AIO Zeus next to a MakerBot Thing-O-Matic
Tools for the DIY enthusiast have evolved quite a lot over the past century, from simple hand tools and rudimentary electrical machinery, to the sophisticated 3D printers
available today. If we look back just a few years, the MakerBot
Thing-O-Matic was quite revolutionary, though still quite hard to use. MakerBot
has since released many new (and improved) 3D printers, but other companies have been popping up and releasing their own 3D printers with additional features and improvements.
|RobotShop has seen and carried a lot of different hobby 3D printers over the years, ranging in price from as low as ~$300 to as much as $10,000 (or more). When it comes to a 3D printer in the $2500 range, few have as much to offer as the new AIO Robotics Zeus 3D printer. Inside, the quality looks very similar to what you would find inside a normal HP laser jet (paper) printer. It uses a durable bent metal frame, built to tight tolerances. This product is made to last, and more importantly to keep its shape and retain build quality, unlike other printers which might bend or distort and need constant readjustment.
|Zeus 3D Printer |
|Build Table |
|Head & Table |
|An important feature of the Zeus system is its integrated 3D scanner. Here you can see the actual laser used for 3D scanning. Control over the scanner is done using the touch screen interface, and there are various settings which control the resolution and output of the scan. Calibration of the device is done via the touch screen as well, and with a supplied template that goes on the build plate.
|LED & Laser |
|Laser Scanner |
|Laser & Head |
|The printing head is very nicely built and designed. There is a spring loaded mechanism to remove it for cleaning or replacement (which took us around five seconds to do). One nice added touch is the accessibility to the extruder mechanism; it is not hidden at all, which will certainly helps for accessibility. Note the quick release on the filament drive which makes loading / unloading the filament much easier too.
|Print Head |
|Head Removed |
|Head Closeup |
|In regards to filament and spools, there is no "weird" or proprietary spool needed for this machine. This means the user will have a greater number of choices when it come time to ordering new material. In the pictures below we tested a 1Kg RobotShop brand spool and it does indeed fit perfectly. The manufacturer supplies a set of optional centering rings which are 3D printed for their specific spool, but a custom part can be made to match any spool if needed.
|Door Closed |
|Door Open |
|RobotShop Spool |
A very attractive and relatively new feature which AIO Robotics brought to the market with the Zeus printer is the ability to copy a part without any additional hardware needed or even the need to connect it to a compute. Since the scanner is integrated into the machine, you can just put your original part inside the printer, scan it, and print it. If you need to change it slightly (scaling the part for example), you can do it via the printer's touch screen interface. An auto level calibration is also included so you don't have to mess with screws or other methods to get your table level.
AIO Robotics does have some very interesting videos on their YouTube channel
, including how to use the printer via the simple touch screen interface.
The AIO Robotics Zeus All in One 3D Printer
is available at RobotShop.
- Print Technology: Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF)
- Build Volume: 8.0'' x 6.0'' x 5.7''
- Print Layer Resolution: 80μm
- Print File Type: .STL | .AIO
- Supported Printing Material: PLA
- Scan Technology: Swiping Laser Triangulation
- Scan Volume: 9.0 (Diameter) x 5.0 (H) [Inch]
- Scan Resolution: 125μm
- Onboard Storage: 8GB eMMC | 16 GB Micro-SD Slot
- Turntable Payload: 4.4 lbs
- Camera: 2-MP Full-HD Cmos Camera
- Touchscreen: 7" Multi-Touch Color Screen
- Computer: Exynos 4412, Quad Core 1.7 GHz
- Connectivity: Thumb Drive, USB, Ethernet, Wi-Fi