When it comes to 3D printers, you can’t just buy one out of sheer impulse. You need to know what you’re going to use the device for. This is where 3D printer reviews come in handy. It’s not like you’re going to the mall to shop for clothes – catch a glance of one, then take it home. No sir, no.
What should you expect from 3D printer reviews?
In this article we’re going to talk about 3D printer prices, models, and materials. What’s the best price to value 3D printer, budget 3D printers, and what enthusiasts, and veterans of the 3D printing industry can buy.
If you want to learn more about 3D printers, you should take a look at our 3D Printers article – How do 3D Printers Work? All You Need to Know!
3D Printer Reviews
Cubify CubeX 3D Printer
This Cube 3D printer review aims to be short and sweet.
The Cubify CubeX costs about $2000 on Amazon, or you can go straight to the Cubify official website, and buy it from them.
The 3D printing community has gone cray-cray with Cubify in the past couple of years, mainly because it can print high-quality multicolor 3D objects, and their home-built software is easy to use, and super intuitive. Unfortunately, only the company’s manufactured filament cartridges are compatible with the device. Why unfortunately? Well, because there are cheaper ones on the market.
It went to be a hit in the 3D printing community because it’s aimed at beginners, but it’s also useful to veterans.
The Cube 3D printer builds 3D objects with one, two, and even three different colors with Cubify’s very own software – it’s free, and you’ll receive it in your box along with a flash drive.
Printing will take a few hours, but because it has a slow speed, it will output a pretty great quality.
The best thing about the CubeX 3D printer is that it uses both PLA, and ABS materials – although, ABS is of a higher-quality, and I recommend using it instead of PLA.
PLA is cheaper than ABS.
If you want to print using ABS materials you’ll need to purchase a heated platform from Cubify, because it doesn’t come packed with one. It does include PLA filament so you can start 3D printing right after you unpack your device.
Cartridges can cost up to $100, and refills usually cost between $30, and $40.
The Cubify CubeX 3D printer works just fine with any version of Windows, and MAC, but if you have Linux, you’re out of luck. Also, the printer hard-connects to your device of choice through a cable. The cubex printer doesn’t have Wi-Fi 3D printing available.
If you’re looking for something from Cubify that has Wi-Fi 3D printing, you can try the Cubify Cube Pro. It will cost you more – $2,800 – but it’s also a newer, better model, and it’s designed to please intermediate users.
The Afinia 3D Printer – H800
The winner of the RAPID 2015 Innovation Award, the Afinia 3D printer is starting to be considered one of the best 3D printers on the market.
Afinia isn’t a newcomer to the 3D printing medium, and their previous model Afinia H480, although designed to be useful for the middle tier, has seen good reviews, and overall positive feedback from the community.
The Afinia H800 costs $1,900, but it can print at the resolution of 100 micron, and at 10″ x 8″ x 8″ – which isn’t bad at all. And it doesn’t even weigh that much – about $27 kg, that’s 60lbs. Sure, it will be a little bit difficult to move from one workshop to another, but that’s the price you pay for quality.
It works on Windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, and 8.1, and manufacturer Afinia notes that it’s going to be fully supported by Windows 10 also. If you’re a Mac lover, don’t fret, it works on OSX 10.10, and upwards.
No love for Linux users, I’m afraid.
You can use ABS, or PLA materials, and it comes packed with a PLA plastic filament – which you’ll go through in no-time, so you better be prepared.
S-Titanium Pro Metal 3D Printer
This 3D metal printer costs a whooping $43,000. You can call it one of the best, but in no shape, or form, is it known as one of the most affordable metal 3D printers on the market.
There are no in-depth 3D printer reviews regarding the S-Titanium Pro, because it’s simply too expensive for a tech reviewer to buy, or even rent – it’s also available only as a pre-order. Food for thought, there’s a car manufacturer that made a hypercar entirely 3D printed, but they built their metal 3D printers, and they hold them under a tight lock somewhere in a factory.
Metal powders can cost up to $650 for 5 kgs – that’s 11 pounds.
It has a build area of 200mm x 200mm x 500mm, 3 powder feeders, and the 3D printer is compatible with the following powders: Titanium, 316 Stainless Steel, 420 Stainless Steel, Inconel 625, Inconel 718, Hastelloy C, Brass Bronze, Mild Steel, plus many others.
By all means, if you’ve got the money, buy this 3D printer metal edition, and lend it to me so I can do a proper 3D printer review.
Lulzbot Taz-4 3D Printer
This Lulzbot 3D printer costs $2,200, and it’s the company’s fourth generation 3D printer. It’s open source, and it can print using materials like PLA, ABS, HIPS, Ninja Flex, plus many others. It has a heated platform, and a exchangeable extruder system.
The Taz-4 can scare away beginners, because of it being so open source – many 3D printer aficionados think that only by tinkering with the hardware, one can find out how the device properly works.
It has a build area of 298 x 275 x 250, and a min layer height of 75 microns. It’s not that easy to use, and it can be quite noisy. Although it outputs high-quality 3D prints, its precision lacks, so if you’re a stickler to details, you may not be that pleased with the end product.
Airwolf 3D Printer – Airwolf AW3D HD
The Airwolf AW3D HD isn’t the company’s flagship 3D printer, but many 3D printer reviews find it to be one of the best mid-budget devices on the market.
It’s definitely not for beginners, and it aims to pleases intermediate users, and even professionals. If you don’t think you can afford the $3,100 price tag, Airwolf offers the possibility of leasing their product.
It uses materials such as PLA, ABS, Laywood, and many others.
It can print objects up to 30 x 20 x 30 cm – that’s about the size of an iPad case, if you’re looking for a comparison.
Unfortunately, the company offers only 6 months warranty for the 3D printer, and 12 months warranty for parts – it’s a little bit confusing, I know.
Series 1 3D Printer – Type A 3D Printer
From Type A Machines, the series 1 3D printer costs $2,750, and it will ship straight away – well, straight away in 8 weeks that is.
It has a high durability extruder, and this consumer 3D printer has one of the largest capacity I’ve seen – 12 x 12 x 12 inches.
It has Wi-Fi capabilities, but it doesn’t limit to them: you can also connect it through a USB socket, or an Ethernet cable. It can print using materials such as PLA, High Carbon PLA and PET.
Unfortunately it doesn’t have a heated platform to support ABS.
Overall, the community feedback is positive, and owners don’t regret their decision of buying the Series 1 3D printer, which is also known as the Type A 3D printer.
If you’re looking for more 3D printer reviews, or if our Cubify review just isn’t enough, check our article about Cheap 3D Printer – 7 Devices You Can Buy Right Now, and also, check our in-depth review of the Makerbot Replicator 2 Review.