How to use Structure Sensor with Skanect

Using the Uplink feature in the Structure app lets you wirelessly stream 3D data from a Structure Sensor to Skanect running on a laptop or desktop PC.

The Structure app’s Uplink feature lets you wirelessly stream 3D data from a Structure Sensor to a laptop or desktop machine running Skanect.

Using the Structure Sensor with Skanect makes it incredibly easy for nearly anyone to capture, refine and share high-quality 3D scans of people and objects. Here’s how to get started:

First, download and install Skanect on your Mac or Windows PC from http://skanect.occipital.com/download. Need a Structure Sensor? Get one now at http://structure.io.

Next, choose how you will transmit 3D data from your Structure Sensor to your Mac or Windows PC running Skanect. You can use the USB Hacker Cable to connect your Structure Sensor directly (however, you will only receive monochromatic scans), or you can connect your Structure Sensor to an Apple iPad to stream 3D data wirelessly. We recommend using a compatible Apple iPad to enable wireless streaming of 3D data with color textures.

Option 1: Wireless Streaming Using an Apple iPad and the Uplink Feature

Before you begin: You’ll need a compatible Apple iPad: iPad Air, iPad Air 2, iPad mini 2 or mini 3, or iPad with Retina display (4th Generation). You’ll need to download the Structure app to your iPad from the App Store. If you want to enable color scanning, you will also need to download the Structure Sensor Calibrator app. Finally, you’ll need to make sure that your iPad and the Mac or PC you use for Skanect are on the same WiFi network. For best results, we recommend using a 5Ghz router and selecting a channel with little or no competing network traffic.

Using Uplink wireless streaming with the Structure Sensor, Apple iPad and Skanect:

  1. If you want to enable color scanning, launch the Calibrator app on your iPad to calibrate your Structure Sensor with the iPad color camera. More instructions on how to use it can be found here. This step is only needed the first time, or if you detect that depth/color alignment is getting bad (e.g. after removing/reinserting the bracket several times, or if the bracket moved during transportation).
  2. Launch Skanect on your PC or Mac
  3. Launch the Structure app on your iPad and swipe up on the right hand menu to find and press ‘Uplink’
  4. Find a suitable object or person to scan, and press the “Rec” button on the iPad’s touchscreen
  5. You’ll now see that what you’re capturing on your iPad will be mirrored in the Skanect interface on your Mac or PC
  6. Walk around the object you are scanning until you have completed capturing all of it
  7. Press the “Stop” button on the iPad’s touchscreen
  8. You can now refine, save and export your 3D scan in Skanect
  9. For more tips on using Skanect, visit http://skanect.occipital.com/support/
  10. For more tips on 3D scanning using the Structure Sensor, visit http://structure.io/getstarted and download the Getting Started Tutorial

Option 2: Wired Connection with USB Hacker Cable (Monochromatic 3D Scans)

Apple Mac (OS X):

  1. Connect the Structure Sensor to your Mac using the USB Hacker Cable
  2. Launch Skanect on your Mac

Windows PC:

  1. Install the correct OpenNI drivers
  2. Connect the Structure Sensor to your Windows PC using the USB Hacker Cable
  3. Launch Skanect on your Windows PC

Finally, if you’d like to experience 3D scanning using the Structure Sensor entirely on device (no external PC or Mac required), check out the Scanner sample app. iOS developers can find it now in the Structure SDK, and non-developers can request it by sending a quick message to structure <at> occipital <dot> com.