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The Ultimate Pipeline from DAZ 3D to iClone

DAZ Studio is a free, feature-rich 3D figure design and 3D animation tool that enables anyone to create stunning digital imagery. This is the perfect tool to design unique virtual character models with image outputs.

iClone is a fully-featured 3D animation machine that can make use of DAZ 3D Studio characters, in a real-time engine, for animated movie productions. With the help of 3DXchange4, DAZ 3D characters and their animations can now be easily brought into iClone via FBX format.

To optimize DAZ 3D characters and animations for use in a real-time engine, the Digimi Game Developer Kit (plug-in for DAZ Studio) has also been created and brought to iClone users.


Discover the 3D Artist within You!

The power of the Digimi Game Developer Kit for DAZ 3D

FBX Plug-in

FBX allows users to maximize their content creation pipeline by letting them create cutting edge content without having to worry about inter-package compatibility. Support for FBX in DAZ Studio gives you access to a wealth of tools and content, available through the extensive network of FBX partners.

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Texture Atlas

While high-resolution textures make great looking models for rendering purposes they can also be cumbersome to manage and may consume too many system resources. Texture Atlas for DAZ Studio allows you to automatically collect all of the textures associated with a selected figure, size and scale those images, and then combine them into a single texture atlas.

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Decimator for DAZ Studio allows users to create any number of lower polygon versions of a high resolution model, known as Levels of Detail (LODs). Use LOD features in DAZ Studio to automatically switch between models depending on factors such as distance from the camera.

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Animate the Optimized Character in iClone

1. Convert DAZ 3D character into iClone format

After exporting your DAZ 3D character in FBX format, launch 3DXchange4 for file format conversion. Open the exported FBX file in 3DXchange, leave the default settings and Click 'OK'. The model will be converted into an iClone format and easily found in the desired location (iClone content folder).
*When imported, sometimes the figure lies on the ground, to correct this just flip the character upwards. This happens as DAZ Studio uses Y as the "Up Axis" and iClone use Z.

2. Fine tune the look of your character for iClone

In this step, we will adjust the materials of the figure in order to correct some defects and make it look better. Make sure the Pixel Shader is on. Go to the Material section, and turn on the 'Effect All Material' option, then adjust the specularity. This makes the skin shinier and also brings up the model & texture details.

3. Bring the animation-embedded character into iClone

When we export a figure from DAZ Studio, animations are also embedded in the FBX file. In 3DXchange4 the imported animations can be split into clips and become Perform commands in iClone. Create animation segments using timeline in-and-out marks, and automatically convert them into iMotion data. Created motion clips will appear in the right-click Perform Menu for iClone interactive playback.


*Known issue: The embedded motions brought in from DAZ 3D characters, via FBX format, might cause problems with characters that have additional clothing that is originally skinned to another skeleton set. Please be aware of this issue with DAZ FBX Exporter - A solution is already in the works.

4. Create custom animation inside iClone

If you would like to pose or animate a figure in iClone, then you have to convert it from an iProp (prop with skin-bone which will be saved under "Prop" category) into a Non-Human Character (which may be animated with the iClone motion editor and saved under "Character" category). In addition to the 'Perform' commands, you may also manually pose the character and create animations.

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