Instant 3D

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File Format
Name Instant 3D
Extension(s) .i3d, .e3d
Released 1995?[1]

Instant 3D was a program that allows the user to to pose 3D models and text, and render them to in image.

It appears to have been the predecessor of Simply 3D; they are obviously the same piece of software when run, and the copyright date of the only available copy of Instant 3D has it predating that of Simply 3D by 1 year. Instant 3D describes itself as released by a company called "Visual Software", whereas Simply 3D was released by Micrografx (which was later bought by Corel); it looks as if Micrografx bought Visual Software, as the three developers of Instant 3D, Matt Staker, Jon Stirling, and Frank Wuts, appear as developers of Simply 3D, the first and third as "Lead Developer" and "Chief Scientist" respectively. A magazine article from 1997 describes it as a "stripped-down" version of Simply 3D[2], so it is possible that it was continued as a shareware version, which one website describes it as being[3].

Instant 3D had two project formats: the normal "'scene description'" format, with the extension ".i3d", which only stores references to objects added to the scene (most presumably from the built-in Instant 3D "catalog"; see Simply 3D catalog); and the "project folder" format, which has the extension ".e3d", and embeds all the resources the project uses.

Model files can be in the Simply 3D Geometry (.ged) or DXF formats.

"Instant 3D" is also apparently the name of an editor mode in the unrelated 3D modeling software SolidWorks.[4]


  • Crazy Bytes 5 (Internet Archive): Set of warez CDs with a copy of v. 1.0. (On Windows XP, appears to be able to only open files, not to save them)
  • Simply 3D (Only claims to support the project folder format)


  1. Help menu of v. 1.0, copyright text
  2. PCMania #63, p. 67., 1997? (online at, machine-translated by DeepL
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