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Buying Guide 3D Printers Buying Guide: How to Choose the Best 3D Printers

3D Printers Buying Guide



Surely you have heard a lot about 3D printers and what you can do with them. There are many wonderful machines that can make your creator aspirations come true. But, when buying a 3D printer, which model should you choose? How much should you spend? And what is the best place to buy a 3D printer? Here is a guide to the essential questions when buying a 3D printer.



Topics in this buyer's guide:
  • What is a 3D Printer?
  • Important Features of 3D Printer
  • Deposition of molten material vs stereolithography 3D printers
  • Popular vendors and manufacturers
  • 5 things to consider before buying 3D Printers


  • What is a 3D Printers?


    3D printing is a kind of rapid prototyping technology, also known as Additive Manufacturing.

    It is a technology based on digital model files, using powder-like metal or plastic and other adhesive materials to construct objects by printing layer by layer. 3D printers can generate parts of any shape directly from computer graphics data without machining or any molds, thus greatly shortening the product development cycle, increasing productivity and reducing production costs.


    If you want, you can anything possible through 3D printing. 


    Education: it can visualize the contents of books, and make the deep knowledge easy to understand through 3D printing models, making it easier for children to learn. 


    Art: help art lovers develop their imagination, and can help display the highly artistic design and accurate image through 3D printers. 


    Industry: quickly and accurately convert the design in the computer into a model, manufacture part molds, or print out assembled objects, greatly reducing research and development time. 


    Architecture: Architectural models were built by hand and took a long time in the past, now with 3D printing technology, you can quickly print the architectural model you want through a 3D printer.



    Important Features of 3D Printers


    Print Size

    According to the maximum range that the X, Y and Z axis can move, determine the size that the machine can print. 


    Simple Operation

    Whether the printer is simple to assemble, the print settings are simple, and the customer can directly operate.


    Resumption

    After Power-off & Out-of-material Detection Resumption after power-off if there is a sudden power outage, the printer will follow the unfinished printing instructions, no need reprinting, saving time and materials. Out-of-material detection: early warning and replacement of insufficient filaments to improve printing speed.


    Leveling Calibration

    Manual leveling: adjust the horizontal direction of the hot bed manually. Automatic leveling: the machine automatically adjusts the horizontal direction of the hot bed.



    Deposition of molten material vs stereolithography 3D printers


    3D printers by deposition of molten material

    This type of printers is the one that more quantity and variety of models are currently on the market, and according to its assembly you will find two types, assembled printers, which come to practically to connect and ready, and printers to mount, in the that you are going to have to do the assembly of the printer.


    Stereolithographic 3d printers

    Stereolithographic printers, are designed for a more professional and advanced user , since the realization of the prints is more complex than with the other type, and it is not advisable to start with this type of 3D printers. Also we leave here the link to the guide of these printers in case you are curious to see them.



    Popular vendors and manufacturers of 3D printers


    Anet

    Anet is a hi-tech enterprise integrating design, research and development, production and sales of 3D printer, 3D printing accessories and 3D printing filaments. The core technology is independently researched and developed by company and has complete independent intellectual property. The product is advanced, widely used, can be applied to new modeling, teaching practice, medical and health, architectural design, handicraft design and personal DIY and other fields, effectively improve product development speed, significantly reduced production costs and labor costs.


    Creality

    Creality was established in China. As an excellent brand, Creality focuses on Industrial & Scientific, offering the best products. Through diligent development and corporate governance, its products have been sold exceptionally well around the world. We have an endless strive to deliver the best products.


    Anycubic

    Anycubic was established in China. Anycubic offers the best products as amazing 3D Printer. Anycubic focused on the 3D Printer. Through diligent development and corporate governance, its products have sold exceptionally well around the world.We have an endless strive to deliver the best products.


    Alfawise

    Alfawise delivers exciting and dynamic home technology. From powerhouse automatic robot cleaners to 3D printers, enjoy affordable technology at every price point. Alfawise combines premium design language, smart design and essential home ideas for less.



    5 Things to Consider Before Buying 3D Printers


    1. Figure out your purpose of 3D printers

    What types of things do you want to print? Just as a hobby? Or do you want to use it in business and sell your model? Or do you want to use it in education? Industrial? These are the questions you need to ask yourself before you start looking for relevant information.


    The best 3D printers for schools / education: Anycubic 4Max pro 3D Printer

    It is a large 3D printer, good quality, closed and at a really good price. It is a very robust printer. This makes it perfect for working with children around (in fact, it is the one I usually recommend when asked by colleges and institutes for a 3D printer.


    It has everything a technology teacher needs: reliability over time, that children cannot reach it, that it is of great volume to print enough things (classes are usually 25 children) and that it has a minimum of quality.


    When you are a teacher, you do not have time to be out of school hours calibrating a machine, you need that once assembled you do not need to play practically anything, set it up in class, to print and go.




    In addition, from experience I know of some teachers who resorted to other open alternatives, and had to end up isolating the printer in a methacrylate box for fear that children could burn with the hotend or spoil the 3D printer, this is already done in the Anycubic 4 Max Pro.


    Finally, the box makes printing materials sensitive to temperature change easier, such as ABS, which makes it perfect for users who want to solve this problem by leaving the printer in cold places.



    The best 3D printers for kids: Creality CR-100 3D Printer Upgraded Version

    This 3D printer is focused on anyone who wants a 3D printer that looks beautiful in their home and does not want to complicate life at all, or calibrate anything, or design anything, or looking for 3D parts. Perfect for young children who want to get into 3D printing


    You just have to see the technical specifications of Creality CR-100  3D PrinterIntelligent operation, intelligent touch screen design, one-touch wake-up printing..., all designed for the 3D printer to detect its own problems and fix them and you don't have to touch anything .


    Creality CR-100 Upgraded Version 100 x 100 x 80mm High Quality Printer for Children- Cherry Red EU Plug


    As you can see, it is a 3D printer focused on children that allows you to touch the right and necessary, prints well and has very cool 3D models in its application for the little ones . That said, a 3D printer, for children and parents who do not want to complicate life



    The best 3D printers for home: Alfawise U30 3D Printer

    Alfawise U30 is an incredible 3D printer designed for professionals and amateurs alike. 

    It trains hands-on ability, and only 1 hour is required to finish the assembly. It boasts high cost-performance ratio - any DIY enthusiast will not be unable to resist. U30 has a large build volume - 220 x 220 x 250mm for most challenges. More importantly, printing with Alfawise U30 is hassle-free because the two resume functions prevent any imperfection and failure due to power outage and filament run-out. Control the process and set parameters on the touchscreen. Enjoy easier and more successful home made 3D printing!


    Alfawise U30 2.8 inch Touch Screen High Precision DIY 3D Printer- Black U30 EU Plug



    2. Your budget of 3D printers

    In most cases, 3D printers are priced based on the performance and quality of the machine itself. Think about what a 3D printer means to you, estimate your price in advance. Then choose the best 3D printer for your price range. Consumables will be your main expense in the future, so a 3D printer that is compatible with multiple consumable types will be the best choice. 



    - The best 3D printers under $200: Anet A8 Desktop 3D Printer

    ● 220 x 220 x 240mm printing volume, just right for you

    ● Piano-black laser-cut acrylic frame for maintain the garage-built feel and the handmade charm

    ● All metal pulleys for improved functionality and performance

    ● Quick-release feed gears for faster and fluent filament feeding

    ● Stainless steel rail rods, gears, bearings and connectors for smooth and precise movement

    ● Suitable for a wide range of customers, young or old, professional or amateur etc.

    ● Multiple 3D printing filament supportable, ABS / PLA / wood / PVA / PP / luminescent


    Anet A8 High Accuracy 3D Desktop Printer- Black EU Plug




    - The best 3D printers under $300: Alfawise U30 Pro

    ● The latest open source Marlin firmware for total control of the 3D printer, makers' freedom

    ● Plug-and-play TMC2208 stepper motor driver, also for smooth operation and precise printing

    ● Humanized UI design, the operation is more simple and convenient.

    ● Super large nut, easier for levelling.

    ● Filament run-out protection and power outage protection guarantee successful print

    ● Efficient heating and uniform temperature for excellent adhesion and smooth base of prints


    Alfawise U30 Pro 4.3 Inch Touch Screen High Precision DIY 3D Printer- Black U30 Pro US Plug



    - The best 3D printers under $500: Creality CR - 10 V2 Updated Version

    ● Two-way sphenoid cooling nozzle, uniform heat dissipation in both directions, with heat dissipation channel, the printing is more accurate

    ● Compatible with far and near end feeding, guarantee the fast and precise printing

    ● Full metal extrusion mechanism for stable wear resistance

    ● Compatible with BL-touch automatic and manual leveling, give you additional option

    ● TMC2208 ultra-quiet drive, silent printing, user-friendly design

    ● Power failure detection and filament run-out detection, save your labor and no worry about time 


    Creality CR - 10 V2 Upgrade Two-way Sphenoid Cooling Ultra-quiet Automatic Leveling / Compatible with Far + Near End Feeding / 300 x 300 x 400 Printing Area 3D Printer- Black US Plug (3-pin)




    3. Supported filaments of 3D printers

    3D printer filaments are mainly PLA,  ABS,  PETG,  TPU and wood. If you tend to use multiple types of materials in your model, you must first ensure that you find a compatible 3D printer. Only in this way can you complete the printing task. 


    4. Print speed, accuracy, and layer thickness of 3D printers

    The three parameters of speed, accuracy, and layer thickness are related to each other. The finer the accuracy of 3D printing, the smaller the layer thickness, but the slower the printing speed. When the printing speed becomes faster, the thicker the layer is, the rougher the model is. When printing the model, you can balance the parameters according to the model effect. 


    5. Nozzle diameter of 3D printers

    Generally, the nozzle diameters of 3D printers are 0.4mm and 0.8mm. The larger the diameter of the nozzle  the thicker the consumables that are printed on a layer, the less the level of printing, the less the number of nozzle movements and the printing time quick. If you want to make the texture of the printed model surface more fine, use a small diameter nozzle.



    3 Best LCD 3D Printers in 2020


    With the continuous development of the 3D printing industry, 3D printer models are also emerging. Major manufacturers continue to introduce new ones. 3D printing research and development technology is constantly improving, producing a large number of high-performance and high-precision 3D printers. Here we have organized 3 best LCD 3D Printers for you.


    Brand modelNOVA3D LCD 3D PrinterCreality LD-002R LCD 3D PrinterLOTMAXX CH-10 LCD 3D Printer
    Price$379.99$279.99$369.99
    Print size130 x 70 x 150mm119 x 65 x 160mm120 x 68 x 155mm
    Print speed30 - 40mm/h50 - 70mm/h20mm / h 
    Print layer thicknes0.025 - 0.100mm 0.02 - 0.05mm0.025 - 0.1 mm 
    Touch screen4.3 inch3.5 inch3.5 inch
    Print materialResinResinResin
    Why buy thisSupport automatic / manual leveling
    Intelligent cooling and cooling
    Uniform light source to ensure print quality
    2K solid-state display system with high accuracy
    Super carbon filtering system to reduce printing odor
    Uniform light source to ensure print quality
    Fast slicing speed, automatic detection
    Support edge anti-aliasing setting, easy to operate
    Hollow model can save resin
    Support hierarchical preview of the model
    Quiet printing



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