The Ender 3 is probably one of the best-selling 3D printers in the world in its category. Released in 2018, with a budget of around €200, this 3D printer sold as a partially assembled kit, has allowed many users to get into 3D printing on a budget.
Since 2018, Creality has made some minor improvements to this range, with the Ender3 Pro and last year with the Ender 3 V2, but in the face of competing machines, it was time for Creality to give the Ender 3 series a more thorough review.
The new Ender 3 S1 and Ender 3 S1 Pro were announced by Creality at the beginning of the year, and Creality seems to have completely revised its copy, these machines being closer to the CR-6 SE range, with much more advanced functionalities. These evolutions will have a significant impact on the price, as the Ender 3 S1 is now over 400€, the Pro version should also be around 500€.
The new features of the Ender 3 S1 and Ender 3 S1 Pro
These machines are now equipped with a dual motor on the Z-axis, allowing for greater stability and better print quality
Creality has also adopted a Direct Drive extruder, a type of extruder that facilitates the printing of certain flexible filaments. Competitors such as Sovol and Artillery were already equipping their machines with this type of extruder, which is highly appreciated by the community.
The Ender3 S1 is also equipped with a CR-Touch self-levelling sensor (also manufactured by Creality), this type of sensor greatly simplifies the adjustment of the plate, to improve the adhesion of the first layers. The installation of this type of sensor was undoubtedly one of the improvements most practiced by Ender3 users, so we appreciate that this CR-Touch is now installed in series.
For the tray, there is a flexible magnetic tray, allowing the removal of printed models with a simple gesture, it was not always easy to remove a printed model with a spatula, at the risk of scratching the tray or even damaging the part. This type of tray is becoming more and more common among competitors, and it is indeed very practical.
Both machines are equipped with a 32bit motherboard, with silent TMC drivers, although this type of board had already been adopted since the Ender3 V2, Creality seems to have developed a new range of motherboards (version 2.4) that offers a USB-C type connector (the first 3D printer equipped with this type of USB port to my knowledge), as well as an SD card reader.
For the Ender 3 S1, Creality keeps the same screen as the Ender 3 V2, namely an LCD screen with a more modern graphical interface than the first Ender3 range. The Ender 3 S1 Pro has a higher end touch screen
These two new 3D printers are also both equipped with belt tensioners on the X and Y axes, Creality had already integrated these accessories on the V2 range
. They are also equipped with a filament end sensor, which did not exist on the Ender3 range until now.
As for the Pro version, we find the same improvements as the Ender 3 S1, Creality does not use the same chassis between these 2 machines, even if they are part of the same range, you can easily recognize them. This Pro version allows for higher temperatures, 300° for the nozzle and 110° for the plate, and its flexible plate is covered with a PEI surface.
Finally, unlike the old Ender3 series, these machines are almost completely pre-assembled, so it only takes a few minutes to assemble. This makes the new series even more appealing to those who are not so handy.
Our opinion on the new Ender 3 S1 and Ender 3 S1 Pro!
The Ender 3 was undoubtedly popular because of its very attractive price, but also because it was a good base machine to then add any improvements of one’s choice, improvements that sometimes cost several hundred euros!
With this new series, Creality wanted to integrate all the features most expected by its users, a machine that is easy to assemble and to use. On paper these machines look very attractive, and seem to be much more high-end than the first generation.