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The 12 Best 3D Printer Filament Brands in 2020: The Ultimate Review

Best PLA Filament 

Updated for 2020

With literally thousands of 3D printing filament types and brands - where do you even begin?

Invest in a KG of the wrong filament and it won't just be the money you've wasted. You'll say hello to long hours of print failures, nozzle jams and (if you're lucky) ugly prints. 

Read on, and our collective years of experience with the best 3D filament for printing will steer you through this minefield. Think the quality between 3D printer filament suppliers is all the same? Think again.

Now before we get started comparing brands, if you're simply trying to find out which type of filament material you should print with for a specific project, we have a comparison guide here. 

TL:DR? Just go for PLA, it's a great all-rounder for most prints especially if you're new to printing. 

Don't find yourself throwing out a small fortune of failed 3D prints, having to start all over again and not knowing where to begin. Oh, wait - that's probably why you're here (sorry for reminding you).

We wrote this article to save you time, frustration, and eventually your sanity. 

That’s why we decided to list 12 of the best 3D printer filament brands, so that you can find where to buy the best PLA filament brand available - or any other material for that matter.

Bad filament really can be a false economy.

We should know, we’re experts at distinguishing great from good, and the OK to bad when it comes to filament. 

But first, ask yourself: What do I want from the best filament brand? 

Before we dive in to what's what, it's worth taking a moment to ask yourself what features or qualities matter most to you. Are you looking for the "best 3D filament" that delivers time after time reliability, produces the strongest 3D printer filament, the best detailed and smoothly finished prints or just the richest colours?

Or maybe, you don't like having to choose, and you want it all? 

What about customer service, is this just as important (or even more important to you)? You'll likely want after-support from people that really know a thing or two about the  printers and 3D printing filaments. 

Buying from the guys that really know their stuff, could save you a ton of time getting set up with a more difficult print or unreliable printer. 

This is true regardless of whether you're look for your Anet A8, CR-10, Prusa i3, Ultimaker, Zortrax, Flashforge or any other model of FDM printer. 

Or you might be wondering, where to buy 3d printer filament locally? If you need something in a hurry, sometimes it pays to have UK based, or local supplier to your country. 

And finally price; there are many varieties of price out there. You can get filaments ranging from £9/KG up to £50+/kg. That's a huge difference, what do higher priced filaments offer that cheap ones don't?

Or perhaps, what grief are you prepared to go through, just to save a few notes?

The most expensive filament won't necessarily be the best 3D printer filament brand - but in most cases you get what you pay for. 

On the surface it may seem like you can't afford higher priced filaments, but in reality it's worth considering the the amount of time and filament you'll waste using cheap materials (not to mention spending ages sanding those blobs and stringing off them).

Cheap Filament

In fact, it's more likely you'll find yourself not able to afford cheap filaments.     

Even if the print turns out seemingly OK, it's likely that cheaper filament prints will be weaker and not stand up to rigorous use over time. 

This article is designed to give you a good industry overview of what's available right now. And hopefully let you find the best 3D printing filament brand, for you. 

You're not going to find Hatchbox PLA or Esun ABS in this article. While there's nothing really wrong with these well known suppliers, they're hardly the best PLA available. Here we're looking to give you just really good pla filament reviews (and other popular materials) that we believe are strong / the best contenders.

If you have any questions at the end, please post them in the comments below and we'll be happy to get back to you. 

Here's a full breakdown of 3D printer filament types compared, with links to buy 3D printer filament (in the UK) if that's what you're here for. We're not plugging our range here though (honest), this article is just an impartial 3D printer filament review. 

Below you'll find our best picks, with the types of filament offered from each supplier and any pros and cons of using them. 

If you find this guide useful to you, please share it so others can benefit too!

 

A Review of the Top 3D Printer Filament Companies

Matterhackers

Year founded: 2012

Location: California, USA

Price range: Low-Medium

Price example: White ABS, 1.75mm/3.00mm (1kg/2,2lb) - $29 (€25.62/£20.27)

Matterhackers are one of the biggest 3D printer filament companies, but they don't specialize in just filament. They offer an impressive range of 3d printing supplies, software and printers (over 40 types). Matterhackers was founded when its founders noticed that it was difficult to find a wide range of supplies and good knowledge about desktop 3D printing.

Matterhackers filament offers all kinds of filament materials; ABS, Flexible, Nylon, PET, PLA, Pro ABS, PRO PLA, and specialty materials. Their 3D printer filaments come in all kinds of colours (e.g. black, white, blue, purple, and blue glow in the dark). The company offers free shipping, lifetime support, and free consultation.

ColorFabb

Year founded: 2013

Location: The Netherlands

Price range: High

Price example: Standard white PLA/PHA, 2.85mm/1.75mm (750 grams/1,65lb or 2,2kg/4,85lb) - €35.95 or €79.95 (£28.45 or £63.27; $40.71 or $90.54)

ColorFabb was founded to develop high-quality 3D printing filament and to share knowledge about plastics and additives. ColorFabb offers supplies and printers. The selection of materials is vast and mostly focused towards PLA 3D printing filament (PLA/PHA, co-polyesters, specials like woodFill, bambooFill, and bronzeFill), as is the colour selection (e.g. sky blue, signal yellow, fluorescent green, mint turquoise, standard black, and standard white). ColorFabb offers free shipping within the EU.

ColourFabb are well known in the industry for producing good quality filament, but for many their premium price is a sticking point. 

Filamentum

Location: The Netherlands

Price range: Medium-High

Price example: White ABS, 1.75mm/2.85mm (0.75kg/1,65lb) - €27.95 (£22.12/$31.66)

Filamentum is a Dutch company that offers 3D printing supplies, including filament. Filamentum offers ABS and 3D printer PLA filament in various colours (blue, lilac, yellow, yellow glow in the dark, light green, natural, orange, red, white, silver, and black). Note that Filamentum operates mainly in the Netherlands.

3D FilaPrint

Location: United Kingdom

Price range: Low-Medium

Price example: White ABS, 1.75mm (1kg/2,2lb) - £20.95 (€26.47/$29.98)

3D FilaPrint is a UK 3D printing filament company. Materials include ABL, PLS, HIPS, and Nylon 6. 3D FilaPrint offers its products in multiple colours; different shades of black and white, green, yellow, blue, and purple. Free delivery within the UK is included in the price. 

3D Prima

Location: Sweden

Price range: Low-Medium

Price example: White ABS filament, 1.75mm/3mm (1kg/2,2lb) - €29.90 ($33.86/£23.65)

3D Prima is a company selling 3D printing supplies, printers, scanners and software. If you've searched for filament on Amazon, you've likely seen these guys pop up, they have a good standing on the rain-forest themed super-site. Materials include PLA, ABS, HIPS, Nylon, PETG, and special filaments, and they come in colours like brown, white, black, blue, yellow, orange, red, green, and purple. 3D Prima offers free shipping for orders over €100 within the EU.

Faberdashery

Year founded: 2011

Location: United Kingdom

Price range: High

Price example: White PLA, 1.75mm (1m/3,28ft or 100m/328ft) - £0.24 or £15.00 (€0.30 or €18.96 ; $0.34 or $21.48)

Faberdashery is a filament supplier that specializes in PLA filaments and offers consultancy services to help organisations integrate 3D printing into their businesses. Colours include mixed packages, different shades of black, white, red, pink, green, orange, yellow, and blue.

Formfutura

Location: The Netherlands

Price range: Low-Medium

Price example: White ABS, 1.75mm/2.85mm (1kg/2,2lb or 2.3kg/5lb) - €28.95 or €59.95 (£22.91 or £47.43 ; $32.81 or $67.95)

Formfutura sells PLA, ABS, HIPS, HDGlass, and speciality filaments in mixed packages, black, blue, yellow, green, and red. While they may not be the absolute best 3D printing material, Formfutura strives to make 3D printing affordable and available for everyone. Customers are welcome to share their designs with the company.

IC3D 

Location: Ohio, USA

Price range: High

Price example: White/black ABS, 3mm/1.75mm (2lb/0,9kg or 5lb/2,26kg) - $34.99 or $79.99 (€30.87 or €70.58 ; £24.43 or £55.84)

IC3D offers 3D printing supplies and printers. IC3D sells ABS and PLA filaments in black, white, blue, green, red, orange, natural, plain, and grey. While not the best ABS filament brand on the market, it's acceptable. Notably, IC3D has a strong presence on eBay. 

LulzBot

Year founded: 2011

Location: Colorado, USA

Price range: High

Price example: White ABS, 3mm (1kg/2,2lb) - $42.95 (€37.9/£29.98)

LulzBot is a product line of Aleph Objects, Inc. The company is best known for their TAZ range of printers. They also resell their own range and other brands of filament.

For example, while they offer 3D PLA filament they also do ABS, Nylon, HIPS, NinjaFlex and specialties like copperFill and bambooFill. Colours include black, blue, brown, dark silver, yellow, glow in the dark, green, light silver, magenta, and medium purple.

Makerbot

Year founded: 2009

Location: New York City, USA  

Price range: High

Price example: White ABS, 1.75mm (1kg/2,2lb) - $48 (€42.36/£33.5)

MakerBot is one of the biggest 3D printing companies. It offers supplies, printers, apps, and more. For example, MakerBot organizes classes in 3D printing in its knowledge centre, MakerBot Learning.

Filament materials include PLA, ABS, flexible and dissolvable. The colour selection is vast (e.g. red, yellow, black, white, green, blue, orange, purple, grey, and natural).

Proto-Pasta

Location: Washington, USA  

Price range: High

Price example: Carbon fiber PLA, 1.75mm/2.85mm (500g/1,1lb or 3kg/6,6lb)-  $29.99 or $179.95 (€26.46 or €158.79 ; £20.93 or £125.59)

Proto-Pasta is a fun-orientated brand and is a product line of ProtoPlant, an engineering firm based in the US. Proto-Pasta offers HTPLA (high tempurature) and PLA filaments. Most of the filaments are available in black or different shades of brown.

Fun fact: the name Proto-Pasta derives from the pasta-like shape of filament.

taulman 3D

Location: Missouri, USA  

Price range: High

Price example: White n-vent, 1.75mm/2.85mm (1lb/2,2lb) - $44 (€38.83/£30.71) + Non-domestic shipping - $34 for up to 8 spools (€30/£23.72)

Taulman 3D is a 3D printing company that offers filaments. It’s specialized in selling filament materials like Nylon, t-glase, n-vent and specialty materials. In our opinion Nylon is one of the best filament for 3D printing just because of it's range of uses. Their T-Glase is similar to our best PETG filament. Filaments come in black, white, red, green, blue, and yellow.

If you're looking for the outright strongest 3D filament, a blend of Carbon Fiber and Nylon 12 is the best Nylon filament you can get. There are many strong 3D printing materials, but you won't beat that. 

Conclusion:

Choose carefully; high quality filament = high quality 3D printing

It's that simple.

Make sure you keep your filament in good condition too, storing it correctly and don't inadvertently ruin it. 

So now you have the low down on what’s available, and hopefully you’ll better informed to make the best decision where your filament brands are concerned. If you were looking for more of a 3D printing filament guide, click here. 

As mentioned earlier, it's best to ensure you're looking at the right filament manufacture for your needs. Want faster delivery and no hidden import charges for example? Look for a UK supplier of filament. 

Want the reassuring backup of a full team of highly experienced technical support specialists on hand to assist you with any printing problems? Then choose a filament brand that really knows their stuff.

Ahem... us?

If 3D printing filament cost is a serious issue for you, we suggest calculating the cost of your prints using this filament length calculator. Just make sure you weigh up all the costs of printing with cheap filament, your time may be worth more to you in the long-run. 

What we do suggest is if you're not sure and want to test the quality before investing in a couple of KG rolls - order a sample to test. Any supplier confident in their product will allow you to do this. 

To recap, just make sure the 3D printer filament maker you’re looking for:

  • Offers a reliable quality (you don’t want jams or inconsistent prints)
  • The after-support to back it up, excellent technical customer service is as important as quality, especially in an industry still so new. 
  • Allows you to order sample lengths to test, before committing to a larger roll. 

The Best 3D Printer Filament

Follow these rules and your 3D printing experience will be significantly less turbulent. As a company that 3D prints extensively ourselves, our experienced support specialists are on hand to guide you through this process as much as possible. Always look for the best 3D print filament, and you'll save yourself time, money and frustration in the long run.

Ever wondered how much filament is on a spool in meters? Click here to check out our spool length chart for various spool sizes, materials and diameters. 

Alternatively just drop us an email with any questions you have. We’re here to help. 

We hope this article cleared up the best place to buy 3D printer filament, for you. If you can think of other brands, why not add them to the comments below! 

Feel free to read into which of the various types of filament; PLA, ABS, PETG, PLA+, Nylon, ASA, Polycarbonate, Flexible PLA, TPU, HIPS, PVA, Break-Away, Carbon Fibre, PMMA or Cleaning Filament are right for you in our comparison guide. 

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