The Artec Eva is a high-end professional-quality 3D scanner. Industrial-class scanners can be even more expensive, but the Eva is one of the best options below the $50,000 mark.
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Pro Impressive resolution
In terms of scan quality, this is one of the best handheld 3D scanners available. The maximum resolution of the unit is an impressive 0.5 mm at the minimum 0.4 m scanning distance.
Pro Good price-performance ratio
For professionals that don't have a permanent studio set up or that need the versatility that a handheld scanner provides, the Artec Eva is a great option. The generated scans can be used for commercial-level endeavors, and easily dwarf the quality of scans of consumer-level devices. Though the price is high, the high quality can justify the price tag for high-end users.
Pro Wide variety of output formats
The data gathered from this device can be used in almost every CAD application. The full list of supported formats is impressive: OBJ, PLY, WRL, STL, AOP, ASCII, Disney PTEX, E57 and XYZRGB. The scanned data can be used for purely geometric design operations (like editing and redesigning scanned shapes), as well as for applications involving shape, colour and texture of objects (art and design based applications). This array of file formats, which includes some that are proprietary or uncommonly used, avoids having to take annoying extra steps for converting files to the desired format.
Pro Can scan traditionally difficult materials
Many 3D scanners have issues with reflective, dark, or low density materials. The Artec Eva is capable of scanning materials with these characteristics with good results, as shown in this review.
Pro Relatively quick scanning makes scanning living subjects easier
Even small movements can ruin a 3D scan when scanning a living subject. The Eva can scan a human face in about 20 seconds in ideal conditions, and extremities can take less than a minute, with only minor issues. Therefore, this scanner is very popular for full body scanning: in fact, it was used to create the first ever body scan of Barack Obama back in 2014.
Pro Built-in light source for better scanning conditions
Because the Eva projects its own light on the target object, it tends to always get good scan results, even in less-than-favorable lighting conditions. That being said, extreme lighting conditions (such as very dim lighting or very bright background lights, such as sunlight) can still harm scan quality.
Pro Can be used with Artec Studio, which is very helpful
This scanner can be used with the Artec Studio software, which is a very versatile tool. Amateurs can use this software in Autopilot mode, making the process as simple as answering a couple of simple questions about the object (shape/colour/texture) and letting the software do the rest on its own. Professionals, on the other hand, can use the “full toolbox” that allows them to manipulate and process the scanned data. These features make the software worth the hefty investment (a license costs $400 per year). There’s also a free 30-day trial version (containing all features) of this software.
Pro Easy to handle
The Eva is comfortable to manipulate: the handle fits nicely on one's hand, and good weight distribution facilitates a steady scan, as long as the unit remains vertically aligned.
Pro Good field of view size
The field view of this scanner is 536 x 371 mm, meaning you can capture a scene with this size with just a single shot.
Pro No object size limit
As a handheld scanner, there is theoretically no limit to scannable object size, as long as you can keep a distance between 0.4 m and 1.0 m from the object you are scanning. The Artec Eva can be successfully used to scan tiny LEGO figures, human bodies and entire minivans.
Pro Good documentation available
The Artec Eva is well documented, with high quality manuals available for download from the manufacturer’s website. There are also plenty of YouTube tutorials on how to use the device.
Pro Very simple to set up
The initial setup procedure of this unit is surprisingly simple. After powering it up and connecting it to a computer, you just need to activate the scanner through the Artec Installation Center program on your computer. AIC can be installed together with Artec Studio or directly from the manufacturer’s website for free. After that, you can simply launch Artec Studio and begin scanning.
Pro Can be used with Geomagic Design X
Geomagic Design X, a powerful software for reverse engineering and creating feature-based, editable solid models compatible with most CAD programs, is available to be used with the Artec Eva. It should be noted this powerful software costs even more than the scanner itself.
Pro It's possible to export directly to SolidWorks
A SolidWorks CAD plugin allows users to export newly scanned 3D objects directly to SolidWorks. However, this plugin is expensive, costing around $6,000.
Pro Certified accuracy
Every Artec Eva scanner comes with a certificate guaranteeing its accuracy. This certificate complies with VDI (Association of German Engineers) standards.
Pro Can capture color and texture
The Artec Eva is capable of capturing surface features of target objects, such as color and texture details.
Con Resolution levels decrease with distance
The further away from the object you go, the more the scan resolution deteriorates, which is normal for handheld scanner. At the maximum distance of scanning distance of 1.0 m, the resolution is only 3 mm.
Con Requires a powerful computer
The scanner itself is so powerful that a fairly high-end computer is required to process the data it outputs. An i5 processor or higher is required, as well as a whopping 12GB of RAM. Without a 1GB dedicated video card, you'll encounter many hangups during the scanning process.
Con The structured light sensor can be dangerous
The Artec Eva is a structured light scanner,, which projects a pattern of light onto the subject and measures distortions from multiple angles to compute the 3D surface of the model. This requires a powerful light source which can cause damage if shone directly into one's eyes. If 3D scanning a person's face, for instance, it's imperative their eyes remain closed.
Con No free software available
When you get this 3D scanner, make sure you set aside enough money to invest in software. All the available software options are quite expensive, including Artec Studio (an yearly license costs $400).
Con Poor selection of scanner accessories
Besides standard cables, there are barely any accessories provided by the manufacturer. The only ones available are battery packs and hard cases. For both items, the prices are only available upon request.
Con Annoying cables needed
The Eva requires a power cable and a USB cable to run. While both are long enough for simple use, they can be easily tangled, stepped on, or even scanned by mistake. Using the external Power Pack is a possible, albeit expensive, solution to this particular issue.
Con Very expensive
The Eva has a high price tag, it requires a fairly powerful laptop to function (due to the intense resources needed to process its scans), and the software that can be used with it is expensive. With a cost this high, many businesses may prefer to sacrifice portability and choose a high-end static device capable of achieving better results.