Several months ago we had an all out price war between several companies which launched on Kickstarter trying to become the world’s cheapest 3D printer on the market. While many of these companies, like New Matter are working diligently to meet their budgets and follow through with promises made to their backers, many also failed before they ever got started. Since that time, the race to the bottom (in terms of price) slowed down, and quality, as well as innovative features became the selling points of new printers entering the market.
All of the machines we are talking about used the cheaper, less accurate fused filament fabrication technology. That’s because the superior technology of stereolithography (SLA), which uses UV light to cure a photosensitive resin, can be an entire order of magnitude more expensive. That’s until today…
This afternoon a company based out of Melbourne, Florida, called iBox Printers may have just ignited an all out war within the desktop 3D printing space. They’ve just launched a Kickstarter crowdfunding campaign for their iBox Nano 3D printer. Touted as the world’s smallest and most affordable resin-based 3D printer to ever hit the market, the printer is being made available to early bird backers for just $189.00, in their drive to raise $300,000 for full scale production.
The machine which has a laundry list of minimalistic features including size, weight, energy consumption, and most importantly price, measures just 4 x 3 x 8″, and is only 3 pounds.
As the world’s first LCD based UV resin printer, the iBox Nano is able to fabricate objects quietly, with the option to plug it in, or use it’s 10 hour capacity battery for portable 3D printing. Any device with a web browser will be able to send data to the Nano and have it fabricated. This means that if you are in the other room with your iPhone, iPad, Android device or laptop you can initiate a print, without any requirement to download complicated software. Below you will find some of the key specifications of this new machine:
- Printer Technology: Stereolithography (LCD)
- Build Envelope: 40 x 20 x 90mm
- Resolution X-Y: 328 Microns
- Print Material: iBox Resin or Makerjuice
- Power Consumption During Print: 2.7 Watts
- Maximum Z Precision: 0.39 Microns
- Print Volume: 29 db
This printer is not for someone looking to 3D print large objects, as you can tell from the build envelope listed above. The main goal of iBox Printers in the development of this machine was to create a portable, affordable, quiet, and small machine, capable of being used anywhere in the home, or even on the go. The iBox Nano will retail for $299 once launched. The first 100 backers of their Kickstarter campaign will lock in a price of just $189, while the next 500 and 1,000 backers can pre-order this machine for $229 and $269 respectively. The company expects to ship their first units as early as January f next year, with the first mass production run beginning in March.
Let us know if you intend to, or already have backed this project. Discuss in the iBox Nano forum thread on 3DPB.com. Check out the Kickstarter pitch video provide below.