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3ds Max FBX Export

Posted: Sun Sep 17, 2017 3:27 pm
by Nums
For now I'm not calling this a guide as I'm still learning and experimenting myself, it's more of a note taking place for myself. However others of course may look at my notes and comment in if they wish.

Steps to Export from 3ds Max into IMVU using FBX
Version of 3ds Max used: 2016

Mesh, Animation , Morph and Skeleton Preparation

Example Stack

Your geometry must be an Editable Mesh or Editable Poly
If your geometry is a Deformable GPoly or Editable Patch, the Skin and Morph may be lost (usually just the morph)
Physique may not work ?

Note: CAT Bones seem to be a struggle for some versions of Max to export

Just have an animation I guess?

There is no longer a need to link your morph targets to your base mesh. This is an obsolete step.
Also I have currently not once reset the Xform either. I believe this to be an obsolete step as well.
Simply have a Morpher Modifier on your stack with loaded morph targets

To any Mesh Head makers. You will absolutely want to use FBX to create your heads.

Currently, exporting the actual .XPF separate using IMVU exporters actually will work with your FBX mesh.

Export or Export Selected


Note: It does not matter what frame you export on!

I prefer Export Selected because the Export option will normally throw errors due to the default avatar's skeleton and it typically takes a bit longer to export. However, the errors it throws in a lot of cases are irrelevant.

Export Selected
To use this, you must select EVERYTHING you wish to export. If it's not selected, it's not getting exported. Very quick to export. Any errors thrown should be read.
I exported a 100 Morph Target Mesh in a little over a second.

This will simply export everything, making the FBX rather large, time consuming to export, and IMVU itself takes awhile to read the file. Will most likely throw a lot of errors, as the Default File contains many things the FBX export doesn't like.

FBX Export

My default presets (animation time may vary)



Smoothing Groups
Surprisingly, if you want your smoothing groups to be exported, do not check this box. (perhaps it's just me lol?)

Split per-vertex Normals
Throws an error, I don't use it

Tangents and Binormals
Perhaps something to do with normal mapping. In which case you wouldn't use.

PLEASE DON'T USE. Most peoples meshes probably already far exceed a normal polygon limit.

Preserve Instances
I believe you won't use this for IMVU

Selection Sets
I believe you won't use this for IMVU

Convert Deforming Dummies to Bones
Check this if you are trying to use Dummy Nodes as bones

I believe this isn't needed

Preserve Edge Orientation



To export Animations, Morphs, Meshes, you must check this.

Use Scene Name
Will name your Animation and Morph file names in IMVU to the name of your 3ds Max file

Remove Single Key

Bake Animation
Check if you want to record skeletal animation

The time in which it will record the keyframes

1 Step will record a keyframe every single keyframe
2 Steps will record a keyframe every other keyframe
3 Steps will record a keyframe every 3 keyframes
and so on...

Resample All
Very important
It's hard to explain what this does as I don't know fully myself, but usually it would seem you want this checked. Here's an example of it at work, but I know it does much more than just this.

Example Animation in 3ds Max

Resample All: OFF

Resample All: ON

Check this if you want to export a Mesh or Morph

Check if exporting something with a Skin Modifier

Check if exporting something with Morphs


"Selecting everything I want to export every time is very time consuming!"

Use your selection sets to create a selection of everything you wish to export. Just type in the box and press enter, with everything selected that you wish to be in the set, and it will create one.

Everything else about the exporter seems pretty irrelevant to export correctly for the time being

I'll make a video soon on the process of this.

Re: 3ds Max FBX Export

Posted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 7:31 am
by TiaraStone
Thank you so much for making this tutorial really appreciate.

I have a small question though and hope this is me doing some silly mistake, when I export earrings for example (and it doesnt matter if I select the femalemaster/selection only or head), they always appear beside the avatar floating even though the asigned attachment node is the Head.

Any ideas what could be wrong, did I miss a step or is it the exporter?

Thanks in advance


Re: 3ds Max FBX Export

Posted: Sun Dec 03, 2017 9:29 pm
by Nums
There's a lot of reasons really and being new to it myself, I can't really name the reasons why yet. I'm going to try and make a video soon of exporting simple accessories, animated, and clothing. Hopefully it will help.

Re: 3ds Max FBX Export

Posted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:16 am
by TiaraStone
Thanks so much :) I will try using max 2018 instead of 17 to see if that makes any difference.
Appreciate your help.

Re: 3ds Max FBX Export

Posted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 6:59 pm
by Nums

Also I apologize for the mic volume.

Re: 3ds Max FBX Export

Posted: Mon Dec 11, 2017 7:07 am
by TiaraStone
Thanks so much that really helped me out :)
Specially that you hat to select the animation even though there werent any.
Happy Holidays and thanks again :)

Re: 3ds Max FBX Export

Posted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 7:21 am
by Nums
I'm happy to have helped.