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DLP-Printer are currently really starting to roll. Previously expensive professional devices especially known from the dental medicine industry are becoming increasingly popular thanks to manufacturers as Creality or Anycubic. Creality is usually known for FDM-printer as the CR10 or the Ender 3 which enjoy great popularity due to the good price-performance ratio. With the Creality LD-001 they now bring a competitor to the Anycubic Photon to the market. We tested this printer and figured out all its strengths and weaknesses. The delivery was easy via Banggod. It only took 14 days which is still a good amount considering it is a delivery directly from China. We should also mention that the delivery of the printer in Germany took way longer than the delivery from China to Germany.
With a building area from 120 x 70 x 120 mm the LD-001 is slightly greater than the Photon (115 x 65 x 115) which is nice but, in my opinion, not a decisive advantage as it really is just a little bit bigger. Unfortunately, in contrast to the Anycubic Photon, Creality did not tried to install a filter. Even if it does not make a huge difference, Anycubic tried to filter the steams and to reduce the strong smell during printing with resin. Here, I would really want Creality to improve this in the next version of the printer and to eventually find a solution to further reduce the smell of the resin. Besides the 3D-printer the scope of delivery includes:
- Power supply with cable (EU- and US-plug)
- Tank for resin
- Filter to return the resin into the bottle
- 250ml resin
- 2 pair of gloves and 2 respirators
- 1 brush to clean the components in Isopropyl
- USB-stick with provided files
By now it is no longer worth mentioning that the printer has been packed really well. As all the other printer that we got from China the Creality LD-001 was packaged good and arrived safely. The printer arrives completely installed and only the resin tank has to be inserted before the first commissioning. The accessories are packed in a sensible way so that everything can be quickly taken out of the package to get started.
The first print
Before starting with the first print, the printing plate has to be levelled. This is easy and is no bigger problem as you might know it from some FDM-printers. Just loosen the four screws on the building plate, remove the resin tank (if its already put in) and then put a sheet of paper on the display and let the printer drive to the home position. Then tighten the screws again and you are done. So far everything was easy, unpacking the printer, levelling it and log in to the WIFI, everything could easily have been done with the supplied instructions and the official video. But then comes the software. As the printer gets delivered with a proprietary software you have to rely on Creality at point. In the beginning we did the mistake of using the slicer version that got delivered on the USB-stick. This one is outdated and includes lots of bugs resulting in the support structure partly being placed in the object and not be removed. After contacting Creality they send us newer version really fast via e-mail. This one worked much better, the support structures were placed correctly, and the software crashed less. At this point, a great compliment to Creality as the improvement between the version is enormous.
The print results
Since we updated the slicer we get good setting with the support. We usually set the support structure to light or medium depending on the object. As exposure time 75s for the first two layers and 10s for the other layers turned out to be good for Creality’s resin. The printer itself already shows details very well. The adhesion to the printing plate has been really strong already too strong with the first prints., bur this got better after a few prints and the object could be removed easier. But maybe this is a result of a leaning effect on our site. In the gallery we uploaded some example prints, so please go ahead and have a look on the printer yourself. If you would like to have an example print, then just send us a message.
I have asked myself for a long time now if I would recommend the printer and I am still not sure. The printing results definitely did convince me after the update and the handling via the 3,5” touch display is simple and clearly arranged. But the uncertainty if Creality will further develop the software or will stop it remains. Whoever is fine with this uncertainty will have a good printer with the Creality, but who would like more certainty regarding the software development will have a great alternative with the Anycubic Photon. It is important to mention that DLP-printer are not for absolute beginners and should only be used in well-ventilated spaces. But then they enable results which cannot be produced with usual FDM-printers. So, tell us in the comments what you think about DLP-printers and if you would get one yourself. Enjoy the pictures!
P.S. We are talking to Creality if we can provide the newer slicer version as a download here.
Creality LD-001: https://bit.ly/2UvaKYQ
Anycubic Photon: https://bit.ly/2zgHAmk
Anycubic Resin (works with LD-001): https://bit.ly/2Dgikkv