Dive Deeper into Immersive Visualization with Virtual Reality

Sylvia Knauer Sylvia Knauer June 28, 2017

3 min read

Imagine the benefit to creating an immersive visualization of your Revit model before the project is ever built. You could iterate faster, validate your design decisions, and get valuable insight into how the future occupant will interact with the building.

Now, imagine the benefit to your client of being able to experience a 3D model in a virtual reality world. While not everyone can understand how to interpret a design model, everyone can understand virtual reality.

Virtual reality (VR) technology makes it possible for both architects and clients to experience immersive visualization and explore, understand, and feel what a design will look like in ways never possible before.

immersive visualization

VR Rift headset by Oculus

As the design-to-make process becomes more digital, BIM has become increasingly important, and is now realized in ways that democratize 3D modeling experiences for everyone. With tools like VR, designers and builders can enhance their understanding of designs and accelerate decision making, bringing projects to realization more quickly than ever before.

For architects, VR works in conjunction with digital models to help them realize their design ideas. For other project stakeholders, VR helps teams better align around the design much earlier in the design process. Problems not visible on a desktop screen become more apparent as a user experiences immersive visualization and interacts with the design. The ceiling might seem too low, or the placement of an air vent might clash with another aspect of the design.

The immediate benefit of using VR in the design studio is the improved sense of scale and spatial relationships that allows for near real-time feedback. VR has the potential to accelerate design decisions by allowing more stakeholders to validate design concepts at full-scale.

Read how KieranTimberlake is shifting design practice to design a facility on Mars by extending Revit workflows through Autodesk visualization technology.

immersive visualization

VR application for architecture and interior design.

Immersive visualization technologies can also be used in later stages of installation. For contractors, augmented reality (AR) is the complementary application of VR that superimposes the virtual world over the real world. Imagine walking on the job site with an AR equipped construction helmet and being able to “see” through walls. The AR helmet would reveal concealed building service items like electrical conduit, heat ducts, and water pipes projected across the walls in front of you.

immersive visualization

Augmented reality takes the Revit model to the construction site, letting engineers and contractors experience it at full-scale in an immersive 3D environment. VR could even encourage the construction field to study the spatial relationships of building assemblies and systems. Read more about how Autodesk and Mortenson Construction are partnering to create innovations in augmented reality .

Autodesk® Revit® Live is an exciting visualization solution for architects that can be accessed directly from Revit or Revit LT. Revit Live provides an easy way to create immersive visualizations to help designers understand, explore, and share their designs. Unlike advanced visualization tools, Revit Live is accessible to anyone of any skill level.

From Revit, you can upload your model to the Revit Live cloud service with just one click. Once created, the visualization is opened in the Autodesk® Live Editor where you can explore your model and make adjustments, such as location-based lighting and rendering styles. Extend the experience to virtual reality with an HTC VIVE or Oculus Rift headset.


Learn how to take your Revit Live visualization into virtual reality

The Autodesk® Live Viewer provides a mobile solution for Revit Live that allows you to present and share visualizations on the go to project stakeholders without the use of the Revit desktop application.

AR and VR technologies will disrupt and radically change how we imagine, design, and build in a connected BIM world. Explore what VR has to offer today to help you improve your design process and meet your client’s expectations by downloading a free trial of Revit Live.

Get AEC updates in your inbox

By clicking subscribe, I agree to receive the AEC newsletter and acknowledge the Autodesk Privacy Statement.