Need advice on .max files migration to Blender from ex 3ds max users

Hi guy’s,

I have only a month left of my 3ds max subscription and i need to do a massive files migration toward Blender and i would like to hear how you guy’s did it and any problem you encounter doing it.

The fbx format is OK for geometry but what about splines since i have a lot of scene involving spline and i know i can convert spline to mesh but that defeat the editing capability.

Also should i go nut and even save an obj file version just to be on the safe side if the fbx had any problem?

Any tips are welcome since i don’t want to lose critical files information.

For the curves I’ve used alembic, works quite well

Hey Strangerman i also did a test with it and my spline were set to linear and i could not enable them in Blender edit mode but that was a very quick test so maybe there is some settings i forgot.

This might be still worth a shot. It’s 10 years old but is perfect for your needs otherwise

Hey there thank but this is pretty old(2007)and the link doesn’t seem to have the script anymore and also it’s look like it is more about exporting Blender curves to 3ds max and not the other way around.

I doubt there is any clean way of doing this but will report back if i found a better option.

If you read it it actually says he found a 2-way workflow for curves/splines that worked perfect.

It might be worth a try contacting the author for advice/help. You never know. I’ve done this in the past with scripts I couldn’t download anymore and the artists were very helpful.

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Agree and thank i will email him to see if he is still around.

have you tried going into EditMode > selecting all > V > Automatic
this sets splines from linear > automatic

Hi 0rAngE, yes indeed i try every single type and the handle simply don’t show up, it’s like they are only in vector mode since i can move curve point but without any smooth deformation aka handles.

I have a couple of ideas of what to try with it.
Can you post a blend file with one such curve in it?

Finally find how to do it here a gif to help others ;

Took me around 3 hr to figured it out :sweat_smile:

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As an additional tip make sure you activate the simplify curves addon in your Blender user preferences so this way you reduce the amount of curves point on the imported dxf or any vector format, you can select only the desired curves point and apply simplify curves on it so you can have more control over optimization.

Remember to use the F6 key to get the parameters.

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Currently find out that the dxf export is 100 time smaller so merging both splines and geometry was incorect since only geometry scale was OK.

The trick is easy here first merge your geometry and then import your dxf file and press s and then 100 and everything is perfectly align.

This will help other max users like me who probably have a mix of splines and geometry in the same scene.

Too bad we cannot do this in one single file format but at least we can manage to get them.

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OK i am now encountering another issue and i am not sure if it is my limited knowledge of Blender units but importing a 3ds max scene with centimeters as the scale unit make my object vanish in the viewport and i have to change the clipping to insane amount before i get it back in view.

Prior to import i also change Blender unit to centimeters.

Anyone having and idea on how should i fix this?

ANSWER: The answer was to adjust the clip in the property region panel(there is a gif showing how to bellow).

EDIT: False alarm this is no bug, it’s seem that my biped got imported with keyframe and the numeric field just showed it as keyframed.

Here a quick gif to setup your units correctly in both 3ds max and blender so your scale match.

Adjusting the clip is essential if you want to see your object if you work in centimeters like me or else adjust it as needed.

Saving your startup file is convenient if all your scene to import were made in the same units but if you have other units setup like meter then don’t forget to change it back in Blender and ctrl+u again to save the startup file.

This is great. Glad you sorted it and thanks for posting up your findings.

Yes, the scale between Max/Blender is something that’s very important to me as I’m still only at the early stages of using Blender from Max. I was using the odcopypaste script but it was too limited.

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Hi Musashidan,

You are welcome my friend and i intend to comment back until my complete migration is done and will post anything that can help people coming from 3ds max.

I know how frustrating it can be when you come from an other app and i will try to do my best to help people with this thread.

For me the splines were very important in my workflow and i have countless model that rely on the spline contour so it was primordial to get them in correctly scale so i am glad everything is working.

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I here you, mate. Splines in Max are are so good. I use them all the time, and in every projects/job. It is one of the things I will dearly miss in Blender. For this reason I’m going to buy the Speedflow plugin as Tubify looks like it will substitute nicely for the non-destructive Max spline workflow.

I’ve only been using 2.8 for a week. but I’ve been using it ‘OCD-style’ and I’m absolutely LOVING it. It has really surprised me how natural the transition from Max has been.

All I really need now is something like the Styx plugin for Blender. It effectively makes Zbrush and Max a single application. I believe GoB for Blender/Zbrush hasn’t worked properly in a while.

Hey thank mate since i was not aware of the speedflow plugin and will have a look at it.

Personally i was planning of doing my splines work in inkscape with the annoyance of import/export but if i can do it natively in Blender i would be a happy man.

Agree 2.8 will make the transition a lot smoother for former max and even maya users. Many of my colleagues are on the verge to switch since they are tired of the instability.

Regarding my sculpting app it’s 3d coat and we have a bridge between Blender but i didn’t have the time to test it yet. I was using zbrush for 2 years in studio but i switch to 3d coat since they have one of the best 3d painting, retopo, UV tool and the excellent voxel boolean that simplify my life so much and as a major bonus they support 3d connexion space navigator and sculpting with this is simply the next best thing right after slice bread!