2.11. Exporting the finished model

This section explains how to export your model for viewing outside 3DSOM Pro

Using the ID_EXPORT.jpgExport model... button or File > Export... menu item, models can be exported into the following formats

Figure 2.11.1. The 3DSOM Pro Export Window

Many of the output formats create several different files. During export, you will be prompted before overwriting any existing files. Cancelling will cancel the export but may leave some already exported files in the chosen directory.

Export dialog options

"Use current orientation": this checkbox can be used to rotate the model so that it appears initially to be facing the same was as it is currently displayed in the View Model Window.

"Texture quality": controls the size of the texture map by changing the compression at the expense of reducing the texture quality - this is a value between 1 (lowest quality) and 100 (highest quality).

"Geometry quality": When available, this is a value between 1 (lowest quality, smallest size) and 100 (highest quality, largest size).

"Auto-launch viewer": when this checkbox is selected, 3DSOM Pro will attempt to open the exported file in an external application. The file associations setup with the operating system determine which applications (if any) are chosen.

"Launch using test browser with local file access": when this checkbox is selected in conjuction with "Auto-launch viewer" then an appropriate test browser is used instead of the default web browser. This ensures JavaScript has local file access for viewing webGL content locally. Note that once your model is uploaded to your website, a standard browser can be used to view the model.

2.11.1. Export for webGL

This option exports the model in a proprietary format together with a Javascript viewer that can be embedded into web pages for viewing the model on any webGL enabled browser. WebGL is a feature of many modern browsers on desktops and mobile devices and is gaining in popularity.

Several files are produced by this export option:

All the files except the HTML file are stored in a subfolder with the "_files" suffix. (e.g. exporting "myModel.htm" will store the data files in the folder "myModel_files"). You are free to redistrubute the files but should not modify the viewer ".js" file without permission.

As well as the standard quality settings there is an options dialog available from the Options... button. From this, you can set the background colour and default material type if you have not explicitly created additional material channels using the new Model Tools > Texture Channels menu.

The 3DSOM Pro webGL Viewer chapter describes in more detail how to use the 3DSOM Pro webGL viewer.

TIP:

If you have a Dropbox account - simply export your webGL model to your Dropbox "Public" folder. You can then use the "copy public link" item from the right-mouse menu in your Dropbox folder (on desktop or logged in via your browser). You can then share your model via the public link copied to the clipboard.

2.11.2. Export in Collada

This option exports the model to a file suitable for reading by many 3D modelling applications. The following files are produced by this export option:

Note the DAE and texture map images should be kept together in the same folder.

As well as the standard settings you can also specify the material ambient and specular colour from the Options... button, if you haven't created additional texture channels.

2.11.3. Export in OBJ

This option exports the model to a file suitable for reading by many 3D modelling applications. The following files are produced by this export option:

You can export a wireframe model and edit using a 3D modeling application, before importing for texturing.

2.11.4. Export for 3DS - 3D Studio Max

This option exports the model to a file suitable for reading by 3D Studio Max. The following files are produced by this export option:

You can export a wireframe model and edit using 3D Studio MAX before importing for texturing.

2.11.5. Exporting for X3D

These options export the model to X3D format for viewing directly with a X3D viewer or for importing into other applications. Two files are produced by this export option: