Like other MecklerMedia events, there was a palpable excitement in the exhibitor’s hall at the Inside 3D Printing Conference and Expo Seoul.
Squeezing through the bustling crowd, I managed to make my way into HyVision’s booth where they were showcasing their Cubicon printer. While the Cubicon was new to many on the show floor, I was already familiar with it. Maki Ebihara, store manager at iMakr NY, a 3D printer retailer in New York’s LES, used a Cubicon to print out one of my projects before my trip to South Korea, so I already knew that it was a very capable machine. Still, there were a lot of details about the printer and HyVision’s plans for it that were unknown to me prior to speaking with their representatives at the show.
While the Cubicon is still relatively unknown outside of South Korea, it is growing a devoted following among customers in the UK and US, where it is being exclusive sold by iMakr for $2,699. According to iMakr NY’s assistant manager, Bryan Dinner, a very satisfied customer gushed, “The Cubicon is the Ferrari of 3D printers.”
HyVision was founded in 2003 and their main business is producing a compact camera module (CCM) that they sell to camera module and lens manufacturers in South Korea, Japan, and China. Their CCM is used in many smartphones–including the iPhone.
With their Cubicon division, HyVision aims to bring their exacting quality standards to the 3D printing market. Fittingly, their first printer offering is not a hobbyist’s or tinker’s machine. Officially designated the Cubicon Single (due to its single extruder) Model No. 3DP-110, it’s a well thought out, plug-and-play professional grade printer. It boasts some truly standout features.
While the printer has a rather large build volume of 240 (W) x 190 (D) x 200 mm (H), its footprint is an imposing 544 (W) x 579 (D) x 524 mm (H), but there’s a lot of tech lurking underneath that black unibody skin. It has a durable, anti-vibration aluminum frame.
Not only does it have a heated build plate and chamber, it uses convection to regulate temperature within the build chamber. The printer has an ‘Auto Leveling Plus Function’ that doesn’t require bed calibration, and it does this auto-leveling procedure before every print. This is a fully mechanical auto-leveling system and one of their patented technologies.
There’s even a bubble level on the top of the case to help make sure the printer is sitting on a level surface. The print bed features a proprietary coating; no glue stick or painter’s tape required. This helps reduce user costs and saves time. Prints can easily be removed by hand as the bed cools. The Cubicon also employs a 3-way filtration system that consists of a removable HEPA, carbon and purafil catalyst filter to remove harsh smells or potentially toxic fumes from the build chamber.
Cubicon also self-designed their replaceable extruder. The hot end simply detaches from the extruder housing. The extruder can print in ABS and PLA with the current extruder design.
Through their partnership with eSun, HyVision carries their own line of ABS and PLA filament. Through an as yet unnamed South Korean brand they will soon be selling flexible filament, which I assume is some formulation of TPU. They plan on releasing a new extruder that is specifically designed for printing in flexible filament, something I think a lot of other 3D printer companies should seriously consider doing.
It would seem that HyVision has already perfected printing in flexible filament. At the show, they printed me a small cat figurine. It’s one of the cleanest flexible filament prints I’ve seen and the consistency and properties of the material seem very similar to NinjaFlex.
According to Lisa Choi, a member of the New Products Sales Team at HyVision System, they are planning to sell the Cubicon in Australia, the Netherlands, and Germany, as well as in Singapore for distribution throughout East Asia. They will be showcasing the printer next in Shanghai from July 7th – 9th.
In August, HyVision will be launching a smaller Cubicon-style FDM printer with a 150 x 150 x 150 mm build volume for the education market, priced at $1,700. They will also be introducing a DLP resin printer at the end of August, that is as yet unnamed and tentatively priced at $5,000.
By the end of 2015 they plan on launching a structured light scanner, tentatively priced at $4,500. This fits into their stated vision of being the total solution for 3D printing. If the Cubicon is any indication of the quality of their upcoming products, other desktop printer manufacturers better take note. There’s a new kid in town.
Let us know what you think about the Cubicon in the Inside 3D Printing Conference forum thread over at 3DPB.com. Below are more photos of the Cubicon.
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