Need to hear!
For some companies, 3D printing is a no-brainer. They have their own battery of printers that they use to create prototypes, which they use to test, fine tune, modify, test again, and so on. To be able to further develop and optimize their products and applications quickly and optimally. What are they going to do with Parts on Demand? Well, read on.
Job Koreman of Mayht
We are visiting Mayht in Nieuw Vennep. This is where the speaker is redefined. And Job Koreman, head of design and concept design, tells us about the how and why. “The fundamentals of the speaker have hardly changed in the last few decades while the way we listen to sound has evolved tremendously. We went from analog to digital, both in the sound carriers like vinyl, tape, CDs and streaming – and also the equipment like amplifiers where we went from tubes to digital amplifiers. While the technology changed, the components mostly stayed the same. In the case of the speaker, you still see one motor, a centrally placed magnet-coil combination creates air pressure on a diaphragm. And while that is optimized everywhere, we started looking at the basics. With a physics slant, actually.”
More and better
Koreman grabbed a few examples to show what’s so different about the “Mayht principle. A double-sided speaker with a magnet-coil combination at four corners, each moving independently of the other. “Because we apply four drivers, and place them off center, we have much more surface area and much more sound output.” Not just more, but better, we hear at the demonstration. “It’s not just in the drivers though,” laughs Job. “It’s a combination of different elements that we’ve protected with a good amount of patents. But the result is a simple speaker unit where no other weird requirements or special amplifiers are needed. And where we achieve great linearity of sound without tools.”
At Mayht there are a couple of FDM printers and Job shows when they print themselves and when Parts on Demand is around the corner. “We use our own printers mainly for development. You can adjust and optimize the functionality and design very quickly. But if we make samples for products, we have them printed by Parts on Demand. With SLS it just looks a lot better and it allows us to realize small numbers with a nice quality. What is also nice about SLS is that we can realize more geometry with it.”
Cut and paste
The choice for a nice looking product in low quantities is between five-axis milling or SLS. “We can easily modify our designs, and easily cut and paste parts for a new design. I’ve been behind 3D printers myself, so I know something about it, but you notice that at Parts on Demand there really is a large amount of expertise in that area. We have very deliberately chosen not to produce, but to keep our activities in the field of development. On request and in consultation with the manufacturers, we develop the drivers for the various markets and applications.”
When we ask him which markets are going to be particularly happy about this, the answer is quick: “which ones aren’t?” So a counter-question. A counter-question that makes us think about compact builds and great performance. Well, we want those everywhere. But where specifically it can now be expected to be first in the market, Koreman cannot make any statements about that. “We are talking to several producers, but are not allowed to talk about it. It’s a bit tricky, because we are very proud of what we do and we can’t and shouldn’t tell everyone. But I’m sure that will work out in the future.
Several demo products have been made so far. “With this we can prove that this technology works. We have made our story credible with this because we can show that with little modification you get a lot more output. With these demos, we were able to show many different parties what the possibilities are, across the breadth of the market. We are now working with and for the producers to work out practical matters for assembly. And we see that many parties are also actively putting forward ideas themselves. They see that the advantages are enormous; just think of the trucks full of equipment that go to festivals. There could be a few fewer of them driving around, if you can get by with much less size.”
How nice is it when you can surprise yourself with the results? This also appears to be the case. “Of course, we ourselves didn’t always have an idea of what the operation would be like in the different applications. And sometimes we were surprised by that ourselves. And then with the idea that it could be even better. Because we are working with multiple motors in one driver, but of course there is still room for improvement. For now, we are sticking with one format and working on increasing the scale. In every market, the needs and circumstances are different, so we can go in all directions.”
It all started with the founders, brothers Timothy and Mattias Scheek. They are true lovers of sound and design and have been building speakers since childhood. “They wanted the best quality sound in their speakers and to challenge the status quo. They went to work on driver technology, which moves the air that makes up the sound. With the idea that they wanted to make a new standard. Out of that search came the principle of a diaphragm front and back and the motors moved out of the excursion path. With multiple motors you take up less space this way anyway. And because you use multiple motors, the whole thing responds much more flexibly.”
At Mayht, the tasks are divided between two teams. One team has a complete focus on the drivers. The other team focuses on the preconditions for an attractive concept. “So for the R&D phase, we printed a lot of parts. We had been in contact with Parts on Demand for some time and are very satisfied with that cooperation.” He laughs and says, “their flexibility is as great as our product. And like us, they take a clear stance on the type of customers. That gives focus and more support than just running and delivering. And what’s important to us is consistency.”
“With 3D drawing and printing, you make the translation to the real world and you can correct errors endlessly. It gives engineers a way to come back to the real world.” About his own role: “I myself am working on the longer runs and have taken care of the start of the prototyper. The first time I heard anything about 3D printing was on the television program De Wereld Draait Door. There Ultimaker presented it as gospel and I found that fascinating. In secondary school I did my profile paper on the subject and it really became my hobby, working with it and designing for it. I also studied this subject during my industrial design studies in Delft, but in almost every technical study these days, it is impossible to imagine technology without it. And during my internship at Lego I saw the real professional applications. There was really everything you can think of in this field.”
We work with different parties, but with Parts on Demand we really have a very good feeling. The transparency and openness of the company is really textbook and that works very well, just like a restaurant with an open kitchen. Showing what you do with an open mind, no fancy stories but very concrete. It is the combination of the flexibility and openness that makes very small steps possible. So that gives us another layer of opportunity.”