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Creality Ender 5 3D Printer Review

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Creality Ender 5 3D Printer Review

4.4

Features

5.0/5

Quality

4.5/5

Warranty

4.0/5

Price

4.0/5

Pros

  • Rigid construction
  • Relatively easy to use and maintain
  • Great quality prints on an affordable machine
  • Huge 220x220x300 mm build volume
  • Many convenient features

Cons

  • Digital display can be cumbersome
  • Uses outdated Mini USB connector

Everyone needs a 3D printer, right? Not really, but if you’re interested in 3D printing and are prepared to do a lot of learning, you may feel like getting one. Get this one.

Features/Specs

From Creality:

  • Upgraded Silent Mainboard V4.2.2: Ender 5 Pro 3d printer comes with upgraded V4.2.2 silent Mainboard with TMC2208 drivers, allowing for quieter and more precise printing performance.
  • Metal Extruder Kit: Ender 5 Pro adopts Creality metal extruder which has better stronger pressure to pushing filament into printer nozzle, improving the printer’s performance.
  • Capricorn Premium XS Bowden Tubing: Imported Capricorn blue tube with high temperature resistant makes feeding smoother and ensure great printing texture.
  • Brand Power Supply: Built-in brand power supply, heat up the hot bed to 110℃ in 5 minutes.
  • Semi-Assembled Kits: Ender 5 Pro comes with several partially assembled kits, very easy to assemble and allow you to learn about the basic construction of 3D printer. OFFICIAL SERVICES: Comgrow team provides you lifetime technical assistance and 24 hours professional customer service.

My Experience

My first 3D printer was a “RigidBot” from a Kickstarter, but the company ended up going bankrupt. It was a sturdy printer but had problems and required a lot of maintenance, but I was able to keep it going for like 4 years. Eventually it failed — I was unclogging it once and the threaded aluminum block stripped out, and also the printer would stop printing in the middle of the print. I sold it to a local strange man for parts/repair.

I found and bought a Creality Ender 5 printer for $250 from a different local strange man and I’m glad I did. What drew me to both of these printers is the rigid cubic metal frame — 3D printers vibrate as they have several motors all working at once and a relatively heavy print head moving around, and I believe a metal frame is essential to the printer’s physical reliability, as a cheaper printer with a wood frame could weaken over time with these moving parts. The cheaper Ender 3 has a T-shaped body instead of a cubic frame. I prefer the cubic frame for the additional reinforcement.

Improvements Over Time

This printer has been upgraded from what it used to be and it has some great improvements. The Capricorn Bowden tubing is very high-quality and I haven’t experienced any clogs with it, even after several filament changes. The metal extruder provides extra force through the Bowden tube, which definitely helps with a Bowden extrusion system. (If you have no idea what I’m talking about, here’s a good article). Assembly is easy and straightforward.

I’m using the BLtouch auto leveling system which definitely takes some of the bed leveling setup work out of it. Luckily for me, the strange man had already installed it. Without it, there is a little more work to do to make sure the bed is level, but the Ender 5 has large bed leveling knobs to help with this process.

3D Printing Filaments

I’ve used PLA, ABS, and PETG with this printer and have had no problems with any when the nozzle and hotbed are heated to the correct temperatures. For 3D printing, which can be as much of a chore as it is fun, this is saying a lot. I mostly print at 0.3 mm layer height but have gotten beautiful results with 0.1 mm layers. I’ve printed vacuum hose adapters, household items, vases, art models, chip clips, and invention prototypes on this printer with no issues. I was even able to print a 90-degree overhang with PETG at the perfect temperature. Also, check out some of my models on Thingiverse.

I’ve used PLA, TPU, ABS, and PETG throughout my 3D printing experience. For almost all prints I recommend PLA and PETG. This is because ABS smells bad as it releases more toxic fumes than the other types. You should ventilate and/or use an air purifier in the room where you’re printing.

PLA is okay for applications where appearance is most important — it is brittle and less strong than PETG. PLA doesn’t required a heated bed and PETG normally does. PETG is more tolerant of heat and outdoor applications. Other than these things, these filaments are pretty similar. PLA has been marketed as biodegradable, but real-life tests show that does not biodegrade at home. For more information, check out my article on 3D printing sustainability.

Overall, I recommend GreenGate3D 100% recycled PETG filaments for starting out.

Does Ted Approve?

Whether you’ve done a lot of 3D printing like me or none at all, this printer is a great value for the price with many great features and upgradability. Replacement parts are cheap and there is great product support and a thriving community.

Where To Buy

Other Options

  • Cheaper: the Ender 3 Pro offers many of the same benefits at about half the price, though it has smaller print volume, standard Bowden tubing, a plastic extruder, and an economical T-shaped frame (less structural support). If you want to get started in 3D printing at a lower price point, this is the way to go.

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