You’d imagine that a rapid-prototyping company that has BMW, Lamborghini, and Volkswagen on their client list would have some incredibly high standards of quality. You’d be absolutely right in doing so! A while back we featured 3ERP’s services that help bring designers’ concepts to life, and it only seemed fair that I send one of my own concepts over to see exactly how good their services were, and here’s the short version: It’s bloody amazing! 3ERP managed to seamlessly reproduce my 3D model, literally bringing it to life. Every detail, from a single speaker-grille hole to a tiny metallic charging pin was replicated with sheer perfection. It literally felt like a product right off the shelf, surpassing anything I could make in a week’s time with the tools at my disposal.
Below is the prototype, manufactured to scale at 3ERP’s center in GuangDong, China. Their service and my deliverables were set up to be so simple, it honestly is as easy as hitting a render button. All I did was send over my 3D files, a basic list of materials to be used, my artwork, and rendering samples. 3ERP’s quotation service used all this to generate a quotation free of charge. All you need to do to proceed is to approve the quote and provide a delivery address. I received my sample earlier last week, and straight out of the box, the prototype looks as good as the renders do.
The prototype gaming controller is made to scale, CNC machined from ABS plastic, and fits my Pixel 2 phone perfectly. The buttons feel exactly the way they should, and the joystick is as inviting as the real deal. Flippers on either side hold my phone in place with rubber pads for added friction, and every detail is painstakingly replicated, right down to the small headphone icon embossed right beside the headphone jack. Flip it over to the back and the artwork is lined up and printed with perfect alignment. Even on the front, the Xbox logo, the Xbox Cloud logo, and the symbols on the buttons are printed with perfection. 3ERP’s understanding of material, surfacing, and finish is pretty remarkable too. The product is glossy or matte where it needs to be and metallic where indicated.
At the end of the day, there’s little difference (if none) between the render and 3ERP’s prototype. With their capabilities of handling everything from prototyping techniques like injection molding, 3D printing, CNC machining to surface treatments, painting, coating, printing, and assembly, 3ERP’s command over every aspect of the rapid prototyping process means designers get to perfectly fabricate and execute their concepts without wasting any time sanding away at pieces of wood, plastic or foam, and without having to invest in expensive machines like 3D printers and CNC milling centers!