September 23, 2020
best 3d printer buyer guide 2020 cover

The 20 Best 3D Printers For ALL Price Ranges! (Sep 2020 Update)

With 3D printers now more affordable and powerful than ever, it’s a great time to get into 3D printing. But with so many options, technologies and brands offering great 3D printers, it’s difficult to know where to look. We’re here to help: we continuously update this best 3D printer guide with the latest 3D printers that impress.

Criteria examined to make these conclusions include print quality, build volume, reliability, price-performance ratio, number of materials you can print, speed, and many others.

We have divided this into four sections: Best 3D printer under $1,000; desktop 3D printers under $3,000; professional 3D printers under $5,000; and industrial 3D printers over $10,000.

Don’t forget to sign up to our email list on the right sidebar to get updates whenever we update this ranking: you’ll be the first to know about any great new 3D printers and industry-changing innovations.

The 20 Best 3D Printers for 2020 & the best place to buy them

Name of 3D printerType of printerPriceBest price at:Alternative purchase option
ELEGOO MarsLCD / Resin$250Amazon hereGearbest here
Monoprice VoxelFDM$449Amazon here
Creality CR-10 V2FDM Kit$499-599Gearbest hereAmazon here
Monoprice Select Mini V2FDM$219Amazon here
Prusa i3 MK3SFDM Kit$999 / $749Prusa Store
AnyCubic Photon SLCD / Resin$409-500Amazon here3DJake UK & Europe here
Creality Ender 3FDM Kit$209Amazon hereGearbest here
Pulse XEFDM$999+Matterhackers here
QIDI Tech X-ProFDM$588Gearbest hereAmazon here
Flashforge Creator ProFDM$690-$750Amazon here3DJake UK & Europe here
Qidi Tech X-MaxFDM$1,199Gearbest hereAmazon here
Peopoly PhenommSLA$1,999Matterhackers here
Dremel Digilab 3D45FDM$1,899Amazon hereDynamism Store here
Makerbot Replicator+FDM$1,999Amazon here
Formlabs Form 3SLA / Resin$3,499Dynamism Store here
ZMorph VX Full SetFDM / CNC Milling$4,299Matterhackers hereAmazon here
BCN3D Sigmax R19FDM$4,299Dynamism Store here
Ultimaker 3FDM$3,499Dynamism Store here
Raise3D Pro2FDM$3,999Dynamism Store hereAmazon here
Ultimaker S5FDM$5,995Dynamism Store here
Markforged Mark TwoCarbon Fiber FDM$13,499Markforged store

Part 1: Best Desktop 3D Printers (Under $1,000)

For new and experienced makers alike, finding the best 3D printer without breaking the bank is important. Here is our ranking of the best 3D printers under $1,000.

  • We have a more extensive ranking comparing low cost 3D printers where we rank the best budget 3D printers
  • For just printers using FDM, we have a separate ranking for the best FDM 3D printers
  • For just printers using SLA, DLP or LCD technologies, we have a separate ranking for the best resin 3D printers

This article is editorially independent and we are not paid to list any 3D printers in this ranking. We remain editorially independent by including affiliate links to purchase 3D printers we recommend, that we earn a small commission on.

1. ELEGOO Mars Pro

The first resin 3D printer on our ranking, the Elegoo Mars Pro 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 version of 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 Pro is one of the most accurate LCD printers around. The original Elegoo Mars shocked makers with its accuracy on release, and the improved Mars Pro is still one of the best-selling 3D printers around today.

The Mars Pro is very accurate despite the low price, with X- and Y-axes resolutions reaching 47 microns. Prints are smooth and have crisp surface finishes — further improved by the Mars Pro’s upgraded Z-axis guide-way system that creates smooth parts with little evidence of layer lines.

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 3D printers like the Elegoo Mars Pro for just $250 — the advances in the technology are astounding.

elegoo mars pro

2. Monoprice Voxel

Monoprice have released some of the best 3D printers under $1,000 in recent years, including the Maker Select V2 as well as the Mini Delta, their introductory delta 3D printer. Their current model, the Monoprice Voxel, features a removable print bed and closed chamber for more effective ABS 3D printing. Moreover, the printer is capable of up to 50-micron layer heights, very precise for the price.

Being a small desktop 3D printer, the Monoprice Voxel can’t print massive parts — though for under $500 you can’t expect the world. With printing dimensions of up to 150 x 150 x 150 mm, this should be enough for most makers who aren’t creating anything huge, and is perfect as a 3D printer for miniatures in ABS or PLA. All this makes the Monoprice Voxel a pretty solid low cost 3D printer.

flashforge adventurer 3 best 3d printer
Flashforge are known for making some of the best cheap 3D printers in recent time.

3. Creality CR-10 V2

The Creality CR-10 is well-known among makers as one of the greatest 3D printers of the last few years within its price range. The CR-10, manufactured by Creality 3D, comes in a variety of sizes, and took us around 45 minutes to assemble. It’s undoubtedly one of the best DIY 3D printers around right now.

With the original CR-10 making way for new iterations, we’re championing the CR-10 V2 to maintain and even improve the CR-10’s reputation for reliability and high performance. It features an improved structure for better stability and reduced impact of vibrations, as well as a number of other key improvements that solidify the CR-10 V2 as a top tier 3D printer.

At just $500, the Creality CR-10 V2 offers very good quality and a 0.05mm minimum layer thickness. The turning knob and easy-to-use screen make the CR-10 a great starter printer as well as seasoned makers. The Creality CR-10 has a print volume of 300 x 300 x 400 mm, a remarkable 3D printing build area for the price. Overall, it’s a perfect beginner 3D printer — though it can smell for the first few prints.

creality cr-10 v2

4. Monoprice Select Mini V2

If you’re a beginner, this is a perfect entry level 3D printer. No fancy extras, just a mini 3D printer that works when you want it to. If you want to build big models then this won’t work for you — the Select Mini V2 caps size at 120 x 120 x 120 mm — but for most this shouldn’t be a big issue.

We also picked the Maker Select V2 as one of our 7 recommendations for best 3D printers for education and children due to its simplicity and low price. In fact, you could buy Maker Select V2s for a class of 20-30 students for the same price as some more expensive FDM 3D printers!

The Monoprice Select Mini V2 comes with a few pre-installed 3D printer models as well as some 3D printer filament to get you started. You aren’t limited to just PLA filament either: the Select Mini V2 can print ABS, wood filaments and PVA among other materials. Overall, it’s cheap, simple and perfect for those who want a relaxed printing experience.

Monoprice select mini v2 best 3d printer under 200

5. Prusa i3 MK3S

This RepRap 3D printer is so good that it got its creator into Forbes magazine. Czech CEO Josef Prusa went from being a 3D printing fan to being one of Forbes’ 30 under 30 and selling over 100,000 3D printers worldwide! Known as the premier 3D printer to emerge from the RepRap movement, the Prusa i3 weighs around 6.35kg, and is compatible with SD cards and USB drives.

Josef Prusa now uses a farm of over 300 of his own printers… to print more of his printers… to be used to print more of his printers! This is necessary to keep up with the incredible demand. You can buy your own Prusa 3D printer online for $999 for a ready-made printer, or save a couple of hundred dollars and assemble it yourself.

prusa i3 best 3d printer
The Prusa i3 models are some of the best 3D printers ever made.

6. AnyCubic Photon S

The AnyCubic story is similar to the Elegoo Mars. First skepticism, then hysteria — it really was that good, and for that cheap. Shortly after, the Photon S was released, costing a bit more at over $400 but with some key improvements over the original AnyCubic Photon.

The Photon S can build taller parts than its predecessor, with a taller Z-axis. It also features a more stable structure and dual rail X-axis, keeping any vibrations that could affect print quality to a minimum. AnyCubic have clearly listened to complaints about the original Photon, introducing a double filtration system in the Photon S to prevent any odors during printing.

It’s another great LCD 3D printer, which resin printing fans will undoubtedly be elated with.

anycubic photon s best 3d printer

7. Creality Ender 3

One of the leading 3D printers for $200, the Creality Ender 3, like the CR-10, is a very powerful machine for the price. Another DIY 3D printer, it can be assembled in under an hour, and also features a heated bed.

An affordable workhorse 3D printer, the Ender 3 is known for its reliability, churning out part after part without issue. The open printing area means it isn’t ideal for tougher filaments like ABS or Nylon, but as a PLA 3D printer it works well.

If you’re going to be spending $200 on a 3D printer, you can’t expect the quality to be flawless. The Ender 3 prints fairly well, but cannot — and does not try to — rival prosumer $3,000 3D printers. It is good enough for beginners however, and is also open source, so if you’re an enthusiastic tinkerer you’ll have tons of fun hacking and modifying your printer.

creality ender 3 best 3d printer

8. Pulse XE — Best 3D Printer for tough filaments

Designed and built by Matterhackers, the Pulse XE bridges the gap between a desktop 3D printer and an industrial printer, able to print abrasive materials like NylonX with precision despite costing under $1,000.

3D printers in this price range typically print PLA and ABS, but the Pulse XE is different. Equipped with an E3D hot end and hardened steel nozzle (with an optional ruby nozzle upgrade), along with an effective heated bed and garolite build surface, it specializes in these tougher industrial filaments considered hard to print, allowing makers to create precise Nylon and carbon fiber parts at lower prices.

The Pulse XE can print NylonX, ABS, PETG, carbon fiber filaments, metal-filled filaments, wood-filled filaments as well as PLA, all with great accuracy. It boast up to 20-micron precision, and is based on the Prusa i3 design so you can be sure of its sturdiness.

Matterhackers is known by many as one of the largest 3D printing stores around, so you can trust their expertise in creating a 3D printer. All purchasers get access to lifetime support with their US-based team who will gladly assist you with any problems you may be having by phone or over email. Overall, it’s an extremely interesting and ambitious 3D printer aiming to democratize abrasive filament printing.

pulse xe

9. QIDI Tech X-Pro — Great 3D Printer for under $1,000

Moving out of the sub-$500 3D printer territory, we have the QIDI Tech X-Pro which you can buy for around $600 — and absolutely warrants the price. It’s a dual extruder 3D printer, with the large and ergonomic 4.3 inch touchscreen making it super simple to use. Moreover, you can connect to it and print using your home or office’s WiFi, as well as by USB.

What makes the X-Pro stand out from the crowd however is the dedication the team clearly put in to maximizing print quality for the price. Qidi Tech designed the innovative curved metal build plate, making removing prints afterwards far easier with less chance of damaging the print, while improving final part surface finish.

Unlike some cheap 3D printers, it has a closed build chamber meaning printing occurs under more stable temperatures, reducing warping and making ABS 3D printing far easier. It’s one of the best 3D printers you can buy for under $1,000.

qidi tech x-pro best 3d printer

10. Flashforge Creator Pro & Creator Max

Though not quite as cheap as its little brother, the Adventurer 3, the Flashforge Creator Pro is still one of the best low cost desktop 3D printers on the market. Featuring a dual extruder, the Flashforge Creator Pro is perfect for those who want a low-cost 3D printer that can print multiple materials concurrently.

The Creator Pro is an accurate 3D printer, with a minimum layer height of 0.1mm. Moreover, with its 225 x 145 x 150 mm build volume the Creator Pro should be able to handle any 3D printer model you need to print. Overall, it’s another terrific 3D printer, and a safe and reliable printer for the price.

More recently, Flashforge have released the Creator Max, featuring WiFi printing and remote 3D printing, better touchscreen navigation, and better leveling controls. The specs and quality are identical, but these quality-of-life improvements will justify the $180 to some.

flashforge creator pro best 3d printer

Best Mid-Range 3D Printers Under $3,000: ($1,000-$3,000 range)

11. Qidi Tech X-Max

Qidi Tech’s top-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 a number of other upgrades, the X-Max is a best-selling 3D printer that is loved by makers around the world.

The enclosed build chamber allows for effective printing of filaments like ABS and Nylon, and with its ventilation system can also print without bad fumes from ABS. The durable metal frame anchors the printer down so parts 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, the X-Max can also comfortably handle TPU, PETG, Nylon, Carbon fiber, PC and many other tough filaments. You can print via WiFi, 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 damage that can occur in scraping finished parts. Overall, it’s very reliable, consistent, and offers fantastic quality FDM 3D printing.

qidi tech x-max

12. Peopoly Phenom

Prepare to rethink everything you think you know about resin 3D printing. This monumental 3D printer proves that resin printers don’t have to be limited to small parts, with an incredible 276 x 155 x 400 mm print volume.

Using mSLA technologies, a variant on LCD printing, and featuring a powerful 4K projector for accurate and uniform UV light projection, the Peopoly Phenom offers the ability to print large yet accurate resin parts.

Additionally, as the Phenom is based on LCD technologies, the Phenom can cure entire layers at once rather than tracing the layer with a UV light as with SLA 3D printers. This means that entire batches of small resin parts can be printed at once, and with the massive size build on the Phenom this could be dozens of parts.

Other key aspects include a new and advanced resin vat system to minimize peel force, and overall the Peopoly Phenom is one of the top 3D printers for scalable resin printing.

peopoly phenom one of the best 3d printers for scalable resin printing

13. Dremel Digilab 3D45 — Great Desktop 3D printer for beginners and schools

Dremel have almost 100 years of history, and since entering the 3D printing industry have released a number of excellent 3D printers. Their most expensive 3D printer, the 3D45, is perhaps their most impressive. Featuring a large 255 x 155 x 170 mm build volume and the ability to print in not just Eco-ABS or PLA, but also Nylon and PETG, it really is a workhorse.

Moreover, its direct drive extruder, closed build chamber and heated plate all help improve quality, surface finish and minimize any prints warping. It’s super simple to use Dremel filaments since the 3D45 automatically adapts to the right settings, though you can also use third party filaments.

Depending on your needs, the Dremel 3D45 can print very accurately too — up to 50 microns. The 3D45 is also known for being reliable, very rarely failing a print with PLA (some have reported occasional issues with Nylon). Overall, it’s definitely one of the best mid-range 3D printers out.

We rank it as one of the best 3D printers for beginners, as well as an ideal 3D printer for schools, though experienced makers will enjoy it tremendously, too.

Here’s a review of the Dremel 3D45:

14. Makerbot Replicator+

Makerbot are one of the undisputed kings of desktop 3D printing, and have released some of the leading 3D printers of the last few years. The Makerbot Replicator+ is no exception, receiving almost universal praise and gaining an army of loyal fans. The Replicator+ can print between 20- and 400-micron layer resolutions, and can print via USB or SD card. It can 3D print PLA as well as PVA, PETG, and a number of third-party materials.

The Makerbot Replicator+ focuses on quality and consistency, complementing its good 152 x 190 x 196 mm build volume. Retailing at $1,499, the Replicator+ is a fantastic printer for makers who want a consistent printer they trust to get the job done.

It has been extensively focused towards schools and teaching students about 3D printing and engineering, building on the Replicator’s stellar reputation for being simple to use, even for younger makers.

makerbot replicator+ best 3d printer buyer guide 2020

15. ZMorph VX

The ZMorph is simply a fascinating machine, with versatility we have never seen before in a 3D printer. Not only is it an effective dual extruder 3D printer, but it can be converted into a CNC milling machine or even a laser engraver by changing the print head — 3 in 1!

You can even purchase Zmorph’s thick paste extruder upgrade for $250, turning your ZMorph VX into a food 3D printer, able to print chocolate and a number of other tasty materials.

Despite the number of options available, this doesn’t affect its viability as a good quality 3D printer. It’s accurate, features a large 250 x 235 x 165 mm build volume, and is also versatile in the range of printable materials compatible. Overall, it’s a very impressive 3D printer, and offers a one-stop manufacturing solution beyond just 3D printing.

zmorph vx best 3d printer

16. BCN3D Sigmax R19

Following the original Sigma 3D printer, Spanish company BCN3D have brought out the new Sigmax R19, a dual extruder 3D printer with an astonishingly large 420 x 297 x 210 mm build volume. The Sigmax is capable of printing a wide array of materials, ranging from ABS to HIPS, Nylon, Polycarbonate, and more.

Features such as ‘duplication mode’ and ‘mirror mode’ make the Sigmax one of the best 3D printer choices for small-scale part production. It is able to perform these modes as BCN3D printers feature innovative IDEX technologies whereby each of the 3D printer’s extruders move independently, making multiple parts far easier to print simultaneously.

It’s accurate, with up to 50-micron minimum layer resolutions, and is controlled by a simple-to-use touchscreen that makes printing a breeze. It’s also an open source 3D printer, so hackers and modders will love it.

bcn3d sigmax r19 best 3d printer

Best 3D Printer under $5,000 ($3000-$5000 range)

17. Ultimaker 3

Ultimaker are a Dutch fused deposition modeling 3D printer brand who have released some of the best 3D printers of the last few years. With a dual extruder and accuracy up to 20 microns, the Ultimaker 3 is a great 3D printer for rapid prototyping, and is used by small businesses, designers and makers worldwide.

In addition the Ultimaker 3 has a very decent 197 x 215 x 200 mm build volume, and includes a built-in camera for remotely monitoring your prints. You can connect to the printer via WiFi, USB or Ethernet very simply. Moreover, the Ultimaker 3 has an auto leveling system for prints to make sure printing goes smoothly.

If you’re looking for the best 3D printer in terms of accuracy, ease of use, and equipment, and don’t mind spending $3,499, the Ultimaker 3 is the printer for you.

ultimaker 3 best 3d printer

18. Formlabs Form 3

Retailing at $3,499, Formlabs’ Form 3 has become the resin 3D printer. It’s popular in both the dental and 3D printed jewelry markets due to its tremendous accuracy and for being significantly faster than traditional methods. The upgraded Form 3 has a number of improvements on the Form 2, including new LFS technologies and what Formlabs call a new Light Processing Unit which improves the surface finish of prints.

The build volume hasn’t drastically increased in the newer Form 3 (just 10mm taller Z axis), but it now boasts incredible 25 micron accuracy. You can buy Formlabs resins, or there are a number of third-party resins compatible with the Form 3 which we’ve linked below.

Check out Formlabs’ video for the Form 3 here:

19. Raise3D Pro2 & Pro2 Plus

Raise3D are a Chinese 3D printer manufacturer that have won a variety of awards. Their previous printer, the N2 Dual, was so good that well-known 3D printing service Voodoo Manufacturing used them for creating 3D parts on-demand. The Raise3D Pro2 also comes with a dual extruder, allowing for multiple colors and materials to be printed simultaneously.

The main selling point that makes this one of the best 3D printers for the price is the Pro2’s build volume. Offering 305 x 305 x 300 mm maximum dimensions, far larger parts can be created than most other printers. In addition, offering a 0.01mm minimum layer thickness along with an easy-to-use 7 inch touchscreen, the printer is perfect for industry. Though not cheap, the $3,999 price tag is fairly reasonable for what it offers.

raise3d pro 2 best 3d printer

20. Ultimaker S5

Ultimaker’s newest 3D printer, the Ultimaker S5, is the Dutch company’s highly anticipated follow-up to the fantastic Ultimaker 3 – which still features on our ranking. It’s more expensive, moving away from the desktop 3D printer price range — $5,999 vs $3,499 — but features a number of improvements and new features designed to make the Ultimaker S5 a more viable manufacturing method for prototypes and small batch production.

Featuring a larger 330 x 240 x 300 mm maximum build size, this is certainly an advantage over the Ultimaker 3. This makes it a better 3D printer for larger prototypes, shown as the Ultimaker S5 has already been used in companies such as Volkswagen. Ultimaker have earned a tremendous reputation over the years for creating great machines, and we feel the S5 is no different.

ultimaker s5 best 3d printer

Bonus: Best Professional 3D Printers (Over $10,000)

21. Markforged Mark Two

  • Company based: USA
  • Price: $13,499
  • Build volume: 320 x 132 x 154 mm

The most industrial 3D printer on this list, the Mark Two has revolutionized 3D printing due to its carbon fiber printing. Somerville, Massachusetts-based startup Markforged creates 3D printers which print composite parts with materials such as carbon fiber, fiberglass, Kevlar, and Nylon. This is done through dual extruders which are used to reinforce the composites whilst printing.

The Markforged Mark Two has a minimum layer thickness of 0.1mm, along with a decent build volume of 320 x 132 x 154 mm. This means fairly large carbon fiber-reinforced parts can be created for use in industry. The printer isn’t cheap however, retailing at around $13,499. This is far cheaper than Markforged’s first metal 3D printer, the Metal X, which costs $100,000 — though this is still very affordable for an industrial metal 3D printer, which can run into the millions of dollars.

markforged mark two best 3d printer

22. Formlabs Fuse 1

  • Company based: USA
  • Price: ~$14,000
  • Build volume: 165 x 165 x 320 mm

Though known mostly for taking over the low-cost SLA 3D printer market, Formlabs forayed into the selective laser sintering market more recently. Offering a 10mm/s speed and 100µm layer thickness, the Fuse 1 is a consistent workhorse SLS 3D printing solution.

Designed to be simple to operate, the Formlabs Fuse 1 can be used via Ethernet or WiFi, and has a fairly decent printing volume of 165 x 165 x 320 mm. It’s a heavy beast, weighing around 88kg, so it’s not exactly portable. It’s not cheap either, retailing at around €12,000. The Form 1 is however one of the best 3D printer solutions for SLS, furthering Formlabs’ excellent reputation.

formlabs fuse 1 best 3d printer

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