3D Printing Trends May 2015

This trend report provides a comprehensive and unmatched perspective on the current state of the 3D printing industry. Based on data from our 3D Hubs community, which includes over 16,000 printers in over 150 countries, and thousands of 3D print orders every month, we are excited to show you the printers people love and what’s trending in the world of 3D printing.

Looking for which 3D printer to buy? Check out the 2015 Printer Guide, our comprehensive report based on reviews of 2279 verified 3D printer owners.


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pngHighest Rated 3D Printers

Desktop Printers

Note: these are the top 20 rated printers out of 450 printer models listed on our platform, based on print quality ratings from our customers. High quality is in this case not the same as high resolution. The quality rating takes the max. resolution of a printer into account. Only printers with more than 35 reviews are included in these statistics.

Insights: Highest Rated Desktop Printers

In May, the Form 1+ reclaimed the crown as the highest rated desktop printer. With 400+ reviews, it's also the most popular resin printer on 3D Hubs.

MakerBot's Mini is on the rise, jumping from #6 to #2 this month. Zortrax's M200 lost the pole position, claiming 3rd place in this month's report.

DeltaWASP, the high-end delta printer from Italy is steadily moving up the chart, now in the 4th spot, while Lulzbot's Taz 4 skyrocketed from #14 into the top 5. The Flashforge Creator also had a spectacular rise, jumping from the 15th spot to the 8th position.

There are no new printers in the top 20 this month. Instead, May is the "return to glory" month. The original Replicator from MakerBot and the first Ultimaker appear again in our top 20. Congratulations to both.

Industrial Printers

Note: only printers with more than 10 reviews are included in these statistics.

Insights: Highest Rated Industrial Printers

The Objet Eden 260 and Projet 3500 HDMax both managed to secure complete 5 star ratings, taking home first and second place respectively, while the ProJet 460Plus fell back slightly, claiming 3rd place.

The Objet Pro 30 moved up 2 spots and now claims #6, and new to our list is the uPrint, Stratasys' entry level FDM printer, which claimed the 10th position.

We also have good news to those interested in full-color sandstone prints! Just recently we announced full-color support on 3D Hubs and and an integration with Sketchfab, to provide thousands of 3D printable models.
pngTrending Printers

Note: only printers with a quantity of 30+ on our platform are included in these statistics.

Insights: Trending Printers

We have a new winner in this category, which shows the fastest growing printers on 3D Hubs. The CTC-3D, made in China, climbed up 12 spots with 72% MoM growth. The 3rd generation Cube 3D from 3D Systems takes the 2nd spot and bq's Prusa i3 Hephestos claims the bronze this month. All printers on the podium grew by at least 50% MoM, a good sign for those manufacturers.

An affordable kit printer from Germany, the Velleman K8400 jumped to #4, followed by the Creatr HS from the Dutch company Leapfrog.

Two more 3D printers are new to our list this month, both having begun their journey on crowdfunding platforms: the CEL Robox and the Craftbot.
pngTop Print Cities

Insights: Top Print Cities

It's called "The City That Never Sleeps" for a reason. New York extended its lead as the top print city, with 248 3D printers available on 3D Hubs. At #2, Milan breached the impressive 200 mark, while Los Angeles grew a staggering 18.4%, extending its lead ahead of London. At #9, Boston sprinted into our top 10 with a strong 18.2% growth.

May brings dozens of 3D Hubs events all over the world, so take a look at our calendar and come join us.
pngPrinter Model Distribution

Insights: Printer Model Distribution

Just a month behind the Ultimaker 2, the Prusa i3 and the MakerBot Replicator 2 both breached the 1000 mark. Following those top 3, the dual extruder Replicator 2X overtook the original Ultimaker in the 4th spot. The Form 1+ is the most popular resin printer on our platform, with 322 locations.
pngPrinter Manufacturer Distribution

Insights: Printer Manufacturer Distribution

RepRap based printers held onto the top spot, beating out MakerBot and Ultimaker.

Note: RepRap is not a manufacturer but has been treated as such in this chart. Also, we have decided to list Stratasys' industrial line-up and the MakerBot family separately moving forward.
pngPopular Printers by Region

Insights: Popular Printers by Region

The Form 1+ is becoming increasingly popular in North America, jumping straight to #4 and beating out the Ultimaker 2.

In Europe,the top 5 remains unchanged, with the Ultimaker 2 increasing its relative market share.

The Ultimaker 2 is gaining traction in the Asia Pacific region as well. It is the only printer in the top 5 that managed to increase its relative market share.

In South America, the MakerBot Replicator 2X overtook the RepRap for the #2 spot.
pngPrinter Listings

Insights: International Growth

Since the announcement of our partnership with Thingiverse the clutch has dropped and new Hub sign-ups are in 5th gear. We’ve just passed 16,000 printers on the platform, adding 2,500 new locations in one month.
pngPopular Print Categories

Average Order Value per Category

Insights: Average Order Value per Category

The average order value for Art/Fashion prints increased again this month. This also occurred in the Gadget, Prototype and Scale model categories.

Insights: Popular Print Categories

The share of Prototype and Hobby/DIY prints picked up steam this month, while the demand for Gadget prints slightly decreased, again, since our last report.
pngColor Distribution

Insights: Color Distribution

The demand for White and Black prints increased this month, while Red and Green fell back slightly.
png3D Printing Map of the World

Insights: 3D Printing Map of the World

The map above represents the geographic distribution of over 16,000 printers on our platform. Providing access to over 150 countries and counting, it's safe to say 3D Hubs is in more countries than McDonalds!

Two new countries have recently joined. We’re pleased to welcome Eritrea and Iraq to the 3D printing community.

See the full screen version here .

Want to learn more and track changes?

You can find the previous releases in the archive: