The 3D scanner market is small compared to other markets like 3D printers but there are still a lot of options to choose from. This is especially true if you’re looking for a tripod-mounted structured light desktop 3D scanner. There are quite a few to choose from and on the outside they all look very similar: they all contain a digital projector and two cameras. So what are the differences then?
It turns out that beside differences in hardware specifications there are bigger differences in software. Manufacturers of scanners like this have usually built there software solution, including the structured light algorithms, from the ground up. This means they all offer a different user interface and workflow. And depending on your intended purpose one solution might fit into your own workflow than another.
After having reviewed the EinScan series of structured light scanners and the HP S3/DAVID SLS-3 it’s now time to test the Scan in a Box. Made in Italy by Open Technolgies, a company that also manufacturers industrial 3D scanners, this scanner is their first product aimed towards professionals with a tighter budget.
Let’s see how it works and how it compares to its main competitors.
At CES 2018, Shining 3D announced new modules for their EinScan line of 3D Scanners.
Discovery Pack for EinScan-SE & EinScan-SP
When I reviewed the Einscan-SE & SP I was surprised …
When it comes making 3D captures of objects with professional structured light scanning hardware you usually have to choose between two types of 3D scanners, depending on …
Last year I reviewed HP’s original Sprout Pro. I concluded that while the idea of a super-all-in-one PC with integrated 3D scanning capabilities was a great concept, the software that came with the machine was too basic to get the most out of the hardware. Specifically the fully automatic software lacked any kind of control over combining multiple cycles of structured light scans.
Recently, HP has released the Sprout Pro G2 with a mission to fix these issues and provide a more usable product overall. Like last time, Dutch Sprout reseller De Rekenwinkel kindly supplied me with a review unit to play with for a few weeks. They also updated their dedicated Dutch HP Sprout website for the new model.
The big question of course is: Is this the Sprout everyone has been waiting for? I think it’s pretty close! In this review I’ll show and tell you why. Again, this is not a review about the Sprout G2 in general, but purely about the 3D scanning capabilities of the machine.
The $89 Bevel is Matter and Form’s second product after their foldable desktop 3D Scanner from 2014. The Bevel promises to “turns your smartphone into a 3D Camera”. It was crowdfunded through Kickstarter in the summer of 2015. It was estimated to ship to backers in January 2016 but actually shipped in April 2017.
In on the original Kickstarter page, the manufacturer teases with this example:
This excited a lot of readers of this website. And judging the amount of readers of my 2016 preview post about 3 Affordable Smartphone 3D Scanners it still does. In that post I also wrote about the eora3D which is also a laser-based smartphone scanner that will probably come out this summer but is a fixed desktop (object) scanner while the Bevel is meant to be used hand-held.
Does the Bevel deliver on its promise?
The question of course is: does the Bevel deliver on its promise? I reached out to a reader of my blog that happens to live nearby and was a backer of the product on Kickstarter. He kindly lend me his Bevel for a few weeks so I could play with it. Thanks Victor!
Update 15 June 2017
I’ve published a full in-depth, hand-on Review of the EinScan-SE and EinScan-SP!
Yesterday I attended the grand opening of Shining 3D’s EMEA office in Stuttgart, Germany. With this big step the Chinese company also launched two new desktop structured light scanners. The $1199 EinScan-SE will replace the EinScan-S I reviewed last year while the $2299 EinScan-SP is positioned between the base model and the EinScan-Pro I also reviewed earlier.
HP might be best-known for their printers and computers, but now they’re entering the market of 3D scanning as well. The company started experimenting with this technology back in 2016 when they released the original Sprout all-in-one computer with built-in 3D scanner, which I reviewed a while ago. Recently, they released the Sprout G2, which I’ll review soon.
But while the Sprout line is targeted towards consumers and education, HP took a step into the professional market by acquiring DAVID in 2016. They’ve finished rebranding the product website and software, so it’s the perfect time for an in-depth, hands-on review of what now known as the HP 3D Structured Light Scanner Pro S3 but is better known under its original name: DAVID SLS-3.
I’ll compare this solution to other scanners I’ve reviewed in the past, as well as the Sprout’s internal 3D scanner.
In my CES2017 round-up post I wrote that Artec — the manufacturer of the Space Spider and Eva I just reviewed — announced two new products: The RobotiScan and a new, portable 3D scanner I didn’t yet know the name of.
Now I do — it’s called Leo and it looks like this:
In short: the Leo is an industrial-grade, handheld white light 3D scanner with a built-in battery, screen and computer. In other words: it combines professional quality with the ease-of-use of tablet-mounted depth sensors, like the Structure Sensor.
Not only will I compare the Leo to that entry-level depth sensor, but also to a direct competitor in the form of the Thor3D Drake.
Autodesk ReMake has been discontinued as a standalone on December 1, 2017. The photogrammetry functionality of the application will be moved into Autodesk ReCap Pro as a feature called ReCap Photo.
I have reviewed ReCap Photo as a separate post that explains the differences between it and ReMake — both in in terms of functionality as in operational costs.
In 2016 I’ve mainly reviewed dedicated hardware that can be used for 3D Scanning — or Active Reality Capture, if you will — from entry-level infrared depth sensors like the Structure Sensor and Sense 2 to the professional white light scanners like the EinScan-Pro and Artec Eva. The price difference between those is huge (from less than $500 to way more than $5,000) but more expensive 3D scanners can capture a lot more detail.
But 3D scanner are not the only way to capture reality anymore. Passive Reality Capture technologies, like Photogrammetry, don’t require any special hardware. A camera and a computer will do. Even a smartphone — which is basically a camera and computer in one — can do photogrammetry when combined with Free Apps. That link brings you to one of the most-read posts on this website, because why would you pay for 3D scanning if it can be free?
Those apps, however, have their downsides. That’s why I’m starting a new series of reviews that will cover Professional Photogrammetry Software. First in line is Autodesk ReMake — previously known as Memento — which is available for Windows
and Mac. As you might now, I have reviewed Autodesk ReCap 360 in the past. Or at least, the web-interface (that also works on Android) of that software. As a whole ReCap 360 is actually meant for working with laser scans — from the new (and awesome) Leica BLK360 scanner or others — and mix those with photogrammetry if needed. ReMake is purely meant for photogrammetry and offers a complete set of tools to generate, edit and export 3D scans made from photos.
Autodesk’s goal with ReMake is to make professional Reality Capture simple and affordable. Let’s find out of they have succeeded!
In the last two years, many new 3D scanners have entered the market. From entry-level infrared depth sensors to structured light scanners aimed at professionals. For this review, I’ve been testing the Artec Eva — a handheld 3D scanner that has been around since 2012. But if you think that means it’s outdated hardware, you’re very wrong. In reality, Artec is one of the industry-standard brands of handheld 3D scanners.
The Eva is their “general-purpose” white light scanner that can be used to capture anything from the size of a shoe to that of a car with a point accuracy of up to 0,1mm. For smaller objects or very small details (up to 0.05mm accuracy), Artec offers the Space Spider blue light scanner that can also be used… in space! I’ll review that one soon (on earth, unfortunately).
The Eva is used for many purposes, from quality control to cultural heritage and from rapid prototyping to medical applications. It’s also commonly used to create assets for games and visual effects for movies and TV shows, like the Batman-inspired series Gotham. The scanner was also used to create the very first presidential portrait in 3D of Barack Obama.
My review unit came with a complementary training by Dutch Artec Reseller MiniYours / 3D Scan Solutions, which got me started quickly. I’ve been testing the Eva for about two months.
Let’s dive in!