3D printing, also known as additive manufacturing, is a process whereby three-dimensional objects are assembled from a digital file.
Advanced printers lay down one layer on top of another until the object has been fully assembled. 3D printing was invented in the 80s and has been used by manufacturers since the early 90s.
It is heavily used in the aerospace, aviation, and automotive industries, where printers can produce prototype parts quickly for field testing and also speed up the manufacturing of various bit parts.
The use of 3D printers on a personal level began to take off in 2011. As the printers became more affordable for hobbyists and enthusiasts.
The 3D printers use less amount of commodities than traditional printers and serve as an invaluable tool for many people, particularly inventors and entrepreneurs who recognized their enormous potential.
Today, 3D Printers are no longer relegated to factories and laboratories. They can be used for making toys and jewelry, and they often serve valuable educational purposes.
In the education space, it is being used by teachers for classroom activities and projects. MakerBot (a 3D manufacturing company) has a ready-to-print Frog Dissection Kit.
Furthermore, a research professor from Colombia has been conducting experiments using a 3D printer to make edible meals (printed food)!
3D Printers are being used by Industrial designers, Aerospace, aviation, and automotive designers, architectures, and medical research scientists for anatomical model-making to bio-printing and designing molecular models. But they are also being used in the private sphere for creating sculptures, architectural models, and new technological innovations, among other things.
So picking out the perfect 3D printer is not an easy task. As they are a large number of options available for you to choose from, which can be overwhelming if you’re not sure what to look for. This guide has isolated some of the best printers available, which will go a long way towards helping you find the right printer for your needs.
The 5 Best 3D Printers For 2020 bringing out their pros and cons
1. MakerBot Replicator+
The MakerBot Replicator+ 3D printer is a considerable upgrade over its predecessor, delivering better speed, a bigger build area, and workflow solutions for professionals.
- Relatively quiet
- Very good print quality.
- Easy to use
- Prints via USB, Wi-Fi, Ethernet, and from a USB thumb drive.
- Somewhat pricey filament.
- The printer setup through the MakerBot Mobile app can be tricky.
2. Dremel DigiLab 3D40 Flex 3D Printer
Is easy-to-use DigiLab 3D40 Flex 3D Printer has user-friendly software, excellent output quality, and also a wide mix of connectivity options It’s a fine choice for classroom use
- Solid print quality.
- User-friendly software to use
- Simple setup.
- Multiple connection choices.
- Limited to PLA filament.
3. LulzBot Mini 2
The LulzBot Mini 2 is simple to use and works with a variety of filament types. It’s a good choice for schools and hobbyists, and anyone willing to invest in a powerful and versatile 3D printer.
- LCD with an SD-card slot.
- Works with Windows, Linux, and macOS X.
- Powerful software.
- Easy to remove finished objects from the print bed
- Relatively sparse connectivity options.
- Print quality inconsistent at times.
- No bundled filament.
4. XYZprinting da Vinci Jr. 2.0 Mix
The XYZprinting da Vinci Jr. 2.0 Mix is a great choice for a low-price consumer of 3D printer, especially if you want to print in two colors.
- No misprints.
- Good print quality
- Low price for a two-color 3D printer.
- Noise-free when printing
- Requires the use of a proprietary filament.
- Poor documentation makes the learning curve longer than it should normally be.
5. Polaroid PlaySmart 3D Printer
The Polaroid PlaySmart 3D Printer is a portable, stylish 3D printer with above-par overall print quality, but, alas, a tiny build area for the money.
- Wi-Fi camera monitors print jobs.
- Small, lightweight for a desktop 3D printer.
- Multiple-color support.
- Easy to set up and use
- Small build area.
- Too-brief warranty.
- High price for its capabilities.
best 3D printer under 500 dollars
Original Prusa Mini
The best 3D printer under 500USD is the award-winning Original Prusa i3 MK3S, sprinkle with some future-facing improvements, and a $450 tag price, and that’s what you get with the Prusa Mini.
Handy, is it not,? And for that, it’s a rock-solid budget recommendation for those that want to bank on that impeccable Prusa reputation, but can’t quite stretch to the inarguably premium price of the MK3S.
At $420, the trade-offs are small. Most noticeably in the (180 x 180) mm build plate. But a slick large-screen UI and 32-bit mainboard give, in our opinion, a glimpse of what future Prusa printers hold are:
- Auto bed-leveling
- one-click printing
- the removable spring steel bed
- a future firmware update unlocking Wi-Fi network-ability and print farm management
WHAT’S GREAT ABOUT IT
- Excellent print quality
- The removable full metal print bed
- Quality hard- & software
Cheap 3D printer
3D printers using SLA technology are usually priced higher than FDM printers. However, the Chinese manufacturer Anycubic has opted for the launch of low-cost resin printers.
This is the case of the Photon Zero, an SLA machine with a build volume of (97 x 54 x 150) mm and a layer resolution of 10 microns. Besides, its new UV module allows a more uniform distribution of UV light, providing higher quality prints.
Its cooling system also guarantees a more stable print performance. Without a doubt, Anycubic’s technology provides professional results at an affordable price of $169.
Best 3D printer for beginners
Flashforge Adventurer III
FlashForge Finder has a simple design and is equipped with basic features. It is also fairly priced making it a good 3D machine for beginners.
Most importantly, it is user-friendly, even those completely new to 3D printing will not have a hard time operating it. Everything about this 3D printing machine is very attractive for novices.
It also includes a full-color touchscreen with user-friendly control that is very simple and convenient to operate.
Furthermore, it shows the preview control and supports different languages including English, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, French, and more.
That’s not all; It has a sturdy, slide-in build plate for easy set-up or removal. It also comes with the FlashForge integrated assist leveling system for precise and convenient calibration.
Furthermore, calibrating is generally challenging, but you don’t have to go through that with this machine, which makes it appealing to those who are new to 3D printing that’s why this is one of the best 3D printers for beginners.
Flash Forge Finder uses fused filament fabrication (FFF) 3D printing technology. It also operates quietly because it is equipped with a silent printing function.
Moreover, it does not use proprietary filament which gives you more choices of materials to choose from. You can use any filament as long as the spool fits the cartridge.
Beginners will have no trouble using this because it comes with straightforward and easy to follow directions. You’ve got everything you need to start working with this machine.
So, what is the best 3D printer for home use? Of course, Flash Forge Finder! I highly recommend it for those looking for their first 3D printing device.
- Operates quietly
- Competitive price
- Easy to set up
- Supports various types of filaments
- Small build volume
- Software is not the best
We bring you the best top-end flagship printers to the mid-range printers and also the budget printer
The best Top-end printer
- Technology: FDM/Material Jetting
- Build Volume: (300 x 200 x 150) mm
- Market Price (USD): $26,000
Of all the FDM 3D printers on this list, the Rize One is the only option that combines this technology with material jetting. The company uses a patented Augmented Polymer Deposition (APD) process, enabling multi-material printing without the need for much post-processing and use of recyclable materials.
This special technology involves the simultaneous extrusion of thermoplastics and jetting functional inks, allowing users to change the material properties of the thermoplastic at the voxel level.
This machine uses Release One ink makes it easy to integrate and remove support structures, while the marking ink is used to add text and details that other FDM 3D.
The Rize One 3D printer creates parts with high isotropic strength, stronger than even polycarbonate and carbon fiber-reinforced parts in the Z-axis.
These 3D printed parts are water and chemical resistant, and also have a high HDT. The price for this professional 3D printer is quoted at around $26,000.
The mid-range printer
Qidi Tech Xanax
- Technology : ABS and Nylon
- Build Volume: 300 x 250 x 300 mm
- Market Price (USD): $1,299
Qidi Tech’s mid-range 3D printer, the X-Max, offers fantastic reliability, high-quality printing, and a huge array of filament options.
Similar to the X-Pro but with a larger build area and some other upgrades, the X-Max is a best-seller 3D printer and one that is loved by makers around the world.
Firstly, the enclosed build chamber allows for the effective printing of filaments like ABS and Nylon, and its ventilation system can also print without bad fumes from ABS.
The durable metal frame anchors are not affected by vibrations or other disturbances, leading to crisp and smooth parts that look fantastic.
Not only can you print the standard PLA and ABS filaments, but the X-Max can comfortably handle TPU, PETG, Nylon, Carbon fiber, PC, and many other tough filaments.
You can print via Wi-Fi, and if you’re prone to power outages, do not fret, as the X-Max can pause where printing was stopped and resume from that point.
The large 5-inch touchscreen is easy to navigate, and the removable metal build plate makes removing finished parts much easier and reduces the damage that can occur in scraping finished parts. Overall, it’s very reliable, consistent, and offers fantastic quality FDM 3D printing.
Best budget printer
- Technology :UV LCD
- Build Volume: (120 x 68 x 155) mm
- Market Price: $250
The first resin 3D printer on our ranking, the Elegoo Mars is a fantastic low-cost printer for those well-versed in resin printing and who do not mind the added complexity over FDM.
It’s an LCD 3D printer, a cheaper and newer iteration on previous SLA printers capable of printing multiple parts simultaneously with no loss of speed.
Resin printers are capable of better precision and smoother surface finish than FDM printers, and the Elegoo Mars is one of the most accurate LCD printers around. It shocked makers with its accuracy on release and is still one of the best-selling 3D printers around today.
Despite the low price, the Elegoo is very accurate, with resolutions on the X and Y axes reaching 47 microns. Prints are smooth and have great, crisp surface finishes. For the price, it’s a fantastic resin printer that fully deserves its place on our list.
Just a few years ago resin printers cost thousands, and now you can get high-quality printers like the Elegoo Mars for just $250 — it’s astounding.
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