3DS File Type

- The quick facts

What are 3DS files and how to open them

Are you having problems opening a 3DS file or just wondering what they contain? We explain what these files are used for and show you software that we know can open or otherwise handle your files.

What is a 3DS file?

A .3DS file is a 3D Studio mesh file.

Files that contain the .3ds file extension are most commonly associated with the Autodesk 3D Studio software. The software's 3DS files contain a variety of information used to form a three-dimensional scene, like coordinates, a list of polygons used to form the objects, color information, etc.

3DS files are stored in a binary file format. This enables the files to load faster and makes them smaller than the text-based file formats of a similar nature.

3DS files were commonly used to transfer 3D models between different 3D software applications. The 3DS file format has been increasingly replaced by the newer MAX file format created for, the newer 3DS Max software program.

How to open 3DS files

Important: Different programs may use files with the 3DS file extension for different purposes, so unless you are sure which format your 3DS file is, you may need to try a few different programs.

While we have not verified the apps ourselves yet, our users have suggested 10 different 3DS openers which you will find listed below.

Last updated: August 20, 2021

Suggest another file format using extension 3DS

While we know of one file format using the .3DS file extension, there may be more. It is widespread that different programs use files with the same file extension for very different types of data. Please let us know if you are aware of a different kind of .3DS file.

Various apps that use files with this extension

These apps are known to open certain types of 3DS files. Remember, different programs may use 3DS files for different purposes, so you may need to try out a few of them to be able to open your specific file.

Adobe PhotoshopAdobe PhotoshopUser submitted
WinDS PROWinDS PROUser submitted
ACD/3D Viewer FREEWAREACD/3D Viewer FREEWAREUser submitted
WinDS PRO AppsWinDS PRO AppsUser submitted
pCon.plannerpCon.plannerUser submitted
ViewViewUser submitted
MicroStationMicroStationUser submitted
ACD/3DACD/3DUser submitted
3D Studio Max3D Studio MaxUser submitted
3D-Tool3D-ToolUser submitted