Model Upload Format


I have been thinking about the file format to upload mesh models that might ultimately be settled upon and just wanted to throw in my opinion, for what it is worth. I understand why .fbx was used as the initial format, for Autodesk is the industry standard for professional 3D artists.

I think it depends on who you see as your target content creators. Are you thinking that the majority will be professionals, or perhaps that may even be seen as the ideal. For industry professionals, it is expected that they would be using Autodesk products.

As a hobbyist and content creator on a more modest level, I would not be willing to pay the cost to buy Autodesk or Maya LT, priced at over $3,000 US. The monthly subscription cost of $50 US a month for Maya LT is an improvement over that, but still more than many hobbyists would like to pay, especially when there is Blender that will do the job for nothing, or the more modestly priced Modo and ZBrush.

If your potential target is to include as many content creators as possible, could I recommend perhaps adopting the .obj format? Just about every 3D program out there will export to .obj. It seems to be the common format that all the programs can read.

I don’t know if some formats have more advantages over others in terms of data that can be carried in that format. Perhaps those who are more knowledgeable than I can comment.


Well the OBJ is universal but the fbx is very versatile. As fan of Blender I would agree that fbx is a pain in the arse.
Collada dae is open source and widely supported (works with Blender Maya c4d,Modo etc). What I like about dae and fbx is that they contain more than just the model. They both support rigging and fbx also supports animation.
I want what ever format we support to be capable of displaying the same stuff they will in the 3d prog so lights normals specular and all that gubbins.


I agree with @Judas on the suggestion to support Collada (.dae) and there are open source converters and outputters for various programs as well as many 3D modellers having built in exporters for that.

Collada (.dae) would also mean that meshes made for SecondLife/OpenSim could be brought across… even better if the rigged mesh avatars in collada format could be supported.

Unity can read .FBX, .dae (Collada), .3DS, .dxf and .obj files.


Aha! I learned something I did not know. Thank you Judas. I change my recommendation to .dae for the animation. It is also good for Second Lifers to be able to bring in work already created for Second Life. I see there are many Second Lifers here now, in the alpha, and as we go on to beta and release, that number will only increase.


One thing is for sure what i hear from others. And let me say it in my words.
Get as soon as possible away from the fbx format and choice
some open format like .dae or .obj for most of the people the .fbx is a big pain in …

fbx is a bit a stopper for many people…


There is nothing stopping additional formats being uploaded in the future. For right now there are a couple of tools out there that are great and free:

  1. The Autodesk FBX converter, this will convert your OBJ to an FBX.
  2. We know there are some issues with Blender FBX. I have put up Worklist job to fix

Also for the .OBJ or DAE format you should put up a Worklist job and mark it as suggested.


Chris, its maby a good idea to have a new category. "Software"
so we can find easy tools like this back ?


How about if I put it up on our wiki?


@Richardus I have created a software section in the wiki under New User Notes