Obsidian is the latest $99 3D printer on the block — but can it succeed where others have failed?

When you picture the way that products will be created in the future, you possibly imagine them being designed in virtual reality by designers wearing form-fitting Star Trek-style jumpsuits, and printed using beautifully-designed 3D printers. That’s a vision that a company called Kodama is trying to make a modern day reality with its new $99 3D printer Kickstarter campaign. Well, except for the Star Trek-style jumpsuits, that is!

In an accompanying Kickstarter campaign video, the company depicts the story of designer Jenny Wu, who creates her unique jewelry in stainless steel using a VR headset (not included), then exporting the file, and printing it using the Obsidian 3D printer.

“We’ve built a high quality, affordable 3D printer that focuses on the user experience and making 3D printing easy and accessible to everyone, from students to design professionals, in a package that’s pleasing to look at,” Michael Husmann, founder and CEO of Kodama, told Digital Trends.

Aside from its promise of VR-integrated design and attractive appearance, the other big selling points of the Obsidian 3D printer are its out-of-the-box, assembly-free ease of use and its low price. Starting at just $99 for your choice of either a black or white model, it aims to spit out products that are a comparable quality to printers with a considerably higher price tag. A higher tier $249 “Obsidian Deluxe” model comes with additional features such as a Smart LCD screen, heated bed, built-in camera, and more.

There have, of course, been a slew of sub-$200 3D Kickstarter printers which have failed to materialize, however. From Peachy Printer to Tiko, investing your money in the promise of a cheap 3D printer that actually materializes isn’t exactly a no-risk proposition.

When we asked Husmann what guarantees he could offer that this printer would be different, he answered simply: “We’ve done it before. We launched [our previous Kickstarter] Trinus in 2016, and went on to deliver it to 3,100+ backers in 80+ countries.”

If you’re interested in getting hold of an Obsidian unit for yourself, you can currently join the 2,900+ backers who have so far helped it earn more than 7x its $100,000 fundraising target. Shipping is set to take place this December. That’s just in time to quickly 3D print your Christmas gifts… provided it turns out as promised.

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