July 20, 2014
The latest version of MatterControl, MatterHackers' all-in-one 3D printing application, is out and available for download. As usual, this update includes a number of goodies that can be appreciated by everyone with a 3D printer, from novice to pro. New features include cloud monitoring, 3D gcode previewing and embedded sd card support. Read on to find out more.
Desktop 3D printing is still a relatively new technology for many of us; like many new technologies, it earns our trust slowly over time. Many a 3D printer owner has made the transition from anxiously hovering over each print from beginning to end to simply pressing the 'Start' button and walking away. Yet still, even as we grant our printers more and more independence, a nagging feeling persists: "How is that print doing?" we wonder, "Is it almost done?". Cloud monitoring - the latest experimental addition to MatterControl - now provides the answers. By enabling cloud monitoring on your 3D printer you can check on its status from anywhere with an internet connection.
Enabling cloud monitoring is easy, you select a printer, log in, then hit 'Enable' on the 'Configuration' page. MatterControl then automatically creates a custom webpage with the status of your printer and sends it updates on a regular basis.
Cloud monitoring is the first of several planned web-based features, collectively called 'MatterControl Cloud Sync'. Keep an eye out for future updates delivering more remote capability.
Have you ever looked at the 2D layer view and thought - 2D is nice, but the 3D would be better? We couldn't agree more - 3D is better; which is why, as of the latest update, you can preview pathing layers in their full three-dimensional glory.
The visualization works hard to accurately show the actual extrusion widths that are represented in the GCode giving you a more accurate picture of what the part is going to look like and allowing you to see the effects of settings that change extrusion, such as 'extrusion multiplier' and 'filament diameter'.
Within the 3D Gcode preview, colors represent the speed going from blue (slowest) to red (the fastest). In future versions you will be able to turn on and off the speed colors and we'll put in a legend for the layer you are viewing.
This is something we have been excited to show for a while now. The SD Card support in MatterControl fits right in with the rest of the UI. SD Card files show up in the normal Queue and can be printed, paused and canceled just the same as any other print that you would run.
You can also export directly to the printers SD Card from the export menu of items in the Queue.
If your printer has an SD Card be sure to enable it in the slice settings and let us know if you have suggestions for improving this great new feature.
The latest update also includes a number of minor improvements to stability and performance. MatterSlice, the slicing engine that powers MatterControl, also received a number of updates and additional slicing options, including improved bridging and triangle infill. You can dowload the latest version here, and you can find the release notes for this an previous versions here.
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