Customizing the View in the 3D Model Viewer

The new 3D Model Viewer features a great many ways to control the appearance of your models

There are many ways to customize the way your 3D model is displayed in SyncSketch.

Note: Reviews using the 3D Model Viewer are currently only available to customers on our Team, Enterprise and Education Plus plans.  Models with animation are only supported on the Enterprise and Education Plus plans. 

Customers on Free, Indie and the legacy Pro plans can continue to annotate 3D models and animations from SketchFab as previously.

3D Viewer Settings

The 3D Model Viewer gives you a wide range of options to customize the way your model is rendered.


Collections of view settings can now be saved and loaded as presets.  See Using 3D View Presets for further details.

Accessing the controls

Open the 3D Viewer Settings menu by clicking on the gear icon in the upper right corner.

This reveals the 3D Viewer Settings panel. 

The following is a description of each of the available settings, broken down by section.











Material Override 

These settings allow you to adjust the surface appearance to aid in analysis of the model.




Select between 4 different materials:

  • Default: A standard physically based rendering (PBR) material which uses parameters and textures included in the uploaded model. 
  • Unlit: Only the diffuse color, which might be a constant or a texture, without any lighting calculations, is displayed.
  • Normal: Displays the normals of the model in camera space. 
  • Matcap: A special technique of shading where the light interaction is looked up from an image file instead of being computed. You can select a matcap shader from the palette below. 

Diffuse Map

Select the source of the diffuse color. 

  • Default: The provided texture or value for the diffuse channel in the uploaded model. 
  • UV Checker: A map to better visualize the model’s UV coordinates. 
  • Disabled: A constant grey value. 

Normal Map

You can enable or disable the provided normal map in the uploaded file. 

Flip Normal Map

Software manufacturers might choose different coordinate systems to encode the surface normals. Flipping the X and Y coordinate can help to make sure the model's normals are displayed correctly. 

Vertex Colors

Model vertices can store additional data along with their position. A common use case for this is color values, referred to as vertex colors. Here, you can choose whether to display red, green, blue and/or alpha channels. 

Double Sided

Choose whether both sides of a surface should be visible, or only the side of the surface facing the direction of the normal.


These settings adjust the optical parameters of the virtual camera.


Set the camera's field of view by changing this value, either by entering a value or by dragging it horizontally. High values will result in a wider angle and lower values will make the camera appear to be zoomed in.

Enable the lock icon to maintain the camera framing when changing the field of view value. 

Use the to reset the field of view to the default.


The exposure value affects the overall brightness of the viewport; in a sense, the sensitivity of the view camera. Higher values result in a brighter image while lower values darken the image. 

Use the to reset the exposure to the default.


This displays the wireframe of your model on top of the selected material to better visualize the mesh topology. 

Use the toggle in the section header to show or hide the wireframe.


Choose the color of the wireframe.


Set the opacity to make the wireframe more or less transparent. 

Main Light

The 3D viewer provides a default directional light as the main light source. These controls adjust its characteristics.

Use the toggle control in the section header to enable or disable the light.


Light Rotation

Set a horizontal angle in degrees in order to change the direction of the main light. 


Select whether the main light should cast shadows or not. 

Map Size

Choose the shadow map size. Higher values will increase the shadow map size and therefore the quality of the shadows, while also increasing the render time. 

Shadow Map Size 512 Shadow Map Size 4096


These controls adjust the ambient lighting.

  • Color: Choose from a predefined color palette. 

  • HDRI: Select a high dynamic range image from the dropdown menu.





Select the type of background to be displayed in the viewport:

  • Env: Sets the background according to the settings selected in the Environment tab. 
    Additionally, you can blur the background and set the blur intensity.
  • Color: Choose the background color from a predefined color palette. 
  • Texture: Select from different textures to be displayed as the background image.


Toggle the grid visibility on or off. The grid size will correspond to the ground size.





These controls adjust how the ground plane is displayed.

Use the toggle in the section header to show or hide the ground. 

Vertical Offset

Offset the ground vertically by entering a value or dragging the value horizontally.

Use the to reset the ground plane to the default position.

Ground Size

Set the ground size. This will also change the Grid size.


Ground Opacity

Choose an opacity level to make the ground more or less transparent, where zero is fully transparent and 1 is fully opaque.  You can directly enter a value or drag the value horizontally.

Use the to reset the ground plane to the default, fully-opaque value 1.0.