April 17, 2011

Trimensional: 3D Scanner for iPhone

Nifty, even if I’m not sure how & why it would be practical:

[Via Mike Orr]

Posted by John Nack at 8:12 AM on April 17, 2011


  • Scott Valentine — 8:30 AM on April 17, 2011

    I can see some utility for this kind of application, if you could get some dimensions into it and have it operate on a larger scale. How about walking through a new home you are about to purchase and scanning the interior so you can do some 3D planning for decoration? You could head straight to the furniture store and scan in that couch and table, get color swatches, and change the time of day to see how window placement affects light in the room.

    Or maybe you want to create a 3D model of some small sculpture or toy to use in an animation – something that is commonly done now with very expensive laser systems. If you could do it directly with something like an iPhone, and have the result be editable, you’d have a very fast work flow.

    Of course, the app doesn’t look like it has the horsepower for such things, but aim high, no?

  • Scott Valentine — 8:35 AM on April 17, 2011

    Oh, and hey… as a PS Extended user, this would be a fantastic way to grab textures and simple meshes for compositing work. Need a realistic 3D tree trunk? Go out and scan one! If you could bring the mesh into PS, then split out the texture, you’d have a great way to build up scenes from real-world objects very quickly.

  • Rob — 8:55 AM on April 17, 2011

    It’s a clever idea, but its utility is very limited. The app works by lighting up portions of the screen, casting light on a nearby object from different angles, then combining them for the 3-D image. That means the object must be quite close to the screen–a roomful of objects is far beyond the capability of the app. Even for objects close to the screen, the resulting model is at best mediocre. Faces don’t generally look very good. If you want a nice model of part of your hand, though . . . .

  • jDoo — 9:08 AM on April 17, 2011

    I like the effect – but see a more interesting use of converting a flat 2D face image to 3D in the Morfo (no affiliation) app. At least with morfo, there is some fun use of the 3D.

  • Jay|Dish Network TV Blog — 10:01 AM on April 17, 2011

    This is way cool! I can’t imagine it looking that real, but still a lot of fun to play with.

  • Michael Raphael — 1:02 PM on April 17, 2011

    Good comments but this app is not only limited, its weak for what its trying to do. 3D scanning is a mature field with professional products that can be used to scan all sorts of objects including sculpture, airplanes, buildings, and even people! This app is at the bottom of the list. True, all other scanners are more expensive but they work. See these sites for full details as examples – http://www.directdimensions.com or http://www.shapeshot.com

  • Booksarenice — 2:35 PM on April 17, 2011

    The update / this video from the app developer explains how it can be used: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a3IQcF2jO8k

  • Sophie Byrd — 2:07 AM on April 18, 2011

    This looks great !

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