I tested other budget resin printers before, but never tried a true budget resin printer, like the Anycubic Photon Zero. With a small price point, the Photon Zero looks like a great entry point for any beginner looking to start printing with resin.
Today, I will share my experience with the new budget resin printer from Anycubic. Specifically, the Photon Zero.
Anycubic Photon Zero Packaging
The Photon Zero comes packed in a cardboard box, with ample protection material. Everything is then put in a plastic bag, which protect the printer for any conditions.
Anycubic Photon Zero also includes a few paper filters for filtering resin, a pair of protection gloves, the regular tools and a USB drive containing the slicer software and user manual. Unfortunately, no FEP spare replacement. I would have loved to see one included, considering it’s a consumable that needs to be replaced periodically.
Anycubic Photon Zero Specifications
Anycubic Photon Zero is a small printer. It’s only 180mm * 195mm * 367mm in size. It does not take a lot of space and it’s relatively quiet. On the right side of the printer, there’s an USB port used for print files, the fan exhaust and the ON/OFF Switch.
In the back, we can find the power port and serial number.
|Build size||95 * 54 * 150 mm|
|XY Pixels||854 * 480 pixels|
|XY Resolution||115 µm|
|LED Array||Diffusion UV Led|
|Print Speed||30mm / hour|
|Material||405nm UV resin|
|Z Resolution||10 – 200 µm|
|Z-axis||Single Linear Rail with Lead Screw|
|Power Input||100-240 VAC – 50/60 HZ|
|Max power consumption||30W|
|Printer size||180mm * 195mm * 367mm|
Included with the Photon Zero, you get a good quality plastic vat with markings on the side to easily measure the amount of resin used. It’s a nice and easy to implement feature and I hope other manufacturers will do the same.
Another nice feature of the printer is the build plate. It has a tilted top which helps a lot with dripping resin.
Besides that, the bottom of the build plate is a bit rugged. This helps with the adhesion and I didn’t have any kind of issue with adhesion on the Photon Zero.
The build plate is 95mm * 54mm. Not the most generous amount of print space, but it’s good enough for people who are not looking to print a lot of items. The build plate size can also be considered a drawback for the Photon Zero. You won’t be able to benefit from the possibility of printing multiple miniatures at the same time.
Two miniatures are possible, but nothing over this amount.
Unfortunately, the biggest issue with this printer is the LCD resolution. With only 854 * 480 pixels, the screen cannot reproduce enough details on the X and Y axis. Considering that the Photon Zero is a budget resin printer, I was expecting a lower resolution screen.
In order to improve the XY quality, Anycubic enabled 16X anti-aliasing but I could not see any improvements. The pixels are just too big.
On some prints, the lack of resolution is clearly shown. Fortunately, this issue does not occur with any model, so you should be the judge if it’s good enough.
In order to cool the LED lights behind the screen, a fan is used. This fan turns on only after you start a print. It’s not dead silent, but it’s not annoying either. If the printer is idle, there’s no sound generated by the printer.
When the build plate moves on the Z axis, there’s a specific sound caused by the stepper driver used. Maybe in the future we will see other resin 3D printers moving to quiet stepper drivers, like in the FDM world.
Photon Workshop Slicer
In order to use the Photon Zero, we first need to slice the model trough a slicer software. The Anycubic Photon Zero printer is bundled with Photon Workshop slicer, a custom slicer from Anycubic.
While it’s not the best slicer available, it does the job and it seems pretty fast.
I use Prusa Slicer for adding supports and hollowing the models. Then, I do the final slicing using Photon Workshop slicer.
All the prints below were done with the stock profile included in the Photon Workshop slicer.
Test Prints with Anycubic Photon Zero
Toilet Paper Merchant
The first print I did on the Photon Zero is the Toilet Paper Merchant from MyMiniFactory. The model was printed at a 30-micron layer height. With an 8 second cure time, the result is good, but held back by the screen resolution. So, for the next print, I enabled 16X anti-aliasing.
The second print was the Rogue Bust from Eastman’s Patreon. It was printed using a mix of the Anycubic Grey resin and Siraya Tech Tenacious (80%/20%) to make the printed model less brittle.
The results are good. Unfortunately, the screen’s resolution is the main limiting factor here. The detail on the X and Y axis is not that good. You can easily see some marks on the print, even when using 16X anti-aliasing.
Air Jordan IV Keychain
Next on the list is keychain from Thingiverse. I used the same settings and resin mix as with the other prints. When printing really small items, the resolution hit can be seen on the surface of the print.
I printed this model with 100% infill and directly on the plate. It was nice to see that there’s no elephant’s foot present.
Gunlutt the Troll Guitarist
Considering that the Anycubic Photon Zero is targeted to people that do a lot of tabletop miniatures, we should check the quality by printing some miniatures.
Gunlutt the Troll Guitarist was printed at 30-micron layer height, with an 8 second cure time.
For a complex and detailed model like this, screen resolution is not that big of an issue. While you can still see some lines on the print, they are not that pronounced and after painting the miniature they will surely vanish.
Zukki the Cellist Troll
Finally, I printed Zukki the Cellist Troll to help start the troll band. The exact same settings were used. This time, supports under the tusks failed and you can see some damage. But this was not caused by the printer. By manually adding some extra supports this can be avoided.
Photon Zero: A Good Budget Resin Printer?
Anycubic Photon Zero is currently one of the cheapest budget resin printers available. If you are looking for a cheap resin printer, and you don’t mind the build plate dimensions and the reduction in XY quality, then the Photon Zero is great!
For the 179$ price tag, you get a decent quality printer capable of satisfying your tabletop miniature addiction.
Considering you can get the Photon Zero for less than 200$, there’s no better time to get into resin printers. If you are planning to spent more than 200$, I think you should reconsider and look for printers with better quality screens. You can get the regular Anycubic Photon for a bit more money, and even the Phrozen Sonic Mini I previously reviewed.
- Beginner friendly resin printer.
- Budget friendly price.
- Accurate movements of the plate.
- Silent operation even with a fan.
- Easy leveling process.
- Low resolution screen that causes lower XY quality for the print.
- The printer fan blows resin smell from the printer.
- The transparent cover is not insulating the printer and resin smell can get out.
Where to buy the Photon Zero Budget Resin Printer?
The Photon Zero from Anycubic can be bought from multiple stores. You can check the links below for the most up to date prices available:
The Anycubic Photon Zero was provided by Gearbest for the purpose of this review. While the article includes affiliate links, all opinions are my own.