Resin 3D printing can make some super detailed 3D prints. But what if I told you it would get even better?
You see, most of the high-quality prints you might have seen on Reddit or Instagram were printed on 4K resin printers. But, in the past year, a few companies have released 8K resin 3D printers, which yield basically double the level of detail in prints.
My favorite 8K 3D printer is the Phrozen Sonic Mini 8K, as it’s not super expensive and has an epic 8K monochrome LCD screen. Additionally, the 3D printer has a sturdy frame and smooth motion system. The Elegoo Saturn 2 8K boasts similar specs but with an even larger build space.
Want to hear more about 8K resin 3D printers?
Just keep reading!
Table of Contents
- Best 8K 3D Printers At A Glance
- What is an 8K Resin 3D Printer?
- Benefits of 8K Resin Printing
- Considerations for 8K Resin Printers
- What Resins Can You Use?
Best 8K 3D Printers At A Glance
3D Printer Type: LCD | Materials: 405 nm Resin | Build Volume: 165 x 72 x 180 mm
Phrozen is a leading manufacturer of high-end consumer resin 3D printers, and the Sonic Mini 8K is one of their latest (and greatest) products. And it’s easily the best choice for a resin printer if you’re looking to print at 8K pixel resolution.
Moreover, as indicated by its name, the Sonic Mini 8K boasts 8K resin printing capabilities. This means detail… lots of it for prints.
According to the manufacturer, the Sonic Mini 8K has a printing resolution of just 22 microns. That means that prints can have features as small as 0.022 mm. For reference, a typical FDM 3D printer has a resolution of 100 microns, so the Sonic Mini 8K is literally almost five times more precise than a normal printer.
Additionally, because it’s a resin printer, you won’t see layer lines at all on your prints!
But besides its printing accuracy, the Sonic Mini 8K has some other great features, like its super-sturdy frame design. Moreover, the printer has two linear rails for stable movement of the build plate during prints, and the VAT has two thumbscrews for securing it down to the frame.
Sadly, though, as you could probably guess by the “Mini” in the name, you don’t have a lot of space to work with this printer. In fact, you only get 165 x 72 x 180 cm of print space. But while this means you can’t print large projects, it’s not a problem if you’re printing miniatures (e.g. D&D figurines) or jewelry.
So, if you want to get an 8K 3D printer, whether to try out this high-resolution printing technology or to print professional-grade 3D prints, I highly recommend the Sonic Mini 8K!
3D Printer Type: MSLA | Materials: Resin | Build Volume: 219 x 123 x 250 mm
Elegoo is another popular 3D printer manufacturer, and while their Mars series of printers is their most popular lineup, the Saturn 2 is easily their best printer when it comes to the quality of prints.
That’s because the Elegoo Saturn 2 has an 8K LCD screen, which no other Elegoo 3D printer has. Say hello to high-detail prints, my friend!
As for printing precision and accuracy, Elegoo states that the Saturn 2 has a Z-axis accuracy of 0.00125 mm (super low) and an X/Y printing resolution of 28.5 microns. While 28.5 microns is super precise, it’s not as good as the 22 microns offered by the Sonic Mini.
But don’t worry because, what the Saturn 2 lacks in printing accuracy, it makes up for in print space. Moreover, you get a full 218 x 123 x 250 mm of usable print space, which should be more than enough for most resin prints and even a handful of miniatures at once.
And, like the Sonic Mini 8K, the Elegoo Saturn 2 has two linear rails for stable and smooth printing.
Additionally, Elegoo made sure that anyone could use the printer, by including a full-color touchscreen display with a simple and easy-to-use interface. Even a 5-year-old could start a print on this machine!
The only thing that doesn’t make sense to me when it comes to using the printer is that Elegoo placed the USB port on the backside of the printer, which makes no sense. But whatever!
Overall, if you’re looking for a good value 8K resin printer, I can’t think of a better option than the Elegoo Saturn 2. At a sub-$600 price point, the Saturn 2 is a great bang for your buck, with a high-quality print performance, a decently-large build volume, and an easy-to-use interface!
3D Printer Type: LCD | Materials: Compatible with Phrozen and 3rd Party Resins of 405 nm | Build Volume: 330 x 185 x 400 mm
The alternative to Phrozen’s Sonic Mini 8K is its older brother, the Sonic Mega 8K. As you probably figured out, this printer is another 8K resin printer, but with a much larger build volume than the Sonic Mini 8K.
Furthermore, the Mega 8K offers you a whopping 330 x 185 x 400 mm of print volume. With this much space, you’ll be able to print basically anything you want, whether it’s army of miniatures at once or a large trophy, or even a massive sculpture!
Read our article on the largest resin 3D printers if you need the extra space.
Sadly, though, detail was sacrificed for this extra print space. While the Sonic Mini had an X/Y print resolution of just 22 microns, the Mega 8K has one of 48 microns. This still is superb for a resin printer, but it’s not exceptional for an 8K printer.
But don’t worry because Phrozen packs in many other features for this printer to make up for it. In fact, my favorite part about the Mega 8K isn’t even its print space but actually the frame design.
Moreover, the Mega 8K doesn’t have an inconvenient and silly trapezoid shape but instead a normal rectangular shape. There are also hinged doors on the printer for opening up the print space to access the VAT and four decently big rubber feet to reduce vibrations on the machine. And, of course, there are two linear rails to provide maximum stability and smoothness for the printing process.
I also can’t forget to mention the super high 70 mm/hour maximum print speed on this machine which comes in handy when printing large models. This is extremely fast when compared to normal resin printers, like the Elegoo Mars 3, which have a max print speed of just 30-50 mm/hour.
So, if you want to splurge a little on an 8K 3D printer, do it right by getting the Phrozen Mega 8K. It’s big enough to handle any printing idea you throw at it, and it’s also super fast!
3D Printer Type: SLA | Materials: Resin | Build Volume: 218 x 123 x 240 mm
Next, we have the Linant 3D Base PRO. This printer isn’t a very popular machine compared to the others on the list, but it’s one of the few 8K resin 3D printers on the market today, so it’s worth going over!
The first thing you’ll notice about the Litant 3D Base PRO is its unique frame design. Instead of using two linear rails side-by-side, as most other resin printers do, the Linant PRO separates them on two sides, each with its own Z-axis lead screw and stepper motor.
This system provides better motion for the print surface as long as the lead screws and Z-axis motors stay in sync. Hint: they do!As a result of the better frame design and the high-quality monochrome LCD screen, the Linant 3D Base PRO has an XY resolution of 28.5 microns. This isn’t the lowest we’ve seen, but it’s certainly pretty close, making it a great option if you care a lot about dimensional accuracy for prints.
The 3D Base PRO also has a decently large maximum print volume of 218 x 123 x 240 mm, which is enough to handle a few miniature 3D models at once.
Finally, I have to point out the printing speed on the 3D Base PRO which goes up to 60 mm/hour. While this isn’t extremely fast, for an 8K printer at a sub-$1,000 price point, it’s fantastic!
3D Printer Type: MSLA | Materials: 405 nm UV Resin | Build Volume: 298 x 164 x 300 mm
Lastly, we have the Anycubuc Photon M3 Max. This printer isn’t actually an 8K resin printer but a 7K one, meaning its LCD screen has a pixel resolution in the 7K range. But don’t worry because there isn’t much of a noticeable difference between prints made on an 8K printer versus prints made on a 7K printer.
The Anycubic Photon M3 Max has an insanely large print space of 300 x 298 x 164 mm, which is more than many FDM printers like the Creality Ender 3. With this large a print volume, you’ll be able to print tons of miniatures in one print job or large models like a mini PC case or a lamp shade.
The printer is also incredibly sturdy, with two linear rails and a build plate holder that’s well-designed to ensure no wobble. I also want to point out the very easy-to-use interface onboard the M3 Max, which makes it super easy to start prints, clean the VAT, and perform other relevant actions on your machine.
Unfortunately, though, this printer isn’t super amazing when it comes to print resolution. The XY resolution isn’t too bad, coming in at 46 microns, similar to the Phrozen Sonic Mega 8K.
But the Z-axis resolution is 10 microns, which is almost eight times higher (worse) than the Z-axis resolution on the Elegoo Saturn 2. As such, you won’t be able to print with as small of layer heights as you would on other 8K printers.
Regardless, though, the Anycubic Photon M3 Max is a terrific 3D printer. Even if it’s not actually 8K, it’s got a huge print volume and a sturdy design. And, as it’s an Anycubic printer, you can also use the other products from Anycubic’s large ecosystem, such as their wash stations, cure stations, resins, and more!
What is an 8K Resin 3D Printer?
An 8K printer is a resin 3D printer that has an LCD screen with an 8K resolution.
And, so you’re not confused, it’s important to note that the “LCD screen” on a resin printer isn’t like the LCD screen you’d see on a tablet or on an FDM printer. Instead, the LCDs that resin printers use are very high-quality, monochrome screens that project light on the liquid resin to solidify areas of it to form your desired 3D print.
An 8K screen means that the LCD can project light with a resolution of 7680 x 4320 pixels. This is extremely high detail, which is why 8K printers (and even 4K printers, too) are commonly used to print miniatures (e.g. War Hammer figurines) and other models that have a ton of small detail.
But, besides the quality of their LCD screen, 8K resin printers are just like any other resin printer, with a VAT, Z-axis arm, and more!
Benefits of 8K Resin Printing
The main benefit of 8K resin printing is the quality of your prints. Prints made with an 8K resin printer will have more detail than you’ve probably ever seen on a 3D print.
It’s absolutely insane!
Just look at the pic below of an 8K resin print next to a 1-cent Euro coin:
Now tell me that’s not crazy!
Besides the overall level of detail on prints that 8K resin machines can handle increases, there aren’t really any other direct benefits of using an 8K printer. However, if a machine has an 8K resin LCD, then it likely will also have a better build quality with a higher level of movement precision. Additionally, most 8K resin printers have a better VAT that’s easier to work with (remove prints from).
Considerations for 8K Resin Printers
When picking out an 8K resin 3D printer, there are a few things to keep in mind to ensure you’re getting the right printer for your needs. Below, I’ve gone over some important considerations:
The most important consideration for an 8K resin printer is the print quality. For resin printers, this is usually controlled by the quality and resolution of the screen (LCD screen).
As indicated by their name, an 8K 3D printer should have an 8K screen, meaning the layers will be made with an 8K resolution (very high quality). Just make sure whatever printer you’re buying actually has an 8K screen.
Also, make sure to check the reviews for the printer. Because even if the manufacturer says a printer has an 8K LCD screen, it might not, or some other factors that the seller isn’t telling you about might hurt the quality of prints. So make sure to read a few reviews to check that the print quality of the machine is good.
The reliability of a resin 3D printer is also super important because what’s the point of a high-end machine if it can only run 10% of the time?
While there’s no single metric that determines the reliability of an 8K resin 3D printer, the reviews often serve as a good indicator. Read a few of them to ensure that the machine you’re purchasing doesn’t break down all the time.
Next, the features of an 8K resin printer are another thing you should consider. Features can be anything from a well-built user interface to a patented technology for the LCD that improves the quality of prints.
Different 3D printers have different features, and some might matter to you more than others. For example, I care a lot more about if a printer has a large build volume than I care if the user interface is easy to use.
My review of each printer offers a good overview of the features of each printer!
Lastly, it’s important to look at the value of the 8K 3D printer you’re planning on buying. I like to think of value as the features per dollar or cost.
While some 3D printers might offer better features, don’t pay just any amount to get this printer over another that has almost all the same features. Try to get a good value for your money.
If you’re looking for an 8K resin 3D printer, the Elegoo Saturn 2 is perhaps the best bang for your buck, so give it a look!
What Resins Can You Use?
You can technically use any 405-nm resin on an 8K 3D printer. But you’ll want a resin optimized for being printed with an 8K resolution to get the most detail in prints. I’ve listed a few of my favorite 8K 3D printing resins in the bullet points below:
8K 3D printing will likely be the future of resin printers, but, as of right now, the options for these types of high-resolution printers are limited.
But if you want an 8K printer, whether to test out the technology or print insanely high-detail models, I’d highly recommend getting the Phrozen Sonic Mini 8K. It’s a solid 3D printer with out-of-this-world printing resolutions that will make all of your prints come out super precise and accurate.
And, if you want a lower-cost option, then definitely check out the Elegoo Saturn 2 8K. It’s by far the least expensive 8K resin printer on the market, and it’s packed with great features like dual linear rails and an easy-to-use interface.
Lastly, if you have a lot of big ideas and want to print them out in detail, check out the Sonic Mega 8K. Its 8K LCD screen provides a lot of detail for prints, but it’s also got an insanely large print volume!