In Part 1 of this Review I tested the Structure Sensor—or iSense—hardware and the apps build by the manufacturer. In this second part, I’m focussing on a third party app. While the name might sound a bit funny, itSeez3D is very powerful and polished 3D Scanning app. The iPad version is specifically designed to be used with the Structure Sensor and there’s also a Windows version designed to be used with Intel’s RealSense R200 sensor.
If you’ve read my previous 3D Scanner Review of the 3D Systems Sense you know that I was impressed by the ease-of-use and geometric details for a device priced below €450. But the quality of the color information — or textures — the Sense captures are completely underwhelming. This has been fixed with the Sense 2 I reviewed later)
In this Review I’m testing the Structure Sensor made by a Occipital. This device was also available as the 3D Systems iSense but that rebranded version has been discontinued*.
I got my Structure Sensor from the Dutch 3D Printing and 3D Scanning Store MakerPoint.
Update February 2017
Next to the “Sense” mentioned in the intro, 3D Systems used to sell the “iSense” which was, or is, more or less a rebranded Structure Sensor. The iSense was manufactured by Occipital and looks almost identical to a Structure Sensor, but there are differences. 3D Systems discontinued the product in 2016, but remaining stock is currently sold online at massive discounts op to 80%.
For all details about the differences between iSense and Structure Sensor, links to the discounted items on Amazon and eBay, software compatibility and a recently introduced exchange program that allows iSense owners to swap it for a Structure Sensor with $100 discount, click the link below.
I’ve ordered an iSense through eBay myself and will review it when it arrives in combination with the dedicated iSense software to see how that compares to the apps I discuss below and in part 2 of this post.
If you live in the US, a Structure Sensor will cost $379 with an iPad Air 2 bracket on Amazon. You can also buy them directly from Occipital for that price and have a choice of various iPad brackets and accessories such as a wide angle lens and a pro charger cable that can charge the Structure Sensor and iPad at the same time!
If you live in the EU and don’t want the hassle of international shipping and added customs costs and taxes you can best get the Structure Sensor with fitting bracket from Makerpoint for €499.
It’s compatible with all iPads newer than the 4th Gen iPad and iPad mini 2 (previously known as “iPad Mini with Retina Display”) — including recently added support for the iPad Pro 9.7″ & 12.9″.
I’ve tested it with the least powerful compatible device, the iPad mini 2, which has a 5 megapixel camera with an aperture of f/2.4. Since this camera is used to capture color details, it’s safe to say that using a newer iPad will result in better texture quality. This iPad Pro 9.7″, for example, has a 12 megapixel camera with a faster f/2.2 lens. That being said, I think that testing with an iPad mini 2 is a great benchmark and this iPad is still being sold for €265, bringing the total minimal costs of the Sensor + Bracket + iPad to €765 — which is still a lot less than many other 3D Scanners. (All prices I mention are in Euros and include 21% Dutch VAT).