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Top 5 Best 3D Printers for Beginners in 2021
Whether you were looking for a new awesome hobby, you’re a professional 3d modeler, or an engineer using CAD. A 3D printer is going to help you out and in achieving your goals faster, smoother and with a lot of fun.
3D printers are getting more and more popular and now with a vast community of experts sharing their knowledge and skills that are easily accessible, even the beginner who has no idea even what a 3d printer can do will be able to get up to speed in just a matter of weeks.
Are 3D printers expensive?
3D printers have become very popular creating a competition for manufacturers who are now racing to the top to see who can create the best 3d printer at the lowest price. Making it the great time to buy 3d printers. Here we will go over the top 5 best 3d printers for beginners.
Do I have to know how to 3d model to 3d print?
The short answer is NO. You do not need to learn 3d modeling to get into 3d printing. There are many websites like thingiverse or thangs where you can download free 3d cad models that are 3d printer ready. However, if you wish to make adjustments to the existing models some CAD knowledge would be helpful.
Top 5 Best 3D Printers for Beginners in 2021
- Cleality Ender 3 Pro – Best quality for the money
- Prusa i3 MK3S+ – Better FDM printer under $1000
- Elegoo Mars 2 Pro – Best resin 3d printer
- Longer SLA – Most affordable resin 3d printer
- Anycubic Mega X – Largest and affordable FDM 3d printer
#1 on my list is Creality Ender 3 Pro.
Creality Ender 3 pro is our most favorite straight out of the box best 3d printer. It is very budget friendly and it comes 90% assembled in the box. It requires minimal effort to get it set up and you can be printing in just a couple of hours after opening the box.
Creality also has an earlier model of the same printer called Creality Ender 3 (no Pro). It is a bit cheaper but lacks some perks that the pro has.
For example, the upgraded name brand power supply vs. the generic power supply. Another perk that Ender 3 pro has is the 3d printing “pause print” feature.
This is very helpful and may be utilized to change out colors of the filament if you wish to customize your 3d print models, or in case of an power outage in the middle of print Creality Ender 3 Pro will pause the 3d print and automatically continue the printing process after the power is back on.
Creality is one of the strongest 3d printing companies out there. They have more than 20 different 3d printer options available and they still continue to develop new technologies all the time.
Creality offers an 18 month limited warranty where they will replace any damaged part due to an error of the printer.
They also have great customer service and a youtube channel where you can find answers to the questions that are not covered here.
Creality sticks to the printing space of 220mm x 220mm x 250mm or (8.6in x 8.6in x 9.8in) which is really reasonable for most of the 3d prints and an average size of most printers on the market.
Perhaps the greatest thing about Creality is that it has the largest community of users and groups who are really kind and like minded people who are always ready and willing to help other users.
What slicer do you need for Creality Ender 3 Pro?
Creality Ender 3 will work with many slicer software including FREE softwares like the most popular:
- Prusa Slicer
All softwares will run on Windows, Mac, Linux, and OctoPrint will also run on Raspberry Pi. Simply download your choice of software, open the 3d model you wish to print, configure slicer settings, save to gcode to SD card and print. Free slicer settings profiles download is available in the library tab above.
#2 on my list is Prusa i3 MK3S+
Similar to Ender 3, Prusa i3 MK3S+ comes nearly fully assembled out of the box when you buy a “kit”. Prusa also offers this printer fully assembled ready to print right out of the box for a bit of an extra cost.
Prusa also has a sizable community of users that you can reach out to for help or to share your experiences with. But unlike the Ender, Prusa is the “KING” of 3d printers, “The Original” therefore this also reflects on the price. But as the saying goes “you get what you pay for” is true for this printer I do not believe it would apply for Ender 3 Pro.
Prusa i3 MK3S+ is an FDM printer with a heated print bed and print area of 250mm x 210mm x 210mm (9.8in x 8.3in x 8.3in) xyz and is standard equipped with automatic mesh bed leveling.
The new features of the Prusa i3 MK3S+ include:
- Removable magnetic spring steel sheet with PEI surface
- One smooth and one textured surface sheet
- Einsy Rambo motherboard
- Silent trinamic drivers
- Travel speed up to 200mm/s
- Sensorless homing for X and Y axis
- Detection and recovery of shifted layers
- Power loss detection and recovery
- Optional WiFi with Octoprint interface
- Bondtech extruder drive
- Drives filament from both sides
- IR filament sensor
- Extra silent cooling fan
- Automatically detects cooling fan failure to run
- No temperature drift with new temperature-independent Super PINDA
- High quality MISUMI Bearings
This is a great printer to start off on a 3d printing journey even for someone that is not too handy or just wants to skip the assembly part of it and go straight to printing great quality models.
#3 Elegoo Mars 2 Pro
Elegoo Mars 2 Pro is a resin printer. Unlike the other two FDM printers we talked about, resin printers are a completely different game. We talk about this more in a different post that you can check out here.
Elegoo Mars 2 Pro is a budget friendly resin 3d printer that is a great option for someone looking to get into resin 3d printing. Elegoo Mars 2 pro is sitting on a CNC machined aluminum body making this machine very durable for consistent 3d print quality.
This 3d printer comes fully assembled in the box. It has a small footprint and can easily be suited on any desktop. Built-in active carbon filter absorb the fume of resin and offer you a refreshing printing experience at about four times faster than an average resin printer. It has a build area of [130mm x 80mm x 160mm (5.1in x 3.1in x 6.2in) X * Y * Z]
Mars 2 Pro now supports 12 kinds of languages so customers across the world could operate the 3D printer more conveniently without barriers. The newly added 10 languages are Japanese, Dutch, Korean, French, German, Russian, Italian, Spanish, Turkish and Portuguese.
Elegoo Mars 2 Pro is a great little printer to tinker with building great quality superhero figurines But do keep in mind the cost of the resin and isopropyl alcohol.
Mars 2 pro comes with a -year warranty on the whole printer and 6-month warranty for the 2K LCD.
#4 Longer SLA:
Longer SLA is another great resin 3d printer. This is a lesser known brand but it does not mean they are lesser in quality.
The price tag is much lower on Longer SLA compared to Mars 2 Pro and is around $165 – $200 on Amazon. This makes it a great entry point for anyone looking to get into resin 3d printing.
This tiny 3d printer can fit virtually anywhere.
Longer has a build area of [98mm x 55mm x 140mm (3.8in x 2.1in x 5.5in) X * Y * Z]. This is a great choice for a beginner as is it super cheap compared to other resin printers and very easy to use.
Longer provides step-by-step instructions all the way to get you started.
Longer comes with a 1 year warranty and a lifetime technical support.
#5 Anycubic Mega X:
Anycubic Mega X is a largest FDM printer available with an exception of the newly released Ender 5 Plus which has a slightly bigger build volume but comes at the significant increase in cost.
Anycubic Mega X has a build volume of [300mm x 300mm x 300mm (11.8in x 11.8in x 12in) X * Y * Z].
Mega X has a metal rigid body structure and is assembled in no time with ease. The Y axis rail has a dual lead design offering stability and better quality 3d prints.
It comes with a patented heating bed that has an ultrabase bed surface coated with patented microporous coating, allowing the print to hold strong when printing and then effortlessly falls off the bed when it cools to room temp at the end of the print. Altho the heating bed will not heat up over 90 deg. Celsius.
Anycubic Mega X is too equipped with a print resume in case of a power outage.
It time to make a decision,
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Happy 3D Printing!