Skip to content or navigation

Japan’s Shade 3D software now at version 14 and shipping

Shade 3D version 14 is now out and shipping


Shade 3D, a long standing leading 3D software package descended on the Mac from Japan, is now at version 14. Last week England’s Mirye Software and Tokyo-based Frontier, Inc., announced the release of Shade 3D 14 for Mac and Windows.

Shade 3D 14 will have a slightly different development and release model. Unlike other monolithic releases of the product, version 14 will ship with some key features now and other key features will ship throughout version 14’s life cycle. For this initial release Shade 14 includes key new or improved items:

  • Line Offset Tool — allow for offsets on one or both sides of a control line, this tool will greatly aid the creation of things like staircases, etc
  • Redesigned Text Tool — better 3D text that works with OpenType and TrueType fonts
  • LCSM (Least Squares Conformal Map unwrapping is integrated into the Unwrap Editor for unwrapping arbitrary surfaces: new support also supports unwrapping multiple UV maps
  • Granular Render Quality Control — enables the setting of render quality for each surface or light in a scene.
  • Line Thickness for Surfaces and Poly Mesh — aids in sealing objects for 3D printing for architectural modeling
  • Boolean Triangle and Divide Options
  • Display Back Faces by Color — quickly find back faces through color mode
  • Apple Retina Display Support
  • NVIDIA Real Time Stereoscopic Display
  • SketchUp 2013 Import Mode plus legacy SU model import

There are many other smaller improvements and features, including 1.3 GB of HDRI background images and over 1 GB  of library objects, samples, textures and more.

01 - A scene from a demo reel for Shade 3D 14.

01 – A scene from a demo reel for Shade 3D 14.

Shade 3D 14 is available in three models: Professional (499.USD), Standard (249.USD) and Basic (99.USD). It is a free update for any Shade 13 user who bought their license after 22 June 2013, and there is a free Shade 3D for Unity available for download as well.

02 - Much is possible with this excellent Mac stalwart program from Japan.

02 – Much is possible with this excellent Mac stalwart program from Japan.

The Mac OS X version is available through the Mac App Store. To learn more visit them online here:

Architosh Analysis

The demo reel for Shade 14 is quite impressive…clearly some of the best animated work we’ve seen ever from this program and one of the coolest concepts too. Shade is one of the oldest desktop 3D programs in existence, getting its start on the Mac in the late 1980’s alongside programs like StrataVision 3D, Electric Image, RayDream Studio, Infini-D and Amapi.

There is a reported 200,000 users of Shade 3D worldwide with a very high concentration in Japan its home market. The other day we spoke about Carrara 8.5 and its reported history of at one time having 200,000 users. Of all the early Mac originating 3D software packages, Shade 3D has maintained its large user base and kept it growing, despite the fact that e-frontier didn’t market it very hard in the US. Poser has a strong connection to Shade due to the fact that e-frontier America once purchased the product. Smith Micro then acquired the US division of e-frontier capturing Poser in the process. Shade has several digital dolls available for it much like Poser and DAZ 3D characters.


Reader Comments

Comments for this story are closed


INSIDER Xpresso 
Monthly newsletter with a focus on emTech (AI, machine learning, AAD, AR, robotics, 3d printing, and smart cities) its impact on CAD professionals.)

Subscribe now — it’s free!.

INSIDER Xpresso keeps CAD industry professionals up-to-date on next-gen emerging technologies (emTech) that will revolutionize the worlds of AEC and manufacturing and design. As an Xpresso reader, you will hear from some of the most important voices inventing and using the very latest tech in areas such as AI, machine learning, algorithm-aided design (AAD), AR, VR, MR, 3D printing, 3D computer vision, robotics, and SmartCities technologies.

Each issue arrives in your inbox on the first Sunday of the month. Issue #1 arrived on March 3, 2019. Full archives and easy navigation for your pleasure. Enjoy! 

Sign-up for our monthly newsletter
architosh INSIDER Xpresso.

  • Architosh will never pass any of your information onto third parties.
  • For more information read our privacy policy.
  • It is easy to unsubscribe at any time. Follow the links in the newletter footer.

(Recommended. These infrequent sponsored emails help us to provide our Xpresso newsletter for free.)

INSIDER Membership

Read 3 free Feature or Analysis articles per month.

Or, subscribe now for unlimited full access to Architosh.