CNC routers are generally used to make cutting or engravings on soft materials such as plastics, glass, foams, woods, acrylics. With the increasing demand for home and industrial creativities, there exist many brands of CNC routers.
There are professional CNC routers or industrial CNC routers that are best for small and large businesses and DIY CNC router kits used by hobbyists.
Hobby CNC routers are always used by beginners or starters of CNC machines or students who are just starting to learn the art of engraving and cutting designs. CNC routers can be expensive, but some are very affordable.
Budget-friendly CNC routers don’t have to be cheap in quality. To get the best value for your money as a beginner in CNC routers, you must get the best CNC routers under 1000.
In this review, we have discussed the factors you should look out for in the CNC routers. This CNC router review will guide you through the carefully selected best CNC routers in 2021. From experience with several routers, we have made a list of the top best CNC router under 1000
All at a Glance
Unique Details: Manufacturer: FoxAlien, Part Number: 4040-XE, Item Weight: 57.6 Pounds, Package Dimensions: 33.46 x 27.95 x 10.24 inches, Color: Black, Power Source: AC/Dc, Voltage: 11 Cots, Installation Method: Screw-In, Plug Format: B-use Style with ground plug
Active Working Area: 15.75 x 15.75 x 2.16 inch (400 x 400 x 55mm)
Spindle Power: 300W
Stepper Motor: NEMA 23
Max Moving Speed: 2000mm/min
Input Power Supply: 110V/10A
Control Method: Computer/Controller offline control
Firmware: GBRL 1.1h
Support Software: Compatible with GBRL-control software
Support OS: Windows XP/7/8/10, Linux, Mac OS
Machine Size: 29.92 x 24.4 x 14.17 inch (760 x 620 x 360mm)
Support Add-ons: 5W/15W/20W Power module; DWP611 router need a different Z clamp)
Included Component: 1/8 Inch Collet
If you are just getting a CNC machine this year, you should be looking at getting the best CNC router under $1000 for beginners. That is why we have chosen this CNC Router Machine from FoxAlien as one of the best CNC routers machines in 2021.
This fantastic machine is designed with great features for both a home CNC machine and a professional CNC router. Having used this CNC router machine, we can talk with confidence about its main features and why you should consider purchasing it as a DIY CNC router.
This 4040-XE CNC router machine uses a 300W spindle and NEMA23 steppers motors which means it functions more powerful and efficient. However, you can switch the spindle to 15W power module max, but the power module is not included.
Also, this CNC router machine features a large active working area so that it can handle both large and small materials in your workshop. Hence it is among the best CNC machines for small businesses and large businesses.
Likewise, this home CNC router machine from FoxAlien has a safe, integrated controller board where the power supply, control board, wire are fully integrated. It was designed this way to ensure safety and easy access for cleaning.
Another feature of this hobby CNC route is the aviation plugs which are safe and easy for maintenance. Also, the cable of this CNC router machine is well managed such that the wires are neatly bundled into a drag chain for easy management.
Besides, assembling this entry-level CNC router machine is relatively easy as it takes only four significant steps, including:
Step 1: Installing the wasteboard and dust baffles
Step 2: Installing the gantry
Step 3: Installing the Z-axis and spindle
Step 4: Wiring.
Some tips in using this CNC router for woodworking:
- Select the control mode before using the Computer or Controller.
- Power on the machine first, then click “Unlock,” and then start to move and engrave.
- This CNC router machine can be used for engraving, drilling, and cutting different materials including, MDF, PCB wood, metals, acrylic, nylon craving, cutting arts, and some other DIY projects.
- This CNC router machine from FoxAlien is easy to assemble
- The spindle is switchable to 15W power module max
- It is very accurate and precise
- It is designed for beginners
- This CNC router has a large active working area
- The control board is safe and easy to clean
- It is easy to use
- It is easy to install
- It may not be ideal for challenging projects
Special Details: Manufacturer: FoxAlien, Part Number: FAC3, Item Weight: 26 Pounds, Package Dimension: 19.5 x 17.85 x 11.5 inches, Color: Dark Grey, Voltage: 12 Volts
Machine size: 452 x 385 x 316mm/ 17.8″ x 15.16″ x 12.44″
Active Working Area: 278 x 157 x 33mm/ 11″x 6.18′ 1.3
Spindle rated Power: 775 Spindle 60W: 10000RPM
Step Motor: NEMA17
Power Supply: 12V 5A
Supported Software: Compatible with all GBRL software
Supported Os: windows XP/7/8/10, Linux, MAC OS( some Mac OS versions may not be compatible)
1x 3018-SE CNC Router Machine (half-assembled)
1 x Transparent Enclosure
1x Z Probe
1 x Cooling Fan
4 x Hold-down Clamp
1x Power Supply
1 x USB Cable
1X U Disk
1x User Manual
We have chosen this desktop CNC router machine 3018-SE V2 as among the best CNC router under $1000 for sign making and engraving.
This desktop CNC router machine 3018-SE V2 from FoxAlien is an entry-level CNC router for beginners and hobbyists. It is designed with enclosures made of transparent acrylic sheets that enable the user to view the engraving process from all sides for beginners and hobbyists.
It features a dust-proof case to keep the spindle and dust while engraving. This keeps you safe and your work environment neat.
Furthermore, it features a spindle mount that can fit both FoxAlien 5W and 20W modules and can be upgraded to a 300W spindle directly. This spindle clamp has also been upgraded to accommodate spindles with 42mm and 52mm diameter.
Over and above that, this CNC router machine has a wide range of applications. It can engrave and cut varieties of materials such as wood, resin, metal, plastic, acrylics. You can use it to carve soft metals such as aluminum, copper, and silver. It can also be used to make letters and signs and 3D relief sculptures.
Hence it is one of the best CNC router laser engravers and the best CNC router sign making. This CNC router kit is excellent for home DIY and small business.
In addition, the control board of this router machine has open-source GBRL software, and it supports Windows XP/7/8/10, Linux, macOS. It is also easy to use.
Lastly, assembling this CNC router kit is easy. The main parts of this CNC router are pre-installed in the factory, while others are labeled clearly to enhance fast assembly. Also, an instruction manual is included as a guide through the process of assembling. Following this simple process below simply gets the job done:
- Assemble base and gentry
- Install the control board
- Assemble the enclosure
- This CNC router under $1000 is excellent for starter
- It is easy to assemble
- This CNC router machine is safe to use
- It features a dustproof case
- It features an optimized labeled assembly method
- It is easy to use
- This CNC router machine has a wide application
- This CNC router under $1000 is the best for the money
- The customer support is great
- Some of the hardware may be missing
Special Details: Manufacturer: Titoe, Product Dimension: 17.8 x 9.6 x 7 inches, Item Weight: 15.52 pounds
Effective Engraving Area: 30 x 18 x 4.5cm
Material: Aluminum +PF +ABS
Spindle: 775 motor, 24 V, 1000rpm
Supported Software: GBRL support G-code, NC, TXT, TAP/ Module GBRL Support G-code ad Picture
Supported Os: Windows XP/7/8/10
Rated Current: 1.5A
3000mW 3W Module: Power: 3W, Output Current: 3A, Input Voltage: DC 12V, Working Temperature: 10°-40°
Upgrade Version 2 in 1 3000mW Engraver CNC 3018 Pro GBRL Control DIY Mini CNC Machine is an excellent mix between quality and affordability. This Update 3018PRO 2-in-1 with 3000mW Module hobby CNC router is an upgraded version of 80% of 3018.
The body is made of aluminum, so this CNC router is durable. With this best CNC router laser engraver, you can get the best from this CNC router for under $1000.
Although this mini CNC router machine from Title manufacturers is designed for absolute beginners and is a great introduction to CNC machines, it is also a professional CNC router. An experienced CNC engraving enthusiast looking for an upgrade can add the 5500mw module kit to the machine to enhance creativity.
It is also a great CNC router for woodworking, as you can use it to add features like curved words and exquisite patterns.
Upgrade Version 2 in 1 engraver CNC machine has many advantages compared to other mini CNC routers.
This CNC machine under $1000 can serve as both a CNC router and as an engraver. The 2 in 1 design permits users to replace the spindle of this DIY CNC router kit with a preferred powerhead.
Besides, this CNC machine under 1000 has high precision with focus ˂0.1mm. It is also one of the best CNC router laser engravers as it has high engraving power and can directly import pictures to laser GBRL for engraving.
Also, users can control this mini CNC router offline without any computer with the offline controller feature. Among its fantastic quality is the upgraded control board that includes an integrated driver chip, an external fan, fixed heat sink, all enclosed in a study case to increase the service life of the control board. The self-contained short circuit protection helps to prevent burning from overload.
Although this CNC router machine under $1000 is suitable for carving wood, PCB, CCL, acrylics, and plastics, You cannot use it to care more complex materials like necklaces and metals. The software is built on open-source, Arduino, and GBRL software supported by this router is G-file.
- It is easy to assemble
- It is of high quality
- This CNC router is under $1000; hence is it very affordable
- It has a high speed and performance
- This control board of this CNC router machine is upgraded
- It has a wide usage
- The manufacturer provides adequate tech support
- It has a sturdy frame that makes the machine more stable
- It features an offline controller
- It is a great CNC router for starters
- Some parts may be missing.
- The router laser may not be engraving the entire image
Special Details: Manufacturer: MYSWEETY, Part Number: 20349588, Item weight: 15.74 pounds, Package Dimensions: 17.53 x 9.85 x 7.17 inches, Size: Large, Material: ABS
Effective Engraving Area:300 x 180 x 45mm (11.8 x 7.1 x 1.8″)
Frame Size: 400 x 330 x 240mm(15.7 x 13.0 x 9.4″)
Frame Material: Aluminum +PF
Z-Axis Component Material: ABS
Spindle: 775 motor, 12V, 24V, 10000r/ min
Software: GRBL Control Systems
Rated Power: 60W
Maximum Power: 120W
Step Motor: Fuselage Length 34MM, Current 1.33A, 12v. Torque 0.25N/M
Drill Bits: Tip 0.1mm, 20 degrees, diameter 3.175mm
Support System: Windows XP, Windows 7 32/64 bits, windows 8, Windows 10
1pcs DIY Router Kit
1pcs offline Controller
10pcs 5mm acrylic baffles
1pcs extension rod with ER11 collet
MY SWEET CNC 3018PRO-M is an excellent hobby CNC router for beginners and professionals. You can use it to add features such as beautiful patterns and curved texts. This CNC engraving machine kit features are great for engraving the model you desire to code and design.
First, the 5 acrylic baffles on each side of this CNC router kit so users can safely monitor the engraving process. If you are also looking for a CNC machine for curving on daily materials quickly, this best CNC is what you should purchase.
This 3018 PRO engraving machine from MY SWEET has 2 control methods: a manual and a computer control compared to the 3018, which has only one control method and has to be connected to a computer.
It features an offline controller with a 1G capacity, so you can use the router without connecting it to a computer.
Also, MY SWEET CNC 3018Pro-M Engraver Machine Kit has a more stable base compared to 3018 with poor stability.
The control board is sturdy and is not easily damaged. It features a sturdy casing that helps to extend the life of the control board.
Over and above that, this CNC machine is affordable as it is among the best CNC router under 1000. This CNC route is very versatile. It can work on wood, leather, bamboo, paper, plastic, PCB, acrylic, metal surface paint, metal surface plating.
However, it cannot work on hard metal, glass, iron, jewelry, and 201/304 stainless steel. While using this metal, it is recommended to engrave 0.1-0.3mm each time.
- It is simple to set up
- This CNC router machine is easy to assemble
- It features an upgraded control board
- The base of this CNC router kit is stable.
- It is ideal for beginners
- It is sturdy
- You get the best value for your money.
- It is accurate
- It has a good customer support
- It cannot work on hard metals, iron, glass, jewelry, or silver.
Special Details: Manufacturer: Vevor, part Number: CNC 3018-PRO, Item weight: 14.9 pounds, Product Dimension: 17.7x 10.2 x 7.1 inches, Size” Basic, Material: Aluminum and Bakelite material, Power Source 318-Pro no laser
Effective Carving area: 300(X) x 180(Y) x 40(Z)mm/ (11.8″ x 7.1″ x 1.57″)
Spindle: 775 Spindle Motor 24V
Driving Units: T8 Stainless Steel Screws
Spindle Speed: 10000r/min.
Stepping Motor: Current: 1.33A, 12V; Torque 0.25N/M
Power: 24V 5A
Control Software: GBRL Control
Drills: 10 free drills
Offline Screen:1.8 inch offline screen
1 x 3018 PRO DIY Router Kit
1 x Extension Rod with ER 11 Collet (3.175mm)
4 x Plate Clamps
10 x CNC Router Bits (Cutting Angle: 30 degree; Shank Diameter: 3.175mm; Tip Diameter: 0.1mm)
1 x Offline Controller
1 x Power Supply
1 x USB Drive
1 x USB Cable
VEVOR CNC 3018-PRO 3 Axis CNC Router Kit is another CNC router under 1000. It is an upgraded version of 3018 CNC. This CNC router kit is made of durable as it is made of aluminum and bakelite material. This updated 3018 Pro CNC for wood and metal with its high precision.
It also features 3 refined axis that can realize plane engraving, with an effective working area of 300(X) x180(Y) x40(Z) mm (11.8″x7.1″x1.57″). The driving units consist of T8 stainless steel screw rods.
Furthermore, this CNC router machine can be connected through a USB interface with an output of 2P/3P. It supports PMW, TTL functions which can achieve greater practicality. In addition, this CNC router price is very affordable.
Moreover, it features a multifunctional offline controller that is configured to control the engraving machine remotely; hence this CNC router kit does not need to be connected to a computer. It also does not download files, and the X, Y, and Z-axis positions can be adjusted manually starting from the engraving point. You can also turn the spindle on and off manually.
The three 42 stepper motors include on each of the three axes for smooth movement is very efficient. The spindle motor of 775 24V on the Z-axis has the capacity of reaching 1000r/min. This mini CNC router has a wide application. A laser cutter and an engraving machine can engrave or mill all types of plastics, soft aluminum, wood, acrylic, PVCs, and other soft materials.
VEVOR CNC 3018-PRO 3 Axis CNC Router Kit also features a GBRL control board. When using this CNC router machine, it is recommended not to use the laser head continuously for a long time. Pausing it every half hour is the way to go.
- It is easy to assemble
- This CNC router machine under $1000 is made of durable materials
- It has high precision
- It features 3 refined axis
- The control is convenient
- It is a high-performance machine
- This CNC machine is budget-friendly
- It features an offline controller
- The stepper motors are very efficient.
- It is designed for beginners
- It is accurate
- Some products may come with either of the axes not working
Factors to Consider when Choosing the Best CNC Router under $1000
Depending on your needs, several factors to consider when choosing the best CNC router under 1000. This CNC routers buyer’s guide will help you select the best CNC router under 1000.
Size: this depends on your workshop space. There are different sizes of CNC routers ranging from a mini CNC router such as a desktop CNC router to a large-sized CNC router.
A desktop mini router kit can be placed on a benchtop or a desk, as its name implies. The large-sized CNC routers are the industrial CNC router brands. They take up more space and are usually very versatile.
Software Capabilities: In choosing the best CNV router under 1000, you must choose the CNC router compatible with your computer’s window. Some CBC routers work with Windows, Linux, and macOS.
Spindle: The spindle cuts the material, and it is measured in revolutions per minute. This is also important in choosing the best CNC router under 10000.
Availability of spare parts: Like every other machine, CNC router machines, when damaged, may need a replacement. For this reason, when choosing the best CNC router, ensure you choose a CNC router whose parts are readily available in the market.
Motor: The motor determines the cutting speed of a CMC router machine. Although CNC router machines are designed to cut soft materials, be sure to choose a CNC router with a high motor rating as they work faster and better than lower motor ratings.
Offline controller: An offline controller enables you to operate your CNC router machine without connecting it to a computer. With this factor in place, you can place your CNC router in a garage or your workshop while you work in another space.
Final Verdict – Best CNC Router Under $1000
The top best CNC router machine under 1000 in 2021 is the CNC Router Machine 4040-XE, 300W Spindle 3-Axis Engraving Milling machine for Wood metal Acrylic MDF Nylon Carving Cutting Arts and Crafts DIY Design. This DIY CNC router kit is an excellent balance between affordability and quality.
The primary purpose of routers is to cut softer materials; this CNC router kit works just fine in cutting MDF, PCB wood, metals, acrylic, nylon craving, cutting arts, and other soft materials.
However expensive, we recommend you buy this CNC router kit for its quality. The only con about this router is that it may not be ideal for challenging projects.
Our second choice is the Desktop CNC Router Machine 3018-SE V2 with transparent Enclosure. This CNC router machine is what you need if our workshop is not spacious.
The sturdy nature complements the quality. It is excellent for soft materials, but if you want to cut rigid materials like aluminum, you can always increase the rigidity and run a higher-powered spindle. The setup is also straightforward.
The only complaint users have given the screws that connect the motor to the spirals that come loose, but you can always tighten this.
Upgrade Version 2 In 1 3000mW Engraver CNC 3018 Pro GBRL Control DIY Mini CNC Machine is our third pick. This woodworking CNC router is excellent for beginners. The GBRL drivers, software, and use are straightforward. It also works nicely with laser. It is a fantastic machine for the money.
MY SWEET CNC 3018Pro-M Engraver Machine Kit, GBRL Control 3 Axis Mini DIY CNC Router Kit, Plastic Acrylic PCB PVC Wood Milling Engraving Machine with Offline Controller and ER11 and 5mm Extension Rod is the fourth-best CNC router under 1000.
As a CNC machine tool, it is lightweight. It is affordable, and the instructions are easy to follow. MY SWEET CNC router machine offers you good value for the money.
VEVOR CNC 3018-PRO 3 Axis CNC Router Kit GBRL Control with offline Controller Plastic Acrylic PCB PVC Wood Carving Milling Engraving Machine XYZ Working Area 300x180x45mm takes the fifth position. For most of its part, a budget-friendly machine is a high-quality material, sturdy, and it is a good starter for newbies.