Interactive 3D models

Nowadays it is also possible to display 3D models fully interactive in a web browser. Your audience can then move the 3D model around in the web browser. Or it can be projected into a room via a mobile phone as Augmented Reality (AR).

The 3D model is shown in real-time. Nothing is pre-rendered. However, it does require some special preparation of the 3D model. But if done correctly, it delivers a spectacular result.

Below you can find some examples of the many possibilities you have with an interactive 3D model. Together with the benefits they offer.

The benefits

1. Full interactivity

The 3D model is fully interactive. It is therefore possible to freely rotate around the model and view it from all angles. And also zoom in and out on the model (using two finger gestures on your mobile phone). Also try viewing this page on your mobile phone. Then you can also project the model as AR in your environment:

This compared to an interactive animation that is limited by pre-rendered frames/camera positions. Like the example below:

2. Show hotspots/USP’s on your model

Show hotspots with Unique Selling Points (USP’s), which move along with your model in 3D:

3. Animated models

Show an animated model which, for example, demonstrates the workings of your product. Like with this industrial brake:

Or an exploded view of your product:

The disadvantages

1. Special preparation of your model and textures is required.

If you already have a 3D CAD model (which is the case with many of my customers), this model must be converted into a suitable 3D model for online viewing. The model and materials and textures will not be the same as those used for a regular animated film, or interactive animation.

2. The more complex the model (the more polygons) the heavier the model is to load.

This is mainly a disadvantage for viewing your model online. There are therefore functional limitations to the complexity of the 3D model to be displayed. At a certain complexity and size level of the 3D model, it will no longer be possible to display it in a workable manner online.

3. Limited level of detail possible for the materials and material textures.

The higher the desired level of detail for the required material textures, the higher the required resolution of the material textures. This makes the model heavier to load and larger in overall file size. Which is undesirable for a smooth online experience.

4. No photorealism possible.

Displaying the model online is done via a special rendering technique. Which has limited resources to be able to show the model in Real-Time. As such, you cannot achieve the same level of detail as with an (interactive) animated film. With an (interactive) animated film all frames are rendered in advance. With an interactive 3D model, it is displayed as good looking as possible using special textures and material techniques, in combination with an HDRI lighting technique. The difference can be seen in the first example on this page. Between the 3D model of the binoculars and its rendered interactive animation.

5. Transparent materials are difficult to display.

With Interactive 3D models, transparency can only be achieved by simply making an object more transparent or not. It will therefore not be possible to distinguish between a transparent plastic or glass material for example. As you cannot change the materials light refraction properties. This is clearly visible in the example below for the plastic Tupperware containers. The containers van either be made of plastic, glass or any other transparent material. It is indistinguishable. An attempt has been made to give the material more depth, by applying a light texture to the transparent plastic (zoom in closely to see it).

If you would like to know more about the possibilities with interactive 3D models, please feel free to contact me via the button below:


What I offer

Concept development

Concept and storyboarding to develop the desired animation.

3D models

Obtain and/or construct all required 3D models.

Animation to suit

Animation in the proper form and style for your purpose.

Any questions?

Don’t hesitate to contact me