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Many people equate 3D printing with whistles, figurines, and the like. While it is true that hobbyists love 3D printers a lot that does not mean that such printers don’t have other applications.
Still, you’ve got to start somewhere, right? Now that 3D printing is so cheap and accessible, it’s easy for anyone to get started. To help you on your journey, we’ve picked some contenders.
The best 3D printer under $300 that we wholeheartedly recommend is the Creality Ender 3 Pro.
3D Printer Under $300 Comparison Table
|Creality Ender 3 Pro||VIEW ON AMAZON →|
|MonoPrice Maker Select Mini V2||VIEW ON AMAZON →|
|Da Vinci Jr||VIEW ON AMAZON →|
|MonoPrice Maker Select Plus||CHECK BEST PRICE →|
Best 3D Printer Under $300: 9 picks
1. Creality Ender 3 Pro
If you are looking for a really great 3D printer under $300, you can’t go wrong with the Creality Ender 3 Pro version. It is a definite step up from its Creality Ender 3 baby brother and it boasts of a whole new range of features not found on most other Creality models.
Make no mistake; this model is a very high-quality budget printer. It is well packaged in a semi-kit form that takes around 9 minutes to assemble and plug in all the different cables to ensure it is fully functional.
The instruction manual is highly detailed and offers instructions in 12 helpful steps to ensure that your machine is up and running in no time at all. There is an excellent selection of tools included in the package so that you won’t have to look for anything while assembling one of the best 3D printers around. It more than meets the grade when it comes to the following capabilities:
- Build size
- Expandability(lots of upgrades)
The machine comes equipped with a sturdy 40×40 aluminum extrusion. This extrusion has been designed for the Y-axis and it leads to greater stability. Apart from that, the printer’s large bearings give the machine a certain level of stiffness that aids in reducing friction.
Here, it is pertinent to note that the Ender 3 Pro while being a highly affordable 3D printer cannot be compared to the top tier professional machines out there. Yes, it is an amazing tool for tinkering and creating miniatures and it will serve an educated beginner pretty well.
However, if you want to buy something to help you earn a living; you might want to go for something a bit higher up the price range.
- Highly affordable
- Compact design with excellent print volume for its size
- Very easy to assemble (when compared to similar units in its price range)
- High-quality prints
- Upgradable architecture
- Tight filament path (aids in improving compatibility with diverse filaments)
- Print bed leveling can turn out to be a very tricky job
- The magnetic bed is not easy to work with for everyone
- Brittle filament issues
- Additional adhesion may be required sometimes
- Modeling Technology: Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)
- Machine Size: 440*410*465mm or 17.3×16.1×18.3 in inches Power Supply: UL certified
- Printing Size: 220*220*250mm or 8.6×8.6×9.8 in inches
- Total Package Weight: 8.6kg (19 lbs.)
- Nozzle diameter: 0.4mm
- Filament: 1.75mm ABS/PLA, flexible carbon, wood
- Working Mode: USB cable (not included) online compatible or micro-SD (offline)
- Output: DC 24V 15A 360W
- Max Nozzle Temp: 255℃
- Max Hotbed Temp: 110℃
2. Monoprice Maker Select Mini V2
Amongst the veritable plethora of 3D printers out there, there are very few that are both affordable and offer excellent functionality. The Monoprice Maker Select Mini V2 is one of the best cheap 3D printers around. One that offers excellent bang for the buck.
While this machine does not produce particularly amazing 3D objects, it definitely holds its own in its price range. In fact, if you are in the market for the bet cheap 3D printer under 300, you would definitely want to give this model a closer look. In a nutshell, this is a nifty little low-cost, desktop-based 3D printer that offers very good performance for its price range.
This is a no-frills bare bones machine that is a near-perfect introduction to 3D printing. It is ideal for the home, the office as well as the school classroom. In fact, just about any place that requires high-quality output at a low cost.
- Printing Technology FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling)
- Maximum Extruder Temperature: 482°F (250°C)
- Maximum Platform Temperature: 140°F (60°C)
- Build Area 4.7″ x 4.7″ x 4.7″
- Print Speed:: 55 mm/s
- Filament Types: ABS, Steel Fill PLA, Wood Fill, Bronze Fill Copper Fill,
- Nozzle Diameter: 0.4 mm
- Supported Software: Cura Software, Repetier-Host
- Firmware: Open Source
- Connectivity: Wi-Fi USB, micro SD card,
- Extruder Type Single Extruder
- Warranty: One year
- Very affordable
- Sturdy design
- Works with standard filament types
- Reliable results at lower speeds
- Very easy to operate right out of the box
- It does not have wireless connectivity
- The prints start losing their quality at higher speeds
- Hot end temperature is not always consistent
3. Tevo Tornado
If you are in the market for a state of the art yet affordable printer that is larger than its competitors, the Tevo Tornado is just the thing for you. It is also a great under $300 option due to its size.
The Tornado is a markedly different printer when compared to the other offerings in the market, in large part due to AC-powered heated bed as well as TEVO’s very own Titan brand extruder.
Going from unboxing to a completely built-up unit is an unusually effortless exercise. You will just have to boot up the system and you are good to go.
If you want a sturdy workhorse for day to day printing, you can rest assured that the Tornado will work very well for you. Its trademark Titan extruder can easily handle just about everything you throw at it as long as it is according to specs.
You don’t have to worry about stripped filaments or ungainly tangles of TPU. Unlike many other flat-packed printers, the Tornado does not give up the ghost easily.
- Min. Layer resolution: 50 microns
- Build size: 300 X 300 X 400 mm
- Extruder: Full Metal E3D Titan (Bowden)
- Material type: ABS, PLA, PETG, Flexible Filaments, Wood and PVA
- Printing Color: Single color capability
- Nozzle size: 1.75mm
- Maximum Printing Speed: 150 mm/s
- Maximum extruder temperature: 260°C
- Connection: TF card or USB
- Positioning accuracy: Z 0.004mm, XY 0.012mm
- Heating plate temperature: 60-110°C
- Power requirements: 220V, 250W, 50Hz, 0.89A
- Device weight: 14kg
- File print format: STL, G-Code
- Compatibility: Windows, Linux, Mac
- The Titan extruder is ideal for printing with many different varieties of filaments
- The aluminum frame is very durable
- Very easy to assemble
- Quick heat-time
- Affordable price range
- Can print larger items
- The unit is not equipped with its own spool holder
- There is slight warping on at least some of the surfaces
- The printer takes a very long time to boot
4. Da Vinci Jr 1.0
XYZ Printing has created a winner in the form of the da Vinci Jr. 1.0. This is a cutting edge 3D printer that is geared to take the whole 3D printing market by storm. The machine has been created with an eye towards user comfort and convenience. This is why it is so very easy to set up and use day after day. A really great thing about this printer is that it doesn’t require any calibration.
Its build volume may not be very large, but it is not exactly tiny either. Apart from that, it offers plenty of safety features such as an enclosed print area as well as an unheated print bed.
Best of all, this printer is available at an extremely affordable price. This model offers good reliability and it doesn’t break down easily. And yes, it is pretty affordable as well. If you want a small and durable 3D printer under 300, you should check out the Da Vinci Jr 1.0
- One of the best cheap 3D printers in its class
- Easy setup and operation
- Closed frame minimizes the risk of accidents
- Very quiet operation
- The print quality is below par
- The software is not only slow but also prone to crashing as well
- Maximum Build Volume (WxDxH):5.9 x 5.9 x 5.9 inch (15x15x15cm)
- Gross Weight: 33.07 Lbs. (15kg)
- Technology: FFF (Fused Filament Fabrication)
- Overall Speed: 0.3 mm (300 microns)
- Ultra-Fast: 0.4 mm (400 microns)
- Nozzle: Single Nozzle
- Nozzle Diameter: 0.4 mm
- Language: Multi-Language
- Display: Panel Type: 2.6″ FSTN LCM
- Connectivity: USB 2.0, SD card
- SOFTWARE: XYZ ware
- File Types: STL, XYZ Format (.3w)
5. Anycubic Kossel Delta Printer
The Anycubic Company is justly renowned known for its Kossel 3D printers. The Anycubic Kossel Delta Printer box is a relatively small offering in its class. When you unbox it you will notice the care that Anycubic has put in to ensure that every part is in its proper place and it is in perfect condition. There is plenty of foam to secure the contents and make sure that the contents are free from any sort of shipping damage.
The unit is completely unassembled, and like almost all other budget 3D printers, there are plenty of moving parts. If you are a DIY (Do It Yourself) kind of person, you will definitely enjoy putting this machine together. The highly detailed manual also includes plenty of instructions that are very user friendly and also easy to follow even for a complete novice,
The SD card contains a lot of simple text files that can help you get started printing right away.
The Anycubic Kossel Delta comes well equipped with both printer firmware as well as slicer software and you can update everything using the Arduino software and following the relevant links.
While there is always plenty of room for possible improvements, this 3d printer setup is fairly straightforward and only takes a couple of hours at most, even for a neophyte.
The Anycubic Kossel Delta has been constructed with a strong and high tensile aluminum frame. This is why the overall feel is sturdier than many other 3D printers under 300.
Apart from the fact that the unit is singularly well-built, it can also be easily moved during printing. This is a handy feature that is not available in most competitive 3D printers.
The print quality of this model may be considered at par with many other much more expensive printers out there. In fact, it routinely handles lettering, circles, and bridges with some of the best 3D printers around.
- Model: Anycubic Kossel Delta
- Print area: 220mm x 220mm x 240mm
- Printing size: 180mm x 300mm pulley version
- Printer dimensions: 315mm x 680mm
- Axis positioning accuracy: 0.001mm XYZ
- Layer resolution: 0.1 – 0.4mm
- Printer frame material: Aluminum
- Printer weight: 5kg
- Material diameter: 1.75mm
- Maximum nozzle temperature: 260 degrees C
- Power input: 100V/240V AC, 50/60Hz
- Extruder Type: Bowden
- Recommended material: PLA
- Both highly stable as well as durable
- Tall build volume
- Excellent print quality
- Great value for money
- One of the best cheap 3D printers around
- The heated bed is not included with the bare-bones package
- Some of the smaller parts seem a bit brittle for heavy-duty work
- The unit can be very hard to level properly
- Does not print quickly
6. Monoprice Maker Select Plus
This is a Cartesian style 3D printer in the sense that its print bed moves back and forth on the Y-axis. On the other hand, the print head itself moves about on its X- and Z- axis. This model might not have the telltale popularity of its more famous Monoprice brethren, but it is nonetheless, second to none. It’s a great buy if you are looking for the best budget printer around.
Like many of its Prusa i3-style competitors, the Monoprice Maker Select Plus also has a direct drive extruder of its own.
This means that the action of pulling the filaments right into the hot end will happen directly on the print head itself. The unit comes semi-assembled in two pieces and you can have it up and running in no time at all.
- Printer dimensions: 400 x 410 x 400mm
- Filament: 1.75mm
- Print volume: 200 x 200 x 180 mm
- Nozzle: 0.4mm brass
- Layer resolution: 0.1mm
- Maximum print speed: 150mm/s
- Maximum print temperature: 260 degrees Celsius
- Software: Cura, Replicator G, Repetier-Host, Simplify 3D
- Packing Type: Semi assembled (two main parts)
- Print precision: X- & Y-axis 0.012mm, Z-axis 0.004mm
- Connectivity: USB, SD Card
- UI: 3.25″ touchscreen
- Power: Integrated power/controls in the base
- Maximum weight: 22 lbs (10 kg)
- Very easy to upgrade and modify
- Excellent packaging
- Great aftermarket support
- Good print quality
- Integrated control box with touch screen console
- Open source system
- Very noisy unit
- Actual speed (as opposed to advertised speed) is slow
- Poor quality control
7. Tevo Tarantula Pro
The TEVO Tarantula is a pure DIY machine. This kit 3D printer has been introduced by the well-known Chinese manufacturer TEVO and it boasts of a construction volume of around 200 x 200 x 200 mm. It can easily use a wide variety of diverse filaments that range from PLA to TPU and from PETG to ABS and lots more.
While this is a fully upgradable 3D printer, you will remember that make the Tarantula is primarily a DIY Machine. Once you have managed to understand it properly, you will be able to get awesome quality prints. You can find plenty of printable modifications via both STL and OBJ repositories.
The Tarantula Pro uses Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) 3D Printing technology. It produces three-dimensional physical objects by interpreting the data from a CAD file. It then uses a slicing application such as Cura or Simplify3D to lay down multiple plastic layers until the original virtual concept becomes a full-fledged physical object that you can take in your hands.
- Color Print Speed: 60mm/s-150mm/s
- Layer resolution: 0.05mm-0.35mm
- Build volume: 235 x 235 x 250 mm | 9.25 x 9.25 x 9.84 inch
- Power Supply: 24V 8.5A 200W/FCC ROSH CE
- Heat bed type: MK3 Heat Bed
- Supported materials: PLA, PVA, HIPS Flexible PLA, and wood
- Very good print quality
- Extremely versatile
- Heats quickly
- Great packaging
- Takes around 120 minutes to build
- Poor quality control
- Bolts go clean through the bed
8. FlashForge Finder Lite
For many people, the all-new FlashForge Finder Lite is the picture-perfect entry-level 3D printer that is just right for young students and hobbyists alike. The good people at FlashForge launched their iconic Flash Finder almost five years ago. Now they have created a 3d printer that is geared towards both novices and children.
This is an affordable version of their popular FlashForge Finder model. It is both safer as well as quieter than its preceding model.
- Printing tech: Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF)
- Layer resolution: 100 ~ 500 microns
- Build volume: 140 x 140 x 140 mm
- Third-party filament: Yes
- Position precision: X,Y: 11 microns / Z: 2.5 microns
- Filament diameter: 1.75 mm
- Connectivity: USB only
- Print bed: PEI sheet on the glass
- Nozzle diameter: 0.4 mm
- Print materials: PLA, PETG
- Frame material: Plastic
- Quiet operation
- Connects via USB cable, USB drive, and Wi-Fi
- Good print quality
- Reasonably priced
- Modest build volume compared to other models in its price range
- Poor operating instructions
- The unit is limited to printing with PLA (polylactic acid filament)
9. Anet A8 Plus
The Chinese Anet A8 Plus is widely considered to be one of the very first trailblazing cheap 3D printers that took the world by storm. In fact, the A8 desktop 3D printer kit essentially ushered in a whole new era of affordability for FDM printing technology since way back in 2016.
Unlike its predecessor, the Anet A8 Plus has been constructed not from flimsy acrylic, but sturdy aluminum. It has also been equipped with dual Z-axis double-threaded rods located in front of its aluminum frame.
It is much bigger than its Anet A8 counterpart with an enlarged printing size of 300 x 300 x 350mm. It also features much better surge and motherboard protection than similar printers available in this price range.
- Technology: FDM (Fused deposition modeling)
- Mechanical arrangement: Cartesian-XZ-head
- Assembly: Kit or partially assembled
- Print head: Single nozzle
- Nozzle size: 0.4 mm
- Build volume: 300 x 300 x 350 mm
- Max. heated bed temperature: 100℃
- Max. hot end temperature: 250℃
- Connectivity: MicroSD
- Heated bed Frame: Aluminum
- Affordable price
- Very good print quality
- Plenty of room for future upgrades
- Set up and assembly is very difficult and time-consuming
- Stock parts require a lot of regular maintenance
3D printer Under $300: Buying Guide
There are now many different companies all over the world that manufacture 3D printing solutions. However, the various types of 3D printing technologies have their own respective niches and they all fulfill their own target markets.
Different Types of Printer: FDM/SLS/Cartesian/Delta
- Fused deposition modeling (FDM) is now widely considered to be the most affordable 3D printing technology around and many experts believe that it is ideal for beginners.
- Selective laser sintering (SLS) is basically an additive based manufacturing (AM) technology. It makes use of a laser to transform plastic powder into a 3D object. It is commonly used for product development purposes.
- Cartesian 3D printing technology is derived from FDM 3D printers. Such printers are based on the mathematical Cartesian coordinate system. These printers typically use three separate axis: X, Y, and Z in order to determine the exact positioning of the print head.
- A delta 3D printing system consists of 3 arms on rails. These arms move up and down in order to move the print head.
This will determine the total size of your printing room. The more the volume and build, the larger the object you can print.
Frame Material and Sturdiness
From Acrylic to Aluminum, there are plenty of frame materials for every budget. However, metal frames are almost always more sturdy than their acrylic counterparts.
Apart from that, the types of filament will also have to be taken into consideration. The more versatile printers are more flexible that way. Slower printers are generally less expensive than their high-speed counterparts. However, you will have to be careful that higher speed does not have a negative impact on accuracy.
If you are interested in DIY work you should go for a CKD (complete knockdown unit), otherwise semi-assembled 3D printers are also available.
Finally, build plate material is very important as well, otherwise, the object might stick to it. The most common material for budget 3D printers is high-quality glass. Apart from that PEI, or Polyetherimide, is another material that provides great build plate surface adhesion for many printing materials.
3D Printing has become very accessible
Up until very recently, this technology had been used on an experimental basis only. Its use was restricted to colleges, varsities, and large corporations. However, all of that has changed and now many companies have ushered in a fresh crop of highly affordable 3D printers that are now available to the common man.
These cheap 3D printers are now available both online and offline. Just click on the printer with your desired specs and it would be delivered to you within a day!
And of course, the more accessible the machines, the more creatively we can put them to good use. It seems that hardly a day passes before we learn about another really cool thing that 3D printers can do for us.
From printing human organs to 3D models of housing developments, this radical technology continues to impress us more and more. As a matter of fact, it has almost single-handedly transformed the way that we like to think, design, and ultimately to create.
In fact, with the help of budget 3D printers, we can solve even the most complex of problems. We have before us the hearth warming example of the world’s very first mobile braille phone.
We live in a world where roughly 285 million people suffer from some form of visual impairment. Unfortunately, all smartphones currently available on the market are equipped with completely flat touchscreens, thus making them virtually useless for people who can’t see well enough to tap the right tabs.
However, the era of the braille smartphone has bought about a sea change in the lives of these people. Thanks to 3D printing technology, individual smartphones can be custom tailored and 3D printed to the exact specifications of the user.
The good people at OwnFone have pioneered these phones and their devices allow users to select the names and contact numbers of up to a dozen people. They have complete control of the tactile element they prefer, such as braille or elevated pictures that will appear on their phone.
This is just one example of how easier access to 3D printers is changing the world. Many schools have now also jumped on the 3D bandwagon and they use these machines to enhance the learning experience.
Apart from that, hobbyists and entrepreneurs can also use these machines for both business and pleasure.
In light of the above discussion, we can conclude that while all of the above budget 3D printers are great value for money, but the Creality Ender Pro is head and shoulder above the rest. It is closely followed by the Monoprice Maker Select Mini V2. Both of these high quality yet affordable 3D printers will give you many years of service life.