We have reviewed the Lulzbot Taz 6 earlier this year and quite frankly loved it. If you're looking for a 3D printer that offers you total flexibility from both size of your prints to the filament that you use then the Lulzbot Taz 6 is firmly the best 3d printer on the market. In this review we're looking at it's baby brother, the Lulzbot Mini desktop 3d printer. Can it really be as good as it's bigger brother? Remember, Lulzbot printer are open designed printers meaning that whilst they can print using over 30 different filaments, you will need ventilation if you're going to use chemical based filaments.
LulzBot Mini Desktop 3D Printer Review
The LulzBot Mini Desktop 3D Printer is the smallest model from printing experts LulzBot, and comes with a print build volume of 5.9”x5.9”x6.3” and a completely open frame, which means that both the print bed and single extruder are moveable. It also means that you can see the complete building process, though this design frustratingly can cause somewhat of a high-pitched noise along with an unpleasant odour.
Where this one perhaps shines best is in the ease of its setup. Many 3D printers are notoriously difficult to set up once unboxed, but this one is almost foolproof. You connect this up to your computer with the included software, follow the instructions and you’re good to go. If you find the idea of setup intimidating, or if this is your first 3D printer, this might well be a great reason to go for this one. This also makes it a good choice if you’re keen to work with students or in an education setting.
This model can work with a massive amount of different filaments, including ABS, PLA, HIPS, PVA and plenty more. Where some printers aren’t so versatile, this one really is fantastic. The machine is also setup to anticipate and adapt to future filaments which become available, so it’s not going to be rendered obsolete anytime soon. The versatility of this model also means that you can use filaments from a variety of companies – not just those made by LulzBot.
The build quality with this is very good, and it prints both at high and normal resolutions. This isn’t the best print quality on the market, but it offers good models with good consistency. Where other printers can create complete misprints, the worst this will usually offer you is a good print with slight flaws. The layering on the models can sometimes be a little off and a little obvious, but the prints otherwise look good, and are quite well-formed. It also builds fairly quickly, and the heated print bed seems to have very few adhesion problems, which is a very nice touch.
The software with this model is easy to use, of good quality, and open source, all features which make it very appealing. It talks you through the printing process very well, and shouldn’t leave you confused. The machine itself is also very intelligent, and doesn’t require users to align the filament with the platform. This can be a tricky and arduous process with other printers, but with this, it simply isn’t necessary. The nozzles also clean themselves, which can save users a lot of time and trouble.
Overall, this one is a little expensive, and it doesn’t have the best print size, but it really is a fantastic model if you’re looking for something easy to use. It requires very little setup and maintenance, and doesn’t come with the confusion and mess that many 3D printers can. It’s reliable and trusty, and for something so easy to use, the print quality is overall very good. If you want to plug and play, this is the choice for you.