Best 3D Printers Under $1500

If you’ve got a moderate budget, there are plenty of 3D printers out there that might seem appealing. However, they’re not all the same.

Some offer a lot of visual pizzazz, but fall short where performance is concerned. Some use multiple materials, but offer low print quality.

If you’ve been considering your options, you know how hard it can be to separate the wheat from the chaff, so to speak.

We’ve done the legwork for you. Below, you’ll find our comparison of three of the best 3D printers under $1,500, and our ultimate winner.


Best 3D Printer Under $1,500
FlashForge Creator Pro 3D Printer ($1,349)

Overview
Our top pick for 3D printers under $1,500 is the FlashForge Creator Pro 3D Printer.

You’ll find it more than capable, and the dual extruders make printing anything a cinch.

It also features a metal casing for better durability and lower weight.

Technical Specifications

  • Resolution: 0.1 to 0.2 mm
  • Print area: 225 x 145 x 150 mm
  • Weight: 48.5 lbs.
  • Materials: PLA, ABS, PVA
  • Dimensions: 480 x 338 x 385 mm

Pros

You’ll find the FlashForge Creator Pro 3D Printer is very simple to set up out of the box, and the dual extruders make this the clear winner in the category. The thicker build plate also lends better stability and durability.

Cons

This printer only comes with a three-month warranty, and the manufacturer kept the same display as the previous generation (not a huge drawback).

What Amazon Customers Say…

From Laird Popkin:

The FlashForge Creator Pro is A Makerbot Replicator clone with all of the community enhancements “out-of-the-box.” The result is in some ways better than the replicator 2X, for about half the cost. What’s not to love?

From The Guano:

I’ve had the FFCP for a couple of weeks now and it’s a fantastic printer. It’s been updated with the latest version of Sailfish (7.7) out of the box, cutting out a few touchy setup steps, and prints fine out of the box. And dual-extrusion for under $1400, just icing on the cake.

GET THIS 3D PRINTER


Runner Up
MakerBot Replicator Mini 3D Printer ($1,375)

Overview
Our runner-up is the MakerBot Replicator Mini 3D Printer, which slots in at $1,375.

This is an excellent choice for those looking for a compact 3D printer that will work in a tight space.

It also integrates directly with Thingaverse.

Technical Specifications

  • Resolution: 0.2 mm
  • Print area: 100 x 100 x 125 mm
  • Weight: 18 lbs.
  • Wi-Fi ready
  • Enclosed printing area/case

Pros

One of the high points of this 3D printer is its integration with Thingaverse. However, the print quality is also good and the enclosed case helps cut down on mess and hassles. It’s small, too, which means you can use it even in tight spaces.

Cons

You’ll need to use a raft layer to level your build plate, and the built-in Wi-Fi can be problematic to get working.

What Amazon Customers Say…

From Van Brussel:

I purchased a Replicator Mini about a month ago and it’s been a total blast. I’m new to 3D printing and this unit has been an awesome entry-level unit to learn the ins and outs on. Out of the box it’s easy to set up the hardware, install the software, and get your first print going. The unit is very small and looks awesome on my desk.

From Steven Hannes:

This was my first 3D printer purchase so I was a bit apprehensive. After hearing from my friends about how good this one was I bought it and have been very impressed. Now I don’t know how I ever lived without it.

GET THIS 3D PRINTER


Honorable Mention
UP! Plus 2 3D Desktop Printer ($1,299)

Overview
Promising ease of setup and use, the UP! Plus 2 3D Desktop Printer is one of our top choices (although not our winner).

You’ll find quite a few benefits with this model, including a full year of warranty coverage, a bed-leveling device and a shield that protects the extruder.

Technical Specifications

  • Resolution: 0.15 mm
  • Print area: 140 x 140 x 135 mm
  • Weight: 11 lbs.
  • Material: PLA and ABS

Pros

The included platform calibration device is more than handy – it’s essential. You’ll also find that the print quality is good, and the auto-leveling and nozzle height functions are nice additions.

Cons

The software is a bit limited, and driver loading documentation is unclear. You’ll also need to purchase a separate glass performance board.

What Amazon Customers Say…

From Min:

It works well on small prints, but failed with bigger prints at the beginning. The problem seems to be the temperature. Due to its openness, the ABS cools down a little too fast and it caused the base to peel off when it prints 4th or 5th layer and the whole thing begins to move and therefore failed.

From William Powers:

Really solid machine that is reliable. Only negative is that the software really gives you too little control. Luckily its pretty good, but I would like to have a few more options, such as nozzle temp, which should be standard.

GET THIS 3D PRINTER


There you have it – three of the best options under $1,500. However, the FlashForge Creator Pro 3D Printer still takes our top vote for the best option in the category.

For a list of more 3D printers at various price ranges, check out our Best 3D Printers page.

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