MatterControl 2.0 Beta

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Captain Starfish
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MatterControl 2.0 Beta

Postby Captain Starfish » Tue Dec 04, 2018 8:28 am

Hi all

Been a long time since I visited - my printer was settled in and being used, abused and neglected like a red headed apprentice so not much to report. I've built an enclosure which is working great and I'm waiting on a water cooled E3D chimera head to try some snappy PLA support for ABS fun times (worked great on my knockoff air cooled chimera until the pla jammed again). I'm waiting on build/delivery of my Swissmak 7 axis machine from GD. Otherwise life trundles on.

But I had to come back for warning old friends. I fired up MatterControl yesterday and got the "UPDATE AvAILABLE" message. Yeahboi, it's been ages, let's roll!!

A word to the wise: if you want to use your printer to print, instead of being part of an adventure, stick with 1.x.

I was right behind Matter Hackers' software and approach until 2.0, but now I've gotta admit: the day my piezo Z sensor arrives and is installed, the day I can enable bed levelling support in firmware? That's the day I no longer rely on the bed levelling in Mattercontrol which is the only reason I'm stuck with it.

Until 2.0 it's been a half reasonable compromise of not too many settings to get annoying, not too few (most times) to get frustrating, slick flow through typical user stories. And it let me do a 7 point manual bed calibration which made a huge difference to adhesion, particularly with a lumpy sheet of PEI on my Rostock Max 1.0's glass sheet.

But 2.0? Sorry guys, but get your act together. My 1.x flow was drag stl to application, generate toolpath, preview, print. Now the drag and drop is gone in favour of some BS "let's make kindergarten cones and cubes" interface which I will never use. And I had to hunt menus to find a print or export gcode button.

W

T

F.

Guys @ matterhackers... There's some serious dev work gone into this and I do appreciate that. Seriously. It's beautiful. But someone needed (and failed) to keep track of what most of your punters need this app to do:
1. Import an STL file from an infinitely more capable (and now free, thanks Autodesk via Fusion and open source new/improved FreeCAD) CAD system;
2. Do some settings stuff; and
3. Export to file (for offline SD style printing) or print the thing.
4. Get a sane print.

Your v2.0 beta's UI makes these fundamental things harder to achieve than 1.x, and in every definition of good user experience this means: "you have enormous opportunities for improvement". (see, three whiskeys in and I still manage to put it politely). On top of that, you've removed the choice of slice engine now and your 'new improved' slicer is printing in free air and generally turning my prints to scrap. Try settings which print a skirt for priming but also have a raft, and enjoy that magic floating halo. Or, and congratulations btw, somehow get my EZstruder to turn into a one way retraction valve and jam for the first time ever in the years I've been printing.

Anyroad, to sum up; this is one of those times when you read the "This is a beta, don't install in production environments blah blah blah" warnings and you should pay attention. This ain't beta, kids, this is pre-alpha stuff. The UI is slick. If you like making kids' puzzles, the inbuilt CAD blocks stuff is fun. But if you just want to slice and print it's a PITA and it's a broken PITA. If you have time and can afford to lend a hand making it right, MatterControl has a great happy legacy which is worth supporting by helping these guys sort their sh1t out before releasing a production version.

But if you use MC and need prints to work?

Wait.

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