The Objet 500 Connex3 deserves another post as we weren’t able to fit in the specs and other details in just one post. Let’s review some questions:
How big can you print with it? It has the same volume as the Objet 500 Connex.
How much does it cost? We believe the MSRP is approximately USD$350,000, but Stratasys resellers may alter that value up or down somewhat. But we wouldn’t expect to see discounts soon.
Can you use the new color resins on the old Connex2 machines? No, the materials are keyed and will not be recognized as valid materials on anything other than the Connex3 series.
Can you print flexible colored objects? Not yet. Stratasys showed a rather floppy printed color palette, so they’re definitely working on this capability. However, they said it would be available as a combination machine firmware update and new set of materials this April. It will be called the “Connex3 Plus”.
How much do these fancy colored materials cost? The MSRP is thought to be around USD$300 per kilogram (or about USD$136 per pound).
How many new colors are available? The new set of materials is composed of three existing digital materials (White, Black and Transparent) and three new materials (Cyan, Magenta and Yellow). They are arranged into ten possible material/color palettes enumerated thusly: CMT, CYT, YMT, CYW, CMW, CYB, CMY, MYW, CMB and MYB.
How can this possibly work? Stratasys engineers have found a way for the print head to deposit tiny droplets of resin in precisely distributed patterns that effect consistent material mixing. It’s not just sloshing them together.
So how many materials can be printed? Stratasys says the Connex2 offered 160 materials, effectively. The new Connex3 can produce over 500 different materials.
How do I assign colors to each portion of my 3D model? The associated Objet Studio software lets you pick materials from the ten available palettes and assign them to individual shells within your 3D model. Yes, you’ll have to carve up your model into pieces with another 3D software tool of your choice. There is no means of automatically producing color gradients, for example.
What does the Connex3 look like when printing? Like this. Note the preponderance of white support material surrounding the objects.