TIG welding is one of the most respected skills among metal crafters.
Once called Heli-Arc for its helium shielding, TIG means Tungsten Inert Gas. The American Welding Society now calls it Tungsten Metal Arc Welding or TMAW.
Whatever you call it, TIG is a skill worth having.
But you need the right machine to do it properly and they’re not cheap.
Before you lay out the cash, you need to read about these six machines.
We did the homework and saved you the pain. Here are the best TIG welders for less than two grand.
In a Rush?
Here's 3 products we picked out that thought you would be interested in depending on your budget...
Best TIG Welders Under $2000
Here's a list of some of the best TIG welders you can buy for under $2000:
1. Miller Multimatic 215 TIG Welder - Top Pick
- 120 or 240 volt input power
- DC TIG, MIG or stick welding
- Two gas connections
- 3-year warranty
- Color LCD screen
- Includes gas regulator
- Comes with MIG gun and electrode clamp
- Auto spool gun detect
- Post flow for clean welds
- Smooth arc starting
- DC only machine
- No TIG torch included
The Miller Multimatic 215 is a professional multi-process DC TIG, flux core, MIG and stick welder. It’s got dual 120/240 volt input power and two gas connections, one for TIG and one for MIG.
Auto-Set Elite lets you get the right settings by entering material and thickness. When you’re done welding a pass, the machine will flash a “HOLD” message and show the actual volts and amps you were welding at for a few seconds, before reverting to the settings you saved.
As a DC-only welder, it’s not suitable for TIG welding aluminum, but you can weld aluminum using MIG with an optional spool gun for aluminum wire. The machine includes automatic detection when a spool gun is plugged in.
The Multimatic 215 has a post-flow feature that maintains a flow of shielding gas after you stop welding to allow the weld puddle to cool without contacting the atmosphere. This machine loads either 4-inch or 8-inch wire spools and is backed by a 3-year warranty.
2. Lincoln 200 TIG Welder
- Dual 120/240 volt power
- No-touch arc starts
- Does TIG and stick welding
- Up to 200 amps in TIG mode
- Includes a Victor regulator
- 20 pulses per second heat control
- 60 to 90 percent AC for TIG cleaning
- Comes with the foot controller
- Welds AC and DC
- 170 amp stick arc on 240
- Owners report issues with quality control
The Lincoln Square Wave 200 offers AC and DC TIG welding, doubling as a stick machine, too. Dual input power gives the versatility to plug in at home or on commercial 240 volt sites. The TIG 200 Square Wave offers a lot of power with 200 amp TIG on 240 power and a 170 amp stick arc.
High frequency arc starting keeps the tungsten electrode clean with no-touch starts. It welds from 24-gauge sheet to 3/16-inch plate.
For aluminum work, the AC TIG process features pulse width modulation to control bead width. Adjustable AC balance cleans surface oxidation and keeps impurities out of the weld puddle.
Some owners have reported early failures with this machine, but grade Lincoln highly for customer service. The TIG 200 Square Wave comes with Lincoln’s 3-year warranty.
This welder is designed with a settings interface that’s easy to use. Just choose material and thickness, the processor does the rest.
Lincoln includes a TIG torch, regulator, electrode clamp and 10-foot hose.
3. Mophorn TIG-165S
- TIG or arc stick welder
- Infinitely adjustable amperage knob
- TIG from 20 amps to 140 amps
- Stick welding 20 amps to 120 amps
- Dual voltage input 120/240
- Stick/gas welding switch
- 8-foot torch lead
- Only weighs 20 pounds
- Inverter powered
- Lift start arc
- Hand controller only, no foot pedal
We chose the TIG-165S as our budget pick because it offers huge power for its class. 165 amps is a lot of juice for a welder in this range. With both 120 and 240 input voltage to choose from, you can use it just about anywhere.
It’s got both stick and TIG modes and you don’t often see a 20 to 165 amp TIG operating range and an infinitely adjustable amp control that’s this affordable. Stick welding on 120 volt power will run up to 120 amps, enough to do some serious repair work around the house.
It’s too bad Mophorn chose not to make this machine foot controllable, because it’s already so inexpensive that buyers would probably pay the extra cost. As it is, there is a fingertip heat control. TIG welding takes a lot of attention to detail, so fingertip control might not be the best approach.
If you can live without a foot control, owners gave the Mophorn TIG-165S high marks for smooth welding and considered this machine an amazing value.
4. Hobart EZ-TIG 165i
- Easy setup: Just choose material thickness
- 10 to 165 amps
- Fan-On-Demand runs only when needed
- Gas postflow after arc stops, cleaner welds
- Comes with regulator and TIG torch
- No-touch arc starting
- Gas flow is based on amps
- Infinitely adjustable amps knob
- AC and DC TIG
- 22 gauge sheet to 3/16-inch plate
- This is a TIG-only machine
The Hobart’s EZ-TIG 165i is a professional AC/DC TIG welder setup. The only required user input is material selection and material thickness. The machine sets itself up automatically. This feature can be overridden for experienced users or special conditions. The 10 to 165 amp current range welds 22 gauge sheet metal to 3/16-inch plate.
This machine is ready to weld stainless, chrome moly, titanium, copper and aluminum as well as standard mild steel. It has no-touch high frequency arc starting to prevent electrode contamination by the work material. The EZ-TIG 165i is backed by Hobart with a 5-year warranty and it’s made in Appleton, Wisconsin.
The cooling fan only activates based on internal temperature, minimizing dust and debris build-up inside the housing. This professional machine only operates on 240 input power and includes a foot pedal, a Miller TIG torch and comes with a flowmeter-type gas regulator.
5. ESAB Rebel 215ic TIG-Welder
- Multiprocess TIG, MIG, flux and arc
- Includes the gas regulator
- Backed by a 3-year warranty
- Automatic settings system
- User manual is in the memory
- 120 and 240 input voltage
- Includes both a TIG torch and MIG gun
- Big display is easy to read
- Built for outdoor use
- Parts list on the display
- DC-only TIG machine
The Rebel 215 from ESAB comes with a large display that features color menus and high resolution. The memory on the display unit holds the user manual and a parts list. Although it only does DC TIG, it’s also capable of MIG, stick and flux core welding. It has a 2T/4T switch that functions as a torch trigger lock to prevent fatigue on long bead runs.
The Rebel 215 comes with four memories for each process and operates on either 120 volt or 240 volt input power. ESAB’s Rebel series welders are made for rugged outdoor use and they’re built to IPS23 standards. They include an automatic settings mode that only requires wire diameter and metal thickness to set itself up.
ESAB also included its Smart MIG technology that adapts to your welding by making small changes to the settings as you weld to improve the arc performance. The Rebel 215 comes with Tweco TIG torch and MIG gun, a Victor gas regulator and a stick electrode clamp. This machine has a 3-year warranty.
6. Forney 324 TIG 3-in-1
- DC TIG, MIG, flux core and stick
- 5-year warranty
- Easy arc start
- Quick process change with 3-way switch
- Case is built to industrial standards
- 100 percent duty cycle at 85 amps
- Includes gas regulator
- Lift-type arc starting
- Comes with a MIG torch
- Gas flow regulated by welding speed
- No TIG torch included
- DC welding only
The Forney 324 is a 190 amp DC TIG, MIG and stick welder. It has dual 120 and 240 volts input and outputs 190 amps. Built to industrial standards, it’s suitable for professional work.
Forney ships the 324 with a regulator, hose and MIG gun. It’s got a three-way switch to easily change welding processes. This machine is spool gun ready. Just plug it in and the machine handles the connections. Forney designed a solid aluminum wire feed drive mechanism with a gear drive system.
Unfortunately, this welder doesn’t come with a TIG torch or a foot pedal, but is ready for both when purchased separately. In our opinion, the price is low enough that Forney should include these items. Buyers would pay extra money for them and still come out ahead.
It’s a high quality welder and very powerful with a 100 percent duty cycle at 85 amps, 20 percent at full 190 amp power. Forney has been in business since the 1930s and backs the 324 machine with a 5-year warranty.
The Under-$2000 TIG Buying Guide
TIG machines cost more than other welders, because they offer a lot of adjustments. Heat control, oxidation cleaning and bead width are just a few adjustments not seen with other welding processes.
In this case, we started with a ceiling of $2000, which buys a lot of features and power. Many machines in the $1000 to $2000 range offer 120/240 volts input, AC balance and pulse width modulation. Most come with a TIG torch and heat control pedal. If you’re more interested in lower-priced welders, take a look at our Best TIG Welders Under $1000 buying guide
If you’re planning to TIG weld aluminum most of the time, you’ll need AC/DC capability. If you’re not worried about TIG welding aluminum, a DC machine with MIG capability can weld aluminum with a spool gun. For TIG on steel and stainless steel, DC will get the job done.
With a $2000 ceiling, you’re able to shop for advanced options.
- AC balance adjustment: Uses the percentage of AC cycle time spent in the positive cycle to blast oxidation off the surface. The negative cycle penetrates the metal, keeping impurities out of the weld puddle for a stronger, cleaner weld.
- Pulse width modulation: This allows you to set the frequency of current pulsing in hertz, or pulses per second to affect the bead width. You can turn the frequency lower for a narrow bead or crank it higher for a wider bead
- Waveform selection: Some machines allow you to choose a true sine wave AC cycle, square wave or a modified wave like a triangular sine waveform. These factors affect the welder’s ability to use generator power and the level of heat and penetration.
Our Judgement Call
Because our main criteria here is the Best TIG Welder under $2000, we selected the Miller Multimatic 215 for our Pro Choice because it’s a no-compromise professional machine with multiple hookups and highly-rated welding performance. If you need an AC/DC machine, we recommend you go with the Hobart EZ-TIG 165i.