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KeyShot 5 - New Features

KeyShot 5 introduces enhanced usability and pro level features to speed up your rendering and animation workflow. The KeyShot 5 interface has been made more simple to use with new ways to share resources, faster ways to work with materials, more powerful animation features and advanced capabilities that allow professionals to make their workflow more efficient and take their visuals to the next level. With this new version, the imporvements are focused on these four main areas:

  • Streamlined Interface - KeyShot 5 features a fresh, streamlined interface that provides faster ways to access your projects, adjust your settings and share KeyShot resources.
  • Rendering Speed - A new set of tools that allows you to work more efficiently with geometry and materials, with updates to features that bring more options and deliver new functionality.
  • Powerful Animation - New abilities within KeyShot Animation that extend how objects are able to be moved and represented for more options in creating powerful 3d visual compositions.
  • Advanced Features - Pro level features that allow more options to import and export 3D data, speed workflow and bring more functionality to existing Pro features

Pattern Updates

KeyShot 5.0 introduced the ability to Pattern separate instances of models for quick copying and appearance studies. Patterns have been completely updated with KeyShot 5.1 adding the ability to Edit Patterns, set Scattering and automatically adjust the camera and the pattern is created.  

How it works
The new Scattering options allows you to randomize the model selected to be patterned.  To set scattering options, expand Scattering from the Pattern Tool dialogue box. The scattering options differ if you are using linear pattern or circular pattern. In  the Linear pattern scattering options you will find Displacement and Y Rotation. Displacement introduces deviation in the spacing of each of the axis present in the pattern. Y Rotation will randomly rotate each instance along the y axis. In the circular pattern scattering options you will find sliders and inputs for Radial, Angular and Y Rotation scattering. Radial will randomize the radius of each patterned model. Angular will randomize the angle between each patterned model. Y Rotation will randomly rotate the patterned models around the Y-axis. Adjust as needed for the amount of scattering you desire.

The new Adjust Camera option will update your camera view to fit the patterned models. Selecting this option will fit the patterned models within the view dynamically as the pattern settings are adjusted. Deselecting it will stop the camera from being adjusted to fit the pattern.  Note: This is for Pattern Tool assistance only. Even though the view will be maintained when the Pattern Tool is closed, the camera adjustment will not be saved to the current camera or a new camera.   

To edit a pattern, right-click any instance of the pattern and select Edit Pattern. The Pattern Tool will appear with the same edit options available with previously entered settings. Edits to the pattern will not affect the appearance of individual parts, with all materials and textures maintained, excluding patterned parts that are removed.

Advanced Procedurals

Six new KeyShot Procedural Textures are available in KeyShot 5.1, including Brushed (3D), Camouflage (3D), Lattice Circular (2D), Lattice Polygon (2D), Spots (3D) and Wood Adv. (3D). These add a total of thirteen unique and highly customizable procedural textures that can be used with any Material Type or in combination with any KeyShot material preset.

How it works
To apply one of the new procedural textures, edit the material and select the Texture tab. Under Texture Type, select from the list of 2D Procedurals or 3D Procedurals the texture you would like to apply to the model. Settings that are unique to the procedural will appear below the Mapping Tool button.

Render Camera/Viewsets in Queue

In KeyShot 5.1 you can now add all your saved Cameras and Viewsets directly to the Render Queue. This allows you to complete the setup of all views, then select the Cameras and Viewsets you want to render to the Queue all at once with the Queue listing the Camera or Viewset added while offering prioritization of render jobs.  

How it works
After saving Cameras and Viewsets in the Camera tab, click Render on the main toolbar and select  Queue. In the Render Queue, click on the Add cameras button on the right. This will open a window that displays all saved Cameras and Viewsets. Any Camera and Viewset can be added at once or selected individually through the Camera Queue dialogue. Check the box for each Camera or Viewset you would like to add to the Render Queue and click Add. Manage your camera renders just like a normal queued render.

Sørensen Leather Materials

KeyShot 5.1 introduces exclusive access to the full line of Sørensen Leather materials through KeyShot Cloud. Sørensen Leather is the world supplier of high quality leather hides across many industries. The new KeyShot materials allow colors and textures to be matched exactly with the hides and viewed under different lighting.

How it works
All Sørensen Leather hides are available to download through KeyShot Cloud. Search @sorensen to view the full line. Drag and drop the material from KeyShot Cloud to the real time viewer or click the Download button.

Multi-Touch Support

KeyShot now has full support for devices with a multi-touch interface running Windows. Users of small touch-enabled tablets to desktop displays may now compliment their workflow with touch-enabled viewing and editing of KeyShot scenes. Change and save camera views, drag and drop colors and switch to Presentation Mode for uninhibited full screen viewing of your realtime render.

How it works
Multi-touch support comes completely integrated within KeyShot. Simply open KeyShot on a touch-enabled device and use it just as you normally would, but via touch commands. The following touch screen gestures are provided in KeyShot:

- Tumble/rotate camera - one-finger drag
- Zoom - two-finger pinch
- Pan - three-finger drag  
- Reset camera - five-finger touch
- Right mouse button menu -  touch and hold
- Drag and drop assets - one-finger drag and drop

Retina Display Support

KeyShot runs natively on Mac OS X and now comes with Retina Display support. This applies to all Apple devices, including Macbook Pro laptops and iMac 5k displays. To activate Retina mode, click the Retina mode button located on the ribbon, or View, Retina mode from the menu bar.

PTC Creo 3.0 Support

KeyShot now has support for PTC Creo 3.0 with direct import as well as a free downloadable plugin. As in previous versions, the plugin maintains all color assignments and assembly structure while allowing you to select simplified representations and refine tessellation quality.  Export of mechanisms using .FRA files  is accepted and through the plugin you may maintain a Live Link to the PTC Creo model to send geometry updates to KeyShot as needed. Visit to download the latest plugin for PTC Creo.

CINEMA 4D Support

KeyShot now supports import of Maxon’s CINEMA 4D (.c4d) file format.  Current features support the import of geometry, scene hierarchy, symmetry, primary (topmost) material, materials assigned to vertex selections, layer visibility, part animations and camera animations. Multiple material import, layer groups and material groups will be supported in a future release.

How it works
In Cinema 4D, set the material/colors you want to import into KeyShot as the topmost material. The source .c4d file should be resaved from the most recent and up to date version of CINEMA 4D with the Save Polygon Objects for Melange Exchange checkbox enabled. Access this checkbox from the Edit,  Preferences dialog box or the Document panel. In newer versions of CINEMA 4D this option is found on the Files panel as the checkbox labelled as Save polygons for Melange as well as the additional checkbox labelled as Save Animation for Melange. Older .c4d files with only mesh geometry in them should load fine, but any other files with procedural geometry or deformed objects may load incomplete data or display an import error saying the file does not contain 3d geometry, unless first re-saved with the Melange checkbox enabled. From KeyShot, select the .c4d file to import. Set import options as needed.

Animation Playback, Import and Rendering

In KeyShot Pro, users are now be able to open KeyShot .bip files containing animations and playback or render the animations without the KeyShot Animation add-on. This will also support animation imported through the PTC Creo plugin, Solid Edge, and FBX. KeyShot Pro Turntable animation is now part of the Animation Wizard. Creation of turntable animation has been moved to the KeyShot Animation window and all animations are now visible on the animation timeline.

How it works
The Animation Timeline can be accessed by clicking the Animation icon on the main toolbar.  If a .bip file or imported file contains an animation, the animation will appear in the Timeline. Hit the Play button to play the animation or scrub through the animation by dragging within the Timeline indicator area.   Animations can not be edited, except for time settings and duration.   

To create a Turntable animation, select the Animation Wizard button. Select the Turntable option under Model/part animation. Note: Other part and camera animations will be grayed out, unless the Animation add-on is installed. Turntable animations may also be added through the scene tree at the model level.

New Upgrade Options

As of the release of KeyShot 5.1, users of KeyShot CAD Edition (KeyShot versions bundled with a CAD application) can add KeyShot Animation and KeyShotVR add-ons for the standard list price, and also upgrade to KeyShot Pro NL (standalone) for $1,495. Animation and KeyShotVR serial codes are activated directly from within KeyShot. Users upgrading to KeyShot Pro will obtain a "UPC" upgrade code which will not require an old/existing KeyShot serial code.

Currently, these upgrade options apply to the following products:

- KeyShot for Solid Edge
- KeyShot for IronCAD
- KeyShot for SpaceClaim
- KeyShot for Geomagic Design (Alibre)
- KeyShot for PowerShape
- KeyShot for ArtCAM
- KeyShot for ShoeMaker

The above is information is correct at the time of publishing. The upgrade options and eligibility are subject to changes by Luxion, the developers of KeyShot.

KeyShot Cloud

Share and download your most loved KeyShot resources. KeyShot Cloud is an online library where you can download new resources, and share your own custom assets. Opening the KeyShot Cloud enables easy drag-and-drop downloading of new resources into your local KeyShot Library, and quick search features and filters to find the perfect resources for your scene.

How it works
The KeyShot Cloud is accessible directly from inside KeyShot. When a user is logged into the KeyShot Cloud, they may browse, download, and upload KeyShot resources. Currently supported KeyShot resources are Materials, Backplates, Textures and Environments.  

Please note: KeyShot does not move any of your KeyShot resources or scenes outside of your local folder locations. When a resource is uploaded, it is copied to Luxion’s secure server. No unrelated data or personal information is collected. A user’s uploads, downloads and likes are tracked in the KeyShot Cloud, so they are able to access them from any location.

Downloading and sharing resources on the KeyShot Cloud requires sign-up and activation. Register for free inside KeyShot after clicking the KeyShot Cloud icon from the KeyShot toolbar. A valid email address is required.

Activating the KeyShot Cloud inside KeyShot displays the KeyShot Cloud window.  Like the other windows, the KeyShot Cloud can be docked and undocked. Resources are searchable using the search bar and filters. The tabs will display the most recent resources available or your search/filtered results. Thumbnail view or list view can be toggled from the icons in the upper right corner. Browse through the resources with the scroll bar and display additional details by selecting a resource.

Download Resources
To download a resource, select an item and press Add to Library from the detail pane. Resources can also be added by selecting Add from the thumbnail view or multi-selecting and selecting Add selected to KeyShot from the right-click menu. Downloading a resource will add it to the corresponding Downloads folder in the KeyShot Library window. From the Downloads folder, users may drag-and-drop resources to move them to other folders.

Upload Resources
Resources can be uploaded by selecting Upload in the Library window when one or more resources are selected in your KeyShot library. A resource can also be uploaded by right-clicking the resource and selecting Upload to KeyShot Cloud. Before an item is uploaded, the user will be prompted for the Name, Description and Tags of the resource. The thumbnail image is rendered automatically in the Cloud. Currently, upload supports KeyShot Materials, Backplates, Textures and Environments.  

KeyShot Cloud Settings
The Gear icon located in the upper right corner of the KeyShot Cloud window allows user to Logout or change their Account Settings. Through the Account Settings, users have the option to update their password, name, display name and email.  

Password Recovery
Users may recover lost or forgotten passwords inside KeyShot after clicking the KeyShot Cloud icon from the KeyShot toolbar. Select the Recover button and follow the on-screen prompts to have a recovery email sent.

Welcome Screen

Faster access to your most recent work and latest KeyShot news. When you start KeyShot a new menu appears providing access to your recently opened scenes. Quick access to the latest KeyShot information, news and featured assets from the KeyShot Cloud is shown on the left side of the window.

How it works
The menu will show automatically when KeyShot is first installed. To turn off the menu, go to File, Preferences... and, in the General settings, uncheck Show news window at application startup.

Ribbon Interface

A new dockable tools menu for quick access to the most common tools and preferences. From the Ribbon, CPU core usage can be set and paused, Scene Sets can be switched, and cameras can be controlled. Additionally, one-click access to Material Templates, HDRI Editor, NURBS mode, Performance mode and the KeyShotVR wizard is available.

How it works
The Ribbon is located beneath the Main menu by default when KeyShot is installed. The Ribbon can be toggled on/off by selecting Window, Show Ribbon or pressing the R-key. By selecting the grips on the top/left of the Ribbon, it can be undocked and left floating or docked along the sides, bottom or top of the KeyShot workspace.

Favorites Tab

The new Favorites tab allows users to create collections of and gain quicker access to your favorite resources. Located in the KeyShot Library window, users can create collections of resources for specific scenes they create.  

How it works
Favorites are collections of Backplates, Colors, Environments, Materials and Textures. Favorite collections are created by right-clicking on a resource and selecting Add to Favorite, Add to new Favorite or clicking the Favorites tab, right-clicking on Favorites and selecting Add new Favorite. Any KeyShot resource in the Library can be added to a collection in the Favorites tab, including resources downloaded from the KeyShot Cloud.  

Example: A new Favorite is created named Automotive. In this Favorite, all the resources (Materials, Backplates, Environments, etc.) that are used for particular automotive scenes are added providing faster access to those resources.

Material Display

See materials more accurately before applying them to your model. The display of all materials has been updated to more accurately show texture, opacity, shadows, refraction and reflection. The resource thumbnails on the KeyShot Cloud are also dynamically generated with all uploaded materials rendered online at time of upload.

How it works
The KeyShot Materials Library and KeyShot Cloud both show thumbnails with the new material display scene while the In-project library is differentiated by the classic material sphere for faster updating. Display options for KeyShot resources now includes thumbnail or list view with an exposed slider to adjust thumbnail size. To re-render/refresh the resources in any area, right-click and select Render Thumbnails or Reload on the KeyShot Cloud inline browser.


Duplicate models in KeyShot without increasing file size. Instancing of top level groups or models is available within KeyShot as a Pattern tool. All instances can be treated separately for quick appearance studies or linked to apply materials quickly, but will all update when LiveLinking or update geometry is used.  

How it works
Patterns of models or groups of models are created through the Project window Scene tab. Right-click on a top level model or group and select Pattern from the menu. The Pattern Tool dialogue window appears with options for Linear or Circular pattern and corresponding settings for each. Additional options to Center and Resize Environment are available below the pattern settings.

KeyShot will display a preview of the pattern in the real-time window, updating as settings are adjusted. The model instances will also be visible in the Project, Scene tree. While the Pattern Tool is active, other KeyShot settings can be adjusted, animations assigned and materials applied to the instanced models. Once the desired pattern is achieved, selecting Ok will accept the instanced models and any settings applied to them.

Retain Textures and Labels

Change materials while retaining all textures and labels. When assigning materials from the library to parts in the real-time window, simple options allow you to keep textures and/or labels applied to the part.

How it works
When a material is dragged from the Library to a part in the real-time window, Alt is held down to retain textures and/or Ctrl is held down to retain labels. Each key should be held down prior to releasing the mouse button in order to apply the material and retain the textures/labels.


More procedurals to perfect the appearance of your parts. Seven new procedural textures have been added to KeyShot, including Brushed, Cellular, Cloth Weave, Color Gradient, Fiber Weave, and Scratches.  

How it works
Procedural textures are accessible on the Project, Materials tab under Textures. The procedural is chosen from the Texture Type pull down menu with settings specific for each procedural texture appearing below. The procedural textures work as any other texture, applied completely independent of Material type or Library material preset. Procedural textures can be turned off by selecting None from the Texture Type pull down menu or toggled off/on by selecting the checkbox for each texture swatch.

Image Editor

Adjust the look of your image as it renders. New image editing options allow you to edit the Exposure, Color and add Effects while your image renders. Save and continue to make adjustments to create other versions of your image.

How it works
From the render options screen, set the Image Output options and press Render. In the Render Output window you will see a new toolbar with image editing and view options. Select the pencil icon to Show effects panel.

From the Adjustments pane, adjust Exposure, Color and Effects independent of each other. Through Exposure, control Gamma and Brightness. Through Color, control Hue, Saturation and White point. Through Effects, control Bloom and Vignette. All changes can be seen in real-time as the image renders. Once the image is fully rendered, a green check will appear in the toolbar, allowing you to save the image with changes applied.  


Render, animate and work with large scenes faster than ever before. Significant performance improvements for large scenes of up to 125% are now possible with optimizations to the KeyShot render engine. File size decreases while viewing and render speeds increase with Instancing.

How it works
The core of the KeyShot render engine is optimized to work with certain materials faster showing up to a 125% faster frame per second (fps) response time.  

Fade Animation

Quickly apply an animation that fades parts from one opacity level to another. Adjust opacity of parts and groups on-the-fly and see it update in real-time as animations are built.

How it works
The fade effect on a part or group of parts is created just like any other part animation. Right-click on the part or group of parts in the Project, Scene tree and select Animation, Fade. Adjust the Fade From/Fade To values to the desired setting along with easing and duration of fade through the properties to the right of the Animation Timeline. Using the Animation Wizard, select the Fade option as the Animation Type, then continue through the wizard selecting parts and adjusting fade settings.

Motion Blur

Your models in motion. KeyShot Motion blur provides a real-time preview of motion applied to models where movement is blurred. Capture the motion of objects as they rotate or move across the screen before you even play an animation or render an image.

How it works
To apply Motion Blur to objects in motion, check Motion Blur in the Project, Settings, Advanced options. If you already have objects with animations applied which move the object, the real-time view will update to show the object in motion.

Motion Blur can be seen quickly after turning the option on, by adding a Translation animation to an object or an Orbit animation to a Camera. The amount of motion blur is controlled through the Animation settings by adjusting how fast and how far an object or camera is moving. When Motion Blur is enabled, the real-time preview of the motion is dependant on the FPS setting.

Animation Properties

Adjust your animations faster. A new Animation Properties pane is located in the animation timeline when an animation is selected. The Animation Properties show all the settings available for each Animation type.  

How it works
Previously, animation properties were shown in the Project window when an animation was selected. These are now in the Animation window with additional options and settings. To show the properties of any animation, select an animation from the list located to the left of the Timeline. Animation properties will appear to the right of the Timeline. They will also be displayed when selecting an animation in the Project, Scene tree or when selecting Properties from the Project, Scene, Animation tab.


Switch cameras in your animation with the click of a button. KeyShot Animation users can now add camera switch events to change cameras on the animation timeline to easily incorporate other view angles without having to stitch together separate animations afterwards.  

How it works
With two camera animations set up, right-click on the camera you will start with and select Camera Switch Event to select the camera you want to switch to. This will add the event to the timeline, shown as an orange marker on a separate line. Select and drag the marker to the point where you want to switch to the other camera. Hit play, and watch as the animation switches cameras automatically.

NURBS Ray-tracing (Pro)

NURBS data import from your favorite modeling system delivers accurate geometry with smoother edges. NURBS ray-tracing allows the rendering of imported NURBS data within KeyShot. The advantage is crisper visuals and smaller file sizes over data imported as triangle that can display edges and gaps on
close detail shots. NURBS import is currently available for all geometry formats, including Creo, CATIA, Inventor, NX, Rhino, SolidWorks, Solid Edge, STEP, IGES, Parasolid and ALIAS.

How it works
Non-uniform rational basis spline (NURBS) is a mathematical model used in 3D graphic software that provides a more accurate, more flexible representation of 3D shapes and surfaces. The advantage NURBS ray-tracing provides over traditional polygonal/mesh ray tracing is a higher-quality images with smoother lines, especially on edges and curves where approximations with the polygons can cause the surface to break apart or show the tessellation.  

When importing a model into KeyShot, files that contain NURBS geometry will trigger the option to 'Import NURBS data' from the Geometry section of the Import dialogue window. Selecting this option and clicking 'Import' immediately loads the model in the KeyShot viewport If you have a .bip file with both triangle and NURBS data, you can go to Settings > NURBS Rendering or click the icon on the Ribbon to enable.

Sun & Sky System (Pro)

A new Sun & Sky system for automatic creation of physically accurate geographic lighting. Preset resolutions and locations together with day selection, time and turbidity sliders allow the creation of unlimited daylight scenarios.

How it works
KeyShot Sun & Sky is accessed through the HDRI Editor that comes with all licenses of KeyShot Pro. Selecting the Sun & Sky tab displays the settings to create custom sunlit environments with the option to keep your current lighting, adjustments and environment settings.  

To create a Sun & Sky HDRI, first select the preferred resolution. Preset locations from around the World can be selected and time adjusted to position the sun in your environment. For a custom location, choose Custom from the Location pulldown or simply change coordinates. Turbidity controls the haziness or cloudiness of the environment. Select Generate HDRI to create the Sun & Sky environment. Pins and further adjustments can be added to any Sun & Sky environment. Sun & Sky HDRI’s can be saved just like other HDRI’s by selecting File, Save.

Perspective Matching (Pro)

Real-time perspective matching that takes all the guesswork out of matching models to a backplate. With simple guides KeyShot allows two-point or three-point perspective matching directly within the real-time window.

How it works
When a backplate is applied to the scene, press the Match Perspective button in the Environment, Backplate Image settings. Guides for X (red), Y (green) and Z (blue) directions will appear on the screen. The Perspective Matching options allow a choice between Two-Point and Three-Point Perspective and a toggle to Lock Rotation. Match the X, Y, Z guides to the corresponding perspective lines in the image. Once all adjustments are made, press the green checkmark to accept the changes and create a new camera view. Edit the guides by pressing the Match Perspective button again.

Scene Sets (Pro)

All your scenes in one, with multiple cameras or Viewsets. Scene Sets give you the ability to have access to all design iterations and camera views in a single file. Toggle parts on and off, switch cameras with ease and flow through the sets with a single hotkey.

How it works
Now called Scene Sets, Model Sets have been updated to included assigned Cameras and Viewsets. Import your models, duplicate or pattern a model within KeyShot. Create Camera Views or Viewsets from the Projects, Camera tab. Viewsets can each have different Environments or Backplates applied to them. Scene Sets are available in all licenses of KeyShot Pro.

To create a Scene Set, right-click Scene Sets in the Projects, Scene tab and select Add Scene Set. Name your Scene Set and select a specific Camera or Viewset to use. These can be changed after saving a Scence Set, by selecting a Scene Set in the Scene tree and changing the Name or Camera in the Scene Set properties. To switch between Scene Sets, double-click the Scene Set to switch to it the Scene tree or use Shift-M to toggle through Scene Sets.

ZPR/STL Output (Pro)

Support for the most common 3D printer input files. With the ability to output both STL and ZPR from KeyShot, you are one step closer to a physical model. Support for 3D Systems ProJet (formerly ZCorp ZPrinter) and support for Stereolithography files (.STL), a common output format for any 3D printer, allows export of  files that can be opened in slicing software and 3D applications that support the import STL and ZPR files. Both export options are available in all licenses of KeyShot Pro.

How it works
To export a ZPR file from KeyShot,  select Export, Export to ZPR… from the File menu. Options for ZPR export include Subdivision type, model scale and export units.  

To export an STL file from KeyShot,  select Export, Export to STL… to save out an STL file. Options for STL export include Subdivision type, model scale and export units.

HDRI Editor Updates (Pro)

The real-time HDRI Editor now features more ways to adjust the HDRI and lighting options including a new Sun & Sky system to create physically accurate geographical lighting. The HDRI Editor is available with all licenses of KeyShot Pro.

How it works
Open the HDRI Editor by selecting the Project, Environment tab and clicking on the HDRI preview. The HDRI Editor will open with three tabs: Adjustments, Pins and Sun & Sky. From the Pins tab, the new Blend Mode features color blending options including Add, Blend, Alpha and Screen. The new Falloff Mode allows falloff to be set From Edge, Linear, Quadratic, Rectangular or Circular.  The new Image Pin type allows for images of up to 32-bit to be placed on your HDRI and adjusted to achieve a desired reflection or effect. Pins can also be moved up (above) or down (below) from each other.

The Sun & Sky tab allows the creation of an HDRI using coordinates and date with options for Resolution and Turbidity. See the Sun & Sky section for more information about how this works.

Related Pages & Links
KeyShot Add-On Options
Links to KeyShot website

Are you using KeyShot 3 or KeyShot 4?

    ... you are eligible to buy the KeyShot 5 upgrade license.

    There are several significant features and additions to KeyShot 5.

    Go to our pricing page for more information on upgrading options.

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