When it comes to tech, we sometimes have to take the creator’s endorsement with a grain of salt. The list of those who have claimed ownership of a revolutionary product or technology over the years only to be proven hyperbolic is immense. One should be especially wary of claims of game-changing innovation at Consumer Technology’s annual CES conference, which gets underway in Las Vegas today (the 9th) and runs until the 12th of January. With more than 184,000 guests in attendance and 4,000 exhibiting companies vying for their attention, not to mention headlines, the ‘Global Stage for Innovation’ is an event at which sensationalizing one’s brand is to be expected.
However, one would be derelict not to pay close attention to the claims of California-based Airwolf 3D amidst a greater push to accelerate 3D printing in the consumer and industrial markets. They have claimed that their EVO Additive Manufacturing System, which they refuse to refer to as a 3D printer at all – instead of using the acronym AMS – is ‘so advanced’ as to be ‘unlike anything out there’. Co-founder and CEO of Airwolf 3D, Erick Wolf, sees many a reason why the EVO AMS is not to be lumped in with the other technologies that we generally refer to as 3D printers.
“The EVO is faster, stronger, and more accurate than any desktop 3D printer — it delivers a premium 3D manufacturing experience at less than half the cost of machines that offer equivalent performance. The EVO far surpasses the capabilities of a traditional desktop 3D printer. It’s a true desktop Additive Manufacturing Center.”
In making this claim, Wolf points to several features of the EVO AMS. The MATRIX Touchscreen, GENESIS Microcontroller, Air Cleansing System, PartSave™, FailSafe™, Tri-Heat™ thermal management, soluble support, and the ability to 3D print in metal are all noteworthy, but it is the EVO’s ‘Zombie Mode’ that is being touted by Wolf as perhaps its most defining characteristic.
Zombie Mode, officially called PartSave by Airwolf 3D, is aimed at mitigating damage done to partially-printed parts or objects in the case of a power outage or unforeseen interruption. Wolf explains why their method of saving 3D-printed parts in the instance of partial print scenarios is different than efforts by their competitors, including the Original Prusa i3 MK3 3D printer.
“PartSave is different — and more reliable. The Prusa machine relies on sensors, which can be unreliable. Airwolf 3D uses positional data for extreme accuracy and reliability. PartSave is more reliable because the EVO saves into a file. You can even swap the board, if you have to, and then resume printing,” said an Airwolf spokesperson.
The EVO also contains a feature called FailSafe, which allows users to resume printing in the case of a jam or other error once the issue is resolved, instead of having to start completely from scratch. Though it will carry a hefty price tag of $6,995, you must consider what you get for that price, as Airwolf 3D’s EVO AMS looks to be a top of the line 3D printer with the most advanced and comprehensive features seen in a desktop 3D printing system to date.