Three dimension printing also referred to as Additive manufacturing or rapid prototyping has improved massively in recent years. The printers have become more popular among many hobbyists and those who are just starting out exploring the said machine. As a result, many companies have come up with advanced models that enable them to produce great printers at low and affordable costs. 

Here are the best and cheapest 3D printers we rounded up with the help of our team of experts. We tested each of these top five picks to assure you’ll get the best choice possible. Also, don’t forget to click the buttons below to get their best deals on Amazon.

Cheapest 3D Printers Comparison & Rating

Cheapest 3D Printers

Features

Monoprice - 15365 Select Mini 3D Printer v2 - White With Heated (120 x 120 x 120 mm) Build Plate, Fully Assembled + Free Sample PLA Filament And MicroSD Card Preloaded With Printable 3D Models
  • 3.7" IPS color screen
  • includes accessory kit
  • all-metal nozzle
Creality Ender 3 V2 Upgraded 3D Printer with Silent Motherboard Meanwell Power Supply Carborundum Glass Platform and Resume Printing 220x220x250mm
  • 6.4.3 inch color screen
  • MeanWell power supply
  • self-developed silent motherboard
FlashForge Finder 3D Printers with Cloud, Wi-Fi, USB cable and Flash drive connectivity
  • 0.4 mm nozzle diameter
  • FlashPrint software
  • positioning precision of 11 microns on X and Y and 2.5 microns on Z
LONGER LK4 3D Printer 90% Pre-Assembled with 2.8" Full Color Touch Screen, Resume Printing, Filament Detector, Built-in Safety Power Supply 220x220x250mm
  • 2.8” colorful touchscreen
  • self-developed intelligent operating system
  • heats up to 100 ℃ in 4 minutes
ELEGOO Mars 2 Mono MSLA 3D Printer UV Photocuring LCD Resin 3D Printer with 6.08 inch 2K Monochrome LCD, Printing Size 129x80x150mm/5.1x3.1x5.9inch, Green Cover
  • ChituBox software
  • UV photocuring
  • 30-50 mm/h printing speed

1. Monoprice 15365 Mini 3D Printer

Monoprice - 15365 Select Mini 3D Printer v2 - White With Heated (120 x 120 x 120 mm) Build Plate, Fully Assembled + Free Sample PLA Filament And MicroSD Card Preloaded With Printable 3D Models
Specifications:
98% Overall

Brand

Monoprice

Dimensions

11.3 x 7.5 x 13.5 inches

Weight

9.90 pounds

Compatible Material

ABS, PLA, Wood, Copper, Steel, Metal, Bronze 

98%
print quality
97%
features
98%
ease of use
98%
ergonomics and build
Pros:
  • Setup is a breeze and comes with helpful instructions and support.
  • Equipped with a 3.7 inches IPS color screen. It helps to operate the printer easily.
  • Has a small footprint and open frame design. It makes it compact enough to fit on any desk.
  • Installed with a Micro SD card with models and sample PLA filament to print right away.
  • Can use different filament types including ABS, PLA, among others.
  • Equipped with a heated aluminum build plate nozzle cooling fan to enable the printer to work on different filaments.
  • The extruder can heat to temperatures of up to 482 °F (250 °C).
  • Can be connected via WI-FI or USB cable.
Cons:
  • Only prints small sizes of models; not capable of printing anything larger than 4 x 4 x 4.
  • Only comes with an old version of Cura.
Final Take:

It is an amazing printer since it can support different filament types thanks to the extruder that supports different ranges of temperatures. It can use basic filaments like ABS and PLA and other high-quality materials. The filaments are easy to feed in since the printer is installed with a quick-release steel gear filament feeder. Also, a great 32 bit processor, lots of room for potential upgrades, a great size that will fit any size of the working station, and excellently silent up to the last movement of the extruder. Once you learn the best slicing settings, you’ll be able to print exquisitely beautiful models.

2. Comgrow US1-Ender3 V2-FBA Upgraded 3D Printer

Creality Ender 3 V2 Upgraded 3D Printer with Silent Motherboard Meanwell Power Supply Carborundum Glass Platform and Resume Printing 220x220x250mm
Specifications:
96% Overall

Brand

Comgrow

Dimensions

21.02 x 14.96 x 8.03 inches

Weight

1.35 pounds

Compatible Material

PLA

97%
print quality
96%
features
94%
ease of use
97%
ergonomics and build
Pros:
  • Has a V-guide rail with pulleys for stability and maximum durability.
  • Equipped with a 4.3 inches color screen.
  • Installed with a UL MeanWell power supply.
  • Has a carborundum glass platform. It helps maintain printing temperatures and prevents printings from warping.
  • Equipped with a built-in silent motherboard which is self-developed to ensure the printer makes less noise and prints faster.
  • Has an integrated compact design and an exquisite appearance which helps preserves more space and performs more efficiently.
  • Has a building area of 220 x 220 x 250 mm.
Cons:
  • The heating plate is not easy to level if you are new to 3D printing.
  • Pre-assembled parts need adjustments, and the remaining parts take much time to install.
Final Take:

This Creality Ender 3 V2 upgraded 3D printer is a printer that you will definitely love. Besides saving you some money, it will save you time since it is equipped with a rotary knob on the extruder which ensures that you easily and effortlessly feed in the filament. The silent motherboard also makes the printer move smoothly with less noise of under 50 dB when it’s printing. Additionally, the printer can resume printing from where the extruder was positioned last in case of a power outage or planned pause. Moreover, it has an integrated toolbox to help you conveniently organize and store the printer’s tools.

3. FlashForge Finder FFF 3D Printer

FlashForge Finder 3D Printers with Cloud, Wi-Fi, USB cable and Flash drive connectivity
Specifications:
95% Overall

Brand

FlashForge

Dimensions

16.54 x 16.54 x 16.54 inches

Weight

24.3 pounds

Compatible Material

Plastic, PLA

96%
print quality
95%
features
95%
ease of use
94%
ergonomics and build
Pros:
  • Equipped with a slide-in build plate. It makes it easy to remove from the printer and so as removing the finished print.
  • Made with an intuitive calibration detection system. It helps when leveling the bed.
  • Has a quiet printing design. It produces a low noise at 50 dB.
  • Wireless. Uses Wi-Fi, USB, or flash drive connection for file transmission.
  • Has a 3.5 inches full touch screen. Makes it easy to operate the printer.
  • Has a build volume of 140 x 140 x 140 mm.
  • Installed with a start-up PLA filament.
  • Use fused filament fabrication printing technology.
Cons:
  • No maintenance instructions and no descriptions of where the additional tools should be used.
  • Does not accept 1 kg filament spools.
  • The GUI appeared in Chinese after a factory reset.
Final Take:

If you need a printer that is affordable and user-friendly, the Flashforge Finder 3D printer is the ideal machine for you. It uses a 3D cloud to store, edit, share, and print. Furthermore, the cloud also provides an interesting model database. The non-toxic PLA models that the printer uses are encased in the printer when it’s printing. Also, it is made of alloy and plastic, which makes it sturdy for better stability to produce high-quality printings. Lastly, easy to use. Just take it out of the box, remove sealing tapes, plug it in, install filament, have the automated bed leveling process, and print. So far, this is one of the best semi-plug-and-play 3D for beginners, hobbyists, and students.

4. LONGER LK4 3D Printer

LONGER LK4 3D Printer 90% Pre-Assembled with 2.8" Full Color Touch Screen, Resume Printing, Filament Detector, Built-in Safety Power Supply 220x220x250mm
Specifications:
93% Overall

Brand

LONGER

Dimensions

42.5 x 40.2 x 50.5 inches

Weight

19.3 pounds

Compatible Material

1.75 mm PLA (recommended), ABS, Wood

95%
print quality
92%
features
94%
ease of use
92%
ergonomics and build
Pros:
  • Has an intelligent operating system with a 2.8 inches color screen which is easy to operate even when offline.
  • Made with a sturdy frame that looks stylish and it maximizes the printer’s durability to serve you longer.
  • Can remember the last position of the extruder in case of an unexpected power outage.
  • Has an upgraded heating bed that heats to 100 ℃ in just four minutes.
  • Made with a compact build design. It is not bulky, so it's easy to place it anywhere you are working from.
  • Has a printing area of 220 x 220 x 250 mm.
  • Comes pre-installed with 197 inches of 1.75 mm filament.
  • Uses fused deposition modeling (FDM) printing technology which is fast and straightforward.
Cons:
  • The touchscreen is not very sensitive.
  • The micro SD card and USB port are at the back of the printer. Inserting the card could be a hassle.
  • Small bed leveling knobs
Final Take:

Besides being cost-effective, the LONGER LK4 3D printer is a beautiful and great gift for students who are starting out in 3D printing. This printer is 90% pre-assembled upon delivery. The cantilever, gantry, and nozzle are pre-installed by the manufacturer. The remaining parts that are not assembled are easy to put together, and they won’t take much of your time. The printer is equipped with a high-quality power supply protection feature that prevents damages from unexpected power surges. Lastly, smart design for the heat bed as it comes with plugs, making it replaceable which is a huge plus.

5. ELEGOO Mars 2 Mono MSLA 3D Printer

ELEGOO Mars 2 Mono MSLA 3D Printer UV Photocuring LCD Resin 3D Printer with 6.08 inch 2K Monochrome LCD, Printing Size 129x80x150mm/5.1x3.1x5.9inch, Green Cover
Specifications:
93% Overall

Brand

ELEGOO

Dimensions

15.75 x 16.54 x 7.87 inches

Weight

16.98 pounds

Compatible Material

Resin

94%
print quality
93%
features
93%
ease of use
93%
ergonomics and build
Pros:
  • Uses photopolymer resin and COB UV light source to print and cure.
  • Has an extra-large building volume. It can be used for industrial or board game printings.
  • Prints at a speed of 30-50 mm/h.
  • Installed with a 3.5 inches screen for the straightforward operation of the printer.
  • Can be used by worldwide users since it supports 13 different languages, making it more convenient.
  • Made of CNC aluminum, which is a high-quality material that guarantees durability and effectiveness.
Cons:
  • The slicer of this 3D printer isn’t very beginner-friendly.
Final Take:

ELEGOO Mars 2 Mono MSLA 3D Printer uses a monochrome LCD that has a 2K HD resolution, which ensures the printer has a longer lifespan of up to four times than other printers. The printer also has a high printing speed, but it does not compromise the quality of the printings. The replaceable resin tank is made with plastics that are environmentally friendly and can be degraded. The UV LED light ensures that the printer has perfect heat dissipation, and it also ensures that your printings are of excellent quality.

Cheapest 3D Printers - Buyer's Guide

easy to assemble

This is a factor that you should consider. 3D printers come either fully assembled or pre-assembled. The pre-assembled printers require less of your time to install the remaining parts. The fully assembled printers mean you get them from the box and start printing since most of them are even installed with testing filaments. If you are just starting, you might need to consider the fully assembled printers.

printing technology

There are different printing technologies including stereolithography (SLA), digital light processing (DLP), selective laser sintering (SLS), fused deposition modeling (FDM) also referred to as fused filament fabrication (FFF), and selective laser melting (SLM) among others. The most common printing technology in the world of 3D printers is fused deposition modeling (FDM). This means that the filament materials are readily available in the market. Consider a printer that uses FDM technology since the materials are available.

build volume

The build volume simply means the area where the modeling will be printed. To get the ideal size, you need to consider the size of the printings that you will be printing. For larger printings, you will need a larger printing volume. If, for instance, you need a printer for home use by the kids, you might need one that has a small building area.

construction material

3D printers are constructed with different materials. There are those that are made with plastics, others with aluminum yet others with plastic. The material used will determine how sturdy and stable your printer will be. When choosing the ideal printer, go for the one that is made of either metal or aluminum. This will guarantee good stability, effectiveness, and durability.

lcd screen

Different printers have different screen sizes. The screen will help you operate the printer easily. Unlike the traditional printers which used knobs to operate the modern technology has simplified the hassle by creating printers with touch screens. If you are starting out, the touch screens will come in handy and will ease operating the printer within no time. Consider getting a printer that has a reliable touch screen for smooth operations.

Cheapest 3D Printers - FAQs

What filaments can I use with my 3D printer?

Most 3D printers use a wide range of filament materials. The FDM printing technology allows the printer to use different filaments to include PLA, ABS, PVA, and polycarbonate. Others may even use high-performance materials like metals, fiber, or resin. It depends on the type of printer or its printing technology.

How safe is it for my kids to use a 3D printer?

If you want to get a printer that your kids can use, always opt for the printer that is encased. An encased printer means that the working area is closed with a transparent cover so the kids can see the progress of the printing but they cannot touch it. This is safe with kids.

What largest size can I print with a 3D printer?

This entirely depends on the size of the printer. The large and bulky industrial printers have a large building volume hence they can print larger models. For smaller printers, the build volume is less in size so you cannot print large models using them.

What will happen to my printing in case of a power outage?

3D printers are constructed with a memory-retention feature whereby in case of a power outage or a pause, the printer can resume and continue printing from where the extruder is positioned before the power loss. This will also save your time and material.

Author

Santi Bongco is an editor at SolidSmack which is the leading site for 3D CAD, robots, cool product designs, and other technologies. For the past seven years, he taught robotics and developed innovative 3D printer ideas with his students. He also helped in developing some innovative digital ideas and products for various digital marketing businesses and big companies in Asia. Now, aside from exploring buffet restos in California, he enjoys leading groups of our in-house experts in trying some of your favorite products and electronic brands to write insightful reviews for you. PS: He loves reviewing appliances and taking them home to personally ‘try’ them.