View Full Version : Max to Lightwave

03-29-2008, 09:43 AM
Hi all,

I have this problem. I have been given a file but its in max format. I know someone who uses max and can convert but he is not sure which is the best format. I would like it converted so i can use it in lightwave.

He has tried several times to convert to obj and created a mtl library but everytime in try to load into lightwave the maps and uv data are not there or are screwed up. Ive tried dodgys mtl importer but it crashes my system (Win64/Vista 64).

I would love for someone to give me the steps to achieve this in max. I believe he is using the latest version, he knows little about lightwave and i know even less about max.

Thanks in advance.

Regards, John

03-29-2008, 09:44 AM
PS im using Lightwave 9.3.1 and ob9.5

03-29-2008, 10:12 AM
If the model is using max's material system (as in mapping coords other than UV and/or procedurals/mix maps etc) then i dont think there is an easy way to just bring those materials over to lightwave.

Max can render to a texture image though (simalar to how lightwave can bake surfaces) which would allow you to consolidate the max material down into a single UV mapped image. So all you would need to worry about then is exporting the model its self in such a way that the UV mapping coords stay intact.

A .obj should do this, as would .3ds i think but .3ds supports triangles only. The other option would be to export it as an FBX and use 9.5 to open it (you mentioned you have the open beta).


03-29-2008, 11:09 AM
Perhaps you could use Blender as a go-between.

I'm currently using some models exported as .lwo from someone working in Blender. They import great.

jin choung
03-29-2008, 04:37 PM
well it is autodesk... have you tried .fbx?


03-30-2008, 12:20 AM
Hi guys thanks for the replies and the suggestions. Ive spoken to him and he says that he cannot see a way to export to fbx, its not in the dropdown list for exporting, i will get him to look into it more. He only deals usually in max format. I know lightwave can handle fbx as of ob 9.5 so i hope this will be a goer jin.

Thanks again,

Regards, John

03-30-2008, 04:56 AM
In the latest version of Max "Autodesk (*.FBX, *.DAE)" is the default option when you do File>Export.

jin choung
03-30-2008, 05:15 PM
and if you're not on the latest version, there's gotta be a plugin or something he can download from autodesk.


03-30-2008, 07:17 PM
You might also consider this. you could install the latest trial version of 3DMax. It will allow you 30 days to use it without any real restrictions other than the fact you won't be able to use or install any external plugins. you could use it to convert the files. I did this recently for a project and it worked fine.

03-31-2008, 12:06 AM
I might do that james although its a bit of a steep learning curve i hear after lightwave. im getting my mate to look into converting it to different formats for me and see which one comes out best.

Ive done it before and converted to obj the used dodgys mtl loader plugin. It now seems to crash in ob9.5. Will have to go back to 9.3.1.

Thanks alot guys,

Regards, John

03-31-2008, 04:56 PM
I've been using the .obj importer/exporter from this page to work between max and lw and they are really great.

they even have some presets and there's one for lightwave

jin choung
03-31-2008, 06:01 PM

maybe we should point newtek development to that site! man that guy totally rips lw's handling of objs to pieces!

too funny.


03-31-2008, 06:02 PM
Thanks alot for the link. I cant believe my mate didnt know about this. he downloaded it and will give it a whirl later. It sounds interesting anyway.Ive also told him to get the fbx exporter.

Regards, John

03-31-2008, 06:07 PM
Yeah quite agree jin, would be nice to see something like this in lightwave. Also noticed his port of ivy generator for max, id love to see that in lightwave.

Regards, John

jin choung
03-31-2008, 11:04 PM
Yeah quite agree jin, would be nice to see something like this in lightwave.

yeah but i wouldn't expect it from this guy! his opinion of lw is... ummm... low. lol!

actually, it's not free so i don't bring it up as a run and gun solution but personally, i use right hemisphere's deep exploration for all my conversion needs.

especially since i've been using lw on various jobs (that are not lw houses), i make interoperability my responsibility and DE has been a fantastic investment that has paid for itself more times over than i can ever shake a stick at.

not too expensive but a few hundred alas is a few hundred. i use the non-cad version (much cheaper) but it handles all translation tasks between maya, lw, max, etc.

i was surprised as heck when it correctly translated a skinned dragon model that i did in maya into lw with bones, weightmaps, everything.


04-02-2008, 12:37 PM
damn, that is sweet!