The Ender 3 V2 looks better than the Ender 3 and it certainly costs more, but is it worth the price or should you stick to the original? We take a look at the Ender 3 V2’s upgrades and general performance in today’s review to determine if this is a notable update to the popular Ender 3.
In-Depth Ender 3 V2 3D Printer Review
Ender 3 V2 Review Basics
On paper, the basic specs of this machine are almost identical to the Ender 3. The Ender 3 V2 offers up to 100-micron accuracy in your choice of ABS, PLA, PETG or TPU. Maximum build volume is also identical, measuring 8.6” x 8.6” x 9.8” though the aluminum build plate has been replaced with a textured glass build plate. This upgrade is intended to improve adhesion and make removing your models easier. It also resists wear and warping better than aluminum plates.
The Ender 3 V2 also enjoys the same all-metal frame of its predecessor. That includes the same microSD and USB connectivity options. The Ender 3 V2 even uses a similar turn-knob style interface as the Ender 3, though the display has been slightly updated.
Important hardware upgrades include an improved motherboard, which was apparently developed inhouse, as well as a Meanwell PSU. The motherboard upgrade is another welcome feature which allows for much quieter motor noise compared to the Ender 3. This 32-bit motherboard also assures that future firmware updates will keep your machine relevant for years to come.
Ender 3 V2 Review Pros
The Ender 3 V2 includes some important hardware upgrades that every user will want. This includes the textured glass print bed and the Meanwell PSU. While the 32-bit motherboard is a great new feature, it’s now available in new Ender 3 units so it’s not exclusive to the V2. Still, the print bed and PSU, in addition to an updated user interface, do add significant value to the printer. These are upgrades most users would make themselves so you save some time and money here.
The Ender 3 V2 may seem expensive compared to the Ender 3 or even the Ender 3 Pro. While it’s true that the V2 is about $80 more than its predecessor, this printer remains relatively affordable for what it provides. In addition to the upgrades mentioned above, the Ender 3 V2 includes some other handy features like an XY-belt tensioner
Easy Assembly and Tons of Support
The Creality and Ender 3 community is huge online. Any support you need, from assembly instructions to troubleshooting tips are easy to find with a simple Google search. There are also plenty of printable upgrades available for this machine as well as hardware and precision tuning suggestions. All this doesn’t even count Creality’s own eager support staff.
Ender 3 V2 Review Cons
While we think the V2’s hardware upgrades are substantial, they missed the mark with the cheap bowden extruder setup. Like the original Ender 3, the V2’s extruder and hotend aren’t designed for the longevity. If you intend to print with more than PLA, or to run this printer long and often, you want to upgrade to a direct drive extruder and maybe invest in an all-metal hotend. At the very least, users commonly replace the stock PTFE tubing.
These aren’t the only cheap components to be found on the Ender 3 V2. Thankfully, you can get big improvements by printing some upgrade pieces.
Ender 3 V2 Review Verdict
Creality have successfully updated their hugely successful Ender 3 line. The Ender 3 V2 truly deserves to be their new base model for this affordable series. It’s not the best 3D printer on the market, but it’s not supposed to be. Instead, the Ender 3 V2 serves as a strong foundation for beginners to learn and veterans to build upon. Tinker and mod this 3D printer to your needs… or don’t! It works fine out of the box and almost anyone can build it in about 30-minutes.
One of the best things about this 3D printer has nothing to do with the machine at all. It’s the huge community of 3D printing enthusiasts surrounding the Ender series that brings the most value. Troubleshooting help, slicer profiles, and printable upgrades all abound for this 3D printer. If you’re looking for a budget 3D printer with tons of potential and oodles of support, the Ender 3 V2 is a great choice.