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Modelport by AECobjects.com

Modelport by AECobjects.com

From my ArchiCAD resources page:

AECobjects (a division of ARCHIVISTA, inc) has Modelport, which is an add-on that will import OBJ, FBX, DAE, and 3DS files into ArchiCAD as Objects. “MODELPORT uses the Autodesk FBX SDK, which is the same code used by Autodesk to create a bridge between their popular 3D software: Maya, Softimage XSI, 3DStudio MAX, etc.”

modelport formatsThis isn’t new; it’s been out for a few months. But I’m so far behind. I kept putting this post off because I wanted to test the add-on out myself. I knew exactly what I’d download. I’d find an OBJ or FBX of the Noguchi coffee table and import it into ArchiCAD. If you’ve downloaded my template, you might have noticed there’s a 2D symbol for the Noguchi coffee table in the embedded library. The only coffee table I show in plans is that table. The only coffee table I want to show in 3D views is that table. It is perfection in coffee table form. It’s the only coffee table I’ll ever own (I’ve had two—my first got damaged in the move from Boston to Seattle; I was pissed). Alas, I’m so far behind on everything that spending some time playing with this add-on keeps getting put off. Eventually I’ll get to it and then write a post about the experience. Unless…anyone have time to experiment with this add-on? If someone wants to write a guest post, that’d be awesome. Maybe you could write about importing the Noguchi Coffee table?????? E-mail me.

living roomThe great thing about an add-on like this is that it helps push rendering farther. With the CineRender rendering engine in ArchiCAD 18, we finally have the capability (for non-Lightworks geniuses) to make really good renderings directly out of ArchiCAD. I’ve done a few and I’ve been very pleased with the results. Mostly I’ve just stuck with the defaults—I love Graphisoft’s analogy of using an automatic camera vs actually using all the settings manually. I’m happy to use the automatic scenes, with some subtle tweaks. Okay a few more tweaks each time…which is the way we become masters, right? Baby steps.

rendering1We can now make great renderings, but what ArchiCAD lacks is an endless supply of entourage: the perfect couch, the right teapot on the counter, the client’s favorite flowers or sports car, all the stuff that takes a rendering from very good to very special. Modelport offers one solution: access to millions of OBJ, FBX, DAE, and 3DS files imported directly into ArchiCAD.

Last minute update: for more on Modelport, check out AECObject’s webinar on demand.

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  • March 5, 2015

    I’ve been using modelport to help build our office library, its been a game changer for sure! That and gsm friendly sites like modlar.com and archibaseplanet.com have given me some great manufacturer specific & generic content

  • March 10, 2015

    There are lots of high quality SketchUp resources to populate your models. You all know about the 3d warehouse, but some of you may not have heard about Designconnected.com.

    Lots of fabulous high quality models in SketchUp format that you don’t need Modelport for.

  • November 4, 2016


    I have downloaded trial version & when I import obj or fbx models
    into archicad it does not show any textures at all,
    Is this because of trial version or I AM DOING SOME MISTAKE


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