[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to compare the apical sealing capacity of three types of gutta-percha master cones of the same apical size and different tapers following root canal preparation with nickel-titanium ProTaper Universal rotary instruments and microstructural replication with System B and Obtura III. Thirty extracted human incisors having one single straight root canal (type I Weine) were instrumented with rotary ProTaper to an F3 (30/.09) and gauged to confirm a final apical size of #30. Teeth were divided into three groups (n = 10) to be obturated as follows: Group 1: master cone Meta 0.06 taper/AH Plus, Group 2: master cone fine-medium Autofit 0.08 taper/AH Plus, and Group 3: master cone ProTaper F3 0.09 taper/AH Plus. The chosen technique was the continuous wave of compaction (System B and Obtura III). Teeth were embedded in acrylic and incrementally reduced at 0.5 and 1.0 mm from the apical foramina in a grinding machine for metallographic samples. Sections were examined and digitally photographed under a metallographic optical microscope in normal and polarized light and the images were processed. The total cross-sectional area of the root canal, the gutta-percha/sealer/voids' areas were quantified for each sample and statistically compared using one-way ANOVA and Kruskal-Wallis tests. No statistically significant differences between groups were observed (P > 0.05); however, the mean percentage of the gutta-percha-filled area was slightly higher in Group 1 at both levels of observation. Despite different tapers, all the three types of cones provided a good sealing capacity in the last apical millimeter of the root canal, with good gutta-percha-sealer ratio and few or no voids.