Skip to main content

Patchwork 3D 2024 X7



All the features described below may not be present in your software edition: Community, Premium, Essential, or Enterprise.

P3D Database

In Patchwork 3D, the authoring data for a Digital Aspect Mockup is stored in a single file, a database using the P3D format. This file contains all of the raw editing information, the directory information for external resources, and the individual internal resources. Each element used to create the final rendering is stored in the .pd3 database whether or not it is used in the Digital Aspect Mockup that has been elaborated. For example, an image used to create relief in a texture, in turn, used in a material, is included in the P3D database.

Only one database may be open at a time.

A P3D database created with Patchwork 3D Community can be opened with Patchwork 3D Enterprise via a specific option.

Operations on the P3D database are available from the File menu:

  • New;

  • Open;

  • Reload the last saved state of the database and discard any changes made since then,

  • Recent: a list of recently opened databases. The number of databases listed can be set in the application settings.

  • Show Start Screen

    More information below.

  • Save;

    A database saved by a current version of Patchwork 3D may no longer be readable by earlier versions of the software. When you attempt to save an older database with a newer version of Patchwork 3D, the program will automatically ask you to confirm this action. Confirming the save will change the database version. To maintain a copy of the original file, use the Save as option instead.

  • Notice

    Quick Save As

    Saves a copy of the opened file. No optimization is made.

  • Save as;

    Saves a copy of the opened file by defragmenting the data and optionally cleaning caches to reduce the size of the final file. Please note, that the saving time is longer than the Quick Save As. The larger the size of the database, the longer the saving time.

    We have prepared a comparison of the saving time between the Quick Save As option and the Save As option with cache to illustrate the advantages of this option. Click here to learn more.

    By using the Save As functionality, you can:

    • Do not save cache, Patchwork 3D will purge the cache to save the database. The result is a significantly lighter database that will take a little longer to load the next time you open it.

    • Save all, Patchwork 3D will keep the rendering cache. The next time the database is opened, Patchwork 3D will load the data faster based on the existing renderings.

      Save cache modal
  • Save and clean;

    This feature allows you to save a version of your database free of unnecessary data such as deleted data which you no longer need. Its benefit is to decrease the database size. But, on the other hand, the time to save the database is lengthened.

    The options of Do not save cache and Save all are also available with Save and Clean. Please refer to the previous point to understand how it works.


  • Use Save (Ctrl + S) frequently during your work session.

  • If you plan to work on the database again, at the end of your work session, use Save and clean and Save all instead. In this way, the rendering cache will be saved.

  • If you plan to share or archive the database you are working on, use instead Save and Clean without keeping the rendering cache (Do not save cache).

  • Import in a new database,

  • Export

    • In Shaper UI, it exports the current model. The following formats are supported: KSc, OBJ, P3DXml, FBX.

    • In Matter UI, it exports the current product. The following formats are supported: FBX, KDR, LSD, and MI (Iray).

  • Discard Patchwork 3D Operation History.

  • Optimize Meshes.

Start Screen

Start Screen has been made to quickly give you an idea of what Patchwork 3D can do for you. Several samples are available to guide you in a creation of a Digital Aspect Mockup (DAM).

Start Screen consists of two tabs:

  • the Recent Files that lists last modified files.

  • Sample files .

Start Screen

Start Screen window

Open... button allows you to open an existing DMA, while New... button lets you start a DMA from scratch.

Lumiscaphe videos button links you to the Youtube channel of Lumiscaphe.

Uncheck Show this window at startup if you don't need this window shows up on the next launch of Patchwork 3D. If you want to see it again, just click File and Show Start Screen.

Resources in a P3D File

The P3D file contains many resources, including:

  • Lighting sets,

  • Color palettes,

  • Image and video files used as textures,

  • Materials,

  • Image files used as backgrounds,

  • Gradients,

  • Lighting environments,

  • Camera hierarchies,

  • Camera position lists (.kam file),

  • Sensors,

  • Overlays,

  • Post-processing sets.

All of these resources are fully integrated in the P3D file. Even if they originally came from external sources, once the database has been saved, Patchwork 3D will never require access to the original file.


When transferring a P3D database from one computer to another, you will only need to move the P3D file. All of the resources are contained in this one file.

Many of these resources can also be exported or imported, making them transferable between P3D databases. They can, for example, be stored in a common library which can be specified in the preferences and accessed via the explorer in the Matter sidebar.


A model is a full set of 3D geometric and spatial information derived from an imported CAD file. It is composed of Shaper objects such as surfaces, positions, and animation objects such as nulls, vectors, and axes. The model also contains information regarding Shaper object properties, including UV mapping coordinates, visibility settings, lightmaps, tessellation levels, and relationships with other Shaper objects.

A P3D database may contain several models.


A product is a 3D derivative of a model to which an aspect has been or can be assigned.

Multiple products may be produced for a single model.

Digital Aspect Mockup

In order to be used with the Lumiscaphe software suite of 3D visualization tools, the raw authoring data must be exported as a Digital Aspect Mockup (DAM) in the format KDR. This format contains only the data required by the rendering engine in order to display the product variants and configurations created in Patchwork 3D. The image underlying the relief in a texture is no longer present; only the resulting calculations needed to display a material using that texture are conserved. Consequently, authoring is not supported in this format. The KDR is optimized to load more quickly: unlike the P3D format, in which the displayed images must be calculated when the file is opened, the data in the KDR can be transmitted directly to the graphics card without further treatment.

The Digital Aspect Mockup may then be used as-is in any of the Lumiscaphe visualization solutions.

The Digital Aspect Mockup may then be used as-is in any of the Lumiscaphe visualization solutions.