HP's Z 3D Camera attaches to your PC and lets you scan 3D objects

Back in 2014, HP announced the Sprout, a new form factor of an all-in-one PC. It had an overhead projector with cameras on it, and in lieu of a keyboard, it had a touch-sensitive mat. At CES last year, the company introduced the second-generation model, calling it the Sprout Pro and adding 3D scanning capabilities.

Needless to say, the Sprout form factor hasn't exactly gone mainstream, but for this year's CES, HP is taking some of the device's functionality and putting it in a peripheral that can be attached to any PC. The Z 3D Camera attaches to the back of any monitor with a flat back via a magnetic badge.

With the new device, users can scan 3D objects to create life-like digital images, and export them to PowerPoint, Paint 3D, or Mixed Reality Viewer. HP says that users will "relish the power of HP Z 3D Camera" when working in products such as ZBrush, Substance Painter, and products from Autodesk.

The Z 3D Camera can scan 2D documents as well, which can be exported as searchable Adobe PDFs.

"The demand for 3D content has skyrocketed and 3D pros are constantly looking for new hardware and software innovations to increase their end-to-end productivity, from concepting to production," said Louis Kim, global head of Immersive Computing, Personal Systems, HP Inc. "HP Z 3D Camera helps speed up modeling, reinvent the creative palette and protect the artistic point of view as more people enter the profession and workflows become increasingly automated."

The company also announced a range of new monitors today, which come in sizes of 21.5, 23, 23.8, 25, and 27 inches. The new screens promise narrow bezels for an "edge-to-edge" experience, and they all have 1080p resolution with AMD FreeSync technology. Naturally, you can hook your Z 3D Camera onto one of those.

HP says that the Z 3D Camera is designed and manufactured in California. It will be available exclusively in the United States this March, with a price tag of $599. The new monitors will range in price from $99 to $229, and those will be available on April 15.

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