Avara Custom (Avara) is a Custom In Ear Monitor (CIEM) manufacturer based in Surabaya, Indonesia. Avara Custom was founded in 2017 with the vision of providing the best quality CIEMs within the Indonesian market at the most compelling price.
Since its inception Avara has manufactured thousands of pairs of CIEMs for the Indonesian market and has 7 different lines which vary in price from 99 USD to 680 USD. Its products are used by a large number of music artists, musicians and sound engineers from around the world.
Why look at 3D printing?
The production of custom in ear monitors is normally a time consuming and costly activity. Each item is produced in multiple pieces, each being complex to manufacture. Every component needs to be molded, finished and assembled. So using traditional hand casting methods results in longer production times, more issues, less reliability and less precise end results.
The biggest drivers of the move to 3D printing have been the reduction in production time, materials and ultimately the costs in the manufacturing process. Additionally 3D printing provides increased efficiency and superior precision over manual methods.
The team at Avara understood that to stay competitive and give customers the high quality of device they needed, they had to move to 3D printing. The search for the right solution began almost immediately after the formation of the business. After looking at a number of competitors and lower priced competition including 3D Systems ProJet and Formlabs they met with EnvisionTEC distributor Chemtron Pte Ltd who introduced them to the range of printers and materials available.
EnvisionTEC has a history of operating within the audiology market and has a range of machines and materials developed specifically for the hearing industry. This includes an extensive range of materials that are CE and FDA approved bio-compatible for hearing use. This gave Avara the assurance that they were already looking at the right manufacturer.
EnvisionTEC has its technologies in use world-wide by many big players in both hearing aid and custom CIEM manufacture. Some of these manufacturers are using the EnvisionTEC printers almost constantly and have been for a many years. From this evidence, they knew that they could rely on the EnvisionTEC machines, knowing that costly downtime would be reduced to a minimum.
The team was already using 3Shape’s audiology focused modelling software, so they required a solution that would understand the output from this software. The STL agnostic nature of the EnvisionTEC range ensures that not only is the whole range compatible but any software they move to in the future should also be compatible.
After discussion, and looking at production levels required, combined with the space available within their production facilities, they settled on an EnvisionTEC Micro Advantage 3D printer together with the E-Shell series of materials. The printer allows for the accurate production of multiple shells per print with exceptional surface finish.
Since the implementation of the new EnvisionTEC printer and materials within its production process, Avara has been able to increase efficiency, improve production times, improve the fit quality of the product and reduce operational costs. This has resulted in lower costs for the end consumer and more competitive positioning within the market.
The first 3D printer was so effective that Avara has already implemented a second Micro Advantage. As the business and production grows Avara knows that the EnvisionTEC range will grow with them and that partner Chemtron Pte Ltd will be there to resolve any issues quickly.
Each pair of CIEMs can be made to the exact specifications of the wearer. Not just in the fit and feel, but also in the individual casing designs with an almost infinite selection of colours and designs available to the customer.
Thanks go to the teams at both Avara and Chemtron Pte Ltd for their support in the production of this case study.
Find Chemtron here: http://www.chemtron.asia/
“Chemtron Pte Ltd is the best provider we’ve worked with. The team provides extraordinary support, after sales service and good pricing. We see ourselves being partners long into the future.”
- Alvon, Founder, Avara