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Anycubic Mega S Review

While this printer is a decent budget option, it somewhat failed to stand out from the rest of the pack
Anycubic Mega S
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Price:   $340 List | $212.49 at Amazon
Pros:  Inexpensive, decently capable
Cons:  Interface can be finicky, limited customer support in our experience
Manufacturer:   Anycubic
By David Wise and Austin Palmer  ⋅  Jun 24, 2021
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58
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#11 of 14
  • Print Quality - 40% 5
  • Ease of Use - 30% 6
  • Print Capabilities - 20% 7
  • Support - 10% 6

Our Verdict

We found the Anycubic Mega S to be a fairly run-of-the-mill filament-based 3D printer, but it is relatively budget-friendly. This printer gave about average results in our print quality metric and is decently easy to use. It has a solid set of capabilities but we did find the customer support for this printer to be almost nonexistent in our experience.

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Anycubic Mega S
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Anycubic Mega S
Awards  Best Buy Award Best Buy Award Editors' Choice Award  
Price $340 List
$212.49 at Amazon
$669 List
$626.00 at Amazon
$280 List
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$300 List
$299.99 at Amazon
$300 List
$249.99 at Amazon
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Pros Inexpensive, decently capableCompact form factor, excellent prints for FFF, easy to useGreat budget buy, solid printing capabilities, decent print qualityExceptionally detailed prints, solid capabilitiesDetailed prints, inexpensive
Cons Interface can be finicky, limited customer support in our experienceSupport could be better, a bit more assembly than other printersFinicky with ABS, can require a bit of tinkeringPrints require cleanup, much messierDifficult to use, limited customer support
Bottom Line While this printer is a decent budget option, it somewhat failed to stand out from the rest of the packIf you're seeking a great value option, it's hard to beat this user-friendly machineIf you are looking for an inexpensive bare-bones printer and don't mind making some adjustments to it, then this model is an exceptional choiceIf you value detail above all else and are looking for a printer for high-quality miniature models, then this is our all-around favoriteIf you are shopping for a resin printer on a slimmer budget, this can be a great option
Rating Categories Anycubic Mega S Creality 3D CR-10S... Creality 3D Ender 3... Elegoo Mars 2 Pro Anycubic Photon Mono
Print Quality (40%)
5.0
7.0
6.0
10.0
10.0
Ease Of Use (30%)
6.0
7.0
6.0
2.0
2.0
Print Capabilities (20%)
7.0
8.0
7.0
5.0
5.0
Support (10%)
6.0
5.0
6.0
5.0
4.0
Specs Anycubic Mega S Creality 3D CR-10S... Creality 3D Ender 3... Elegoo Mars 2 Pro Anycubic Photon Mono
Build Volume (XxYxZ) 210x210x205mm 300x300x400mm 200x200x250mm 130x80x160mm 130x80x165mm
Maximum Extruder Temperature 260°C 260°C 255°C N/A N/A
Layer Cooling Fan? 1 1 2 N/A N/A
Heated Bed Yes Yes Yes N/A N/A
Build Plate Material Tempered Glass with mesh covering (Ultrabase) Aluminium build plate with an adhesive printing sheet Aluminium build plate with a magnetic course plastic sticker Aluminum Aluminum
Maximum Bed Temperature 120°C 110°C 110°C N/A N/A
Compatible with Third-Party Materials? Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Included Nozzle sizes 0.4mm 0.4mm 0.4mm Not applicable Not applicable
Print layer resolution 0.05 - 0.4mm 0.1 - 0.4mm 0.1 - 0.4mm 0.025 - 0.1mm 0.025 - 0.1mm
Filament Size 1.75mm 1.75mm 1.75mm 405 nm resin 405 nm resin
PLA? Yes Yes Yes N/A N/A
ABS? Yes Yes Yes N/A N/A
Network Printing No No No No No
Standalone (SD card or USB drive) Printing Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes

Our Analysis and Test Results

One nice feature about this printer is how compact it is, with the power supply and control box integrated underneath the moving bed. Many other budget printers have the power and control as a separate unit, taking up considerably more of your precious workbench real estate than the Mega S.

Performance Comparison



We found the Mega S struggled to stand out from the rest of the pack.
We found the Mega S struggled to stand out from the rest of the pack.
Credit: Jason Peters

Print Quality


We began our 3D printer assessment process by making a series of test prints in both ABS and PLA plastic for each of the models that use FFF technology. Our suite of test prints lets us compare printing quality between products side-by-side, with scores aggregated from a panel of judges. The Mega S delivered typical results on the whole, earning it an average score in the middle of the group.


We began our print quality metric with a very common 3D printer calibration/torture test, the 3D benchy. This little tugboat is a great all-around benchmarking test, with a variety of different geometries all designed to tax filament printers. The Mega S did decently well, delivering average prints in both PLA and ABS. There was only a small amount of dropping on overhangs and the text on the bottom of the PLA version was legible but the hull had a rough finish with some weird indentations. The text on the ABS version was also essentially unreadable.

The bridging test.
The bridging test.
Credit: Jason Peters

Next, we looked at how each printer handled bridges (unsupported features) and small details, with our bridging and Eiffel Tower tests. The Mega S gave far from a good performance with these two prints, with both ABS versions failing completely. The PLA version of the Eiffel Tower did finish printing but it looked horrible in our opinion, definitely stretching a bit to call it a successful print. The PLA bridging test, with some noticeable sagging on the longer bridges and an overall lackluster print quality.

Next, we scored the quality of a print-in-place articulated poseable elephant, an overhanging geometry test, and a dimensional accuracy test. The performance of the Mega S did improve a bit with these three prints, delivering average or above results with the elephant and the overhangs. The PLA and ABS elephants both articulated freely, but the print quality is overall a bit rough, with plenty of deformities and defects. It was a similar story with the overhangs, with all but the steepest overhangs actually printing well but the overall quality just seemed to be lacking compared to the top-tier printers.

The overhang test.
The overhang test.
Credit: Jason Peters

The dimensional accuracy score is based on a nickel test, where a nickel should fit perfectly in the cavity of the print when completed. Unfortunately, both of the openings were a little on the larger side, with plenty of gaps around the coin.

The Anycubic Mega S struggled with the next model, another single-piece articulated model. This printer failed with both the PLA and ABS platform jacks. The ABS wouldn't print successfully and the PLA version repeatedly broke whenever we tried to actuate it. Performance did rebound a bit with the wireframe cube, with this printer only having minimal sagging and a few strings on both PLA and ABS prints.

The low-poly figures.
The low-poly figures.
Credit: Jason Peters

This printer did continue to do well with the pair of low-poly figures, with fairly clean surfaces and smooth overhangs, though the ABS version of the smaller model did have a rough surface finish. It also did well with the single-shell spiral vase in both types of plastic, though again had the less than amazing surface finish.

The support test also came out well, though we did have to resort to pliers and other tools to remove the sacrificial structure. However, the underside of the supported area actually came out quite well.

Finally, we come to our last three test prints: a tall tower, threaded jar, and matching lid. The tall tower showed minimal signs of any Z-axis wobble and the threaded jar and lid came out with an acceptable finish, though the ABS versions were a bit worse than their PLA counterparts.

This printer is about average when it comes to capabilities.
This printer is about average when it comes to capabilities.
Credit: Jason Peters

Ease of Use


Our next metric rated and scored how convenient and easy to use the Anycubic Mega S is. We awarded points based on things like the ease of swapping filament or leveling the bed, with this model of printer earning an overall score just above average.


We found it to be decently easy to change the filament in this printer with its semi-automatic process, though the loading and unloading part can be a bit time consuming with the slow feed rate.

It's the usual difficulty to level the bed on this printer, with 4 independent adjustment screws in each corner of the build plate — no automatic build leveling here!

This printer does come mostly assembled, with just a few cables to plug in and other components to attach. You can send files to this printer via USB or SD card and there is a display on this printer that shows the percent completed and the time elapsed while the printer is going.

The threaded jars came out alright.
The threaded jars came out alright.
Credit: Jason Peters

Print Capabilities


For our capabilities metric, we looked at the material compatibility, build envelope, and the build plate of each printer, along with a few other things. The Mega S did quite well, earning a score significantly above average.


This printer has a maximum hotend temperature of 260°C and a peak heated bed temperature of 120°C, giving it a decently wide range of compatible printing materials. It isn't constrained to proprietary products, so any 1.75mm filament that will work with those temperatures is fine to use with the Mega S.

It has a slightly smaller than average build volume of 210mm x 210mm x 205mm and a build plate that provides plenty of adhesions. We used the free Cura slicing program for our tests but you have the option of using a variety of other software suites if you want, both of the free and paid variety.

We weren't too impressed with the customer support from Anycubic.
We weren't too impressed with the customer support from Anycubic.
Credit: Jason Peters

Support


Our last metric looked at the customer support for each of these printers, by comparing the timeliness and quality of responses that we received from each manufacturer and the quality of any supplied documentation on the website. Regrettably, Anycubic hasn't delivered the best results in this regard in our opinion, earning the Mega S a subpar score.


There are only a few troubleshooting videos on the website and we only found a contact form that didn't yield the best results for us when it came to technical questions.

Value


All in all, the Mega S is a decent value, delivering good quality prints at a fairly affordable price if you don't mind dealing with any troubleshooting issues yourself.

Conclusion


While Mega S is definitely far from our favorite or the best printer we have seen, it is a decent machine with one of the lower price tags of the group. It might be a great starter printer for someone looking for a project and who doesn't mind dealing with any troubleshooting issues on their own. However, it probably isn't the best printer for someone who doesn't want to spend time tuning or tweaking their machine to maximize performance.

David Wise and Austin Palmer