3D Printing

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Everything in this article is scooped, copy and pasted from here.

Read the stickies here to get reviews about the most recent and upcoming printers.

$300-$600

BUILD AREA: 7.9 x 7.9 x 7.1 in (200 x 200 x 180 mm)
Pros: Large community, easy troubleshooting, large print area, upgradeable
Cons: Electrical issues (mosfet mod now necessary imo)
Notes: Electrical issues are apparently evident in some of the new stock, even with updated connectors. I 100% recommend doing the mosfet mod regardless of purchase date.
BUILD AREA: 8.9 x 5.7 x 5.9 in (225 x 145 x 150 mm)
Pros: Inexpensive rebrand of FF Creator Pro, dual extrusion, enclosed, solid UI
Cons: PowerSpec customer support nonexistent
Notes: This printer appears to be out of stock everywhere. I'm going to have to remove it from my list from now on, because I believe they've phased this out in favor of the PowerSpec Ultra.
BUILD AREA: 8 x 8 x 7 in (200 x 200 x 180 mm)
Pros: Good value, customer service, print quality, large build area, v-slot 2020 extrusions.
Cons: Kit, z-wobble issues (solved with community mods), important features in upgrades.
Notes: Some upgrades like the aluminum bed, upgraded lead screws/metal parts, and e3d v6 hotend are seen as very important to the quality of this printer, and bring the price up to $550. Still in this price range, but at the upper end instead. Upgrades are worthwhile.
BUILD AREA: 4.7 x 2.75 x 7.9 in (120 x 70 x 200 mm)
Pros: Affordable SLA printer
Cons: Wanhao QC with this printer has been poor, issues with print quality/reliability
Notes: Cheap Monoprice rebrand of the Wanhao D7 was supposed to come out in April, but was delayed. Maybe releasing this month?

$600-$1000

BUILD AREA: 9.84 x 8.3 x 8 in (250 x 210 x 200 cm)
Pros: Strong community, great customer service, high-quality components, autoleveling, multi-material upgrade available, amazing print quality, easy interface
Cons: Inconsistent autoleveling (varies), issues with warped beds, large lead time of almost 2 months, customer support can be slow (though support chat is responsive), extremely loud bearings even on silent mode, kit (though easiest kit out there).
Notes: For the price, this is still one of the best, if not the best, printer you could hope to buy. The lead times are borderline unacceptable at this point, however. Prusa is moving into a new space, hopefully to let them ramp up production to meet demand. We'll see if that lowers the lead time.
BUILD AREA: 300 mm (11.8 in) diameter, with 445 mm (17.5 in) z-height.
Pros: High quality components, massive build area, all-metal frame and corners, Duet WiFi controller, very quiet, FSR autoleveling, excelling print quality, great customer support.
Cons: Kit with a complicated build compared to the mk2, which includes soldering and crimping. Magball arms can pop out during printer failures (though uncommon), small community.
Notes: A new build guide was released for the D300VS, which alleviates my (and most peoples') biggest issue with the printer, which was the scattered build instructions. New guide is fantastic. I consider this printer the mk2 of deltas, and with the updated guide, the barrier to entry is significantly reduced.
BUILD AREA: 265 mm (10.4 in) diameter, with 400 mm (15.75 in) z-height.
Pros: Straightforward build (though more complicated than mk2) though it does include soldering, large print volume, upgradeable, decent print quality, autoleveling, great customer support.
Cons: Stock fan configuration bad (but can be fixed via printed upgrades), buggy autoleveling (updates are improving this but still inconsistent), limited by 8-bit RAMBo controller, not all-metal frame, though close.
Notes: I've soured on this printer in the last few months. The 8-bit RAMBo controller is limiting for deltas, and has a hard time handling the delta kinematics, which limits the speed you can print at, and can cause quality issues. If you want super high quality prints with autoleveling, you can get a mk2 for much cheaper. If you want high quality and a huge build volume, and are willing to pay the V3 price, you can just get the D300VS which comes with significantly higher quality parts and a 32-bit controller for the same price. There's just not a place for this printer anymore. They made a mistake sticking with the RAMBo.
BUILD AREA: 7.88 x 7.88 x 7.88 in (200 x 200 x 200 mm)
Pros: Built-in enclosure, all-metal frame, comes pre-built, platform fixed in x and y-axis
Cons: Typical Wanhao quality-control issues. Failed motherboards, bent rods, failed cooling fans. Stock cooling system is poor (but can be fixed through printed upgrades).
Notes: Some rumors this printer might be discontinued? Either way, you'll be able to find parts via Wanhao, since it's just a rebrand, and Wanhao will continue selling them.
BUILD AREA: 11 x 12 x 13.5 in (280 x 305 x 343 mm)
Pros: Extremely rigid frame, amazing customer support, strong community, large print area
Cons: Kit, need to provide your own glass for bed and insulation for heated bed.
Notes: The deluxe version of this printer almost nears $1k, but includes autoleveling, metal replacement parts, etc. However, the non-deluxe version is still one of the most complete kits out there for the price.

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References

  1. https://www.reddit.com/r/3Dprinting/comments/68wuud/3d_printing_purchase_recommendations_what_printer/dhd71zq/