back to article Gartner forecasts pro 3D printer prices below $2,000 by 2016

Analyst house Gartner has caught the 3D printing bug with its latest forecast on the future of the industry, and predicts enterprise-quality printers being cheap and plentiful by 2016. "3D printing is a technology accelerating to mainstream adoption," said Pete Basiliere, research director at Gartner. "The hype leads many people …

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Irk
Pint

"Print My Ride"

A pint for the author for that one. Happy Friday.

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Silver badge

Size limitations??!!

These things are pretty nice, but they do have limitations. Mostly in the material, and the size of the object.

Soon there will be a 'standard' file format (like PDFs) that we can all pass around to make cool things. As for 2nd amendment issues, it might be similar to having a PDF of your local currency. The PDF itself is one thing, the output is quite another. I'll leave it to legislators to really put a stop to this nonsense somehow. Given their predilections they might very well ban them.

So, is making something like publishing it? Free speech and all that. Time will tell.

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Boffin

Re: Size limitations??!!

STL is pretty much the standard for 3d modeling nowadays, almost every program either uses it natively or can export it.

I don't think 3d printers will become a household item until there's a modeler that doesn't suck. Every year the sculpting software get a little better, and businesses are opening to scan in the real world. One, called Made To Measure, opened up down the street from my office a couple months ago. They've got some REALLY nice toys.

The consumables need to come down in price too. Photopolymer resins have made good resolution possible, but the stuff costs a fortune (200 bucks a liter), and I don't think there's one available that can be burned out for metal casting yet. Lots of work still to do before it becomes more than novelty tech.

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Meh

Why Mobile Service?

There are plenty of CNC shops that will use your model and can produce a far higher quality out if metal (or plastic or wood) and these places can't really survive on walk in business. What makes Gartner think a mobile service that offers a lesser quality product than is already available will work?

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Boffin

CNC is traditional subtractive manufacturing, and can't do everything that 3d printing can, and it is not what you'd call cheap (except when compared to hiring a machinist to make stuff by hand). Don't get me wrong, CNC mills are great, it's even something I could see myself doing as a "second act" career, but it's not really in competition with 3d printing.

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Anonymous Coward

Once again, gartner 6 months behind for the management-by-in-flight-magazine crowd

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