May approaches, bringing a new season and a sigh of relief as some of us dig our way out of the snow, and others begin to dip their toes back into the pool and the sea. All along though, even through the rain, snow, sleet, and some sun, the making community has still been as busy as usual–and then some.
The trend we see from 3D Hubs this month for desktop 3D printers is appropriate for spring with the ‘return to glory’ for many—in a report that shows no new 3D printers in the top 20—only some switching it up and trading spots. The Form1+ corrected itself and rose right back to #1 this month, with over 400 reviews and a claim to fame also as the most popular resin printer.
- Lulzbot’s Taz jumped from #14 into the top 5.
- The FlashForge Creator rose from 15th to 8th.
While industrial 3D printers showed no changes last month, for May there has been a bit of a shift, with the Objet Pro 30 ascending two spots to claim #6. This category also welcomes a new industrial printer from Stratasys, the uPrint, an entry-level FDM printer, coming in at #10.
3D Hubs also announces accessibility to full-color sandstone prints as they offer full-color support and integration with Sketchfab. Users are able to look forward to thousands of 3D printable models.
Trending printers show a new printer out of China taking the top spot with the CTC-3D which launched itself 12 spots up the chart, demonstrating growth at 72%. 3D Systems gets their 3rd generation Cube 3D in at #2, with bq’s Prusa i3 Hephestos taking third. This category shows the 3D printers experiencing enormous growth, and all of these grew by at least 50% MoM. The CEl Robox and Craftbot, both crowdfunding graduates, are newcomers on the list.
We always like checking out the Top 3D Printing Cities, as it’s fun to imagine everyone bustling, busy being creative and productive around the world. New York—number one still—is keeping a tight hold on their spot, as are Milan and Los Angeles, with all three top cities also increasing their number of 3D printers on 3D Hubs. It’s also a thrill to see Boston launch itself into the top ten, taking a spot at #9. With all the activity taking place in the US and abroad, you should be interested to check out upcoming workshops, as well as checking for meetups.
RepRap beat out everyone else for printer manufacturer distribution and, interestingly, 3D Hubs made a note that from now on they will be listing MakerBot and Stratasys as separate entities. This surely puts MakerBot far ahead of its parent company, second only to RapRap, as Ultimaker takes spot three.
Checking out printers by region–another area of interest as we get to see what everyone is doing, and where–there wasn’t a lot of change this month. The Form 1+, though, ascended to the fourth spot for North America and knocked out the Ultimaker 2, although as pretty good consolation, it shows impressive growth in Asia Pacific.
In terms of who is printing more in what category, art and design ascended further, coming in only second to prototyping and scale models—both of which showed an increase themselves, along with the gadget category. And perhaps surprisingly, black and white prints in 3D printing picked up this month, with a blue a runner-up, predictably.
As up and coming 3D printers are featured in crowdfunding campaigns, and well-established companies like Stratasys have new products on the market, it’s certainly fascinating to see who strides ahead in the race and who falls back, sometimes fluctuating a little—or a lot—each month.
Did you find some surprises in this month’s trends? Discuss in the May 3D Hubs Trend Report forum thread over at 3DPB.com.