3D scanner for sale

10 Best Cheap 3D Scanners in 2022 (That Work Well)

So you’re interested in getting into 3D scanning? First thing you’ll need: a 3D scanner. You could also make your own DIY 3D scanner, but this requires time, effort and skill, and many would prefer to buy their own affordable 3D scanner online and save the hassle.

But, you also don’t want to break the bank.

You don’t need a $20,000 professional piece of kit designed for precise prototypes and industry, you just want an easy-to-use, accurate and affordable 3D scanner you can use to scan your favorite miniatures and other fun designs, or even to scan you and your friends/family’s faces to 3D print them!

So, we’ve put together the absolute top picks for low-cost 3D scanners that still work great, from the lowest price range of $150 (though you have to build most of it yourself), to the $500-ish price range we recommend to get a good quality scanner – our Revopoint POP scanner is this price and we’re very happy with it – and also some more premium options for precise detail scanning.

What Makes a Good Cheap 3D Scanner?

  • Price-performance ratio — offering bang for their buck
  • Accuracy and resolution
  • Versatility — are they portable, and can they be used both handheld and stationary?
  • Ease of use — from simple setup, to software compatibility


Revopoint POP

Has a grip for holding it to scan people/bodies, and turnstile and stationary object scanning

0.3mm accuracy and 8fps scanning

Available at:

Revopoint here


Matter & Form V2

Accurate 0.1mm scan quality

Powerful stationary scanner for intricate 25x18cm objects

Comes with Mfstudio scan software

Available at:

Amazon hereDynamism here


Shining 3D EinScan SE

“Cheapest professional-level 3D scanner”

Scans 70x70x70cm objects to 0. 1mm scan accuracy and can rotate objects

Available at:

Amazon hereDynamism here

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Name and brandType of 3D scannerPriceBest price available at:
Revopoint POPStationary/Handheld$500Revopoint 3D here
BQ CiclopLaser triangulationaround $165Amazon here
XYZ 1.0 ProLow cost handheld 3D scanner$445Amazon here
Revopoint POP 2Stationary/Handheld/Color$699Revopoint 3D here
Sol 3D scannerLaser triangulation$799Amazon here
Matter & Form V2Desktop 3D scanner$749Amazon here
Shining 3D Einscan SEStationary 3D scanner$1,199Amazon here
Scantech iReal 2EHandheld 3D scanner$3,980Scantech site
Shining 3D Einscan SPStationary 3D scanner$2,599Amazon here

Cheap 3D Scanners Under $500

Revopoint POP – Best Cheap 3D Scanner

  • Price: around $500 — Available at Revopoint store here
  • Resolution: 0. 3 mm
  • Max Scan Volume: 210 x 130 mm
  • Technology: Structured light & infrared scanning
  • Speed/Frame Rate: 8fps

The Revopoint POP is one of the best low-cost 3D scanners around, with a single frame accuracy of up to 0.3mm, and the versatility to be used portably to scan faces, bodies and animals, as well as a stationary scanner for sculptures, prototypes and other objects.

Weighing just 200g, it’s portable and light, and can easily fit into any backpack or transporting equipment you have.

Whether you use iOS or Android, MacOS or Windows, it’s compatible with your smartphone, tablet or laptop, and connects seamlessly via USB to scan and export — and can export in STL, OBJ or PLY file formats. It comes with cables to connect to PC or Mac, as well as a portable stick that connects to your smartphone for previewing your scans in handheld mode.

For scanning faces, the infrared sensors (similar to more expensive 3D scanners like the Einscan H) makes for a zero-glare solution that doesn’t hurt your eyes, and helps with scanning darker features (though dark hair will still be a problem).  

The entire kit includes a smartphone rig, mount and grip, LED light to support scanning, mini tripod, and a turntable for scanning stationary objects. Revopoint bundle the POP 3D scanner with their own software for editing and optimizing your scans, including multiple continuous splicing, making it a great all-around affordable 3D scanner workflow.

Read more: Revopoint POP 2 3D scanner review

BQ Ciclop — Great Cheap 3D Scanner Under $200

  • Resolution: 0.5mm
  • Price: around $150 — Available on Amazon here
  • Scan time: 2-8 mins
  • Maximum scan volume: 200 x 200 x 205 mm

Most 3D printing experts will know of BQ’s 3D printer range. In addition to their printers, BQ also designed the Ciclop, an affordable 3D scanner that’s completely open-source. You can either build it yourself at home if you prefer a DIY project, or buy it pre-assembled online.

This nifty budget 3D scanner has a good scanning volume — up to 250 x 205 mm — so it’s no slouch for the price. It utilizes laser triangulation technology, so you don’t need to hold the scanner and move it around the object.

And since it’s open-source, you can modify it however you want — following the RepRap 3D printer philosophy. It’s a great cheap laser scanner, and one of the best value 3D scanners out there.

In terms of specs, it’s actually very good for the price — with resolutions between 0.3-0.5mm. You can easily scan to a free 3D software tool (the BQ Ciclop comes with Horus) via Bluetooth or USB, though experienced makers may prefer to work in a more professional 3D software package.

Overall, the BQ Ciclop is a plucky, low-cost 3D scanner that’s great for new makers looking to get 3D scanning. One drawback is that it isn’t the easiest 3D scanner to assemble, so less experienced DIY-ers may opt to buy it pre-assembled online.

XYZprinting Handheld 2.

  • Price – Check price on Amazon here
  • Resolution: 0.2 mm – 1.5 mm
  • Max Scan Volume: 100 x 100 x 200 cm
  • Technology: Stereo imaging
  • Speed/Frame Rate: 40 fps

Building on the success of its first low-cost 3D scanner, XYZ is back with the new XYZprinting 3D Scanner 2.0, promising, rather grandly, 3D scanning for a new frontier. Much of the focus here is on wiping out the reliability issues of the original while also increasing the resolution substantially.

Powered by an Intel RealSense module, the XYZprinting 3D Scanner 2.0 leans on portability, fast scanning, and greater detail as its chief attributes. It employs two cameras equipped with stereo imaging technology to measure the depth, shape, and size of objects.

Housed in a light and compact shell (itself designed to fit comfortably in the hand or clip onto a laptop or PC screen) weighing a feathery 382 g are some impressive specifications. It features full-color scanning at up to 1920 x 1080p at 40 FPS and 640 x 480 at 30 FPS depth imaging. 

Resolution sits at a decent 0.2 mm to 1.5 mm, far better than the original’s 1.0 to 2.5 mm. It has a 25-60 cm operating range and a scanning distance of 20-120 cm. Alongside it boasts a max scan size of 100 x 100 x 200 cm for quick scanning of relatively large objects or bodies.

Firing up the XYZprinting 3D Scanner 2.0 gives you three modes: one tuned to capture objects, one optimized for headshots and portraits, and the last designed for full-body scans. Scanning is the usual process of capturing an object from multiple angles. The scanner then creates a digital mesh model replica, exportable to STL, OBJ, PLY, and FBX file formats.

Overall, the XYZprinting Handheld 2.0 punches above its price point and is a sound investment for those that need an affordable 3D scanner. The only negative is that the scanner is tethered to a USB cable, which detracts a little from its overall portability as you’ll always need a computer to scan objects.

Low Cost 3D Scanners ($500+)

Revopoint POP 2 – Best Under $1000

  • Price: $699 — Available at Revopoint Official store here
  • Precision: 0.05 mm
  • Scan Speed: 10 FPS
  • Minimum Scan Volume: 20 x 20 x 20 mm
  • Single Capture Range: 210 x 130 mm
  • Working Distance: 150 – 400 mm
  • Point Cloud Distance / Single-Frame Accuracy: 0.15 mm

We already feature the Revopoint POP on our affordable 3D scanner review, but the newer upgraded version, the POP 2, improves in almost every area.

It’s one of the best, if not the best 3D scanner under a thousand dollars, and works superbly for stationary scanning (it comes with a movable turntable to scan all sides), handheld scanning of objects, faces, bodies and more, as well as accurate color scanning.Scanning a toy with the Revopoint POP 2 using the “fill holes” setting (often leave it off and sort any errors in post). However, you can’t scan black or shiny features unless you spray them to become visible to the camera.

If budget is important, then the standard POP is fine. But, if you want that extra quality, the POP 2 offers up to 0.05mm precision (vs 0.3mm for the POP), a faster 10fps scan speed (vs 8fps on the POP), and it can scan smaller parts, starting at 20mm³ vs the original POP’s 30mm³.During our test and review, the calibration showed an accuracy of around 0.07mm.

It scanned color images well when we tested it on some kids toys and a multi-color Rubik’s cube, and scanned faces accurately (but don’t select the “fill holes” setting as it will create deformed faces by creating a mesh cloud that includes background noise).

Overall, it’s probably the best cheap 3D scanners around – standard scanning, face scanning, color, or entire body scanning, it’s good for all uses.Color scanning and editing test.

Read the full review: Revopoint POP 2 hands-on test and review

Compare: Revopoint POP vs POP 2 and MINI

Sol 3D scanner — Low cost laser scanner

  • Price: $799 — Available on Amazon here
  • Resolution: up to 0. 1 mm
  • Scan volume: up to 170 x 170 mm
  • Scan speed: 10 min in Turbo mode, 20 min normally

Costing under $1,000, the Sol 3D scanner is an affordable laser scanner capable of scanning small and medium-sized objects with strong accuracy. For small parts or objects, it has a specialized Near Mode option, and for larger objects, you can use Far Mode.

Specialized 3D scanning software comes with the Sol scanner, easily enabling you to export object scans in either STL or any other file formats, for either 3D printing in a 3D slicer, or importing into a 3D CAD software tool for editing and optimizing.

The scanner is positioned towards hobbyists as well as entrepreneurs looking to expand their product range presentation.

With Facebook now letting anyone upload 360-degree images of their products that customers and fans can view, it has never been more important to have 3D scans of your best-sellers, with the Sol perfectly suited for this.

Overall, it’s a great low cost 3D scanner for effective scanning of small and medium objects.

Matter & Form V2 3D Scanner

  • Price: $749 — Available on Amazon worldwide here / Available on Matterhackers here
  • Scan volume: 250 x 180 mm
  • Accuracy: within 0.1 mm
  • Scan speed: up to 65 seconds
The Matter and Form scanner is ideal for stationary objects, such as this vase.

Featuring very accurate scanning at up to 0.1mm due to its 2 lasers and HD-CMOS sensor, the Matter & Form V2 is up there as the most precise cheap 3D scanner under $1,000.

Like many of these desktop 3D scanners, the Matter & Form comes with its own 3D software tool for editing and transferring files, and comes with Mfstudio and Quickscan for fast 65-second scanning.

If you’re looking to 3D print your scans, you can seamlessly import them into your 3D printer software and either print remotely via WiFi, or slice and export to a USB or SD card.

The only thing that may rule it out for some people is its relatively small maximum scanning size. Because it sits stationary when scanning, it can only scan objects that fit on its scanning platform (up to 25cm tall and 18cm diameter), so those who plan on scanning people or larger objects will prefer a handheld scanner instead.

Apart from that, it’s a fantastic, very precise 3D scanner perfect for scanning intricate, small objects.

Shining 3D EinScan-SE — Best value 3D scanner

  • Price: $1,199 — Available on Amazon worldwide here / Available on Dynamism Store here
  • Scan accuracy: a single shot is within 0.1 mm
  • Scan range: single scan – 200 x 150 mm / maximum scan range – 700 x 700 mm
  • Scan speed: a single shot under 8 seconds

Proclaimed the “cheapest professional level 3D scanner” by Shining 3D, their EinScan SE model is their entry-level 3D scanner. Some of their other scanners, for example the Einscan Pro 2X can cost upwards of $7,000, though just because it’s their cheapest scanner doesn’t mean the EinScan SE isn’t impressive.

It can scan up to 70 x 70 x 70 cm, which should be enough for your printing needs unless you’re scanning entire cars, or people. Moreover, it’s accurate to 0.1mm so scan quality will absolutely not be a problem.

You can either have the object being scanned rotate, or do so yourself, the EinScan-SE supports a variety of options. Overall, it’s impressive for the price and a very strong 3D scanner.

iPhone With LiDAR Scanner

  • Price: Check price on Amazon here
  • Technology: LiDAR sensor
  • Compatible Devices: iPhone 13 Pro Max, iPhone 13 Pro, iPhone 12 Pro Max, iPhone 12 Pro, iPad Pro

You may already have one of the best cheap 3D scanners in your pocket right now – an iPhone. The latest additions to Apple’s iPhone lineup, namely the iPhone 12 and 13 Pro family, along with the iPad Pro, feature a LiDAR sensor integrated into the camera assembly.

Light Detection And Ranging, or in simple terms, 3D laser scanning, beams light onto an object and then measures the time it takes for the light to reach back to the sensor to capture the size, shape, and other characteristics. It does not just scan objects but also 3D spaces.

The sensor is chiefly equipped to boost the iPhone’s ability to capture crisp and clear images in less than ideal light conditions, but when paired with an appropriate app becomes a decent 3D scanner. The results aren’t quite on par with what you’d get with a dedicated 3D scanner, but they aren’t half bad for a device with a cheap LiDAR scanner you likely already own.

A growing number of apps make full use of the iPhone LiDAR sensor to scan and create 3D models, ready for export in various popular formats, which you can then edit in CAD software. Apps like Canvas, 3D Scanner, and Polycam are excellent starting points. Most are free, too, meaning you can 3D scan for no extra cost if you’re already the owner of one of the latest iPhones.

iReal 2E color 3D scanner

  • Price: $3,980 – More info at Scantech store here
  • Resolution: up to 0.2 mm
  • Accuracy: up to 0. 1 mm
  • Weight: 850g

While not as cheap as some other options, Scantech’s iReal 2E is one of the most cost-effective professional handheld color 3D scanners on the market, capable of extraordinary accuracy and precise 3D object scans.

It’s specially designed for 3D scanning medium and large objects and human body scanning, equipped with four scanning modes: features, texture, markers, and mixed, giving you great flexibility for scanning different types of objects.

It features a large 580 x 550 mm field of view making it easy for beginners to operate, and a long 280 – 1000 mm scanning distance, ideal for larger items that lower-cost 3D scanners simply can’t manage.

Additionally, the iReal 2E color 3D scanner adopts infrared structured light technologies, with key advantages across invisible light scanning, environment/material adaptability (such as performing well on human hair, dark objects or under strong sunlight), and so many more.

Above all, if you are looking for a reasonably priced 3D scanner that can handle professional applications, this could be perfect for you.

It’s powerful and with the scanning modes and large field of view, it’s also very versatile. The iReal 2E is particularly useful for:

  • Human body modeling — customization and re-creation of artistic portraits, film, video, game, VR, AR and other CG character modeling, medical rehabilitation, human body parts customization
  • Art and design — medium and large-sized sculptures, cultural relics, college art training, clothing design, creative design, and derivative product development, etc
  • Reverse engineering — castings, forgings, sanitary ware and other products with low precision requirements
  • 3D printing

Shining 3D EinScan-SP

  • Price: $2,599 — Available on Amazon worldwide here / Available on Dynamism Store here
  • Scan range: single scan – 200 x 150 mm / max scan range – 1200mm³
  • Accuracy: single-shot accuracy under 0. 05 mm
  • Speed: single shot speed of under 4 seconds

Having included the EinScan-SE, we had to also include its bigger brother, the EinScan-SP, as they’re both such standout 3D scanners. It’s not as cheap, and in fact, $2,500 is a lot of money, but compared to some industrial 3D scanners that can cost $50,000 plus, it’s comparatively inexpensive!

Whereas the EinScan-SE is accurate to 0.1mm, the SP is accurate to 0.05mm, an astonishing level of precision. This will result in clean, accurate and crisp 3D scans that can in turn be made into stunning 3D prints.

Additionally, it can scan larger objects, up to 120 x 120 x 120 cm, so unless you need to scan entire rooms or cars, you should definitely have enough space with the EinScan-SP.

What Makes A Good Cheap 3D Scanner – Buyer’s Guide


A handheld and portable cheap 3D scanner allows for more freedom of movement to capture scans of all shapes and sizes, even those located in hard-to-reach places. Better yet, a scanner that works in both stationary and handheld modes offers the best of both worlds. Furthermore, portability usually means lightweight, making scanning more manageable and less of a strain when capturing an object from multiple angles.


Resolution determines the quality of the 3D model obtained after scanning an object. Around 1 mm to 2 mm is a good starting point, but go lower if possible; ideally, about 0.3 mm to 0.5 mm to give you the best possible results on a budget. You’ll find cheap 3D scanners like the Matter & Form V2 3D Scanner drop to as low as 0.1 mm, but these tend to carry a higher price tag.

Scan Volume

This determines the size of the maximum scannable area you can capture in one go. Lean towards cheap 3D scanners with large scan volumes if you plan to make full-body scans as these reduce the number of angles you’ll need for a complete scan.

Ease of Use

Though the technology behind 3D scanners is relatively complex, the actual scanning process doesn’t have to be. Look for scanners with one-touch scanning, multiple optimized modes, and user-friendly accompanying software.

Export File Formats

A good cheap 3D scanner needs to offer the ability to export scans to file formats that will be useful to you and compatible with CAD software. STL, OBJ, and PLY are generally available on most budget 3D scanners but check beforehand if you need a less standard format.

What You Can Do With a Cheap 3D Scanner – Uses and Applications

  • Education and Schools – For developing 3D CAD modeling skills, design lessons, and general STEM education.
  • 3D Printing – Scan real-world objects and convert them into 3D printed objects. Especially useful for those that don’t want to create 3D models from scratch in CAD software.
  • Design – Rough, rapid prototypes based on real-world objects.
  • 3D Room Scans – Renovation, digital real estate house viewings, interior design.
  • AR and Animation – game development, app development, digital art.


Which Is the Best Cheap 3D Scanner?

Revopoint POP is one of the most versatile cheap 3D scanners, thanks to both stationary and handheld modes, along with the tripod and turntable that ships alongside the scanner.

Among the best cheap stationary 3D scanners for objects, the Matter & Form V2 3D Scanner is a solid option offering high-quality scans thanks to an excellent 0.1 mm accuracy and fast scan speeds.

If you’re looking for pure value and the lowest price, nothing beats the cost-effective offering of the BQ Ciclop.

Lastly, if you need a scanner capable of higher quality results, the Shining 3D EinScan-SE is a value-packed professional 3D scanner at a mid-range price.

Who Makes the Best Low-Cost 3D Scanners? 

Shining 3D is among the best 3D scanner manufacturers, as exemplified by the excellent EinScan-SE. If we drop in price, Revopoint’s versatile POP 3D scanner is largely unmatched when it comes to bundling a broad range of scan options into a lightweight, compact, and affordable device. Also worthy of mention is XYZprinting and their 3D scanner range, notably the refreshed and updated XYZprinting Handheld 2.0, which offers excellent resolution at a great price.

Other articles you may be interested in:

  • Professional 3D scanners buyer’s guide
  • DIY 3D scanner kits you can build at home
  • The best 3D scanners – ranked
  • Top 3D scanner apps (for iOS and Android)

Best 3D scanner 2022 - Expert selections for every need

What is the best 3D scanner?

Many different types of 3D scanners exist, from desktop 3D scanners to handheld 3D scanners and advanced metrology systems. 3D scanners serve an extremely wide range of applications, from reverse engineering to 3D body scanning or even forensic investigations.

However, given the low number of reliable 3D scanner reviews, it can be challenging to find the best 3D scanner. It can also be complex to know what kind of 3D scanner to get based on your application. A $2,000 3D scanner won’t be sufficient for part inspection, and a $60,000 3D scanner would be overkill if you don’t need the precision.

With that in mind, our goal is to offer an overview of the best 3D scanners in different categories. We broke down our best 3D scanner picks into actionable selections:

  • Professional: A mix of the best desktop and handheld options for professionals
  • Affordable: Entry-level 3D scanners for makers with prices starting at around $400
  • Metrology: High-precision 3D scanners for demanding use cases
  • Handheld: Portative devices that can access hard-to-reach places
  • SLAM and iMMS: Mobile laser 3D scanners for BIM and other large-scale applications
  • TLS: Terrestrial LiDAR scanners
  • Dental (desktop): Stationary 3D scanners for the dental labs
  • Jewelry: Closed, high-precision 3D scanners for jewelers
  • 3D body scanners: Booths and handheld color 3D scanners

Note that there can be some overlap between categories. For example, some handheld 3D scanners are precise enough for metrology or can capture colors and work for 3D body scanning.

Tip: Use the table of contents to the top left of your screen to easily navigate between our selections.

We also run through different 3D scanning applications (reverse engineering, 3D inspection, architecture, etc.) and provide concise explanations of the various 3D scanning technologies that exist.

Professional 3D scanner selection

This category groups some of the best professional 3D scanners. Our selection spans a wide price spectrum and includes both desktop scanners and handheld 3D scanners. These 3D scanners can cover most professional use cases.


Approximate starting prices based on supplier-provided information and public data. Prices may vary by region, over time and do not include additional products or services (taxes, shipping, accessories, training, installation, …).


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iReal 2E 0.1 mm0.003937 inChina$ 3,9803 980 €3,530 £593,243 ¥Quote
Shining 3D

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EinScan H 0.1 mm0.003937 inChina$ 4,9994 999 €4,434 £745,131 ¥Quote
Shining 3D

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EinScan HX

This product has been reviewed by our team.

0.04 mm0.001575 inChina$ 12,00012 000 €10,644 £1,788,672 ¥Quote
MeditSolutionix C500 0.01 mm0.000394 inSouth Korea$ 40,00036 500 €35,482 £5,962,240 ¥Quote

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This product has been reviewed by our team.

0.025 mm0.000984 inCanada$ 65,00057 000 €57,658 £9,688,640 ¥Quote

This product has been reviewed by our team.

Germany upon requestQuote

This product has been reviewed by our team.

Germany upon requestQuote

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This product has been reviewed by our team.

0.02 mm0.000787 inChina upon requestContact

Expand to see more specs

The products in the table are ranked by price (low to high).


Approximate starting prices based on supplier-provided information and public data. Prices may vary by region, over time and do not include additional products or services (taxes, shipping, accessories, training, installation, …).


This brand is a certified partner from our network.

iReal 2EStructured lightMobile > HandheldChina$ 3,9803 980 €3,530 £593,243 ¥Get a quote
Shining 3D

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EinScan HHybridMobile > HandheldChina$ 4,9994 999 €4,434 £745,131 ¥Get a quote
Shining 3D

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EinScan HX

This product has been reviewed by our team.

Structured lightMobile > HandheldChina$ 12,00012 000 €10,644 £1,788,672 ¥Get a quote
MeditSolutionix C500Structured lightStationary > DesktopSouth Korea$ 40,00036 500 €35,482 £5,962,240 ¥Get a quote

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This product has been reviewed by our team.

Laser triangulationMobile > HandheldCanada$ 65,00057 000 €57,658 £9,688,640 ¥Get a quote

This product has been reviewed by our team.

Structured lightStationary > IndustrialGermany upon requestGet a quote

This product has been reviewed by our team.

Structured lightStationary > DesktopGermany upon requestGet a quote

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This product has been reviewed by our team.

Laser triangulationMobile > HandheldChina upon requestContact manufacturer

Overview of the best professional 3D scanners

The iReal 2E is another versatile 3D scanning option in the entry-level price range. It uses VCEL structured light to capture medium- to large-sized objects. Like infrared light, VCEL light is invisible to the human eye and is therefore also particularly adapted to face and body 3D scanning.

Scantech has reported diverse use cases for the iReal 2E 3D scanner, namely in forensic investigations, healthcare, and even culture preservation. In the latter, Scantech’s customer 3D scanned a woman performing different Tai Chi movements– an interesting and uncommon application!

Contact manufacturer Get a quote Add to comparison

The EinScan H was launched alongside the EinScan HX in September 2020. It uses a combination of structured LED light and infrared light, with a built-in color camera for texture acquisition.

This 3D scanner can therefore serve a range of applications involving color capture, with uses in retail, art preservation, healthcare, and more. Furthermore, its infrared light is eye-safe and won’t blind users during a face or body scan.

Shining 3D’s versatile EinScan H is a great entry-level deal for most basic use cases, and its software is getting more intuitive by the update.

Contact manufacturer Get a quote Add to comparison

The EinScan HX features hybrid technology: it has both structured LED light and laser triangulation capabilities, an industry-first from Shining 3D. Each technology is accessible through a specific mode that the user chooses at the beginning of a 3D scanning process.

After reviewing the HX, we found that it is a powerful and versatile product, capable of 3D scanning parts of various properties (sizes, colors, textures). It has a nice and sturdy finish and is easy to manipulate. In addition, the little weight it has is very well distributed to offer an ergonomic balance.

In this price range and at this level of performance, the EinScan HX is unrivaled.

Read the full review: Shining 3D EinScan HX review

Contact manufacturer Get a quote Add to comparison

The SIMSCAN is extremely lightweight for a handheld 3D scanner, weighing only 570 grams. It’s also very compact– the absolute smallest in its class– with dimensions of 203 x 80 x 44 millimeters. Scantech earned a Red Dot Design Award in 2021 for the SIMSCAN’s disruptive design.

After using the SIMSCAN to 3D scan various types of parts, we can confirm it’s an excellent product that feels, looks, and works great. With a price of around €25,000, the SIMSCAN’s price-to-performance is outstanding. The only blemish lies in the software, but it receives updates regularly and you can export your scans to your preferred suite.

Read the full review: Scantech SIMSCAN review

Contact manufacturer Get a quote Add to comparison

The BLACK Elite tops out Creaform’s flagship HandySCAN range, which we have reviewed several times over the years. It delivers a powerful performance that reminds us of the Metrascan 750, but without all the hurdles (complex setup, number of parts and accessories, and large footprint).

Creaform’s HandySCAN BLACK Elite boasts a clean, robust finish. Everything exudes quality and rigor, the attention to detail is similar to the feeling that Apple products give off. It’s no wonder this scanner received a Red Dot Design Award (2019).

Read the full review: HandySCAN BLACK Elite review

Contact manufacturer Get a quote Add to comparison

With a starting price of around €20,000, the GOM Scan 1 is GOM’s most entry-level, metrology-grade solution. We visited GOM’s Benelux HQ to review the scanner in early 2022, and were not disappointed.

The offer? GOM quality and performance at an affordable price. It is on par with high-end metrology 3D scanners and is quite fast at 6,000,000 points per scan. The GOM Scan 1 also benefits from the same, powerful GOM Inspect software as its more premium counterparts.

It is a small, lightweight, and precise machine packed with very serious capabilities.

Read the full review: GOM Scan 1 review

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The ATOS Q is part of GOM’s ATOS lineup, a range of industrial-grade optical metrology solutions. It is aimed at industrial users looking for a powerful and flexible metrology solution at a reasonable price.

One of the ATOS Q’s key selling points is the fact that it can be easily moved along an assembly line or from one site to another. It can’t be qualified as “portable”, but is without a doubt “transportable”.

The scanner also offers a lot of flexibility in part type and size thanks to its multiple lenses and is able to acquire difficult surfaces thanks to its blue light equalizer.

Read the full review: GOM ATOS Q review

Contact manufacturer Get a quote Add to comparison

Solutionix is part of the larger, South-Korean Medit group, and is known for its high-precision dental 3D scanners. Their C500 is able to scan larger objects while benefitting from the same, excellent precision and resolution. Its automatic turntable not only turns but also tilts, providing very thorough scans.

While the Solutionix C500 is sensitive to dark and shiny surfaces, it offers very clean data and high resolution when such surfaces are matted with special spray (like AESUB). The C500 comes with four different sets of lenses for varying fields of view, resolution, and accuracy. Its smallest lens set gives an accuracy of 10 microns and a resolution of just 28 microns (point-to-point distance).

The C500 is particularly adapted to small parts, but can be mounted onto a tripod for the occasional large scan.

Contact manufacturer Get a quote Add to comparison

Affordable 3D scanners for makers

This selection includes some of the best affordable 3D scanners for makers.


Approximate starting prices based on supplier-provided information and public data. Prices may vary by region, over time and do not include additional products or services (taxes, shipping, accessories, training, installation, …).

Scan DimensionSOL Denmark$ 599609 €531 £89,285 ¥Buy
RevopointPOP 2 0.1 mm0.003937 inChina$ 699711 €620 £104,190 ¥Buy
CrealityCR-SCAN 1 0. 1 mm0.003937 inChina$ 700700 €621 £104,339 ¥Contact
Matter and FormScanner V2 0.1 mm0.003937 inUnited States$ 749761 €664 £111,643 ¥Buy
Shining 3D

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EinScan-SE (Elite) 0.1 mm0.003937 in$ 1,1991 219 €1,064 £178,718 ¥Contact

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The products in the table are ranked by price (low to high).


Approximate starting prices based on supplier-provided information and public data. Prices may vary by region, over time and do not include additional products or services (taxes, shipping, accessories, training, installation, …).

Scan DimensionSOLLaser triangulationDenmark$ 599609 €531 £89,285 ¥Buy on Amazon France
RevopointPOP 2Structured lightChina$ 699711 €620 £104,190 ¥Buy on Revopoint
CrealityCR-SCAN 1Structured lightChina$ 700700 €621 £104,339 ¥Contact manufacturer
Matter and FormScanner V2Laser triangulationUnited States$ 749761 €664 £111,643 ¥Buy on Amazon US
Shining 3D

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EinScan-SE (Elite)Structured light$ 1,1991 219 €1,064 £178,718 ¥Contact manufacturer

Overview of the best affordable 3D scanner options

Revopoint launched the POP 2 towards the end of 2021 after a successful Kickstarter campaign with the original POP. We reviewed the original POP shortly before this release, and it seems that some of the quacks (mainly software-related) we encountered have since been worked out. Their new software features a calibration process and a new “Wi-Fi host” mode.

The POP 2 is an interesting option for makers or beginners looking to learn more about 3D scanning. We wouldn’t particularly recommend it for professional use cases, though it can get the job done if you don’t need high resolution.

The Revopoint POP 2 can be used on a small tripod or as a handheld device, and is able to capture colors.

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The EinScan-SE is a powerful entry-level desktop 3D scanner designed to capture small- to medium-sized objects in 3D. Launched back in 2017, it’s still relevant today as an affordable, professional-grade option.

It is based on white structured light technology and offers two 3D capture modes: Fixed Scan and Auto Scan (with a rotating table). The Shining 3D EinScan-SE is a versatile and fast 3D scanner, suitable for a wide range of applications and designed with 3D printing applications in mind.

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This affordable desktop 3D scanner is geared towards hobbyists and tech enthusiasts. The SOL 3D scanner is equipped with an automatic turntable to complement its hybrid 3D scanning technology (a combination of structured light and laser triangulation).

Scan Dimension notes that this 3D scanner is easy to use, thanks to a simplified app that lets users avoid complex calibration and software manipulation.

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The CR-SCAN 1 is another 3D scanner under $1,000. It can be used on a tripod as well as in handheld mode. According to Creality, the use of markers is unnecessary thanks to their AI-based alignment algorithm.

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Matter and Form has been producing affordable desktop 3D scanners since 2014. The 3D Scanner V2 (a.k.a. MFS1V2) is, as its naming suggests, the second version of their flagship product, the Matter and Form MFS1V1 3D scanner.

It boasts a great price-to-performance ratio and is able to quickly scan 3D objects while displaying results in real time. Matter and Form also manufactures the Bevel dongle for use with 3D scanning smartphone apps.

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Metrology 3D scanner selection

3D metrology is the process of acquiring highly accurate physical 3D measurements of an object. The result is a digital 3D model that users can analyze or retro-engineer.

Take quality inspection, for example. Professionals can compare the 3D scan to a reference CAD model to make sure the object respects established norms and standards. 3D metrology helps ensure product quality while saving time and, thus, lowering costs.

Handheld 3D scanner selection

Handheld 3D scanners have been gaining a lot of popularity over the past few years. They offer various benefits over other types of 3D scanners:

  • Ability to access hard-to-reach places
  • Relative ease of use
  • Portability

Their versatility makes them suitable for a wide range of industries, including automobile, aerospace, engineering, and design, and some can even be used for 3D body scanning.

SLAM 3D scanner selection

SLAM (Simultaneous Localization and Mapping) technology allows a device to position itself and navigate through a given space based on its surroundings. Sometimes called CML (Concurrent Mapping and Localization), it was initially developed for robots and autonomous appliances.

In 3D scanning (mobile mapping), SLAM algorithms combine and use the sets of data collected from one or more sources to track the scanner’s position, all while building up an accurate, complete 3D point cloud of the surrounding environment.

SLAM-based 3D scanners can work in extremely remote locations where GPS or GNSS signals are unavailable, and make it easy to quickly 3D scan large areas like building sites and underground caves.

TLS (Terrestrial Laser Scanner) selection

Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) is a form of 3D scanning in which tripod-mounted laser scanners are used to capture large objects and environments. The technique is widely used in construction, surveying, forestry, and other disciplines.

Also known as long-range laser scanning, TLS involves deploying a scanner in a static location, whereas other laser scanners may be handheld or mounted to vehicles to capture data from a greater number of vantage points. TLS produces more accurate scans than mobile scanning — at the expense of speed and simplicity.

These 3D scanners are often generically called LiDAR scanners, though terrestrial scanners aren’t the only type of scanner to use the technology.

Desktop dental 3D scanner selection

Bit by bit, dentists are beginning to replace traditional methods with digital dentistry. This involves the use of digital capture, digital design, and digital production technologies to improve the speed, accuracy, and profitability of dental practice.

A key part of digital dentistry is the use of 3D scanners, which capture 3D shapes using a combination of cameras and light projection before transferring the result to a computer.

Desktop dental 3D scanners capture dental models or impressions (negative imprints of a patient’s teeth and gums) and are usually used in a laboratory setting.

Jewelry 3D scanner selection

A popular use of 3D scanning technology is jewelry 3D scanning. This is the process of 3D scanning jewelry, precious metals, and gemstones with the goal of creating a digital copy of the original object. The digital twin can be used for many purposes, such as repairing or duplicating a valuable item.

3D scanners have been adopted as a supplementary tool by traditional jewelers, but the technology has also allowed newcomers to enter the field, many of which have combined 3D scanning with jewelry 3D printing.

Most jewelry 3D scanners are enclosed or partly enclosed desktop machines that offer ideal lighting conditions. Desktop jewelry 3D scanners almost always feature an automatic turntable, or auto-rotating table, on which the piece of jewelry is placed to be scanned.

3D body scanner selection

3D body scanners are designed to capture your full body in 3D. The result is a 3D model (or 3D avatar) of your exact body shape with accurate data such as body measurements, posture analysis, textures, …

Originally developed for the fashion industry as fast and accurate 3D measurement solutions, 3D body scanners are now used in various other fields such as healthcare, 3D figurines and 3D photos, fitness, and entertainment.

To obtain a full-body 3D scan, the customer or patient holds a pose for a few seconds, which is the time it takes for the 3D scanner to capture images from all angles. The 3D software then reconstructs the final 3D model of the body by “stitching” all of the images together, generating a highly detailed 3D model. Models can have colors and textures depending on the type of body scanner.

Which 3D scanner is the best for me?

3D scanning can be used in a large variety of fields. For every application, the features necessary to generate a great 3D model are different. The 3D scanner must be chosen according to your desired use and results.

What the best 3D scanner is for you will depend on many factors, detailed below.

3D scanning field of application

The first thing to take into consideration is the field in which the 3D scanner will be used. It could be for example:

Professional use
  • Small objects: dentists, jewelers, and other professionals can use 3D scanning to capture small pieces.
  • Big objects: professionals such as architects and archeologists might need to 3D scan large objects such as statues, archeological fields, or buildings.
  • 3D body scanning is increasingly used in various professional fields such as healthcare and 3D figurines.
Personal use
  • Occasional scanning: A person might need to use 3D scanning on rare occasions or maybe just one time.
  • 3D scanning on a regular basis: You can use 3D scanning for various things from making personalized objects to making a replica of yourself, friends, or family members.

Type of 3D scanned object

Dimensions and distance of the object (scan area and scanning range)

The “best 3D scanner” will depend on the dimensions and the distance of the objects you wish to 3D scan. A desktop 3D scanner can’t 3D scan a 2-meter-tall statue, and a handheld 3D scanner might not be the best option to 3D scan a very small and precise piece.

Surface of the object

Not every 3D scanner is able to capture colors. For color capture, you need a scanner with photogrammetry.

It can also be challenging to capture objects with black, shiny, or reflective surfaces. However, as 3D scanning OEMs fine-tune their technology and hardware, such surfaces are becoming less and less of a challenge. For cases where it is a challenge, it is always possible to use a white mattifying spray.

Desired resolution

Not all 3D scanners offer the same level of resolution. Therefore, depending on the quality you need, some 3D scanner models are more adapted than others. Reverse engineering requires high resolution and precision, for example.

Desktop 3D scanners

Desktop 3D scanners can be ideal for both professionals and hobbyists that need to scan small parts. They tend to be more accurate since you aren’t holding and moving the 3D scanner around yourself.

Also, many desktop 3D scanners come with (or at least optionally) an automatic turntable, which makes it much easier to get clean 3D scans.

Handheld 3D scanners

Handheld 3D scanners, a.k.a. portable 3D scanners, are versatile and can 3D scan small to very large objects. They also enable users to 3D scan hard-to-reach places. The precision and the ability to capture color and texture will depend on the 3D scanner model.

3D body scanners

3D body scanners have applications in numerous fields.

  • Professionals: professionals might want to 3D scan a person to make a 3D figurine, prepare for a surgical intervention, follow-up on a pregnancy or skin conditions, etc.
  • Individuals: 3D body scanners can help with fitness goals and personal shape. These 3D scanners usually can’t capture color and texture but offer a high resolution.
3D scanning mobile apps

3D scanning mobile apps are ideal for occasional users that are not willing to or are unable to invest in a 3D scanner. They are not as precise as most 3D scanners, but mobile apps are a great way to get familiar with 3D scanning.

3D scanner price

3D scanner prices can range from just several hundred dollars to over $100,000.

Desktop 3D scanner price

Desktop 3D scanner prices vary a lot from one model to another. It can start at a few hundred dollars and can top out at around $50,000 for the more advanced 3D scanners. More industrial-grade, robot-mountable scanners can cost double.

Handheld 3D scanner price

The handheld 3D scanner price range is very wide. A professional handheld 3D scanner can start at around $5,000 and can reach up to over $70,000 for very high-end and advanced 3D scanners.

There are plenty of great entry-level options for a couple of thousand dollars. Mid-range handheld 3D scanners tend to cost between $10,000 and $30,000.

Industrial 3D scanner price

Industrial 3D scanners generally offer more cutting-edge features and higher precision. Hence, their prices can be pretty high, ranging from $10,000 for the simplest ones to more than $100,000 for the most evolved ones.

3D scanning applications

There are many reasons to buy a 3D scanner, for various industries and applications.

Reverse engineering

Reverse engineering, also known as retro-engineering, is the process of extracting information from an object or process and studying it. 3D scanners can be used to capture all the parts of a disassembled object to create a 3D model. The user will then be able to digitally study it in 3D afterward.


Jewelers are starting to use 3D printing and 3D scanning to build casts in order to create amazing jewels. Read more on our 3D printing and 3D scanning for jewelry page.


Dentists and dental labs are using 3D printing to build and create various dental appliances. Find more information on our 3D printing and 3D scanning for the dental industry.


3D scanners are very versatile and are used in many different ways in healthcare, from making prosthetics to studying a person’s posture. Find more information in our guide to 3D scanning and 3D printing for the medical industry.

A dental 3D scan by Pierre-Antoine.


Industries need to make sure their factories are producing perfect products that are perfectly in line with the products’ reference dimensions. 3D scanners enable professionals to efficiently measure potential discrepancies.

Figurines and 3D selfies

3D portraits or mini-me’s are increasingly popular. To make one, you scan yourself in 3D and 3D print your mini lookalike. To learn more about the subject, you can visit our 3D printed figurines, 3D selfies, and 3D portraits page.


Architects can use 3D scanning to capture an area, building, or habitation and present it in a more efficient way to their clients. Find more information on our 3D scanning and 3D printing for architects page.

Archeology and museums

Archaeologists, museum curators, and researchers are starting to use 3D scanning to get a better view and capture ancient pieces. To read more about this topic, you can visit our 3D printing and 3D scanning in archeology and cultural preservation page.

A dot cloud of Notre Dame. Source: engadget

Overview of 3D scanning technologies


Photogrammetry consists of taking measurements from photographs to recover the exact positions of surface points.

The principle of photogrammetry is to analyze several photographs of a static subject, taken from different viewpoints, and to automatically detect pixels corresponding to the same physical point.

Photogrammetry enables scanners to capture an object’s color (a.k.a. texture). This technology also often serves to detect positioning markers (sticky targets placed on or around the object to help the scanner precisely align scans together).

Structured light

3D scanners using structured light project a series of linear light patterns onto an object.

The system is then able to examine the deformations of each line and to calculate the distance between the 3D scanner and the object’s surface. With this data, the software is able to build an accurate 3D model of the object.

Structured light 3D scanning technology. Source: Depth Biomecanics


A 3D scanner using triangulation technology will project a laser beam on the object’s surface and measure the deformation of the laser ray (similar to structured light, but with one or more lasers).

3D scanning laser triangulation technology. Source: NeoMetrix


Contact 3D scanners probe the subject via physical touch. A touch probe moves along an object’s surface to record 3D information.

For more precise and detailed explanations, you can visit our 3D scanning technologies page.


What is the most accurate 3D scanner?

The most accurate 3D scanners are metrology 3D scanners, which generally offer an accuracy of around 20 microns.

Is a 3D scanner worth it?

This is entirely up to how much you will be using your 3D scanner. We can however say that 3D scanning is an impressive technology that does help save a lot of time for product design, reverse engineering, part inspection, and many other use cases.

How much does a good 3D scanner cost?

Again, the definition of “good” is quite subjective in 3D scanning. Some of the best 3D scanners we have reviewed cost between $10,000 and $30,000. But a $5,000 3D scanner can do “good” if its specs meet your requirements.

Is 3D scanning expensive?

Not only is 3D scanning hardware generally expensive, but so are the necessary, professional software solutions. Sometimes, it’s a one-time fee for a permanent license; other times, a monthly or yearly subscription is the only way to access a software suite. And to run such software, you will likely require a powerful, monster of a PC with a lot of RAM and a high-end graphics card. You may also need to buy a tripod or turntable if they aren’t included in your 3D scanner package. All of this can quickly amount to several thousand dollars.

Day-to-day 3D scanning expenses can include cans of mattifying spray and rolls of adhesive markers if you need them. Other than that, aside from potential software subscriptions, there are no extra hidden costs.

3D scanner to speed up and reduce the cost of production

Analytics and business

Geometry control

Experts recommend

Author: Semyon Popadyuk

Author: Semyon Popadyuk

The Canadian company Creaform is one of the manufacturers that are creating the future before our eyes. Creaform's portable 3D metrology solutions are already changing the game in manufacturing, improving quality control and streamlining workflows. iQB Technologies is the exclusive distributor in Russia of such innovative products of the company as HandySCAN 3D and Go!SCAN 3D 3D scanners, MaxSHOT 3D photogrammetry and other solutions.

In an exclusive interview with Creafrom Regional Manager Damien Plougastel and Channel Manager Marc-Antoine Schneider, we discussed why the modern enterprise needs 3D scanning, what trends will prevail in the 3D market in the coming years, and how the role of the human in the business model will change. Industry 4.0.

– Which Creaform concept would you call the most successful and why?

Marc-Antoine Schneider: Without a doubt, HandySCAN is Creafrom's most successful product to date. This is the first 3D scanner developed by our company in 2005 and became a real breakthrough in the field of metrology. It has contributed to the success of the company as a whole and remains the most innovative scanner on the market today.

Damien Plougastel: In addition, HandySCAN is our best-selling system.

- Do you have any plans for a new "breakthrough" product, like the HandySCAN 3D scanner?

P: Not at the moment. Of course, we are developing new devices, but HandySCAN in its current form is an extremely competitive product, and there is no need to replace it.

Sh.: It should be noted that every year Creafrom invests from 7 to 10 million dollars in R&D, we are the most innovative company in our industry. We release a new product every two years on average. In 2017, it was MaxSHOT, which, like HandySCAN, is distributed in Russia by iQB Technologies. This year we plan to update the software. And there is one interesting novelty that you will learn about in the very near future.

- You provided figures for Creafrom's investment in production. Can you share your sales statistics?

S.Sh.: According to our estimates, Creafrom's turnover in 2018 will be approximately 150 million euros, and the company's annual growth will be an average of 20% per year over the past five years.

A.P.: The goal is to bring the turnover to 200 million by 2020, that is, we are developing very actively.

Creaform visiting iQB Technologies

– How do you assess the development of the global 3D scanner market?

Sh.: As such, we do not have published statistics, since this market is not studied in detail, this is a rather difficult task. We turn to third-party services that conduct market assessments.

P.: But we can definitely say that the metrology market is growing: the measurement capabilities are expanding, the requirements and quality standards are becoming more stringent. And besides, optical devices play an increasing role in metrology (namely, Creaform specializes in them), the non-contact method is replacing physical measurements. For us, this is a good trend.

S.Sh.: I would add that there is more and more talk about Industry 4.0 now, and Creaform is contributing to its approach with its automated and robotic solutions - for example, 3D scanning using robotic arms. Such solutions meet the expectations of manufacturers. Creaform plans to take a share of this new Industry 4.0 market, which has huge potential: its turnover by 2020 is estimated at 3 billion euros.

- What other trends do you think will develop in the coming years in the 3D world?

P.: There will be further robotization of the industry, including in the field of quality control, and Creaform has very competitive solutions for this. Any of our 3D scanners can be mounted on robots to perform automated inspections. As we know, such a system was presented at the iQB Technologies booth at the Metalloobrabotka-2018 exhibition.

Sh.: I think that all economic powers are interested in producing better quality goods - this is a global need. And today, each manufacturer can stand out due to both the quality of their products and the ratio of price and quality. For this reason, industries need to pay much more attention to control issues, and Creaform offers solutions that are an important link in the quality control chain in production. In general, it can be stated that any industry has an interest in the introduction of 3D technologies to improve the quality control of their products.

Automated quality control system at Metalloobrabotka exhibition: HandySCAN 700 handheld 3D scanner and Fanuc LR Mate 200iD robot arm

I want to say one more thing. 3D printing, an industry that is currently on the rise and will continue to evolve, has opened up incredible opportunities. Creaform is one of the biggest players in the 3D industry, and although we don't manufacture printers, scan-based 3D models can be 3D printed. The real revolution will happen when 3D printers are used as full-fledged production tools and the quality of printed products will need to be checked. The industry will need the solutions that Creaform offers to inspect 3D printed parts.

- Which industries use Creaform 3D scanners the most?

A: First, in the automotive industry. This industry, which is often ahead of many others in terms of technology, actively uses innovations - including those offered by our company. The world's largest manufacturers are customers of Creaform today. Secondly, it is the aerospace industry. In fact, Creaform products are indispensable in all industries related to the production of transport equipment, because it requires particularly strict quality control of parts.

– Please tell us about some interesting project using Creaform 3D scanners.

P: We were contacted by Jet Aviations, a Swiss firm that buys old aircraft and does complete remodeling, for example to build private jets. Our company has performed a complete digitization of the huge Boeing 185 in order to completely recreate its interior. The team made scans and measurements on site. It was a colossal work that lasted several months.

S.Sh.: Digitization took two weeks, and I think it took another two weeks to reconstruct the CAD file.

– Let's talk about Russia. What, in your opinion, is the specificity of the Russian market?

Sh. : Russia is a country with a growing economy. When we were developing the development plan until 2020, we analyzed the markets for investment. And Russia, as one of the twenty largest world economic powers, is included in this list. We see the same industrial potential in Russia as in France, and France is the second market that Creaform entered after Canada, it is very familiar to us. Since 2003, we have been selling equipment worth several million euros in France.

- But there are difficulties in the Russian market. The problem of certification, for example.

P.: Yes, but this year we are certifying all equipment for the Russian market.

Sh.: Half of the range has already been certified, there are several recently released products ( HandySCAN 3D model range is included in the state register of measuring instruments of the Russian Federation of the metrological class - ed. ). Indeed, this is an obstacle for foreign manufacturers. Logistics in Russia is more complicated than in other countries. To export goods to Russia, you need to take into account many formalities. Let's not forget about the restrictions caused by international sanctions against Russia, which also create certain difficulties for us. But despite this, we will continue to cooperate with your country. We have quadrupled our sales in Russia over the past year, and our Russian partner iQB Technologies plans to double Creaform's sales this year.

A typical application for the HandySCAN 3D handheld 3D scanner is the automotive industry

I will add that many foreign companies operate in Russia, such as Renault and Mercedes, which are very important clients of Creaform on a global scale. In Russia, we have huge opportunities to attract these clients, as we already have a successful experience of cooperation with them in other countries. We see great potential here.

- In Russia, there is a certain skepticism among engineers and technical specialists who say that 3D scanners are very expensive and inefficient toys. How could you dissuade them?

P.: The numbers speak for themselves: Creaform has sold about ten thousand 3D scanners worldwide to date, and the annual sales rate remains at the level of 2-3 thousand. There is a real demand, and examples are the largest enterprises - BMW, Mercedes, Airbus, Boeing, which trust Creaform, purchase new systems every year and implement them in production. Here is proof that this equipment is in demand.

Sh .: I would answer these people that any investment requires an assessment of its payback. Today, 3D scanners are available on the market at prices ranging from 25,000 to 150,000 euros. When designing and manufacturing a product, it is necessary to consider not only the cost of production, but also the cost of a manufacturing error. Let's say a manufacturer has made a mold to create plastic parts. If the mold turns out to be defective, it ends up costing ten times more than a 3D scanner. Because the scanner will allow you to check the form and avoid defects before the part is put into production.

Thus, it is more profitable to invest in a 3D scanner that guarantees quality and eliminate the cost of culling a large number of parts. And I also think that from the point of view of sustainable development, which is now being talked about more and more, it is more profitable for enterprises to improve the quality of production, take care of the environment and better control the production process. It is more profitable for everyone to produce a quality product quickly - not just for your own business.

– Of course, many people are put off by large investments. But also, perhaps, a conservative view of things plays a role, hence the skepticism.

SH: People in general are generally conservative. Once you're used to a particular way of working, it's hard to switch to something new. It is inherent in human nature - the desire to preserve what seems good and familiar. Over the past fifty years, it has become obvious that technological innovations - including the 3D industry - have significantly improved people's lives, made it more convenient. 3D technologies help to treat patients through the creation of prostheses and new devices, improve the safety of aircraft and cars - in general, their impact affects each of us.

P.: Creaform's presentations also help convince skeptics of the benefits of 3D scanning. We demonstrate the technology with concrete examples, convince people that this equipment can bring real benefits, and in this way we have already sold ten thousand 3D scanners.

- How do you think the business models of enterprises using 3D technologies will change?

Sh .: As for Industry 4.0, it will change the very model of the functioning of the plant and the role of man in production: the performance of particularly complex, dangerous or routine tasks will be assigned to specialized robots.

Thus, in the industry of the future, humans will play a more advanced role in managing, installing and maintaining these robots. This will contribute to the growth of the professional level and self-realization of factory specialists. And it is obvious that the 3D industry, as one of the driving forces of Industry 4.0, will make a significant contribution to a radical change in the production model, including through the development of automation and quality control processes.

Article published on 05/18/2018, updated on 03/03/2022

Choosing a 3D scanner for reverse engineering | 3Dcast

Modern production technologies involve the use of certain equipment. In recent years, manufacturing companies have begun using 3D scanners for reverse engineering.

Definition of Reverse Engineering

Over the years, products have been created without the right set of documentation. Masters were guided by their experience and knowledge. After some time, programs for creating drawings and three-dimensional models appeared. Reverse engineering is the process of creating technical documentation by scanning a part with special equipment. The digital model can be opened in CAD or other software. This is done to optimize parameters and add new features. In the virtual space, it is possible to conduct tests that would be very expensive in practice and would not lead to a result.

Reverse engineering has also become popular due to the growing popularity of 3D printing. This technology greatly simplifies the process and reduces the cost of the product. Today, production using 3D printing is available to everyone, it is enough to purchase the appropriate printer and install the appropriate software on the computer.

Selection criteria

There are many different models of 3D scanners on the market. Their selection is carried out according to several criteria:

  • Detail precision.
  • How it works.
  • Compatible with certain software.
  • Cost.

The choice of the scanner is also carried out according to the assigned tasks. Scanning can be performed on parts of different sizes and geometries. Universal devices are expensive and require more professionalism.

ToF Scanners are designed to work with large cabinet products that are larger than 10,000 mm on either side. Handheld models with structured illumination are used to scan small objects. If the object has dimensions up to 3000 mm, portable models are used. They are laser and optical type. Laser scanners are the easiest to use, as optical ones require proper preparation.

Small items are best scanned with optical portable devices. Universal options are equipped with a multi-axis rotary platform. It copes well with scanning the relief surface represented by various materials.

There are many dental scanners on the market. The devices are characterized by high accuracy, allow you to get detailed images for the formation of the model.

Applicable software

The field of 3D design and simulation has evolved over the years. The software was created by many companies. At the same time, some became in demand, others are no longer supported. Recently, developers have been trying to support various file formats. To do this, we made the import and export functions

There are several programs that are most popular. They are:

  • Geomagic Essentials. A partner product of a company that produces equipment for automatic design upon receipt of the necessary data. The software allows you to work with images obtained using Shining 3D EinScan Pro 2x. The software allows you to work with data that is obtained when scanning premises or products. The functionality includes obtaining a cross section, restoring the mesh and fitting elements to simulate the assembly process.
  • Geomagic Desing X. Professional software used to work with scans for further design. The functionality allows you to work with solid objects, emit the connection of individual elements.
  • Autodesk Meshmixer. Popular software with a large set of tools. It is able to independently process the received images to form a grid. The advantages include a clear interface and a large number of patches.

When choosing a scanner, the possibility of using one of the above programs is taken into account.

Learn more