Exploring the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D Printer: A Hands-on Review – Part 3


The Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

Our look at the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer concludes with results and final thoughts.

This is part three of a three part series, please read parts one and two.

Sidewinder X3 Pro Results

Terrific print result from the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

Our review process involved a series of standard test prints to evaluate the X3 Pro’s performance. We were immediately impressed by the rapid heating of the hotend, a testament to Artillery’s robust power supply. Hardware-wise, the printer was reliable, with the only minor issue being a faint warbling sound from the hot end’s cooling fan, which wasn’t significant enough to affect our testing.

The ease of filament changes was notable, thanks to the firmware’s user-friendly interface and presets for temperature, extrusion length, and speed. We did encounter first layer adhesion issues with our 3D_test_V3_0.4mm print, but this turned out to be a filament quality problem rather than a flaw of the X3 Pro. Switching to a higher quality filament like Polymaker’s excellent PolySonic PLA Pro resolved the issue and improved print quality, reinforcing the adage that cheap filament yields cheap results.

Excellent calibration cube made on the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

Our XYZ calibration cube printed flawlessly, showing no ghosting or ringing, likely due to the effective input shaping. The knurled nut & bolt and the cylindricity test pieces printed excellently and fit together seamlessly.

In regards to time estimations for printing, we discovered that UltiMaker Cura’s predictions were consistently double the actual print times. However, the estimates given by PrusaSlicer were much more accurate.

We initiated our review with a manually created Cura profile at 150mm/s, and then adjusted settings to explore faster speeds up to the advertised 300mm/s. This produced a#3DBenchy in 31 minutes, which was considerably faster than our initial 53-minute print, even though there was minor ringing. It suggests that there might be a need to readjust the input shaping at higher speeds in order to remove these artifacts.

Working planetary gears printed on the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

Our review included a variety of print-in-place models to test the X3 Pro’s capabilities with PLA. The spring-loaded box, planetary gears, and carabiner all printed successfully, although they initially required extra effort to move. The rainbow PLA spiral vase was a standout, showcasing excellent print quality.

Attempts at printing the Nervous System Lamp test model on the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

However, the nervous lamp model presented challenges, as it repeatedly detached from the build plate despite using a large brim.

Successful Nervous System Lamp print made on the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

Switching to PrusaSlicer with Artillery’s profiles improved the print quality significantly, but at the cost of a lengthy 13 hours and 33 minutes using the 120mm/s PLA profile, suggesting that certain complex models benefit from slower print speeds.

Terrific PLA print made on the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

Exploring other filament types, our ABS PETG Chip_bag_clip_V7_1 printed well at similar speeds to the PLA prints.

ABS test print made on the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

The ABS bottle opener whistle, printed at 80mm/s with a hefty 1cm brim, came out flawlessly without any warping.

Excellent TPU print produced with the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

The TPU bracelet, printed at a slow speed of 30mm/s, also resulted in good output but posed a challenge to remove from the build plate because of its strong adhesion to the plate.

Wrapping up our assessment, we adjusted Artillery’s PrusaSlicer PLA profile, enhancing speeds to approach the proclaimed 300mm/s. Our velocity evaluations and a #3DBenchy printed using speedboatrace settings wrapped up remarkably in just 29 minutes, setting a record for our swiftest Benchy so far.

Sliced for 300mm/s speed on the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

Whilst the standard was satisfactory, it wasn’t remarkable, signifying a compromise between speed and print quality at these elevated rates. This test highlighted the X3 Pro’s potential for high-velocity printing, albeit with some sacrifices in finer details.

Performing a flow test on the Artillery Sidewinder X3 Pro 3D printer [Source: Fabbaloo]

To understand a bit more about the machine’s extrusion capacity, we undertook a volumetric test. This test spurts out fixed amounts of material at different flow rates and temperatures, and it’s possible to analyze the results to see where the capacity tops out.

Unfortunately, our flow test results were a bit weird. It seems that the extrusion system doesn’t “fall off” like most, but instead gradually fades in capacity. This is not optimal if you’re trying to push extrusion to the maximum, but acceptable at lower print speeds.

Sidewinder X3 Pro Final Thoughts

The X3 Pro showed remarkable resilience when it experienced shipping impacts with little harm due to its solid construction and quality packaging. The encountered issues included a loose Y-axis and a broken nozzle wipe bin, but the second problem did not pose a real challenge.

In conducting our assessments, we usually stick to utilizing only the resources offered by the maker, ensuring a representative fresh-out-of-package encounter. This technique emphasizes the lengths to which a user may need to go in order to reach the advertised output, accentuating the importance of ample resources. Ideally, you could get anything to work if you had limitless resources, but a majority of operators are unable to do so.

The X3 Pro’s assembly process was uncomplicated, however, the user handbook’s instructions were unclear, which could be problematic for a beginner. Similar issues arose in the slicer setup, where one must manually configure the printer in UltiMaker Cura and generate a PLA profile, representing the need for a more streamlined setup procedure. Furthermore, guidance for input shaping and linear advancement calibration was missing from the manual. Even though, Artillery’s technical support compensated effectively by supplying the necessary documentations when requested.

We switched from UltiMaker Cura to PrusaSlicer halfway through the review process. Despite this initially obstructing our review workflow, the PrusaSlicer_config_bundle was a valuable upgrade. It instantaneously set up the X3 Pro in the slicer, inclusive of profiles for PLA, PETG, ABS, and TPU, along with custom configurations. This degree of automation in slicer setup serves as an example of what should have been incorporated with the printer at the outset. We hope that this becomes a benchmark for future iterations.

The hardware of the X3 Pro largely won our admiration, its fast-heating nozzle and sensitive LCD touchscreen being highlights.

The hotend’s temperature rose from 18°C to 200°C in approximately 38 seconds, even taking stabilization time into account. We detected a slight whistling sound from the heatbreak fan, but this was hardly noticeable unless one spent extended periods near the printer.

The prints created using the Artillery’s custom profiles were outstanding, managing to finish jobs that had previously failed. The unique nozzle cleaning function, although interesting, seemed a bit unnecessary for a setup with a single extruder, hinting at potential future enhancements for models supporting multiple extruders or materials.

There were a few unusual features we noted. The addition of a backup nozzle without the needed tool to replace it appeared to be an oversight. If one wanted to adjust the tension of the extruder gear, the cover had to be removed to reach a concealed hex bolt—this brought about speculations whether this was an unintentional manufacturing error or a calculated design decision to limit user adjustments. In contrast to the sturdier linear rails used in other high-speed printers, the motion system of the X3 Pro depends on v-slot wheels, ensuring more accurate and smoother movement.

In conclusion, the X3 Pro is a solid printer, but its optimal performance seems to be in the 120-150mm/s speed range for standard 0.2mm layer prints. This positions it more as an entry-level device in the high-speed printing category, competent but not pushing the boundaries of printing speed.







✔︎ Rapid heating

✔︎ Superior touchscreen

✔︎ Prusaslicer bundle


✖︎ Poor instructions

✖︎ High-speed profiles

✖︎ Z-gap adjustment

This is part three of a three part series, please read parts one and two.

Via Artillery

Original source


“Why did the 3D printer go to therapy? Because it had too many layers of unresolved issues!”

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