In the old days, creating 3D things that you designed yourself required a number of time-consuming procedures, making it a challenging task. But with the advent of 3D printers, it has become much simpler. All you really need to do is feed the design to the printer and connect it to the material to get started. But which option is the best?
Although much between the two printers remains the same, the Mars 3 Pro has some new amazing features such as increased build volume, air purification, and glass protection with only a $20 raise in price. If these things are negligible for you, then Mars 3 is also an amazing option.
These days, 3D printers are easier to use and more affordable. Various problems arise though, such as which 3D printer should a customer purchase given the variety on the market? Would it be worth the money asked for in the price tag? How does the print quality compare? And similar inquiries.
Read this article to help answer all these questions!
Comparison of Mars 3 and Mars 3 Pro
It has almost become a tradition for Elegoo to launch a Pro version sometime after the base version of a new 3D printer is released. But each release has features that can speak for itself.
With its Mars 3, a compact form factor MSLA/Resin 3D printer from Elegoo that was inexpensive, simple to operate, and produced prints of such exceptional quality that they appeared almost magical, the company had a significant impact on the recreational 3D printing scene.
Related: How to Get Started in 3D Printing
Elegoo’s newest device, the Mars 3 Pro, aims to supersede the original Mars 3 with this upgrade.
Although Mars 3 was very well-liked when it was first released, we’re not sure if it has been able to stand the test of time. Competitors have since then released better, and more advanced alternatives compared to the Mars 3. Perhaps that is one reason why Elegoo felt it important to release an improved version – the Mars 3 Pro.
For the most part, the Elegoo Mars 3 Pro has the same features as the Mars 3. At first, it may even make you wonder what the Pro version really brings to the table.
We decided to take a closer look to help you decide whether the Elegoo Mars 3 Pro really is a worthy upgrade to its predecessor.
Print Volume & Resolution
There have been no upgrades to the new Mars 3’s print when it comes to volume or resolution. The Mars 3 pro, like the Mars 3, has a 35-micron resolution on its 143 x 90 mm display, which has a resolution of 4098 x 2560 pixels. Many printers have exceeded the 35-micron resolution since the original Mar 3’s introduction.
Though lower micron counts typically seem preferable, the truth is that they will not really affect the print quality for the majority of the designs you print, if not all of them. One could argue that 35 microns should be enough to print highly accurate ultra-fine model details.
There was, however, a change in the build volume. The Mars 3 Pro has a build volume of 143 x 90 x 175 mm, which shows an increase of 10 mm in the Z-axis over the earlier Mars 3 and provides enough space to print models and even sizable batches.
However, at the time of writing, several other resin 3D printer producers have introduced alternatives with even bigger build volumes with 163 x 102 x 180 mm. This is the present situation, at least.
Related: How Small Can a 3D Printer Print?
The display is covered in anti-scratch protective glass, another one of the improved qualities of the Mars 3 Pro.
Screen protection has long been (and likely will continue to be) a controversial subject in online discussion forums and social media groups for resin 3D printer owners. While some believe it to be crucial, others are not as bothered.
Whatever your position, it is safe to assume that you want to avoid any harm to your LCD because it will compromise print quality and might result in future expenses.
A tempered glass cover with a 9H hardness has been introduced by Elegoo for the Mars 3 Pro (as well as the Saturn 2, which was also launched at the same time), which should make the printer’s LCD more scratch resistant.
Additionally, if you still somehow manage to damage it, the anti-scratch screen can be replaced more readily and inexpensively than the LCD below it. Elegoo claims that the anti-scratch glass even improves the light transmission.
The Mars 3 Pro also includes an improved light source, or more precisely, a new light disperser. Similar to the Mars 3, the Pro version has a light-producing COB lens with 36 embedded LED lights. The Fresnel lens that is situated directly below the LCD screen, however, is something new.
Essentially, this configuration enables the collection of more oblique light from the light disperser and more equal distribution across the full build area, particularly in the margins of the screen, where light would generally come from a slanted angle.
Elegoo says that the light homogeneity is 92% as opposed to the previous Mars 3’s 90%. Regardless of where you place your prints on the build platform, as a user, you expect the same outcomes. The homogeneity of light transmittance and, consequently, the surface smoothness and print quality throughout the print area, ought to only be improved by this new set.
Will it really make a noticeable difference? Only testing can confirm that.
Related: How to Design for 3D Printing
While a powerful and consistent light source is necessary for resin 3D printing, it also produces more heat. The Mars 3 Pro addresses this issue by including cooling fans and twin heat-conducting copper tubes for quick ventilation and heat dissipation.
After 6000 hours of nonstop printing, it claims just under 5% light degradation, the same configuration as on Mars 3. The first Mars 3 never felt overheated, regardless of the treatment it received. Even during the longest print jobs, the Mars 3 Pro ought to maintain the same level of cooling as the Mars 3.
Including an activated carbon filter is a hallmark of Elegoo’s Pro versions. The USB-powered charcoal filter first appeared on the Mars 2 Pro, and it has since appeared on the Saturn S (which may easily be labeled Saturn Pro) and now the Mars 3 Pro.
When comparing the base and pro versions, the carbon filtration system’s capacity to minimize the smell brought on by the 3D resin printing process was found to be impressive.
It is hard to determine how effective this technique is precisely, but there was a noticeable difference, which is certainly better than nothing.
The Mars 3 Pro currently retails at $320. We think an additional $20 is a reasonable raise for what you get comparing its predecessor’s release price of $300 (now reduced to $260). For instance, upgrading your Mars 3 with a carbon filter would cost $20 in and of itself.
This is even before the screen protector, a little extra Z-axis height, and a new light scheme are taken into account. The Mars 3 Pro seems like a solid buy if you are looking for the finest resolution for under $300.
Although, the discounted price of the previous Mars 3 is also nothing to laugh at for those searching for a deal.
Additional Features of the Mars 3 Pro
If you’re impressed with the amazing features that the Mars 3 Pro offers at a slight raise in price, check out these other features included in this upgraded version:
The new PFA sheet included with the Mars 3 Pro is designed to improve print detachment, reduced release pressure, and increased printing success rate.
Sandblasted Build Plate
The build plate must have strong adhesion, as opposed to the FEP, where you would like an easy removal. During testing of the base model, the sandblasted build plate showed great success. This is the same plate that the Mars 3 Pro uses as well.
Compatibility with ChiTuBox and Lychee
The Mars 3 is equipped with the entry-level ChiTuBox Slicer; however, it can also be operated with ChiTuBox Pro or the well-known third-party slicer Lychee.
Like the Mars 3, the Mars 3 Pro can also be accessed via USB connectivity which is located at the front of the machine.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do You Need a Computer for a 3d Printer?
A computer is not required in order to run a 3D printer. This is because mostly all 3D printers come equipped with an SD card reader that is able to read files and begin printing them.
How Long Does It Take to 3d Print Something?
An object can be 3D printed in as little as 30 minutes and as long as 12 hours on average. Depending on how big and intricate your 3D model is, it may also possibly take a few days.
What Materials Can’t Be 3d Printed?
Rocks, wood, linen, and other such materials can’t be 3D printed because they would burn before melting and extruding through a nozzle.
Whether you should buy the Mars 3 or the Mars 3 Pro entirely depends on you and what you need to have in your 3D printer.
But from an objective point of view, the Mars 3 Pro offers some amazing new features with only a slightly raised price of $20. Let us not forget that adding the carbon filter alone could cost you $20.
If you want better resolution, air purification, and glass protection, then you should opt for Mars 3 Pro. But if these things are not important to you, then Mars 3 is also a great choice.