Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money?

There are different types of 3D printers on the market. As such, it is impossible to cover all of them to find out which is the best 3D printer for the money.

Still, given that most of our readers are DIY hobbyists, educational institutions, and small businesses, we decided to focus on desktop 3D printers that work with either FDM or SLA technologies.

Of course, even in the desktop segment, printers are very different in terms of price, purpose, and capabilities. Therefore, we will divide this review into several categories to try to create the most complete picture.

Let’s get started.

Best 3D Printer for the Money

Best 3D Printer – Overall

1. Original Prusa i3 MK3S

Prusa i3 MK3S

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The Original Prusa i3 MK3 delivers exceptional print quality straight out of the box. The printer has an advanced print calibration and monitoring system, ability to print with a variety of materials, and adequate technical support and documentation. There is also a large community of users of the 3D printer.

This is one of the best 3D printers under $1000 and also one of the best build kit printers.

Our Comments: The price of the Original Prusa i3 MK3 is definitely high for an entry-level printer. Moreover, despite the high rating of this model, it has a key drawback; an open print chamber. As a result, the printer cannot print high-temperature plastics, such as nylon, polycarbonate, carbon and others. Also, printing large ABS models will be difficult.

A good alternative to the Original Prusa i3 MK3 is the Anycubic Mega-S. The printer is affordable, produces excellent prints, has high quality components and very few low level factory defects.

Watch the video review of the printer below.

Original Prusa i3 MK3s vs Anycubic Mega S Comparison

Original Prusa i3 MK3S Anycubic Mega-S
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type ABS, Nylon, PETG, PLA ABS, PLA, Flex, PETG, etc.
Print area size 250 х 210 х 210 mm 210 x 210 x 205 mm
Number of extruders one one
Layer thickness from 50 microns from 50 microns
Heated platform Yes Yes
Print speed up to 200 mm/sec 20-100 mm/sec
XY Positioning Accuracy 0.01mm 0.0125 mm
Z positioning accuracy 0.0025 mm 0.002 mm
Connection interface USB, SD card SD card, data cable
The cost Check Price Check Price

Other notable competing entry-level 3D printers include:

2. Phrozen Sonic Mini

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 1

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We also recommend the Phrozen Sonic Mini because it is reliable, easy to use and fast. With this model, Phrozen managed to achieve a very surprising result, mixing ease of use with an insanely low price. The printer looks great and prints much faster than its competitors without sacrificing the quality of the printed models.

Our Comments: Despite its tiny size and price of less than $300, this printer can become a complete tool for solving numerous problems. You can even use it in dentistry.

Looking at the budget resin 3D printers available on the market, this printer does well, achieving a print speed of less than 2 seconds per layer. This speed is achieved due to the use of a monochrome LCD matrix and the proprietary ParaLed 2.0 backlight system.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 2

Phrozen Sonic Mini Features

Phrozen Sonic Mini
Printing technology LCD
Material type Photopolymers 405 nm
Print area size 120 x 68 x 130 mm
Light source ParaLED 2.0 Lite
Layer thickness 10-100 microns
Print speed up to 50 mm/h
XY Positioning Accuracy 62 microns
Z positioning accuracy 10 microns
Connection interface USB
The cost Check Price

3. Peopoly Phenom

Peopoly Phenom

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Another printer that we recommend is the Peopoly Phenom. We recommend this printer for its large print area, modular design, and user-friendly interface. Size matters, and this model has a maximum build height of 40 cm. Therefore, you can print objects that are14 times larger than, for example, those printed by the Elegoo Mars.

The large build volume means you can print large objects without the need of separating them into parts. The affordable price and ease of use are also important factors that make the Peopoly Phenom one of the best 3D printers for the money. This model takes desktop resin printing to the next level.

Our Comments: Peopoly is Hong Kong-based 3D printer manufacturer known for its high quality resin 3D prniters. The Peopoly Phenom stands out for its large build volume. However, the printer is quite expensive. Read our full Peopoly Phenom 3D printer review.

There is indeed a demand for large size desktop resin printers and other 3D printer manufacturers are also in the foray. Examples of competing 3D printers include the Phrozen Transform , which also has a large 290 x 160 x 400mm print chamber, and and LCD display with 4K resolution.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 3

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Below is an example of a print made using the Phrozen Transform 3D printer.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 4

Peopoly Phenom vs Phrozen Transform Features

Peopoly Phenom Phrozen Transform 
Printing technology LCD LCD
Material type Photopolymers Photopolymers
Print area size 276 x 155 x 400 mm 290 x 160 x 400 mm
XY Positioning Accuracy 72 microns 76 microns
Layer thickness 20 microns 10-100 microns
LCD resolution 12.5″4K 13.3″4K
The cost  Check Price Check Price

You can find out more about Phenom 3D printer in our Phenom 3D printer review article.

4. Creality CR-10S Pro V2

Creality CR-10S Pro V2

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The Creality CR-10S Pro V2 stands out for its elegant and thoughtful design, superior print quality and large build area. The printer boasts of good wire routing and the control box sits under the print bed for stability during printing as well keep the printer compact.

This printer is easy to build and operate. Other things that make it the best 3D printer for the money include its affordable price, large build volume, and good user experience. This is also easily one of the best 3D printers under $1000.

Our Comments: Creality is the world’s largest manufacturer of 3D printers, and the CR-10 model is one of their bestsellers. The cost of the printer is about $600, which means it’s not a budget 3D printer.  budgetary.

If you are looking for an alternative to the Creality CR-10S Pro V2, get the Wanhao Duplicator 9, which comes in three sizes.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 5

Creality CR-10S Pro V2 vs Wanhao D9/300 Features

Creality CR-10S Pro V2 Wanhao D9/300
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type ABS, PLA, Flex PLA, PETG, FLEX
Print area size 300 x 300 x 400 mm 300 x 300 x 400 mm
Number of extruders

one

one

Layer thickness 100-400 microns 100-400 microns
Extruder temperature ≤260℃ 180-250℃
Heated platform Yes Yes
Print speed ≤180 mm/s 70 mm/sec
Connection interface micro SD, USB SD, USB
The cost Check Price Check Price

Read the full Creality CR-10S Pro V2 review.

Original Prusa Mini

Original Prusa Mini

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The Original Prusa Mini has a removable all metal print bed, quality hardware and software, and produces excellent print results. While its build volume is small, it will fit 90% of the models. you will be making.

This 3D printer is a little more expensive than the competition. However, the quality and performance of the printer justify the price. The compact machine has a rigid construction and will not disappoint you.

Our Comments: This is not the best 3D printer for intermediates. However, beginners on a budget will find it remarkably good. The alternatives to this 3D printer include the  Wanhao i3 Mini and the Wanhao D10.

While the two Wanhao 3D printers are slightly inferior to Prusa in terms of reliability, they are cheaper and allow you to try 3D printing on a budget.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 6

Original Prusa Mini vs Wanhao i3 Mini vs. Wanhao D10 Features

Original Prusa Mini Wanhao i3 Mini Wanhao D10
Printing technology FDM FDM FDM
Material type PLA, PETG, ASA, ABS PLA PLA
Print area size 180 × 180 × 180 mm 120 × 135 × 100 mm 116 x 116 x 125 mm
Number of extruders one one one
Layer thickness 0.05-0.35 mm 0.1-0.4 mm 0.05-0.3 mm
Extruder temperature 280°C 170-260°C
Heated platform no no no
Print speed 200 mm/s 10-70 mm/sec 80 mm/sec
Connection interface USB / LAN, Wi-Fi when upgrading SD, USB SD, USB
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price

In the next section, we’ll look at more pricier 3D printers.

Best 3D Printer Under $1000

1. Elegoo Mars

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 7

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Elegoo Mars is a fantastic budget printer for those who prefer resin printing to FDM printers. Despite the low price, the printer has high precision and XY resolution of 47 microns. This means prints will be smoother, have refined finishing, and will generally look better with almost invisible layer marks.

Our Comments: Elegoo Mars is an excellent resin 3D printer that we’ve tested and recommend. We recently reviewed the machine in detail, describing its features and even printed various models. We were very pleased with what we saw. Read the guide: Elegoo Mars 3D Printer Review.

Nevertheless, we would not call it the absolute best printer under $1000 category. This is because of its competitor, the Phrozen Sonic Mini, which outperforms it in terms of print speed, print quality and price.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 1

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Elegoo Mars vs. Phrozen Sonic Mini Features

Elegoo Mars Phrozen Sonic Mini
Printing technology LCD LCD
Material type Photopolymers 405 nm Photopolymers 405 nm
Print area size 120 x 68 x 155 mm 120 x 68 x 130 mm
Layer thickness 10-200 microns 10-100 microns
Print speed 22.5 mm/h up to 50 mm/h
XY Positioning Accuracy 47 microns 62 microns
Z positioning accuracy 1.25 microns 10 microns
Connection interface USB USB
The cost Check Price Check Price

2. Flashforge Adventurer 3

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 9

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The Chinese company FlashForge has created some of the best budget 3D printers under $1000 in recent years. One of their models, the Adventurer 3, features Wi-Fi and a removable heated print pad.

The printer has a minimum layer thickness of 50 microns and a small print area of ​​150 x 150 x 150 mm. While you cannot print huge models with this 3D printer, you will find it suitable for most tasks. Moreover, its affordable price of makes it attractive.

Our Comments: This printer outperforms other budget 3D printers under $1000. Apart from Wi-Fi, a removable platform and minimum layer thickness, the printer has a built-in webcam, a closed case, a color touchscreen display, a safe, easily removable extruder and a filament end sensor. The print quality is also decent

For more information, read our Flashforge Adventurer 3 review.

Flashforge Adventurer 3 Features

Flashforge Adventurer 3
Printing technology FDM
Material type PLA
Print area size 150 x 150 x 150 mm
Number of extruders one
Layer thickness 0.1-0.4 mm
Extruder temperature up to 240°C
Heated platform up to 100°C
Print speed 10-100 mm/sec
Connection interface USB, Ethernet, Wi-Fi
The cost Check Price

3. Creality CR-10

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 10

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Creality CR-10 is rated by most makers as one of the best budget 3D printers of all time. The printer is manufactured by the Chinese company Creality 3D in various sizes and comes as a build kit that can be assembled in just 45 minutes.

For less than $400, the CR-10 offers 50 micron print quality and has a build volume of 300 x 300 x 400mm. The price and performance make this a perfect choice for beginners.

Our Comments: If you are interested in buying a printer of this class, check the Anycubic Chiron. The printer does more than the Creality, but at a slightly higher price.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 11

Creality CR-10 vs. Anycubic Chiron Features

Creality CR-10 Anycubic Chiron
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type PLA, TPU ABS, PLA, Flex
Print area size 300 х 300 х 400 mm 400 х 400 х 450 mm
Number of extruders one one
Layer thickness from 0.1 mm 0.05-0.3mm
Extruder temperature Up to 250°C Up to 260°C
Heated platform ≤75 ℃ ≤100 ℃
Print speed up to 100 mm/s 20-100 mm/sec
Connection interface SD, USB SD card, data cable
The cost Check Price Check Price

4. Monoprice Select Mini V2

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 12

This is one of the best 3D printers for beginners. The printer has no redundant features. Rather, it just prints what you need it.

You won’t be able to print large models on it since its build size is 120 x 120 x 120 mm. However, for beginners, this should not be a problem. This printer also features in our list of the best 3D printers for kids and education because of its simplicity and low cost. You can buy these printers for the whole class at the price of one more expensive printer like the Ultimaker 2+ or MakerBot Replicator+.

To help newbies, the printer comes with several ready-to-print 3D models and filament to get you started. All in all, the printer is simple, cheap, and ideal for those who are just getting started with 3D printing.

Our Commentary: This 3D printer is marketed by the American company Monoprice, which orders them from Chinese factories under its own brand. Read our Monoprice Select Mini Review for comprehensive details.

If you are looking for an alternative to the Monoprice Select Mini, check the Wanhao i3 Mini or the older Winbo SH-105 model.

Monoprice Select Mini V2 vs. Wanhao i3 Mini Features

Monoprice Select Mini V2 Wanhao i3 Mini
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type PLA PLA
Print area size 120 x 120 x 120 mm 120 × 135 × 100 mm
Number of extruders one one
Layer thickness 0.1-0.3 mm 0.1-0.4 mm
Extruder temperature 230°C 170-260°C
Heated platform no no
Print speed 55 mm/sec 10-70 mm/sec
Connection interface USB / Micro SD card / WiFi SD, USB
The cost  Check Price Check Price

5. Prusa i3 MK3S

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 13

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Growing out of the RepRap enthusiast community, the Prusa i3 MK3S 3D printer has proven itself so well that it has propelled its creator and CEO, Joseph Prusa from a 3D printing fanatic to Forbes magazine’s list of 30 richest entrepreneurs under 30. This is as a result of sales of more than 100,000 of the printers per year worldwide.

Known as the best 3D printer to emerge from the RepRap movement, it weighs only 6.35kg and supports printing from SD cards and USB sticks. Prusa uses a farm of 300 of its printers to print all the plastic parts on the new printers to meet the huge demand for them. You can buy the Prusa printer ready-to-go, or as a build kit for a couple hundred less.

Our Comments: Prusa recently increased its number of printing printers to 1000, and this achievement was honored with an entry into the Guinness Book of Records in 2019. Sales volume in 2019 was over 220,000 printers. This is a fantastic result for a Czech company.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 14

6. Anycubic Photon S Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 15

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The Anycubic Photon S model was released a little later than the first version of the Anycubic Photon and costs a little more, However, it has a number of key improvements over the first model. For example, the Z height has increased by 50 mm. The printer also has a more rigid structure and two X rails that help to reduce vibrations, therefore ensuring print quality is high.

The Photon S has a dual filtration system to reduce odor emissions during printing.

Our Comments: This printer achieved what seems incompatible – low price and improved print quality. However, during testing, we did not highly assess the improvements of the Photon S model compared to the Photon.

Anycubic Photon S Features

Anycubic Photon S
Printing technology LCD
Material type Photopolymers 405 nm
Print area size 115 x 65 x 165 mm
Layer thickness 0.025-0.1 mm
Print speed 20 mm/h
XY Positioning Accuracy 47 microns
Z positioning accuracy 1.25 micron
Connection interface USB
The cost Check Price

7. Creality Ender 3

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 16

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The Ender 3 is the cheapest printer on our list and one of the best 3D printers under $200. The printer follows the footsteps of the CR-10 and is a very powerful machine for the money.

This printer has a heated print bed and comes as an assembly kit that can be assembled in less than an hour. If you intend to spend less than $200 on a 3D printer, you cannot expect impeccable quality. However. the Ender 3 prints honestly well although it cannot compete with printers in the mid-range $3,000.

This is a good printer for beginners. If you are a 3D printing enthusiast, you can make a bunch of different improvements and modifications to achieve better printing results.

Our Comments: The Ender 3 is one of the best-selling 3D printers for beginners. When you have the printer, you can independently figure out all the intricacies of the design of a 3D model. And with some  enthusiasm, you can achieve good printing results.

However, this printer has to be assembled. If you want a comparable printer that is ready to print out of the box, get the Anycubic Mega S.

Creality Ender 3 Anycubic Mega S
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type ABS, PLA, etc. ABS, PLA, Flex, etc.
Print area size 235x235x250 mm 210x210x205 mm
Number of extruders one one
Layer thickness 0.1-0.4 mm 0.05-0.3mm
Extruder temperature Up to 255 ° C Up to 260 ° C
Heated platform ≤110 ℃ ≤110 ℃
Print speed 180 mm / sec 100 mm / sec
Connection interface SD SD card, data cable
The cost Check Price Check Price

8.  XYZprinting Da Vinci Mini 

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 17

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The XYZprinting Da Vinci Mini 3D printer is the main competitor to the Monoprice Select Mini V2. Its print area is 30 mm larger on each axis, and the functionality corresponds to the price. This unit is also ideal for beginners.

The minimum layer thickness of the printer is 100 microns. This is not the best compared to other models. However, it’s reasonable given that this printer costs under $200.

Our Comments: If you are looking for an alternative to this XYZprinting model, get the Wanhao D10 3D printer.

XYZprinting Da Vinci Min vs. Wanhao D10 Features

XYZprinting Da Vinci Mini Wanhao D10
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type PLA PLA
Print area size 150 x 150 x 150 mm 116 x 116 x 125 mm
Number of extruders one one
Layer thickness 0.1 mm 0.05-0.3 mm
Heated platform no no
Print speed 100 mm/s 80 mm/sec
Connection interface Wi-Fi, USB SD, USB
The cost Check Price Check Price

9. QIDI Tech X-Pro

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 18

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Leaving the 3D printers under $500, we get QIDI Tech X-Pro. This is a dual extruder printer with a large intutive 4.3″ touch screen that is easy to operate. The printer can be connected via Wi-Fi and can also print from a USB stick.

The QIDI X-Pro stands out from the crowd of similar printers for its print quality at a low price. The unit features a a curved metal printing plate that makes it easier to remove the model after printing with minimal damage. This improves the finish quality of the surface.

Unlike other cheap printers, the X-Pro has a closed print chamber. This means it can maintain a more stable temperature inside, reducing the possibility of the model separating and tearing it off the table.

Our Comments: If you are looking for alternatives to the QIDI X-Pro, check out the FlashForge Dreamer and Flashforge Inventor models. These are more technically advanced and come at nearly the same price range.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 19

QIDI Tech X-Pro vs. FlashForge Dreamer vs. FlashForge Inventor Features

QIDI Tech X-Pro FlashForge Dreamer FlashForge Inventor
Printing technology FDM FDM FDM
Material type PLA, ABS ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG
Print area size 230 x 150 x 150 mm 230 x 150 x 140 mm 230 x 150 x 160 mm
Number of extruders 2 2 2
Layer thickness 100-500 microns 50-400 microns 50-400 microns
Extruder temperature 250°C 240°C 240°C
Heated platform 110°C 120°C 120°C
Connection interface USB, Wifi, SD card USB, Wifi, SD card USB, Wifi, SD card
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price

10. Flashforge Creator Pro

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 20

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Flashforge Creator Pro is one of the best cheap 3D printers on the market. With two extruders, it is ideal for those looking for a budget printer with the ability to print on a variety of materials, including models that need to be printed with soluble supports.

The printer has a minimum layer thickness of 100 microns and a build area of ​​225 x 145 x 150 mm. The large build area means you can print whatever model you want. This is a safe and reliable printer that comes at a cheap price.

Our Comments: Flashforge Creator Pro is a great budget dual-extruder 3D printer.

FlashForge Creator Pro Features

FlashForge Creator Pro
Printing technology FDM
Material type ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG
Print area size 227 x 148 x 150 mm
Number of extruders 2
Layer thickness 100-400 microns
Extruder temperature 240°C
Heated platform 120°C
Print speed 10-100 mm / sec
Connection interface USB, SD card
The cost Check Price

Best 3D Printers Between $1000 – $3000

1. Lulzbot Mini 2

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 21

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Many manufacturers who started making opensource-based 3D printers later abandoned this idea when their business grew. However, the American manufacturer, Lulzbot, remained loyal to the opensource community.

Lulzbot has cemented its reputation as one of the best 3D printer manufacturers in the world, and the Lulzbot Mini 2 continues that tradition. The printer comes with a heated bed, USB connection, and has a minimum layer thickness of 50 microns.

The build volume of the unit is 160 x 160 x 180 and the printing speed is up to 300 mm/s. This 3D printer can print soft plastics without problems with feeding the filament.

Our Comments: The Lulzbot Mini is quite expensive compared to other printers in it’s capability range. If you are looking for alternatives, check out the  Picaso 3D Designer X, FlashForge Guider II and the TierTime UP Box +.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 22

Lulzbot Mini 2 vs. Picaso 3D Designer X vs. FlashForge Guider II vs. TierTime Up Box + Features

Lulzbot Mini 2 Picaso 3D Designer X FlashForge Guider II TierTime UP Box +
Printing technology FDM FDM FDM FDM
Material type ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG, PEEK ABS, PLA, Flex, PETG ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG
Print area size 160 x 160 x 180 mm 200 x 200 x 210 mm 280 x 250 x 300 mm 255 x 205 x 205 mm
Number of extruders one one one one
Layer thickness 0.05-0.4 mm from 0.01 mm 0.05-0.4 mm 0.1-0.4 mm
Extruder temperature 290 ° C 410 ° C 240 ° C
Heated platform Yes Yes Yes Yes
Print speed 300 mm/sec 100 cm3/ 10-200 mm/sec 10-130 cm3/h
Connection interface USB, SD card Ethernet, USB Ethernet, USB, Wifi USB, Wifi
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price Check Price

2. Dremel Digilab 3D45

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 23

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Dremel has nearly 100 years of history and has entered the 3D printing market with some great printers. The Dremel 3D45 3D Printer impresses with its large print area of ​​255 x 155 x 170 mm. The unit can also print a wide range of materials, including ABS, PLA, nylon and PETG.

This printer has a  direct extruder, enclosed chamber and heated print bed that ensures good quality prints. The heated print bed also reduces the risk of the model getting damaged when being removed.

This printer is designed for Dremel’s proprietary filament, which is super easy to use. The printer will automatically set the correct settings of the filament. However, if you wish, you can also use materials from other manufacturers.

The printer achieves a minimum layer thickness of 50 microns. It is also reliable and rarely fails when printing with PLA plastic.

Our Comments: Since the Dremel 3D45 is quite an expensive printer, if you are looking for comparable alternatives, the FlashForge Guider IIs and FlashForge Creator 3 models should be on your list.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 24

Dremel Digilab 3D45 vs. FlashForge Guider IIs vs. FlashForge Creator 3 Features

Dremel Digilab 3D45 FlashForge Guider IIs FlashForge Creator 3
Printing technology FDM FDM FDM
Material type ABS, PLA, Nylon ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG
Print area size 255x152x170 mm 280x250x300 mm 300x250x200 mm
Number of extruders one one 2
Layer thickness 50-300 microns 50-400 microns 50-400 microns
Extruder temperature 280 ° C 300 ° C 300 ° C
Heated platform 100 ° C 120 ° C 120 ° C
Connection interface USB, Wi-Fi and Ethernet USB, Wi-Fi and Ethernet USB, Wi-Fi and Ethernet
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price

3. Makerbot Replicator +

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 25

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MakerBot has produced some of the best 3D printers in recent years, and this model is no exception. The MakerBot Replicator + prints from 20 to 400 microns thick via USB cable or from SD card. The unit can print PLA, PVA, PETG and other materials.

This 3D printer stands out for its print quality, stability and a build volume of 295 x 195 x 165mm.

The Makerbot Replicator + is more suitable for professional applications while the more expensive Makerbot Method is suitable for industrial use.

Our Comments: While versatile, the MakerBot Replicator + is an model, which has been released since with some modifications. If you are looking for more versatile printers that can print with different materials and have dual extruders, we recommend models such as the Raise3D Pro2+ , Picaso 3D Designer X Pro , Raise3D E2, and FlashForge Creator 3 .

Makerbot Replicator + vs. Raise3D Pro2 vs. Picaso 3D Designer X Pro vs. Raise3D E2 vs. FlashForge Creator 3 Features

Makerbot Replicator + Raise3D Pro2 + Picaso 3D Designer X Pro Raise3D E2 FlashForge Creator 3
Printing technology FDM FDM FDM FDM FDM
Material type PLA, PETG PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon, Ultran PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG
Print area size 295 x 195 x 165 mm 305 x 305 x 300 mm 200 x 200 x 210 mm 330 x 240x 240 mm 300 x 250 x 200 mm
Number of extruders one 2 one 2 2
Layer thickness from 100 microns from 10 microns 10-250 microns 20-250 microns 50-400 microns
Extruder temperature 160-190°C 300°C 410°C 300°C 300°C
Connection interface USB, Ethernet, Wifi LAN, USB, Wi-Fi USB, Ethernet LAN, USB, Wi-Fi USB, Wi-Fi and Ethernet
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price Check Price Check Price

4. ZMorph VX

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 26

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The ZMorph FAB is an adorable, versatile 3D printer. This is not only a dual extruder 3D printer, but also a CNC router and laser engraver, 3-in-one device or MFP (multi-functional printer), just like the Snapmaker A350 2.0 is. The printer comes with interchangeable print heads that allow it to be easily transformed.

Despite the additional options, the 3D printer is of good quality. It can print various materials and its build volume measures 250 x 235 x1 65 mm. .

Our Comments: Multi Functional 3D Printers are not new. However, the Zmorph is among the best there is. Still, in reality, you get an average 3D printer, a CNC milling cutter, and an engraver at quite a higher price.

For this money, you can buy an excellent 3D printer and still have enough for a good desktop router and engraver.

5. BCN3D Sigmax R19

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 27

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This 3D printer from the Spanish company BCN3D follows the original Sigma R19 model. A dual extruder printer with a huge build area of ​​420 x 297 x 210mm, the Sigmax can print in a wide variety of materials including ABS, HIPS, Nylon, Polycarbonate and others.

Notable features of the Sigmax, such as “duplicate” and “mirror mode” make it the best choice for small batch production. The printer is neat, achieves a minimum layer thickness of 50 microns, and is easy to operate through its touchscreen display.

Our Comments: The Sigmax R19 is one of the first printers to use IDEX technology, with two independent extruders. These extruders can be called independent conditionally, since they are located on the same rail. Still, this printer can print one model in duplicate at the same time.

Another advantage of this printer is that it can print models with soluble supports.

An alternative to this printer would be the Raise3D E2, which has a slightly smaller print area but is more affordable.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 28

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BCN3D Sigmax R19 vs. Raise3D E2 Features

BCN3D Sigmax R19 Raise3D E2
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon
Print area size 420 x 297 x 210 mm 330 x 240 x 240 mm
Number of extruders

2

2
Layer thickness from 50 microns 20-250 microns
Extruder temperature 290°C 300°C
Heated platform 100°C 110°C
Connection interface SD / USB LAN, USB, Wi-Fi
The cost Check Price Check Price

Best 3D Printer Between $3000 – $5000

1. Ultimaker 3

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 29

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Ultimaker is a Dutch company that has created some of the best 3D printers in the past few years. The Ultimaker 3 has two extruders, minimum layer thickness of 20 microns, a decent 197 x 215 x 200mm print area and a built-in webcam for remote monitoring of the printing process.

The printer has an auto-alignment system to make sure your prints go smoothly. You can connect to it via Wi-Fi, USB, or Ethernet. This printer is great for precision prototyping.

If you are looking for the best printer in terms of speed, accuracy, ease of use and design and are willing to spend over $3000, then the Ultimaker 3 is the printer for you.

Our Comments: The Ultimaker 3 stands out its high print quality and hassle-free performance. However, Ultimaker printers use 2.85 mm filament, which is a shame because filaments of that size cost more than the regular size filaments of 1.75mm.

Also, this creates limitations due to the small selection of materials that can be printed.

A good alternative to the Ultimaker 3 is the Picaso Designer X Pro, which costs a little less. The X Pro also has a closed chamber, which allows it to print higher-temperature materials.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 30

Ultimaker 3 vs. Picaso Designer X Pro Features

Ultimaker 3 Picaso Designer X Pro
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon, Ultran
Print area size 215 x 215 x 200 mm 200 x 200 x 210 mm
Number of extruders

2

one
Layer thickness from 20 microns 10-250 microns
Heated platform Yes Yes
Connection interface Wi-Fi USB, Ethernet
The cost Check Price Check Price

2. Formlabs Form 3

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 31

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The Formlabs Form 3 is popularly used for both dental and jewelry works because of its amazing accuracy and better speed compared to other printers using other technologies. The improved Form 3 has received a number of improvements over the Formlab Form 2.

Examples of the improvements include LFS technology and a new illumination module that improves the finish quality of the models’ surfaces. The print area has changed by only 10 microns in the Z-axis, but the accuracy has increased to an incredible 25 microns.

You can also use a wide variety of Formlabs resins, as well as resins from other manufacturers.

Our Comments: Formlabs was the first 3D printing company unicorn (its market capitalization exceeds $1 billion). The company’s products are popular all over the world

The Formlabs Form 3 is a little expensive, but this is acceptable since it is meant for professional use. However, despite the company’s assurances that it is possible to use third-party resins with the Formlabs 3, it is in fact very difficult. Moreover, Formlabs resins are about 3 times pricier that that of third parties.

Finally, the printer’s consumables, which include the print tray that has to be frequently replaced, are expensive.

If you are looking for an alternative to the Formlabs 3, check the UNIZ Slash 2, which has a 4K display resolution.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 32

Formlabs Form 3 vs Uniz Slash 2 Features

Formlabs Form 3 UNIZ Slash 2
Printing technology SLA LCD
Material type Photopolymers Photopolymers
Print area size 145 x 145 x 185 mm 192 x 120 x 200 mm
Layer thickness 25-300 microns from 10 microns
XY Positioning Accuracy 25 microns 49.8 microns
Connection interface USB, Ethernet, Wifi USB, Ethernet, Wifi
The cost Check Price Check Price

3. Raise3D Pro2

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 33

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Raise3D is a multi-award winning Chinese 3D printer manufacturer. The previous Raise3D N2 Dual was so good that New York-based Voodoo Manufacturing uses these printers for custom 3D printing.

Raise3D Pro2 comes with two extruders, allowing you to print in two colors or different materials at the same time. This model has a large print area 305 x 305 x 305 mm, can print at a layer thickness of 10 microns, and has a 7-inch touch screen display.

The Raise3D Pro2 is ideal for industrial applications. Therefore, while expensive, the price tag is justified by its capabilities.

Read the full Raise3D Pro2 review.

Our Comments:  The Raise3D printer has great capabilities and is primarily suitable for professional use. The unit performs well when it comes to prototyping, printing products of complex shapes, and printing large size items.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 34

4. Ultimaker S5

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 35

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The Ultimaker  S5 has a large print volume of 330 x 240 x 300mm and comes with various improvements and new features. The unit is an excellent solution for  3D printing prototyping and small batch production,

The size of this model is more suitable for printing large prototypes, such as those common in the automotive industry

Our Comments:  The quality of Ultimaker S5 is beyond doubt, but the downside is that the unit is quite pricey. If you are looking for an affordable alternative, the Raise3D Pro2 model is a great choice. The Raise3D Pro2 has the same set of functions and costs almost half as much as the Ultimake S5.

Ultimaker S5 vs. Raise3D Pro2 Features

Ultimaker S5 Raise3D Pro2
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon
Print area size 330х240х300 mm 305x305x300 mm
Number of extruders

2

2
Layer thickness from 20 microns from 10 microns
Extruder temperature 180-280°C 300°C
Connection interface USB, Ethernet, Wifi LAN, USB, Wi-Fi
The cost Check Price Check Price

Our Choice: Best 3D Printer Under $500

Now, let’s highlight several printers in different categories. To summarize, we’ll combine 3 categories ($200, $300 and $500). In all of these categories, Creality 3D printers shine. The recommended printers in these segments are the the Ender 3, Ender 3 Pro, Ender 5 and Ender 5 Pro. I

These budget 3D printers stand out for a couple of things: ease of assembly, incredible affordability and the ability to achieve good print quality.

Other worthy models in the low-budget price range include the Anycubic i3 Mega, Artillery Genius and Artillery Sidewinder X1.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 36

Our Comments: Creality 3D printers are really good units when in the right hands. This is to say that even with the correct assembly, which at first glance is a simple task, there are various issues that cannot be understood without having a certain experience or not preparing in advance.

The print quality of the printers will largely depend on the build quality and the slicer settings.

Our Choice: Best Budget 3D Printer

For the best budget printer, the Phrozen Sonic Mini is way ahead of the competition.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 1

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Our Choice: Best Resin 3D Printer

For the best resin 3D printer, Formlabs Form 3 takes the crown.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 31

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Other worthy contenders for the best resin 3D printers are Peopoly Phenom printers and the Phrozen Shuffle 4K .

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 39

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The Phrozen Shuffle 4K is a super-duper, high-detail printer that works consistently. It is rigidly constructed from metal parts and although some nuances arise during its use, we like that it’s made from industrial grade components. This is a real workhorse, although it requires adapting to its quirks and glitches.

Our Commentary: This is one of the best phrozen dental 3D printers on the market. The printer is also sought after by jewelers.

The Phrozen Shuffle 4K is easy to use, prints at high accuracy, and can use any materials available on the market. The excellent quality of the finish surface compares favorably with other models, and its price is affordable. We recommend this 3D printer for those who want to try 3D printing, but are afraid to start with a large investment.

Formlabs Form 3 vs. Peopoly Phenom vs. Phrozen Shuffle 4K Features

Formlabs Form 3 Peopoly Phenom Phrozen Shuffle 4K
Printing technology SLA LCD LCD
Material type Photopolymers Photopolymers Photopolymers
Print area size 145 x 145 x 185 mm 276 x 155 x 400 mm 120x68x170 mm
Layer thickness 25-300 microns 72 microns 10-100 microns
XY Positioning Accuracy 25 microns 20 microns 31 microns
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price

Our Choice: Best Large Format 3D Printer

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 33

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The best large format 3D printer for the money is the Raise3D Pro2.

The 3D printer has an advanced software with a professional approach to workflow, fully enclosed housing, and consistently produces high quality prints. The dual extrusion 3D printer also has an exceptionally large printable area measuring 300 x 300 x 600 mm. Therefore, you can print really large objects.

The Raise3D Pro2 also printer with a large number of complex materials. The unit is so reliable that it can print with little or no input from you. You can also monitor the printing process on the 7-inch touchscreen display, as well as remotely using IdeaMaker software.

Our Comments: This 3D printer features a complete set of functions, together with a large build volume.

If you are looking for a budget alternative, check out the Picaso Designer XL printer. The printer has a slightly larger build volume but it comes with only one extruder. The Designer XL would be ideal for tasks that don’t require printing complex objects but where size matters.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 41

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The second printer in this category is the Creality3D CR-10 S5. with a print area of ​​500 x 500 x 500 mm. We have already written about this model above.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 42

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Raise3D Pro2 Plus vs. Picaso Designer XL vs. Creality3D CR-10 S5 Features

Raise3D Pro2 Plus Picaso Designer XL Creality3D CR-10 S5
Printing technology FDM FDM FDM
Material type PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon PLA, Flex
Print area size 305 x 305 x 605 mm 360 х 360 х 610 mm 500 x 500 x 500 mm
Number of extruders 2 1 1
Layer thickness from 10 microns from 10 microns from 100 microns
Extruder temperature 300 ° C 410 ° C
Heated platform Yes Yes Yes
Connection interface LAN, USB, Wi-Fi USB, Ethernet Ethernet, SD
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price

Our Choice: Best 3D Printer with Dual Extruders

The best 3D printer with dual extruders is the Ultimaker S5.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 35

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The only downside of this 3D printer is that it’s expensive. Therefore, if you are on a budget and are looking for a printer with similar capabilities, get the Picaso Designer X Pro. The printer is cheaper, has two extruders, and can print complex models.

Other dual extruder 3D printers that you can consider include the Qidi Tech X-Pro, BCN3D Sigma R19, and Prusa MK3S printers with the MMU2S dual-material upgrade.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 44

Our Comments: The above are not the only dual extruder 3D printers on the market. We’ve also had good results from 3D printers such as the  FlashForge Dreamer and Creator ProRaise3D Pro2 Plus, Dutch Felix Pro 3 printers, as well as printers from Polish manufacturers 3DGence P255 and Zortrax M200 Dual and M300 Dual.

Ultimaker S5 vs. Picaso Designer X Pro vs. QIDI Tech X-Pro vs. BCN Sigma R19 vs. Prusa MK3S Features

Ultimaker S5 Picaso Designer X Pro Qidi Tech X-Pro BCN3D Sigma R19 Prusa MK3S
Printing technology FDM FDM FDM FDM FDM
Material type PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon, Ultran PLA, ABS PLA, ABS, PETG, Flex, Nylon ABS, Nylon, PETG, PLA
Print area size 330 х 240 х 300 mm 200 x 200x 210 mm 230 x 150 x 150 mm 420 x 297 x 210 mm 250 х 210 х 210 mm
Number of extruders 2 1 2 2 1
Layer thickness from 20 microns 10-250 microns 100-500 microns from 50 microns from 50 microns
Extruder temperature 180-280°C 410°C 250°C 290 °C
Connection interface USB, Ethernet, Wifi USB, Ethernet USB, Wifi, SD card SD / USB USB, SD card
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price Check Price Check Price

Our Choice: Best 3-in-1 3D Printer

The best 3-in-1 3D printer is the  ZMorph VX.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 26

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We have already talked about this model earlier, but buying such a printer raises great doubts. The second model in this category is Snapmaker 2.0, which is worth talking about it in more detail.

Snapmaker 2.0

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Snapmaker 2.0 is a second generation MFP with replaceable modules that can operate as a 3D printer, laser engraver and CNC router. The unit is available in three sizes: A150, A250 and A350.

The Snapmaker 2.0 housing and rails are made of metal and the printer is modular. So far, our experience with Snapmaker 2.0 has been excellent. It took us a while to get used to the modular unit but so far we have nothing but good words to say.

Our Comments: This printer is excellent for hobbyists who want an all-in-one machine that is capable of 3D printing, laser engraving, and CNC milling. Read our Snapmaker A350 review for a complete overview of what to expect.

If you are interested in more modular 3D machines, check out XYZprinting models..

Our Choice: Best Workhorse 3D Printer

The best workhorse 3D printer for the money is the TierTime UP300.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 46

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The TierTime Up300 features rigid construction, a fully enclosed print chamber, and comes with useful accessories. From our tests, this 3D printer deserves much more recognition than what it gets.

Thanks to the enclosed print chamber, you can print ABS materials with molded supports that can be easily removed by hand. The modular system of interchangeable printheads enables high-quality printing with high-temperature, low-temperature and soft plastics.

In addition, the printer boasts wireless connectivity, print queue support, an air filter inside the camera, and the ability to print fairly quickly. We also love the UPstudio feature that allows us to correct print shrinkage. In general, this is a very competent printer that is convenient to use for constant printing.

Our Comments: This is one of the most underrated printer on the market, with an amazing set of three different printheads, different print platforms, and a fairly reasonable price.

Alternatives to this printer include the Picaso Designer X and Wanhao D6 Plus.

TierTime UP300 vs Picaso Designer X vs. Wanhao D6 Plus Features

TierTime UP300 Picaso Designer X Wanhao D6 Plus
Printing technology FDM FDM  FDM
Material type PLA, ABS ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG, PEEK ABS, PLA, Flex, Nylon, PETG
Print area size 205x255x225 mm 200 x 200 x 210 mm 200 x 200 x 180 mm
Number of extruders

1

1

1

Layer thickness 0.05-0.4 mm from 0.01 mm 0.02-0.2mm
Extruder temperature 299°C 410°C 180-260°C
Connection interface USB, Wifi, Lan Ethernet, USB SD / USB
The cost Check Price Check Price Check Price

Other workhorse 3D printers that you can consider include the Ultimaker S5 and BCN3D Sigmax R19, the Polish Zortrax M200 Plus and Hungarian CraftBot Plus Pro, for which the manufacturer gives a 5-year warranty.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 47

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 48

Our Choice: Best 3D Printer for Beginners

The best 3D printer for beginners is the FlashForge Finder.

Flashforge Finder 3D Printer Review

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This printer is easy to use, plug-n-play, and affordable. Although this is an entry-level printer, it covers all the basic printing needs. The printer is shipped fully assembled. The only thing you will need to do before starting printing is to calibrate the platform, which any novice maker should still learn to do.

The FlashForge Finder is a reliable 3D printer. It even has Wi-Fi connectivity, something that most 3D printer under $500 do not have.

Our Comments: This is a great 3D printer for beginners, especially for kids. It is simple, easy to use, and features a minimalist design. The model is not new, but nothing better has been invented yet.

For a budgetary option, you can go for the Wanhao D10.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 49

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Other 3D printers that are suitable for beginners include Creality3D Ender 3 and QIDI Tech X-Pro. You can also check various XYZprinting models that are specially created for beginners.

FlashForge Finder vs. Wanhao D10 Features

FlashForge Finder Wanhao D10
Printing technology FDM FDM
Material type PLA PLA
Print area size 140 x 140 x 140 mm 116 x 116 x 125 mm
Number of extruders one one
Layer thickness 0.05-0.4 mm 0.05-0.3 mm
Connection interface Wifi, USB SD, USB
The cost Check Price Check Price

Our Choice: Best 3D Printer Build Kit

The best 3D printer build kit is the Prusa MKS3. Another option you can go for is the Portuguese printer Beeverycreative B2X300. This printer was nominated for the best color printer building manual, where even the length of the screws is detailed.

Which is the Best 3D Printer for the Money? 50

Our Comments: Apart from Prusa MK3 and Beeverycreative B2X300, Creality3D printers are also good 3D printer build kits. Other build kit models you can consider include the Anet3D, Tevo, Artillery, Tronxy, among others.

By now, it should be clear that the best 3D printer for the money will depend on your budget, skill level, and what you intend to print.

The most important things to keep in mind before choosing a 3D printer are your tasks and budget. Want to learn more about the selection process?  Read our guide on how to choose a 3D printer?

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