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10 Best Small 3D Printers Buying Guide of 2020

With the advance in technology, the field of additive manufacturing is also progressing. This development has made 3D printers more and more accessible to the masses.

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There was a time, not so long ago, when 3D printers were only available to industrial manufacturers. However, the advancements around the technology have enabled even a layman to buy desktop 3D printers that cost less than $1,000.

These devices may not have the quality that expensive printers do. Yet, they promise to be a perfect device for a beginner in this field. With that thought, we present to you the 10 best small 3D printers of 2020. 

Most of these 3D printers are based on FDM technology. The reason for this is affordability and size. FDM is the most affordable technology compared to others.

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However, you will also find 3D printers based on SLA technology nowadays. Cost is one of the criteria that we have kept in mind while designing this list.

Other criteria include efficiency and feature offerings. Considering all these aspects, we have come up with some of the most affordable yet powerful 3D printers for different levels of users.

Recommendations for 10 Small 3D Printers of 2020

As stated above, this list is not just about cheaper options available. It is also about the most efficient small 3D printers in the compared price range. So, let’s go on straight to the list and find out the best options in the market.

Flashforge Creator Pro

FlashForge Creator Pro

This 3D printer has attracted those customers who were searching for an “easy to move anywhere” 3D printer. Flashforge Creator Pro is relatively the most pre-assembled machine in the list.

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After buying, one will have to give minimal efforts to make it work. This is also the advanced version of the entry-level 3D printer by Flashforge Creator. This FDM based printer is priced $899. Let’s take a look at its pros and cons.

PROS:
  • Using dual extruders, the printer delivers good print quality.
  • Because of its flexibility, Flashforge Pro 2 is perfect for educational and home use.
  • This machine is an affordable option compared to competitors in the same price range.
  • Flashforge Pro 2 produces professional quality and high-resolution prototypes and models.
  • The printer uses MakerBot PLA filament which is uniformly round for consistent flow and smooth and even layers.

CONS:
  • Some customers complain about the printer being noisy.
  • The other complaint is about the extruders. They say they are critical but not reliable.

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Witbox Go

Witbox Go 3d printer

Witbox Go is the first 3D printer with a Qualcomm® Snapdragon TM processor. The 3D printer is designed to promote the technologies of additive manufacturing into every household.

Because this printer uses the Android operating system, it is easier to print. Witbox allows the user to print directly from their smartphone. Not just that, the printer also has improved Wi-Fi connectivity.

The Witbox Go is available in retail for $786.95. Let’s have a look at Pros and Cons of this can-be-operated-from-a-smartphone printer.

PROS:
  • High-quality components and commitment to open-source.
  • Huge build volume
  • Potential good print results
  • The fully enclosed design, the sturdy and massive frame, and LED lighting make the Witbox feels like a semi-professional 3D printer when you see it and work with it.

CONS:
  • The machine lacks general reliability.
  • There is also a complaint about material limitations.
  • This 3D printer comes is problematic packaging because of which assembling is a bit of a problem.

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Flashforge Finder:

FlashForge finder printer 1

This 3D printer is designed keeping in mind the limited space that one gets at home. Flashforge Finder will enable you to deliver high-quality 3D printing even within these limitations.

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This model features a sturdy, slide-in, and non-heated build plate. The construction of this printer is made up of plastic alloy and is therefore solid and stable for prints.

Flashforge Finder is designed with a patented extruder structure and has a built-in turbofan for encircled air and better molding. The model is priced at $499.

PROS:
  • The printer is beginner-friendly.
  • It is Sturdy built and easy to set-up.
  • Flashforge Finder operates quietly and has a competitive price.
  • The machine supports various types of filaments.

CONS:
  • The software that comes along with this printer is not the best and has scopes of improvement.
  • There are also complaints regarding the small build plate of the printer.

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Prusa i3 mK3:

3D-printer-Prusa-Research-Original-Prusa-i3-MK3

This printer is the third iteration of Josef Prusa’s adaptations. In this iteration, Prusa offers a larger print volume than its previous versions, 250 x 210 x 200 mm.

Prusa i3 is the most well-known of the RepRap printers. This is one amongst those companies that constantly likes to edit and come up with a better version of their product.

That is the reason that this 3D printer is constantly under development and improving, with recent revisions including switching from a default extruder to an E3D hot end. The assembled printer is offered for $ 749.

PROS:
  • The printer has an exceptional print quality. It is a sturdy, enthusiastic, and helpful community that enables one to auto-calibrate.
  • Crash detection is one of the most amazing qualities of this printer.
  • The printer has beautiful bridging and overhangs.
  • Its software is easy to use.

CONS:
  • Its long-distance prints are less reliable.
  • The printer has dense support structures in its default settings.
  • Moreover, the printer is not a major upgrade to old i3 MK3.

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Finder 2.0: 

FlashForge finder printer 1

The Finder 2.0 is an offering from a Chinese manufacturer, FlashForge. The manufacturer has made this 3D printer, especially for novices and educators.

You would be amazed to know that this 3D printer was also designed for children. Because of which the printer includes a removable build plate that can be cleaned easily.

The printer has a precision of 50 microns and is capable of automatic calibration. Based on FDM, this printer is available from around $500.

PROS:
  • The printer has a cleaner design and is easy to use.
  • Finder 2.0 provides a removable build plate which makes it easier to take out prints.
  • In its operation, the printer is quiet, reliable, handy, and provides good visibility of prints.

CONS:
  • The printer has a very small build volume and its bed is not heated sometimes.
  • Finder 2.0 does not have automatic bed leveling.
  • The printer’s filament cartridge is also too small for most non-Flashforge spools.

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M3D Micro:

M3D Micro 3D Printer-plus-3d-printer

This 3D printer is one of the latest and most interesting printers which offers the same features of any large and expensive 3D printer.

Seeing its overall dimensions, it is amazing how it offers a print volume of 109 x 113 x 116 mm for a minimum layer thickness of 50 microns.

M3D Micro has a filament compartment under its heating plate for quick and easy reel and automatic calibration. Also, this printer is available in many colors. The M3D Micro has a retail price of $299. Let’s look at its pros and cons.

PROS:
  • Although being a low price printer it produces acceptable print quality.
  • M3D Micro has an appealing design and is easy to use.
  • Not only is this small 3D printer is compact and lightweight, but is also unusually quiet and automatic in operation.

CONS:
  • The printing process of this printer is slow.
  • M3D Micro has a small build area and no wireless connectivity.
  • There are complaints while removing filament while printing from an internal spool.

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Neva Magis:

Neva Magis 3d printer

Developed by Dagoma, the Neva Magis is the latest version of the delta printer kit. Till now, the manufacturer has produced heavier kits compared to which this is lighter and easier to use.

Neva Magis offers a print volume of 180 x 200 x 200 mm and an accuracy of 50 microns.

The point to note about this printer is that it always incorporates its end of the filament detection system as well as an automatic calibration of the printing plate. The printer is priced at around $567 in the market.

PROS:
  • The small 3D printer is manufactured from a reputable manufacturer.
  • Neva Magis is easier to use and move.
  • The print quality of this 3D printer is commendable.
  • Compared to other machines in the same range, this printer operates pretty well.

CONS:
  • People complain about the heating of bed.
  • Wireless connectivity is not present in the machine.

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Ender 3:

3D-printer-kit-Creality-Ender-3

Manufactured by Creality, Ender 3 uses FDM technology that makes printing much easier. Though having double the build volume of its predecessor the printer comes with a pre-assembled kit.

Creality Ender 3’s heating plate needs only 5 minutes to reach the maximum temperature of 110 degrees.

This small 3D printer is characterized by its special filament feed, which is designed to make printing much easier. Let’s look at the pros and cons of this printer that is priced at $229.

PROS:
  • The printer has a good print quality and a solid frame.
  • Ender 3 looks slim and stylish amongst the competitors in the same price range.
  • The specialty of this machine is its big bed leveling knobs.

CONS:
  • The printer comes with onboard drivers which are slightly awkward.
  • The mods needed that are needed in this printer shouldn’t be up to the user to add or figure out which is a difficult feature.

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Makerbot Replicator Mini Plus

MakerBot Replicator Mini Plus

This small 3D printer is cloud-enabled by its manufacturer, to make printing easy and convenient. You can control MakerBot Replicator Mini+ remotely via MakerBot Print or MakerBot Mobile app.

The printer is also equipped with a Smart Extruder+ and the onboard camera. Apart from the smart design, one can also rely on its fast reliability and speed.

It comes with a 28% larger volume and improved hardware for greater reliability and precision. Overall, falling in the price range of $1,299 this small 3D printer is user-friendly, reliable, and efficient. Let’s get to know its pros and cons:

PROS:
  • It uses a type of filament that is known for consistent flow and smooth even layers.
  • Amongst all other uses, the printer suits educational and home use the most.
  • This printer produces professional quality and high-resolution prototypes and models.

CONS:
  • Some people say that this printer is overpriced compared to other brands like Zortrax M200.
  • There are complaints from people about the printer being too noisy during operation.

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Photon Zero:

photon zero 3d printer

Usually, a desktop 3D printer based on SLA technology is priced higher than the FDM printer. But, somehow the Chinese manufacturer Anycubic has managed to produce this low-cost resin printer.

Photon Zero has a built volume of 97 x 54 x 150 mm and a layer resolution of 10 microns. Also, this small 3D printer’s new UV module allows a more uniform distribution of UV light.

This gives an output in which higher-quality prints are produced. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons of this printer which is priced at $169 in the market.

PROS:
  • The printer comes with an amazing cooling system.
  • Photon Zero produces a stable overall performance.
  • This small 3D printer’s output is comparatively better than other printers priced the same in the market.

CONS:
  • Because of its small size, it’s not possible to manufacture complex products on it.

The Conclusion:

In this guide, we have tried to bring together the 3D printers of the varied price ranges. The lowest one is priced at $169, whilst the higher one is somewhere at about $1000.

If you are a novice in this industry, this guide would enable you to understand the rudiments of 3D printers. The mixture of technicality with pros and cons and price would help you get the basics of every aspect related to 3D printing. 

All the brands that are mentioned in the above guide are among the few of the best small 3D printers. Mostly we have tried to list affordable options that are also efficient.

If you are a beginner and are trying to experiment, look into these options. This would enable you to make a decision on your own in figuring out the best 2 to 3 choice.

And, you can finally select the one that seems the aptest option for your specific needs. Hence, helping you learn and grow along with the 3D printing technology to discover the profound potential of the niche. 

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