When comparing Makerbot PLA Filament vs eSUN PETG Filament, the Slant community recommends Makerbot PLA Filament for most people. In the question“What are the best filaments for 3D printing?” Makerbot PLA Filament is ranked 2nd while eSUN PETG Filament is ranked 8th. The most important reason people chose Makerbot PLA Filament is:
Since this filament was designed to be used with high-end, expensive Makerbot hardware, its mechanical parameters exceed the standards for regular PLA plastic, as shown in the raw [datasheet](https://eu.makerbot.com/fileadmin/Inhalte/Support/Datenblatt/MakerBot_R__PLA_and_ABS_Strength_Data.pdf) of the material. It's properties are very well balanced; the filament is quite ductile, meaning tensile strength is a bit higher than that of standard PLA, while maintaining the same high material elasticity. While it isn’t a groundbreaking filament, you can be assured that there is no aspect of this product that can be considered substandard.
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Pro Above average mechanical parameters
Since this filament was designed to be used with high-end, expensive Makerbot hardware, its mechanical parameters exceed the standards for regular PLA plastic, as shown in the raw datasheet of the material. It's properties are very well balanced; the filament is quite ductile, meaning tensile strength is a bit higher than that of standard PLA, while maintaining the same high material elasticity. While it isn’t a groundbreaking filament, you can be assured that there is no aspect of this product that can be considered substandard.
Pro Health risks are lower than with ABS
3D printing PLA poses fewer health risks than ABS.
Pro Has proven its value with the 3D printing community
As most Makerbot products, this filament has earned some popularity within the 3D printing community. While Makerbot recommends this filament with their own 3D printers, plenty of people have used this filament for non-Makerbot printers and are quite satisfied with the quality of the results.
Pro No heated bed required
Using a PLA filament does not require your 3D printer to have a heated bed.
Pro Available in 10 different colors
This filament is available in 10 different colors, all of which offer consistent quality and looks.
Pro Proper packaging protects filament from mechanical damage, air and humidity
Makerbot’s packaging keeps the filament inside safe from damage The thick cardboard box protects from mechanical damage while the vacuum-sealed film (together with an included silica pack) keeps the filament safe from air and humidity. This is very important, as filaments absorb water extremely fast.
Pro Can safely be used for applications where it comes in contact with food
This filament can safely be used to create e food and drink containers or parts for food production lines (like conveyor belt parts, for example ), unlike ABS, PLA or other popular 3D printing filament materials. PETG filament is food safe, as there are no potential hazards to food or human body while in contact with this material. In fact, PETG is a modified version of PET, which is a material widely used for food packaging.
Pro Simultaneously strong and flexible
PETG is pretty much as strong as ABS (in terms of direct load) and nearly as flexible as PLA, combining the best characteristics of these two materials. On top of that, printing PETG is easier than printing ABS, since it does not require a heated bed and has better layer adhesion.
Pro Can be used with nearly every 3D printer
This filament is available for both 1.75 mm and 3.0 mm extruders. It also does not require a heating bed when printing, although it’s better if you have one. It can also be printed using standard brass nozzles.
Con PLA's applications for 3D printing are quite limited
In terms of 3D printing applications, PLA is very limited. While it’s great for general prototyping and poses fewer health risks, it cannot withstand hot or humid environments: it degrades dramatically when exposed to direct sunlight, high temperatures (above 60ºC) or water. It is way less durable and flexible than materials like ABS and lacks chemical resistance. You need to be aware of what the limits are when using this material.
Con Impossible to be used with a 3.0 mm extruder
If your printer has a 3.0 mm extruder, you won't be able to use this filament, since it only comes in 1.75mm form. For Makerbot, this is justifiable, since all of their hardware uses 1.75 mm.
Con Filament packaging provides proper protection
The material comes in a spool packed inside a vacuum film, with an included desiccant. All this is packaged inside a tough cardboard box, which keeps everything safe during shipping and storage.
Con Finding the perfect setting takes some time and effort
While this filament is easy to print, getting to the "optimal results" level requires extra work. Because temperatures vary within the extruder used, finding the perfect printer settings will, most likely, take several attempts.
Con Material specifications sheet available only upon request
The material specifications sheet isn't publicly available, but it is possible to request it from regional eSUN distributors. This is a hassle mostly for engineers and those in the academia, who will surely need this, since they will have no choice apart from spending some time and effort to get the specifications sheet. It would be better to have the specs available from the get-go.