EU-based RangeVision produces a portable 3D scanner that can produce very good results: the RangeVision Smart.
The Smart uses structured light technology, unlike some other 3D scanning solutions that use lasers. Structured light flashes a known pattern of light over a 3D object, and the resulting distortions from the expected pattern enable the device’s software to derive a 3D model.
In the case of the RangeVision Smart, structured light shines for 5-7 seconds to capture a fragment of the object. Repeated fragments would permit a full 360 degree reconstruction, with each fragment providing up to one million facets in a 3D mesh. That’s a lot of detail!
The Smart can scan small tabletop objects as well as larger objects simply through adjustments. Depending on the scan volume, accuracy increases or decreases, with accuracy ranging from 0.085mm to 0.16mm. This makes the Smart comparable in accuracy to much more expensive 3D scanning options, and also much better than Kinect-style 3D scanners.
The scanner itself weighs 0.7 kg, and you really need to mount it on a stable surface or tripod to ensure stability for proper scanning accuracy. To drive the Smart, you’ll also need a Windows machine with video card.
Priced at approximately USD$2,600, the RangeVision Smart could be a very useful 3D scanner for many situations – and one that is priced less than professional scanners of similar accuracy. While it’s priced more than several inexpensive sub-USD$1,000 3D scanners, it also produces higher quality scans.