Best 3D Printers Under $200 [2018]

Finding an exceptionally cheap but good 3D printer is difficult, so we're here to help you make the best choice possible.

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When shopping for a 3D Printer, the first thing you think about is your budget. Focus on only saving money and you’ll most likely be paying for a printer that doesn’t produce the results you want. Luckily, there are still options out there of cheap 3D printers that also happen to work well. While you can take hours researching how to find good printers that are under $200, we’ve decided to save you time by writing this guide.

Top 5 Best 3D Printers Under $200

 

1. da Vinci MiniMaker 3D Printer

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The da Vinci MiniMaker 3D Printer comes with a few features that are usually associated with expensive 3D printers. For instance, it’s Wi-Fi enabled and allows you to transfer files from your computer onto the machine via wireless networks.

When it comes to size, the da Vinci MiniMaker is about 30% smaller than its predecessor. It weighs about 24.25 pounds and has a dimension of 15.75 x 13.23 x 14.25-in. So it’s easy to carry around and doesn’t take too much space.

Compatibility wise, the MiniMaker 3D printer is compatible with PCs running on Windows 7 or higher and Mac OS 10.8 or higher. Computers can connect to the printer via a home wireless network or a USB 2.0.

The MiniMaker can only use PLA (polylactic acid) filament for its projects. It’s sized at a 1.75 mm diameter, which isn’t bad for an entry-level 3D printer such as this one. So you will be able to make a lot of small printing designs with this printer.

While the printer doesn’t have an LCD screen, it has a bar that users can push to stop the printing process and an LED screen. The LED screen shows the status of the printer with color codes. For example, green means that the machine is in standby mode, while Red is used to show that the printer has received some sort of paint error. The printer is pretty easy to operate altogether, hence why it’s marketed as classroom-friendly.

To sum up, the da Vinci MiniMaker 3D Printer is a great entry-level choice for printing enthusiasts. Not only is it affordable, but its plentiful features complement the colorful design making it great for both new and experienced users. So get this printer as soon as you can so you can start your projects correctly.

Pros
  • Print quality exceeds expectations
  • Enclosed
  • Includes auto-calibration
  • Large build volume for an inexpensive 3D printer
  • Easily operated while setting up

Cons
  • Expensive proprietary filament
  • Low-quality instruction material
  • Mac users might have minor connection issues


 

2. Monoprice Mini Delta 3D Printer

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The compact and affordable Mini Delta from Monoprice is easy to use right out of the box. The machine comes fully assembled, and does not have a power strip for you to turn on. You can plug the printer in, and the printer comes to life.

Thankfully the Monoprice 3D Printer has multiple forums ready to assist you and guide you through the proper setup and following commands and help users get started with Cura, Matter Control or any other data form that Mini Delta might be used with.

The printer’s delta-style configuration and sturdy construction give it the ability to avoid z-turbulence, which basically means that the printer can print reliably from one layer to another.

However, the printer has some issues with some blurry sectors of plastic when completing layers. Still, the 3D printer has a heating bed that does a good job at printing unsupporting overhangs/spans than printers that cost around 20 times as much.

It hosts an all-metal frame, a heated build plate that is used to prevent warping, a resolution of 50 micronsWi-Fi connectivity, and is compatible with PLA and ABS filaments. Mainly, the Monoprice Mini Delta 3D Printer is a good product for those who are looking for the best 3D printer under $200. It allows you to get a printer that’s fast and efficient at making colored models.

Pros
  • High-resolution prints
  • Heated bed included
  • Sturdy design

Cons
  • Unprotected Build Plate
  • Hard to Calibrate


 

3. Geeetech Pro W

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Ranked third on our list is the Geeetech Pro W Printer. The printer has a quick release nozzle system that helps with printing the 3D model. The nozzle has a ceramic shell, which is used to reduce the thermal loss and keep your heat’s exterior at least 100 degrees Celsius.

A color touchscreen is used to relay print information and allows fine-tuning control over the Geeetech Pro W Printer. Also, there is an assisted 5-point bed leveling system that helps keep the printer in place during its operation.

Wi-Fi connectivity gives you control to the Geeetech’s Easyprint mobile app and software. Beyond basic printer control, the Easyprint 3D Suite allows you to upload your videos and photos to other users. Space is also a non-issue with this 3D printer – its dimensions are 200 x 200 x 180 mm. This gives you enough space to complete short projects without having to remove certain components.

Overall, the Geeetech 3D Printer is a great option if you want a powerful tool to help print out your 3D models. It has a maximum speed of 110 mm/s, making it easy to print out your ideas with ease. Give it a chance if you need your first-entry printer to work better than your expectations.

Pros
  • Good build constructions
  • Fully assembled

Cons
  • Slow printing speed
  • Wooden frame instead of metal
  • Wireless connectivity is sold separately


 

4. CoLiDo DIY Printer

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This CoLiDo DIY printer kit is known for its easy assembly. In fact, it’s so easy to assemble that you can do it within 15 minutes. It comes with six modules that have simple instructions and an instructional video that can be accessed via USB.

And, the printer has a maximum print size of 7.9 x 7.9 x 7.9 inches. This gives users enough space to make large prints with this printer. While the print bed isn’t heated, you can upgrade the bottom section of the plate to have a heating element if you plan on working on multiple types of filaments.

You’ll also like this DIY printer because of its precise printing capability. This printer has dual stepper motors and a quad rail processing, and ball bearing supports placed on the x-axis which makes the printer provide a steady and precise printing performance. Both the X and Y axis are driven via the belt so they can be tightened enough to make high-quality prints.

The extruder has a great design, a 0.4mm nozzle, and a cooling fan. If you do want to upgrade the printer, you can simply remove the extruder or print head with fully available parts. With its quick release lever, the extruder can be removed easily to make quick filament changes.

For people who want a printer the operates silently, the Colido DIY printer is a great option. It makes the same amount of noise as an ink jet printer. If you place some foam pads under the printer’s feet, this will reduce the vibration it makes when sitting on a desktop or hard table.

Look into the Colido DIY printer if you’re interested in 3D printing but don’t have tons of expendable funds to get started. It may not be the most precise 3D printer on the market, it still does its job fairly well, especially considering the price. Since it is easy to assemble, you’ll be able to print out your first object very quickly, while also having learned a bit more about how 3D printers work and are constructed.

Pros
  • Large build volume
  • Good printing quality
  • Ideal for educational and casual use

Cons
  • Instruction manual needs improvement
  • Only uses PLA filament


 

5. Instone Easier 3D Printer Kit

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Last on our list is the Instone Easier 3D Printer Kit, which, contrary to its name, is not actually a DIY kit. This printer is a nice, small machine that’s designed for kids and 3D printing novices. Since it’s a basic 3D printer, don’t expect too much when it comes to features.

The printer comes fully assembled when unboxed, meaning that you only need around 30 minutes to set it up, after which you can start printing your first project. This is a plug and play printer that requires minimal work to get started.

Another reason why people like this printer is because of its custom software. The software is intuitive and gives the right printer settings needed to create your first printed 3D model. Due to its software, you’ll find it easier to make high-quality prints as it guides you through the printing process.

Compact and lightweight enough for desktop use, the Instone Easier 3D Printer Kit is easy to operate, which is a critical feature for beginners. The custom software isn’t too complicated and has straightforward settings that would be easy to understand even to people completely new to 3D printing.

It’s important to know what you’re buying when getting this mini 3D printer. The Instone 3D Printer Kit is limited to only PLA filaments because it doesn’t have a heated build plate.

But if you’re okay with some of its minor flaws, the Instone Easier 3D Printer Kit is a great starter machine. This is a 3D Printer that allows you to get inspired and get used to the basics of 3D printing. Once you become more advanced, you can move up to a more higher-end model.

Pros
  • Removable build plate
  • Compact and lightweight
  • Quiet operation
  • Plug-and-play setup

Cons
  • Slow printing speed
  • Incompatible with Mac OS
  • Confusing Instruction Manual


 

Performance Criteria

Now that we’ve looked at some examples of well-built, cheap 3D printers, it’s time we discussed in a bit more detail what exactly are the criteria that make a cheap 3D printer worth having. The main criteria to be concerned with are listed below:

Accuracy

The accuracy, repeatability, and precision of your 3D printer rely on the print orientation, part size, geometry, material, and many more minor factors.

Material

Properties Knowing the applications and the characteristics needed is important in finding the best 3D printer for your needs. All of the technological strengths and weaknesses have to be factored in when finding the material properties.

Part Aesthetics

Some applications need printed parts that are full color, appealing, or fit a good look and feel requirements. Some applications are functional, and the appearance doesn’t matter as long as the parts work as expected. This depends on the aforementioned precision, as well as the types and potential multi-color options of filaments used in the printing process.

File to Finish Speed

Every 3D printer in existence has a unique file-to-finished speed which takes into account the print speed, optional finishing time, required post-processing and build preparation.

 

How to Pick the Best 3D Printer?

Currently, there are about nine 3D printer technologies that are currently out there. Since you probably don’t want to spend $500 for an all-metal 3D Printer, the only two 3D Printer types that are relevant for picking a 3D printer under $200 are SLA and FDM technologies.

 

FDM 3D Printer

Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM) is the common 3D printer that you’ll see used most often for desktop 3D printing. It uses a thermoplastic filament, which is heated up and extruded by an extrusion head that places the molten plastic in X and Y coordinates, while the build table lowers the object and prints it according to the Z coordinates.

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This 3D Printer is a cost-effective means for rapid prototyping and product development in the education and the business sector. It uses a myriad of interesting materials, so you’ll be able to create multiple interesting designs using this printer.

 

SLA 3D Printer

Stereolithography (SLA) works by having a piece of photosensitive liquid resin be hit with a UV-laser beam which solidifies the resin in the necessary positions. Once the laser strikes the resin and solidifies it in the desired pattern, an extruder moves the print object so that the next layer can be solidified.

SLA printers either build the object upside down, making the object seem like it’s emerging from the resin bath, or by sinking it deeper into the resin bath, depending on the printer build.

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Like FDM printers, objects created on this printer need a support structure. And once the object is removed, it must be rinsed with a solvent. Sometimes the model is placed inside a UV oven to complete the processing. SLA 3Dprinters are more much more precise than FDM printers but are also slower and more expensive, hence why no SLA printers were featured on this list of the cheapest 3D printers.

 

Conclusions

To conclude, you can actually find the best 3D printer under $200 for your exact needs, since there are quite a few reasonable options out there. Even if you’re a beginner, you need a printer that can support your ideas when doing printing projects. Conclusively, these five 3D printers will give you enough utility while also being friendly to your budget. So buy one that works the best for you!