[Review] The Voltivo ExcelFil EVO and the Voltivo ExcelFil PLA, two great filaments for 3D printers

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Disclaimer: the comments and opinions expressed in this review are the results of our own (limited!) experience with the product. As always, we try to provide context to give a fair overview of the product. We strive to remain impartial and unbiased, and we have not received any payment or compensation of any form for writing this article. The Voltivo ExcelFil PLA and Voltivo ExcelFil EVO printing filament was given to Aniwaa by Voltivo.

Brand Voltivo Voltivo
Model ExcelFil PLA ExcelFil EVO
Price $49/kg $61/kg
Rating 4.2/5 4.2/5

INTRODUCTION

Today, we‘re testing two 3D filaments from the manufacturer Voltivo. The ExcelFil PLA and the ExcelFil EVO. This article aims to give a fair evaluation of these filaments for 3D printer through the 3D printing of a standard 3D file, the famous Benchy.

A filament spool of Voltivo ExcelFil PLA before we open it for our review

A filament spool of Voltivo ExcelFil PLA before we open it for our review.

Voltivo is a Taiwanese manufacturer based in Taipei, operating under German management, with a global distribution network. Voltivo is a fast-growing 3D filaments manufacturer offering a wide range of innovative products. The company is specialized in three main types of filaments for 3D printers: filaments for everyday use, speciality filaments and accessories.

We have tested in a previous review their ExcelFil TECH 3D filaments, the Aluminum and the Wood Composite and they both delivered very good results. Today, we’re testing their PLA filament and their new EVO filament. The ExcelFil EVO boasts numerous properties that can make it a serious alternative to ABS and other advanced materials.

3D filaments used for this test: We have tested the Voltivo ExcelFil Candy Yellow PLA 1.75 mm diameter filament in 1Kg and the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO BETA 6  1.75 mm diameter in a sample 200g spool, on a bq Witbox 2 3D printer equipped with a BuildTak 3D print surface. This 3D printer is not equipped with a heated printbed.

 

PACKAGING

Packaging rating: 4/5

  • Unboxing: an excellent packaging

A filament spool of Voltivo ExcelFil PLA inside its vacuum sealed plastic bag. QR codes are clearly visible.

A filament spool of Voltivo ExcelFil PLA inside its vacuum sealed plastic bag. QR codes are clearly visible.

The Voltivo ExcelFil PLA was delivered in a cardboard box protected by a thin layer of plastic. Inside the box, the 3D filament itself is packaged in a hi-quality vacuum sealed plastic pouch which contains a desiccant to avoid the product to get deteriorated by humidity. The spool itself is made of plastic.

However the spool has a very small hole, which proved to be problematic for the thick pool holder of our bq Witbox 2, so we had to improvise and hang the spool above the 3D printer.

The sample spool of the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO (BETA 6).

The sample spool of the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO (BETA 6).

The Voltivo ExcelFil EVO was delivered in a cute sample plastic spool, itself packaged in a plastic bag, but not vacuumed sealed. It must be noted that on the contrary of the ExcelFil PLA, the ExcelFil EVO was delivered as a sample and we did not received the consumer version of the product, soon to be available.

  • Instruction manual: a QR code easy to use and powerful

No information about the printing parameters is provided on the spool itself, but a simple QR code allows the user to directly access from their smartphone a dedicated webpage with the specific setup information for the filament, such as the recommended extrusion temperature. The QR code was present on both the consumer grade Voltivo ExcelFil PLA spool and the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO sample spool.

 

OVERVIEW AND  SETUP

Overview and setup rating: 4.7/5

  • Software – 4/5

Our bq Witbox 2 is operated by the Cura software for the preparation of the 3D printing instructions in gCode from STL file. We used the standard recommended profile from bq for the Voltivo ExcelFil PLA with an extrusion temperature of 209°C. For the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO we used the recommended extrusion temperature of  215°C.

  • Hardware – 5/5

Because of the inner hole diameter of the spool of ExcelFil PLa we had to improvise and arrange it above the 3D printer.

Because of the inner hole diameter of the spool of ExcelFil PLA we had to improvise and arrange it above the 3D printer.

The Voltivo ExcelFil EVO does not require any specific tune up of the 3D printer on the extruder and offset parameters. For the Voltivo ExcelFil PLA we had to position the spool above the 3D printer using a custom-made spool holder because it was its hole was to tight to fit on the bq Witbox 2 default spool holder. This is a potential setback for users but related to our specific 3D printer.

Both filaments offer a very good adhesion to the build platform, even without a heated printbed (but with the BuildTak surface).

  • Getting started – 5/5

The overall setup experience for both filaments was quick and easy. Our first prints for the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO and for the Voltivo ExcelFil PLA were a success.

 

EXPERIENCE

Experience rating: 4.5/5

  • 3D printing – 4.5/5

3D printing the Voltivo ExcelFil PLA and the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO is a smooth experience. The processes are conducted to the end perfectly for both of them at 100, 200 and 300 microns layer thickness at a 60 mm/s extrusion speed.

 

3D PRINTS RESULTS

To evaluate the performance of the Voltivo ExcelFil PLA and the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO, we started by printing some Benchys, the “standard 3D model” which many makers now use as a benchmark to evaluate a 3D printer or 3D filament performance across several parameters (surfaces, level of details, overhangs, ….).

The Benchy were easy to remove from the print bed in all tests, and the detail of the logo on its bottom always looked good. We used the standard PLA Cura print speed of 60 mm/s.

A. 3D PRINTS RESULTS Voltivo ExcelFil PLA – 4.5/5

1. Benchy

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil PLA at 100 microns resolution.

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil PLA at 100 microns resolution.

We first tested the 100 microns layer thickness and the result was perfect after only a little finishing.

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil PLA at 300 microns resolution.

3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil PLA at 300 microns resolution.

We then tried to test with less favorable 3D printing settings, and chose a layer thickness of 300 microns. The result is still very convincing. Of course the layers are much more visible but on bigger objects that should not be an issue. The details are still well preserved.

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil PLA at 100 microns resolution. Even if the quality is good, some extra threads need to be removed.

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil PLA at 100 microns resolution. Even if the quality is good, some extra threads need to be removed.

The Voltivo ExcelFil PLA is a top quality PLA, with a vibrant yellow color. However the Benchy required some cutter cleaning to remove the excess filament threads that were extruded in overhangs, an issue not seen on the ExcelFil EVO.

B. 3D PRINTS RESULTS Voltivo ExcelFil EVO – 4.5/5

1. Benchy

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil EVO at 200 microns resolution.

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil EVO at 200 microns resolution.

First we tested the medium 200 microns layer thickness and obtained good results.

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil EVO at 100 microns resolution.

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil EVO at 100 microns resolution, without any finishing.

We then tried to test more degraded settings and chose a layer thickness of 300 microns. The result is still very convincing with only minor defects where the overhangs are the most difficulties (cf. the arch).

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil EVO at 100 microns resolution.

Benchy 3D printed with Voltivo ExcelFil EVO at 100 microns resolution.

We then tested the 100 microns layer thickness and the result was perfect, even with almost no finishing required.

Regarding the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO BETA 6, this 3D filament received an optimized crystallization profile to leave very little discernible layer structure on the prints, which works perfectly. However the color is a little tarnish compared to the Voltivo ExcelFil PLA but it also comes with advantages: its texture is very nice to touch and the material have less a “plastic” look than other classic PLA or ABS. The material is also less brittle compared to the ExcelFil PLA.

 

VALUE

A. VALUE ExcelFil PLA – 3/5

The Voltivo ExcelFil PLA is a very good PLA 3D filament but very expensive for such a basic material. It offers a great performance level and nice aesthetics.

B. VALUE ExcelFil EVO – 3/5

The Voltivo ExcelFil EVO BETA 6 is an interesting material which 3D prints very well, and is stronger than regular PLA. However, its color is a bit tarnished and its price too high.

CONCLUSION

Aniwaa’s opinion: 4.2/5

Our overall rating reflects our experience with the Voltivo ExcelFil EVO BETA 6 and the Voltivo ExcelFil PLA 3D filaments printed on a bq Witbox 2.

Weight RatingExcelFil PLA RatingExcelFil EVO
Packaging 1 4/5 4/5
Overview 2 4.67/5 4.67/5
Experience 2 4.5/5 4.5/5
3D print results 2 4.5/5 4.5/5
Value 1 3/5 3/5
FINAL RATING 4.2/5 4.2/5

The Voltivo ExcelFil EVO BETA 6 and the ExcelFil PLA are great 3D printing material which produce high quality results. The ExcelFil EVO is suited for use cases that require robustness and low visibility of the layers, with great texture. Its color however is less brilliant than its counterpart. It requires almost no finish.

The ExcelFil PLA is more of an everyday use filament suited for almost any prints, with a luminous color (at least in the Candy Yellow color). The texture is more “plastic” and require more finish time and effort compared to the EVO.

In both cases (and for its complete line of products), Voltivo takes good care of providing accessible information about the recommended print parameters through an easy to use QR code system and the packaging is excellent. The only downside is the relatively high price of these filaments, but to obtain quality 3D prints from the first to the last meter of filament it is totally worth the investment.

 

We carry hands-on tests of 3D printers, 3D scanners and 3D filaments in our lab. Get in touch if you’d like us to review your products!

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