Creality Ender S1 Pro Review

Creality’s Ender series of 3D printers has long been a favorite of aficionados and newcomers alike, thanks to the models’ inexpensive open frames and ease of use. The Ender S1 Pro is the latest addition to the Ender series. It supports high-temperature printing and produced some stunning prints. The S1 Pro’s pre-assembled parts make it easy to set up unlike the Ender-3 V2. The Ender S1 Pro 3D Printer is a welcomed addition to the 3D printer market. It’s sure to please both beginners and more experienced 3D printer users looking for a printer that is affordable.

Design of the Ender S1 Pro: Assembly (Barely).

The S1 Pro employs the same open-frame design as the Ender-3 V2 and the Prusa i3 series of printers. Measuring 24.6 by 19.2 by 17.9 inches (HWD), the printer’s frame is slightly wider than that of the Ender-3 V2. The S1 Pro’s build space measures 10.7 by 8.7x 8.7 inches. The printer weighs in at 18.9 pounds. However, it is almost 10 pounds lighter that the AnkerMake M5, an open-frame printer that won an Editors Choice award.

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Creality Ender S1 Pro with white cat

(Credit: Molly Flores).

Creality chooses a spring steel, polyetherimide (PEI), build plate. This magnetically adheres the base to Creality and allows for fast heating and good adhesion. For printing removal, bend the plate. The plate is relatively maintenance-free, doesn’t require any additional adhesives like glue, and is easier to manage than a glass bed.

Like the Ender-3 V2, the printer’s base holds the power supply and supports the carriage on which the build platform can move in and out. There is a USB port and an SD card slot on the front of this printer. Besides the ports, you’ll find a built-in tool drawer, where you can stash the many small pieces included with the printer. Along the back, you’ll also find a power switch and a voltage switch that can be set to either 115 or 230 volts, depending on the electricity supply where you live.

Structurally, the S1 Pro doesn’t stray too far from what you’d expect from an open-frame 3D printer, and installation was a breeze, for the most part. The printer requires you to fasten only six major parts into place before you’re ready to print. The printer has two vertical beams that are semi-hollow and connect to the sides. These hold the crossbar down, while the other horizontal beam controls the extruder.

Creality Ender S1 Pro 3D printer

(Credit: Molly Flores).

The top of the spool holder holds your standard spool of filament. An LCD is bolted to the base to the right of this build platform. The diagonal measurement of the screen is 4.3 inches. It is touch-controlled. Nine languages are preloaded on the interface.

Smooth feeding of printing materials is possible with the full-metal extruder. The S1 Pro supports a variety of filament types including polylactic acid, acrylonitrilebutadiene (ABS), wood and thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU), polyethylene triephthalate glycols (PETG) and polyamide (PA).

Your Level Best: Adjusting your Ender Pro

The S1 Pro includes all necessary tools, including wrenches to tighten or loosen the print bed. The S1 Pro, however, is a plug-and play affair. This is in contrast to the Ender 3 V2. Although it is mostly plug-and-play, the S1 Pro still requires some manual labor to ensure that the print bed is level. True, the S1 does include an auto-leveling program that adjusts five different points, and it does a fairly decent job of preparing the printer, but you’ll need to be a bit more hands-on if you want proper results.

Creality Ender S1 Pro 3D printer display

(Credit: Molly Flores).

The plus side is that it was very easy to navigate the menus and manage the plate levels. You’ll find a knob at each corner of the build plate that raises or lowers that section of the plate, depending on the direction you turn it. You’ll want to aim to maintain about a 0.1mm gap between your extruder nozzle and the build plate. Measuring that gap is easier than you’d expect, however, as a normal piece of 8.5-by-11-inch printer paper does the trick just fine. Slide it between the plate’s nozzle and paper, and adjust to give the paper some resistance.

Creality Ender S1 Pro 3D printer tool drawer

(Credit: Molly Flores).

This is the most crucial step. Why? Well, if the nozzle is too close to the build plate, the filament won’t come out. If it’s too far, the filament will not be able to properly adhere to the plate. It is mostly trial and error. You will need to adjust each corner and run a test print to make sure you get the right result. There’s nothing worse than walking away and returning to find that you’ve printed a bunch of spaghetti.

The Ender S1 Pro is tested: Slicing, Dicing

Once you’re leveled, you’ll finally arrive at the most important part—the printing. You will receive a small bundle of white filament as an initial kit, but you can also choose from two additional combo packs. The basic combo costs $533 and includes a PLA pack that contains two spools, a nozzle kit, and a PLA set. The upgrade combo costs $568 and includes the nozzle kit as well as a laser engraving module. Both options include the Ender S1 Pro Printer, which is also included in the combo option.

Creality also includes Creality Slicer 3D printing software on an SD card. However, you can also download it via the internet. It shares DNA with Cura (an open-source 3D printing app) In preparing files to print on the Ender-3 V2, I used both Cura and Creality Slicer. Both were very easy to use.

Creality Slicer screenshot

(Credit: Creality)

If you’ve never used any of the software before, don’t worry. Once you have a 3D file such as STL or OBJ loaded, it’s easy to navigate. Are you looking for inspiration? Sources like Thingiverse offer files online for many free objects(Opens in a new browser)You can print the four sample objects on the SD card.

After you have loaded the software, you will see an image of the object that you want to print and a visualization of the bed. Here, you can manipulate the object as you please, rotating and scaling within the printer’s capabilities. You can adjust settings such as resolution and fill.

Creality Ender S1 Pro 3D printer spool

(Credit: Molly Flores).

The Slice button maps the layers to print based on the quality (resolution) you have chosen and provides an estimate of the print time. There are three options for printing: You can either load the file directly from your SD card, use a USB cable, or print wirelessly. These are the most dangerous options, and are most likely to make mistakes.

I printed four objects using PLA filament at 200 microns—three objects from Creality’s presets, and one Yoda bust downloaded from the Thingiverse. The prints printed well and had a good level of detail. The ribbling, also known as “z-banding,” was minimal and there was no visible warping.

Creality Ender S1 Pro out (White cat, rabbit, and Yoda)

(Credit: Molly Flores).

I didn’t encounter any misprints, either, apart from one that was due to a nasty filament-reel tangle that occurred about halfway through. That one I think was user error, however. (Some PLA spools can become tangled during printing, so make sure you check your spool for any snags prior to printing. Overall, the S1 Pro printed well, better than the Monoprice Mini Delta V2 and Ender 3.

Verdict: All that’s fit to print

The S1 Pro is not designed to be a beginner printer but it has all the qualities of a top-quality model. The S1 Pro is a powerful 3D printer that’s easy to set up and maintain. It could even be sold by naysayers for its novelty. The quality of the prints isn’t perfect, but they’re good enough considering the Printer’s $479 price, which is still well below premium 3D printers like the Dremel DigiLab 3D45, and even other open-frame printers like the Prusa i3 MK3S+.

The S1 Pro title does contain “Pro”, but it is a great starting point for novices or curious hobbyists who want to explore the world of 3D printers. AnkerMake M5 (a slightly more costly option) is better value overall and remains Editors Choice because of its superior quality and auto-leveling.

The bottom line

Creality Ender S1 Pro is an easy-to use 3D printer, suitable for both beginners and experienced 3D-printers.

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