Although Elegoo isn't the only resin 3D printer manufacturer on the market, it's certainly one of the most popular. Consistently, Elegoo offers low-cost 3D printers that, despite affordable price tags, boast incredible print quality. When I first tested out the Elegoo Mars, I was extremely impressed. And its Elegoo Mars Pro added a slew of improvements for an even better printing experience. Now, Elegoo provides its Elegoo Mars 2 Pro. But should you buy it? Learn all about the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro resin 3D printer in our review!
What is the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro?
At a first glance, the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro remains largely unchanged from its predecessor, the vanilla Mars Pro. But the Mars 2 Pro sports a few key differences. Its 2K LCD screen features a slightly lower resolution than the Mars Pro, with a 1620 x 2560 panel. Although higher than the resolution of the Mars Pro LCD curing screen, it's spread across a bigger build area so that its pixel density is slightly reduced. The XY resolution is 50 microns, compared to 47 microns on the Mars Pro. That small of a difference shouldn't be visible, but it's still worth noting.
Aside from resolution and pixel density, the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro touts a monochrome LCD for masking. Because more intense UV light passes through, the process of solidifying resin is faster and you'll experience quicker layer curing times in as low as one or two seconds. With a 129 x 80 x 160 mm build volume, you can generate some decently sized prints. It's on par with the previous-generation Elegoo Mars Pro and Elegoo Mars, but bigger than the Anycubic Photon S or Phrozen Sonic Mini 4K.
Elegoo Mars 2 Pro Review Verdict
The Elegoo Mars 2 Pro doesn't depart from the overall design of its predecessor. It still rocks an acrylic hood, conveniently-located USB port on the front, single linear rail, and integrated carbon filter. A rubber gasket fits over the bottom of the acrylic hood for a tight seal that helps keep odors in. Most changes are internal though. The higher resolution screen makes for a lower pixel density since it's stretched across a larger build area. But printing speeds are faster with the monochrome LCD screen.
Print quality is outstanding. This should come as no surprise. Generally, resin 3D printers deliver better print quality than filament printers, and the Mars 2 Pro comes through. What's more prints generate quickly. The test print of two rooks took just over 2 hours to print. That's an impressive time, and about two times faster than the Mars Pro. Built quality is great with several touches that improve everyday use. The carbon filter successfully reduces an aroma, though it's still best to print in a well-ventilated room. A front-facing USB port means no fumbling around for the flash drive on the back of the unit. Disappointingly, the LCD screen is not user-replaceable. Moreover, the tempered glass protector as found on the Mars Pro and original Mars is absent. It's easier to scratch so you'll need to be extra careful. That, and the lower pixel resolution, are the only downsides to an otherwise superb printer.
- Cheap as chips
- Excellent print quality
- Fast printing speeds - about twice as fast as the previous-generation Elegoo Mars Pro
- Monochrome LCD
- Great build quality - front-facing USB port, carbon filter for odor reduction, quiet linear rail
- Comes with extra FEP sheets
- Not a 4K screen
- Higher resolution than the Mars Pro but lower pixel density because of the bigger build area
- No protective glass around the LCD screen, more susceptible to scratches
- Non-user replaceable LCD screen
Elegoo Mars 2 Pro Specs and Features
- System: EL3D-3.0.2
- Languages: Chinese English Japanese Dutch Korean French German Russian Italian Spanish Turkish Portuguese
- Operation: 3.5 Inch Touch Screen
- Slicer Software: CHITUBOX
- Connectivity: USB
- Technology: LED Display Photocuring
- Light Source: UV Integrated Light (wavelength 405nm)
- XY Resolution: 0.05mm(1620*2560)
- Z-Axis Accuracy: 0.00125mm
- Layer Thickness: 0.01-0.2mm
- Printing Speed: 30-50mm/h
- Power Requirements: 100-240V 50/60Hz
- Printer Dimensions: 7.87in (L)*7.87in (W)*16.14in (H) / 20cm (L)*20cm (W)*41cm (H)
- Build Volume: 5.08in(L)*3.15in(W)*6.30in(H) / 129mm(L)*80mm(W)*160mm(H)
- Weight: 13.67lbs(6.2kg)
Test Prints on the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro
Regardless of specs, the real test of a 3D printer is quality of prints produced. I began by printing the test files on the Mars 2 Pro. Like past releases, Elegoo includes two rooks as its test flies. For all of my test prints, I used Elegoo water-washable resin.
The rook test prints cane out flawlessly. Adhesion to the build plate was quite strong. But the prints popped off with a gentle tap of the included metal spatula. Next up, I tried slicing files on my own.
Renowned 3D modeling artist Cobramode offers some sweet 3D printable minis. I printed out Cobramode's Sadiq Mortuary Guild Conciliator. With supports, the mini printed flawlessly. I was incredibly pleased with the quality of prints as well as speed. It's a good balance. The rook took a bit less than two and a half hours, about twice as fast as the original Mars and Mars Pro. Cobramode's Sadiq Mortuary Guild Conciliator took around three and a half hours. Although larger prints take less time on my filament printers such as my Anet ET5 Pro, the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro trounces FDM printers when it comes to quality.
And finally, I printed the ultra-popular Star Wars Deathtrooper. It's become something of an unofficial test file for resin printers, and the Elegoo Mars in particular. The Deathtrooper printed flawlessly. Taking about five or so hours, the Deathtrooper emerged from the resin tank with exquisite detail. Once again, I was pleased with its balance of speed and print quality. Despite the slightly lower XY resolution when compared with the Elegoo Mars Pro, I didn't notice any real-world quality impacts when using the Mars 2 Pro.
Software - ChiTuBox Slicer
Like its other resin printers in the Mars, Mars Pro, and Saturn, the Mars 2 Pro uses ChiTuBox as its slicer. If you've used any 3D printing software, it should be simple enough to grasp. There's a slight learning curve that comes with the resin territory. You'll often have to scale prints down, add supports, and hollow out your prints. Although that's not unique to the Mars 2 Pro since it's universal for resin printers across the board, it's still worth noting. Nevertheless, ChiTuBox is easy enough to use. On my sliced 3D prints, it took only a few minutes to rotate 3D models, add supports, and hit slice.
Final Thoughts - Should You Buy the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro?
Once again, Elegoo has wowed me with its attention affordable, high-quality 3D printers. The Elegoo Mars 2 Pro makes several worthwhile improvements over the first-generation Mars Pro. Its monochrome screen allows for quicker printing time, much faster in fact than you'll find with other resin-based 3D printers. Though screen resolution gets an upgrade on the Mars 2 Pro, pixel density takes a minor hit with a 3 micron downgrade. Though some makers may shudder, I'm more than happy with print quality and particularly with the drastically increased printing speed. My only concern is that the LCD screen isn't protected by tempered glass and isn't user-replaceable. If it gets scratched or damaged, you can't repair the Mars 2 Pro yourself. Compare that to the Elegoo Mars and Mars Pro which both boast replaceable screens.
The real question is: should you buy the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro? If you want a great printer that balances speed and quality, the Mars 2 Pro is a solid choice. For newcomers that don't already have a resin printer, the Mars 2 Pro is a good buy. Most of the compromises are pretty negligible, though the screen which lacks protection and can't be replaced is a potential concern. Granted, the monochrome LCD should prove long-lasting and you should probably be cautious around your LCD screen regardless of whether or not it can be swapped out.
But what about the existing owners of a Mars, Mars Pro, or another resin printer? When compared to the non-Pro Mars, the Pro and Pro 2 are absolutely worth the upgrade. Pro owners are probably fine with the Pro and don't need to switch. But if you're looking for another unit, the Mars 2 Pro is a stupendous choice. However, there's a demographic that should consider swapping printers: professional and semi-pro printers. If you sell minis or 3D printed objects and need to set up a print farm, the increased speed of the Mars 2 Pro makes it absolutely worth the upgrade. Ultimately, I'll likely designate the Mars 2 Pro my go-to for resin 3D printing with the Saturn for larger prints and the Anet ET5 Pro for filament printing. With several improvements to printing speed and quality, the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro is one of the best 3D printers on the market.
Who should buy the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro:
- Someone without a resin printer already
- Original Mars non-Pro owners looking to upgrade
- Anyone that demands speed (i.e. if you're selling minis on Etsy, want to set up a print farm, etc.))
Who should skip the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro:
- Existing Elegoo Mars Pro owners
- Current resin 3D printer owners that are satisfied with their printers