The Occipital Structure Sensor is an iPad attachment 3D scanner. It's an affordable scanning solution of decent quality which is not difficult to configure or use.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Very affordable
This 3D scanner is quite affordable for hobbyists and DIY enthusiasts. Decent 3D scanning systems are hard to come by at the price the OSS costs and, while there are other, more affordable, tablet-attachable 3D scanning systems, this unit beats the competition in product quality and customer satisfaction.
Pro No object size limit
Since this is a handheld device, theoretically there is no size limit for target objects, as long as the specified distance ranges are respected.
Pro Export format can be imported to virtually all CAD software
By default, the only export option is the OBJ format. This is enough for most cases, given that this file format can be imported into pretty much any modern CAD software.
Pro Free and easy-to-use official software
This 3D scanner's official software is available for free, which is great for hobbyists, considering that several other manufacturers sell their software licenses for hundreds or thousands of dollars. Setting everything up is quite simple, just plug in the device to your iPad and it will automatically install an app for sensor calibration (Calibrator) and an app for scanning (Structure). Both apps have simple and intuitive interfaces.
Pro Dedicated app for creating room 3D models
Room Capture is another popular and freely available app for this device. It can be used to create a 3D model of an entire room. The process itself is very straightforward, just run the application and scan the room (the app will guide you through the scanning process). The program will take care of all scanning data, no prior expertise or external processing software is necessary. This feature is particularly useful for those in real estate.
Pro Extra export options, if using the Skanect software
If used with the paid Skanect software, scans be exported in the PLY, STL and VRML formats. It should be noted that Skanect is a desktop-based application, so it cannot be used with the iPad or other mobile devices and requires attaching the scanner to a computer.
Pro Advanced desktop software available
This device also has a macOS/Windows desktop application called Skanect, which allows it to be used while connected to a computer. It extends the capabilities of the basic Structure Sensor, but the professional version of this software costs $129.
Pro Decent resolution at close range
This iPad attachment has a maximum resolution of 0.5mm at 40 cm range, which is quite decent for scanning small objects at a close distance.
Con Can't be used as a standalone device
Since this is not a standalone scanner, you’ll need to have a compatible iPad to use it. Alternatively, advanced users have the option to buy a bracketless sensor that can be attached to fixed installations, robots, iPhones or Android devices, but this requires considerable setup. There's also the option of using it with a desktop computer, but in this case the desktop software needs to be bought.
Con Scanning software doesn't have many features
This device's scanning software, Structure, is very simple. Consequently, it doesn't as many features or extra options as some other scanning apps.
Con Scan resolution decreases dramatically with distance
As the distance from the target object increases, the scan quality drops dramatically. At the maximum distance of 3.5 m, the resolution drops to 30-35 mm, which is virtually unusable.