Suite has a very nice and intuitive interface. We launch the program and select our Zortrax model.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 20

Load the model and place it on the table.

Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 21

Preparation for printing takes place in several stages:

    1. Analysis of the model. The slicer will show the weaknesses and problem areas of the model.
      Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 22
    2. Posting support. Here you can select the angle of overhang of the model at which the support will be set, and slightly edit the support. Support is edited by “blocks”. You cannot add or remove support pointwise.
      Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 23
    3. Print settings. Here you can choose either a ready-made profile for the native Zortrax plastic or set your own settings for any material. The setting range is very decent.
      Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 24
    4. Preview. In the preview mode, you can add pauses at different heights. This is useful if you want to print a multi-colored model.
      Zortrax M200 vs M300: How Do the 3D Printers Compare? 25

The file is saved not in the usual GCode format, but in its own ZCode format.

Outcome

Despite the fact that we have not yet had time to conduct print tests, the printers have already pleased us with their thoughtfulness. Zortrax have shown incredible attention to detail, and it is not surprising that the M200 printer has repeatedly become the best printer according to the version of Make magazine and the specialized Internet site 3D Hubs.

M200 and M300 conquer with their reliability and competent design, the Z-Suite software also delighted with a friendly interface and the presence of the necessary functions. The lack of Wi-Fi connection was a little upsetting, but this was compensated by a very rich bundle. The M300 package includes everything you need for comfortable work, including material for initial work.

Zortrax 3D printers are almost omnivorous, thanks to which they will become good assistants in any production. It remains only to choose the size of the construction area. Perhaps a 200 × 200 × 180 mm print area will suffice. Otherwise, we recommend taking a closer look at its older brother – the M300 with a construction area of ​​300 × 300 × 300 mm.

Leave a Reply