TLDR;

I have read excellent reviews about printers from the Anycubic and Artillery family.

Flashforge seemed to have also a great reputation and customer reviews.

I personally got myself a Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4 and couldn’t be happier.

I do 3D printing as a hobby, so mine needed to be affordable and under 400 - 500$.

Read below for more details.

Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4

The fourth iteration of this model is a well made, cost effective 3d printer for hobbyists, and not only.

Depending on your location it comes around 400 - 450$.

Noteworthy features:

  • Direct Drive Extruder for precise and less error-prone prints
  • Quiet operating volume thanks to good quality steppers
  • Dual z-axis system for stable movements
  • Great adhesion on the quickly heated bed
  • Big printing area
  • Quick and easy assembly (95% assembled out of the box)

(Maybe) Cons:

  • I expected it to be a bit smaller, it’s quite a beast!
    • 55 x 40 cm base (64 cm high, 87 with spool holder)
  • Manual leveling, although super easy to do

Anycubic Mega S

Costs around 300 $, and for this price you can’t beat the features that come with this 3D Printer.

Features:

  • Super easy to assemble
  • Direct drive extrude
  • Rigid frame
  • Heated Glass bed
  • Touch screen display

Cons:

  • Manual bed leveling with small knobs
  • Large metal base, which could cause vibration during prints

FlashForge Adventurer 3

Comes at around 450 $, with quick and easy setup, automatic bed leveling, cloud prints, filament run out detection. What more could you ask?

Pros:

  • Practically silent printer
  • Practical filament storage
  • automatic bed leveling
  • Heated bed
  • Bendable build plate

Cons:

  • Uses proprietary file format (.gx)

My personal favorite: Artillery Sidewinder X1 V4

Although its size and weight, I really like the build quality for the affordable price.

The prints are great and can be easily modded to your liking.

If you’re just starting out or ar an experienced “3D printer”, this model could be the real deal.