phototiler logophototiler

A photorealistic map renderer and 3D map model exporter.

🙋‍♀️ FAQ

What is phototiler?

phototiler (short for photorealistic tiler) is a lightweight native application that can render and export 3D maps. It accepts various mapping data sources such as vector tiles and GeoJSON. The data can be filtered and customized for your needs. The scope of phototiler is very focused: rendering highly accurate maps with advanced lighting conditions and exporting 3D models for ingestion in your own software or renderer.

Can I use phototiler for free?

Phototiler is available for non-commercial and evaluation purposes. If you are interested in using Phototiler for commercial purposes, you can get a commercial license by purchasing a license key.

Phototiler evaluation has no time limit. If the evaluation demo is all you need feel free to use forever :)

What makes phototiler different from any Blender GIS plugins?

Phototiler is dedicated to maps, which means it doesn't have a whole lot of features that get in the way of what you need when making 3D maps.

Generally, it is intended to have a low cognitive-load and was designed to not make you feel overwhelmed by the amount of user interface and buttons you might not need. Someone who knows very little about maps should be able to create a 3D map in Phototiler without too much effort.

What phototiler isn't?

phototiler isn't an advanced GIS software such as qgis due to its very focused scope. It is not a real-time and general-purpose map renderer such as mapbox-gl, Google Maps or Apple Maps. Also, it is not a typical 3D modeling tool, but facilitates interoperability with such software by exporting in a widely used format: GLTF, which allows you to import mapping data in well-known engines such as Unreal Engine, Unity, Cinema4D or Blender.

Where does the data come from?

The default data is provided by nextzen. It contains some data from OpenStreetMap. OpenStreetMap is a collaboratively edited data source available under the share-alike Open Database License. You are free to use the data processed and rendered in phototiler for commercial and personal purposes, as long as you provide credit to the OpenStreetMap license. Here is a suggested attribution:

Processing by Phototiler, Tiles by Nextzen w/data from OpenStreetMap and Who's On First.

What are the system requirements?

You will need a computer with an internet connection, a graphics card and sufficient memory to support the processing and rendering of 3D maps. A recommended configuration is the following:

Does Phototiler download 3D models from Google Maps?

No, the 3D data is generated on the fly from a predefined list of data sources such as Mapbox or Nextzen. Phototiler downloads vector tiles, customizes given a user-defined style, and the data can then be exported as a 3D GLTF file or rendered and saved as a PNG.

Can I use my own data sources?

Custom data sources is under development and will be available in future versions of phototiler.

Can I display map labels?

Not yet, map labels could be added as a layer in other softwares such as Photoshop. They will be added in future versions of phototiler.