3D printing and scanning has become a standard practice in many industries, from the healthcare sector to the auto sector and beyond. It’s even moved into the home, where freelance artists, animators, and hobbyists are doing amazing things with their 3D scanners and printers.
No matter what you’re using it for, you want a top-of-the-line 3D scanner for all your 3D scanning needs. With so many options on the market to choose from, here are six of the best 3D scanners you can buy today to help you narrow down your options and get scanning today.
The first thing you think of when considering a 3D scanner isn’t an Xbox Kinect sensor, but it’s a better option than you might think.
While not made specifically to be a 3D scanner, software exists that allows the user to hook their Kinect up to a PC and turn it into a pretty great 3D scanner. Using a Kinect might not give you all the features of a more high-end 3D scanner, but if you’re looking for a more affordable option, this will definitely get the job done. It’s pretty easy to find cheap second-hand Kinect’s, often in great condition, so you have nothing to lose.
You’re not going to get the highest quality out of the Kinect, but for beginners or those looking for a cheap 3d scanner, a Kinect is a great option.
XYZprinting is a trusted company in the 3D printing market, with a wide range of devices. Their latest XYZprinting Scanner 2.0 is compact and sleek but capable of fantastic 3D scanning.
This scanner runs on Intel Realsense technology, highly praised for its features and advanced capabilities. It has an operating range of 25-60 cm, and a wide scanning distance of 20-120 cm, allowing you to scan objects both large and small with ease. Scanner 2.0 is a big step up from XYZprinting’s last model, so if you’re already a fan of XYZprinting’s products it’s worth considering the upgrade.
The XYZprinting Scanner 2.0 is also one of the cheaper options out there. Combine this with XYZprinting’s post-editing software, and you’ve got a pretty great deal on your hands.
The Matter and Form V2 3D Scanner is a fast and compact 3D desktop scanner perfect for scanning smaller objects. It can scan objects up to 9.8 tall and 7 in diameter, with a maximum weight of 6.6 lbs. The Matter and Form V2 boasts scan times as low as 8 minutes, with the option to upgrade to +Quickscan if you’re using MFStudio software, allowing for full scans in only 65 seconds.
The scanner folds into a compact, protective package to help keep your desk clutterless. It’s perfect for artists, researchers, students, and educators alike who have a lot of scanning to do. If you want a scanner that’s fast, small, and reliable, consider the Matter and Form V2.
The Artec Eva is one of the best selling 3D scanners on the market for a reason. It can capture almost any object with great accuracy and quality, including shiny textures and the deepest blacks you can get. The Artec Eva boasts accuracy up to 0.1mm, something a lot of other scanners simply can’t get away with.
This beautiful handheld scanner is used across a wide range of industries, from automotive to aerospace, to medicine and prosthetics. Fun fact: the Artec Eva was used to scan Barack Obama, allowing for the first 3D portrait of an American President ever. If it’s good enough for Obama, it’s probably a good choice.
With the Artec Eva you’re sure to get the highest quality scans without the need for target points or calibration. Plug it in, point it around the object you want to scan, and you’re in business.
The Artec Eva typically comes at a high price, so it might not be a realistic choice for some, but if you’re looking for a great scanner for your company, you can’t go wrong.
Occipital’s Structure Sensor is one of the most lightweight, small 3D scanners out there, but don’t let that fool you. This scanner is no slacker. It’s able to hook right onto your tablet like a webcam, allowing for great mobility and range when scanning anything.
You can scan objects of any size, from a human being to an entire room if you so desire. It supports USB-C and lighting connectors and looks sleek attached to the back of an iPad. Plus, it’s on the cheaper end of the spectrum, making it one of the more versatile options at that price range.
With the Structure Sensor, you can scan objects anywhere you go without restriction. Want to get a quick scan of a statue you like around your city? The Structure sensor has you covered, with models available for all models of iPad.
The Digitizer from MakerBot is a desktop scanner that won’t disappoint. It can scan any object up to 8 tall in minutes. It’s incredibly easy to use, and in combination with the MakerBot software and printers works like an absolute charm.
The MakerBot Digitizer is also compatible with 3rd party modeling programs, making it flexible if you’re not used to the MakerBot software. It has a 1.3 megapixel CMOS camera, and a 0.5mm resolution, rivaling many scanners at the same price point. Whether you’re a Mac, PC, or Linux user, the Digitizer has you covered every step of the way.
There are a lot of great options out there for the perfect 3D scanner, and the last thing you want is a sub-par piece of hardware. If you want a great 3D scanner, go with any of the options above. You’ll be creating amazing, detailed structures in no time!
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