Are you shopping for your very first 3D printer? You have two options: go all-in on a $1000 3D printer and hope you do not mess it up or get one of the best 3D printers under $200 and learn the basics step-by-step. If the latter sounds more interesting to you, you are at the right address here. Here we tell you about the best 3d printers under $200 that you can buy right now, ranging from DIY 3D printers to plug-and-play 3D printers.
3D printing technology has quickly changed the world of fast prototypes and engineering. Every hobbyist, novice engineer dreams of stepping into technology and using it to make their design better and faster. Hopefully, after reading our guide of the best 3D printers under $200, you can now make an informed decision about which cheap 3D printer suits you best.
List of the best 3D printers under $200
Tronxy XY-2 Pro
On paper, the Tronxy XY-2 Pro is a beastly little printer, with an above-average build volume of 255 x 255 x 260 mm, automatic mesh bed leveling, a filament-out sensor and a motherboard with quiet stepper motor drivers in the familiar Ender 3 form factor. During testing, we found it to be a pleasant printer, with most features adding to the user experience. The print quality was good enough, although as is often the case, there is room for improvement via settings and mechanical upgrades.
The Buildtak-like sticker on the print bed is poor and degrades quickly due to prints melting on it, so that’s the first thing we recommend replacing (remember that the inductive sensor is activated near metal, you may need to adjust the Z-offsets to avoid colliding with glass or other thick bed surfaces). If you take this into account, and the fact that the firmware and technical support lags behind those of other manufacturers who are more transparent about their machines. Overall, this is one of the best 3D printers under $200.
Creality Ender 3
The original good ‘cheap’ printer, Creality’s Ender 3 gave personal 3D printing an injection in the arm, tilting things away from overly finicky DIY kits to semi-assembled simplicity combined with good-enough print quality and plenty of room to make your own improvements. All the basics are there for less demanding 3D printing tasks – a heated bed and a relatively large print volume of 220 x 220 x 250 mm.
The bed also heats up to 110°C, allowing for the occasional printing of higher temperature materials such as ABS (although we wouldn’t recommend making this your main use of the printer without making adjustments). The Ender 3 is, more or less, the blueprint for many of the low-cost printers available today. Users are legion, and there is undoubtedly no question that goes unanswered online should you run into problems. Overall, this is one of the best 3D printers under $200.
Anycubic Mega Zero 2.0
Anycubic’s successor to the uber-cheap and now seemingly no longer produced Mega Zero printer, the Mega Zero 2.0 seems like an assured starting point for the maker on a budget, featuring a Bondtech-style dual-gear extruder that should be able to get through tricky extrusions and a magnetically removable print bed for easy print removal and minimizing bed leveling.
The original Mega Zero, which we loved for its no-nonsense approach to basic printing, has been replaced here with a heated bed and a jump from 12 V to 24 V, meaning it heats up quickly and has to wait less time for prints to start. With these changes, the Mega Zero 2.0 will be more suited to bed adhesion and should be capable of more challenging filaments like PETG.
Because it is a new printer, we are reluctant to place it above the Ender 3 simply because it has not been tested yet. Newcomers looking to upgrade or modify it will find far less help online than with Creality’s machine, but there is a small but active community on Reddit, for example. Building on the Mega Zero before it, and for the same money as the relatively simple Ender 3, it’s definitely worth a look. Overall, this is one of the best 3D printers under $200.
Here we have the Voxelab Aquila, a sort of Ender 3 clone (something all the printers on this list have in common – that’s how big the impact of the Ender 3 was) that is on this list as the hot one to watch. The Aquila is Voxelab’s first FDM printer (Fused Deposition Modeling), which might be thought-provoking with other brands, but gets a pass here because it’s actually a sub-brand of 3D printing giant Flashforge. Voxelab’s printers are part of a shift to cater more to the consumer market and are direct competitors to the Ender 3 and Mega Zero. This first attempt seems to hit the mark.
At its core, it’s an Ender 3, but a number of improvements and upgrades make it different, namely a filament sensor, belt tensioners, plus a textured glass bed – things that bring it closer to the Ender 3 V2, a ~$270 machine. Support for upgrades like the BLTouch bed leveling probe is, apparently, in the works, so over time the Aquila may prove to be a much better value than the Ender 3 as a starting point for printing. Overall, this is one of the best 3D printers under $200.
XYZprinting da Vinci Mini
The XYZprinting da Vinci Mini is a cheap 3D printer that comes with a relatively large build volume and an automatic calibration function. It is embedded and supports wireless connectivity. In short, it is the wireless version of the da Vinci mini marker. For an entry-level 3D printer, the da Vinci Mini is a decent pick-up. In the beginning, however, it needs a lot of patience. The first installation may take more than one hour, but not because the printer requires intensive physical work (i.e., assembling parts).
But, the problem lies in the worthless manual. It was so poorly done that we wondered why the manufacturer even took the trouble to record it in the first place. Seriously, do not even bother with the manual. Just go online and find videos and tutorials on how to set up the da Vinci Mini. The da Vinci Mini is almost like the da Vinci miniMaker. The print quality is surprisingly good for a cheap 3D printer.
It is accurate and detailed and is comparable to the print quality of 3D printers that is twice the price. The da Vinci Mini can easily pass for a 3D printer of $ 500. The wireless connection is an excellent extra convenience. Overall, this is one of the best 3D printers under 200 dollars.