FAQ

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Answers to frequently asked questions about KScan3D.

Contents

General Questions

Who can benefit from using KScan3D?

KScan3D provides a great way for students, novices, and hobbyists to capture and export 3D scan data. The software is also very capable of producing quality scan data for professional use.

What is KScan3D used for?

KScan3D is perfect for the development of visual effects, game assets, CAD/CAM objects, 3D printing, online/web visualizations, and more.

What is the KScan3D workflow?
  1. Scan an object to capture 3D meshes.
  2. Align the meshes automatically and/or manually.
  3. Edit the meshes to remove unneeded data, if necessary.
  4. Combine the meshes.
  5. Finalize the combined mesh.
  6. Export the finalized mesh.

Hardware Questions

What hardware is required to run KScan3D?

Please see the Hardware Requirements page to view minimum and recommended hardware requirements.

Which versions of the Kinect hardware are supported?

KScan3D supports Kinect for Windows V1 and V2, and Kinect for Xbox 360. The Kinect for Xbox One is not supported.

Which versions of ASUS hardware are supported?

KScan3D supports the ASUS Xtion PRO and Xtion PRO LIVE sensors.

Can I use other sensors?

No. KScan3D works exclusively with Kinect for Windows, Kinect for Xbox 360, Xtion PRO, and Xtion PRO LIVE sensors.

Why is the sensor not working?

First, make sure that the USB cable is connected securely. It may also be necessary to connect to a different USB port.

When using Kinect, also be sure that the power adapter is plugged into an electrical outlet. The Kinect is working when the LED light flashes green.

In some rare cases, the driver installation may have failed. In these cases, go to the Windows Control Panel, then go to the Uninstall section of the Programs and Features option. Uninstall KScan3D along with any OpenNI and PrimeSense drivers. Also ensure that there are no other Kinect drivers installed (such as the Kinect For Windows SDK/driver).

You may also need to enable Windows Update driver installation, as disabling this feature has been known to cause some issues with the PrimeSense drivers. To make sure it is enabled, click the Start button, then Devices and Printers. Right-click on the icon for your PC (it should be something like USER-PC), then select the "Device installation settings" option from the pop-up menu. In the dialog that appears, ensure the "Yes, do this automatically (recommended)" option is selected. If this was not already selected, click "Save Changes", otherwise click "Cancel" to close the dialog.

Reinstall KScan3D and reboot the computer. Windows should now detect the sensor and install the proper drivers for use with KScan3D.

Scanning Questions

How do I scan?

Scanning an object is as simple as aiming the sensor at the object and pressing the SCAN button in KScan3D. To capture multiple scans, you can enable batch scanning. When batch scanning is enabled, you can specify the number of scans you wish to capture along with a time delay between each scan.

How do I capture an entire object?

You can capture an entire object in one of two ways. You can move the sensor around the object and scan it from multiple angles, or you can keep the sensor stationary and rotate the object. The method you should use largely depends on the the object you wish to scan (for instance, a vase vs. a person).

With either method, it may help to adjust the X/Y-percent, Z-minimum, and Z-range depth cropping sliders to set up a narrow scanning window that contains only the data you wish to capture.

How far should the sensor be from the object I'm going to scan?

Objects that you wish to scan should be between 40 centimeters to 4 meters (16 inches to 13 feet) away from the sensor. Note that scan data quality is reduced as the distance from the sensor increases.

Why is it so difficult to scan outdoors?

The sensors project and read an infrared pattern. Sunlight greatly inhibits the sensor's ability to detect this pattern. Either wait for a cloudy day, or preferably, scan the object indoors if possible.

The software supports four sensors, but why are only one or two sensors working at any one time?

This is most likely a limitation of the USB controller in your computer. If you have two sensors, try plugging one into a USB port at the back of your computer and one in the front. You may also want to add another PCI USB adapter to plug in additional sensors. Note that you will also need a quad-core CPU or higher to handle the data throughput of four sensors connected simultaneously.

When two sensors are pointed at the same object, why is the scan quality affected?

Each sensor projects a unique infrared pattern. When they are pointed at the same object, the patterns overlap, which can result in missing or erroneous data. Try to keep the sensors pointed in such a way that they are each scanning a unique set of data.

Why don't I see live video playing in the live video feed(s)?

The sensor may have become disconnected from its own adapter, the computer's USB port, and/or the electrical outlet. If you've determined that the sensor has been unplugged in any way, plug the sensor back in, then select the Settings tab at the top of the screen and select "Reconnect".

At what resolution do the sensors capture?

Both Kinect for Windows and Kinect for Xbox 360 capture color RGB data at 1280x960 and depth data at 640x480. Xtion PRO LIVE captures color RGB data at 1280x1024 and depth data at 640x480. Xtion PRO captures depth data at 640x480 and has no color RGB camera.

Does KScan3D capture texture maps?

Each time you capture a scan with either Kinect sensor or Xtion PRO LIVE, color data is captured along with 3D data. Color data is not captured when using Xtion PRO, since that sensor does not have a color RGB camera.

Why am I having difficulty scanning an object?

Some surfaces are difficult to scan. These include dark objects, translucent materials, and shiny surfaces. Ordinarily, glass and chrome are difficult if not impossible to scan properly. The object may appear to be within scanning range, but has black areas in the live view windows and the scanned meshes have holes in the black areas. If the object you wish to scan can be painted, use a matte white or medium-gray spray paint to cover the object. In order to ensure that the surface retains its original shape, paint only in very light coats. For non-permanent coverage, you can use Tinactin powder spray or a foot powder spray. Test the spray on an inconspicuous area of the object to be sure that the spray does not damage the surface of the object.

What's the best way to scan a person?

Here are some tips that should help you achieve a good scan of a person.

First, it's best to have nice, even ambient lighting in the room, especially in terms of capturing good texture / vertex color data.

Assuming the person will be standing, it's best if s/he stands away from walls, furniture, or other equipment, for two reasons:

One, these objects can interfere with the automatic mesh alignment process if they're part of the scan captures. If necessary, you may want to adjust the Z Range slider to the left in order to crop away any background data.

Two, you'll be moving around the person with the sensor. If your computer is relatively far away from the person, you might want to use a USB 2.0 extension cable.

During the scanning process, you want to be up close with the sensor, about as close as you can get before the images in the live feed(s) start clipping out. You might be tempted to capture as much of the person as possible with each scan, but keep in mind the quality of the data decreases with distance, and the ability for KScan3D to automatically align meshes will also be affected. So make sure the Z Minimum slider is all the way to the left and get in close to capture the best detail.

For scanning people, a good workflow to use is the "Capture Only" method. See the "Rapid Point Cloud Capture" section: http://manual.kscan3d.com/1.0/index.php/Scanning_an_Object.

Keep in mind you can capture several groups of scans at a time. So if you capture say 50 scans and get about half of the person, you can press the SCAN button again and capture another 50 scans of the other half. Just make sure the person is holding as still as possible throughout the entire process.

Here's one important tip regarding the automatic mesh alignment process that happens when you press the Build button in the Point Cloud Meshing panel. If you see that the scans aren't aligning properly, you can abort the process, combine the properly aligned meshes, then continue the process with the remaining point clouds and then combine those. Then, once you've got two or more groups of combined meshes, you can manually rotate each group and align it with the first group by pressing the Align button, then combine the groups into one single group.

Also remember that you can manually align individual meshes that haven't automatically aligned properly. Just make sure these meshes or point clouds are unlocked first so you can move and rotate them, then press the Align button and they should align with the other aligned meshes.

Why is there a shift in color texture in my scans?

Some sensors require color offset modification due to hardware changes from the manufacturer.

When the mesh and the color texture don't match, go into the Device tab. You will see an advanced variable called "TextureShiftY". Change the value so that it is between -32 and +32 to adjust the texture position. (You can increase by increments of eight, which makes it easier to figure out the correct position.)

This value could be different for each device, so make sure to double-check on each sensor.


Alignment Questions

Does KScan3D align captured 3D meshes automatically?

Yes. During the scanning process, you can choose to have KScan3D automatically align the current captured mesh with previously captured meshes. Scans should be captured with sufficiently overlapping data in order for KScan3D to properly align meshes. To save time, you can turn off automatic alignment and align the meshes after you've completed the scanning process.

Why did the automatic alignment process fail?

Scans with little distinguishing geometry and/or large flat surfaces may not provide sufficient data for the automatic alignment feature to work properly. While scanning, try to ensure that there is plenty of overlapping and unique data. If you are moving the Kinect around an object, try not to do it too quickly. In certain cases, such as scanning a cylinder, it may be necessary to place other objects in the scene, which act as "anchor points" during the alignment phase. Once the object has been completely aligned and combined, the extra scan data can be deleted.

Editing Questions

What editing capabilities are featured in KScan3D?

KScan3D allows you to uniformly smooth, erode, and decimate meshes. Unneeded data points may be selected and deleted. Meshes may also be locked to prevent further editing and reverted to original states if desired.

How does the decimation algorithm work?

KScan3D features an intelligent decimation algorithm that prioritizes the removal of vertices at the low-curvature and flat areas of the mesh, leaving vertex detail where it is needed most.

Does KScan3D provide vertex/edge/polygon editing capabilities?

Aside from the ability to select and delete vertices, KScan3D does not provide any advanced vertex/edge/polygon sub-object editing capabilities such as move, scale, extrude, etc. This sort of mesh editing can be accomplished with 3D modeling programs such as Maya, 3ds Max, Blender, Houdini, AutoCAD, and others.

Combining Questions

What is "combining"?

Combining is the process by which KScan3D gathers all of the selected meshes, performs a fine alignment, and creates a bundled mesh that is ready to be finalized.

How do I combine meshes?

First, ensure that you have scanned and aligned at least two meshes. Next, ensure that the meshes you wish to combine are loaded by checking the checkbox next to each mesh thumbnail. Then, hold the CTRL key on your keyboard and select the meshes you wish to combine. Finally, select the Combine button at the top of the screen.

Why is the combine function not working?

The combine process requires that two or more meshes be scanned, loaded, and selected. Make sure that you have done so before selecting the Combine button.

I've combined my meshes but I want to perform some additional edits before I finalize the mesh. How can I uncombine the combined meshes? First select the combined mesh, then select the Uncombine button at the top of the screen. The combined mesh will be separated into individual meshes.

Finalization Questions

What is "finalization"?

Finalization is the process by which KScan3D uses a combined mesh to create a unified mesh that is ready for export.

How do I finalize a mesh?

To finalize a mesh, select a combined mesh, then select the Finalize button at the top of the screen. A menu will appear with sliders that allow you to change the density and hole-filling parameters of the finalized mesh. Once you have selected your preferred settings, select the OK button and the mesh will be finalized.

Export Questions

What file formats does KScan3D export?

KScan3D can export files in .fbx, .ply, .obj, .stl, .asc, and .3d3 formats.

Why do the meshes exported in .obj and .stl formats contain no color information?

The .obj and .stl formats do not store color information. If you require vertex color information, please export meshes using the .fbx or .ply formats.

What is the resolution of the 3D data that KScan3D exports?

Final meshes can be finalized and exported in a variety of custom resolutions. For reference, the high-resolution mesh of the model featured in our Gallery has been exported with 1,569,639 vertices and 3,129,251 faces. Meshes can be significantly decimated as needed prior to and during the finalization process, if desired.

Does KScan3D export texture maps?

KScan3D can export a texture map with UV coordinates when exporting a single scan in some formats. However, KScan3D does not export texture maps when exporting finalized meshes. For more information about exporting data, see http://manual.kscan3d.com/1.0/index.php/Exporting_Data.

How can I get higher resolution scans?

If you determine that KScan3D doesn't provide you with adequate 3D scan data, you may be interested in our line of professional software and hardware products, including FlexScan3D and HDI Advance 3D scanning systems. For more information, please visit http://www.3d3solutions.com.


Kinect For Windows V2

How can I connect more than one V2 sensors?

Partially due to the higher bandwidth requirements of the new sensor, it appears that only one Kinect For Windows v2 sensor can be used on a single computer.

Which SDK do I need to run the V2?

Users should download Kinect For Windows SDK v2.0.1410(http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=44561). Please note that the SDK requires Windows 8/8.1.


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