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  1. #1

    Is it worth getting more than the bare minimum for a 3d printer?

    Hey all, i'm looking to get a 3d printer, a friend has suggested to just get the cheapest ender 3 i can find which is around 250 aud
    Just wondering, the creality site has countless ender 3's which i can't distinguish between at all
    i don't really have a hard budget, i'm willing to spend up to like 700 if the additional features are worth it

    Just wondering, should i just get the basic ender 3, or are there features that you consider essential/definite worth paying for

  2. #2
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    May 2020
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    636
    If you can buy something with a budget of up to 700, there are numerous better alternatives with more desireable features.

    Look for features such as corexy and being fully enclosed.

    Hot end and bed temperatures will determine whether you can print a bigger variety of filament types.

    Build volume is very important if you think you will want to print anything more useful than amusing widjets.

  3. #3
    Student
    Join Date
    May 2024
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    Texas
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    Add dbhosttexas on Thingiverse
    My experience is only with low end equipment here, but I am going to give you my input here...I have the Voxelab Aquila, basically the same thing as the Creality Ender 3 V2 with some minor engineering changes / upgrades that make assembling it a touch easier. That's it. It is a good little printer for what it is, but it left me wanting. Mostly for print volume as the print bed area is only 235x235 and gantry max height is 250.So I bought a second printer that had the added features I wanted. Those were.MUCH larger print volume. 400x400x400, I am making restoration parts for an old RV so I am needing something that will print sizes I need without them being multiple pieces.Auto Levelling. Manual leveling works, but it is a pain in the tail. Auto leveling takes the guess work out of it. My second machine is another Voxelab in the Aquila series, this time an Aquila X3 Max.I paid $299.00 U.S.D. for my Aquila X3 Max or approximately $454.00 A.U.D. Well within your budget.This printer is NOT without issues though. It is on the cheaper side of 3D printers esepcially with this feature set. And there is one MFG issue with the auto level sensor I am trying to get sorted with the MFG. Apparently it is a known issue with other owners of not just the Max, but all X3 models. They install the sensor with no slack in the wire, and the tension causes connection issues in the sensor... I am willing to learn and tinker though...For what it is worth, my Aquila being well out of warranty now is going to get some upgrades. #1. Creality all metal extruder upper end. The OE plastic pieces are known weak points, and breakage prone, on both the Creality Ender3 models as well as the Voxelab Aquila models.#2. Creality / Capricorn premium bowden tube. I did this to support printing with PETG which I still haven't perfected.#3. Replace the noisy factory fans with WinSinn quiet fans. The hot end and mainboard take 30mm and the power supply takes a 40mm. The hot end fan on the original Aquila is in the process of failing.#4. PEI build sheet / plate. My original glass one got damaged so I replaced it with this. The Aquila X3 Max comes factory with one.#5. 3D Touch auto level sensor. Chinese knockoff of the BL Touch auto level sensor. This makes leveling MUCH easier. The kits include mounts for the Creality printers, I had to print my own bracket. Still need to get the screws for it...At some point in the future IF I can find firmware to support the temperatures I might upgrade to a Creality Spider v3 Pro hotend. But for now the OE hotend works for me.Once the Aquila X3 Max is out of warranty, upgrades 1 2 and 3 are going on it as well...You can print an awful lot of stuff on the bottom of the line printer, the more expensive models will have features that will make your life easier and expand the materials you can work with. The questions are, how much do you want to pay? What materials do you want to print with? Are you willing to do some upgrades down the line to improve upon your machine when you want to expand a bit?

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