Elegoo Neptune 2s WiFi Install and Setup

Elegoo Neptune 2S WiFi Install & Setup

Setting up the Makerbase MKS Robin WiFi module on your Elegoo Neptune 2s (and other Elegoo models) is relatively simple, but will require disassembly of some of your 3D printer, and a little bit of technical knowledge. You will be getting into the innards of your beloved 3D printer for this process. For many of us that has already happened many times now from blow outs, repairs, and general “upgrades”. Venture forward at your own risk.

I purchased my first WiFi Module about 2 weeks after having my first Neptune 2s. Due to the wonderful clear instructions I was not able to find online, I spent about 5 hours just to get it working. Once I did, it has worked reliably for almost 2 months now. I had the opportunity to pick up a second Neptune 2S, and I immediately ordered another wifi module. Second Wifi install and setup took me about 20 min.

Elegoo Neptune 2S WiFi Setup Header

Will It work with Non Elegoo Neptune 3D Printers?

This is a hard question to answer as there are several factors that go into making a WiFi add-in module work. Mainly, the manufacturer of the 3D printer itself has to have made support for it. In theory two different brand 3D printers that use the same MKS Robin Nano mainboard in it should work, but that is if the manufacturer added that support to the firmware before shipping to customers. No support in the firmware they provide, no WiFi module….

Now, you may be able to find community support with a “hacked” or community firmware, and there are several out there that work extremely well for the Neptune 2S that add great features. Understand that you may void your warranty, or may break something if not careful. It is an option that may get WiFi working on non-supported 3d printer models. This article will not cover community firmware, only the Elegoo Neptune provided firmware.

Another factor for not being able to answer this question is simple: As of writing this, I currently only own Elegoo Neptune 2S 3D printers. I can theorize that it may work on other brands, but I can’t know for sure if I don’t attempt and go though the install and troubleshooting process to verify. This is where your community forums and social media groups will be a great asset. I strongly advise searching them out and joining them.

Step 1 – Order the Wifi Module

I have found two locations to purchase the Makerbase Robin WiFi v1.0 module. There are probably more, but for this writing I will keep things simple. Amazon has them, but a few YouTubers made videos about “$10 WiFi Upgrade” and overnight the prices shot to $20 and up. Luckily they have settled back down to $14 or so. If you like Amazon’s return policy, then this is still a good option. Aliexpress is where I purchased mine from. Prices have always been $8 with $1 shipping, the only down side is shipping is usually 3 weeks as they are coming from China. Both of my WiFi modules from Aliexpress arrived with no issues and worked flawlessly.

Makerbase Robin WiFi v1.0 Module

Makerbase Robin WiFi v1.0 Module

Amazon: Makerbase Robin v1.0 WiFi

Aliexpress: Makerbase MKS Robin WIFI V1.0

Step 2: Format your Micro SD Card

This is more of a precautionary step, but for some people this was the only way they could update their firmware successfully. From unplugging and plugging in your micro sd card, sometimes an error happens in the format of the drive, and this error can cause read issues. This could cause a firmware update to freeze during the flash and not complete. This step is simple, backup any GCODE files that you might want to save to your computer. Do not concern yourself with any of the *.CUR or other files that may exist on the micro sd card. These will get replaced after the firmware update step.

Once you have any GCODE files saved, just format the micro SD card as FAT32 with default format settings. Now you are ready to copy the updated firmware files to the SD card and proceed.

(Side Note): If at any time you are having read issues, or can not format your micro sd card, it may be time to replace it. The ones supplied with your printer are based on low cost, and I had one fail within the first week. If this happens, I highly recommend replacing it with a good quality 8GB or smaller (can not be over 8GB for these printers) micro sd card. I personally use the Sandisk Industrial cards due to having great results with them in high temp environments.

Step 3: Update your Neptune 2S

As of writing this, both of my 3D printers have the v1.3 mainboard with the v2.02 firmware. So follow the instructions on Elegoo’s website on updating firmware. The steps are pretty straight forward, as you will need to verify which board you have, and update with the appropriate firmware file. You will copy the firmware file “elegoo.bin” and config file “elegoo.txt” to the micro sd card and proceed to boot up with your freshly formatted micro sd card with firmware update files.

Later in these steps you will need the “elegoo.txt” config file again, so keep it handy. It will get changed on the micro sd card during the firmware update, so keep a copy on your computer until after the final step.

In general, here are the firmware update steps:

  1. Power off your Neptune 2S
  2. Unplug your micro sd card from your printer and plug the micro sd card into your computer
  3. Backup any GCODE files you want to save off your micro sd card onto your computer
  4. Format micro sd card with FAT32
  5. Copy the correct elegoo.bin and elegoo.txt to the micro sd card
  6. Unplug micro sd card from computer and plug into your 3D printer
  7. Power on 3D printer and allow firmware update magic to happen.
  8. Verify firmware has updated by to going to “Settings” -> “About” and verify firmware version.
  9. Victory dance as needed.

Step 4: Install the WiFi Module

Now we get to the part where you will need to get to the bottom of your printer do a little disassembly. Power off your 3D printer and position it to remove the bottom panel. Be careful flipping your printer over, as too much jarring may do damage to one of your axis or cables. There is a panel on the bottom of the printer with 8 screws, you will need to remove those. 1 of the screws is shorter than the rest for the thin corner, please be mindful of its placement.

Neptune 2S WiFi socket location

Neptune 2S WiFi socket location

Next you will need to locate the black and green socket where the wifi module plugs in. You will notice that the colors of the pin locations on the module are black and green as well. All you have to do is line up the colors and pins, and plug in. I have read some articles that you want to remove the big ribbon cable that goes to the display before installation, I did not do this. I was easily able to push the ribbon cable out of the way enough to plug in both modules in both of my printers. The ribbon cable in your printer may be shorter, so your discretion here.

Neptune 2S WiFi socket location

Neptune 2S WiFi socket location

Above is another image of the mainboard and the location of where the WiFi module plugs in. Just make sure all the pins are lined up, and push the wifi module pins into the socket. As long as all of the pins are seated correctly, and the module is pushed in all the way, you are ready to re-install the bottom panel and place your printer back upright.

Step 5: WiFi Firmware

At this point your WiFi module is in, but if you power on your Neptune 2S, you will go to “settings” and not see the WiFi option. That is because there is one more firmware file, and the edited config file you need. On Elegoo’s support page, you will see “Extension – WiFi Module” file link, download that file. At this point you will power off your printer and move your micro sd card back to your computer.

Inside the wifi module download will be “elegooWifi.bin” file, that will need to be copied to your micro SD card. You remember that “elegoo.txt” file I mentioned before? It is time to copy that to the micro sd card again. Once both files have been copied to your micro sd card, open “elegoo.txt” in a text editor.

For the purpose of this, I will recommend using Notepad ++ as it will show you what line you are on and has a host of other features that have made it my go-to text editor for many years.

On line 76 of “elegoo.txt” you will need to change “DISABLE_WIFI 1” to “DISABLE_WIFI 0”. This option will allow the button to show up in Settings so you can see if your printer is connected to your wifi and what IP address it has.

On line 268 of “elegoo.txt” you will need to change “CFG_WIFI_AP_NAME” from “WiFitest” to whatever your WiFi name (SSID) is.

On line 269 of “elegoo.txt” you will need to change “CFG_WIFI_KEY_CODE” from “16881688” to what your WiFi password is.

Elegoo TXT file

This is going to be a preference, but on line 270 there is the option of “CFG_CLOUD_ENABLE” which is set to 1. If you don’t plan on doing any cloud based printing, then you can change this to “0”. Personally I did not want my printers communicating with servers outside of my country, and I was only printing locally from my computer, so I changed this setting. If you would like to work with cloud based 3D printing, then leave this the default setting.

I would highly recommend not changing any other settings in this file, as doing so could cause more issues that you are looking for.

Now that you have made your changes to “elegoo.txt” on the SD card, save the file. Now you are ready to move the SD card back to your printer and power it back on. At this point you will get another firmware update screen on boot up which should only take a min.

Step 6: Verify WiFi Access

Now your 3D printer should be booted up and you can verify that your printer is now connected to your WiFi network. At the home screen of your Neptune 2S, click on settings, and a “WiFi” button should be an option. Click on that, and it will show you what WiFi SSID it is connected to, and what IP address it has. You will need this IP address later for Cura.

Elegoo Neptune 2S WiFi Menu

Elegoo Neptune 2S WiFi Menu Button

If you are not getting the WiFi options icon in Settings, then you may of not saved the “elegoo.txt” correctly, or you may of saved the file before you made the changes. You will need to copy over the “elegoo.txt” file again to your SD card, verify you make all the above config changes and save again. Then make sure your Neptune 2S is powered off, plug in the SD card and power back on and check your WiFi settings.

Step 7: Configure Cura

At this point your 3D printer has an IP address on your network, and biw you are ready to configure Cura to see the printer across the network. I have tested this with both Elegoo Cura (slightly buggy, but works) and Ultimaker Cura. Load up Cura and go to the Marketplace. Scroll down until you see “MKS Wifi Plugin”. Install this plugin, accept the agreement, and restart Cura.

MKS WiFi Plugin Install MKS WiFi Plugin Install

Now that the plugin is installed, and you have an IP address, you are ready to get Cura to talk with your printer. Load up Cura and at the top of your screen where it says “ELEGOO NEPTUNE 2” click the down symbol, and you will see an option for “Manage Printers”. If you were in here before, you should not notice a new button labeled “MKS WIFI”. Click on “MKS WIFI’ button and the “Connect to Networked Printer” window will open up.

Cura Wifi Config Cura Wifi Config

In the “Connect to Networked Printer” window, click on the “Add” button. You remember the IP address of your 3D printer from earlier, this is where you will enter it. After you have typed in the IP address of your printer, hit “OK”. You will brought back to the “Connect to Networked Printer” window, and if you select the IP address in the window, on the right hand side you will see the IP address, Type, Firmware Version and the IP address. Below all that you will see a “Connect” button. Press the “Connect” button and at the bottom of Cura you should see “Successfully Connect to Printer” pop-up.

Cura Wifi Configuration

If you do not see it connect, or it doesn’t’ seem to work right, fret not, sometimes just closing the program and re-opening it will get it to connect properly. If that doesn’t work, verify the IP address was entered correctly. Also make sure your computer and printer are on the same network and can connect to each other. There are instances where a WiFi and hard line computers may be separated into different networks.

If all is working, after you slice a project, make your appropriate changes, you will now have a “send to printer” option as well as “save to removable drive” option at the bottom right of your screen. It does take a bit of time to transfer the file, but by default your printer will automatically start the warmup process and begin printing as soon as it receives the file. General rule is prep your printer to print, then go to Cura, adjust, slice, then send.

Cura Send to Network Printer Cura Send to Network Printer Status

The extra benefit to the “MKS Wifi Plugin” is now the items you print will have an image of showing what it is in the display window.

Victory Dance

I know you are excited, but please remember to re-level and wipe down your bed before your first Wifi print. From moving your printer and putting it on its side to install the wifi module, it is best practice to “make sure”. Last thing you want is your first Wifi print to not adhere well and possibly ruining your happy dance.

TikTok Video:

Mostly posted for my vanity and a little bit more clarification on some of the steps above. Watch at your own risk.

@audiocraz Installing a WiFi module into Printer B. #3dprintingtiktok #3dprinting #elegoo #elegooneptune2s #techtok ♬ original sound – AudioCraZ

Side Notes:

You can run multiple 3D printers via WiFi successfully, but there are a few issues. On several occasions I have had both Ultimaker Cura and Elegoo Cura crash while switching between printers. This doesn’t always happen, I would roughly say 20% of the time. I have separate profiles for each printer and each one is configured with the two IP addresses. When switching between printers, Cura may just crash. Once I relaunch it will be connected to the printer I was switching to. A bit of a frustration, but nothing  but hopefully things will get better over time with Cura updates.

At the time of writing this, Elegoo Cura is using Cura 4.8.0. This version does have a few visual quirks on the “Monitor” page while working with the MKS Wifi Plugin. Sending print jobs works flawlessly but unfortunately the “Monitor” page does not display correctly. This is not an issue with Ulitmaker Cura 4.13.0 that I am running as well.

There is also the option of setting up wireless printing with a Raspberry Pi and OctoPrint. It has a wide 3D printer support, and from what I have seen works well. The down side is that it is a little more costly (you have to pay for a raspberry pi, a case for the raspberry pi, and a micro sd card) and this configuration is a bit more technical as well, but still an option many users enjoy.

Items listed above on Amazon:

Disclaimer:

Links to Amazon are Associate links. If you wish to purchase any of the items listed above, I would greatly appreciate using the links provided above. They help me to provide more content and reviews. As always, happy printing and thank you!

Updated: February 18, 2022 — 8:41 am

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