The Anet A8 3D-Printer DIY Kit Review

Anet A8 Review

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The Anet A8 3D-Printer DIY Kit Review
4.2 (84%) 5 votes

 The Anet A8 3D-Printer

The search began, probing the internet for a 3d printer on a budget. Finally, I came across the Anet A8 DIY kit and the prices seemed reasonable from multiple online retailers. From about $150 to $200 was the typical price range that I seen. After spending hours watching YouTube videos on the capabilities of 3D printing, I was convinced that I had to have one.

Anet A8

Ultimately, I searched Google for a coupon or discount and found one for the Anet A8 DIY kit for $129.99 and I ordered it. Thinking ahead I made sure to order some 1.75mm filament with it. Arriving from China within a week, the un-boxing began . Like a kid on Christmas morning, I was full of excitement. Carefully opening the box as quickly as I could, I verify that nothing is damaged or missing.

Do it yourself

Keeping in mind that this is a Do-It-Yourself(DIY) kit, there is assembly required. Do not let that discourage you as there are detailed instructions included on the SD card included, as well as numerous YouTube videos and an enormous online community available for help if needed. All of the tools necessary for completing the assembly process are included which makes things simple. The assembly process took me about 8 hours to complete, but can be done in a much shorter time. During this time I was sure to double check that everything was going together correctly. It’s important to note that you should hook up electronics to power supply before assembly to ensure your components are in good working order.

G-code

Cura Ultimaker Robot

This printer runs from G-code files generated in a slicer program such as Cura or Repetier-Host. I have used both with success.There is also Simplify-3d, which is a paid software that I have not yet used. These G-code files are placed on the SD card via the USB SD card reader included. You will need to use your computer, whether a laptop or PC. There are many settings in the slicer software that can be changed with different results, but that’s another subject. I will say that for me the print speed and nozzle temperature have the biggest visual impact. My settings would likely not match the same printer in a different environment. Some types of plastic are more sensitive to humidity, while the ambient room temperature could effect your nozzle and print bed temperatures.

Printing with Anet A8

Batman Print

Finally with the assembly complete and a G-code file ready, I load the SD card into the printer and power it on. After leveling the print bed and loading the filament I was ready for my first print. It was semi-successful, however, this was due to my slicer settings. After getting my settings calibrated to my printer and environment, I was getting better results than I ever expected out of such a low cost machine.

Upgrades

The upgrades available include different types of extruders, printable belt tensioners, fan shrouds. Glass print beds, flexible print beds, the list goes on and on. You can also design your on upgrades or anything else that you might want to print on Tinkercad.com. There are plenty of tutorials to get you started. Free files are available at Thingiverse.com for downloading to print. Some of these files have different licenses, so some you may not be able to resell while others you will.

Patience is important to success

With a bit of patience and practice the performance of this machine along with it’s ease of use make this printer worth the money and then some. After a short time of owning one, people will begin to ask you to make them things. It can be a nice little side income for a relatively low investment. There are many upgrades that are available to print and purchase, but out of the box I was able to get precision prints after a few attempts and getting to know the machine.

I would recommend the Anet A8 DIY kit to anyone looking to join the 3D printing community without having to spend a whole lot of money, but especially beginners because the assembly process helps develop a working knowledge of your machine. I would recommend searching the internet for coupons and codes. Mine was purchased from Gearbest.com and I had no problems. We are all always searching for a bargain and with the cost of printers dropping and the popularity growing, they are definitely getting more available. 

In conclusion, this is a great little machine for the money. It is surprisingly capable for a low cost printer and would be a great addition for beginners and experts alike. Below is a list of pros and cons to help those considering purchasing an Anet A8 3d printer. 

Conclusions

PROS

  • Inexpensive
  • Easily upgraded
  • Takes up very little space

CONS

  • Needs upgrades for certain types of filament
  • No enclosure for electronic components
  • Comes with masking tape on print bed

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22 Comments
  1. Justin Flugum says

    I thought about the Anet a8 as it is so cheap, but I ended opting for spending more on Chinese parts to build a Prusa I3 Mk2s clone. It cost almost double the Anet but it works great and I know it inside out.

    1. Daniel Faegnell says

      See this is exactly how you should get into 3d printing. by building your own. I like Anet A8 because there is always some tweaking that needs to be done and its cheap.

  2. Jose says

    I liked but i think that CR10 is better.

    1. Brian Compton says

      For price per volume CR10 is the best value…
      It’s a bit large, and the Anet A8 can be built into a rather small enclosure to aid in printing ABS

  3. Tom Baxter says

    Thank you for the review Jacob. I had heard a lot of mixed reviews about the A8 & the A6. I wonder if it’s a good printer that requires a someone with a little know-how to assemble in order to get decent prints. That might explain the poor reviews.

    1. Jacob Rutherford says

      Thanks for reading Tom! A little bit of mechanical ability is required for assembly. It took some time and practice adjusting the slicer settings to get the results I wanted.

  4. Derek Thomas says

    I for one are very happy with my Anet A8, I have printed PLA,PLA+,PETG,Wood,Flex filament without any problems or upgrades, its my first printer and have learnt a lot by building and using it

    1. Jacob Rutherford says

      Thanks for reading Derek! If you ever want to start printing with a nylon filament you will have to upgrade to an all metal extruder. The tube that you feed the filament into has a liner inside that I believe is made of Teflon. This would deteriorate due to the heat required to work with Nylon. Although I have seen some nylon filaments that melt at lower temps, but i still would recommend upgrading the extruder before trying. I would do this for any filament containing carbon fiber as well to prevent the nozzle from clogging.

      1. Brian Compton says

        With a tiny bit of upgrade (insulate bed, get MOSFET modules and better wire) you can print ABS with ease…I have been exclusively printing ABS on mine…reserve the PLA for our Anycubic Kossel and once I get it set up my TronXY X1

  5. Richard Bynum says

    So nice that there was a coupon on Google!! I didn’t know we could look that stuff up! Thanks for sharing! Yea, the A8 is the “go to” 3D printer for the money. And it’s nice that it has a heated bed!! Now to go find coupons on Google!!

  6. Brian Compton says

    Awesome! With just a few printable upgrades you can turn a stock Anet A8 into a VERY good printing machine, rivalling some of the $1000+ dollar machines
    I print on my Anet A8 almost daily!

  7. Phillip says

    Great

  8. Samuel Blair says

    I had been considering the A8 but also heard mixed reviews. As a first-time buyer/printer I didn’t want to get something I needed to build yet – got a Monoprice instead. Thanks for writing!

  9. bexwhitt says

    On DIY printer KIts make sure the heavy current DC electrical connections are well made, it there is any heat on the connection it’s a bad one.
    Many people say the Anet absolutely needs an external MOSFET, though I have one on the heated bed I would disagree, see my comment above.
    The bed connection on the Anet A8/A6 needs strain relief to stop it causing heat in the connection and inevitably burning out. A addition of insulation to the heatbed will make heat-up far quicker.

  10. Sumit Trivedi says

    I too possess an Anet A8 and have been using it since 2 years. Tell you what, I have faced no troubles whatsoever in printing the objects. This is probably one of the best 3D printers available nowadays at its price.

  11. Ron says

    Thanks for this, I have been on the fence about ordering one.

  12. Annaloa Hilmarsdottir says

    I was uncertain but now I have made up my mind !

  13. ALEXANDRU IRIMIEA says

    What is the board model this printer is using? I noticed the printer’s design is similar to a Sunhokey I3 Prusa model – is the board a MKS GEN-2Z V1.2 or equivalent?

  14. Mitul Prajapati says

    Nice printer in its price range, and good content

  15. Gabriel says

    WOW

  16. Gabriel says

    What is the best package for this printer and best place to purchase?

  17. Ronan says

    Ordered my first DIY kit yesterday. Excited to get stuck in 🙂

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