3D scanner is a data acquiring device. There are multiple data types involved in 3D scanning and users may be confused by all the filename extensions. What is an ASC file? Which file should I export into other software? In this post, we will discuss all file types which involve Einscan software.
There are a total of 6 types of output data format (ASC, p3, STL, PLY, OBJ, 3MF) that you can export from EinScan software during data capture and generating mesh. We will explain the differences among these 6 file types in this blog.
Point Cloud Data Format
When you have finished your scan and are ready to generate a point cloud, you can click on the save button to save the point cloud data as an ASC file and the marker position as p3 format when markers are detected.
ASC file contains position information of each point in the point cloud. This file type can be opened in most scan data processing software and metrology software like Meshmixer, GOM Inspect, and Geomagic Essentials.
The P3 file is for marker reuse purposes in EinScan software. For a large object scan, the user can scan all markers only first and save the marker frame as a p3 file. Later the object can be scanned part by part in a separate project using the same p3 file as a reference which improves the accuracy and will require no alignment between each project.
With Fix scan mode each scan data will be saved as separate files, while for handheld scan the full point cloud will be saved as one file.
Meshed Data File Format
After the data is meshed, more saving options will be available. ASC file is still available while the mesh can be saved as STL, PLY, OBJ, or 3MF files.
STL file is the most common mesh data type. It only contains the position and normal directions of all triangles in the mesh. This file type can be opened by mesh editing software and many CAD software like Solid Edge for reverse engineering.
PLY and OBJ files contain mesh texture information in addition to the STL file. Users can export these data types for digital documentation and online model display purpose.
3MF file is the 3D printing format published by the 3MF Consortium. This format includes information about materials, colors, and other information that cannot be represented in the STL format. Windows system and other CAD software can open this mesh format.
Post Processing Data
EinScan software provides basic functions for mesh editing in Post Processing and Measurement sections. Usually, users use these functions right after meshing data. However, external mesh data can also be imported into the EinScan software for editing. The EinScan software supports STL, OBJ, and PLY format for post processing and measurement.
The project group folder contains different kinds of files. The project group directory links all projects in the group. The project directory links all data files belonging to this project and the rest are project data files. When moving the project group, the user needs to move all the folders in the project group.
When opening the project, the user needs to locate the folder where the project group was saved and open the corresponding directory files.
So that's it! You have 6 output formats to choose from and all the associated files of your project will be saved in a project group folder. Remember, these file sizes are large, so make sure you secure a space on your PC where you can save the files.
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