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Adjusting Smoothing Levels in the Assembly Room


Controls for modelling and rendering levels of smoothing can be found in the Carrara 8.5 assembly room. Users no longer need to enter the modelling room to adjust these values.

Process Overview

  • Load SubD Model
  • Select the Mesh
  • Access Smoothing Controls
  • Adjust Smoothing Level


This tutorial assumes that the user has properly set up Carrara and knows how to load content from the Smart Content Pane or the Content Pane. It assumes the user knows the difference between a SubD model and a standard model.

Load SubD Model

In order to use smoothing on a model it must be a SubD model. Genesis and Genesis 2 are SubD capable as are figures like the Sub Dragon.

If the figure is not a SubD model then the smoothing controls will not be visible in the General tab.

A figure can be converted to a SubD figure in Carrara 8.5 by adding smoothing. Select the figure and go to Edit–>Smooth Objects. Check the the “Change Smoothing” box and select the “Smooth” radio button.

Smoothing can be added to legacy parametric figures but it should be done in the last step of the workflow. Once smoothing is added the figure will not pose and will act as a static object.

Select the Mesh

 Mesh Level LineIn order for the Smoothing options to show up in the General Tab the mesh level line of the model must be selected. This line is the third line down in the hierarchy. For the Genesis figure it is the Actor Line.

The mesh line can be identified for other figures as it won't have any children.  Access Smoothing Controls

Access Smoothing Controls

Smoothing Controls for render and model level smoothing can be found in the Assembly Room under the General Tab.

To access the controls Click the 'General Tab' and look under the section labelled with the model's name.

Adjust Smoothing Level

Carrara 8.5 gives the user the option to adjust two levels of smoothing:

  • Modeling Level
  • Rendering Level

Modeling Level affects how smooth the mesh appears in the view port. Rendering Level affects how smooth the model looks in render. It is possible to have a low modeling level to save resources while working but a high rendering level.

Adjusting the value for either option can be done with the slider. The user can also click on the numeric value and enter in any integer value.

 Sliders  Numeric Value

The value for render level smoothing must be greater than or equal to the value for modeling level smoothing. If modeling level is increased beyond the value of render level then rendering level will automatically be increased. If rendering level is lowered below the value of the modeling level then modeling level will automatically be decreased.

High levels of modeling level smoothing may cause Carrara to crash. Each level of smoothing increases the polygon count by a factor of four. Keep this in mind when choosing an appropriate modeling level.

High levels of rendering level smoothing can greatly increase render time. In some cases renders with high levels of render level smoothing can crash. Please make sure your system is robust enough to handle the rendering level smoothing value you choose.


Smoothing levels can now be adjusted in the Assembly Room. These controls can be accessed when the mesh level of the model hierarchy is selected in the Instances Tray. The controls are found within the General Tab of the Assembly Room.