NukeOps. Tools for 3ds Max to Nuke workflow.

loocas | 3ds Max,maxscript,Nuke,software,technical | Sunday, January 2nd, 2011

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To celebrate a new, fresh year ahead, I sat down and wrote a script that I’ve wanted to write for some time. A simple to use, yet powerful set of tools that’d help out anyone working in 3ds Max and Nuke to get the 3ds Max Cameras and locators (be it geometry, point helpers or anything between) to Nuke, flawlessly and with as little effort as possible.

So I condensed two essential functions into a single-click button in your toolbar. :) Watch the vieo above for a thorough description with examples.

The functionality could be described as Save To File and Copy To Clipboard methods. The first one will take all the selected objects and will generate a .chan file for each of them which can then be imported back in Nuke’s Axis or Camera nodes. The second one is pretty cool and rather powerful. I wrote a set of functions that take the selected objecs and generate a full Nuke script in the memory, which is then stored in the clipboard. A simple Ctrl+V in Nuke’s node editor will then paste in the generated Nuke script with all the Cameras and Axis nodes as they were in 3ds Max’s scene. Very cool, fast and useful for more complex comping in Nuke.

Anyways, the tools are licensed under the Creative Commons License, so, feel free to enhance and share the scripts as you like, as long as you give me credits for it. ;)

DOWNLOAD, install by drag and dropping onto you 3ds Max scene. Don’t forget to copy the import_chan_file.tcl to your Nuke plugins directory.


EDIT: If you’re having trouble installing the script using the .mzp installer, just open the NukeOps.mzp file with WinRAR or WinZIP (or directly in TotalCommander for example), extract the files and copy them to the appropriate folders of you 3ds Max installation (in my case it’s the C:\Program Files\Autodesk\3ds Max 2011\ folder):

  • duber_NukeOps.mcr to C:\Program Files\Autodesk\3ds Max 2011\ui\usermacros
  • to C:\Program Files\Autodesk\3ds Max 2011\Scripts\Startup
  • all the .BMP files to C:\Program Files\Autodesk\3ds Max 2011\ui\usericons


  1. When I run the script mzp max says:
    – runtime error filein – cant open file –
    “C:\Users\Aladin\AppData\Local\Autodesk\3dsMax\2011 – 64bit\enu\UI\usermacros\dubernukeops.mcr”

    your plugin is very interesting, but without that file it doesen´t work. I´d apreciate to find out what´s wrong

    Comment by aladin — January 10, 2011 @ 04:14

  2. hi again. I Finaly found the “duber_NukeOps.mcr” in a temp directory, but when i press the button i created the listener says:
    “ERROR: NukeOps unavailable!”

    maybe you can help me


    Comment by Aladin — January 10, 2011 @ 05:18

  3. Ah… damn. That looks like a failed install. I bet you have UAC turned on. :)

    Anyways, just regularly open the .mzp file with WinZip or WinRar and copy the .ms file to the maxroot\stdplugs\stdscripts then the .mcr file to the maxroot\ui\usermacros and all the images to the maxroot\ui\usericons.
    Btw: maxroot stands for usually C:\Program Files\3ds Max 2011 (or any other version).

    Restart Max and locate the button in the UI customization dialog.

    Hope this works for you and sorry for the mess. I don’t have UAC turned on and don’t use User Profiles, so I didn’t account for these in the .mzp file. I’ll fix it when I find the time.

    Comment by loocas — January 10, 2011 @ 11:11

  4. hey loocas,

    I’m having same issues as post above.. I’ve turned my windows 7 UAC off, reset the UI interface to default but still getting “Runtime Error can’t open file – duber_NukeOps.mcr”.. any other ideas what might be wrong and how I can run it..???

    btw this looks like AMAZING tool to have.. hope I will be able to run it..

    Comment by Max — January 17, 2011 @ 00:58

  5. Hi, Max,

    honestly, I don’t know what might be causing the error, but if you manually open the MZP file and copy all the contents to the appropriate folders as described above, it should all work just fine.

    All the scripts are open-source, so you should be able to open them up in a text editor, just to check whether they’re OK.

    Comment by loocas — January 17, 2011 @ 01:23

  6. Hi Loocas

    Thanks for an amazing tool. -Just what us Max users have been needing workign with Nuke.

    Maybe I can shed some on the problems Max and Aladin have been having.
    I had excactly the same problem running 3ds max 2011. But I tested it on 3ds max 2010 and by copying “duber_NukeOps.mcr” into macroscripts I got it working.

    I hope this will help the bug fixing ;)

    Comment by la-Cour — February 6, 2011 @ 19:17

  7. Maybe I’ll screw the whole installer thingy alltogether. It’s been a pain for a lot of folks. :( Don’t really know what might be the problem as I’ve tested it rather thoroughly, but it still keeps on bugging on some people.

    Anywyas, yeah, as you said, just copy the .mcr to the macroscripts folder and the rest to the regular scirpts and icons folders and it all should be fine. :)

    Comment by loocas — February 6, 2011 @ 22:03

  8. It works! Legend! Thanks mate, good job

    Comment by Yacenty — April 5, 2011 @ 07:28

  9. Great script! Congratulations

    Comment by Miguel Salinas — May 14, 2011 @ 06:20

  10. Thanks. :) I’m glad you like it.

    Comment by loocas — May 14, 2011 @ 10:34

  11. Loocas, thanks for the pipeline integration….I haven’t tried but it looks amazing.

    Comment by JollyIMU — July 16, 2011 @ 02:23

  12. Very nice sharing guys do more like that on 3d max tutorials

    Comment by Dua Mairaj — August 12, 2011 @ 07:26

  13. Hi there. Does this work in max 2012? cant seem to get it working. Sorry!

    Comment by Dave — September 13, 2011 @ 16:33

  14. Hi Dave,

    well, I suppose it should work with Max 2012 without issues (haven’t tested it, though). Try manually installing the scripts. The MZP is a piece of shit, sorry for that. :(

    Comment by loocas — September 23, 2011 @ 17:43

  15. Looks cool Loocas – yet I have a different need that you may be able to shed light on. I am currently demoing Nuke for our studio and am having a great deal of trouble getting Nuke’s camera tracking date back into Max. The track is perfect in Nuke, with quite a complex piece of footage with focus changes etc. I have tried FBX transfers and the plugins available, i.e. NukeEm and NukeXImporter, yet none of these methods seem to be able to do the job correctly, or either they only do half the job (no focal animation e.g.). Atomsplitter, which apparently did the job very well, is nowhere to be found on the web as far as I can see. So I have hit a wall and hope you may be able to help.

    Comment by Bart Gelin — October 19, 2011 @ 11:49

  16. That sounds like a lot of a mess… :/ Also, sorry I haven’t been able to respon any sooner, I’ve been extremely busy the past couple of weeks.

    As for help. Well, sure thing, I think I can take a look at that. :) Hit me up on my e-mail and I’ll see what I can do.

    Comment by loocas — October 27, 2011 @ 17:59

  17. where do i find the button in 3ds max ui customize?

    Comment by weew — November 2, 2012 @ 21:46

  18. Under the category called duber’s tools.

    Comment by loocas — November 27, 2012 @ 22:54

  19. I just couldn’t use the script, did the manual bit, yet I can’t find the button, or the script in the ui menu. :(

    Comment by Patokid — December 18, 2012 @ 21:12

  20. I made it run!!!, thanks soo much for sharing this AWESOME script

    What I made was first copying the files just like he said,
    but when I grab the file and drop it into my 3Ds max I got an error,
    so I type in a direction folder the same route as the 3Ds max error dialog requested.
    then paste the duber_NukeOps.mcr into that folder.
    and that’s it then go to customize/ customize User Interface / Toolbars and then create a floating toolbar and drag and drop the Nuke Operations into the new button. and Thats it.
    sorry for my sucking english. hope you understand what I mean :P

    Thaks again for sharing this, I was really looking for something like that….

    Comment by Francisco — December 24, 2012 @ 21:32

  21. Hmm, if the scripts can be sourced by Max on startup, you should be able to find the button in the GUI. Though, if you’re using Max 2013, I’ve found a bug in their UNICODE bullshit that forbids using apostrophes in the category names! Can you believe it?! :D Anyways, just open the macroscript and rename the “duber’s tools” to “duber tools” or whatever. Then it’ll show up in Max 2013’s UI config dialog.

    Comment by loocas — December 31, 2012 @ 13:12

  22. No problem. :) Thanks for letting me know you found an error in the, I’ll look into it. Cheers.

    Comment by loocas — December 31, 2012 @ 13:13

  23. Cool, I created 2 paths for the macro and the icon images that the script was not loading and now it works!
    The only thing I don’t understand yet is the alt function you mention in the video. How do you use the alt button to export the 3D geometry ?.
    This script is really cool!

    Comment by Patokid — January 10, 2013 @ 01:47

  24. OK, so i get the alt, ctrl, and shift keys + the clicking, but those won’t work here. Is there a solution for this?

    Comment by Patokid — January 10, 2013 @ 01:56

  25. Hmm… that is strange, Patokid, I don’t have issues with the key combinations here. Try to disable Keyboard Shortcut Override, if it makes any difference. But I’m not really sure why it isn’t working for you.

    Comment by loocas — January 12, 2013 @ 12:55

  26. I found out that the shit+nukeops does work. The ctrl+ and alt+ functions don’t… I did disable the keyboard shortcut override as you suggest, but it made no difference.
    I’m about to install the plugin on 3ds max 2013 to see if it works there.

    Comment by Patokid — January 12, 2013 @ 22:17

  27. I came across this and its awesome, however I can figure out how to get it to work. I am brand new to 3ds max 2011, I am a maya user and have no idea what im doing in 3ds max. Can someone please step by step help me get this to work. I load my fbx file with the cameras drag and drop the NukeOps.mzp file into the scene, then what… How do I get the icon to show so I can use this? Thanks.

    Comment by Erik — February 14, 2013 @ 05:44

  28. You have to go to the Customize menu and add the button to your GUI. It can be found under the duber’s tools menu. If it isn’t there, just follow the step-by-step installation. My .mzp is fucked and some people reported it didn’t work correctly on their machines, so, that might be the case. Watch the video for more details.

    Comment by loocas — February 21, 2013 @ 12:14

  29. Nice script, really usefull. For those with bugs I had to copy the .mcr into the macroscript folder in the Appdata as well.


    Comment by Charles Guerton — February 25, 2013 @ 14:45

  30. Put the file duber_NukeOps in C:\Users\your username\AppData\Local\Autodesk\3dsMax\20** – 64bit\ENU\usermacros

    Great script works Great :)

    Comment by Tom — June 26, 2013 @ 00:45

  31. OPEN ERROR ,,,,

    Comment by admin — December 29, 2013 @ 13:54

  32. Sorry about that, vermogartivi, but I can’t really fix this. Just unpack the install package and install the files manually, that will work 100% times. I’m working on a new version that should be available soon.

    Comment by loocas — January 4, 2014 @ 11:26

  33. Great tool, thanks for sharing!

    Comment by wserlopz — January 10, 2014 @ 03:52

  34. This is a great little plugin and i use it on the regular with max13 and nuke 7, but has anyone got this to work with Max14 + nuke 8?

    Max – Error: Something went wrong!

    Comment by Rory — March 10, 2014 @ 15:07

  35. Hi, Rory, what seems to be the problem? I’m using this in Max 2014 without issues. If there were any, I’d have fixed and released the code myself.

    Comment by loocas — March 19, 2014 @ 14:23

  36. Great tool man!

    Comment by zuza — April 7, 2014 @ 12:18

  37. Hey Lukas, thanks so much for making this open source, the matrix and rotation conversions would have taken me a lot of time to figure out, thanks a bunch!


    Comment by Christoph — September 23, 2014 @ 13:14

  38. Hey loocas, I can’t tell you what exactly the problem is. I’ve been using a work around. Basically when i first open a max file, Nuke Ops doesn’t work. I always have to drag the ‘’ file into the viewport. Then it works a treat.

    Considering the greatness of this plugin, I honestly don’t have a problem with dragging to the DAG all the time!

    Thanks again.

    Comment by Rory — September 25, 2014 @ 16:41

  39. Rory, that might be an incorrect installation of the plugin. Try manually copying the and the import_chan_file.tcl into your startup scripts directory. Then manually copy the duber_NukeOps.mcr to your macroscripts directory. Now it should start without problems. My installation package is buggy, unfortunately, that is the reason it didn’t copy the files to their correct destinations.

    Sorry for that.

    Comment by loocas — September 26, 2014 @ 01:34

  40. No probs, Christoph. :)

    Comment by loocas — September 26, 2014 @ 01:35

  41. Just in case anyone encounters a similar issue:

    Try animating a camera in Max that simply rotates around itself 360° and export that to Nuke.
    For me the rotation was flipping in between:

    Changing ‘quatToEuler’ to ‘quatToEuler2’ in the tool’s code fixed the issue!

    Comment by Christoph — October 6, 2014 @ 17:16

  42. Hi man!, I’ve been testing the tool in version 9 and there are some problems, can you check it out?


    Comment by Jose Enriquez — February 8, 2015 @ 20:36

  43. It doesn’t work with Nuke 9? I’m gonna have to update the tool as I’ve upgraded to Nuke 9 recently myself, but haven’t had the chance to bump into any issues, yet. I’ll definitely look into it. I’ve been planning on upgrading the tools anyways, just haven’t found the time yet. Cheers for letting me know.

    Comment by loocas — February 11, 2015 @ 16:54

  44. Nice and thank you, I have to translate the camera and helpers through nuke 8 and then copy to 9.

    Comment by Jose Enriquez — February 11, 2015 @ 22:51

  45. This works great, thanks a lot mate. (Max 2015 and Nuke 8). I haven’t tried the installer though; just copied the files as suggested =)

    Comment by Tiago Silva — April 15, 2015 @ 16:20

  46. wow it’s work thanks a lot mate

    Comment by GROSIR VIMAX — September 4, 2015 @ 01:46

  47. Nice Script is still working within Nuke Studio and Nuke 9.0 in combination with 3dsmax 2016.
    Great Script saved my ass a lot of times.

    Comment by bailsone — April 27, 2016 @ 22:41

  48. Cheers. I’m glad the script helped you out. :)

    Comment by loocas — April 27, 2016 @ 22:58

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