Jump to content
Ultimaker Community of 3D Printing Experts
Sign in to follow this  
jet

Netfabb-Ultimaker vs Netfabb Basic vs Skeinforge

Recommended Posts

Im new to the forum, my ultimaker just left the Netherlands headed for Australia yesterday, WOO!

So Im finally having a bit of a look at the software side of things, and i was just curious about the difference between the different slicing packages. As I understand it, skienforge and Netfabb-Ultimaker do pretty much exactly the same thing, except Netfabb computes the g-code much faster.

That leaves me wondering why nobody is using the free version of netfabb, netfabb-basic, which as far as i can tell is the same as netfabb-ultimaker, without machine specific profiles?

is there any reason I couldnt just copy the free skeinforge profiles into netfabb basic?

Also any input as too the best software to start out with would be good, am i wasting my time trying to work around paying the $200 for netfabb-ultimaker, or should i just pay for it and avoid a heap of hastles. I assume the user support is much better with netfabb-ultimaker

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've had my machine for just under a month. No one with more experience has answered you, so I will. I paid the extra for Netfabb, and have used it. It does slice very fast. AFIK, it does not have 'comb' feature (see below). Currently it does not allow connecting directly to my machine to print - supposed to, but does not work. This is a well known problem. I haven't seen any discussion about printing from NF except that it doesn't work. You have to use another program to upload the gcode to your machine. The NF user interface is more complicated compared to the Skeinpypy & Printrun routines. The high complexity of set-up options (in NF) may offer more function - if you really understand what they all do. The NF learning curve is a bit higher (still a nube on everything here really). The few prints I have made with NF & printrun had really good quality, but have alot of stringing. There is a feature called 'comb' in Skeinforge (part of Skeinpypy) that forces the gcode to make non-printing moves over printed areas - not over voids. This makes the prints come out alot cleaner with much less clean-up time. There is supposed to be a new version of Netfabb released soon. I would think these issues will be addressed.

Knowing what I do now, I would hold off on NF and see what they come up with for their next version. I would learn how to use my machine with open source tools (arguable as good) while shaking it out mechanically. Things are evolving at a quick rate. I could not have known the current state of affairs when I bought my machine & NF at the end of Dec. The price of NF is the same if your buy it with your machine or separately so what is there to lose?

Matt

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The NF user interface is more complicated compared to the Skeinpypy & Printrun routines. The high complexity of set-up options (in NF) may offer more function - if you really understand what they all do.
You mean NF has more then 260 options found in Skeinforge? :D

Well, I must humbly defer. I will try to clarify with some opinion. Skeinpypy is more straightforward and easier to understand compared to Netfabb. Skeinforge in its native format has more options than Netfabb. The user controls are of Netfabb are comprehensive but more organized than the maze within in Skeinforge. The controls in NF are not as tedious as those in SF, especially because some kind people have gone to lengths to make some standard profiles for us. My preference is with Skeinpypy for now.

I hope to have done justice to the facts. I invite corrections. Now before I put another foot in my mouth...

Matt

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Matt, then I suggest you send all your money to the creator of SkeinPyPy :mrgreen: !

I've put quite a bit of effort in trying to minimize the amount of options in SkeinPyPy beta2. I couldn't have done it without input of quite a few people. It never is/was my idea to replace NetFabb. But my question was sort of genuine, I don't have NetFabb, so I don't know which options it has and how many it has, and how they are organized.

For SkeinPyPy I picked a lot of defaults. For example: why would you want to turn off comb? Never really. Same for other options, some you just never want to turn on. Some you never want to change, and some just need to contain the same value as another setting. Then there are a bunch "set and forget" settings. But the final philosophy is quite simple, the more often you want to change the option, the more accessible it is. So the most commonly changed options are on the first tab, on the left. A bit less common, to the right. Not changed very often, 2nd tab. Hardly ever accessed, in the advanced config.

The next version will add no extra settings in the first two tabs. But it will come with a bunch of extra features, most unrelated to the slicing directly but related to easier machine operation and better model control.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
As I understand it, skienforge and Netfabb-Ultimaker do pretty much exactly the same thing, except Netfabb computes the g-code much faster.

Yes but not really..

They're the same in that they're both slicers but the underlying way they do things is really different.. SF is more setup to be able to drop in new modules that do interesting things (like, recently, Skin) but it's a more raw interface - you've got access to a bazillion knobs and dials and levers. NF is a more polished interface but it's not really suited (near as I can tell) to dropping new bits into it. Sort of like *nix vs Windows, almost..

 

That leaves me wondering why nobody is using the free version of netfabb

I don't think you can slice with that version. Or if you can slice, you can't save the gcode or print from it. So.. People don't use it because it won't work.

 

Also any input as too the best software to start out with would be good, am i wasting my time trying to work around paying the $200 for netfabb-ultimaker, or should i just pay for it and avoid a heap of hastles. I assume the user support is much better with netfabb-ultimaker

If cash is an immediate concern, just stick with SF (or one of the SF wrappers) for now.. NF will get a lot more interesting once they get volumetric 5D in there. Until then it's seriously limited in terms of calibration, compared to SF40+.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
While researching, it seems that most of the sub 80 micron prints are done with Netfab/Marlin, is this true? If so, is there any reason for this, or coincidence/personal preference?

probably a matter of patience :-)

NF is still the fastest slicer, AFAIK, and SF simply takes ages to do the same thing (about 400x slower), cura has greatly improved things, and I'd say it's only 50x slower than NF, and slic3r is inbetween NF and cura, in terms of speed. the more layers, the longer it takes to slice...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
While researching, it seems that most of the sub 80 micron prints are done with Netfab/Marlin, is this true? If so, is there any reason for this, or coincidence/personal preference?

I used slic3r, and got prints to 7.5 micron resolution (however, it failed pretty quickly due to the non-stickyness).

Netfabb is better because it doesnt have the problem that it will chew up your memory on high-res prints. The more high-res a print is, the longer you have to wait for the print. Netfabb takes around 15 min. for a very high res print, while it can take up to 30 min for slic3r (after which it complains about lack of memory).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×

Important Information

Welcome to the Ultimaker Community of 3D printing experts. Visit the following links to read more about our Terms of Use or our Privacy Policy. Thank you!