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Simplification Workshop

Simplification reduces the size and improves the graphical performance of your models.

Important: You cannot undo simplifications once you click Apply All Modifications.

To display this workshop, click Workshops > Geometry > Simplification .

This page discusses:

Main Area

The main area of the Simplification workshop lets you store settings using profiles and manage high resolution.


Profiles store your settings for future use. For details, see About Profiles for Workshop Settings.

Command Name Description
Reinitialize Resets the model to the beginning state (before decimation or occlusion).
Note: Not applicable to clones detection.
Refresh Displays the decimation or occlusion results in the model. Composer updates the model automatically when you perform decimation or occlusion, so refreshing manually is generally not required.
Note: Not applicable to clones detection.
Apply All Modifications Permanently applies decimation or occlusion results to your model.
Important: You cannot undo simplifications once you click Apply All Modifications.
Note: Not applicable to clones detection.
Analyze Specifies the scope for simplification:
  • Visible actors
  • Selection
  • All actors
The progress bar showsdecimation or occlusionanalysis progress.
Note: Not applicable to clones detection.

Decimation Tab

Decimation reduces the number of triangles in the model, which in most cases (but not always) ends up in reducing file size.

Decimation degrades model geometry, but small amounts of decimation can typically be applied with altering the visual quality.

Note: Decimation removes tessellation vertices without affecting accuracy. To protect your document by moving vertices, which affects model accuracy, use 3D Secure Brush or the Reduce accuracy option. See Secure 3D Brush and Security.
Important: You cannot undo simplifications once you click Apply All Modifications.

Original Model File Size: 180 KB 50% Reduction File Size: 90 KB 90% Reduction File Size: 18 KB
Command Name Description
Prepare decimation Calculates the initial display state of all actors. For large models, this can take considerable time. Once initialized, applying different decimation scenarios is relatively fast.
Note: If you do not click Initialize before running a decimation, initialization is performed automatically.
Distribution function Specifies how to simplify the model:
  • Constant (constant distribution) - Applies the same reduction ratio to each actor.
  • Cost (cost repartition) - Applies the reduction ratio to actors in the scene differently to reduce fine details first. This method generally gives better visual results.
Reduction slider Specifies what percent of the total number of triangles should remain after decimation. For example, if your model has 100,000 triangles and you specify 70%, the result is 70,000 triangles. When you change the percentage, the scene updates with the effect of the decimation (see Auto refresh) and Expected size updates to show the anticipated resulting file size. Choose a reduction percentage that balances model quality and file size.
Note: The requested (reduced) and total number of triangles appear under Statistics.

Tip: You can selectively decimate portions of your model to retain detail for some parts while reducing detail for others. Before specifying the reduction percentage , select parts in your model and select Selection for Analyze.

Auto refresh Updates the scene with decimation modifications in real time as you drag the reduction slider. When this option is cleared, the scene updates only when you drop the slider.
Note: If auto-refresh calculation time is excessive, the scene updates only when you drop the slider.
Expected size Shows the expected file size after decimating by the selected reduction percentage. You can also type a desired file size and press Enter. Composer applies the reduction percentage required to come close to your requested file size.

Occlusion Tab

Occlusion removes parts from the model based on size or whether the parts are internal and therefore not visible.

Important: You cannot undo simplifications once you click Apply All Modifications.

Original Model Internal Parts Detected

Command Name Description
Remove small parts Removes parts smaller than the specified percentage of the total scene size. The calculation uses the volume of a bounding box, not the actual part volume. For example, if you specify 10%, only parts that fit in a bounding box that is 10% of the entire scene are removed.
Remove internal parts Removes parts that are internal and therefore not visible.
Apply to (Available when Remove internal parts is selected.) Runs occlusion on:
  • Current viewport
  • Views
  • Animation
  • All
Note: Actors with opacity, displacement, or texture-with-transparency property keys are not considered for occlusion.
3D (Available when Remove internal parts is selected.) Performs occlusion on the 3D model. Snapshots are taken from different points of view. For animation mode, snapshots are taken along the camera animation. Select one of the following:
  • Speed - Uses fewer camera positions resulting in faster computation.
  • Quality - Uses more camera positions.
To perform occlusion on the 2D view, clear this option.
Cut triangles (Available when Remove internal parts is selected.) Runs occlusion on actor triangles instead of actors. After analysis, you can remove hidden triangles. Outlines remain visible until the file is reopened.
Compute and Select

Performs the occlusion calculation and selects all actors that satisfy your criteria. Use the following icons to control the results:

Select Less/Occluded Actors
Hide Less/Occluded Actors
Show Only Less/Occluded Actors
Back to Original State
Remove Less/Occluded Actors

Clones Detection Tab

Clone detection identifies parts with identical or similar geometry and converts duplicate geometries to instances (references). Clone detection reduces file size.

You can also initiate clone detection from Geometry > Geometry > Detect Clones .

For many file formats, Composer automatically detects clones during import:

  • For SOLIDWORKS files, the Detect Clones algorithm is applied during file import.
  • For other CAD formats and 3DXML, clone detection occurs only when the input files contain instance definitions.
  • For non-CAD formats, clone detection does not occur during import.

When clone detection does not occur automatically during import, use the Simplification - Clones Detection workshop (or Detect Clones command). However, there are cases where clones cannot be detected. See Clones Detection Example.

In the following example, the two fans and four rods start as separate parts. After clone detection, they are instances () of the same part.

Before After
Command Name Description
Exact Specifies that only identical geometries are clones.
Note: Because clone detection checks both geometry and coordinate systems, identical geometries with different coordinate systems are not considered clones. The coordinate system checked is the one used to create the part.
By similarity Specifies that similar but not identical geometries are clones. Select from low to high similarity.
Compute Applies clone detection.
Important: You cannot undo clone detection once applied.


The statistics at the bottom of the Simplification pane show how much reduction you have achieved.

Command Name Description
Total reduction ratio Shows the amount of reduction achieved using the Decimation tab. 100% indicates no reduction.
Number of triangles Shows the number of triangles used to display the actors. Composer renders all actors as a number of triangles (also called polygons).
Number of selected parts Shows the number of geometry actors participating in the analysis, which is based on your Analyze selection.
Number of small/occluded Shows the number of actors found using the Occlusion tab.

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