Larger i3 style aluminum extrusion printers have been dominating the 3D printer market for some time now. Although they perform well, they are large and midway through last year there was the release of a couple smaller form factors. The Geeetech A20 falls under the recent form factor which is an aluminum upper assembly mounted onto a sheet metal base providing a 255mm x 255mm x 255mm build volume with a price of $349 USD. While it has a different type of assembly, it is a clean looking 3D printer that should perform just as good as all the other V-wheel/V-slot printers like the Creality CR-10. Geeetech provided me their A20 3D printer so that I could provide an honest review. So, let’s take an in-depth look at the Geeetech A20.
Geeetech A20 Specifications
Printing technology: FDM
Build volume: 255*255*255 mm³
Filament diameter: 1.75mm
Nozzle diameter: 0.4mm
Filament: ABS / PLA /wood-polymer/PVA/HIPS/PETG, etc.
Max temp for hotbed: 100℃
Max temp for extruder: 250℃
Power supply: Input: 110V/220V
Output: DC 24V/15A
Connectivity: USB cable, SD card (support stand-alone printing)
Display screen: LCD 12864
Build Platform: Aluminum heatbed+ silicon carbide glass
Stepper Motors: 1.8°step angle with 1/16 micro-stepping
Machine Dimension: 442 x 447 x 480mm³
Shipping box Dimension: 510 x 495 x 295mm³
Machine Net weight: 7.8kg
Geeetech’s packing job is as good as I’ve seen. Because they use a nice sturdy foam which protects the printer’s upper and lower assemblies, there were no missing parts or broken components upon inspection.
The assembly process of the Geeetech A20 is really simple. Four m5 screws threaded through the base of the printer into the bottom of the upper assembly’s aluminum extrusion takes a couple minutes at most. Due to the mostly pre-assembled components, the remaining assembly requires installing the filament spool holder to the top of the frame and plugging in the electrical connectors.
It is a clean looking 3D printer that feels sturdy. The base is sheet metal and they use a 2020 aluminum extrusion mounted underneath to add support for the top assembly. Because of the ample room in the base assembly, there is no tethered control box to contend with. The electronics are neatly assembled in the sheet metal base which is a feature I can appreciate as I do not print in enclosures and space is limited in my shop. Geeetech’s hot end assembly uses it’s own little breakout board to make future maintenance easier for replacement parts should that be required which I felt was a nice feature. In contrast, I was less impressed by the fact Geeetech has decided to move towards single bearing v-wheels for the Geeetech A20. Seems like this is a cost cutting exercise.
I leveled the bed and decided to go a little big on my first print, an owl shaped pen holder. I started off with a decent profile I had used for a Geeetech A10 in the past and I made some slight modifications to accommodate the size difference and proceeded. The results were fairly good to start with but you can see ghosting in the print. Ghosting was caused by Acceleration and Jerk values in the motion settings that were set too high. So, I reduced the Acceleration and Jerk settings. When I attempted another print my next set of troubles began.
Clog after clog, I could not complete a print. I removed the hot end assembly after watching a video Geeetech released on YouTube. The video showed how to disassemble their proprietary hot end. I removed the clog, rebuilt the hot end, and tried again. Another clog. I contacted Geeetech and they agreed with me something must be amiss with the hot end. As a result, a replacement hot end was sent out immediately. Once the replacement arrived I compared it to my old one. The new hot end had a PTFE tube in the heatbreak and the old one did not, it was missing. Certainly, this seemed like it would be the problem, so I mounted the new hot end and I had no more clogging issues going forward.
I also did try out the advertised filament run-out sensor and power outage resume feature. While both features worked (when replacing the filament and turning the power back on), the print had a layer shifted at each event. In short, the features function, but your results may vary.
Print after print I was able to start a print and I didn’t even need to watch the first layer. I would come back to my shop later on with a nicely completed print on the plate. As a result, this provided a comforting sense of reliability. Geeetech’s cooling duct was just barely adequate from my perspective. The Benchy printed quite nicely except the very back of the boat where there was some minor curling.
Geeetech’s super plate held the prints fine on all except my largest print, this unique pen holder. The model is a decent size and took 22 hours. As a result, it did contract and lose some adhesion around the far edges. With the motion settings being tuned a little and slicing profile I was using working well, I was very happy with my print results. I would recommend moving to a better cooling duct to improve the print quality further. However for the purposes of a review I like to keep the 3D printer as stock as possible.
Geeetech has a fairly large online community on Facebook. There are two groups that I am apart of. Similarly, both seem to have very friendly members with a decent amount of knowledge on the Geeetech A Series printers.
The Geeetech A10/A20/A30 Printer User Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/206519003304580
Geeetech 3D Printer User Club https://www.facebook.com/groups/315127105604393
After approximately 100 hours of 3D printing I can say that I do like the A20. While I did have the hot end issue which I will conclude was a QC issue from the factory, Geeetech was responsive and remedied it quite quickly. After the hot end was replaced it was reliable with successful prints being churned out regularly. I can’t conclude how well the single bearing v-wheels will hold up over the long run, however they did not seem to affect the print quality during this review period.
I really do appreciate the cleanliness of the built-in electronics base and I also liked the ease of assembly and maintenance. Furthermore, it was nice having the hot end break out board as it made for an easier time replacing the hot end when I had to do that. Like any printer there is some tuning involved. However, once setup you will have a nice workhorse based on my experience. Therefore, I recommend the Geeetech A20 as a nice sized printer that will handle your needs in a 255mm x 255mm x 255mm build volume.
You can purchase directly from Geeetech here, and take $30 off using coupon code WCDSW (at the time this review was posted) :