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HP Plans 3D Printers Before End of 2010

Gordon Kelly


HP Plans 3D Printers Before End of 2010

It isn't often I get excited at the prospect of writing a story about printers, but here's a welcome exception...

Hewlett Packard has announced it will be releasing its first 3D printers during 2010 and they will be affordable (on the enterprise scale of things). HP will be using specialist Stratasys to produce its models, though it hasn't gone public on specific details at this point.

"There are millions of 3-D designers using 2-D printers," said HP large format printing business VP Santiago Morera. "Stratasys’ technology is the ideal platform for HP to enter the market and begin to capitalize on this untapped opportunity."

Prices are likely to be under $15,000 (£9,000) - a tad unthinkable just a few years ago - and will be largely used in conjunction with CAD to create three dimensional plastic prototypes ahead of final, full scale designs. So no, we're not quite talking print your own remote control car just yet.

Mainstream usage? Still a number of years away, but I bet the adult industry can't wait...


via Wired


January 22, 2010, 5:33 am

I've been using 3D printers for almost two decades now, it's a cheap bureau service and most people will be able to make you something overnight and ship it to your home or work. Just put stereolithography or selective laser sintering into a search engine and wait for the results to come pouring in. Even the high end professional stuff requires a skilled operator to produce the initial model and then manually clean it up enough to make it useful.

Most of these processes don't give you a part strong enough or precise enough to use in a real world application anyway, in my line of work we use these processes to create parts quickly for assesment before we get them machined in a proper material or make injection mould tools. And as for the adult industry... I seriously doubt that any of the materials that this machine works with would pass USP Class 6 protocols for implantation so don't go sticking anything where nature didn't intend.

Tony Walker

January 22, 2010, 10:39 am


If we take the TV as a comparison, you've been using Baird's scanning system and this could maybe equate to early electronic scanned telly. Don't write it off so quickly as there will be numerous (several of them probably unimaginable) improvements in the years to come, particularly in the areas of what compounds will be used as the "ink".

Medically safe (ahem!) products in about 2025 folks?


January 22, 2010, 2:10 pm

I agree with vivid, as a designer I could get next day delivery of a Sterolithography model in 1995. By 2000 I had a Z-Corp 3D Printer in my office (there were ABS plastic based office printers around then too) and I could have a design 'printed' within a few hours. The prices have come down, but so have the cost of 3d workstations and CAD packages. Hopefully a recognised brand behind the technology will boost the market and speed up the development of the technology.


January 22, 2010, 3:00 pm

Pirate 3d models of real stuff anyone? I can see it now - "{L33T}Rampant_Rabbit_v2_FULL-cRacKed.torrent".



January 22, 2010, 4:06 pm

Are HP a bit late to the game ->

http://www.dimensionprintin... not much more than £9K.


January 22, 2010, 4:59 pm

Talk about 2010 being the year of 3D!


January 22, 2010, 5:44 pm

Nothing new really... the open source 'Reprap' project has been going for some time. The best thing is, if you know someone who's already got one, you can ask them to 'print off' the parts you need to build your own!



January 23, 2010, 3:49 pm

If this was anyone but HP, I'd be pleased...

The printers might well be futuristic, but with HP you can guarantee acres of cheap creaky plastic coupled with a slurry of unwanted performance-sapping bloatware and buggy printer drivers that will essentially render the actual hardware useless.


January 25, 2010, 2:32 pm

@SRS: If this was anyone but HP, I'd be pleased...

To be honest I find them the best.. I've had Cannon, Epson, Lexmark, etc etc. And I used to get fed up of having to do Head cleaning and stuff if I didn't use the printer for 3 freeking days. With HP I can leave the printer for months, and the first print always comes out 100%.

They might be a bit plasticky, but we still have a HP Laserjet III at work that's used every day and that still running, so that plastic certainly doesn't effect performance.

Also HP drivers used to be bloatware, but now you can always get the driver only version. So I wound't say there driver is any more bloatware than the others. Slightly OT, talking of bloatware that Macromedia Flash has to take first place.

Dwane Hinson

March 17, 2010, 5:48 pm

HP has a systemic software problem with Windows 7 and Norton, and other firewalls. Be careful before purchasing high dollar printers before these problems are resolved.

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