Autodesk 3ds Max

Version2022(as of 6/24/2021)
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Rating:3.1  |  91 Votes

Main Features

  • Create 3D models using mesh and surface modeling tools
  • Populate crowds of characters with realistic behavior
  • Use rigging tools to animate your characters in a lifelike manner
  • Create strand-derived effects like grass and hair
  • Generate sophisticated particle effects
  • Navigate through complex scene data using Scene Explorer

Software Overview

Screenshot of Autodesk 3ds Max 2022
Screenshot of Autodesk 3ds Max 2022

Autodesk 3ds Max is a graphics program used to create 3D models, images, and animations. It is most commonly used to create models and scenes for video games, but is also used in the film, television, engineering, and architecture industries.

3ds Max contains an extensive suite of model creation tools, including mesh and surface modeling tools, open shading language (OSL) support, the ability to bake complex surface effects to texture maps, and the ability to auto-populate crowds of characters. It also offers a variety of methods for developing textures, including tiling, rotation, blur, UV stretching, and relaxation.

After you finish creating a model (or models), you can animate it using 3ds Max's sophisticated animation tools. The program's CAT, Character Studio, and Populate tools let you rig and animate characters either individually or as a unit. 3ds Max also allows animators to add motion paths and particle flow effects, skin characters to mildly adjust their appearance as they move, and authentically simulate the movement of cloth and fluids.

When it is time to finalize your scene, you can render and view it using 3ds Max's Arnold GPU Renderer and viewports. You can also use the program's Scene Converter to update scenes you've created previously, to take advantage of newer lighting, materials, and rendering features.


Autodesk 3ds Max is a powerful 3D modeling and animation program that has earned its reputation as an industry-standard application (especially when complemented by Autodesk Maya). Whether you're a student aspiring to become a graphics developer or an existing 3D graphics professional, you can't go wrong with 3ds Max.

Primary File Type

max icon.MAX3ds Max Scene File

Supported File Types

ExtensionFile Type
.MAX3ds Max Scene File
.3DS3D Studio Scene
.ACTGenesis3D Actor File
.AIAdobe Illustrator Artwork
.ASCAutodesk ASCII Export File
.ASEAutodesk ASCII Scene Export File
.BIPCharacter Studio Biped File
.BMPBitmap Image
.BVHBiovision Hierarchy Animation File
.CAL3ds Max Pose Adjustment File
.CGRCATIA Graphical Representation File
.CGRQuest3D Channel Group File
.CHR3ds Max Characters File
.CIBLuminaire Data File
.CPY3ds Max Copy Track File
.CR2Poser Character Rigging File
.CSMCharacter Studio Marker File
.DAEDigital Asset Exchange File
.DDFDiamond Directive File
.DLVCATIA 4 Export File
.DWGAutoCAD Drawing
.DXFDrawing Exchange Format File
.EXPCATIA 4 Export File
.FACEFXFaceFX Actor File
.FBXAutodesk FBX Interchange File
.FIG3ds Max Figure File
.FLTOpenFlight Scene Description File
.FLXFLIC Animation
.FXAOC3 Entertainment FaceFX Actor File
.IFL3ds Max Image File List
.IFPGTA Animation File
.IGRQuest3D Channel Group Layout File
.IPTInventor Part
.JTJT Open CAD File
.M3Blizzard MDX3 Model File
.M3GMobile 3D Graphics 3D Model
.MAT3ds Max Materials File
.MAXC3ds Max Container File
.MCR3ds Max Macroscript File
.MD5ANIMid Tech 4 Model Animation File
.MD5CAMERAid Tech 4 Model Camera File
.MD5MESHid Tech 4 3D Mesh File
.MDDPoint Oven Deformation Data File
.MIX3ds Max Motion Mixer File
.MNMCharacter Studio Marker Name File
.MS3ds Max Script
.MSE3ds Max Encrypted MAXScript File
.MZPMAXScript Zip Package
.OBJWavefront 3D Object File
.PHY3ds Max Physique File
.PRJProject File
.PRTUnigraphics Part File
.RPFRich Pixel Format File
.RVTRevit Project File
.SESSIONCATIA 4 Session File
.SHP3D Studio Shape
.SKPSketchUp Document
.SLDASMSolidWorks Assembly
.SLDPRTSolidWorks Part
.STLStereolithography File
.USDUniversal Scene Description Format
.UVWUVW Coordinates File
.WRZCompressed VRML World File
.XAF3ds Max XML Animation File
.XMM3ds Max XML Animation Map File
.ZTMental Ray Image Depth File

Additional Related File Types

ExtensionFile Type
.ASMPro/ENGINEER Assembly File
.BMI3ds Max Plug-in
.CUIAutodesk Custom Workspace File
.DLO3ds Max Plug-in
.DLRfinalRender Plugin
.DLU3ds Max Utility Plug-in File
.DRFVIZ Render File
.DWFDesign Web Format File
.IAMInventor Assembly
.IGSIndigo Renderer Scene File
.KBD3ds Max Keyboard Shortcuts File
.MATV-Ray Materials File
.MNUAutoCAD Interface Layout File
.NEUPro/ENGINEER Neutral File
.RPS3ds Max Render Preset Settings
.SPTSpeedTree Tree Data File
Updated 6/24/2021