How do you create a DAE file?

What 3D formats are supported?

Our 3D model support is based on the Collada format (v1.4 or v1.5), as exported by Maya and 3DS Max. We support the OpenCOLLADA Exporter and to a lesser extent the Autodesk Collada Exporter, however we strongly recommend the OpenCOLLADA Exporter.

You can download the free OpenCollada exporter plugin for 3ds Max and Maya here.

How is a .dae file created?

A .dae file is a file exported from a 3D authoring program - of which there are plenty to choose from.

HP Reveal supports 3D models based on the Collada format (v1.4 or v1.5). For best results, the most compatible packages are 3ds Max or Maya 2012-2015, using the OpenCollada DAE Exporter. These are the programs our in-house creative team use and as such we can offer the best support for content created in them. 

3D assets can be exported using the standard Collada - supported by most programs - exporter however they are far more unstable and prone to errors/unsupported features. 

3DS Max export settings:

Use these Settings for the OpenCollada plugin for 3ds Max - these settings will support (provided they're set up correctly);

  • Materials with all supported map - diffuse, specular colour, self-illumination, tangent normal maps.
  • Animated objects.
  • Skin modifiers.
  • Morph modifiers (must be used under a Skin modifier).
  • Bones.
  • Point helpers.
  • Point and Spot lights. 


If you're not animating any of your 3d objects you don't need to worry about the "Animation" section - just leave it un-ticked.


Maya export settings:

For exporting rigged characters in Maya it is necessary for any objects included in a skin/smooth bind effect to be parent to an object at world zero. Otherwise they objects will experience weird off-setting with their animation.

These settings should be suitable to export exactly the same things as 3ds Max, listed above.


Cinema 4D export settings:

The Open Collada group has not yet released an OpenCollda plugin for Cinema 4D.

Cinema4D will export models and texture maps using Collada 1.4, but using Collada 1.5 will not export texture map.

Additionally the lighting & animation data is exported in a format not recognised by the HP Reveal engine – use of diffuse maps in the luminance channel can circumvent the lighting setback.


Blender export settings:

Blender's Collada exporter (according to their website) and from the tests we have done it is possible to export dae files with the following attributes:

  • Materials with diffuse & specular colour maps.
  • Animated objects.
  • Skin modifiers.
  • Bones.
  • Point lights. 

Our in-house testing with Blender is limited, but if you have to use a free 3D package to create you're assets - then this is the one we suggest.


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