Users Rate Best 3D Printers

The Makergear M2 3D printer.

The Makergear M2 3D printer.

Are you planning on buying a 3D printer this holiday season? You may want to check out the Makegear M2: According to the members of online 3D printing community 3D Hubs, it's the top-rated 3D printer for enthusiasts.

Drawing from community reviews of various 3D printers, 3D Hubs has assembled a ranked guide of the best models in five categories: Enthusiast, Plug'n'Play, Kit/DIY, Budget, and Resin. The rankings are based on 2279 user reviews of 235 different 3D printers.

MORE: Tom's Guide Ranks Best 3D Printers

According to 3D Hubs' users, the best 3D printer for enthusiasts is the Makegear M2 ($1475), an open-source printer with an extremely fine layer resolution of just 20 microns (0.02mm). With a 9 out of 10 rating, it's also one of the highest-rated 3D printers in general, according to 3D Hubs. In the enthusiast category, the other top scorers were the FlashForge Creator Pro ($1349), the $2,500 Ultimaker 2 (see review) and the Witbox ($2075).

In the Plug-n-Play category, consisting of easy-to-use printers that come fully assembled and ready to go, the winners were the Zortrax M200 ($1990) and the BEETHEFIRST ($2449), both with an 8.9. One 3D Hubs user even described the Zortrax M200 thus: "If my pickup lines were like Zortrax prints, I'd have fathered a thousand kids."

In the Kit/DIY category, whose assembly-required printers are geared toward more advanced users, the 3D Hubs community favored the Rostock MAX ($999), a printer that got its start on Indiegogo and has a large cylindrical build area of 14.8 inches tall and 10.6 inches in diameter. The Rostock MAX is also one of the only printers on 3D Hubs that scored a 9 out of 10.

For new printing enthusiasts, getting a reliable and affordable 3D printer is important. In 3D Hubs' budget category, the winner was the Printrbot Simple Metal, a $599 printer that scored 8.6 out of 10 among 3D Hubs users. (See our review of the $349 wooden-bodied version of the Printrbot Simple.)

The final category consists of 3D printers that print using a smooth, waxlike material called resin, which allows for much higher-quality and higher-resolution prints. The winner in this category, according to 3D Hubs users, is the $3299 Form 1+ (read our review), with an 8.4 out of 10 rating.

The full user-generated rankings can be found on 3D Hubs' website. Do you agree with the choices?

Jill Scharr is a staff writer for Tom's Guide, where she regularly covers security, 3D printing and video games. You can email Jill at, or follow her on Twitter @JillScharr and on Google+. Follow us @tomsguide, on Facebook and on Google+.

Jill Scharr is a creative writer and narrative designer in the videogame industry. She's currently Project Lead Writer at the games studio Harebrained Schemes, and has also worked at Bungie. Prior to that she worked as a Staff Writer for Tom's Guide, covering video games, online security, 3D printing and tech innovation among many subjects.