Ankermake M5 and Prusa MK4

I am looking to upgrade from my Ender 3. Looking for something that requires no fussing, I just want to print. Additional speed would be the the next most important attibribute. So i have been reading up on the new printers such as the Prusa MK4, Ankermake M5 and the two Bambu labs printers.

After watching another superb video on the Ankermake, it got me to wondering…

If i understand the new advances correctly, the Ankermake is not a Core XY machine and seems to share the same mechanical design as the Prusa MK4. The internet comments on the MK4 suggest that the Core XY design will always be faster and the MK4 will get some speed gain but be limited to a gain of 30% or so, even after the input shaping firmware is releases.

So, how did Ankermate achieve such a fast printer using a similar mechanical design as Prusa? What is the secret sauce? The naysayers seem to think Prusa well never achieve more than the 30% gain, but Ankermake seems to be ahead of them by quite a bit. Does Ankermake already use some version of input shaping (which I don’t have the foggiest idea of what that is)?

I can’t comment on the Ankermake or the MK4 but I do have a 3 week old Bambu X1C Combo and it’s amazing how how fast it prints and how well it prints. I have had 3 Ender 3 of different versions and a SV04 and the X1C is faster and prints better than any of them. All I so is slice things using the stock profiles and the prints are great. Even printing at 0.28mm layer height they look good.

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I suspect that Prusa is being very conservative in its speeds. As the table and print head move faster and faster, their momentum increases, and it becomes harder and harder to change direction. The structure flexes, only a very little, but we see it as vertical lines around corners. The distance between those lines represents a characteristic distance–one that reflects (depends on) the structure of the printer and the surface/table it rests on (anything that can move or vibrate). Because speed (of the print head or bed) is involved, those distances represent characteristic frequencies. Typically, these frequencies have one or two strong peaks of intensity, and can be damped out with an appropriate algorithm (input shaping) that changes speeds and acceleration dynamically, on-the-fly.

You might also want to look into Creality’s K1, a knock off of Bambu’s P1P only cheaper and “faster” (at least according to Creality’s advertising). More importantly (to me, at any rate), it is not a closed system like Bambu.


P.S. – I just learned that Sovol is coming out with the SV07 with Klipper and claimed speeds up to 250 mm/s for only $400. Competition is great!

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The Ankermake has dual belts, a large stepper motor, and highly optimize software driving the Y axis to achieve high speed printing on a “bed slinger”. They claim to have tuned their SW to minimize vibrations typical of printers in this style.

The print quality on the Ankermake even when running in “fast” mode was excellent.

I have used bed slingers, coreXY and pseudo core XY (Ender 5 style printers) over the years and while keeping the print bed fixed makes sense theoretically in practice it comes down to the implementation details.

To that end I currently recommend the following printers depending our your use case:

  • Low cost entry level Solvol SV06, Prusa Style Direct Extruder at a fraction of the price

  • Plug and play, very fast printer Ankermake M5 – I think this printer will get better over time as AnkerMake optimizes the firmware and slicer

  • High Temperature Ender 3 S1 Pro or Ender 5 S1 (if an enclosure is necessary)

  • Large Volume with High Speed FLSun V400. There Klipper implementation is not perfect but overall Klipper is very impressive.

All of these printers are direct extruders and then all have PTFE hot ends except for the S1 Pro and the Ender 5 S1. I prefer PTFE hot ends for most casual users since they string a lot less.

Thank you all for the replies. It sounds like mechanical architectures can be tuned to get higher speed. I am not planning production, mostly I am just not comfortable letting a printer run overnight, so i contstrain any prints to print while I am generally around the house. I know there are video reviews of all those printers and will watch them again. My Ender 3 has been doing fine, but when it has a problem I tend to burn a day or more with trouble shooting it (usually undoing what I screwed up). Thanks again for taking the time to reply to the post.

It seems that Microcenter (in KS) has the Ender 5 S1 for $389 in stock. Seems like a fab deal. One question: I saw on the Auroratech channel a review of this printer and she modified it with a Sonic controller running Klipper. Am i correct in understanding that Klipper is an alternative to Marlin? Is this a new trend or a one off that might get outnumbered by the Marlin usage and not have the same community support?

Funny you should mention the Aurora Tech review. I have that printer. She reviewed a Reborn 2 printer by Flying Bear. It is a CoreXY kit that goes for around $450 (sometimes with free shipping). With a 325x325x350mm build volume, it’s much larger than the printers mentioned in this thread, and prints up to 150 mm/s using Marlin (advertised). Aurora Tech’s video converting the printer to Klipper was unnecessarily complicated. The stock motherboard runs Klipper fine (no rewiring needed).

Klipper differs from Marlin in that the interpretation of GCODE commands is done by a second processor, a small board computer (SBC) like a Raspberry Pi. To quote from an All3DP article on Klipper:

"Klipper utilizes the extra computing power to essentially make a pre-developed plan for G-code commands, so your printer [CPU] only needs to carry out the commands, not process them. This is possible because stepper motors move small amounts in individual steps. Klipper uses the extra computing power and built-in algorithms to better calculate step movement times for motor actions, achieving movement precision of 25 microseconds or lower.

Scheduling movements with an external computer also allows your machine to can carry out more actions in a given period. Klipper can achieve 175,000 steps per second on 8-bit mainboards and as high as 500,000 steps per second on newer, 32-bit options. These speeds are much faster than what you would be getting with Marlin firmware, and many users have taken note of this."

Well, I was going to write more about the differences, but that All3DP article already has a nice comparison and I suggest you check out that whole thing. I would emphasize that Marlin has broader compatibility than Klipper with printer motherboards and displays (e.g., I run the Reborn 2 without its display using a web interface because the printer’s Makerbase display requires some soldering and rewiring to make it work). And, there are some printer motherboards that use proprietary bootloaders (looking at you Monoprice MP10 and Lerdge) which means the manufacturer has to supply the Klipper firmware.

If anything, I think Klipper usage is growing as it has more tools to handle problems that occur when printing at high speeds. But, Marlin currently dominates use and it also continues to improve, such as the addition of input shaping in a recent release.


Thanks for the Klipper information and the article link and interesting read. The Auroratech video I viewed was a Sonic upgrade to the Ender 5 V1. Here is the link: Ender 5 S1 + Sonic pad Klipper firmware The ultimate hobbyist 3D printer? 250mm/s 2000 acceleration - YouTube

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Apologies. Clearly, I need more coffee in the morning. Have you seen her latest video on the Anycubic Kobra 2? Nice to see more and more speed and features on printers.