3D printers are becoming more and more popular for use in different environments and the versatility of what you can create is really impressive.
They are used in a variety of environments from business and industrial to home and education; they serve both professional and creative and educational purposes. We have scoured the market and selected the top picks of 3D printers all under the budget of $1000.
You will also find a useful buyers guide below where we have outlined our top tips for choosing the best 3D printer.
Are you in a hurry? If you don't have the time to read all of this article then not to worry, as we have selected our top picks for you below.
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Best 3D Printers Under $1,000 - Comparison Table
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Best 3D Printers Under $1,000 - Reviews
We have selected the Flashforge 3D Printer Creator Pro, not only does it have a great star rating, but it also has some pretty impressive features which make this a great top pick. Designed with a sturdy metal frame it has a decent build volume measuring at 8.9 X 5.8 X 5.9 inches.
The build of a 3D printer is really important. You want one that combines both durability and sturdiness to allow you to create endless projects.
This one is an upgrade on previous models produced by the brand and combines a stylish look with its user friendly elements. It has 6.3mm aviation level aluminium plate with a completely flat surface, this ensures that it does not become warped from the heating process.
You will then find the metal platform support and a 10mm guide rod which works to ensure a precise z axis movement and also prevents the platform from becoming deformed during the printing process.
With an enclosed chamber you can be assured that your ABS prints are going to be insulated and protected.
Usefully this printer is compatible with a great variety of different filament prints. Some of these include but are not limited to PLA, ABS, HIPS, PTEG, flexible filament and many more.
A really good thing about this product is that you are covered with a full manufacturers warranty and free email support with the Flashforge technicians if you find yourselves with any queries.
Next up we have selected the Dremel Digilab 3D20 3D Printer, with a very similar aesthetic to our top pick, this machine brags a number of cool features which makes it another great pick.
Not only does this allow you to create endless amounts of prints but as the printer comes out of the box already assembled you can start designing your prints straight away, super convenient as I'm sure you agree.
With this printer you will find 0.5kg spool of filament, and clear instructions that you can follow with ease. In terms of design, it is constructed with a fully enclosed design, a great safety aspect because if you do use this machine around children there is no risk of their fingers getting caught inside.
It also has a non heated build plate and is a really compact size.
A good thing about purchasing this printer is that it comes with a 1 year guarantee so if you do find yourselves experiencing any issues with it, then that isn't a problem as it can be rectified through the guarantee.
If this wasn't enough to convince you that this is a very good pick, it has also been thoroughly tested to ensure reliable printing and the filaments have been specifically engineered to optimize printing. Impressive right?
A nice perk with this machine is the touchscreen facility. This gives you a more interactive approach and allows you to modify the settings, browse through your files on the SD card and print effectively.
Of course an important thing with 3D printers is their compatibly with printing software and with the Dremel Digilab you get access to free cloud slicing software.
For our next choice, we have selected the Creality CR-10S FDM 3d printer. With a printing volume of 11.8” x 11.8” x 15.8” you have the choice to create a large singular print or you can create individual prints which can be combined to create a larger project.
The resume print function allows you to resume printing from the last layer in the event of the power cutting out. When the machine comes back on, it will then continue from the position that it stopped. This helps to save time and reduces filament waste too.
The filament detector works to reduce the possibility of accidents and helps to avoid any interruptions during the printing process.
As this printer comes semi assembled it is super easy to put together and the easy to follow tutorial means that it can be assembled with ease. This allows the printer to be put together within a minimal amount of time.
Conveniently, this printer is compatible with multiple different software types. In terms of printing software, it can be used with Cura and it also supports PROE, UG, and Rhino 3d software, so there is plenty of choice for you to choose the one that you find the most user friendly.
The upgraded dual Z-axis allows for higher position accuracy and they move smoothly and ultimately print faster.
We have chosen the QIDI Tech X Plus 3D printer as our next pick for you. This 3D printer has been manufactured incorporating two different ways of placing the filament. You can either opt for ventilative printing or enclosed constant temperature printing and this is going to differ depending on the different types of filaments.
Thanks to the double Z-axis driver, printing is much more stable and precise in regards to quality, particularly when it comes to models on a larger scale.
There are two different types of extruder assembly on this printer too, extruder A heats to a maximum temperature of 250 C and can print a variety of materials including PLA, ABS, and TPU filaments. Extruder B has a maximum printing temperature of 300 C and this can print nylon, Carbon Fiber, and PC filaments. This is going to provide you with high quality prints.
The 4.3 inch touchscreen displays clear instructions, making the printer much easier to operate.
As the build plate is removable it is much easier to remove the models from the machine and greatly minimizes the risk of damages or offsets occurring to the build plate.
In regards to the software, this printer is compatible with the latest Slicer Software, which prints models of greater quality and at a faster pace than previous versions.
The Snapmaker Original 3 - in- 1 3D printer is our final pick for you. This multifunctional product serves 3 different purposes, not only is it a great printer, it can be used for CNC carving and laser engraving too.
With an all metal build not only does it have a professional appearance but it is durable and creates high quality prints too. The digital screen allows you to follow the progress of your prints too.
When used as a 3D printer this machine supports multiple different software types. Primarily the software that you would expect to use with this printer is their very own, user friendly software Snapmakerjs. This is suitable for advanced users and beginners alike and the features enable you to have an immersive and enjoyable printing experience.
If you choose, you can also use Cura, Simplify 3D, or Slic3r software.
Impressively this printer can be assembled within minutes, you simply need to build all of the parts to create the machine that you choose to use. The integrated modules and connectors enable you to easily transform this machine to function as a carving or engraving machine if you choose.
The enclosed design makes printing much quieter, in fact, it reduces the noise by 20 dB. This is ideal if you intend to use this printer in a quiet environment and want to avoid disrupting others with a noisy printer.
With a printing volume of 4.9” x 4.9” x 4.9” there is a great variety in the different prints and projects that you can create.
Best 3D Printers Under $1,000 - Buyers Guide
The market for 3D printers is rather vast, there are so many different ones to choose from. Ones that are different in size, shape and design, software and price. Of course the ones we listed are under the $1000 budget and are still very good quality printers.
There are a few different factors to consider before purchasing your printer and we have listed some below.
3D printer machines do tend to be rather similar in size. The majority are lightweight and compact which is ideal if you are planning to have one in your office environment. Although they may differ slightly in size, they do not tend to take up lots of space and are very user friendly.
Build size or sometimes called build volume, simply refers to the maximum size of the object that your machine is capable of printing. This is calculated by multiplying the maximum length, width and height values together.
You will find that different machines are compatible with different filaments but they do tend to offer variety in what they are compatible with. Filaments simply refer to the thermoplastics that are used in printing.
Rather than burning whilst under heat they melt and can be shaped and moulded to your chosen designs.
On a printer the filament is fed into the heating chamber where it is then heated to melting point and put through a process where it ultimately brings your 3D designs to life. The most common ones tend to be ABS and PLA.
If you are using filament paints around children it is recommended that you buy child friendly ones as they do not pose any risk to the safety of children.
Again different printer machines will come with different software, you may find some to be more user friendly than others.
The software allows you to design and monitor your prints. You may find some software better than others and if this is the case you can always change to the software that you want a little further down the line.
Print quality and resolution
When printing you will of course want your designs to be the best quality possible and this is where precision and resolution comes into place.
A machine that is very precise with its axis and has good levels of resolution is highly likely to create not only a print to be proud of but one that is of exceptional quality too.
Of course our main focus here is the cost as our aim was to find you the best picks for under $1000 and we have done just that. You will find that we have listed some that are a lot pricier than others and some that are cheaper.
They are all very good quality products for their price points, although the more expensive ones do offer a few more features. If this printer is going to be used for professional reasons then it is recommended that you invest a little more in it.
However, if this is not the case the cheaper ones that we have listed are just as good quality too.
Easy to use
For some, 3D printing may be a completely alien thing to them. Something that they have never attempted before but are hoping to learn. If this is the case, there is no need to worry as there are plenty of options available for you.
We have included some great picks above that would be ideal for beginners as they are easy to use and don't require you to have a lot of prior knowledge. Of course a good instruction manual is always an added bonus too.
We have included a few 3D printers above that are ready to be used as they are already assembled. This means that you can take the printer out of the box and start using it right away. It saves you a lot of time trying to figure out how to put them together, particularly useful if you are unfamiliar with this craft.
Others will need you to put them together which may be a little complex, so this is worth looking into before making your purchase.
As mentioned previously PLA is the most common material that you will be able to print with and you will often find them available in different colors which gives greater choice and freedom to use your imagination with your creations.
If you are working with a budget then this is likely to be the most affordable material for you to use as it is the cheapest and doesn't require heat, although it is helpful with aiding the adhesive layers.
If you would rather go beyond this you will find other materials although almost all of them do require heat (this isn't a problem with the ones we have listed) and some require your machines to conform to certain characteristics.
Frequently asked questions
Is it worth spending $1000 on a 3D printer?
If you are trying 3D printing for the first time, it is recommended that you begin with a cheaper printer as you do not yet know if this is something you are going to enjoy.
All examples that we have included are excellent quality machines that you can get for under $1000.