When dealing with electronic items, you often heard about the circuit board. Just like humans have brains to control the overall functioning of the body, in the same way, electronic items have control boards or circuit boards to look after the overall functionality of the product.
Therefore, a controller board is referred to as the brain of the product, and for that reason, the status and quality of it matter the most.
3D Printer Controller Board
When it comes to 3D printing, perfection and quality can be seen effortlessly and hence maintaining it is necessary. 3D printing involves a number of techniques and processes and has to deal with several parameters.
All pressure and handling of the settings lie on the efficiency of the controller board. A slight change in the system can cause a noticeable difference in the overall design.
All background communication and technicalities go through the controller board. Having a high-quality controller board means high-quality results and better performance with fast speed.
Choosing the appropriate controller board for your 3D printer is not as simple as it seems because you will find a huge variety of it with different models and designs, each having distinct features and characteristics.
In the same way, knowing the price is also essential so that you get the suitable controller board at a reasonable cost.
For this, here we are going to present you with a comprehensive view of some of the top-rated and best controller board for 3D printer. You should pick out the one which you be keen of and matches your requirement.
Before moving to the controller board view, let’s check out the few important elements which you should look for in good quality 3D printer controller board.
The first and important thing to check is the printer’s compatibility with the controller board. With the advancement in technology, specialized controller boards are now being introduced which are made for specific models and designs.
Therefore always remember to check whether the printer and its components are compatible with it or not.
Processing power is an important element to consider and highly affects the overall speed. When there is an option to choose, you should always prefer the upgraded version of the processor.
In this case, there is 8-bit boards and 32-bit boards. There is no doubt that 32-bit board will give more strength and power.
When talking about the performance, Micro stepping also plays a vital role as it devises the movement of stepper motors. Micro stepping setting helps in reducing the noise level and consuming less electricity.
Wired or Wireless
Communication is an essential element, and it can be done in two ways. If you want to observe and control your 3D printer remotely, you need to have Wi-Fi capabilities.
Wireless or wired communication is for your comfortability, and you can decide what you need.
It is always not necessary; nevertheless, the product widespread and becomes well-known for a reason. It is preferred to go for the popular item as it will be more reliable and trustworthy, and there are fewer chances that it does not end well.
Top 3D Printer Controller Board
Based on the above factors, there are few controller boards for the 3D printer we have shortlisted and are mentioned below with comprehensive details.
SKR Mini E3
Designed and developed by Bigtree Technology, the SKR Mini E3 controller board is rated among the best and is being used all over the world.
The field professionals highly recommend it for enhanced performance and quality, especially if you have a Creality ender 3 printer.
It provides easy control and user access with integrated touchscreen along with the usual control system.
Bigtree SKR Mini E3 offers you Micro USB and micro SD card connection and a reserved port for an outer Wi-Fi module with integrated drivers. While having a capability to operate on the input power of 12 to 24V, this circuit comes within your budget.
Smoothie boars is an open-source controller board having different versions based on the number of drivers. Smoothie board con operates at 12 to 24 V and has incorporated stepper drivers.
Smoothie board offers you 120-MHz processor power and is rated at the top in the list of the 32-bit controller board.
It allows you better control with easy configuration setting and has USB, and Ethernet connection enabled with the addition of micro SD card. This board price is reasonable and slightly increases depending on the version of it.
Designed by the Entweg, it is considered as the enhanced version of Arduino Mega2560 and thus offers better performance and results.
It can operate at 12 to 24 V with high processing power and gives better heat dissipation while consuming less energy without compromising the smooth operation.
The board has an integrated LCD screen to keep you updated with the functionality and has built-in USB and SD card ports. In addition, this board allows you to manage the extruder and the fan separately.
Duet 2 Wi-Fi
Duet 2 Wi-Fi is one of the latest design model controller board for 3D printer and rated at the top in terms of quality and durability. Duet 2 has a 32-bit ARM chip offering you better connectivity options with integrated drivers.
Above all, Duet 2 offers you 1/256th micro-stepping setting, which is considered as the best and gives you the most pleasing quality output result.
With USB and SD card slot, it has WI-FI connectivity option and can operate at 12 to 24 V input supply power. Based on its features and characteristics, the cost is considered as reasonable.
Re-ARM is another latest controller board for a 3D printer having 32-bit LPC1768 chip; it gives you much higher speed and processor power with accuracy.
It is also considered as the most user-friendly controller board as it allows you multiple configuration setting options.
The Re-ARM runs open-source firmware, with no integrated drivers, it can operate at an input power supply of 10 to 30 V. Fully attuned with RAMPS 1.4 and 1.6, this controller board is cost-effective and is easy to configure.