3D printer start-up XYZprinting, which has built a reputation around affordable consumer-grade machines, announced today two new models, including an entry-level product priced at just $349.
The other new 3D printer is the company's first stereolithography (STL) product, the Nobel 1.0 3D printer. STL printers use a laser to sketch out a printed object's form in a photosensitive resin. With each pass of the laser, an additional layer of an object is hardened.
The new Nobel 1.0 3D printer's resolution is finer than anything available on a more typical 3D printer that uses fused filament fabrication (FFF). FFF is a process in which thermoplastic filament is extruded through a nozzle layer upon layer in order to build an object.
The Nobel has a resolution of 0.3mm (300 Microns) on the X/Y axis, and 0.025mm (25 microns) on the Z (or vertical) axis. To give you some idea of how thin that is, a human hair typically ranges from 20 to 25 microns in thickness.
Typically, the vertical axis of FFF 3D printers is between 70 and 100 microns.
XYZprinting's first 3D printer, the da Vinci 1.0 desktop FFF printer, has a resolution of 100 microns on the Z axis. 3D Systems, the first 3D printer maker, offers a resolution of 70 microns on its $2,800 CubePro machine .
The Nobel 1.0 3D printer will be available in the third quarter with a retail price of $1,500.
The Nobel 1.0 printer also has an automated resin refill feature, which checks resin levels automatically and theoretically eliminates the need to add liquid resin constantly throughout the printing process.
The printer is 11 in. x 13 in. x 23.8 in. in size and can create objects as large as 5 in. x 5 in. x 7.9 in. in size.
XYZprinting's cheapest 3D printer
XYZprinting's newest and most affordable FFF consumer grade 3D printer, the da Vinci Junior, will be priced at $349 and is expected to be available in May.
The compact da Vinci Junior is aimed squarely at consumers, educators and hobbyists, the company said. The machine is 16.5 in. x 15 in. x 16.9 in. in size and can create objects as large as 5.9 in. x 5.9 in. x 5.9 in. in size.
The da Vinci Junior, a follow-on to XYZprinting's original da Vinci 1.0 machine, connects to a desktop computer via a USB 2.0 cable, but it also comes with a built-in SD card slot that allows users to print directly from an external memory, with no computer-attachment required. This stand-alone feature is ideal for shared 3D printers in schools or offices, XYZprinting stated.
Like all of XYZprinting's machines, the da Vinci Junior has a fully enclosed printing area, which helps to reduce noise and smell. Unlike other models, however, the print platform is unheated.
The da Vinci Junior will be able to use PLA thermopolymer filament in a refillable spool. PLA and ABS are the two most popular 3D printing filaments in the marketplace.