AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K review
The AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K offers a large print bed, without sacrificing on print quality.
Once you got the screen protector on (or thrown it in the bin in a fit of rage), the rest of the setup is nice and easy though. The AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K has a 3.5 inch color touchscreen that is used to control the device. We found the touchscreen to be accurate and responsive, and the menus are all laid out sensibly.
(Image credit: Future)If you’re new to 3D printing, be aware that resin is super nasty stuff. You should wear gloves, eye protection, and a face mask at all times when using it. If you do get it on your skin or hands, wash them immediately as it’s quite a nasty skin irritant. It should go without saying, but also don’t swallow it, and store it far out of reach of children and pets.Read more: SPACE.com »
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: Set-up Like most AnyCubic printers that we’ve worked with, the AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K was mostly a breeze to assemble and get set up. There is no major assembly required, you just need to attach the build plate to the main body of the printer. Then you simply plug in the device and switch it on. We’re assuming you spotted that mostly qualifier a couple of sentences back though. To protect it’s fancy 6K screen, the AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K comes with a screen protector that you have to install yourself and we found it to be an absolute nightmare, to the point where we just didn’t put it on. We made multiple attempts following the instructions, but we just could not get the protector to go on without air bubbles, and the advice to push them out using the plastic scraper didn’t work either. Once you got the screen protector on (or thrown it in the bin in a fit of rage), the rest of the setup is nice and easy though. The AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K has a 3.5 inch color touchscreen that is used to control the device. We found the touchscreen to be accurate and responsive, and the menus are all laid out sensibly. Image 1 of 2 Image 2 of 2 (Image credit: Future) From here, you simply follow the instructions to level the build plate and then you can install the resin vat. Everything is explained clearly in the instructions that come with the printer, and there is even a spare sheet of paper to use when levelling. Levelling resin 3D printers is a lot simpler than their FDM counterparts, so the whole process shouldn’t take you longer than a few minutes. Once you’ve set everything up, you just need to load a print file onto the included USB drive (or use the included test file). Then you fill the vat with resin, put the UV light cover over the printer and set it going. If you’re new to 3D printing, be aware that resin is super nasty stuff. You should wear gloves, eye protection, and a face mask at all times when using it. If you do get it on your skin or hands, wash them immediately as it’s quite a nasty skin irritant. It should go without saying, but also don’t swallow it, and store it far out of reach of children and pets. : Specs and features Large print bed 6K resolution Photon Workshop software needs work The AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K’s standout feature is right there in the name - it has a 6K resolution. This is to accommodate for the larger than usual build plate though, so this doesn’t necessarily mean you’re getting better quality prints than a 4K printer. So the real benefit of the AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K is that you can print larger objects without sacrificing print quality. The print bed is a generous 9.6 x 7.8 x 4.8 in. / 24.5 x 19.7 x 12.2 cm, which is slightly larger than the standard AnyCubic Photon Mono X which topped out at 24.5 x 19.2 x 12.0 cm. More importantly though, the upgraded screen means that the AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K has over twice the pixel count on an almost identical sized screen, which, in theory, means better print resolution. (Image credit: Future) The AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K’s other main party trick is that it prints quickly. The figures that AnyCubic gives are around 8 cm/hr. / 3.15 in./hr, and while this does vary largely based on what you’re printing and what print settings you’re using, we did find that the 6K printed quicker than previous models that we've used. The software that comes with the AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K is Photon Workshop, AnyCubic’s proprietary software. It’s relatively easy to use, though we did have a few issues with it repeatedly crashing when trying to hollow out large models. We checked around the AnyCubic forums and crashes seem to be a relatively common complaint. Fortunately, you don’t have to use this software, with many AnyCubic fans preferring to download Chitubox to use for orientation, hollowing, and support creation, then just slicing the file with Photon Workshop to avoid the issues. It’s a fix, but the fact it’s needed at all is disappointing. : Print quality and speed Large print bed is great for big models (or loads of small ones) Print quality is high Prints fast, but not as fast as claimed To put the AnyCubic Photon Mono X 6K through its paces, we ran it through multiple prints of varying types and sizes. We started out with the test file, which was a wireframe cube with the Anycubic logo displayed inside the cube. It’s a very impressive looking piece of architecture that shows you what resin 3D printers can do. It’s also a good test of the accuracy of the print, as the cube itself is scaled to be exactly 35mm along all its edges. We tested this with a set of digital calipers and found that it was disappointingly off, measuring in at 34mm on all sides. We printed it twice and got the same result, so we think this is actually an issue with the digital model rather than the printer. Image 1 of 3