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I am a complete noob when it comes to the 3d printing world. I just finished assembling my printer and I plug it into my computer with the included usb cable and nothing happens. My computer does recognize the printer being plugged in but it just says "unrecognized device in com 4". Nothing else past that. Somebody please help me with the following steps that need to be taken to get my CPU talking with my printer.

1 Answer 1

Your question addresses (USB) computer connection, so that will be addressed in this answer. For connection to the printer, you need 2 things (apart from the apparent things as computer, printer and cable):

  1. A working CH340 driver installed on the computer for USB communication with the board,
  2. a piece of software to talk to the computer at a bit transfer rate the printer understands.

The cheap Arduino based boards rely on the CH340 chip for USB communication. You should check whether you have correctly installed this driver. These drivers are erroneous and prone to cause problems. Sometime re-installation works, once did work for me.

The SD card supplied by Anet contains a folder (on my SD card: .\A8\A8资料\Software\CH340G Drive) with the installer file of the driver. Once installed properly, you should be able to connect various applications to the A8, provided you use the correct baud rate of 115200.

All this said, are you asking the correct question? Why do you need to connect to a computer, as you can print just fine by putting sliced .stl files (.gcode files) onto the SD card (when inserted in the computer using the adapter) and reinsert the card again in the printer to select the file using the menu buttons of the printer. Printing from SD card is considered safer then printing via the computer over USB as the print will stop when the PC is shut down or crashes.