As we enter the second half of this, the Decade of 3D Printing, we are coming to a crossroads. On one hand the Rebel open source RepRap crowd are clamoring to keep 3D printing free, man, while the Imperial forces of 3D Systems and Stratasys – along with countless imitators all attempting to commercialize 3D printing and create the first popular home printer – are locked in a race to the bottom in order to gain market share and users. The resulting dichotomy pits amazingly advanced DIY printers that sometimes explode into a gush of melted plastic and sadness with amazingly advanced proprietary printers that also sometimes explode into a gush of melted plastic and sadness. The XYZPrinting da Vinci 1.0 AiO is firmly on the latter side.

The AiO is a closed box that contains a full ABS 3D printing system as well as a laser 3D scanner. A turntable under the built platform spins objects slowly as a laser takes in their contours and the resulting objects can be printed directly from the scanning software. It is literally a 3D copier with true object-in/object-out systems. In short, it is a Star Trekian replicator – within reason.

First, lets’ take a moment to marvel at what this thing truly is. You can place an object into it and make a 3D copy of that object. If you really think about what that means you realize that we have moved from the age of bits into the age of atoms. While the AiO might not be the best 3D printer in the world it does bring 3D copying into your home or office. Let that sink in. A few years ago that was deemed impossible, the realm of science fiction. But no longer. But that’s not the most amazing thing. The most amazing thing about this printer is its $799 price tag. That’s right: $799 gets you a 7.8×7.8 x7.5 inch build envelope in ABS as well as a 3D scanner. A good color laser printer cost that much in 2013.

But how does it work? Everything about the AiO is adequate. The prints are surprisingly smooth and detailed. A 3D print test I ran (below) passed with flying colors and a Mario star tree topper I printed looked like it could come out of the Nintendo Store. There was no clean-up – the printer prints onto a heated glass surface that is pre-calibrated to ensure excellent prints – and the machine is nearly silent except for the muffled motion of the motor and a small fan. I had no complaints regarding the printing process either although the software was a bit buggy on the Mac.

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The scanner was good but required planning. Scanning shiny objects is not recommended and even some detail is lost on matte objects. I scanned a few objects using the machine including a matte plaster gargoyle and a porcelain elephant. You can check the gargoyle out here but the elephant didn’t make the cut. A little lion statue, however, looked great except for some missing pixels around the head. The results, while not perfect, were just fine for printing. Like the photocopiers of old, the quality of the 3D copies that come out of this machine is lacking. I can only imagine what would happen if I printed a copy of a copy of a copy. Perhaps I’d create the first 3D zine?

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Put these two amazing features together and you get something truly special. Be forewarned, however: the AiO is actually huge, probably twice as big as a Makerbot and a little bigger than a home laser printer. It’s also limited in a few important ways.