Digital Impression

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           The Medit i500 is one of the latest newcomers on the intraoral scanner market. It touts itself as the 'easy entry into digital dentistry' and is one of the most affordable when compared to other scanners from big names such as 3Shape, CEREC, Carestream Dental, Planmeca etc. It may be affordable, but does it deliver in terms of performance?

Before we dive into the pros and cons of the system, first let's go over the company background. Medit is a Korean digital imaging company that was founded in 2000 as a 3D scanner company for the industrial sector. They have since released several dental products such as the Medit T-series lab scanners. Their latest product, the i500, is an intraoral scanner that was released in late 2018 and has started making waves in the industry worldwide. At a price tag of only $18,000 USD and boasting no annual fees this is proving to be desirable for many dentists. Update: a subscription model has been announced for the Medit i500, this primarily focuses around the cloud storage. Click here to read more.

         A crucial distinction to make when compared to the CEREC, 3Shape and Planmeca scanners, is that these systems offer a complete CAD/CAM workflow with associated design software and CAD integration through their chairside software. The Medit i500 is just a scanner. It has no associated design software, and on its own, it is only used to scan and export scans. If you are looking to scan and send to labs, this may be exactly what you are after. However, if you want to carry out the entire digital workflow in-house (which we recommend), then you will need to investigate and learn about third party mills and CAD design software such as Exocad.

Scanning Speed  
              The i500 is truly an impressive intraoral scanner. It is fast, clear and easy to use. It easily competes with some of the more expensive scanners on the market. When using the scanner it is positioned slightly differently to others such as the TRIOS, being held much closer to the tooth surfaces. The scanning protocol is identical across all scanners, therefore for us, using it was simple.  When scanning the i500 has a realistic high-definition, colour aesthetic.

Some things that stood out when using the i500 was how quick it was to find its place again when the scan is paused and restarted again. Overall it's a smooth scanning experience. Scanning across the midline between quadrants don't seem to take much effort whereas for other scanners this can require stopping and starting a few times. 

Like all other scanners, interproximal areas typically require a few touch-ups after the main scan is done to catch all the data if needed. The scanner is used without scanning powder. This is no longer a bonus but a requirement with modern scanners. The i500 overall does well without powder but very shiny surfaces seem to give it a little trouble requiring multiple overlaps or a light scan spray to collect all the information. Overall, we were impressed with the scanner as a whole, especially for its price point.

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