The price of a dental 3D printer in the market ranges from a hundred to tens of thousand dollars. Why?
Firstly, let’s look at the types of light sources. All the resin printers in the market are divided into three types: SLA laser light source, DLP projection light source, and LCD light source.
DLP 光源平均成本比SLA和LCD的都要高，因为DLP光源被美国德州仪器长期垄断导致价格高昂，而SLA和LCD 的光源成本相对来说低很多，光源供应商可选性也很多，价格实惠。
The average DLP light source cost is higher than SLA and LCD. The DLP light source has been monopolized by Texas Instruments of the United States for a long time and then resulting in a high price. The cost of SLA and LCD light sources is much lower. There are many suppliers to choose from, so the price is also more affordable.
The printing speed:
Firstly, the SLA uses a laser beam, and the DLP and LCD use a light that can project the entire surface. When printing, the SLA uses the laser to scan and cure the model, in order from a point to a line and then from a line to a surface. In contrast, the DLP and LCD can cure an entire section at once, which greatly improves the printing speed. So, in terms of printing speed, the LCD and DLP printers are faster than SLA printers.
Maintenance and repair:
The type of light source determines the difficulty of maintenance and repair. The maintenance of SLA light source and DLP light source is extremely difficult. Most manufactures of SLA and DLP cannot repair the light source by themselves, and they have to send it back to the light source manufacturers to repair, which lead the maintenance period long and trouble. When about the LCD light source, most are modular design. They are easy to repair. Even the light source is broken, the cost of repair and maintenance is also very low.
After years of developing resin 3D printers, according to the accuracy of the light-curing printer on the market in 2021, the ultimate accuracy of DLP, SLA, and LCD are basically similar, and there is no big difference.
For SLA light source printers, the requirements for resin material are relatively high because the resin needs to be solidified, for instance, when the laser scanning. So, there is no large quantity of compatible resin materials for SLA on the market. In the DLP and LCD light source printer, the technology is surface exposure. By adjusting the light intensity and the exposure time, it’s easier to adapt to the resin on the market, so the users have more options to choose from. The LCD printer has extremely high-cost performance and allows most of the possible users to purchase and use the 3D printer. Therefore, the number of LCD printer users in the world is far more than SLA and DLP printers, which has given birth to more and more manufactures to develop, produce and sell resin materials for LCD printers, and in this way, leads the users to have more flexibility and wide-ranging options.
Whether the final printing accuracy of a printer can meet the needs of users depends on many factors, including hardware configuration parameters and brand, resin material accuracy and quality, slicing software algorithm, the user operating experience, and many other factors.
When choosing products, it’s better to choose the product from major manufacturers and brands, which has the after-sales service and quality relatively guaranteed.