The world saw a significant innovation in printing technology when 3D printing was first introduced. This technology has not only simplified the process of constructing models but has also made it possible for us to create models with more detailing and precision. Since then, the market has been flooded with printing programs that help you achieve the desired model construction. Two such popular 3D slicers are Simplify3D and Cura. Both these software are used widely for printing the models, but people who just begin with this technology often ask about the differences between these programs and which one should be used.
Simplify3D vs Cura
So to give you a broad idea about both the programs, read this article on Cura vs. Simplify3D to understand how they differ from one another along with their features.
|Cost||Simplify3D (S3D) is not free software and it costs around $149. As it doesn’t give an option of a free trial, it can be a major turn off for the people who are just starting with 3D printing.||Cura is free and open-source software that makes it a better choice for beginners and amateurs.|
|Functionality||S3D is a slicer as well as the modeling program as it allows modifying the dimensions in models and also importing the 3D models that are predesigned.||Cura also allows importing the predesigned models and modifying it as per the preference.|
|Availability||This software is available for all the operating systems such as Mac OS, Windows and Ubuntu Linux.||Cura is also free software for everyone and all types of OS.|
|Software Layout||S3D has a clean and user-friendly interface. It has a panel on the left that has all the buttons for managing as well as printing models.||This software is similar to S3D as the user-interface is quite intuitive. The functions used for managing the process are given in the small toolbar with big icons for easy operation.|
|Positioning buttons||Simplify3D has all the buttons that are needed for scaling and positioning models on the right.||Cura doesn’t have the panel showing the buttons for positioning it unless you import the model and start working on it.|
|Processing Time||This software has relatively lower processing time than Cura.||Cura takes a longer time to complete the process of augmented layers.|
|Plug-ins and Updates||Simplify3D lacks the feature of plug-ins and has had only updates for improving the performance and removing the bugs.||This software has an online marketplace where the users can get free plug-ins that are developed by the users’ community. These plug-ins are free and can add an extra set of features to the software. The updates are also free for this software.|
|Configuration||People might need some experience with 3D printing to adjust the settings and configure S3D.||The users have found it easy to configure the software and start using it.|
|Result Quality||This slicer allows the users to modify or make adaptations in every layer. This feature can improve the detailing of the model.||Although there are many advances in Cura, it doesn’t provide the feature of making modifications at each level.|
Is Simplify3D worth it?
After reading all the differences and features of the programs, this is one question you might come across. So the answer to this question is: Yes, it is worth it!
Although Cura has its own set of pros and unique features, Simplify3D has premium features that make it different from the free software. The customization, process and support feature of this software makes it worth the dollars you invest in it.
If, after reading this blog, you are confused about which one to go with, then I will make that decision easy, when it comes to print quality and major functionalities both Cura and Simplify3D work similarly. Cura has the upper hand because it is an open-source and also has plug-ins with free updates. The software had five updates in 2019 itself, and hence even though it is free software, the developers have not compromised on its working and features. Said that Simplify3D is also a great software if you want to take the detailing of your model a notch up.
Both the software are ideal for 3D printing, but I would suggest you first opt for Cura, learn the basics and then proceed to buy Simplify3D depending upon your project. You can also keep both the software and opt for the one as and when required.