Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500

Resin 3D printers produce excellent prints that are highly detailed. However, the 3D printers can be a little expensive. If you are on a small budget, you may be wondering which is the best resin 3D printer under $500. Read our guide to find out.

The price of resin 3D printers has come down over the recent years. Today, it can be quite a challenge determining which resin 3D printer to buy, given the many options available on the market. If you are looking for the best resin 3D printer under 500 dollars, this article is for you.

The printers in this review provide excellent value for the price. These printers are perfect for making miniatures and other models where you’ll want the minute details to be seen.

Let’s get started.

What to Know Before Buying

SLA/resin 3D printers use resin rather than filaments to print models. One of the characteristics of resin is that it produces a strong odor during the printing process. Therefore, you want a printer that has an inbuilt air filter.

However, most of the time, you will need a standalone air purifier if you will be printing a lot of items with resin 3D printers. See the recommended air purifiers for resin 3D printers.

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500

  • 1. Anycubic Photon Mono

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 1

AVAILABLE ON ANYCUBIC

The Anycubic Photon Mono stands out for its ease of use, great print quality, and relatively fast printing speed. The printer’s speed is 2.5X faster than that of the original Anycubic Photon 3D printers. Moreover, its back is transparent. Therefore, you can see through it, unlike is the case with the Mars 2 Pro. Despite this, the back blocks 99.95% of UV light.

The Anycubic Photon Mono also comes with various other improvements that its predecessor did not have. These include a touchscreen with a great interface and compatibility with all standard 405nm resins.

The SLA 3D printer has a build volume of 130 x 80 x 165mm and a max printing speed of 60mm/h.

Let’s see some of the notable features of the printer.

Quick-Replace One Piece FEP

The Anycubic Photon Mono has an FEP film that makes it easy to replace the release film. Thanks to the FEP film, replacing the release film is reduced into three easy steps:

  1. Unscrew the screws holding the film in place
  2. Replace the film with your new release film
  3. Tighten the screws

New Matrix Parallel Light Source

The printer provides a more uniform exposure to the resin. This helps to improve the print accuracy, ensuring that even minute details of your models are captured. The new matrix parallel light source also improves efficiency and heat dissipation.

You can use the Anycubic Photon Mono to 3D printer to print your favorite games, movies or cartoon characters.

6.08 Inch 2K Monochrome LCD

The Anycubic Photon Mono has a 2K monochrome LCD, which can print up to 2000 hours. This is much faster, compared to color LCDs, which can only print up to 500 hours.

Anycubic Photon Mono Features

  • Improved UV cooling system
  • Quick-replace one-piece FEP
  • UV transparent cover
  • Safety auto-stop function for cover removal
  • High quality power supply
  • 8-inch touchscreen
  • New matrix parallel light source
  • Better stepper motor stability
  • Z-axis guide rail structure
  • 08-inch 2K monochrome LCD
  • 1-year warranty

Anycubic Photon Tech Specs

General Specs

Technology LCD
Year Resin
Assembly Fully assembled
Manufacturer Anycubic
Country China

3D Printing Properties

Build volume 130 x 80 x 165 mm
XY resolution 0.051 mm (2560 x 1680 pixels)
Z-axis positioning accuracy 0.01 mm
Printing speed 50 mm/h
Bed leveling n/a
Third party materials Yes
Materials 405 nm UV resin

Software Requirements

Recommended Slicer  Anycubic Photon Workshop
Operating system Windows, Mac OSX
File types STL
Connectivity USB

Dimensions & Weight

Frame dimensions 227 x 222 x 383 mm
Weight 4.5 kg
Boxed Size n/a
Weight (packed) n/a

Why Buy the Anycubic Photon Mono

  • Provides great value for money, given the print quality and build volume
  • Has an easy leveling system
  • Easy to use once you get familiar with the basic operations
  • Relatively fast at printing (2.5X faster than the original Anycubic 3D printer)
  • Produced outstanding models with a resolution of 0.05mm

What to Be Aware of Before Buying

  • The printer’s screen is susceptible to scratches
  • The printer only recognizes files made using Photon Workshop, its slicer software
  • Photon Workshop is a little bit limited. However, you can slice your models using ChiTuBox, save them as STL files and then open them in Workshop

Our Verdict

The Anycubic Photon Mono is an affordable and reliable SLA 3D printer. The printer produces high quality 3D models and this makes it one of the best resin 3D printers under 500 dollars.

  • 2. Creality LD-002R

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 2

BUY ON TOP3DSHOP | AMAZON

Creality produces a wide range of FDM 3D printers, such as the Ender 5 Pro. However, did you know that the company also has resin printers?

One of the SLA 3D printers under $500 from the company is Creality LD002R. You can start printing your models using this printer in less than 5 minutes.

The Creality LD002R has a 3.5” full-color touchscreen with all the operation controls.

Easy to Use

The Creality LD002R is easy to get started with. The easy “getting started” instructions are displayed on the touchscreen interface.

Assembling the printer takes minimal effort and so is auto leveling. The printer also has a simple leveling system which requires you to only loosen the four side screws, press home, push the plate down to make sure it’s flat and then tighten the screws.

This printer is compatible with ChiTuBox, a popular resin slicer used in 3D printing.

Strong Air Filtering System

Resin can be quite smelly when used in 3D printing. Therefore, it helps if the 3D printer has some way of dealing with the odor.

The Creality LD002R has an air filtering system that helps in handling the smell. The system is located at the back of the print chamber and features two fans and a bag of activated carbon. The activated carbon does a good job of absorbing the smell produced by the resin.

Stable Ball Linear Rails

SLA 3D printers work to produce high quality smooth surfaces. Therefore, it is important for them to have a stable Z-axis.

The Creality LD002R has ball linear rails that ensure movements along the Z-axis are steady.

Creality LD-002R Features

  • Anti-aliasing effect
  • Quick leveling
  • Strong air filtering system
  • 30W uniform light source
  • 2K HD masking screen
  • Ball linear rails
  • All-metal body + CNC aluminum
  • Full color touchscreen
  • Convenient resin vat cleaning

Creality LD-002R Specs

General Specs

Technology MSLA/LCD
Type Resin
Year 2019
Assembly Fully-assembled
Manufacturer Creality

3D Printing Properties

Build Volume 120 x 65 x 165 mm
Layer Height 20 – 50 microns
Resolution 2560 x 1620 pixels
XY-axis positioning accuracy 0.075 mm
Z-axis positioning accuracy n/a
Printing Speed 50 – 70 mm height/h
Bed-Leveling Manual
Display 3.5 in touchscreen
Third-Party Materials Yes
Materials 405 nm UV resin

Software Requirements

Recommended Slicer ChiTu Box
Operating system Mac, Windows, Linux
File types STL, CTB
Connectivity USB

Dimensions & Weight

Frame dimensions 221 x 221 x 403 mm
Weight 7 kg

Why We Love the Creality LD002R

  • Can run non-stop without issues
  • Compatible with ChiTuBox, unlike is the case with the Anycubic Photon Mono
  • Amazing 3D prints
  • Great price
  • The leveling is easy to do
  • Easy and fast assembly

What to Be Aware Of

  • The build volume is not the largest. However, it is sufficient for average-sized prints
  • Sometimes, the light array may over-expose on finer details

Our Verdict

Creality produces amazing 3D printers. With the Creality LD002R, the body is sturdy and nice. Moreover, the print quality makes it one of the best resin 3D printers under $500.

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 3 Creality LD-002R Review: Features, Specs, & Test Prints
  • 3. Qidi Tech Shadow 6.0 Pro

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 4

AVAILABLE ON TOP3DSHOP | AMAZON

The Qidi Tech Shadow 6.0 Pro is an upgrade of the Shadow 5.5S. This printer has a larger build volume, an upgraded matrix UV module for improved printing resolution and faster curing, a dual Z-axis linear rail for improved stability and printing precision, and a lager resin vat capacity for less refilling and spillage.

Compact Build

The Qidi Tech Shadow 6.0 Pro features a compact build. The printer is easy to use and its small size makes it excellent for house, garage or office setting.

Apart from the design, the Qidi 3D printer has quality rods, mainboard, motor, and CNC machined parts. All these ensure accurate and excellent final prints.

Large Touch Screen

The Qidi Tech Shadow 6.0 Pro printer has a 3.5-inch LCD touchscreen. On the touchscreen’s interface, you can change the settings of the printer.

Air Circulation & Filtration System

The printer has an upgraded air circulation system that uses activated carbon. This system helps with ventilation and absorbing some of the odor produced by the printed resin. The air circulation system features two fans.

The best resin to use with Qidi Tech Shadow 3D printer is the Anycubic Plant-Based UV resin. The resin is more expensive than standard reins but its smell is bearable.

Qidi Tech Shadow 6 Specs

Operation 6-inch Color TFT Touch Screen
Connectivity USB Drive
Printer Dimension 245 x 230 x 420mm
Build Volume 130 x 70mm x 150mm
Compatibility 405nm resin, Dental non-cast resin, Dental casting resin
Light Source UV-LED(wavelength 405nm)
Support File Input: STL, SLC, OBJ – Output: CTB
XY Resolution 0.047mm(2560*1440)
Z-axis Accuracy 0.00125mm
Suggested Layer Thickness 0.01-0.2mm
Power 50W

Qidi Tech Shadow 6.0 Pro Features

  • 5-inch touchscreen
  • All-aluminum CNC-machined parts
  • Air circulation and filtration system
  • Large resin vat capacity
  • 2K HD LCD screen
  • Dual Z-axis linear rails
  • Upgraded matrix UV LED light source

Why We Love the Qidi Tech Shadow 6.0 Pro

  • High quality frame and printer parts
  • Easy operation
  • Helps with filtering out the smelly resin odors
  • The larger resin vat means a shorter refilling time
  • The high-intensity UV LED rays improve printing speed
  • High precision resin 3D prints

What You Should Be Aware Of

  • The printer is not sold with resin. You have to order resin separately.

Our Verdict

We highlight recommend the Qidi Tech Shadow 6.0 3D printer. The printer is easy to assemble and get started with. Moreover, it prints high quality models.

  • 4. Anycubic Photon S

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 5

COMPARE PRICE ON ANYCUBIC | TOP3DSHOP | AMAZON

Anycubic manufactures some of the best resin 3D printers for consumers. One of the SLA printers from the company is the Anycubic Photon S. The printer has a matrix light source that disperses the photons in different directions, which leads to better prints.

Read on for the tech specifications and features of the Photon S.

Great Print Quality

The Photon S produces high-quality models that will last long. The printer comes with an easy Get Started manual that will have you running it in no time. In the manual, there’s information on how to set the printer correctly for the best quality prints.

Easy to Get Started With

The Photon S comes already assembled in the box. Therefore, if you are not a techie, you shouldn’t have to worry about the setup. The only thing you should focus on is how to use the #D printer.

You can test drive the printer to know its features and what they do.

Quiet Operations

This printer prints fast and is quite quiet. Therefore, it is ideal for both office and home use.

Anycubic Photon S Specs

General

Printing Technology LCD-based Masked Stereolithography (MSLA)/LCD Shadow Masking
LCD 5.2-inch 2K
Build Volume 115 x 65 x 165 mm
Z-Layer Resolution 10 microns (recommended)
XY Resolution 47 microns
UI 2.8-inch Color TFT touchscreen
Connectivity USB
Build Platform Leveling Manual
Materials Resins suitable for 405nm LCD-based printers

Software

Bundled software Photon Workshop
File types STL

Weight & Dimensions

Weight 5.9 kg
Dimensions 230 x 200 x 400 mm

Anycubic Photon S Features

  • Responsive full color touchscreen
  • Sanded aluminum platform
  • Redesigned for quiet printing
  • One-screw steel ball leveling structure
  • Upgraded UV module
  • Air filtration system
  • Dual Z-axis linear rails

Why We Love the Anycubic Photon S

  • Comes with extra film screens for the resin vat
  • Responsive and accurate touchscreen
  • Easy leveling with single grub screw design
  • Easy to use and solid build
  • Dual fans and the upgraded matrix UV lighting speeds up printing
  • The print surface is calibrated at the factory

The Anycubic Photons S produces high-quality and detailed prints. This is one of the best printers for beginners. Moreover, there is an active support community on Facebook where you can learn everything you need to know about using the printer for 3D printing.

What You Should Be Aware Of

  • It takes time to get used to the printer’s slicer software.

Our Verdict

The Anycubic Photon S is easy to get started with and works well. The printer produces high quality models with 0.1mm resolution. However, the printing speed is a little low (just 20mm/h) compared to other SLA printers in this guide.

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 3 Anycubic Photon S Review: Features, Specs, & Test Prints
  • 5. EPAX X1-N

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 7

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

The EPAX X1-N is another model that makes it on our list of the best resin 3D printers under $500. This 3D printer is ready to use right out of the box. There isn’t any calibration to do.

The printer has a 3.5-inch color TFT touchscreen that you can use to navigate to its features.

Let’s go through the features, specs and overview of the EPAX X1-N.

Better Light Source

The EPAX X1-N stands out with its powerful 50W rated 5 x 10 LED light source. This light source is brighter than that found in most SLA 3D printers (typically 25W).

To increase the lifespan of the LCD masking screen, the light source has been turned down to 40W. This also ensures the models printed are more durable.

Fixed Precision Build Platform

When choosing a resin 3D printer, some of the things you want to look at are accuracy, sturdiness, and precision. The EPAX X1 -3D printer has specially designed 4-point mount for the build platform that holds it securely in place.

During resin 3D printing, there are many suction forces at play when the build platform touches the FEP film. These forces can cause the print job to fail. The EPAX X1-N 3D printer handles the forces well and rarely will you have to re-level it.

Upgraded Axis Rail

When 3D printing, you don’t want to deal with issues related to the Z-axis. The EPAX X1-N features upgraded Z-axis railing with double steel rods. Therefore, you won’t have to worry about Z-axis issues.

The reinforced carriage and steel bearings of the printer prevent any z-wobble. Moreover, the printer comes already calibrated. Therefore, it runs smoothly straight out of the box.

EPAX X1-N Specs

Technology LCD
Molding size 115 mm x 65 mm x 155 mm
XY-resolution 0.047 mm
Z-axis layer height 0.01 mm
Print material Resin
Layer print time 6 – 7 seconds
Printer control Touchscreen
Built-in camera for monitoring No
Connectivity SD card
Operating software ChiTu Box

EPAX X1-N Features

  • Has a pause function to ensure proper bed adhesion
  • Solid workmanship with metal housing
  • Supports anti-aliasing
  • Improved non-FEP film
  • Anti-backlash nuts on Z-axis
  • Dual Z-axis linear rails
  • 40W high energy 50W LED light source
  • 5-inch 2K LCD masking screen (2560×1440)
  • Large 3.5-inch color TFT touchscreen

Why We Love the EPAX X1-N 3D Printer

  • Uses the ChiTuBox file format
  • The resin vat has a rubber seal that prevents leakages
  • The door opens around the sides for more access
  • Professionally designed with 4-point mounts to keep it in place
  • Comes perfectly calibrated from the factory
  • Flawless printing right out of the box
  • Amazing precision and detailed models
  • Many features ensure a smooth Z-axis movement

What You Should Be Aware Of

The EPAX X1-N is easy to operate and, therefore, suitable for beginners. However, you have to buy the resin separately as it’s not sold with the printer.

Our Verdict

The EPAX X1-N is one of the best SLA 3D printers under $500. The printer is pricier that some of the models in this review but its performance is worth the price.

  • 6. Anycubic Photon Mono SE

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 8

AVAILABLE ON ANYCUBIC | TOP3DSHOP | AMAZON

The Anycubic Photon Mono SE is easy to use, has great adhesion to the brushed aluminum platform and prints relatively fast. This printer features a build area of 130 x 78 x 160mm. There is also a 2K 6.08-inch monochrome LCD, which has a lifespan of up to 2000 hours.

Let’s look at some of the features of the printer.

Single-Screw Bed Leveling System

The Mono SE has an easy and simple leveling system. To level the print bed, follow the two steps below:

  1. Press ‘Home’ on the printer with the screw loosened
  2. Tighten the screw

Fast Printing Speeds

The Photon Mono SE is the fastest Anycubic 3D printer. This printer has a maximum printing speed of 80mm/h. Therefore, if speed is an important factor for you in a printer, the Photon Mono SE is worth a second look.

Remote Control Wi-Fi Supported

You can control the Photon Mono SE remotely. You can control print operations, adjust the print settings and monitor your printing progress without having to be next to the printer.

Anycubic Photon Mono SE Specs

General Specs

Technology LCD
Type Resin
Year 2020
Assembly Fully-assembled
Manufacturer Anycubic
Country China

3D Printing Properties

Build volume 130 x 78 x 160 mm
Layer height 10+ microns
XY resolution 0.051 mm (2560 x 1620 pixels)
Z-axis positioning accuracy 0.01 mm
Printing speed 60 mm/h
Bed-leveling n/a
Display 3.5-inch touchscreen
Third-party materials Yes
Materials 405 nm UV resin

Software Requirements

Recommended slicer Anycubic Photon Workshop
Operating system Windows / Mac OSX
File types STL
Connectivity USB

Dimensions & Weight

Frame dimensions 220 x 200 x 400 mm
Weight ~8.2 kg
Boxed size
Weight (packed)

Anycubic Photon Mono SE Features

  • Comes with the Anycubic slicer software
  • Has a UV cooling system
  • Features single-screw bed leveling system
  • High-quality power supply
  • High-performance Z-axis
  • Remote control Wi-Fi supported
  • All-metal framing
  • New matrix parallel light source
  • Fast printing speed
  • 08-inch monochrome LCD

Why We Love the Anycubic Photon Mono SE

  • High precision at a minimum layer height of 10 microns
  • Stable movement that ensures high print quality
  • Comes with all the accessories you need, e.g., funnels, gloves, a mask, etc.
  • Amazing print speed, which is 4X faster than an RGB screen
  • You can remotely control print operations, adjust settings, and monitor print progress

What You Should Be Aware Of

  • The Anycubic Photon Mono SE can only print files that are of the Anycubic photon format
  • The printer’s cover is not fully removable. Therefore, access can be a little bit of a challenge

Our Verdict

The Anycubic Photon Mono SE is one of the fastest SLA 3D printers on the market. With the right settings, the printer produces high-quality miniatures and other models where details matter.

  • 7. Elegoo Mars 2 Pro (MSLA)

Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500 9

AVAILABLE ON AMAZON

The Elegoo Mars 2 Pro is a high-quality resin 3D printer that comes with many features. This printer has a build volume of 129 x 80 x 160mm and remains stable throughout the printing process.

Let’s look at some of the features of this 3D printer.

Sanded Aluminum Plate

The Elegoo Mars 2 Pro has a sanded aluminium plate that provides great adhesion during the printing process. With resin printing, bed adhesion is important since there is a lot of liquid movement. If the bed adhesion is poor, the prints are likely to fail.

Built-in Active Carbon Filtering

The 3D printer has built-in active carbon filtration that helps to absorb the fumes from the resin during the printing process.

There is also a turbo cooling fan and a silicone rubber seal that helps to keep out the resin odors.

COB UV LED Light Source

The Elegoo Mars Pro 2 has a COB light source that produces uniform light emission and the fantastic heat dissipation performance. The light source provides a great maintenance rate on the lighting.

This light system hardens the resin, ensuring you end up with high-quality prints.

Elegoo Mars Pro 2 Specs

General Specs

Technology LCD
Type Resin
Year 2020
Assembly Fully-assembled
Manufacturer Elegoo
Country China

3D Printing Properties

Build Volume 130 x 82 x 160 mm (5,1 x 3,1 x 6,3 inches)
Layer Height 10+ microns
XY Resolution 50 Mircons (2560 x 1620 pixels)
Z-Axis Accuracy 0.00125 mm
Print Speed 30-50 mm/h
Bed-Leveling Manual (assisted)
Display 3.5″ full-color touchscreen
Built-in Camera No
Third-Party Materials Yes
Materials 405nm UV resin

Software Requirements

Recommended slicer ChiTuBox
Operating system Windows / Mac OS X
File types STL, SLC, OBJ
Connectivity USB

Dimensions & Weight

Frame dimensions 200 x 200 x 400 mm
Weight 6,2 kg

Elegoo Mars Pro 2 Features

  • Comes with 2 extra FEP films
  • Built-in active carbon filtering
  • 5-inch touchscreen
  • Sanded aluminum build plate
  • CNC machined aluminum body
  • COB UV LED light source
  • 2 second per layer exposure
  • 08-inch 2K monochrome LCD

Why We Love the Elegoo Mars 2 Pro

  • Professionally designed and durable
  • Has proper filtering systems for absorbing the resin odor
  • Sold with a 1-year warranty and 6-months warranty for the 2K LCD
  • Uniform light emissions that improve print accuracy
  • 2 second per layer exposure for curing
  • Instructions available in 12 different languages

What You Should Be Aware of

  • During printing, the resin has to be refilled more often than with other printers
  • It’s hard to see through the top cover

Our Verdict

The Elegoo Mars 2 Pro is a solid resin 3D printer under $500. This printer produces great quality prints than FDM printers.

Which is the Best Resin 3D Printer Under $500?

The above are the best SLA 3D printers under 500 dollars. These printers are relatively quiet, print fast, and produce high-quality prints.

We especially love the Anycubic Photon S. The SLA printer comes pre-assembled from the factory and ready to use. This printer is easy to use, even if you are a beginner as there is no leveling required. The printer is also affordable and there’s a great Anycubic community online where you can get support in case you encounter any problems during the printing.

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