Last year, Anker made the jump to the 3D printing category with the AnkerMake M5, a fabrication machine that produces good quality prints at impressive speeds. While it isn’t perfect, it’s definitely one of the better 3D printers available at its $700 price point. This year, the outfit is following it up with the AnkerMake M5C, which bundles most of the same tech in a more affordable package.
Designed to be even simpler than its predecessor, the 3D printer comes in a one-piece design, so it’s easier to set up, although there is still some initial assembly involved (a 15-minute job, according to the outfit). It’s slightly more compact, so you get a smaller print bed, although it brings most of the other capabilities from the bigger printer, including the same precision, leveling system, print speed, and more.
The AnkerMaker M5C has a print volume of 8.66 x 8.66 x 5.9 inches (220 x 220 x 150 mm), which may be smaller than the M5, but remains big enough to let you fabricate a whole load of cool stuff. It has a flexible PEI magnetic plate that allows for easy removal of models, while a 49-point automatic bed leveling system ensures the bed is properly set at the correct distance from the nozzle at all times. The all-metal extruder hotend delivers 60W of heating power, allowing it to reach 300 degrees Celsius (572 degrees Fahrenheit) to quickly melt different kinds of filament materials (it has a sensor that can detect the type of filament inserted).
It features the second generation of the outfit’s PowerBoost motion control system that gradually increases print speed as the job progresses without sacrificing quality, allowing it to hit print speeds of 500 mm per second and acceleration up to 5,000 mm per second. According to Anker, the new system is able to reduce inertia and jerking, while suppressing vibrations, which enables 0.1mm precision even at the highest speed settings.
The AnkerMaker M5C, of course, ditches some of the things from the more expensive M5 to make the new 3D printer more affordable. Most notable of the omissions is the touchscreen display, so you won’t be able to punch in settings right on the machine. Instead, you’ll have to use the companion apps (iOS, Android, PC, and Mac) to transfer models, tweak settings, and monitor the status of your print. It also ditches the HD camera which integrated AI monitoring for the build, so you don’t get the benefit of that, along with the timelapse videos it produces. Alternatively, it offers a single button at the base, which can be programmed with up to three functions (press, double tap, and long press) using the same apps, so you can use it to pause builds, resume them, and more.
Construction is aluminum alloy for the structure, making it both good-looking and very durable. Other features include multi-color printing support (needs optional component), 8GB of onboard storage, and a USB slot that’s accessible from the side.
The AnkerMake M5C is available now, priced at $399.