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I have recently purchased this asset from the3dstudio.com:

http://www.the3dstudio.com/product_details.aspx?id_product=193089

It has a corrupt .3ds file available, and a .max (as well as what appears to be a broken .dfx and a textureless and animation-less .obj).

I wrote the site administrator, who attempted to make me a new .3ds file from his master copy (I'm assuming the working .max file) but said:

"The .3ds export doesn't seem to be completed so normally we would just re-export it but I can't get a good export on this model. Only the low-poly control mesh wants to export so I emailed the author to see if they can get us a better file and will let you know as soon as they reply.

"With any non-max format you will not have any rigging in the model as common formats (3ds, dxf, obj, etc) do not support things like rigging (which are program specific) so any export to 3DS (and thus C4D) would just be the geometry, textures, and basic materials."

So it was my understanding based on my very limited knowledge and this e-mail I got that none of the formats that I'd be able to get into Cinema 4D would be able to carry animation data. Then I saw this Elance job posting:

http://www.elance.com/j/convert-3d-studio-max-animation-cinema-4d/19612175/

Now obviously that's not, like, internet canon: I realize just because there was a listing on some site somewhere that made it seem like it was possible doesn't make it true. But it looks like that team in India was willing to do it for sixty bucks, which makes it hard to believe it could be that in-depth of a process. But maybe that's my naïveté about either 3D or American to Indian currency conversion rates or both.

So, is this possible?

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Just because some Indians on Elance claim to be able to solve it for 60 bucks, it doesn't mean they can actually do it. See the "prove p = np" project on GetACoder. Many people "can do it" for 300-350 USD. getacoder.com/projects/solve%20p%20vs%20np_132036.html –  Marton Sep 23 '13 at 13:21

2 Answers 2

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Cinema 4d seems to support FBX format. Even the cheapest C4D. You might be using a very old Cinema, thugh. Check if you can import FBX.

FBX is a format that does support perfectly bones, weights, animation. So, all you need to do is get someone that opens in Max that *.max file you have, and export as FBX. Then you could import into your Cinema4D, and have it ready.

This is not 100% safe path, in the sense that always there can be issues, that is, when importing an FBX file into any package. But it should work with some settings tweaking: FBX is a format thought for exchange.

So, possible solutions (go with whichever bellow, but I'd go trying in the listed order...):

  • Ask the The3DStudio crew, which have fame to be eficient and serious, to export for you in FBX format (considering the initial corrupt *.3ds file problem, might be a kind detail...though dunno if is legally allowed by the file author) , is easy for them and would have use very little time unless appears some big issue.

  • Have one friend having a Max license open the max file and simply got to menu, export fbx (it comes by default, needs no plugin)

  • Have those guys from elance take care as well of the C4D import, so you might ensure no issues, if they know their stuff.

Note: Sometimes is not enough to play with FBX i/o settings, and you need to try a pair of FBX versions, usually 5.x or 6.x. I don't know which is the current number. I tested to be safer to export in default Max FBX, the one that comes included, than installing as a plugin. Anyway, sometimes older versions work better with older packages.

About the 60$ of the third option, I guess they charge that for in case some issue arises, as the actual thing is open, export, import. Just that there might be fixing involved. Sometimes really easy ones, other times can even make it impossible, depending on package versions, status of original file, etc.

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One of the best answers I've gotten on the Stack sites, and that's saying something because they're always good. Appreciate it! –  Michael Davis Apr 26 '11 at 19:32
    
Hey, you're welcome! :) –  S.gfx Apr 27 '11 at 8:50

For the reference of others in the future, this is the one & only way to do a full, 1:1 conversion from 3ds Max to Cinema-4D, with no intermediate file formats like .3ds (which is a deprecated, 16-bit DOS file format):

http://www.okino.com/conv/pt4max.htm http://www.okino.com/conv/exp_c4d.htm

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