Feels like technology only feels like yesterday was hot, new and exciting, but it’s been a few years since they gained popularity And while the biggest hurdle to 3D printing has always been the cost of the hardware, this is no longer an issue these days.

A few years ago, even the cheapest 3D printers were uncomfortably close to the $1,000 mark. It’s amazing how far we’ve come in just a year or two, because now you can get a quality 3D printer for as little as $400 — or if you’re willing to sacrifice a few features, you can even go for $100.

Please note that these prices only for the printer. Materials such as filament 3D printing filament will cost extra, but that’s to be expected. After all, you can’t use a traditional printer without ink, right? Material costs are only part of the process.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at a few 3D printers that are available on the cheap and whether they are worth buying.

Peach Printer [больше не доступен]

When the campaign launched at the end of 2013 Peach Printer Kickstarter, many people rolled their eyes and wrote it off as a scam. Was it really possible to make a 3D printer that could be sold for as little as $100? Most people didn’t think so.

A couple of months ago — almost two years after a Kickstarter campaign that actually raised $600,000 on top of the $50,000 they asked for — news broke that Peachy Printer v1.0 was pretty much complete.

Here’s how it works: The Peachy Printer uses a resin-based system that sits inside a large can. The jar gradually fills with water, and as it fills up, the resin that floats on top rises with the water. The laser shines on the resin and hardens in layers starting from the bottom up.

The printer itself seems a bit too flimsy for anything other than everyday home use, but at just $100 this is excellent a purchase for anyone who is interested in 3D printing, but not sure if they are ready to take on all the obligations.

Note: We cheated a bit with this — the Peachy Printer is currently in pre-order with an estimated shipping period between September and December 2015 for new orders, but we just had to include it due to the incredible price.

Q3D OneUp ($200)

Before Peachy Printer Q3D OneUp held the title of the world’s cheapest 3D printer as no other printer could match its super-low price. Unfortunately, this low price came — and still comes — with a few hidden costs.

The OneUp build area is a measly 3.9″x3.9″x4.9″ which is absolutely small compared to the average home 3D printer. Actual print quality is okay, but nowhere near the best, and some users have reported fuzzy build quality on the printer itself.

But the kicker is terrible service and QU-BD quality assurance. In the past, they sent components that accidentally caught fire and did not offer an apology or replacements. If you ever need help with OneUp, you won’t get it from them.

And in the end, the difference between $200 and $350 (the next cheapest 3D printer) is small enough that we recommend waiting a bit, saving some money, and skipping OneUp, at least until QU-BD gets them. act together.

M3D Micro ($350)

Marketing M3D Micro is the first truly consumer 3D printer and is an entry-level product with a sleek design and intuitive controls. It only launched on Kickstarter in early 2014, but is already shipping devices.

Like the OneUp, the Micro has a tiny build area with a slightly larger base but a smaller height: 4.3″x4.5″x2.9″. Given the name of the printer, this is clearly intentional, but in the end, the type of material you can print will be limited in size.

The printer comes in 5 different colors (black, blue, green, orange which are standard, and silver which costs an additional $25). The print is high quality and reliable, so consider getting one if you don’t mind the size.

For more details, check out our M3D Micro review

Folger Tech Kossel 2020 ($350)

The Kossel family of 3D printers is unique in that it is based on an open source platform that uses delta design: instead of moving the extrusion head along three separate axes, it hangs from three separate supports.

Because of the hanging head Folger Tech Kossel 2020 has a circular build area rather than the more traditional rectangular space. The print space diameter is 8.3 inches with a height of up to 12.2 inches — much larger than the printers mentioned above.

This particular model comes with an auto-alignment feature that sets the print bed at right angles without requiring manual adjustment. It’s a handy feature, but it’s so useful that it can also be considered essential for print enthusiasts.

The disadvantage of this printer is that you will have to build it from scratch. All necessary components are supplied with the kit, but the assembly process requires a lot of time and technical knowledge. Not recommended for DIY beginners.

Printrbot Play [Больше не доступно] ($400)

If you were to ask any 3D printing community for recommendations on a cheap printer, most of them would probably indicated would you on Printrbot Play . At $400, it’s not exactly cheap for those who aren’t already in love with 3D printing, but it’s the cheapest option you’d want to go without sacrificing quality or features.

The Play is designed for an entry-level device, so it also has a small build area: 4″x4″x5″. Regardless, you get superior print quality and the assurance that the majority of Printrbot customers are satisfied with their purchases.

One bonus: You can order Printrbots as in disassembled or pre-assembled, and there is no price difference. For beginners, we recommend the pre-assembled version. You also get a one-year license for Fusion 360, a 3D CAD program that you can use to create your own 3D printed molds.

But if you know for sure you’re going to be doing a lot of 3D printing, you should consider spending an extra $200 on the Printrbot Simple model, which has a 6″x6″x6″ build area.

Which one suits you?

There are two reasons why you want a cheap 3D printer: either you want to test the water for a minimal investment, or you want a small but reliable printer that you can «buy for life».

In the first case, Peach Printer is probably the smartest move because it is So cheap. In the latter case, it’s not much safer than Printrbot Play .

Once you’ve made your purchase, here are a couple of 3D printing ideas at home. you can try as you get used to the new device. We also recommend organizing 3D printing in this office. which you may find useful.

What is your favorite cheap 3D printer? Are there other models available that we were missing? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!

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