Artillery Sidewinder SW-X2 3D Printer Review: A redefined X1?

Artillery 3D is a familiar manufacturer of budget 3D printers based in China. Previously, Artillery 3D released printers like Sidewinder X1, which was an instant hit on the market. As an upgraded variant of that popular model, Artillery 3D released the Sidewinder SW-X2 back in 2018. So, does the Sidewinder X2 successfully correct the mistakes of its predecessors and become a solid choice as a budget 3D printer? Well, that’s what we will find out in today’s Artillery Sidewinder 3D printer review.

There are certain aspects of 3D printers that buyers consider to choose a suitable product for themselves. In the table below, I have rated a few such elements of the Artillery Sidewinder X2.

Artillery Sidewinder X2 3D Printer Performance Ratings
  • Ease-of-Use
  • Features
  • Value for Money
  • Durability
  • Looks
4.1

Summary

Artillery Sidewinder X2 has a lot of benefits that make it such a popular product on the market

Artillery Sidewinder SW-X2 3D Printer Specifications

Every machine has technical specifications that describe the mechanical capacity and compatibility. Below, I have compiled the technical specifications of the Artillery Sidewinder X2. You’ll have a general idea of what to expect from the 3D printer from the table below.

  • Printing technology: FDM
  • Printing speed: 60 to 150mm/s
  • Travel speed: 250mm/sec
  • Layer resolution: 0.1 to 0.35mm
  • Operational noise: level <70 dBA
  • Printing area: 300x300x400mm
  • Filament compatibility: PLA, ABS, Flexible Materials, Wood, PVA, HIPS, Carbon Fiber
  • Filament diameter: 1.75 mm
  • Nozzle diameter: 0.4 mm
  • Number of extruders: 1
  • Connectivity: Micro SD, USB Drive, USB-B to PC

Artillery Sidewinder 3D printer Pros and Cons

Artillery Sidewinder SW-X2 has a lot of benefits that make it such a popular product on the market. But alongside those benefits, there are some drawbacks too that you need to consider. Though those drawbacks should not be deal-breakers, you should know about them as we advance to make an informed decision.

Artillery Sidewinder X2 pros

Pros

  • The apparent advantage of Artillery Sidewinder SW-X2 is the excellent print quality. As far as I have tested, the prints have a good amount of details, and the result was pretty consistent.
  • Apart from the heat itself, it’s also important to consider how fast the bed heats up. In that regard, Artillery Sidewinder X2 is a banger providing one of the fastest heating in any budget 3D printer.
  • Artillery Sidewinder X2 is equipped with an auto bed leveling feature, which is a plus side. But on top of that, a leveling probe also gives a good start by printing a high-quality first layer.
  • Assembly of 3D printers is always a challenge. So, to prevent beginners from facing this challenge, Sidewinder X2 comes semi-assembled in the package. The remaining assemble pretty straightforward too.
  • Artillery Sidewinder X2 has an upgraded 32-bit motherboard compared to conventional 8-bit motherboards. This upgrade motherboard offers several added benefits like better cooling, easy stepper replacement, and customization.
  • Last, I have to address the considerably larger print volume of the Artillery Sidewinder X2 3D printer. Now, your prints won’t be limited by the lack of print volume.

Cons

  • Though the bed heating of Artillery Sidewinder SW-X2 is pretty fast, the same cannot be said for the heat distribution. The heat distribution was somewhat inconsistent according to my testing.
  • The touch screen control has many features, which are relay appreciated. But the experience with it is hampered due to the phantom tap issue of the display.
  • The pricing of artillery Sidewinder X2 is not stable at all. So, pinning a unit down at a specific price can be challenging.

Related: Best Cheap Resin 3D Printer

What is the Artillery Sidewinder SW-X2 3d printer like physically?

Artillery Sidewinder X2 has a classic design like any other entry-level 3D printer. You’ll find a lot of similarities with other printers available on the market in the same price class. There might be some changes like the filament location, but the rest should be identical to other 3D printers. As far as build quality goes, there was no compromise from the side of Artillery Sidewinder X2. The entire construction is made of high-quality aluminum. So the functionality and the design of the Sidewinder 3D printer go hand in hand.

Artillery Sidewinder X2 used

How is the Artillery Sidewinder X2 3d printer used?

If you have previous experience with those horrible 3D printer assemblies, Artillery Sidewinder X2 will bring you a breeze of fresh air. Out of the box, the printer ships semi-assembled. All that remains of the assembly is the Z-axis installation. Moreover, Sidewinder made that easier by attaching the pins at the bottom. You have to screw the Z-axis, and you will be good to go. The filament spool sits at the top of the frame. One little drawback here is that there is no sample filament available with the printer, so you’ll have to buy the filament even for your first printing.

Artillery Sidewinder X2 3d printer Key features

Print performance

Artillery Sidewinder X2 performance

As I mentioned earlier, the printing performance of Artillery Sidewinder is fantastic. Several factors contribute to this tremendous printing performance. For starters, there is the titan extruder that ensures optimum filament supply. Then comes the volcano hotend. Volcano hotend’s primary purpose is to help optimize large-scale printing without compromising the details of the print.

Moreover, the volcanic hotend has a much higher filament flow, resulting in a faster printing speed. I have tested the performance through several prints, and the printer delivered beautiful results with details. Especially with large prints, the result was flawless. But if you want to print smaller prints at high speed, some artifacts might be noticeable. One thing Artillery always boasted about was the quiet stepper drivers. When I got to test this printer for the first time, I was amazed by its silent performance. I had it in a room suit next to my bedroom, and there was no disturbing noise that could force me to pace the printer somewhere else.

Print volume

The printing volume of the Artillery Sidewinder 3D printer is considerably bigger than its competitors. It’s pretty uncommon to see such large-scale print volume in budget 3D printers, so this function alone was pretty impressive to me. Most home 3D printers don’t have a volume as big as 300 x 300 x 400 mm. The printer gives you a significant advantage in printing larger parts.

Artillery Sidewinder X2 control

Control

The Artillery Sidewinder X2 offers all the standard connectivity options like micro SD card support and USB. So setting up should be easy. I know many of you guys are looking for Wi-Fi connections, so I have to disappoint you. Artillery Sidewinder 3D doesn’t offer Wi-Fi connectivity, unfortunately. However, the USB should be enough to set up the printer easily.

As far as the control goes, the touch screen display was decent enough to offer the basic controls over the printer. The UI is pretty standard, which means every beginner should be able to understand it easily. I have faced some occasion fantom tap issues, but I think Artillery will work on that issue in the future.

Printing bed

Artillery Sidewinder X2 printing bed

Despite the heat distribution issue I mentioned earlier, the printing bed is still one of the strongest suits of the Artillery Sidewinder 3D printer. Firstly, the bed offers auto-leveling, a most wanted feature in any 3D printer. Next, an additional leveling probe ensures the first few layers go well and give a solid foundation. The leveling might be automatic, but initially, you have to set the leveling manually once. After that, you can use the touch screen control to auto-level the bed. The printing bed is made of coated tempered glass, so the adhesion from the bed is fantastic. Lastly, the bed heats up very quickly too. So there is no chance of thermal runway, warping, and poor adhesion.

Artillery Sidewinder X2 compatibility

Filament compatibility

Filament compatibility makes 3D printers versatile. The more filaments it’s compatible with, the operation will be more efficient and favorable to the user. In this regard, the Artillery Sidewinder 3D printer offers compatibility with almost all the filament types available on the market. Different filaments are suitable for different types of projects, so wider filament compatibility definitely gives you an upper hand in printing.

Final Verdict

When the Artillery Sidewinder was first released, it was a solid machine that could compete with already established players like Creality. After the release of the Sidewinder X2, there were certain enhancements, but they were not enough to end the competition. However, the bright side here is that Artillery didn’t ruin the goodness of the previous X1 through massive changes in the Sidewinder X2.

Consumers previously appreciated Artillery for acting on the complaints about the printers. That trend seems to continue with Sidewinder X2 too. On top of everything else, this 3D printer seems to check all the boxes any good 3D printer would have checked, like a large printing area, heated bed, and direct extrusion for high quality consistent 3D printing. Overall, I would definitely recommend Artillery Sidewinder SW-X2 as an option worth considering.

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