How to equip a 3D photo studio

All questions, connected with 3D product photos, their usage in e-commerce, and tasks, which can be completed by online shop content filling are discussed in article, dedicated to 3D photo. Here we want to dwell on the question, which kind of equipment we need to create product 3D photos, and how to organize a 3D photo studio and the shooting process itself.

A minimal set of equipment for a 3D product photo  

In general, equipment is the same as by the regular still-life photography, except only for a turntable. We definitely need:

  • Canon, Nikon or Pentax SLR camera
  • PC or laptop
  • Photomechanics Photo Arm
  • Photomechanics turntable

This is a minimal set, which allows to create 3D photos fast, to save them for further posting on websites, to add them to Power Point presentations. For features click here.

Lighting types

To create 3D photo examples for our website, we used permanent lighting (video light). Some 3D photos are made using flashes. For 3D photography both, pulsed and permanent lighting can be used. Each alternative has its own advantages and disadvantages.

Pulsed light advantages (flashes):

  • More familiar for most photographers
  • It’s cheaper, than the video light of the same capacity
  • If you have had a regular non-3D photo studio before, you likely have pulsed light.  

Pulsed light disadvantages:

  • To make a 3D photo, it’s necessary to take a lot of shots in a row, that’s why eyes get tired
  • Inexpensive studio flashes don’t give stable impulses, which change from frame to frame. In 3D photography it results in lightning level changes during rotation.

Permanent light advantages (video light):

  • It lacks the disadvantages of pulsed light
  • You see, how the object will look like on the photo at once, what makes adjustment easier

Permanent light disadvantages:

  • Shooting big-size objects, a lot of powerful and quite expensive lighting sources is needed

Background

We recommend you to acquire a lightbox (photobox), which allows to create even object lightning, optimal in most 3D photography cases. Photomechanics RD-60 turntable fits a cube with a 60cm or a 80cm side.  For RD-33 a cube with a 40 or 50 cm size is better. Lightbox is quite cheap. 

If you want to experience different lightning schemes for 3D photo shooting, then use a usual acrylic object table instead of a lightbox. For big-size objects shooting, the background needs to be unrolled. There are many background fastening systems and backgrounds on the market. Standard object tables, backgrounds and fastening systems are also quite inexpensive.

Optional equipment

The chosen optional equipment depends on the photo studio profile. In some cases you may need no optional equipment. Discuss with our professionals, what else you may need for your business. 

To optimize the 3D photo creation, cataloging and publication process, we recommend you to take into account following options: