3D printing softwareNews

Simplify3D releases version 5.0 of its software. Four years after the last update…

Simplify3D – the creator of the popular, paid software for preparing models for 3D printing for FDM / FFF technology, announced the premiere of version 5.0. The premiere took place … four years after the last update, which took place in November 2018, and three years after its first announcement. During this time, so many things have happened in the world that just listing them would take more space than a description of the new functionalities of Simplify3D 5.0. At the same time, the delay between successive versions was so long that many users wrote the company off and switched to other free programs (like CURA or PrusaSlicer) that provided more and more new functionalities. Now Simplify3D is back with a package of “120 highly requested features and improvements” and we will try to see if it was worth waiting four years for them…?

Simplify3D 5.0 analyzes prints layer by layer, making intelligent adjustments for the best results. The first significant change is the “addaptive height” function, which is to use the topology of the 3D model to dynamically adjust the thickness of the layer in order to achieve the best compromise between the quality of the part and the speed of its 3D printing. The method of generating seams has been improved – i.e. places where a given layer of the model ends and the next, higher one begins. Simplify3D claims the new engine reduces surface defects by carefully selecting the optimal start location for each toolpath to hide the starting points.

The “Dynamic Infill Density” feature is designed to automatically increase the percentage of infill near the top of the part, creating better surfaces while reducing material consumption. Several new infill patterns have been added to increase strength by changing the pattern on each layer. Finally, the thing that used to be the strongest point of Simplify3D, i.e. the module for manually building support structures. Instead of generating supports automatically relying solely on a mathematical algorithm, in version 5.0 we have access to a completely new mode of supports, where you can generate and customize them in a similar way as in the software for resin 3D printers. Simplify3D allows, for example, to use imported 3D models as supports and to select dedicated supports from a wide range of designs.

Version 5.0 is more efficient and faster than the previous version: twice as fast in loading geometry and displaying the print simulation, and three times faster in slicing it into layers. A new 3D Print Preview mode has been created that offers precise visualizations, accurate construction predictions and comprehensive metrics that provide valuable insight into the printing process:

  • Accurate Time Estimates – New algorithms provide highly accurate 3D printing time predictions
  • new coloring modes for layer height and workflow intensity
  • detailed statistics preview in the form of tabular data with accurate time and material consumption for each type of function, tool and process

For parts with precise sections or finishes, such as inscriptions, holes, pins or pins, you can mark them as special elements and give them dedicated 3D printing settings. In other words, you can print a large part in fast mode, and for selected elements use completely different, slow and precise modes of work.

This is just a list of the most interesting functionalities related to setting the parameters of 3D prints – in addition, Simplify3D 5.0 offers a whole lot of improvements and improvements in the field of work environment and parameterization of 3D printers (the manufacturer claims that the program is compatible with 90 new device models). For all this, you have to pay $199 (a discount is offered when upgrading from version 4.1, and if you purchased an older version in the last 12 months, the upgrade is free).

As a rule, the list of offered functionalities is good, but most of them can be found in the free PrusaSlicer … Certainly, the strongest point of the program is still the engine for building your own supports and the ability to assign other 3D printing parameters for selected elements of part geometry, but … everything will be useful primarily to companies providing 3D printing services or construction departments of companies creating a lot of complex prototypes. Home users – hobbyists and companies that produce a lot of relatively simple parts are unlikely to use Simplify3D resources – just as they are unaware of the many advanced features in CURA or PrusaSlicer.

I don’t know if after four years of silence and lack of communication from Simplify3D it will be possible to quickly rebuild the trust of users who want to return to it with quite good – and free! tools?

Source: www.simplify3d.com

Paweł Ślusarczyk
CEO of 3D Printing Center. Has over 15 years' experience in buisiness, gained in IT, advertising and polygraphy. Part of 3D printing industry since 2013.

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