3DF Zephyr Development Status Progress – Dragonfruit – Part 1

posted in: News

The next 3DF Zephyr update (codename Dragonfruit) will be a very major one, in fact, Dragonfruit will be 3DF Zephyr 5.0 – with this post, we’d like to share some news about what’s coming in the next months.

What is 3DF Zephyr 5.0 about?

You may have noticed this update is taking a little longer than usual. As we published many minor improvements in the 4.5x branch, we have been continually working on version 5.0 in the meantime, and the upcoming release is certainly the biggest tech update we have ever published so far. During the next weeks, as we get closer to a beta stage, we will discuss more in detail some of these aspects with more development status progress updates: we are sure you will love the new update and we can’t wait to tell you all about it.

3DF Zephyr 5.0 – better, faster, stronger

With every update, Zephyr is becoming progressively better, and 5.0 is no exception. Aside from the usual minor improvements you will notice in the general experience, this release will be significantly faster due to many important technology updates that have been in development for quite a long time.

We know and understand how quality and accuracy are your first concern – however, we also know how speed is something everyone has to factor in. This is why this release not only it improves the overall quality of the 3D reconstruction, but is also focused on becoming much, much faster, and capable of running bigger datasets with much less resources.

Among the main pipeline improvements, 3DF Zephyr 5.0 will also introduce:

  • Significant Structure from Motion improvements: the new and improved Samantha, our Structure from Motion technology, is getting much, much faster, especially when benchmarked with huge datasets. The speedup is very significant and noticeable as you increase the number of pictures. While also small datasets (for example, few hundreds photos) will be slightly faster to be processed on 5.0 compared to 4.5x, bigger datasets (lets say, 1000 photos and above) are significantly faster to process, with no drawbacks on the accuracy and robustness of the algorithm.
  • Significant meshing improvements: the new and improved Sasha is becoming out of core, which means that loading/unloading data for the mesh will be done in an optimized way. This not only saves a lot of ram (which also translates in allowing computers with a lower amount of memory to compute bigger datasets) but also gives faster processing times. The new photoconsistency based mesh optimization is also much, much faster, removing probably the biggest bottleneck in the current 4.5 release. Quality improvements will also extract more sharp detail than before.
  • Other technology improvements: the full pipeline has been optimized in general, allowing for faster processing overall in sfm – stereo – meshing.

Introducing 3DF Scarlet

Bundled at no additional cost with 3DF Zephyr (Pro/Aerial at this time) this new software from 3Dflow SRL is a standalone application for laser scanner registration. Zephyr has been capable of laser scan handling for years now, and the first one to support native laser scan formats in a photogrammetry package. With Scarlet, this is still true, however there are many differences that justify the need for a new software.

A dedicated standalone software allows you to have separate projects for your laser scanner data, with the native integration in Zephyr, which ensures a smooth and organized workflow.

The new registration workflow is perfect to handle even the most difficult scenario, and best of all, 3DF Scarlet is optimized for laser scanner datasets, allowing visualization and registration of huge point clouds.

With 3DF Scarlet, manual and automatic registration in a user-friendly dedicated environment will empower your laser scanner workflow, making laser scan data management super easy, barely an inconvenience.

What’s next?

In the upcoming week we will unveil and discuss more about 3DF Zephyr 5.0, with more details on the technology improvements as well as new tools that we have not announced yet – in the meantime, make sure to join our community so you won’t miss any new update!