Working with Canvas Scanner Device

Just found out about Canvas a scanner device you attach to an iPad that allows you to capture a room interior as an array of data points that can be turned into ($29 charge) a SketchUp CAD file. Wondering if anyone has tried it out and how it’s working. Thanks.

I saw this demonstrated briefly at the recent 3D Basecamp in Palm Springs. I found the technology to be impressive. I understand that for scans of moderately sized interior spaces, apparently somewhere in the range of 500 square feet or the roughly equivalent metric area, the scanner is reliably accurate.

I’ve never tried one, but I’ve seen reviews on Youtube. The device seems awesome, but doesn’t make highly detailed models. I think you’d have to redraw what it captures, but it’s extremely useful for generating textured reference models.

Watching their videos it looks like you can link rooms together into a single CAD file of a larger building. Not sure how big the raw files are. Apparently you send them the file (plus $29 and wait a day or so for the SketchUp or .dwg file.
As to accuracy, I have spent a lot of time measuring and modeling existing structures that are going to be remodeled. For most purposes and as a practical matter, accuracy within two or three inches is sufficient for the conceptual phase.
So just curious if it is a good bit of gear that will save time and tedium.

I expect the current technology to be improved over time. The Canvas Scanner now on the market can be a valuable resource in the arsenal of architects, designers and other technicians, particularly as related to performing existing conditions documentation in the field.

I’ve been interested in this device too.

At 3D Basecamp, I attended the session on scanning with high end devices, and that’s just what they do. There’s a plugin from Undet that allows you to import point clouds into SU. Once there, all they did was trace over it while building a model, not unlike working with Match Photo. I posted some pics in this thread here.

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From the Canvas website I get the idea that they have an algorithm that coverts the point cloud into a Sketchup vector drawing and you are ready to roll. Like to know if that’s factual.

There is a thread here on the forum somewhere:

You get back a regular SketchUp model. Yes can stitch rooms together to offer complete floor plan. Can be very accurate. You don’t need to trace unless you want to. Tracing is only any good on smaller details as SketchUp does not handle high poly models well. So trying to import and manipulate and trace a room is impractical due to SU capabilities rather than anything else.
The scan to cad service is very good and the models layered up fairly usefully.
The native format of the scanner when sent to your machine from the iPad is .obj format not a point cloud.
I have used the scanner and canvas for nearly 2 years now and I use it on every survey. I don’t necessarily use the scan to cad service as I am using the scanner in conjunction with a measured survey etc. The raw .obj scanned model is VERY accurate one you have mastered the physical scanning procedure.
Let me know if you have any questions.


Thanks, that sounds good, certainly good enough for my purposes. Likely to wait till I have a project and a particular need before springing for the hardware.

Well, I do have a concern. If you scan multiple rooms to put them together in larger structure, are you paying $29 to convert each scan. That would add up rather quickly.

Yes it can do, ultimately it’s not a huge amount say 120 bucks for a floor. It’s all that time saved that is worth that and more