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I am trying to create a process to identify road defects manually from Lidar. We have Erdas 2013, ArcGIS10.1 and Global Mappper 14.2 as options for paid software.

So far Merrick Mars displays the data the best but (the free version) does not allow one to draw polygons.

enter image description here

With ESRI the best I could get is enter image description here

Unfortunately you can't zoom any further to view defects.

With ERDAS the best I could get is enter image description here

With Global Mapper the best I could get is enter image description here I can manually assign a color to each range of elevation but this is very cumbersome.

So any ideas on what I am doing wrong? how can I get a similar view to Mars in any of the other software?

I need to then create a polygon around each road defect.

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You could use Fledermaus: http://geotools.csc.noaa.gov/program/Previous%20Programs/presentations/GeoTools%20pdfs/F13%20Lockhart.pdf, it may help you. In case you want to tune finely in order to enhance details, a good software for that is GMT (Generic Mapping Tools): http://www.lidarnews.com/content/view/8970/136/, this one is quite powerful but the learning curve is a bit steep, but I think you can manage it after several basic examples explained in its manual. Also, this one is free.

Hope this helps,

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