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Liquidmetal inventor says Apple is years away from using alloy - Page 2

post #41 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bregalad View Post

 

Despite Apple's vast financial resources and lineup of Chinese manufacturers begging to build stuff for them it would be really hard, even for Apple, to keep secret the widespread retooling of entire factories with liquid metal fabrication.

 

This is probably the best comment here so far. No one is going to keep that process under raps. You make perfect sense.

post #42 of 73
Last time I checked, the iPad wasn't 3.5 inches. And mine's always in the room right with me, unlike my own Thunderbolt Display.

How about you?

You carry your 27" display with you, or are you using modern mobile technology now?

'Upgrading' an Apple news site to a format not compatible with iOS devices reeks of utter lack of foresight.
post #43 of 73

Reworking reclaimed aluminium (the shavings) takes far less power than is used to produce the original aluminium.  Precision casting for liquid metal will also produce waste and require a lot of power.  

 

It is fair to say that Apple will be weighing up the cost of processing aluminium against liquid metal and wont be moving to liquid metal until such time as the technologies and processes exist to make it economical than aluminium.

post #44 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post

Reworking reclaimed aluminium (the shavings) takes far less power than is used to produce the original aluminium.  Precision casting for liquid metal will also produce waste and require a lot of power.  

 

It is fair to say that Apple will be weighing up the cost of processing aluminium against liquid metal and wont be moving to liquid metal until such time as the technologies and processes exist to make it economical than aluminium.

 

While it is true that recycling reclaimed aluminum takes less energy than is used to produce the original aluminum, where in the world did you reach the conclusion that casting requires a lot of power? It's actually a fairly low power process. And the fact that you probably need a lot less material than you need for aluminum also weighs in its favor. Furthermore, there is a LOT more to the economics than just the raw material cost. There is a lot of waste (in the muda sense) involved with machining aluminum, recovering shavings, and recycling the aluminum.

 

Your second paragraph is incorrect, too. Apple does not automatically go for the lowest cost option. There are plenty of cases where Apple has chosen a more expensive component where it added enough value to justify the extra expense. In the case of liquidmetal, there are plenty of advantages, so it's entirely conceivable that Apple would pay a premium over aluminum.

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post #45 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by irnchriz View Post
It is fair to say that Apple [...] wont be moving to liquid metal until such time as the technologies and processes exist to make it economical than aluminium.

More profitable, not necessarily more economical.

 

.tsooJ

post #46 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

I suspect it will happen at some point for the very reasons jragosta gives.  If the detractors think back to the process of machining a uni-body MacBook out of a block of aluminum it was totally unviable.  It was cost prohibitive and slow.  How did that work out?  If Apple want to do this they can IMHO.

I think the issue is the post-cast machining that needs to be done to insure tolerances as well as clean up of cast pour points, flash, drilling and tapping for screws, etc… These are non-trivial and for the reasons mentioned cannot be done with the same old machining/milling tools that we are used to with aluminum. It reminds me of the transition in the aircraft industry from high strength aluminum to titanium -- they used titanium for the structurally critical backbone and wing spars to lighten and strengthen but they do not use it for the skin; that is still done with good old aluminum. I don't think that it is not possible -- but very difficult to turn out reliable product in the hundred-thousands to millions of units and retain the high quality standard.

 

It will come in time when cost versus return makes sense. The high grade aluminum unibody is very durable, could be a bit better I suppose for scratch resistance but not an issue that is probably worth bragging rights only at a high cost.

 

Just my 2 scents er uh sense oh hell cents.

post #47 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

 

...In the case of liquidmetal, there are plenty of advantages, so it's entirely conceivable that Apple would pay a premium over aluminum.

Not saying I completely disagree but I think your argument is better against the cheesy PCs made of plastic than they are against the aluminum unibody. Would you mind comparing these advantages over aluminum i.e., those that are worth the investment and I would guess much higher cost at least early on.

post #48 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Damn_Its_Hot View Post

Not saying I completely disagree but I think your argument is better against the cheesy PCs made of plastic than they are against the aluminum unibody. Would you mind comparing these advantages over aluminum i.e., those that are worth the investment and I would guess much higher cost at least early on.

 

The same advantages apply. People complain about their aluminum MBPs getting scratched - that would be less likely with Liquidmetal. People complain about their MBPs getting dented - which would be less likely with Liquidmetal. People complain about fingerprints and stains - which will be less common with Liquidmetal. And, of course, the greater strength of Liquidmetal may mean a lighter product and almost certainly more space for internal components (such as batteries) than the aluminum case.


And the benefits are even more important with the iPhone.

Realistically, I don't expect to see a Liquidmetal MacBook Air or Pro this year. Rather, I would anticipate that the iPhone and/or iPod Touch would be the first major product to use it. Then the MacBook Air, and finally the MacBook Pro.

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post #49 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by ljocampo View Post

 

I guess it's still to difficult for Samsung to copy it yet!! lol.gif

 Latest rumor is that the Samsung Galaxy III to be released tonight has a liquid metal case. Obviously a different composition liquid metal to the one Apple has exclusive rights too.

 

True or not? We will know in a couple of hours.

post #50 of 73

"no suitable manufacturing infrastructure yet to take full advantage of this alloy technology."

 

there was no manufacturing infrastructure to make the large seamless panes of glass for the NYC store either.... until apple paid for the tooling to build it (and most likely got exclusive rights to the factory output to build the new campus which also uses huge panes of glass too).

 

While Corning had the formula for Gorilla Glass.. they weren't making it until Jobs convinced the them to retool a facility to make screens.

 

with a 100B in the bank.. apple can afford to do things like this.

 

 

 

post #51 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nairb View Post

 Latest rumor is that the Samsung Galaxy III to be released tonight has a liquid metal case. Obviously a different composition liquid metal to the one Apple has exclusive rights too.

 

True or not? We will know in a couple of hours.

 

It's very unlikely.


Liquidmetal is not an alloy. It is a range of alloys involving different atomic diameters which make crystallization difficult or impossible. As such, it is likely that any alloy composition which behaves as a liquid metal would fall under the claims of LQMT's patents. Apple has the exclusive right to use LQMT's patents in the manufacture of electronic devices.  So, your guess would require:

1. Samsung found a way around the LQMT patents

2. Samsung's products are good enough for production

3. Samsung has invested the time and money in setting up production of an alternate liquidmetal alloy without anyone learning about it (keep in mind that this thread suggests that it takes 3-5 years and several hundred million dollars in investments to do this. While I believe his numbers include the cost of an entire factory to produce millions of units, it would still take a lot of time and a lot of money - particularly if they were doing it from scratch rather than using LQMT's years of experience).


Not very likely at all.

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post #52 of 73

I thought for sure I was going to have a liquidmetal iPhone in July... Seriously though, I think it would be great if apple could find a way to incorporate a sturdy and light metal for the iPhone casing as long as it does not result reception issues or odd looking plastic areas like the original iPhone.  Still, I am sure they would make it look good even if it had to be a mixture between metal and plastic for the radios.

post #53 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmovieman View Post

I thought for sure I was going to have a liquidmetal iPhone in July... Seriously though, I think it would be great if apple could find a way to incorporate a sturdy and light metal for the iPhone casing as long as it does not result reception issues or odd looking plastic areas like the original iPhone.  Still, I am sure they would make it look good even if it had to be a mixture between metal and plastic for the radios.

 

Why? No one who has paid any attention at all would think July. As for LiquidMetal, eh, I hope we DO see it happen. People saying no has always been the cue for Apple to prove them wrong.

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post #54 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by dmovieman View Post

I thought for sure I was going to have a liquidmetal iPhone in July... Seriously though, I think it would be great if apple could find a way to incorporate a sturdy and light metal for the iPhone casing as long as it does not result reception issues or odd looking plastic areas like the original iPhone.  Still, I am sure they would make it look good even if it had to be a mixture between metal and plastic for the radios.

 

 I don't think your timing is plausible. It's unlikely that they'll be able to ramp up that quickly - and the iPhone 4S has only been out half a year.

That aside, a phone with a Liquidmetal back would probably still need a cut-out for radio transmission. I haven't found anything definitive, but what I'm reading suggests that Liquidmetal would be opaque to radio waves (or at least, would attenuate them greatly).

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post #55 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

"Such product will likely bring an innovative user interface and industrial design together, and will also be very difficult to copy or duplicate with other material technologies," Peker said.

 

That's the first thing I thought when I heard about the exclusive deal with Liquidmetal.  The copycats will be forced to use plastic (inferior durability) or traditional metal (higher manufacturing complexity and/or cost.)  Notebook makers are already unable to match Apple's economy of scale with machined aluminum enclosures.  Liquidmetal will help to increase that gap.

 

By the way, Jonathan Ive doesn't just design products.  He also designs manufacturing processes for the production of those products.  Watch the movie "Objectified" for a tiny peek into Ive's design work.  (IMDb reference: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1241325/)

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post #56 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

 

That is not correct. It is easily suitable for larger parts. For example, there are already tennis rackets and golf clubs on the market which use Liquidmetal alloys. The case for a MacBook Pro is hardly more difficult than a tennis racket. And an iPhone case would be even easier. Look at their website for examples. In particular look under medical applications to see the case of an analyzer which is built on liquidmetal. That case is far more complex than an iPhone case and not that different than a MacBook Pro case (albeit smaller).


The investment is not because it's difficult to make something like an iPhone case, but rather that it's difficult to do so by the millions. That requires a large number of machines and tooling which take time to build. 

I don't know about golf clubs, but tennis rackets have 4 small areas of liquidmetal alloys spaced around the head. They look to be about 2-3 inches long each, slightly curved. The rackets are NOT completely made of liquidmetal alloy.

 

Head Liquidmetal 8 Racquets

post #57 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by elroth View Post

I don't know about golf clubs, but tennis rackets have 4 small areas of liquidmetal alloys spaced around the head. They look to be about 2-3 inches long each, slightly curved. The rackets are NOT completely made of liquidmetal alloy.

 

Head Liquidmetal 8 Racquets

 

Thanks for confirming that it's not just a coating.

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post #58 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post

 

 For example, there are already tennis rackets and golf clubs on the market which use Liquidmetal alloys. 

 

Are there golf clubs being made now? I had read they tested some with a LiquidMetal head awhile back but they were shattering after as few as 40 strokes. That's according to the Wiki you've mentioned before. Perhaps they've perfected it now. Gotta link to golf clubs using it? That would be an excellent way to prove the impact resistance.

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post #59 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

Are there golf clubs being made now? I had read they tested some with a LiquidMetal head awhile back but they were shattering after as few as 40 strokes. That's according to the Wiki you've mentioned before. Perhaps they've perfected it now. Gotta link to golf clubs using it? That would be an excellent way to prove the impact resistance.

 

There appear to be a number. 

Google 'liquidmetal golf club". (funny how none of the Apple haters seem to be able to figure out how to use Google to answer a question)

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post #60 of 73

Funny when someone attempts to make fun of another member for not doing a Google search, yet doesn't do one himself and offer a link.

 

Yes, I had already done a Google search, and no I don't find anyone making LiquidMetal golf clubs. There's a few old "non-conforming" clubs (as one golfer called them) on eBay, but nothing being produced currently that I can find. Perhaps you could help a member out with a real link to a current producer Jragosta.

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post #61 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

Funny when someone attempts to make fun of another member for not doing a Google search, yet doesn't do one himself and offer a link.

 

Yes, I had already done a Google search, and no I don't find anyone making LiquidMetal golf clubs. There's a few old "non-conforming" clubs (as one golfer called them) on eBay, but nothing being produced currently that I can find. Perhaps you could help a member out with a real link to a current producer Jragosta.

Geez. I guess we can understand why you hate Apple so much. You can't even figure out how to do a Google search and you're upset because Mac users are able to do things with their computers.

 

http://www.overstock.com/Sports-Toys/Liquidmetal-HLS-3-Wood-Golf-Club/2768153/product.html

 

http://www.golfproductnews.com/liquidmetal-golf-fairway-woods/

 

http://www.cbssports.com/story/5564401

 

http://www.equip2golf.com/reviews/fairway_woods/LMG_liquidmetal.html

 

http://www.ausgolf.com.au/liquidmetal-ls-1-putter

 

http://www.lmgsportsinc.com/
(Sorry, I can't read it, but the summary on Yahoo was:

  1. Liquidmetal Golf Clubs designed for the mid to high handicapper utilizing the Liquidmetal technology. Liquidmetal is harder than titanium, more forgiving,and vibration free"

 

http://www.overstock.com/Sports-Toys/Liquidmetal-Tour-Vision-FA-1-Milled-Putter/2478670/product.html

 

And so on. And on. And on.

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post #62 of 73

As I said Jr, none of those are currently produced as far as I can tell. Rather than jumping all over as tho you've proven something, just one link to a current producer is all I originally requested. It would be even more evidence of the impact resistance, and a useful reply.  

 

You've not offered anything other than poor attempts at mocking instead of an answer so I don't even know why you bothered responding. I suppose this is where you disappear from the conversation rather than admit any mistake. 

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post #63 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

As I said Jr, none of those are currently produced as far as I can tell. Rather than jumping all over as tho you've proven something, just one link to a current producer is all I originally requested. It would be even more evidence of the impact resistance, and a useful reply.  

 

You've not offered anything other than poor attempts at mocking instead of an answer so I don't even know why you bothered responding. I suppose this is where you disappear from the conversation rather than admit any mistake. 

 

Those are all currently available for purchase. If you want to know if they're being produced, call the manufacturer.

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post #64 of 73

Researched. They're not, having been discontinued years ago. But at least you're consistent in not admitting a mistake when you make one.

 

Really was no biggie to begin with. If you didn't have a legitimate answer it would have been better not to answer with mocking to begin with as tho you knew something. You're a smart guy, but there's a lot of smart guys here. Belittling others doesn't get you additional points or respect. You might consider some courtesy.

 

now wait for smart-aleck response along the lines of "I only respect those who have earned it" or something to that effect

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post #65 of 73

Researched. They're not, having been discontinued years ago. But at least you're consistent in not admitting a mistake when you make one.

 

Really was no biggie to begin with. If you didn't have a legitimate answer it would have been better not to answer with mocking to begin with as tho you knew something. You're a smart guy, but there's a lot of smart guys here. Belittling others doesn't get you additional points or respect. You might consider some courtesy.

 

now wait for response along the lines of "I only respect those who have earned it" or something to that effect

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post #66 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gatorguy View Post

Researched. They're not, having been discontinued years ago. But at least you're consistent in not admitting a mistake when you make one.

 

Really was no biggie to begin with. If you didn't have a legitimate answer it would have been better not to answer with mocking to begin with as tho you knew something. You're a smart guy, but there's a lot of smart guys here. Belittling others doesn't get you additional points or respect. You might consider some courtesy.

 

now wait for response along the lines of "I only respect those who have earned it" or something to that effect

 

Maybe while you're asking someone to teach you how to use Google, you can also ask them to teach you how to use this forum so you don't have to double post.



In reality, I couldn't care less about your nonsense. You asked about availability of Liquidmetal golf clubs. I gave you a bunch of sources. If you want to worry about whether they're actually producing more, that's your problem. If you were really serious, being able to buy one would be far more important than whether the factory was still making them.

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post #67 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by jragosta View Post If you were really serious, being able to buy one would be far more important than whether the factory was still making them.

No, it's more important whether they were still producing them. Indications are that they weren't holding up to impact. If there was still a producer of Liquidmetal clubs that would indicate they've overcome the problem. Since there apparently isn't perhaps impact-resistance might not be one of its big advantages.


Edited by Gatorguy - 5/4/12 at 11:14am
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post #68 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post

You seem to be suffering from a really serious envy problem.

Wait, what? Yes, that's right -- I'm envious of all the Android owners out there because they are lucky enough to have an operating system with a super-cool name.

Or did you somehow mistake my homage/parody of Apple's innovativeness and Steve Jobsian adjectives as signs of me being an Apple-hater? Seeing as I how first read this thread on my iPhone 4, first commented from my MacBook and now am responding on a Mini, you decide...
post #69 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by tmhisey View Post


Wait, what? Yes, that's right -- I'm envious of all the Android owners out there because they are lucky enough to have an operating system with a super-cool name.
Or did you somehow mistake my homage/parody of Apple's innovativeness and Steve Jobsian adjectives as signs of me being an Apple-hater? Seeing as I how first read this thread on my iPhone 4, first commented from my MacBook and now am responding on a Mini, you decide...

I do decide.  Haters often say they own Apple hardware X, Y and Z, giving them the right to say certain things about it.  It's a ridiculously trite pattern of non-working attempted subterfuge.

 

Well, if they were really owners they would be speaking differently.  Not that they wold always sing the praises unequivocally, but there is a marked difference between pining for a better experience and just plain ripping the experience.

 

Having done the very simple I own X, Y and Z pattern, but not writing anything that communicates an actual experience with the products does not bode well for us believing you. It's not hard to expose a poseur, especially a brand new poster-version.

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post #70 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

I do decide.  Haters often say they own Apple hardware X, Y and Z, giving them the right to say certain things about it.  It's a ridiculously trite pattern of non-working attempted subterfuge.

 

Well, if they were really owners they would be speaking differently.  Not that they wold always sing the praises unequivocally, but there is a marked difference between pining for a better experience and just plain ripping the experience.

 

Having done the very simple I own X, Y and Z pattern, but not writing anything that communicates an actual experience with the products does not bode well for us believing you. It's not hard to expose a poseur, especially a brand new poster-version.

 

 

The funny thing is that you get people like 'I am a zzzz' posting completely fabricated reviews on forums. Look at the bottom of this page and see the 'recent reviews' section. zzz posts reviews on both the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 within 15 minutes of each other. Given his posting history, it's extremely unlikely that he owns two iPhones, let alone uses both of them. Not to mention, of course, that the reviews are completely unlike the reviews of people who actually own the devices and read exactly like zzz's normal drivel.

 

I wonder what kind of mental illness makes you spend that much time on a forum for a product that you don't use, never plan to use, and won't even consider using so that you can insult people who use the product and spend countless hours simply bad-mouthing a product you don't use. And then you create fabricated reviews to try to make the product look bad. It's one thing to talk about a product that you use and like among people with similar interests, but that behavior is just bizarre.

Unless he's being paid to do this, it suggests a serious character defect.

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post #71 of 73

The old iPhones were easy to spot, they had aluminum skin.  These new iPhone 5 models, forget it, they sweat, have bad breath, everything.  

post #72 of 73
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junkyard Dawg View Post
The old iPhones were easy to spot, they had aluminum skin.  These new iPhone 6 models, forget it, they sweat, have bad breath, everything.  

 

Which you know, because you've seen them, touched them, used them, etc.

 

Ah, wait… 

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post #73 of 73

Time to update your movie history, dude.

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