Many people automatically associate the hobby of 3D printing with enormous costs. However, this does not have to be the case. Of course, printers and materials are not free. However, good 3D printers are now available at a reasonable price. In the following, we will show you the best 3D printers for under 500€ and which criteria to look for when evaluating them.
The most important in a nutshell
- High-quality and powerful 3D printers do not always have to cost a fortune
- Many good 3D printers are already available for under €500
- Before you make a purchase, you should take a close look at the individual printers and their special features and advantages.
- We show you an overview of the best 3D printers under 500€ for every budget and every user.
3D printers for under 500 € – The top list
To compare and evaluate the numerous 3D printers on the market, you need tons of time. We've done the work for you and listed the best beginner 3D printers below:
|Place||Name||Manufacturer||Procedure||Installation space||Resolution||Special features||approx. price||To the shop*|
|1||Mini+||Prusa Research||FDM||18 x 18 x 18 cm||50 microns||Color LCD screen, wide range of supported materials.||489 €||Click|
|2||Ender 3 S1||Creality||FDM||22 x 22 x 27 cm||35 microns||Large footprint, LCD screen for easy operation, up to 260 degree die temperature, compatible with many filaments.||400 €||Click|
|3||Ender 2 Pro||Creality||FDM||15 x 15 x 20 cm||40 microns||High print speed, USB and MicroSD port available||169 €||Click|
|4||Mars 3||Elegoo||DLP||14.3 x 8.96 x 17.5 cm||35 microns||4K resolution, large print area, Pro Slicer software free, sandblasted build plate.||299 €||Click|
|5||Sonic Mini 4K||Phrozen||DLP||13,4 x 7,5 x 13 cm||35 microns||4K Monochrome LCD screen, easy operation, offline printing possible, compatible with many materials.||349 €||Click|
|6||Select Mini V2||Monoprice||FDM||12 x 12 x 12 cm||10 microns||Delivery completely assembled, easy operation, low noise level||203 €||Click|
|7||Vyper||Anycubic||FDM||24,5 x 24,5 x 26 cm||10 microns||Automatic pressure bed leveling, large build volume||319 €||Click|
The best 3D printer under 500€: Prusa Mini+ Semi Mounted
In our eyes, the best 3D printer under 500 Euros is the semi-mounted Prusa Mini+. If you don't have any problems with an installation space of 18 x 18 x 18 cm, which tends to be a bit smaller, you'll get a powerful and detailed device with this printer. The print resolution is high, as is the selection of supported materials. Good even for beginners: the color LCD screen makes it easy to operate, and the automatic calibration of the crib also helps.
- Name: Mini+
- Manufacturer: Prusa
- Installation space (L X W x H in mm): 180 x 180 x 180
- Maximum print resolution (microns): 50
- Features: Color LCD screen, wide range of supported materials.
- Advantages: High print resolution, automatic grid bed calibration, USB printing, various security features.
- Disadvantages: Installation space could be larger
The best resin 3D printer under 500€: Elegoo Mars 3
If you're looking for a strong resin 3D printer for under $500, you'll be happy with the Elegoo Mars 3. This represents the further development of the popular Ender 2, which, as we know, already had some powerful features. Minor weaknesses were once again eliminated with the Mars 3 and the slight bugs were improved. Among other things, the Elegoo Mars 3 can score with an improved light source compared to the predecessor, a 4K resolution and the fact that the printer is already assembled.
- Name: Mars 3
- Manufacturer: Eleggo
- Installation space (L X W x H in mm): 143 x 89.6 x 175
- Maximum print resolution (microns): 35
- Features: 4K resolution, Pro Slicer software for free
- Advantages: sandblasted construction plate, improved light source and FEP film compared to the predecessor, ready mounted.
- Disadvantages: no WLAN function, no spout available on the resin tank
The best cheapest under 500€ 3D printer: Monoprice Select Mini V2
In our eyes, the Monoprice Select Mini V2 is the cheapest variant with high performance at the same time. With an installation space of 12 x 12 x 12 cm, the device is very handy and thus fits perfectly on any desk. In addition, the printer comes with a low noise level and already offers a suitable calibration from the factory. In other words, unpack and get started right away. The various patterns that can be found on the additional microSD card also provide support.
- Name: Select Mini V2
- Manufacturer: Monoprice
- Installation space (L X W x H in mm): 120 x 120 x 120
- Maximum print resolution (microns): 10
- Special features: Delivery completely assembled, easy operation, low noise level
- Advantages: Sample PLA filament, microSD card with preloaded models, factory calibrated.
- Disadvantages: Print resolution could be higher
Criteria for choosing a 3D printer for under 500€
Price / Performance
An important criterion when choosing the best 3D printer is the price. However, you should always keep an eye on your own budget. So in this case 500 euros. So, we evaluate which device offers the best performance for your budget. Depending on your budget, you will of course have to accept a few slight compromises compared to the professional devices. Nevertheless, 3D printers under 500 euros are usually powerful and perfectly adequate for hobby use.
Simplicity of use
As a rule, the 3D printers under 500 euros are mainly interesting for beginners and newcomers. This makes it all the more important that they are also easy to use. For example, you should make sure that inserting the material is easy. In addition, things like the screen and menu navigation also play a role, as does the calibration of your print. The latter should be as simple, effective and automatic as possible to save the eternal “manual work” of manual calibration.
Inherently high print bed adhesion
You should also pay attention to the print bed adhesion before buying a 3D printer. The heating bed should preferably be coated, with the first layer on the print bed being of utmost importance. If it does not hold, you can forget all further steps of printing. When evaluating the devices, we also pay attention to whether a few conveniences have been thought of here as well. For example, a removable printing plate brings clear advantages, as you can release the objects more easily after printing.
Quick and easy calibration
Price differences between 3D prints often result from differences in calibration. With a cheap printer and a wrong or inaccurate calibration, you will never develop the full possibilities and probably lose the desire quickly. We therefore advise you to use a printer with auto-bed leveling. That is, the automatic print bed calibration. This not only saves you work, but also ensures a lower susceptibility to errors at the same time.
Heating bed available
When making your purchase, be sure to include a heating bed. Even with the cheapest printers on the market, this is an absolute must. This should also be able to reach temperatures of at least 100°C to enable optimum processing of your material. If a heating bed is missing, numerous materials cannot be processed. It is then only possible to use a PLA plastic for processing.
Spare parts available
Even if it should not happen in the best case: With a 3D printer, a part can break from time to time, making replacement necessary. This is an important point, especially for the somewhat cheaper devices. If you get the wrong printer for under $500, you may have to keep buying replacement parts. Thus, the actually inexpensive hobby quickly develops into a relatively expensive passion. Additionally, you should check if the spare parts for your device are available quickly and easily.
Addition: Printer specific fan community
Depending on the device, some printers now have a considerable fan base. Both nationally and internationally, fans exchange ideas, give each other tips or otherwise provide support. This is also an important indication for you which device is well suited. At best, you'll get quick help and support from the fan community. This is even more important when the manufacturer may not provide seamless customer service. The community can then be a real support.
Who are 3D printers under 500€ suitable for?
3D printers under 500 euros are nowadays not only more powerful than they were a few years ago, but also much easier to handle. The devices are therefore particularly suitable for people who want to try their hand at 3D printing. A lot of experience in this field is not necessary, with many printers you can start right away and try your hand. In addition, the 3D printers are also ideal as gifts for children, for example, who have a keen interest in technical processes and the manufacture of things.
Since the printers have developed significantly in quality in the meantime, the devices under 500 Euros are also suitable for real 3D printing fans. If you want to print in a good to very good quality in this price segment, you will find what you are looking for in no time with our clever list above.
Conclusion: Inexpensive 3D printing is possible
3D printers struggle with the reputation of being enormously expensive to purchase, consume, and also to procure the materials. However, all these aspects rather testify to an antiquated way of thinking. In fact, technology has continued to evolve. Today, powerful devices are already available for less than 500 euros. Of course, there are slight drawbacks compared to the professional devices, but these are often not even noticeable in hobby use. So it doesn't have to be a fortune that you invest in this passion.
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