Dual extruder 3D printers free you from your single-color slumber. 3D print with multiple colors, multiple materials for strengthening certain areas, or with dissolvable filaments like PVA or HIPS for a sleek surface finish.
We’ve been lucky enough to try several dual extruder 3D printers first hand, and have prepared our recommendations for the best dual extruders available in 2022. We also explain the differences between different types of dual extruder (IDEX, mix-color 3D printing, dual extrusion upgrades) and whether it’s worth it for you to upgrade.
3DSourced is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more
The Best Dual Extruder 3D Printer Buyer's Guide
|Name and Brand||Max print volume (mm)||Price||Best Price At||Alternative Purchase Option|
|Geeetech A10M / A20M||255 x 255 x 255||$279 / $379||Amazon here||Amazon here|
|BIBO 3D Printer||214 x 180 x 160||$599||Amazon here|
|Flashforge Creator Pro 2||225 x 145 x 150||$649||Amazon here|
|Palette 2S / Pro||-||$599 / $799||Matterhackers here|
|Prusa Multi Material Upgrade||-||$299||Prusa Store here|
|BCN3D Sigma D25||400 x 300 x 200||$3,995||Dynamism Store here||Matterhackers here|
|Ultimaker S3||230 x 190 x 200||$3,850||Dynamism Store here||Matterhackers here|
|Raise3D Pro2||305 x 305 x 300||$3,999||Dynamism Store here||Amazon here|
|Ultimaker S5||330 x 240 x 300||$5,995||Dynamism Store here|
What are the advantages of a dual extruder 3D printer?
The main benefits of a dual extruder 3D printer include:
- Better for supports: one extruder can print your chosen material, for example ABS or PLA, while the second extruder prints water-soluble supports, such as with PVA filament. These supports dissolve easily in water and leave you with smoother prints without having to remove them by hand.
- Multiple colors: dual filament 3D printers can print multiple colors of the same filament type, such as PLA filament, for a stunning multi-colored part.
- Multiple parts simultaneously (IDEX): with IDEX 3D printers such as the BCN3D Sigma D25, these printers have two extruders that operately completely separately, and can print different parts simultaneously.
What is the best 3D printer with a dual extruder?
Therefore, we created our ranking of the best dual extruder 3D printers currently on the market. We ranked these printers based on their price-performance ratio, reliability, build volume, ease of use, and various other features.
We have split our buyer’s guide into sections:
- The best budget dual extruder 3D printers under $1,000
- The best professional dual extruder 3D printers
- The best dual extrusion upgrades
Budget Dual Extruder 3D Printers (Under $1,000)
1. Geeetech A20M / A10M — Best Budget Dual Extruder 3D Printers
- A10M price: $279 — Available on Amazon worldwide here
- A20M price: $379 — Available on Amazon worldwide here
- Build volume: A10M = 220 x 220 x 260 / A20M = 255 x 255 x 255 mm
These fascinating 3D printers bend the rules of what actually defines dual extruder 3D printing. Allow us to explain: they can be loaded up with two separate filaments, such as red and yellow PLA — but it will come out of one nozzle, mixing the two colors within the print. Some call this dual nozzle 3D printing.
The results are stunning. Combine red, orange and yellow filaments and watch as the vase you print emerges looking like an exotic cocktail. The printers offer four dual 3D printing modes: single color, dual color, gradient color, and mix color 3D printing. This offers a huge range of print designs for such a low-cost dual extruder 3D printer.
As for specs, the A20M features a good 255 x 255 x 255 mm build volume, with the A10M only slightly smaller. The A20M also boasts a number of stability increases as it is better anchored down. Overall, it’s an accurate (up to 0.1mm layer resolution), fun, and inexpensive dual-color 3D printer, combining colors and filaments together through one nozzle.
2. BIBO 3D Printer (Touch Laser if bought with laser engraver)
- Dual extruder 3D printer cost: $599 — Available on Amazon worldwide here
- Build volume: 214 x 180 x 160
Where do we start with the eccentric BIBO printer? Well, most importantly it also performs another function. It can be used as a laser engraver! The engraver can permanently etch your favorite designs into wood as well as cut paper or felt materials — and 3D print!
You can buy the BIBO as a 3D printer kit or pre-assembled, as well as with or without the laser engraver. And just because it does perform another function, that doesn’t mean it can’t excel in both. In fact, it’s a very effective multi extruder 3D printer, sporting a minimum layer height of 0.05 mm and prints stably in its closed build chamber.
It’s a great printer, it’s bonkers, and it’s ambitious. Even the product images on Amazon show the character and personality behind the machine. We love it.
3. Flashforge Creator Pro 2 — Affordable IDEX 3D Printer
- Creator Pro 2 price: $649 — Available at Flashforge Official store here
- Build volume: 200 x 148 x 150 mm
The popular and beloved Flashforge Creator Pro began to show its age, having been released in 2016, so Flashforge followed it up with the much-improved Creator Pro 2.
It, like its predecessor, has dual extrusion — but a slightly smaller build volume on the X-axis. It retains the 100-micron minimum resolution, and a PTFE tube extruder for PLA, ABS, and Nylon 3D printing in the enclosed build chamber.
However, the main change that makes this such a steal, is undoubtedly the IDEX upgrade. As an IDEX 3D printer the nozzles mode independently, unlike the dependent, attached nozzles on the original Creator Pro, with various modes such as Mirror Mode for 3D printing multiple identical models at the same time — a big time saver, trust me.
Other quality of life improvements include a better touchscreen interface, and important nozzle upgrades that prevent the unused nozzle from oozing and creating a messy print bed or even cause errors. You won’t find a better-priced IDEX printer around.
And if size matters, go with the Creator 2 Max.
Professional Dual Extruder 3D Printers: $1,000+
4. BCN3D Sigma D25 — IDEX 3D printer
- Company based: Spain
- Price: $3,995 — Available on Dynamism Store here / Available on Matterhackers here / 3DPrima Europe here
- Build volume: 210 x 297 x 210 mm
Spanish 3D printer manufacturer BCN3D have made a name for themselves for reliable dual extruder 3D printers with a twist. Their printers, including their Sigma range and the Epsilon, all use BCN3D’s IDEX 3D printing technology (Independent Dual Extruder System) — a unique and key advantage.
IDEX 3D printing allows each extruder to move completely independently, not restricted to working on the same model at the same time as with other 3D printers. Two different parts can be created simultaneously, halving the time taken to create multiple small parts. The Sigma D25 also features high-quality E3D hot ends for good quality printing with many different materials, including tougher filaments, and the filament run-out sensor informs you when filament is low.
For those who need a 3D printer for rapid prototyping, the ability to print multiple parts simultaneously to test is a huge advantage. The BCN3D Sigma D25 uses 2.85mm filaments instead of the standard 1.75mm, so take note of this, but is compatible with any 2.85mm filament. You can use a variety of 3D printer nozzle sizes, ranging from 0.3mm to 1.0mm, and it also has a clear and easy-to-navigate touchscreen interface.
Interestingly, the Sigma D25 is also an open source 3D printer, with the printer’s firmware, process, software and other files available on the BCN3D GitHub. It works seamlessly with Cura 3D slicer, and is easy to set up and use from the get-go. It’s a great, reliable and effective dual extruder 3D printer overall. With 50-micron resolution, it’s a high quality and high resolution 3D printer for accurate rapid prototyping.
5. Ultimaker S3 — Very accurate dual extruder 3D printer
- Company based: Holland
- Ultimaker S3 price: $3,850 — Available on Dynamism Store here / Available on Matterhackers here
- Build volume: 230 x 190 x 200 mm
Ultimaker are another desktop 3D printing giant that create fused deposition modeling printers that have won many awards. Featuring a dual extruder and up to an incredible 20-micron accuracy, the Ultimaker S3 is a fantastic option for small businesses, makers, and prosumers alike.
For accurate multi-material 3D prints, there is none better than the Ultimaker S3. It’s heavily used to create accurate architectural models as prototypes for building developments, to create accurate industrial and engineering prototypes, and in many other industries. It won dozens of awards on release, and is still one of the best dual extruder 3D printers around.
With a print volume of 230 x 190 x 200 mm, the Ultimaker S3 is capable of meeting most printing needs. It also has a built-in camera so you can remotely monitor prints in progress.
Connectable via WiFi, Ethernet or USB drive, the Ultimaker S3 is designed to be simple to use. Though not cheap at $3,850, the Ultimaker 3 is accurate, fast, reliable, and simple to operate. This makes it overall one of the best dual extruder 3D printers on the market today.
6. Raise3D Pro2 / Pro2 Plus
- Price: $3,999 — Available on Amazon here / Available on Dynamism Store here / Available on Matterhackers here
- Build volume: 305 x 305 x 300 mm
Also featuring on our overall best 3D printer ranking, the Raise3D Pro2 range greatly impresses with its reliability, size and range of filaments you can print. Beyond standard PLA, ABS and PETG printing, the Pro2 and Pro2 Plus 3D print Nylon, Polycarbonate, carbon fiber filaments, ASA, and metal-filled filaments, on either of its two extruders.
- Its bigger brother, the Raise3D Pro2 Plus, is $5,999 — Available on Amazon here / Available on Dynamism here / 3DPrima Europe here
The Raise3D Pro2 also boasts a fantastic build volume, at 305 x 305 x 300 mm, easily enough for everyday and industrial printing needs. The printer is also very accurate, with a 0.01mm minimum layer height, and has a 7-inch touchscreen for easy printer operation. At just under $4,000, the Raise3D Pro2 is overall a fantastic dual extruder printer for the price tag.
7. Ultimaker S5
- Price: $5,995 — Available on Dynamism Store here / Available on Matterhackers here / 3DPrima Europe here
- Build volume: 330 x 240 x 300 mm
Ultimaker are rated highly, and for very good reason — the company can’t seem to put a foot wrong. Following the Ultimaker 3, the Ultimaker S5 is the upgraded, improved, and slightly more expensive dual extruder 3D printer to compete with the Makerbot Method.
A large format 3D printer boasting a large 330 x 250 x 300 mm build volume, and built for more scalable production, the Ultimaker S5 already has satisfied customers in Volkswagen, Decathlon, and many more. It features a very advanced print bed leveling system, better touch screen, and can be connected to your phone via the Ultimaker app that alerts you when your print as finished. The Ultimaker S5 is an undeniably great dual extruder 3D printer.
The Best Dual Extruder Upgrades
8. Mosaic Palette 2S / 2S Pro — Best Dual Extrusion Filament Splicers Upgrades
- Palette 2S Price: $599 — Available on Matterhackers here
- Palette 2S Pro Price: $799 — Available on Matterhackers here
If you’re looking to print multiple colors without a dual extruder, think also about going with a Palette. Rather than 3D printing two different colored filaments from separate extruders, the Palette 2S and 2S Pro splices up to four different colored filaments — or different materials — together during printing to create multi-colored or multi-material parts.
They work by putting your model through specially-designed software — CANVAS for the Palette — for assigning different colors to different areas of your model before printing. When that specific area is due to be printed, Palette’s software splices that colored filament to print exactly area in your chosen material or color.
- We also have a ranking of the best color 3D printers.
This makes the Palette perfect for architectural models for building projects, multi-colored tabletop models of your favorite designs or D&D models, and for businesses creating multi-colored prototypes. The standard Palette 2S includes all these features, with the Palette 2S Pro also able to splice 20% faster, and with an extended 2-year warranty and replacement parts.
The Palette is compatible with hundreds of 3D printers, including almost all the most popular options. For more info, you can check your printer’s compatibility here, and for deciding between the Palette 2S and 2S Pro: the 2S Pro cuts filament 20% faster, and comes with a longer warranty — so if that’s important to you, spend the extra on the 2S Pro.
9. Prusa Multi Material Upgrade 2S — Prusa Upgrade Kit
- Price: $299 — Available at Prusa Store here
Whereas for most 3D printers. you can upgrade with the Palette, Prusa printer owners instead have a similar Multi Material Upgrade kit, allowing you to print up to 5 different filaments simultaneously. Prusa printers are some of the best 3D printers under $1,000, with this upgrade transforming your Prusa into a multi-color or multi-material 3D printer.
The MMU2S is upgraded over the previous Multi Material Upgrade Kit 2.0, with key changes including a filament sensor, buffer, and much-improved calibration process overall.
The filament sensor goes above and beyond, not only checking whether the filament is present, but whether it has reached the Bondtech gears for printing. This makes for far more reliable extrusion and makes for easier calibration and filament reloading.
The filament buffer also saves hassle by keeping each of your filaments (especially if you’re using all 5!) from tangling together and getting muddled. Keeping each filament organized and compartmentalized also saves space on your 3D printer desk or table.
FAQs on dual extruder 3D printers
If you liked this article, you may also like: