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10 Best 3D Printers in Spring 2017 – Buyer’s Guide & Reviews

best 3D printer
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What’s the best 3D printer in Spring 2017? Here are the best home 3D printers (plus reviews) you can buy today, based on print quality rankings from 3D Hubs.

Don’t miss: 20 Best-Selling 3D Printers of the Month at Amazon

If you hadn’t heard of them already, 3D Hubs is an international 3D printing network with a registered user base spanning 6,900 3D printing services in 150 countries. The way it works is that you upload a 3D design, choose a material, and then choose a local 3D printing service.

End users are frequently invited to review the quality of the prints they have received. Collating this data every three months, 3D Hubs compiles a list of the best 3D printers available today.

These are the 10 best 3D printers according to the latest trend report from 3D Hubs. The list only includes machines that have received more than 200 ratings, so newer machines take a while to appear.

Please note is that the term “best” does not refer to 3D printers with the highest print resolution and whizz-bang features. It’s about the highest quality output, according to customer assessment. This is a subtle but important distinction.

Related: More research on which is the best 3D printer for you? Take a gander at the following categories.

10 Best 3D Printers in Spring 2017 – Buyer’s Guide & Reviews

3D Printer Tech Build Volume (mm) Print Quality Ratings Category Price ($) Check Price
Original Prusa i3 MK2 FDM 250 x 210 x 200 4.87 500 Enthusiast 699
BCN3D SIGMA FDM 210 x 297 x 210 4.85 384 Enthusiast 2800 available at amazon
Form 2 SLA 145 × 145 × 175 4.83 1733 Resin 3500
PowerSpec 3D Pro FDM 145 x 226 x 150 4.82 321 Budget 1000
ORD Bot Hadron FDM 190 x 190 x 150 4.8 260 Kit 700
Zortrax M200 FDM 200 x 200 x 185 4.8 2715 Plug N Play 1850 available at amazon
Kossel FDM 260 x 260 x 275 4.79 495 Kit 650
LulzBot Mini FDM 152 x 152 x 158 4.79 518 Plug N Play 1250 available at amazon
FlashForge Creator Pro FDM 145 x 225 x 150 4.78 3005 Enthusiast 900 available at amazon
CEL Robox FDM 150 x 210 x 100 4.78 648 Plug N Play 1300 available at amazon

#1 Best 3D Printer 2017: Original Prusa i3 MK2

best 3D printer 2016

The Prusa i3 is a proven 3D printer design with a huge international user base. But because of its open source nature, there are a great many clones of varying quality. So it’s reassuring to see the Original Prusa i3 MK2 sitting pretty as the best 3D printer you can buy in 2017. This new unit was engineered by Josef Průša himself, and if you purchase one you’re helping to support its continued development.

Topline features of the Original Prusa i3 MK2 are a new MK42 heatbed, a PEI print surface, integrated leadscrew Z axis, full mesh bed auto-leveling, improved construction, faster printing and more materials with an E3D V6 hotend, plus improved firmware and printer self-test. And in keeping with its noble RepRap heritage, a substantial portion of this 3D printer’s components have been fabricated in sturdy ABS plastic.

Best Best 3D Printer Review: Original Prusa i3 MK2 Review: It Doesn't Get Any Better

“So let’s recap. The Original Joseph Prusa i3 MK2 is a €739 or $845.79 kit or an €999 or $1,087.79 assembled machine that punches way, way above its weight class. While it’s not your super-streamlined mainstream design 3D printer, it easily outperforms those with a form-follows-function approach, brings many innovative and actually useful features to the table and print like a champ.

Again, the Original Prusa i3 MK2 has the best and most consistent print quality – even straight out of the box with zero tuning – of any filament-based 3D printer I’ve ever seen. It’s literally got everything I’m looking for in a 3D printer right now. From now on, it will be my new benchmark which other printers will have to measure against when it comes to ease of use, features, and raw print quality.”

Best 3D Printer Features: Original Prusa i3 MK2

  • Technology: FDM
  • Material: PLA, ABS, PET, HIPS, Exotics
  • Build Volume: 250 x 210 x 200 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 50 microns
  • Extruder Head: 1
  • Open Source: Hardware & Software
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Filament Diameter: 1.75mm
  • Onboard Control Panel: Yes
  • Connectivity: USB, SD card

Check Original Prusa i3 MK2 Price: Prusa Research

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#2 Best 3D Printer 2017: BCN3D Sigma

bcn3d sigma verdict

Dual extrusion doesn’t have to be a pain in the ass. That’s the starting proposition with the BCN3D Sigma, and with the IDEX (Independent Dual Extruder) system it admirably proves its point. But the BCN3D Sigma also works exceedingly well as a single extrusion fused filament fabrication (FFF) 3D printer, providing quality prints that are frankly spectacular. The build space is generous, the operation is simple, and the industrial design is unique.

Minor niggles are that it doesn’t have wireless connectivity; the firmware has a few teething troubles, and frugal makers may be troubled by the waste product generated by dual extrusion. But these are trivial in comparison to the versatility and performance of the BCN3D Sigma. This is the best 3D printer we have used to date.

Best 3D Printer Review: BCN3D Sigma Review: A Fantastic 3D Printer

“The BCN3D Sigma is a large, semi open-frame 3D printer that’s geared for use primarily by hobbyists and professionals. It has an easy setup that’s comparable to the Ultimaker 2 series, which makes it a good fit for a general audience.

The Sigma can print large objects with reasonable detail, and small objects with intricate detail, and in both cases proved reliable in our testing. The switch between single and dual extrusion is seamless, and the IDEX system is a fantastic innovation by the open source community. Expect to see it adopted by other manufacturers in the near future.”

Best 3D Printer Features: BCN3D Sigma

  • Technology: FDM
  • Material: PLA, ABS, PET, HIPS, Exotics
  • Build Volume: 210 x 297 x 210 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 50 microns
  • Max Layer Height: 300 microns
  • Extruder Head: 2
  • XY Precision: 125 microns
  • Open Source: Hardware & Software
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Filament Diameter: 3.00
  • Onboard Control Panel: Yes
  • Connectivity: USB, SD card
Check BCN3D SIGMA Price at Amazon:BCN3D Sigma available at Amazon

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#3 Best 3D Printer 2017: Formlabs Form 2

formlabs

The Formlabs Form 2 has the distinction of being the only stereolithography (SLA) 3D printer on this chart. In those terms, it’s the very best 3D printer in its category and price bracket. SLA works by curing resin in a tank with a high powered laser, providing solid objects with exceptional levels of detail.

This premium device is equipped with a peeling mechanism, a heated tank, a touchscreen display, wireless controls, and an automated resin system. It also has some cleverly designed software to make fabricating models as painless as possible, and the customer support is well established. Printed objects will require some post-processing, however, and the resin tanks are consumable components that must be replaced regularly.

Best 3D Printer Review: Formlabs Form 2 Review: The SLA 3D Printer Benchmark

“If you’re looking for a reliable, professional, high-quality SLA 3D printer, look no further. The Formlabs Form 2 is a workhorse that delivers stunning results.

This high-class SLA 3D printer isn’t aimed at the regular consumer who wants to dabble in 3D printing. It’s for people who have a clear use case and a budget — so we’re talking about semi-professional and professional users.

However, this SLA 3D printer is an excellent machine for prototyping. The Formlabs Form 2 can be a valuable addition to an engineer’s office, a dental lab or a jewelry designer — it really does turn your ideas into reality. It even can be used to manufacture (very) small batches.”

Best 3D Printer Features: Formlabs Form 2

  • Technology: SLA + DLP
  • Material: Resin
  • Build Volume: 145 x 145 x 175 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 25 microns
  • Max Layer Height: 100 microns
  • Open Source: No
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Onboard Control Panel: Yes
  • Connectivity: USB, Wifi, Ethernet

Check Formlabs Form 2 Price: Formlabs

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#4 Best 3D Printer 2017: Powerspec 3D Pro

Best 3D printers in 2016: PowerSpec 3D Pro

The PowerSpec 3D Pro is a low-budget 3D printer, made in China, which bears a close resemblance to the first generation Makerbot Replicator. The machine is capable of dual extrusion, and its high speed and reliability make it one of the best 3D printers on the market. But the flip-side is that the design of the PowerSpec Pro is rather ancient in technology terms, which makes it a bit trickier in terms of ease of use and maintenance.

Best 3D Printer Features: Powerspec 3D Pro

  • Technology: FDM
  • Material: ABS, PLA, PVA
  • Build Volume: 226 x 145 x 150 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 100 microns
  • Max Layer Height: 300 microns
  • Extruder Head: 2
  • XY Precision: 11 microns
  • Open Source: Hardware & software
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Filament Diameter: 1.75mm
  • Onboard Control Panel: Yes
  • Connectivity: SD card

Check Powerspec 3D Pro Price: PowerSpec

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#5 Best 3D Printer 2017: OrdBot Hadron

best 3d printer 2016

The OrdBot Hadron is an open source 3D printing platform built around Makerslide aluminum rails, with bearing surfaces molded into each side. This improves frame stiffness, mechanical reliability, and print speed, but with a marginal increase in cost. The RAMPS 1.4 board also means it’s possible to upgrade the OrdBot with a second extruder or connect an SD port, LCD screen, servo motors, and more. This is the best 3D printer for serious enthusiasts who are not afraid to tinker.

Best 3D Printer Features: OrdBot Hadron

  • Technology: FDM
  • Materials: ABS, PLA
  • Build Volume: 190 x 190 x 150 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 100 microns
  • Extruder Head: 1
  • Printing Speed: 400 mm/s
  • Open Source: Hardware & software
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Filament Diameter: 1.75mm
  • Onboard Control Panel: No
  • Connectivity: USB

Check OrdBot Hadron Price: Reprap France

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#6 Best 3D Printer 2017: Zortrax M200

best 3d printer

Zortrax is one of the enduring successes of the desktop 3D printing revolution, and justifiably so. Constructed from sturdy aluminum, the Zortrax M200 can print out of the box with very little setup, and it produces reliable and consistent results.

The Zortrax M200 has automated bed leveling, which makes calibration precise and simple, and a build area with a perforated platform to mitigate warping. This is especially valuable for working with ABS material. There’s a growing range of additional materials from Zortrax providing different mechanical properties, plus optional perspex panels to enclose the build space and provide additional protection from atmospheric changes.

Best 3D Printer Review: Zortrax M200 Review: Easy to Use, Great Quality

“Our impression of the Zortrax M200 was altogether very positive. This Polish startup has done an excellent job. Assembly, operation and implementation are user-friendly and an appealing solution for all types of users. After running the test once, we found the printing results consistently good. Minor shortcomings: no USB cable, no side covers and heating and calibration take quite a while. However, these are not big issues, especially considering what it has to offer: The M200 is very close to being plug and play. If you’re looking for a good ABS printer, this would be a very good choice.”

Best 3D Printer Features: Zortrax M200

  • Technology: FDM
  • Material: ABS, HIPS, ULTRAT
  • Build Volume: 200 x 200 x 185 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 90 microns
  • Max Layer Height: 400 microns
  • Extruder Head: 1
  • XY Precision: 1.5 microns
  • Printing Speed: 100 mm/s
  • Open Source: No
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Filament Diameter: 1.75mm
  • Onboard Control Panel: Yes
  • Connectivity: USB, SD Card
Check Zortrax M200 price at Amazon:Zortrax M200 available at Amazon

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#7 Best 3D Printer 2017: Kossel

best 3d printer

This distinctive Delta style machine makes a strong showing in the best 3D printer chart. The Kossel is a DIY 3D printer kit from the RepRap stable, and it ships with an auto-leveling build platform and can print at a resolution of 30 microns. Because the project is open source, a multitude of custom upgrades can easily be found online, including a Kapton heated print-bed and an LCD control panel.

Best 3D Printer Features: Kossel

  • Technology: FDM
  • Material: PLA
  • Build Volume: 260 x 260 x 275 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 30 microns
  • Extruder Head: 1
  • Printing Speed: 320 mm/s
  • Open Source: Hardware & Software
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Optional
  • Onboard Control Panel: Optional
  • Connectivity: USB

Check Kossel Price: RepRapWiki

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#8 Best 3D Printer 2017: Lulzbot Mini

lulzbot mini review

The Lulzbot Mini is the smallest FFF 3D printer offered by Aleph Objects, and it’s a great little machine. Sure, it’s only got a six-inch square build volume, but the benefits are that the printing process is much easier when it comes to warping. And the print head can move and accelerate faster, which means it will finish faster, and give you cleaner results on the rim of a part with pointy corners.

Other reasons why it’s considered a “best 3D printer” is its reliability, easy setup, and the lively community surrounding the company. Overall, the Lulzbot Mini is proof positive that an open source philosophy and a great user experience don’t have to be mutually exclusive.

Best 3D Printer Review: Lulzbot Mini Review: 3D Printer In-Depth Test

“Aleph Objects isn’t exactly a new player when it comes to 3D printers — in fact, they were already around when the hobbyist 3D printers were still mostly RepRap, as in ‘self-reproducing machines with mostly 3D-printed parts’.

The Lulzbot Mini still carries those genes — which you can clearly see in the fact that there are still custom 3D printed parts in here everywhere aside from standard parts and the frame, and I like that — functionally, they’re not any worse than molded parts, but with these printed parts, you also get the ability to modify them in whichever way you like and just reprint them.

The other thing that Aleph Objects is really big at is being open-source and not only releasing the design files for their products, but also actively supporting the free/libre projects that their (and most other) printers are based on — everything about the Lulzbot printers is open, accessible and free for you or anyone to use and modify.”

Best 3D Printer Features: Lulzbot Mini

  • Technology: FDM
  • Material: ABS, PLA, HIPS, PVA, Exotics
  • Build Volume: 152 x 152 x 158 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 50 microns
  • Max Layer Height: 500 microns
  • Extruder Head: 1
  • Printing Speed: 275 mm/s
  • Open Source: Hardware & Software
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Filament Diameter: 2.85 mm
  • Onboard Control Panel: No
  • Connectivity: USB

Check Lulzbot Mini Price at Amazon:Lulzbot Mini available at Amazon

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#9 Best 3D Printer 2017: FlashForge Creator Pro

Best 3D printers in 2016: Flashforge Creator Pro

Manufactured in China, the FlashForge Creator Pro closely resembles the Makerbot Replicator 2X. The 3D printer comes with a metal frame and enclosed chassis. Other features include a platform-leveling system with a metal build plate and guide rod to help with stabilization and durability. With over 3000 reviews, this machine is easily the most popular 3D printer on 3D Hubs. But is it the best 3D printer…? That’s hard to say when the design, feature spec and cost has since been eclipsed by other printers.

Best 3D Printer Features: FlashForge Creator Pro

  • Technology: FDM
  • Materials: ABS, PLA, Exotics
  • Build Volume: 225 x 145 x 150 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 100 microns
  • Max Layer Height: 500 microns
  • Extruder Head: 2
  • XY Precision: 11 microns
  • Printing Speed: 40-100 mm/s
  • Open Source: Hardware & Software
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Filament Diameter: 1.75
  • Onboard Control Panel: Yes
  • Connectivity: USB, SD Card
Check FlashForge Creator Pro Price at Amazon:FlashForge Creator Pro available at Amazon

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#10 Best 3D Printer 2017: CEL Robox

cel robox summary

The CEL Robox has a closed build chamber with a heated print-bed and automatic bed-leveling, plus dual nozzles and a proprietary extrusion system for fast printing with consistent quality.

Moreover, the Robox is potentially the best 3D printer for future-proofing, thanks to a set of modular upgrades that can enable more powerful features when you need them. With this eye on continuous development and easy accessibility, it’s a true Plug ‘n’ Play machine.

If you’re looking for an experience that is a whole lot easier than other, more bare-bones 3D printers, then you’re probably going to have a good time with the CEL Robox.

Best 3D Printer Review: CEL Robox Review: A Whole Lot Easier Than Others

“At first sight, the CEL Robox doesn’t look that different from other consumer 3D printers. It’s a medium-sized machine with a 210 x 150 x 100mm or 8 by 6 by 4 inches build space.

The Robox has a black aluminum frame with a few transparent bits and a hinged door on the front, and a spool of filament neatly stowed away in the side of the printer. And this is where the innovations begin.

The filament intended for the Robox comes on what they call ‘SmartReels’, a 600g spool with some re-writable memory that stores the exact type of filament, what printing parameters should be used, and how much of the reel you’ve already used up.

Which means that with all the official SmartReel filament from the Robox ecosystem, you’ll get a nearly plug-and-play experience without having to fiddle with temperature, speed, and cooling settings. That’s all been done for you already.”

Best 3D Printer Features: CEL Robox

  • Technology: FDM
  • Material: PLA, ABS, HIPS, PETG
  • Build Volume: 210 x 150 x 100 mm
  • Min Layer Height: 20 microns
  • Extruder Head: 1, 2 (optional)
  • XY Precision: 7.5 microns
  • Open Source: No
  • Compatible with 3rd Party Material: Yes
  • Heated Platform: Yes
  • Filament Diameter: 1.75 mm
  • Connectivity: USB
Check CEL Robox Price at Amazon:CEL Robox available at Amazon

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