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UI, pipeline, and workflow

3ds Max® software includes user interface (UI) innovations, productivity enhancing workflows, and rich creative toolsets that help you improve how you use the data in your pipeline. Work more efficiently to create better 3D content in less time.

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    UI, workflow & pipeline

  • Design Workspace** New

    Inspired by our years of experience with Revit and Inventor software, the Design Workspace makes the main features of 3ds Max more accessible, so you can work with more confidence. Importing design data to create high-quality stills and animation is now easier than ever, thanks to efficient, task-based workflows. Easily access object placement, lighting, rendering, modeling, and texturing tools.

  • Easier Revit and SketchUp imports** New

    A tighter Revit integration makes importing models into 3ds Max faster and easier. In addition to the existing Revit File Link workflow, a new Revit importer enables you to import data up to 10 times more quickly and with much cleaner geometry. Import files from SketchUp 2014 to take your design further in 3ds Max.

  • Template system** New

    New on-demand templates provide standardized startup configurations, which can accelerate your scene creation process. Share templates across teams and offices with easy import/export options. Create new templates or modify existing templates to tailor them to your workflows. Built-in settings for rendering, environments, lighting, and units offer more accurate project results.

  • Alembic support* New

    View massive data sets in the Nitrous Viewport, and transfer them more easily through your production pipeline with new Alembic support. Work with production-proven technology, co-developed by Sony Pictures Imageworks, Inc., and Lucasfilm Ltd. Move complex data through a pipeline in a manageable form: the technology distills complex animated and simulated data into a non-procedural, application-independent set of baked geometric results.

  • Enhanced scene management New

    Manage complex scenes more easily with enhancements to Scene Explorers. Organize data into nested layers to make it easier to work with large numbers of objects. Support for docking and Workspaces, together with customizable quad menus, enhance productivity.


  • Python scripting New

    Extend and customize 3ds Max with the popular and easy-to-learn Python scripting language, and differentiate your 3ds Max capabilities with Python-based extensions. Integrate 3ds Max more easily into a Python-based pipeline. Execute Python scripts from MAXScript and the 3ds Max command line. Access a subset of the 3ds Max SDK (software development kit) from Python scripts, including the ability to evaluate MAXScript code.

  • Configurable user interface

    The user interface conforms to the way you work. You can choose from default or customizable workspaces, depending on what you need to do. For example, you can configure one workspace for modeling and another for animating, with different presets for menus, toolbars, ribbon, and viewport tabs in each.

  • Flexible camera matching

    Interactively match the camera view of a scene to the perspective of a photo background, or use 2D pan and zoom for accurate line placement. Easily place a CG element into the context of a still-frame photographic background for print and advertising composites, and visualize how a CG element will look in a real-life setting to validate concepts. 

  • Data transfer and pipeline integration

    Import data from many sources and smoothly transfer data across file iterations, software applications, users, and locations. Enjoy advanced interoperability with Photoshop software. Take advantage of 2-way transfer and synchronization of cameras, lights, null objects, plane objects/solids, footage, footage layering, blend modes, opacity, effects, and text objects with After Effects software.

  • Compositing integration

    Enhance your 3D rendered data and combine it with live-action footage using a choice of compositing options. Segment scenes into render elements for downstream compositing in Smoke, After Effects, Photoshop, or certain other image compositing applications. You can perform simple compositing operations directly within 3ds Max with the node-based interface Slate Compositing Editor.

  • Collaborative workflows with Containers

    Containers make it easier for multiple artists to contribute to the same scene. Reference containers created by others into a single scene, and layer local edits on top nondestructively. Improve scene performance and use less memory by temporarily unloading Containers from the viewport display while maintaining scene relationships for reloading. Override object properties for scene organization without affecting layer organization, similar to a nested layer workflow.

  • Comprehensive 3ds Max SDK

    Extend and customize virtually every aspect of 3ds Max with the SDK (Software Development Kit). Access elements such as scene geometry, animation controllers, camera effects, and atmospherics. Create new scene components, control the behavior of existing components, and export scene data to custom data formats. The managed .NET plug-in loader makes it easier to develop plug-ins in C# or other .NET languages. Includes at least 200 sample plug-in projects.

Applications on the Autodesk Exchange application store may be subject to the Autodesk Exchange Apps – End User License Agreement.

**This feature is exclusively available as part of the 3ds Max 2015 Extension 2 release to customers on active Autodesk® Maintenance Subscription or Desktop Subscription. Extension 2 for 3ds Max 2015 is expected to be available on or after December 17, 2014.