The Prusa i3 MK2 is an excellent 3D printer for people who want to start with 3D printing. It is most suited towards beginners as it is very user-friendly, but at the same time offers some advanced features as well. All in all, the Prusa i3 MK2 is an excellent choice for anyone looking to get into 3D printing. Yes, it has a higher upfront cost than some other 3D printers, but the time it will save you during setup and before printing is incalculable. Plus, with such a vast array of supported materials, you have unlimited potential for growth.
Today, we’re going to review a 3D printer that’s often imitated yet never surpassed. We’re talking, of course, about the Prusa i3 MK2. Now, before we begin, you should be aware that Prusa’s website is the only legitimate vendor of this product so don’t buy it from any other marketplace.
Is this an entry-level printer? In some ways, yes, but the price tag (around $600) would suggest otherwise. That’s pretty pricey, and the unit doesn’t even come assembled, although a pre-built version is available for an extra $200. So what makes this 3D printer so highly recommended?
But before we continue, now is probably the time to tell you that we were only joking with the title. This 3D printer is worth your money!
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A Host Of Advanced Features
Simply, the i3 MK2 takes the hassle out of setting up a print. It comes with a heated bed and cold corner compensation, but what does this mean? Basically, filament tends to stick to cold surfaces and this feature ensures the bed remains at a constant temperature all over. That’s not bad, but there’s more.
Before you can even begin printing, you have to calibrate the nozzle. This model comes with automatic calibration tools, saving you a lot of time. Even if it’s not quite perfect, you can fine tune things like the Z-step distance to get it exactly right.
Most other 3D printers require lots of manual tweaking to get the print surface completely flat but this one actually does it for you. It even has an open build area that’s larger than most, with 10,500cm3 of space to play with.
The Prusa i3 MK2 features a built-in LCD display and SD card, controller. An 8GB SD card is also included to get you started but if you’re a heavy user, you’ll likely want to upgrade this in the future. It also uses cutting edge modern technology to stay as quiet as possible during the printing process – usually around 50dB, which is comparable to the noise from moderate rainfall.
Because this printer is open source, you can use whatever hardware or software you like. A 0.4mm nozzle is included but can be changed out. This is suitable for standard 1.75mm filament – speaking of which, you’re spoiled for choice here.
The MK2 can print with the usual suspects: PLA, ABS, and PET, but also supports HIPS, Flex PP, Ninjaflex, Laywood, Laybrick, nylon, Bamboofill, Bronzefill, ASA, T-Glase, carbon fiber, and polycarbonate filaments. That’s outstandingly versatile, even for a printer of this price. A single 2lb spool of silver PLA is included so you can get started as soon as possible.
We’ve all seen them: instructions that look like they’ve been translated into Chinese and back. They’re almost useless and unfortunately, all too common. In contrast, Prusa provides a thick instruction booklet with illustrated, concise directions on how to set up and configure your new 3D printer.
Even if you find yourself struggling, you can make use of their 24/7 customer service. Buyers have the option to call, email, or use the live chat to contact someone qualified to help out. The only challenge is that if you don’t buy the pre-built version, your warranty only covers individual parts, not the unit as a whole.
All in all, the Prusa i3 MK2 is an excellent choice for anyone looking to get into 3D printing. Yes, it has a higher upfront cost than some other 3D printers, but the time it will save you during setup and before printing is incalculable. Plus, with such a vast array of supported materials, you have unlimited potential for growth.