View Full Version : will scanned objects pay good ?

11-24-2009, 03:05 PM
Dear Lightwave friends:

I was just thinking: what If I would buy a personal scanner like the microscribe, and scan quality objects for sale to lightwave animators ?
Would this pay good money ? Or would it be a complete waste of time and money ?
I just remembered a long time ago, Viewpoint offered a great collection of 3d models, but they costed like an arm and a leg.
If I create a high quality collection of 3d models, all scanned with microscribe, would I stand a chance of making decent money ?
Please tell me what you think...
And If I can not make any money off it...wouldn't it be good to scan high quality objects to use in my personal lightwave animations ?
Please help !!!


11-25-2009, 12:32 AM
Scanned objects converted to 3D are typically very high poly counts, far far more polygons than an object needs, which will tax your system resources as well as drastically increase render times. They're not optimized at all, so they're generally not well-suited for animations.

Then again, you could scan your object, then retopologize it into a low resolution version, and use the high resolution version to create normal and/or displacement maps to apply to the low res version to give the impression of the detail that the high res version has. Lightwave can use objects like that a bit more effectively, but has no built-in tools of its own for actually doing the retopologizing or map baking, so you'd need another program capable of that.

As for if you could make money off it, you never know. Depends on how good and useful the objects are. Personally I just make my own stuff, aside from people and real life animals, but I suppose you could try to sell at Turbosquid or similar 3D outlets. I wouldn't limit it to only LightWave format though, and I think the standards are FBX, Collada, .max, .ma, and .obj for file formats. Sadly, LW seems to be in its own lonely little niche these days...

That being said, I imagine it's conceivable that you could run into legal issues making perfect reproductions of real world objects that you don't hold the design copyright for or have permission, but I'm not a lawyer. That's something I would think worth looking into before trying though.

I believe scanning is designed more for the mechanical/CAD/prototyping field, than consumer level/animation fields, although there might be a market for it in product visualization using client's actual products.

11-25-2009, 03:48 AM
last time i looked at microscribe [1999] it was a data input device, so was very manual intensive, time intensive to 'scan' or data input a model from the arm and foot contollers...thesedays there are auto rotating laser scanners for around the same price that can scan in a few mins compared to a few days..of course the microscribe can scan much larger items due to it's arm..also looked to me that you really needed to mark out your model before you scan it so the point cloud wasn't a mess with duplicated/missing points of reference.

when i looked back in 1999 there were plugins for 3dsmax so you scanned straight into 'your app' rathe than just make point cloud data in their app and exported.

we're also seeig photo/camera scanners in the lower end that can deliver pretty good results too such as realviz and image modeler to name a few.

research is the key...and that also means contacts for prospective customers as well as a good retopology tool to turn tht scan into something more useful.

if i were you 'd reseach the subject pretty deep and see if there is a market for such point cloud based models