Technology, as they say, is here to make life easy. 3D technology especially the scanners thus remains a popular technology for easing work technicalities among many professionals. These include the celebrities who may want to incorporate special effects in their movies, architects who want to design or modify construction designs and engineers who want to improve on every design idea they actualize. With 3d technology, these professionals can capture the objects shapes in the form of a 3D file into the computers, allowing for further editing and printing. Thus, to land on the best 3D scan for the best services in your area of specialization, the following guide will offer a step by step advice on what to do and consider as a smart buyer.
Types Of 3D Scanners And How To Buy
3D scanners employ two methods in their scan operation. Namely: contact and non-contact, hence the contact and non-contact scanners. Contact scanners require direct contact with the object during the scan process while the non-contact utilizes either the laser or radiation to collect information on the object in question. 3d scanners are usable with 3D printing. Also, to run their system, the scanners combine the CAD software and the principle of data collection about an environment, object or a person. With a single scan, therefore, you can obtain lots of object information via the reverse engineering process.
Depending on portability and size, scanners exist in three major types namely:
Desktop 3D scanners: these scanners are suitable for scanning small and medium-sized objects. They feature a footprint that allows for fitting on a desktop.
Handheld 3D scanners: these scanners are lightweight hence portable. Their versatility makes them an ideal option for both object and body scans. Due to their small size, they necessitate the use of hands in operation. Also, most handheld 3D scanners are not wireless and require connection to a computer hence restricted mobility.
Industrial 3D scanners: these scanners, unlike the above two are high quality and usable by professionals. They, therefore, feature high precisions, shape and designs for quality output.
In order to classify 3D scanners, an understanding of the technology they employ is important. The technology thus further classifies these scanners as follows:
Laser triangulation: 3D scans under this technology utilize the single laser or laser line to scan objects. The scanner casts the laser. The laser’s light then reflects on the object and its trajectory undergoes modification after which a sensor picks it. This modification combined with the trigonometric triangulation enables the system to decide on the deviation angle. This angle relates to the scanner object distance. Hence, where the scanner captures adequate distances, it maps the surface’s object more easily to generate a scan.
Laser triangulation based scanners feature high accuracy and resolution. Despite this, they experience problems when scanning shiny and transparent surfaces due to their high sensibilities.
Structured light: scanners that embrace this technology employ the trigonometric triangulation technology alone unlike those that use laser triangulation. In this case, the technology relies on some linear pattern sequence that falls on the object in question. The software system then examines each line’s ends and computes the scanner object distance. The structured light is either blue or white and is common in the DLP technology projectors. In most instances, the pattern projected comes in the form of light rays series or random dots in some instances.
When it comes to speed and resolution, the structures light technology takes the lead. This technology is also unique in that it can also scan human beings. Despite these benefits, scans that use this technology are too sensitive to light hence some technicalities when used outside.
Photogrammetry: Photogrammetry as a science entails the use of computerized images and geometrical algorithms to measure photographs and enhance recovery of exact surface point positions. The technology first analyzes photographs from respective photography points and auto detects pixels that correspond to the exact physical location. For this to happen successfully, you need a very powerful computer which you will feed with the camera’s lens distortion and focal length data. The challenge, however, may come where you are dealing with a large number of photographs and want to retain a high accuracy level for each.
Photogrammetry, despite its complication, features high speed and precision. Moreover, through scanning with this technology, you will be able to use different scales to reconstruct your subjects from whichever capture viewpoint. On the other side, however, this technology has a high sensitivity to the input photograph resolutions and uses more time to scan the photos due to the complex algorithms it has to run.
3D scanning on a contact basis: As its name suggests, scans that use this technology utilize physical contact of the object where a probe moves on the object and is able to record information about the object through contact. This element may also attach to a specific point on the object to collect all the information. Some specific 3D scanners that embrace this technology include the Coordinated Measuring Machine, useful in inspecting parts both manually and automatically through software and computers.
Contact based scanners have high precision and are very efficient in shiny and transparent surfaces. However, they perform at low speed and are inefficient with the organic varying shapes.
The laser pulse (Lidar): this technology inclines to the flight of a laser beam. The laser beam undergoes projection where it collects on a sensor. Thus, the time the laser takes to travel gives the geometrical information on the surface in question. This time comprises of the lidar and the shifting phase lasers which are a sub-class of the Lidar 3D scanners.
Laser pulse based scanners are ideal for scanning huge objects and environments. Their disadvantage, however, is their slow pace that requires maximum patience on the user’s end.
Choosing The Best Scanner For Your Lifestyle
Our lifestyles especially in making a purchase decision for the best scanner have a great influence. Since scanners are usable in most career fields, going for the best 3D scanner with the most suitable features is a must to ensure maximum satisfaction from its services. For this reason, the following section highlights some scanner features and the top products to consider for those features to ensure you meet your lifestyle needs. These include:
Fast speed and accuracy: EINSCAN-SP DESKTOP 3D SCANNER: Well if you are up to saving your time, then EINSCAN-SP DESKTOP 3D SCANNER is the ideal choice. This best scanner and also a top brand takes only 4 seconds to scan an object and only one minute for a 360-degree scan in auto mode. Despite the speed, this machine does not compromise on quality. It embraces the structured light technology hence a great reconstruction power, bringing out the objects scan in fine details.
Use efficiency: While we all want technology to serve us efficiently, having a scan that is compatible with other office tools in its line is an added advantage. For this reason, the EinSkan-SP features a 3D printer and allows for API access, making it easy for any user to save, edit and print the scanned objects. EinSkan-SP efficiency is also a result of its automatic software which features an auto calibration with multiple alignment options for high-quality scans. Finally, whether you are an experienced user or newbie, this scan will not let you down as it is easy to set up and use.
On the other hand, if you are up for the task and willing to enjoy more user efficiency features, then the XYZ Printing da Vinci should top your priority. This scanner features a calibration system, described as intuitive, that utilizes detection software and knobs to guide your scan direction. Fitted with an aluminum print, this scanner allows for even heat distribution reducing the warpage instances.
The HE3D Scanner Kit also can serve you right especially for its ease in assembling. Moreover, since its package is a full kit on its own; you can rest assured of no need for extra parts and printer costs once you make your initial cost. This 3D scanner also has free software in its package and its upgradable motherboard thus makes it a convenient scanner to own for future purposes.
Safety features: while other scanners do not emphasize much on their models on their safety, [Open Filament] XYZprinting da Vinci 3D scanner is UL listed. In this respect, as a user, you can use it confidently with the following guarantee:
- Minimum operation risks
- Optimum performance under the right conditions
- Adherence to the regulatory codes and standards
- Adherence to international standards
- Adherence to UL conditions regarding safety
Value for the money: besides being a safe scanner, the XYZprinting da Vinci Mini remains the best 3d scanner for the money for its relatively cheap price compared to the other two scanners. This, however, is not a compromise to its quality. Similar to the other highly ranked scanners, this 3D scanner features a dual-laser scanning technology that ensures the object captured is free from distortion. Moreover, with its automatic imaging, the scan takes only five minutes. The result from this efficient scan is also worth admiration as editing is possible using any scale. The editing additionally is much easier with the built-in software that ensures your prints get unique finishes.
Additional features and uniqueness: while most scanners are likely to yield a common result, the da Vinci is an outstanding brand. This scanner features a laser engraver module useful in engraving your materials to whichever material you want. These include wood, leather, and plastic, making it an excellent scanner.
Special Features When Buying Scanners
As a smart buyer, matching your needs against the scanner is critical to ensure you get the best out of your choice. Thus, you need to factor in the following special features:
Use And Application
First and foremost, you need to distinguish whether you are buying your scanner for professional or personal use. When you want a scanner for professional use, the size, as well as your field of specialization, is a matter to consider. On the other hand, if you want a scanner for personal use, which may be a rare case, then ensure you get the best depending on your usage frequency.
The Object You Want To Scan
The object you intend to scan will dictate greatly the type of scanner you buy. Among the object features you should consider before making your purchase therefore include:
Object distance and dimension: the best 3D scanner scans the object depending on its distance and dimension. Thus, ensure you select a perfect size and shape scanner that matches the object you want to scan.
Object surface: Where you want to capture additional features of an object you are scanning such the texture and color, and then go for quality scans that have these features in place.
Price: Price in most cases gives a smart buyer a clue on the quality of the product at hand. Thus, to ensure you get the best where money is not the problem, start by allocating enough budget for your scanner. However, where you are operating on a very tight budget, then a low-cost scanner, in this case, may be suitable. However, when settling for your decision, ensure you liaise with your dealer to secure the best deal and brand in the market.
Some of the technical specifications to check when purchasing your scanner include:
Speed: a 3D object scanner, however powerful takes more time to scan big objects, unlike a smaller one. This is also the case when scanning human beings. For this reason, therefore, ensure you purchase high-speed scanners where your profession requires big object scanning for maximum work efficiency and high resolution.
Resolution: 3D scanners vary in terms of resolution depending on their model and quality. Thus, if you want to attain high-quality resolution for your scan objects, then going for a quality 3D object scanner will serve you right.
Software: the software your scanner supports is an important element in the performance speed and quality of your scanner. Thus, to ensure maximum performance, consider highly functioning software. Also, constantly upgrade the software to keep up with up to date trends.
FAQS About 3D Scanners
- What is the largest size object that you can scan?
Scanners, as seen above have different sizes and embrace different techniques in their make. Thus, depending on the model you are using, you will be able to scan any size of an object from the small to the very big. The difference, however, is in terms of the precision. With a high-quality scanner, you will be able to attain high precisions for your images.
- How much does it cost to scan?
3D scanning has no solid cost range. The rates are different depending on the frequency as well as the type of equipment in use. Thus, to arrive at an ideal range, you will need contact with your dealer.
3D scanning as a process involves converting physical data into digital data to allow for editing and reconstruction of the object. The scanners capture so many points on the object surface to recreate it from a basic point of view.
- Why should I consider 3D scans above other types of scans?
3D technology is economically efficient hence achieving the economic goal of technology. Moreover, with this advancement, you can access unusable information from a physical object and by injecting it to your CAD make the most out of it to bring out more useful solutions and ideas.
- Who should benefit from 3D scans?
If you want to save up for design and manufacturing, then 3D is the first solution to borrow to ensure this success. With this technology, you will not only utilize information in its useless forms but also provoke your mind to think outside the box and solve the hardest manufacturing problems.
- Will 3D scanning damage my objects?
3D scanners have no records of causing damage to its users as a result of the scan. You can, therefore, rest assured of your objects safety as well as yourself as an individual, be it a full body or just a part to scan.
- How accurate are 3D scans?
Unlike other types of scans, 3D scans are very accurate. This, however, depends on the object size and scanner used. With a high-quality scanner, you expect better accuracy. Usually, with most scanning, the accuracy range is between .001 and .005 with bigger objects hence long-range scanning, the accuracy range level increases.
Finally, as seen above, it is evident that 3D scans are a solution in almost every field. This, therefore, leads us to terms scanners problem solvers for their value to humanity. Besides aiding in recognizing defaults in man, it also helps man to recognize defaults in what surrounds him and act accordingly. These trends, however, will not end here. With the technological trends in scanning, we are likely to start scanning ourselves with our phones, thanks to science. Since scans are very safe, getting the best quality is, therefore, the only remedy to benefit fully from the package. With the above guide, therefore, do not be left out when your friends go for these goodies.