Longer LK4 Pro
The Longer L4K Pro is a little-known 3D printer, less known than other brands that have been allowed more lighting in recent months. And yet, this printer is very present through its clone, the Alfawise U30 Pro, which I’ve already told you about in the past.
The U30 Pro I know it well, it’s my favorite 3D printer. It is very efficient, easy to set up, quiet, simple to use and always ready to go. Today I print mainly with it and I don’t regret my investment at all. But Alfawise is not the manufacturer of this printer, the real “daddy” of the solution is Longer. The U30 Pro is nothing more than a Longer L4K Pro rebadged with the Alfawise brand name.
The Longer L4K Pro is therefore identical in every way, it is a fairly classic desk model with a footprint of 40.2 cm wide by 42.5 cm deep and 50.5 cm high. It offers a classic printing area: maximum 22 cm wide by 25 cm high. Enough to print consequent objects with several types of filaments. The nozzle of the printer rises to 250°C max, which is sufficient to handle PLA filaments, ABS and “Wood” type materials. Filaments more or less loaded with wood particles for a rendering similar to a sculpture in the material. The fineness of the layers is classic with a possible choice of 0.1 to 0.4 mm and printing speeds that can theoretically reach 120 mm/sec. In practice, exceeding 80 mm/s can be hazardous, it is also possible to go down to 30 mm/s.
The printer offers an aluminium heating plate (100°C) covered by a glass plate that provides a very good surface for hanging1. The nozzle and the overall operation of the printer are classic with a step-by-step installation explained by a rather clear paper documentation. It is also possible to find online videos showing the step-by-step operation for the Longer L4K Pro or the classic L4K.
The strong points of this model are numerous, starting with an electric circuit entirely in 24 volts instead of 12 volts. The heating operations of the tray and the nozzle are much faster in 24 volts and the printer is easier to use thanks to this. The presence of a large color touch screen seems at first quite gadgetary but it is well thought out and efficient. It allows an immediate grip and above all makes the user’s daily life easier. To level the plate for example, a menu allows to quickly move the nozzle on 5 control points in order to carry out the calibration operation without problems.
The print selection menus and the print control are also clearly legible, which is quite pleasant in everyday life. The temperatures of the different elements are clearly displayed, the printing times, the different settings, all this is very readable. The software part of the printer is Open Source Marlin and the motherboard can be driven by an external USB solution like an Octoprint mount. The modifiable set, taking advantage of many developments, is above all very efficient and pleasant.
We find the great classics in terms of printing: for example, we can resume a printing interrupted by a power failure, the Longer L4K Pro also allows to detect a filament end and to restart the printing once full. Small details which, on a printer at this price, are frankly welcome.
But what is perhaps most interesting on this model for private individuals is the presence of quality electronics in the machine. There are TMC 2208 drivers that will allow a more precise and smoother nozzle movement, without the noisy jerks of the basic electronics. This brings a better print quality but also a much quieter operation. If the ventilation remains strong, although it is possible to replace the fans delivered with higher-end and quieter models, the noise of movement of the whole unit almost completely disappears compared to a conventional printer. It may not sound like much, but these are the noises that are most noticeable in use. If you lock your printer in a cupboard or cabinet, in a garage or workshop, the noise of the fans will be very muffled by a partition or a door. On the other hand, the movements of your nozzle will remain audible on an entry-level model. With the Longer L4K Pro, they will be perfectly inaudible. It is a real luxury in an apartment, a great comfort in a house as well, we do not hesitate to launch a printing project of several hours with this type of model.
Another positive point is that community is important. Between the Longer models and the Alfawise models, these printers are very popular, spare parts are numerous, their motherboards are identical and developments are common. There is also a ton of possible improvements for their use. For example, the basic design of the Longer L4K Pro offers a MicroSD card reader and a USB type-B port, just like on paper printers.
Longer LK4 Pro Prices
Specification: Longer LK4 Pro
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