A new ZBrush-to-Sketchfab Exporter is out

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Attention! This is an older version of the Zbrush exporter, we recommend that you download the latest version here.

Big news for ZBrush users: with the Zbrush summit coming this weekend, we’ve just released version 2 of the ZBrush exporter! Optimizing your models and publishing straight to Sketchfab is now easier than ever.


In addition to improved performance and reliability, the following new features are now included in the exporter plug-in:

  • Build UVs
  • Bake painting, normal, and ambient occlusion (AO) texture maps
  • Decimate (reduce polygon count)
  • Define a maximum texture size

Whether you’re new to the exporter or just need to upgrade, you can get it here.

This video walks through the new features and upload process. You can find more detailed instructions and screenshots below.

After installing the plug-in, you can find it in the ZPlugin menu. The process is fairly straightforward – just follow the tool’s steps in order.

1 – Account log

Enter your API key, which you can always find in your password settings. You can also check for updates to the exporter from this section.


2 – Prepare Maps

Next, build your UVs and bake the textures. Painting, normal, and AO maps are all enabled by default, but you can turn them on or off at the bottom of this section. Between build UVs and Bake, you may want to Restore Visibility, so you can see your whole model again. These steps may take some time, depending on complexity of the textures and the number of subtools in your scene.


3 – Decimate

Next, run Preprocess followed by the Decimate function. This can also take quite a while for big models. The default level of decimation is 25%, which you can change with the slider.


4 – Upload options

Enter a model title (required), description, tags, and mark it as private if necessary (PRO accounts only).

You can also set a maximum texture size here. This is especially useful for models with lots of big textures – we like to avoid browsers crashing due to VRAM limits 😛

Finally, click Upload!


Here’s the result:

We hope you enjoy the update, and we’ll be looking forward to your uploads! As always, if you have questions, comments, or concerns, feel free to reply here or drop us a line.

How to publish ZBrush 3D models online with Sketchfab from Sketchfab


About the author

James Green

Senior Product Specialist | Sketchfab


  • Kent Brooks says:

    Does Sketchfab exporter work with Zbrush R8. I’m not able to get it to show up in my plugin list?

  • James Green says:

    Hmm, can you try installing it in the ZPlugs 64-bit folder instead of the default 32-bit folder?

  • Kent Brooks says:

    Yes I tried in both folders. I see that there may be a newer version. I will give it a try. 🙂

  • Laura says:

    It won’t let me decimate the model, it says I need to preprocess the model first but I’ve already done that now three times and still can’t decimate? Anything I can do to fix this?

  • Kent Brooks says:

    I am not able to get sketchfab to show up in my plugin menu. What version of Zbrush are you using? I use Version 4r8

  • James Green says:

    Some changes have been made in ZBrush 4R7 and above in the decimation tools. As a result, we cannot use/call the decimation features from another script anymore.

    The only thing to do is to press “Decimate All” in “Decimation Master” palette (in plugin menu) instead of clicking on “Decimate” button in Sketchfab plugin.

  • Laura says:

    I’ve been able to upload my model to the site but now it’s coming up with a semi transparent chequerboard over the top. My textures are on the model but this chequerboard is like a layer over everything. Any ideas as to why this is and how I can get rid of it?

  • James Green says:

    Are you using Safari? See: https://forum.sketchfab.com/t/issue-with-viewer-on-safari/18089

    It’s a known issue, but it’s really a bug on Apple’s end. We’re considering a workaround, but it’s tricky.

  • Laura says:

    Oh okay, yeah I’m using safari, I’ll try using a different browser.

  • Laura says:

    Works perfectly in chrome, thank you for your help 🙂

  • is it supposed to be working for Zbrush R7 ??
    I did put everythink in the good folders but when I launch Zbrush and look under zplugin … no sketchfab.
    is there a fix for that ?

  • James Green says:

    Did you try the ZPlugs 64-bit folder instead of the default 32-bit folder?

  • Laura Garcia says:

    yes I did

  • rom says:

    this hangs zbrush 2019, is it still a thing ?

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