Cosplay culture is now more popular than ever. With the new recent successes of superhero films and online games, comic book culture and pop culture are now inextricably linked.
Each year, fans try to out duel themselves to produce the best costumes. These creations have moved past ordinary fabric designs to fully functional prototypes like this Iron Man costume.
3D printing has changed the cosplay game. Before, cosplayers used to make their models with laborious methods like foam casting and CNC machining. Now, with 3D printers, Cosplayers can create full costumes with little stress.
You may have seen some videos of people sporting 3D printed cosplay outfits, armors, sword, axes, and all sorts of other awesome accessories.
To keep up with the crowd and create your own spectacular costumes, you have to step up your game. To help you with that, I’ve put together some of the best 3D printers for creating Cosplay models, props and armor.
If you are looking for the best 3D printer for items like cosplay helmets, Iron Man suits, lightsabers, Mandalorian armor, Star Wars helmets and armor, action figure accessories, or even statues and busts, this list will do you justice.
Whether you’re a beginner new to cosplay or you’re a veteran looking to upgrade, there’s something for you on this list. So, let’s dive headfirst into seven of the best 3D printers for printing Cosplay models.
The Creality Ender 3 is the gold standard when it comes to affordable 3D printers. Its modularity and affordability have won it several fans around the world. It’s great for Cosplayers who are just starting and don’t have the money for an expensive brand.
Let’s look into some of the key features and specs of this V2 3D printer iteration.
Features of the Ender 3 V2
- Open Build Space
- Carborundum Glass Platform
- High-Quality Meanwell Power Supply
- 3-Inch LCD Color Screen
- XY-Axis Tensioners
- Built-In Storage Compartment
- New Silent Motherboard
- Fully Upgraded Hotend & Fan Duct
- Smart Filament Run Out Detection
- Effortless Filament Feeding
- Print Resume Capabilities
- Quick-Heating Hot Bed
Specifications of the Ender 3 V2
- Build Volume: 220 x 220 x 250mm
- Maximum Printing Speed: 180mm/s
- Layer Height/Print Resolution: 0.1mm
- Maximum Extruder Temperature: 255°C
- Maximum Bed Temperature: 100°C
- Filament Diameter: 1.75mm
- Nozzle Diameter: 0.4mm
- Extruder: Single
- Connectivity: MicroSD Card, USB.
- Bed Levelling: Manual
- Build Area: Open
- Compatible Printing Materials: PLA, TPU, PETG
The Ender 3 V2 (Amazon) comes with a compact open build space design. It packs all its electronics and wiring into an Aluminum base that also contains a storage compartment.
Moving up, two large Aluminum extrusions rise from the base to support the extruder array. On the extrusions, we have a set of dual guide rails installed to give the extruder and the hotend maximum stability and precision.
Nestled just close to the base is a 4.3-inch LCD color screen equipped with a scroll wheel for interacting with the printer. The Ender 3 also has both USB and MicroSD card connections for sending prints to the printer.
The Ender 3 V2 comes with a lot of firmware improvements such as the print resume function. The motherboard also undergoes an upgrade to the 32-bit variant.
At the center of it all, we have a textured glass print bed. The print bed is heated up by a Meanwell PSU and can achieve temperatures of up to 100°C in short times.
With this, you can make high-strength models and props out of materials like PETG without much stress.
For printing, the Ender 3 V2 retains its original single hotend fed by a Bowden extruder. The stock hotend is made of brass and can handle some of the more high-temperature materials reasonably well.
User Experience of the Ender 3 V2
If you are averse to a little bit of DIY, then beware of this printer. It comes disassembled in the box, so you’ll need to put in a bit of work to set it up. But don’t worry, it should be a breeze if you follow the steps and the community guidelines.
Upon powering up the printer, you’ll need to load in the filament and level the bed manually. Doing both of them is easier than it sounds thanks to the new quality touches to the Ender 3 V2 like the filament loader.
The friendly new UI makes interacting with the printer a breeze, but the scroll wheel can take quite a bit of getting used to. Apart from that, all the new firmware features work appropriately.
The printer even supports the free Open-source slicer Cura for slicing prints.
The print bed works as well as advertised. There is no trouble at all getting prints of the bed. It can be a little small for printing some of the larger Cosplay props, but you can always break them up and print individually.
When it comes to the extruder and the hotend, it can handle all types of filament, even some advanced ones. It produces great quality prints with materials like PLA and PETG with great succession and speed.
This means as long as you have the filaments, you can print out your Cosplay costume in blindingly fast times.
Also, as a plus, printing operation on the Ender 3 V2 is notably quiet. Thanks to its new motherboard, you’ll barely hear any noise from the printer during operation.
Pros of the Creality Ender 3 V2
- Easy to use for beginners, giving out high performance and much enjoyment
- Relatively cheap and great value for money
- Great support community.
- Design and structure look very aesthetically pleasing
- High precision printing
- 5 minutes to heat up
- The all-metal body gives stability and durability
- Easy to assemble and maintain
- The power supply is integrated underneath the build-plate unlike the Ender 3
- It is modular and easy to customize
Cons of the Creality Ender 3 V2
- A bit difficult to assemble
- Open build space is not ideal for minors
- Only 1 motor on the Z-axis
- Glass beds do tend to be heavier, so it may lead to ringing in prints
- No touchscreen interface like some other modern printers
As a beginner or an intermediate 3D hobbyist, you can’t go wrong choosing the Ender 3 V2. It is very easy on beginners and when it’s time to grow, you can always modify it to suit you.
Get yourself the Ender 3 V2 from Amazon for your cosplay 3D printing.
The Photon Mono X is Anycubic’s supersize addition to the budget SLA market. Coming with a large build volume and game-changing printing capabilities, this printer is a machine for serious individuals.
Let’s have a look at what’s under the hood.
Features of the Anycubic Photon Mono X
- 9″ 4K Monochrome LCD
- New Upgraded LED Array
- UV Cooling System
- Dual Linear Z-Axis
- Wi-Fi Functionality – App Remote Control
- Large Build Size
- High-Quality Power Supply
- Sanded Aluminum Build Plate
- Fast Printing Speed
- 8x Anti-Aliasing
- 5″ HD Full-Color Touch Screen
- Sturdy Resin Vat
Specifications of the Anycubic Photon Mono X
- Build Volume: 192 x 120 x 245mm
- Layer Resolution: 0.01-0.15mm
- Operation: 5-Inch Touch Screen
- Software: Anycubic Photon Workshop
- Connectivity: USB, Wi-Fi
- Technology: LCD-Based SLA
- Light Source: 405nm Wavelength
- XY Resolution: 0.05mm, 3840 x 2400 (4K)
- Z Axis Resolution: 0.01mm
- Maximum Printing Speed: 60mm/h
- Rated Power: 120W
- Printer Size: 270 x 290 x 475mm
- Net Weight: 75kg
The design of the Anycubic Mono X is eye-catching and aesthetically pleasing. It comprises a black metal base housing the resin vat and the UV light source.
The base and the build space are covered by a yellow acrylic shell that has become the brand’s signature.
Also, on the base, we have a 3.5inch touchscreen for interfacing with the printer. For connectivity, the printer comes with a USB A port and a Wi-fi antenna.
The Wi-fi connection comes with a caveat though, it can’t be used to transfer files. You can only use it to monitor prints remotely with the Anycubic app.
There are two main software programs that you can use for slicing your prints on the Photon X. They are Anycubic Workshop and the Lychee slicer. The selection is a little limited, but there is rumored support for other slicers coming soon.
Going to the build space, we have a wide sanded aluminum plate mounted on a dual Z-axis rail with an anti-backlash nut. This configuration makes it easier to print at the Z-axis resolution of 10 microns with greater stability.
As a result, cosplay models and props come out with barely visible layers.
Moving lower, we have the real star of the show, The 4K monochrome LCD screen. With this screen, print times are three times faster than normal SLA printers.
Even with the large build volume of the photon X, you can still print highly detailed Cosplay armors in a fraction of the time that it will take you to do it with larger models. It is possible because of the high resolution of the 4k screen.
User Experience of the Anycubic Photon Mono X
The Mono X is easy to install like most SLA printers. It comes almost fully assembled in the box. All you have to do is attach the build plate, screw the Wi-fi antennae in and plug it in.
Leveling the print bed is also very easy. There is no automatic bed leveling, but you can level it within minutes with the paper method aided by the software.
The slicing software-Photon Workshop- is competent, and it does a decent job. However, you cannot help feeling that users can benefit more from a third-party slicer.
I’d recommend using Lychee Slicer for your file preparation needs since it’s really easy to use.
The Mono X gets top marks for the friendly UI on its touch screen which makes it easy to use. Also, its USB connection works well for moving data to the printer.
However, you cannot transfer print files using the Wi-Fi connection. You can only use it with the app to monitor prints remotely.
Thanks to the two giant quiet fans and the stepper motors, printing is quiet on the Mono X. You can leave it in the room and go about your business without noticing it.
When it comes to print quality, the Mono X smashes all expectations. It produces superb-looking Cosplay models in just a short period. The large build volume also comes in handy when creating life-size models as it reduces print times.
Pros of the Anycubic Photon Mono X
- You can get printing really quickly, all within 5 minutes since it’s mostly pre-assembled
- It’s really easy to operate, with simple touchscreen settings to get through
- The Wi-Fi monitoring app is great for checking on the progress and even changing settings if desired
- Has a very large build volume for a resin 3D printer
- Cures full layers at once, resulting in quicker printing
- Professional looking and has a sleek design
- Simple leveling system which stays sturdy
- Amazing stability and precise movements that lead to almost invisible layer lines in 3D prints
- Ergonomic vat design has a dented edge for easier pouring
- Build plate adhesion works well
- Produces amazing resin 3D prints consistently
- Growing Facebook Community with plenty of helpful tips, advice, and troubleshooting
Cons of the Anycubic Photon Mono X
- Only recognizes .pwmx files so you may be limited in your slicer choice – slicers have recently started accepting this file type.
- The acrylic cover doesn’t sit in place too well and can move easily
- The touchscreen is a little flimsy
- Fairly pricey compared to other resin 3D printers
- Anycubic doesn’t have the best customer service track record
The Anycubic Mono X is a great large volume printer. It can be a little pricey for some, but it more than delivers on the quality that is expected with its price.
You can get yourself the Anycubic Photon Mono X from Amazon.
The CR-10 is a large volume 3D printer from budget kings Creality. It provides that extra printing space and some extra premium capabilities to Cosplayers on a tight budget.
Features of the Creality CR-10 V3
- Direct Titan Drive
- Dual Port Cooling Fan
- TMC2208 Ultra-Silent Motherboard
- Filament Breakage Sensor
- Resume Printing Sensor
- 350W Branded Power Supply
- BL-Touch Supported
- UI Navigation
Specifications of the Creality CR-10 V3
- Build Volume: 300 x 300 x 400mm
- Feeder System: Direct Drive
- Extruder Type: Single Nozzle
- Nozzle Size: 0.4mm
- Hot End Temperature: 260°C
- Heated Bed Temperature: 100°C
- Print Bed Material: Carborundum Glass Platform
- Frame: Metal
- Bed Leveling: Automatic optional
- Connectivity: SD card
- Print Recovery: Yes
- Filament Sensor: Yes
The CR-10 V3 comes with the same minimalistic design we’ve come to associate with the brand over the years. It is built with a simple metal frame with an external control brick housing the power supply and other electronics.
You’ll find two cross metal braces added on each side to stabilize the extruder. Large printers can experience Z-axis wobble near their tops, the cross braces eliminate that in the CR-10.
This 3D printer comes with an LCD screen and a control wheel for interacting with the printer. It also offers only an SD card option for transferring print files.
Coming to the print bed, we have a textured glass heated build plate supplied by a 350W power supply. You should have no problems printing high-temperature filaments with this bed, being rated at 100°C.
On top of this, the print bed is huge!
You can fit life-sized models like for example a full-scale Model of Mjölnir (Thor’s Hammer) on its spacious surface at once. You can also break down complex props and print them spread out.
One of the notable changes to this printer’s setup is the new extruder which is a lovely Direct Drive Titan Extruder which I can appreciate from Creality.
This is huge news because it means users can create their Cosplay props from a wider range of materials at faster speeds.
User Experience of the Creality CR-10 V3
The CR-10 V3 is fairly easy to assemble. Almost all the important parts are already pre-assembled. All you have to do is tighten a few bolts, load the filament, and level the print bed.
There is no automatic bed leveling straight out of the box for the V3. However, Creality did leave space for a BL touch sensor in case users want to upgrade.
On the control panel, we encounter one of the little flaws in this machine. The control panel LCD is dull and hard to use. Also, you’ll be better off installing Cura than using the Creality workshop software provided.
Apart from that, all the other firmware features work perfectly as intended. The filament runout and print resume features are lifesavers on long prints. And it also comes with thermal protection.
During actual printing, the new silent stepper motors make printing a quiet breezy experience. The print bed also performs well and heats up evenly across its large build volume.
The Titan extruder also produces good quality models with minimal fuss. It lives up to its reputation and no layer shifting or stringing is observed even at the top of the build volume.
Pros of the Creality CR-10 V3
- Easy to assembly and operate
- Quick heating for faster printing
- Parts pop of the print bed after cooling
- Great customer service with Comgrow (Amazon seller)
- Amazing value compared to other 3D printers out there
Cons of the Creality CR-10 V3
- Not any significant cons!
The Creality CR-10 V3 is a large volume workhorse of a printer, simple. It might have some outdated features for today’s market, but it still does its primary job consistently well.
You can find the Creality CR-10 V3 on Amazon to create some astonishing cosplay models that can impress plenty.
The Ender 5 plus is one of the newest additions to the long-running popular Ender series. In this version, Creality brings even an even larger build space coupled with several other new touches to dominate the mid-range market.
Features of the Creality Ender 5 Plus
- Large Build Volume
- BL Touch Pre-Installed
- Filament Run-out Sensor
- Resume Printing Function
- Dual Z-Axis
- Inch Touch Screen
- Removable Tempered Glass Plates
- Branded Power Supply
Specifications of the Creality Ender 5 Plus
- Build Volume: 350 x 350 x 400mm
- Display: 4.3-Inch display
- Print Accuracy: ±0.1mm
- Nozzle Temperature: ≤ 260℃
- Hot Bed Temperature: ≤ 110℃
- File Formats: STL, OBJ
- Printing Materials: PLA, ABS
- Machine Size: 632 x 666 x 619mm
- Gross Weight: 23.8 KG
- Net Weight: 18.2 KG
The first noticeable feature of the Ender 5 Plus (Amazon) its large build volume. The build volume is located in the middle of a cubic aluminum frame. Another unconventional touch for the printer is its movable print bed.
Its print bed is free to move up and down the Z-axis and the hotend only moves in the X, Y coordinate system. The tempered glass on the print bed is heated by a powerful 460W power supply.
At the base of the aluminum frame is the control brick. The control brick is a slick structure with a 4.5-inch touchscreen mounted on it for interfacing with the printer. The printer also offers an SD card and an online interface for sending prints.
For software, the users can use the popular Cura application for slicing and preparing their 3D models. Also, it comes with several nice firmware touches like a print resume function and a filament runout sector.
Going back to the print bed, the print bed on the Ender 5 Plus is quite large. The rapid heating bed and the large print volume make it possible to print quite a lot of props at once on the Ender 5 Plus.
The hotend on the other hand is nothing really special. It consists of a single hotend fed with a Bowden tube extruder.
It produces decent print quality for the price. But for a better print experience, users can swap out to a more capable all-metal extruder.
User Experience of the Creality Ender 5 Plus
Unboxing and assembling the Ender 5 plus is relatively easy. Most of the parts come pre-assembled so, putting them together can be accomplished in a relatively short time.
The 5 plus breaks from the norm by including a bed leveling sensor for automatic bed leveling. However, this does not work well for all users. The positioning of the sensor on the extruder coupled with the large print bed and firmware issues make this difficult.
Coming to the software, the UI works well and is interactive. Also, the firmware functions work well to provide a seamless printing experience.
The print bed is a mammoth fixture, and it doesn’t disappoint. The bed heats up evenly, so you can spread out your cosplay models and creations all over it without experiencing warping.
Also, its stability is guaranteed by the two Z-axis lead screws that help guide it.
The lead screws are not so perfect, though. Although they stabilize the print bed well, they can be noisy during printing operations. A good way to reduce the noise is to try some lubrication.
Finally, we get to the hotend. The hotend and the extruder are somewhat of a letdown. They produce okay quality cosplay models rapidly, but if you want the best experience, you should consider upgrading.
Pros of the Creality Ender 5 Plus
- The dual Z-axis rods provide great stability
- Prints reliably and with good quality
- Has great cable management
- Touch display makes for easy operation
- Can be assembled in just 10 minutes
- Very popular among customers, especially liked for the build volume
Cons of the Creality Ender 5 Plus
- Has the non-silent mainboard meaning the 3D printer is loud but can be upgraded
- Fans are also loud
- Really heavy 3D printer
- Some people have complained about the plastic extruder not being strong enough
Although the Ender 5 Plus needs a bit of work to achieve that great print quality, it is still a good printer. The value it provides with its large build volume is just too good to pass up.
You can find the Ender 5 Plus on Amazon for your 3D printing needs.
The Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4 is another excellent budget, large-volume printer on the market. It brings a polished look and plenty of premium features for its price point.
Features of the Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4
- Rapid Heating Ceramic Glass Print Bed
- Direct Drive Extruder System
- Large Build Volume
- Print Resume Capability After a Power Outage
- Ultra-Quiet Stepper Motor
- Filament Detector Sensor
- LCD-Color Touch Screen
- Safe and Secure, Quality Packaging
- Synchronized Dual Z-Axis System
Specifications of the Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4
- Build Volume: 300 x 300 x 400mm
- Printing Speed: 150mm/s
- Layer Height/Print Resolution: 0.1mm
- Maximum Extruder Temperature: 265°C
- Maximum Bed Temperature: 130°C
- Filament Diameter: 1.75mm
- Nozzle Diameter: 0.4mm
- Extruder: Single
- Control Board: MKS Gen L
- Nozzle Type: Volcano
- Connectivity: USB A, MicroSD card
- Bed Levelling: Manual
- Build Area: Open
- Compatible Printing Materials: PLA / ABS / TPU / Flexible materials
The Sidewinder X1 V4 (Amazon) has a beautiful well-designed structure. It starts with a sleek sturdy metal base for housing the power supply and the electronics.
The structure then builds up into a pair of stamped steel extrusions for holding up the extruder assembly.
Also, on the base, we have an LCD touch screen for interfacing with the printer. For printing and connecting with the printer, Artillery includes a USB A and SD card support.
On the firmware side, there are also numerous premium features. These features include the print resume function, the ultra-quiet stepper driver motors, and the filament run-out sensor.
Going to the heart of the build space, we have a large ceramic glass build plate. This glass plate can rapidly reach temperatures of up to 130°C. What this means for you is that you can print high-strength durable cosplay props with materials like ABS and PETG.
Not to be outdone, the extruder assembly sports a Titan-style hotend with a volcano heat block. This combination has a long melt zone and a high flow rate.
This means you’ll be able to use a variety of materials like TPU and PLA in creating your Cosplay models.
Also, the high flow rate means that prints will get done in record times.
User Experience of the Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4
The Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4 comes 95% pre-assembled in the box, so assembly is very fast. You just have to attach the Gantries to the base and level the print bed.
The Sidewinder X1 V4 comes with manual print bed leveling. However, thanks to software assistance, you can also get this done relatively easily.
The LCD screen mounted on the printer is really easy to use. Its bright punchy colors and responsiveness make it a delight. Other firmware additions like the print resume function also work well.
The large build plate on the Sidewinder is also top-notch. It heats up rapidly, and prints have no problem sticking to or detaching from it.
However, the print bed heats up unevenly, especially at the outer edges. This can be troublesome when printing objects with a large surface area. Also, the wiring on the heating pad is frail, and it can easily lead to electrical faults.
The printing operation of the Sidewinder is quiet. The Titan extruder can also produce great, quality prints consistently with various materials.
However, some users have run into trouble when printing PETG. For some reason, the printer doesn’t so well with the material. There is a fix for it, but you’ll have to adjust the printer’s profile.
Pros of the Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4
- Heated glass build plate
- It supported both USB and MicroSD cards for more choice
- Well-organized bunch of ribbon cables for better organization
- Large build volume
- Quiet printing operation
- Has large leveling knobs for easier leveling
- A smooth and firmly placed print bed gives the bottom of your prints a shiny finish
- Fast heating of the heated bed
- Very quiet operation in the steppers
- Easy to assemble
- A helpful community that will guide you through any issues that come up
- Prints reliable, consistently, and at a high quality
- Amazing build volume for the price
Cons of the Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4
- Uneven heat distribution on the print bed
- Delicate wiring on the heat pad and extruder
- The spool holder is pretty tricky and hard to adjust
- EEPROM save is not supported by the unit
The Artillery Sidewinder V4 is a great printer all around. Notwithstanding its minor issues, the printer still delivers great quality for the money.
You can get yourself the high rated Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4 from Amazon today.
The Ender 3 Max is the much bigger cousin of the Ender 3 Pro. It retains the same budget price point while adding additional features like a bigger build space to attract more ambitious hobbyists.
Features of the Ender 3 Max
- Immense Build Volume
- Integrated Design
- Carborundum Tempered Glass Print Bed
- Noiseless Motherboard
- Efficient Hot End Kit
- Dual-Fan Cooling System
- Linear Pulley System
- All-Metal Bowden Extruder
- Auto-Resume Function
- Filament Sensor
- Meanwell Power Supply
- Filament Spool Holder
Specifications of the Ender 3 Max
- Build Volume: 300 x 300 x 340mm
- Technology: FDM
- Assembly: Semi-Assembled
- Printer Type: Cartesian
- Product Dimensions: 513 x 563 x 590mm
- Extrusion System: Bowden-Style Extrusion
- Nozzle: Single
- Nozzle Diameter: 0.4mm
- Maximum Hot End Temperature: 260°C
- Maximum Bed Temperature: 100°C
- Print Bed Build: Tempered Glass
- Frame: Aluminum
- Bed Leveling: Manual
- Connectivity: MicroSD Card, USB
- Filament Diameter: 1.75 mm
- Third-Party Filaments: Yes
- Filament Materials: PLA, ABS, PETG, TPU, TPE, Wood-fill
- Weight: 9.5 Kg
The design of the Ender 3 Max (Amazon) is similar to that of others in the Ender 3 line. It has a modular, all-metal open structure with dual aluminum supports for holding up the extruder array.
The printer also has a spool holder at the side for supporting the filament during printing. On the base, we have a small LCD screen with a scroll wheel for navigating the printer’s UI. We also have a Meanwell PSU hidden in a compartment in there.
The Ender 3 Max does not have a proprietary slicer, you can use Ultimaker’s Cura or Simplify3D with it. For connecting to a PC and transferring print files, the Ender 3 Max comes with both an SD card connection and a Micro USB connection.
The huge tempered glass print bed is heated by the Meanwell PSU. It can reach temperatures of up to 100°C. This means that props will detach easily with smooth bottom finishes, and you can also print materials like ABS.
The Ender 3 Max uses a single heat-resistant copper hotend fed by an All-Metal Bowden extruder for printing. The combination of both of them provides fast and accurate printing for all your cosplay models.
User Experience of the Ender 3 Max
The Ender 3 Max is partly assembled in the box. Full assembly is easy and does not take more than thirty minutes from unboxing to first print. It does not come with automatic bed leveling, so you have to level the bed the old-fashioned way.
The control interface on the Ender 3 Max is a bit disappointing. It is a bit dull and unresponsive, especially when compared to other printers on the market.
The print resume function and the filament runout sensor are nice touches that fulfill their function well. They are especially useful on marathon printing sessions.
The large print bed performs admirably. Prints come off well with no warping, and the entire bed is heated evenly. Even materials like ABS come off looking good with this print bed.
Printing operation too is very good and quiet thanks to the new motherboard. The all-metal extruder and the copper hotend also combine to produce stunning Cosplay props & armor in record time.
Pros of the Ender 3 Max
- As always with Creality machines, the Ender 3 Max is highly customizable.
- Users can install a BLTouch themselves for automatic bed calibration.
- The assembly is very easy and will take about 10 minutes even for newcomers.
- Creality has an immense community that’s ready to answer all your queries and questions.
- Comes with clean, compact packaging for extra protection during transit.
- Easily applicable modifications allow the Ender 3 Max to become an excellent machine.
- The print bed provides amazing adhesion for prints and models.
- It’s simple enough and easy to use
- Performs reliably with a consistent workflow
- The build quality is very sturdy
Cons of the Ender 3 Max
- The user interface of the Ender 3 Max feels out of touch and is downright unappealing.
- Bed leveling with this 3D printer is totally manual if you’re not going to upgrade yourself.
- The MicroSD card slot appears a bit out of reach for some.
- Unclear instructions manual, so I would recommend following a video tutorial.
Even though some of its features are outdated, the Ender 3 Max still provides a nice printing experience. If you’re looking for a no-frills workhorse, then this is the printer for you.
You can find the Ender 3 Max on Amazon for a pretty competitive price.
The Elegoo Saturn is a new mid-range SLA printer aimed at professionals. It offers a large build space for printing with, out skimping on print quality and speed.
Features of the Elegoo Saturn
- 9″ 4K Monochrome LCD
- 54 UV LED Matrix Light Source
- HD Print Resolution
- Double Linear Z-Axis Rails
- Large Build Volume
- Color Touch Screen
- Ethernet Port File Transfer
- Long-Lasting Leveling
- Sanded Aluminum Build Plate
Specifications of the Elegoo Saturn
- Build Volume: 192 x 120 x 200mm
- Operation: 3.5-Inch Touch Screen
- Slicer Software: ChiTu DLP Slicer
- Connectivity: USB
- Technology: LCD UV Photo curing
- Light source: UV Integrated LED lights (wavelength 405nm)
- XY Resolution: 0.05mm (3840 x 2400)
- Z Axis Accuracy: 0.00125mm
- Layer Thickness: 0.01 – 0.15mm
- Printing Speed: 30-40mm/h
- Printer Dimensions: 280 x 240 x 446mm
- Power Requirements: 110-240V 50/60Hz 24V4A 96W
- Weight: 22 Lbs (10 Kg)
The Elegoo Saturn is another well-designed printer. It features an all-metal base containing the resin vat and the UV light source, topped off with a red acrylic cover.
On the front of the printer, we have an LCD touchscreen nestled into a recessed groove. The touchscreen is angled upwards for better interactions. The printer also comes with a USB port for transferring prints to it and connectivity.
For slicing and preparing 3D models for printing, the Saturn comes with the ChiTuBox slicer software.
Coming to the build area, we have a wide sanded aluminum build plate mounted on the Z-axis. The build plate moves up and down the Z-axis with the aid of a lead screw supported by two guard rails for maximum stability.
The build plate is wide enough to support larger cosplay prints. Also, with the precise movement of the Z-axis, visible layer lines and layer shifting are not really a problem leading to smooth prints.
Where the main magic happens is the 4K monochrome LCD screen. The new monochrome screen allows for fast printing of cosplay models due to its rapid curing times.
The cosplay props also come out looking sharp and well-detailed, thanks to the 4K screen. It provides a print resolution of 50 microns even with the large volume of the printer.
User Experience of the Elegoo Saturn
Setting up the Elegoo Saturn is very easy. It comes pretty much fully assembled in the box. The only setup activity you need to do is to put together the components, fill up the resin vat and level the bed.
Filling the print vat is easy. The Saturn comes with a pouring guide that makes it simple. There is no automatic bed leveling, but you can level the bed easily using the paper method.
On the software side, the Elegoo is compatible with the standard ChiTuBox software for slicing prints. The software is by all consumer accounts easy to use and feature-rich.
The Saturn is very quiet and cool during printing operations, thanks to the two huge fans at the printer’s rear. However, there is no air filtration technology available for the printer for now.
The Saturn produces great quality prints at rapid speeds. All the features and details in the props and armor come out looking sharp without any evidence of layering.
Pros of the Elegoo Saturn
- Outstanding print quality
- Accelerated printing speed
- Large build volume and resin vat
- High accuracy and precision
- Rapid layer-curing time and faster overall printing times
- Ideal for large prints
- Overall metal build
- USB, Ethernet connectivity for remote printing
- User-friendly interface
- Fuss-free, seamless printing experience
Cons of the Elegoo Saturn
- Cooling fans can be slightly noisy
- No built-in carbon filters
- Possibility of layer shifts on prints
- Build plate adhesion can be a little difficult
- It has been having stock issues, but hopefully, that gets resolved!
The Elegoo Saturn is a great quality printer, no doubt. What even makes it more special is the value it provides for its relatively cheap price. We highly recommend buying this printer, that is if you can find one in stock.
Check out the Elegoo Saturn on Amazon – a great 3D printer for cosplay models, armor, props and more.
Tips for Printing Cosplay Models, Armor, Props & Costumes
Buying a printer is a good step towards getting started in Cosplay 3D printing. However, for a seamless printing experience, there are some tips to follow to avoid issues.
Select the Right Printer
Selecting the right printer is the first thing to do to ensure a successful cosplay printing experience. Before you buy a printer, you should know what your priorities are, so you can choose a printer to match them.
For example, if you need quality detailed models, and size is not a priority, you’ll be better off with an SLA printer. Conversely, if you want to print large models quickly and cheaply, then a large-format FDM printer is your best option.
So, selecting the right printer can make a difference.
Pick an Appropriate Filament For Printing
Often in the 3D printing community, we hear stories of printed props falling apart due to poor material selection. To avoid it, make sure you use the right materials.
Materials like ABS can offer high strength, but they can also be very brittle. Materials like PLA can be cheap and reasonably ductile but, they don’t have the strength of PLA or PETG.
Sometimes you might even need exotic brands like TPU or glow-in-the-dark filament.
To keep costs down and print the best cosplay props, make sure you select the right filament.