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SLA Photon S Vs Elegoo Mars

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3D printers are very convenient because they can create a prototype or an actual object of your design so then we can observe or make sure whether the design is already perfect or needs some adjustment. Depending on your needs there are so many good options out there such as the SLA Photon S Vs ELEGOO Mars printers. These printers are affordable but also work amazing and if you wonder which will fit you the most, do check what they can offer below.

In this article, we are going to give you information about:

  • What to know about SLA Printers
  • What are Photon S and ELEGOO Mars
  • What Photon S and ELEGOO Mars Look Like
  • How are the Specification of Photon S and ELEGOO Mars
  • What’s Difference about Photon S and ELEGOO Mars
  • How are the Performance of Photon S and ELEGOO Mars
  • Photon S Vs ELEGOO Mars

SLA 3D Printer

Technology has come such a long way that we can achieve a lot more conveniently based on what you need to do. One of the best inventions that make your life easier is 3D printers and as the name suggests, they are making a real object out of your digital design and for this convenience we can perform various planning ahead of production or even just as a hobby to create decorative items you fancy. Based on the technology, not all printers are suitable for just any job.

If you are here then SLA or stereolithography is the best option between the two common printers and as you can guess, there are factors to consider when choosing this technology over another popular system like FDM.

Print Size

Many FDM machines like Anycubic Predator Vs Ender 5 Plus are capable of building tall objects depending on the printer’s build plate or how they are programmed to print. But, one thing common in SLA machines is they will build much smaller items due to the limitation of their vat and build plate as well, especially if you are looking for common home use SLA printers. In the low-cost range, many printers’ print sizes are about the size of your phone’s LCD screen as well.

Strength on Each Layer

We all know that 3D printers are building their model layer by layer and there is this peel process that pulls the model off of the build surface after every layer. This is why each new layer must be on a strong foundation in which the best way to ensure it is through support hence model orientation that has a minimal cross-section will reduce peel force.

Rafts and Multiple Support

If you have an FDM machine, rafts and multiple supports are often avoided but this is not the case with resin because support offers overall structure and strength to the model as it is subjected to forces that FDM prints do not need to worry about.

Overhangs and Bridging

One of the reasons why FDM printers are often chosen is because they are convenient and easy to use as well as require less to mind about when printing. Compared to FDM, SLA machines offer no tolerance for overhangs as anything that is not supported will likely break or float away, or in many cases remain stuck to the build surface and contaminate or interfere with the print. If this is printed on FDM printers, chances are the unsupported part will limp or has a poor surface quality.

SLA Photon S Elegoo Mars
Product Dimensions21.8 x 11.5 x 10.8 inches15.75 x 16.54 x 7.87 inches
Shipping Weight19.4 Pounds16.8 Pounds
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About Photon S and ELEGOO Mars

While in general printing with SLA machines is messier because they use liquid material and there are lots of precautions to pay attention to when dealing with the printing object, they are also well-known to make amazing models with smooth surfaces and great details. For those who are ready to put the effort, choosing an SLA printer is a great choice and nowadays they are getting more affordable as well depending on how much do you want to spend yet, they are also not as cheap as FDM gets recently.

If you want to get a machine that is not only affordable but also reliable, ANYCUBIC and ELEGOO are two great brands to shop from. We are sure you are familiar with these companies already because they are among the most popular as well and the reason why we like their products is because they are known to offer amazing quality machines that can create amazing models as well yet, they do carry many options to consider first before you jump into the hobby.

For those who don’t need a large build volume, Photon S and ELEGOO Mars are two ideal machines to consider and we are sure you will love them as well. These printers are the go-to of many beginners or even those who have spent some time with other 3D printers and the best thing is they can make amazing models without much fuss. The fact that they are very affordable also allow more people to get into the hobby without having to worry about spending a lot.

As the name suggests, the Photon S is an upgrade of the previous favorite model Photon printer and this machine is indeed a little bit different from the original model especially on the build quality and reliability as in a sense it already comes with an upgrade. On the other hand, Mars is a new machine especially on the entry-level and this is what took the hobbyist market by storm as it can create good quality print despite the low cost.

Photon S and ELEGOO Mars Design

Let’s start seeing the machine now and as you can distinguish from the sample picture above, the difference between Photon S and ELEGOO Mars is already prominent since the latter has a removable cover instead of built in housing like the one in Photon S but, if you have the older Photon, this new machine is actually lower the quality of its built by using plastic now instead of metal sheet. Yet, in terms of dimension, they are very compact and won’t occupy that much space in your working room.

One complaint we have with Mars is they decide to put the power and USB port at the back so we have to put a good space behind the machine as we will access this port often when plugging and unplugging the USB unlike the Photon S which is more thoughtful in our opinion by putting the power switch and USB port at the side of the machine. Unlike most FDM machines, your 3D printers usually come with a touch screen just like these two for best convenience.

Photon S and ELEGOO Mars Specification

Both Photon S and ELEGOO Mars are MSLA printers and for those who are not familiar yet with the differences, this is just another type of SLA technology. Unlike the common DLP SLA which uses a digital projector to flash a single image of each layer across the entire platform at once, your MSLA printers work using an LED array as the light source in combination with LCD photomask to shape the light image from the LED ray. This way the pixel size varies based on how the LCD photomask is manufactured.

In this side these machines are the same as they use a 2560 x 1440 or 2K HD masking LCD to provide high accuracy towards the XY axis with claimed resolution of 0.02mm and 0.14mm compared to 0.001mm and 0.04mm. As for the build volume both of them are also similar and capable of creating a single model at maximum 4.5 inches long, 2.5 inches wide, and 5.9 inches tall but your Photon S is capable of adding the height up to 6.4 inches tall.

Photon S and ELEGOO Mars Z Axis

What we think made up such a difference on their price range is not how they are specified but more into what Photon S is improved as now this model is using a dual linear for their Z-axis instead of one like on the original model and Elegoo Mars. This design is said to be more robust and stable to eliminate any wobble which may affect your print quality especially on the Z axis. However, for leveling they seem to be equally easy to perform and this is probably the most necessary to do after we get the machine.

Photon S and ELEGOO Mars Print Quality

Before doing any printing it is important to level your bed first because this is what decides the print quality and usually failures happen if you don’t level the bed or did it incorrectly. There are plenty of information and sources to guide even beginners for leveling that you can find for free on the internet. After leveling, we can start printing and for the result, they turn out to be amazing but side by side it is difficult to see the difference as well.

In our eyes they look identical for the same level of quality and details probably because they also use the same resolution but we did hope to see the difference between Z axis as well and while your Mars use single rail, it seems there is no problem on it handling print yet, do expect some trial and errors but we are not sure whether it is due to the machine itself or slicer.

SLA Photon S Vs ELEGOO Mars

These are good machines for the budget and they are also reliable including for the printing quality or ease of use if you are also used with 3D printing. The prominent difference besides their housing itself in which you may prefer one based on which seems more convenient, is actually the double rail system for Photon S Z axis in order to increase its stability and in our opinion, as an overall machine, this is a better design.

-【Great starter 3D Printer】: Super easy to setup since it comes almost entirely preassembled, come with all the proper tools to get started, and just a single grub screw to level instead of having to level each corner. Great introduction to 3D printing.
-【With the Dual Rails】: No worry about Z wobble issue; The dual Z axis rail make the bed very stable, this helps with the movement and to make sure the bed does not shift in the middle of printing; Better choice for large x-y objects with super-fine details.
-【Upgraded LED Array】: With the UV upgraded lighting, it makes the resolution and the accuracy in your printing that much better and tighter than any other 3d printer in its class. The pitting in the skin, the hair and the texture in the clothing all can shows up.
-【More Function】: ①Touch screen: offer a new-Level use experience ②Sanded Aluminum platform: greatly enhance adhesion make it more stable during printing ③Double air filtration system: effectively reduce the divergence of odor ④ CE Certified Power Supply
-【Fast Slicing Software】ELEGOO Mars comes with the latest version of CHITUBOX Slicing Software which gives you extraordinary user experience. CHITUBOX takes only 1 minute to slice 30Mb .stl model files while the open-sourced slicing software would take up to 10minutes.
-【Resin saving and Better Printing】CHITUBOX allows you to hollow out your model before slicing which could save your resin dramatically during photocuring process. Equiped with 40W UV lights and using ELEGOO resin, you can get a better printing result.
-【Smart and Convenient】3.5'' inch color touch screen equipped with the latest ELEGOO CHITUBOX 5.5 system makes it very easy for off-line printing. The build platform with steel ball balancing structure inside allows you to start printing within 5 minutes after assembly.
-【High Precision and Resolution】ELEGOO Mars uses a 2560x1440 2K HD masking LCD as to provide accurate printing with XY axis resolution of 0.00185inches / 0.047mm


We love both Photon S and ELEGOO Mars as they are able to print good models for the price point but if you just jump into the hobby and want to save some to see whether resin printing fits in your application, we do recommend to choose ELEGOO Mars.