Scanning question

What is the difference between scan strength and scan deviation?

And given a choice between enhancing the two which is better to have more of?


Select excerpts:

Probes have three attributes that effect scan results: sensor strength (higher is better), maximum deviation (lower is better) and base scan range.

The article doesn’t lay this out explicitly, but scan strength determines the ‘difficulty’ threshold your probes can scan. Higher strength on probe scanning allows players to scan more difficult objects, like player ships with very low signature radius and high-tier cosmic signatures.

Maximum Deviation

The deviation is the distance between the scan result shown on the map and the actual location of your target.

In other words: how accurate the displayed location of the target is on your map, and this how fast it is to find the accurate location when scanning down.

(Edit because my brain linked the wrong concept in on deviation).


Given the choice, I would pick scan strength.

With a high scan deviation you’re more certain about the location of the sig, so you can zoom in faster. Instead of going from 8 AU to 4 AU and then 2 AU, you could skip one step (or even two) allowing you to spend less time scanning.

With high scan strength you will more easily get a high scan result. This means you know faster what a sig is so you can skip the ones you’re not interested in (combat sites when you’re looking for relics, for example). You also may not need to zoom in all the way to the end at 0.5 and 0.25 AU to get a warpable result. So this too means you spend less time scanning.

As you will need a minimum amount of strength to scan down certain sites, scan strength is more important.

Scan deviation is nice to have. Scan acquisition likewise, as it also saves you time. So if you happen to have ‘enough’ scan strength, you can speed up your scanning process by also having deviation and acquisition.