The people at Printrbot recently announced a new low cost printer. It's called the Printrbot Play. It's targeted at $399 but if history is any indication, that price will rise as all Printrbot 3D printers do. This is an interesting entry though because the sub $500 3D printer seemed like the low point. Now sub $400 seems to be the new line. The new Da Vinci Jr. at $349 seems to be the new low point for a fully assembled ready to user 3D printer.
The Play is all metal construction but a rather small build area at 100x100x130mm. The Da Vinci Jr at 150x150x150mm is larger. The Play has an aluminum print bed so it doesn't appear to offer a heated bed so I'm not sure if it will only print PLA like the Printrbot Simple, there other low cost metal 3D printer. The Da Vinci Jr. will print PLA only. The Play looks to maintain an open source software control while the Da Vinci Jr. is closed source.
It's clear that 3D Printers are getting both better and cheaper. And kits seem to be fading away with more companies offering fully assembled printers. I like the direction things are going. This gets us closer to a 3D printer in every house. Then the fun can really begin.
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Chuck has been programming with PIC Microcontrollers since there were only five devices. Now there are over 700 and growing. He also has a lot of fun 3D printing designs using his Davinci 3D printer and TinkerCad software. In this series of blog posts and occasional videos on his YouTube Channel he tries to help you get started with electronics and 3D printing.
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