There's an explosion of extrusion-based personal 3D printers occurring now, with new entries emerging from all corners. One of them is the WitBox by Spanish company BQ.
Unlike many new entrants, the WitBox comes from an already established company. BQ "is a Spanish company dedicated to the multimedia devices and 3D printers sale." According to their spokesperson, they have been around for over seven years and now boast 400 employees. BQ has formed a new division dedicated to producing and marketing personal 3D printers.
Their first product is the WitBox, which has characteristics similar to most extrusion 3D printers. We noted a several interesting features:
- The WitBox has a very attractive case, because it "has to look like a printer and not be scary"
- The print volume is completely enclosed. It's not heated, but the enclosure will capture some heat from the extruder and improve print quality
- The door to the build chamber has a keyed lock. The purpose of the lock is for childproofing; lock it up during a print to avoid accidents with children. It also works on careless adults, too
- The device is very quiet when operating
- If you happen to have more than one WitBox, you can stack them several high to create a home "factory"
- The print volume's horizontal size is equal to A4 paper size
- The WitBox can print layers as small as 50 microns (0.05mm)
The company intends on marketing PLA plastic filament for use in the machine - or other machines, too. However, their plan is to provide the high-quality filament at a price much lower than competitors. The idea, we presume, is to subsidize filament sales with printer revenue, and drive more printer revenue because it's cheaper to print with their PLA.
The machine is assembled in Spain and currently sold only in Spain, but the company is seeking distributors in additional locations, including the UK, Russia and the USA. The WitBox is priced at €1,600 (USD$2,150).