I am thinking of getting a 3D printer for general tinkering and as I've very interested in the MicroscoPy project. The printer mentioned in the project is "Creality Ender 3 Pro printer with a metal extruder and a BLTouch auto bed-leveling sensor", which when I looked was out of stock. However, it's not clear to me that I need to get this particular printer. My understanding is that Creality makes decent printers for the beginner so I was focusing on those (other suggestions welcome). I wanted to stay at \$200−\$300. I'm having a heck of a time figuring out the differences between different models. A simple comparison spreadsheet seems hard to find. I've seen this at various sites

  • Creality3d Upgraded Ender-3 V2
  • Creality Ender-3 S1 3D
  • Creality Ender-3 S1 Pro
  • Creality Ender-3 Pro

Part of the problem is that I think different sites (Amazon, Creality) use slightly different names. For example, the last two printers I listed might be the same printer.

I realize any information given here will be quickly out of date as new models are introduced, but perhaps links to comparison sites or review sites would serve a larger audience. Or perhaps even documents on how a newbie to 3D printing can get started.

Again, my end goal is the project I mentioned. I'd like to get a printer that is as least as good as what he's using (feature-wise): "Creality Ender 3 Pro printer with a metal extruder and a BLTouch auto bed-leveling sensor"

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    $\begingroup$ I would suggest going to the official Creality website because, as you pointed out, different sites will use different wording. Be aware that Creality has different series of printers (Ender 2, 3, 5, 6; CR 6, 10, 30) and different variations within that series (Pro, Plus, Max, Neo, V2). This is probably the main cause of your confusion. $\endgroup$
    – agarza
    Sep 6, 2022 at 17:24
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    $\begingroup$ Also, not all iterations are numbered: there are at least half a dozen different Ender 3 without any extras that differ by production months. $\endgroup$
    – Trish
    Sep 6, 2022 at 18:16
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    $\begingroup$ Don't look at the typical auction and Eastern webshop sites (as these are flooded with clones and different versions) and go directly to the official Creality website and browse the printers there. Order your printer at a respectable seller nearby or from a trustworthy online printer store in your country. I'd probably vote to close this question as this is close to a recommendation question which are not allowed and summing up all the differences is something you could do yourself by using their official website. $\endgroup$
    – 0scar
    Sep 6, 2022 at 19:28
  • $\begingroup$ Thank you all. I'm focusing on Ender-3 V2 and Ender 3 Pro, both about the same price. Still trying to figure out the differences.... $\endgroup$
    – Dave
    Sep 7, 2022 at 13:46
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    $\begingroup$ Most of that project uses Lego. The rotary table and gears would be the most demanding 3DP parts. For that project, any perceived benefits of the bed leveling and metal extruder over the normal models might be offset by the learning curve required to take advantage of those upgrades. $\endgroup$
    – Dave X
    Sep 7, 2022 at 22:11

1 Answer 1


I'd like to get a printer that is as least as good as what he's using (feature-wise):

Then you need to modify one yourself, a basic Ender 3 could be the base machine. But the all metal hotend and auto bed-levelling are not stock for it or the Ender 3 pro. They're addons of dubious value which need to be purchased and installed.


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