With new 3D printers and 3d printing services popping up every day, it was only a matter of time before 3D scanning would get some attention. Previously it was very expensive and generally only used in industrial applications or high-end video production studios. Now, it is getting the desktop treatment, just as 3D printing did. In the near future, you could simply walk into your office and "photocopy" a sculpture just as easily as you could a piece of paper.
I've listed the price, dimensional accuracy, and scan volume for each of the 3D scanners listed below. You should note however, that each manufacturer could use terms differently. You'll see "resolution," "scan quality," and "detail" listed in some of their documentation. I've tried my best to find measurements that can be compared across the board.
1. MakerBot Digitizer
Scan volume: 8in x 8in
Dimensional accuracy: ± 2.0mm [± 0.079in]
The MakerBot Digitizer was recently announced, bringing some considerable attention to desktop 3D scanning. The unit allows for you to place an object on a rotating table and let the scanner do the rest of the work. What really stands out about the MakerBot Digitizer is the software that comes with it. Makerware is fairly intuitive and allows you to modify and clean the object after it has been scanned.
Scan volume: 12in x 12in
Dimensional accuracy: ±0.1mm on highest setting, ±0.4mm on lowest
Price: roughly $1,400
While the Dimbody may shave a shape similar to the MakerBot Digitizer, it appears to push each specification just a little bit further. It has a larger scan platform and higher-resolution camera. The dimensional accuracy really stands out here, being ±0.1mm compared to the Makerbot's ±2mm. It is roughly the same price as well, depending on where you fall on the Kickstarter funding.
Keep reading to see the next three desktop 3D scanners...