How To Buy a High Resolution 3D Scanner

young female working with 3D printer

Do you want to learn more about what matters in getting a quality 3D scanner? Do you want to know how you can find the best 3D scanner for 3D printing? 

3D scanning is great for creating art, preserving history, and building prostheses. When paired with 3D printing, we have endless applications for them. However, it's not enough to have a 3D scanner.

You also want one that has the right resolution for you. Here, we'll discuss how to pick a high resolution 3D scanner for you. Keep reading to know more. 

Criteria to Consider for a High Resolution 3D Scanner

If you want to get a smartphone, you likely have some expectations and specs in mind. When shopping for a 3D scanner, you also want to be aware of what you want and need.

Here are some of the things to consider when looking for a 3D scanner. 


The resolution of a 3D scanner is one of the most important factors to consider when buying one. The resolution of your 3D scanner is the least possible distance between any two points in a 3D model. A high resolution 3D scanner will give you a detailed and realistic 3D model.

A high resolution scan will take longer since it needs to take in every detail. The software may take a while longer to process the 3D image, too. Also, consider how powerful your computer is before taking hi-res 3D scans. 


The next aspect of 3D scanning is accuracy. This is how close the scan's resemblance is to the object. The higher the accuracy of your 3D scanner, the truer to the object the 3D image will turn out.

When you look at the accuracy of a 3D scanner, you want to see smaller values. For example, a scanner with up to 0.030mm accuracy is more precise than one with up to 0.040mm accuracy. Professional 3D scanners have these numbers more often than those for personal use.

To find the best accuracy, a scanner needs to get calibrated well. Often, the manufacturer already does this, but you may also do it onsite. The accuracy of a 3D scanner is essential for the industrial and medical fields.

Scanning Speed

Next, we have the time it takes for a 3D scanner to complete a scan or measure an object. The scanning rate of different types of scanners will differ. Different technologies will result in different scanning rates and measurement methods. 

Each type will also measure the speed in different ways. For example, a handheld scanner's speed gets calculated by how many frames in a second it can make. A structured light 3D scanner's speed is how many frames and points it can capture in a second. 


The global industry for 3D scanning is at $3.29 billion, meaning 3D scanning technology is on the rise. As it develops further and becomes more common, you can expect lower prices. Now, 3D scanners still may cost between $3000 and $100,000. 

Consider the other fees that may follow after the initial expenses. That includes training, sales tax, and shipping fees. You may also have to spend extra on extended warranty, technical support, and installation.

Other Factors to Consider in 3D Scanners 

Here are some more aspects of 3D scanners you need to consider before buying. First, consider the maintenance of your 3D scanner. You don't want to buy a 3D scanner without knowing how its upkeep goes. 

It also helps to know how portable your 3D scanner is and if you need portability. If you plan to recreate or make 3D models of large objects, it'd help to have handheld 3D inspection systems. However, if the goal is stationary scanning, there are many options in the market.

Consider the size of your scanner as well. You want a 3D scanner that can fit your workspace. In contrast, you also want to choose a scanner that will reflect the size of the objects you want to scan.

The size of your scanner also affects how easy it'll be to use. If you choose a 3D scanner, you want one that can ease your work. If you're going to do a lot of data capture, make sure the 3D scanner can capture large amounts of data.

The scanning environment is also important if you plan to do more than indoor 3D scanning. Do you plan to scan in other sites like outdoors? Find out the optimal environment, temperature, and light you need before buying.

Finally, let's talk about software features. Do you need 3D scanning software that can do simple tasks or do you want one that's more versatile? Before you make decisions, it helps to do a trial with the scanner and program.

Tips on Buying a 3D Scanner

Like we mentioned earlier, a way to find the best 3D scanner is to do a trial of one before you buy. 3D scanners are quite expensive and are still a big deal. You want to make sure you're 100% sure about the model you choose before you pay for it.

Look for the application you want to use the scanner for and find the top 3D scanner in that field. For example, among the professional 3D scanners, ScanTech iReal 2E Color is a top choice. Artec EVA is also another great industrial 3D scanner for its handheld feature and accuracy.

It helps to compare datasheets for 3D scanners when you're shopping. For example, a 3D scanner with 1-second speeds per scan is faster than one that takes up 1.5seconds per scan.

Get the Hi-Res 3D Scanner You Need

Like when you're buying a computer or printer, the specs of your 3D scanner are important. We hope this guide shed some light on the features you must pay attention to for 3D scanners. We also hope you soon find the best high-quality 3D scanner for your needs.

Now you know how to buy a high resolution 3D scanner.

Do you want to learn more about 3D scanners and printers? Check out our other posts for more content on 3D scanning and 3D printing.


Share this article!

Follow us!

Find more helpful articles: