Yours for $1,400: First Desktop 3D Scanner goes on Sale

Mike O'Brien

A desktop machine that can rapidly scan objects so they can be replicated using a 3D printer went on sale to the general public on Thursday.

The Makerbot Digitizer costs $1,400. The first buyers can expect to receive them in October.

The device is designed to allow the replication of objects without the user having to learn any 3D modeling software or have any great technological expertise.

The Digitizer works by pointing several lasers at the object and detecting contours in the surface.

Having scanned an object, users can then upload their designs directly 3D sharing website Thingiverse.

According to the BBC, demand for the scanner appeared to overload the company's online store on Thursday.

The Digitizer is the latest product to bring 3D printing to mainstream technology users.

On Makerbot’s website, it says the scanner is for "early adopters, experimenters, and visionaries who want to be pioneers in Desktop 3D Scanning."

It adds: "This includes, but is not limited to, architects, designers, creative hobbyists, educators, and artists."

However, Makerbot clearly states that the scanner is not suitable for intricate designs and that users should not expect "too much" from it.

Thje Digitizer’s FAQ page says: "Expectations should be realistic. You will not be able to, for example, scan a hamburger and then eat the digital design."

The development of 3D technologies will be the focus of IDGA’s Additive Manufacturing for Government summit in December. For full details, go to