Thanks to everyone for the comments and especially to Jeroen, who answered some of the remarks. Just a few things I'd like to clarify:
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- The evolution of digital technologies is so fast that designing a specific solution for a particular type of displays or phones is very problematic. The "modular design" allows to simply adapt the viewer to any new type of display by making a new back, without having to change the whole body. And, from the perspective of the user, without having to buy a new body. If you pointed me to a better type of displays than the ones I linked I can possibly make a housing for them. The same with smartphones.
- The modular design does not add much to the price of the printing. The price you refer to ($100 for the XZ Premium viewer) was simply unbearable with all the effort put in re-designing the viewer according to the response and demands I received. I designed and made the first viewers for my friends, out of pure enthusiasm.
Development of any product requires an enormous amount of work, test printing, buying and testing components and other expenses and as we all know, the prospective production volume is ridiculously low here.
The body is not just "plastic". There are metal gears and other parts and the assembly requires an amount of handwork that is not negligible.
Sorry to say this, I hope it is understandable.
- The printing time of the body is about 30 hours, around 50 for the whole viewer with all other parts. Jeroen's estimate of 10 was unfortunately too optimistic:-)
- I don't have any team and nothing that could be called a company (so far:-)
With best regards,
On 6/14/21 2:21 PM, Jeroen de Wijs wrote:
I want to coment on your note on that what Matej is doing which is possible within his production options. Matej is not running a large factory.
As small company I know how difficult it is to find solutions to produce viewers in low quantities and keep the costs down. Matej and his team just applies a very low profit on their production costs to keep things affordable.
Comparing his solution, actually a 3D printed version hand held version of a digital viewer I already made in 2018 for exhibits with the double 1440x1440 LCD's. Comparing the resolution of stand alone VR viewers running on Android is, I think, not fair as those cannot do what his (and mine) can do; connecting it to your computer or other sources with more reasonable lower magnification.
Those LCDs are now for about 3 years on the market and I know theire limits as well. it is currently the best resolution (and addressable) you can have with this concept; controller-LCD set. while others go higher with full HD or more for each eye is just because they position the processor (android) close to the LCD, and not feed the LCD through HDMI.
If there was a solution for what Matej did build, then the big companies already did.
If you want to make a enclosure of a viewer of plastic, and it will be a complicated one, you have to deal with mould costs of at least 20.000 Euro's for each part (made in Europe or US) And there is of coarse more than one piece in the viewer. And series number of several thousend pieces. Knowing the amount of people realy interested in this kind of viewer, it is not worh doing that, you will loose money. The 3D comunity will endorse you to build a reasonable priced viewer and the invester is facing backruptsy because it won't sell or sell with loss.
3D printing is one of the affordable new production methods to solve the need of very low series custom build 3D stuff for our comunity. It requires knowledge, craftmanship and perseverance. Besides the labor to finish each part to look good, which is the back side of 3D printing compared with metal milling.
It is good to design one 'platform' of what Matej and his team did as start point for other media solutions as MF and all other 5.5" sized LCD panels are close to the same size. Desiging all kinds of different enclosures and solutions is for a small 3D company / team is not reasonable meaning time and costs.
you are right if there might be a compromise. But complaning about higher costs and pointing out that you don't want to compromise and only want the best, is something you should only say to Sony or Samsung ;-)
Printing such an enclosure of his viewer takes about 10 hours (it is a guess but i might be right). not even talking about all the other parts. Finishing it, taking all left overs of the printing process, also takes the needed time. Making an adapter with all kinds of hooks, gaps and parts should interlock with eachother is realy a chalange. His way of 3D printing, FDM, needs a good printer, good printer settings and knoledge how to design for that printing method, CAD software, etc. You actually get a viewer build with the knowledge of someone who could work as proffesional designer ;-) so the costs are not high at all. Privately, and compared with big companies, yes it is higher then 3Dworld did with their MF viewers. But considder my what I have just written.
It is all a compromise as we, small 3D companies / teams and comunity, do not have the knowledge and finacial power to achieve things the big companies can. We can get close and there is alway's something to complain about or to improve on what the members of the comunity have build. But that is part of this comunity to encourage and to coment on things. So also your coments Francois are welcome as well ;-)