2.1. Tour of the 3DSOM Pro user interface

A typical view of 3DSOM Pro is shown in Figure 2.1.1. To try out the basic features in this tour, start 3DSOM Pro then choose File > Open... menu item and select the vase.som project from the Examples/Vase directory installed with the application. You should now see the same view.

Figure 2.1.1. 3DSOM Pro interface with the View Model Window selected.

The upper half of the window includes a standard Windows menubar and the main toolbar and the Thumbnail Window. The lower half of the window displays either the Edit Masks Window, or the View Model Window depending on the currently selected tab. On the left of the selected window are the associated tools and settings. Across the bottom, a status bar displays help about the currently selected tool and information about the current project. Each of these elements is described below.


Click and drag the horizontal bar below the Thumbnail Window up and down to alter how much screen is used to display the thumbnails.

2.1.1. The status bar

The status bar is shown across the bottom of the 3DSOM Pro window. You can toggle whether it is displayed or not from View > Status Bar menu item.


To quickly find out what a button does, hover over the button with the mouse to see a brief tooltip displayed. Also look at the help text displayed at the left side of the status bar for further details.

At the right of the status bar are a series of fields describing the current project, including:

2.1.2. The main toolbar and "GO" button

This toolbar is used to perform all major operations on the 3DSOM Pro project. You can toggle whether it is displayed or not from View > Toolbar menu item. Clicking ID_MAKE_ALL.jpgMake all button (also known as the "GO" button) will guide you through building a new project from scratch. If the images have been pre-masked then this will construct a textured 3D model with no further user input required.

Each of the buttons in the toolbar is described in more detail in The main toolbar reference section.

2.1.3. The Thumbnail Window

This area of the interface is used to manipulate the images that are associated with the current 3DSOM Project. The images are displayed as thumbnails by default but can be shown as a list with detailed information about each image by selecting the ID_VIEW_REPORT.jpgView image details button.


In thumbnail mode, detailed information for an image is displayed as a tooltip when you hover over the thumbnail.

Most operations from the Main Menu > Images menu, such as Images > Delete Images menu item, are performed on the currently selected set of thumbnails. Images can be selected by clicking them or dragging a selection rectangle around them and the SHIFT and CTRL keys can be used to add to or remove from the current selection as usual.


Double-clicking on a thumbnail is a shortcut for the Images > Edit Mask menu item and loads the image into the Edit Masks Window.

All the operations available in the Thumbnail Window together with descriptions of the information held for each image, are described fully in The Thumbnail Window reference section.

2.1.4. The Edit Masks Window

Use this view to look at and edit the mask for a single view. You can zoom into the mask to see the detail using the tools in the Edit Masks toolbar.


If you are zoomed into the mask, you can move around the image either using the scrollbars or by switching to the ID_PAN.jpgPan image button tool. Hold down SPACE to temporarily switch to the pan tool and drag the mouse to move, then release SPACE to return to the previous tool.

In the Edit Masks toolbar, there is also a set of tools for automating the masking process for an image. These are described in more detail in Fine tuning the auto-masking. There is also a set of tools for manual editing of the mask that is described in The Edit Masks Window section.

For a detailed description of all the tools and operations available in this window, see The Edit Masks Window reference section.

2.1.5. The View Model Window

This window is used to display the 3D model generated by 3DSOM Pro. You can use the tools in the View Model toolbar to rotate the object and zoom into look at it in detail. Whilst manually aligning additional images, a background image is displayed and you can zoom and pan for more accurate positioning of the model.


Use the ID_MODEL_RESET.jpgReset view button to return to the default viewing position.

You can also change how the model is displayed. There are controls for editing the model geometry, including altering the number of triangles used to display it and clipping away unwanted geometry and also for editing the textures.


Addtional display options are available under the Main Menu > Model Tools menu from the main menu bar or by right clicking the mouse over the View Model Window.

There are also tools available for interactive editing of the model geometry and textures. For a detailed description of all the tools and operations available in this window, see The View Model Window reference section.