Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Is 3D Scanning Entering the Consumer Market?

Guest post by Scott Harmon, Z Corp. VP Business Development.

One of Z Corporation’s strengths is that the our technology is based on highly reliable, mass manufactured consumer technology, specifically HP print heads. You would have to be hiding under a rock not to notice that a number of 3D technologies are entering the consumer space. 3D TV’s and movie screens are wide spread, and much has been made of 3D printing kits. But what about 3D scanning? It appears that the time has come.

Many of you have probably heard of Microsoft’s new Kinect. Kinect is a game controller for Xbox, or perhaps the replacement for a game controller. Fundamentally, Kinect can see what you are doing, and it uses your body motion as the interface to games. Technically, Kinect consists of an infrared chip that projects images on a surface and reads them back to determine 3D shape. It also has a camera for capturing color. If you put these together you get a device that can capture color 3D data - for just $150 (USD).

Clearly the data resolution and quality are not going to be anything near what you get with a professional-quality 3D scanner, but at $150, there are going to be a lot more people able to create 3D data very soon. The first hackers have already adapted the Kinect to work on a regular computer and generate 3D data. You can see an example of this at

If you know someone who’s creating 3D data using the Kinect, let us know; we’d be happy to make a full color 3D ZPrinted model from the Kinnect data!


  1. I have extensive scanning experience of thousands of people.

  2. Hi Roger, Are you using the Kinect? If so, we'll be happy to make a 3D printed model from the data for you.