MKS Monster 8 V2 Firmware & Setup Information


This firmware is being put out as a courtesy for people who want to use the MKS Monster 8 V2 in their custom printer. Setup and usage of this firmware are *not* covered under the technical support of any TH3D Products unless you bought the board from us and/or purchased the firmware with the Technical Support addon. Using the MKS Monster 8 V2 in a custom printer is an advanced setup for users who know what they are doing. Our firmware also includes a custom STL for a case that we designed to hold this board, our V3 MOSFET for your bed, and a spot to bolt up your EZABL control box to the rear.

Important Information #

Stepper Drivers #

This firmware is set up to work with the MKS TMC2209 V2 drivers in UART Mode. See the pictures below for jumper settings.

Z Homing Direction #

This firmware only supports homing Z to the MIN position (not MAX) at this time.

MicroSD Card Flashing #

This board uses a MicroSD card to flash. If you are having issues getting the board to accept the firmware then see this page for details on making sure you are using the correct type and format of card: Flashing Firmware MicroSD Recommendations

Physical Board Setup Information #

Below are different setups for different printer setups. Drivers have to be inserted in the correct way and jumpers must be set properly for things to work. Below are the 4 most common setups for drivers with pics showing how things should be installed. This board also has open-source documents from MKS directly on the GitHub repo here:

General Pinouts #

Endstop Connections #

This board supports 2 and 3 pin endstop types. If you have a 3 pin make sure to match up the pin order on the plug to the board. You can see in the above picture its labeled with V, G, and S on the endstop row. If you have a 2 pin endstop, connect to the G and S pins. If you have a 3 pin endstop, connect to all 3 with the S pin going to the COMMON pin on the endstop and then the V and G can go to the NC and NO pins respectively.

Jumper Installation #

Before installing drivers you will need to install the UART jumper as shown below and make sure your board stock jumpers match the one in the 1st picture below. There is only one jumper needed per driver and we recommend just installing them on Drivers 0-5 as shown below.

How To Install the Drivers #

The drivers MUST be installed correctly. Below are pictures showing how to install them. You also must install the heatsink on the drivers making sure to align the heatsink centered on the long part of the driver and NOT hitting any of the pins. The edge of the heatsink should be lined up with the end of the driver that does not have the potentiometer on it. See below for detailed pictures. Failure to follow the directions may result in driver damage that is not covered under warranty.

Single Extruder w/Single Z Motor Control #

NOTE: You can drive 2 Z motors off the one driver by connecting to the Driver2-1 and Driver 2-2 plugs on the board.

Single Extruder w/DUAL Z Motor Control #

NOTE: This enables the use of G34 gantry leveling if you also have an ABL probe installed.

DUAL Extruder w/Single Z Motor Control #

NOTE: You can drive 2 Z motors off the one driver by connecting to the Driver2-1 and Driver 2-2 plugs on the board.

DUAL Extruder w/DUAL Z Motor Control #

NOTE: This enables the use of G34 gantry leveling if you also have an ABL probe installed.

Download #

Using the Firmware #

Things to read BEFORE Starting #

File Locations #

Many users have been having issues due to odd folder setups on their computers. If you do not follow the below advice the firmware may have issues compiling.

  • Do NOT put the firmware folder in a cloud storage folder (OneDrive, Google Drive, Dropbox, etc.)
  • Do NOT use weird folder names (aka ones with anything other than letters and numbers)
  • Do NOT use very deep paths. We work out of a folder on our main drive with a subfolder for the printer we are working on. Example: C:\Printer Firmware\TimsEnder3\

Marlin Auto Build #

Our firmware does NOT use Marlin Auto Build. Do not use Marlin Auto Build with our firmware. Use the directions below instead.

Video Guide #

We now have a video guide you can follow as well.

Opening the firmware in Visual Studio Code #

Once the files are extracted you will need to open the folder in Visual Studio Code. You must open the folder named Firmware and not any other one. Failure to open the firmware at the correct folder level will result in it not working.

First time using our firmware or having issues? Watch our video that is intended to clear up common mistakes people make when opening and using the firmware here: Unified 2 VSCode Tips for Noobs | EZTip #8 – YouTube

Once the folder is opened, you will expand the Marlin folder on the left and side and then double click on the file called “Configuration.h”. This file is where you will set up the firmware for your specific printer.

Editing The Configuration.h File #

In the configuration.h file there are printer models you can uncomment to tell the firmware what machine you are setting it up for. Uncomment means removing the // in front of a setting and you will be left with #define XXXXXX if an option is enabled.

There are many other options in the firmware for setting up upgrades, tuning, and other features. Read through the files configuration section to see all the features we’ve put in the firmware for you.

We have an article here with more details about the use of the configuration.h file.

Testing the Firmware Settings #

Once you have all the options you want and your printer model setting uncommented now it’s time to make sure it compiles with no issues. To do that just click the ✓ at the bottom-left of Visual Studio Code and it will build the firmware.

If the build succeeds it is ready for you to upload to your printer. You will know if it was successfully built because it will show a SUCCESS in green at the bottom of the window in Visual Studio Code.

Example of what a successful compile looks like. Your environment name may be different from what is shown above.

Flashing the Firmware #

Upload the firmware to your board (SD Card Method) #

Now that we have the firmware tested we can upload it to your printer. Your particular printer uses a SD Card to upload it to the printer board. The firmware will be in a folder that matches the CPU name in .pio > build > CPUNAME. There will only be ONE folder in the Build folder so you just open that folder. Your folder name may be different from the picture shown below. You can open the folder by right-clicking on the folder for your board’s CPU and clicking “Reveal in File Explorer”.

In this folder you will look for a file with a .bin file extension, this is the firmware that you will put on the SD card. Some printers require the .bin file to be put in a specific folder. If your printer requires a specific folder name to put the firmware in to flash it we will list it above at the beginning of this page, most printers do not require a folder.
Open the folder for your board CPU. Inside will be your .bin file needed for flashing.

Different printers/boards will have different .bin file names but they will all end in the .bin file extension.

Once you locate the .bin file for your board copy this to your SD card. This SD card MUST be formatted with FAT or FAT32 file system and most boards prefer a 4096 allocation byte size. Smaller cards (16GB or less) are better to use than larger ones for the best compatibility.

If you have multiple .bin files listed, choose the one with the latest time & date on it.

Power off your printer and put the SD card into your printer’s SD slot. Turn the power on. This will cause the printer to flash the firmware from the SD card to your printer CPU. This may take up to 1 minute on some boards.

DO NOT UNPLUG THE PRINTER. Interrupting the flashing can “brick” your board and if this happens you will need to reflash the bootloader with a programmer before you can flash again.

When the printer boots you may see the TH3D logo on your LCD, printers with low-end CPUs may not show a TH3D logo but all will show a Marlin screen with TH3D Studio showing on the version information.

Reset your EEPROM! #

Make sure to reset your EEPROM on your printer after flashing any firmware. You can do this from your printer LCD by going to Configuration -> Reset EEPROM or by sending an M502 followed by M500 with your favorite Gcode sender application.

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