How to prepare 3D scanned models?

Here are some useful tips if you want to sell scanned 3D assets.

How to prepare scanned assets?

You should prepare 2-3 versions of scanned 3D models with different levels of detail in each version. This way, buyers will be able to use your models in a wider variety of projects, for example, lower-detailed versions of the model can be used in VR and games, while more detailed versions might be used in film production.

What makes a 3D scanned model sell well?

Our most popular categories for scanned 3D models are architecture, nature, plants, people, and animals. Always consider whether objects you want to scan and sell are copyrighted, in the public domain, etc., or whether you have the right to photograph the object at all.

You should also have several similar objects scanned, so buyers could use them a set. Whenever you have many similar assets (scanned rocks, bricks, leaves, etc.), create an asset pack to sell these models in bulk. Buyers usually want several similar objects for their scenes or environments, so it really helps when you have a few additional objects of the same style.

In any case, you can always sell each asset separately.

What are buyers looking for in terms of subjects, sizes, poly counts, textures?

Most customers will likely use your models in very different lighting conditions (games, VR experiences), so your textures should contain as little lighting information as possible. Consider ‘de-lighting’ your assets before uploading them on CGTrader to avoid customer complaints.

The second most important feature of your 3D asset is the number of faces and polygons. Large and computationally-heavy assets are unusable in games or VR experiences, and you should optimize your models by:

  • Simplifying and decimating
  • Re-topology
  • Creating several versions (in terms of polycount and detail)
  • Baking geometry into texture maps (normal map) to compensate for the simplification (especially if you want your model to be usable in VR/AR and games)

You can also consult members of our community in the forum to get some additional tips.

In terms of polycount, CGTrader’s search has a separate filter for the number of polygons, so you might want to edit versions of your model to fit these groupings: 5k, 10k, 50k, 100k, 250k. Do not forget to re-texture your models before exporting different versions. You should upload every version of the model together with the main version and name them accordingly. Take care to note the differences of these versions in the model description.

Make sure your model is available in all popular and standard file formats. As a rule of thumb, you can export your model to:

  • .obj and .fbx formats for VR/AR and games.
  • .stl, .obj, and .dae for 3D printing.
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