Extract a normal or displacement map

  1. Select Maps > Extract Texture Maps > New Operation.

    The Extract Texture Maps window appears. For a complete description of all of the extraction properties see Extract Texture Maps window.

  2. Select Normal Map, Displacement Map, or both in the Maps to Generate list.
  3. Specify the low resolution target model by selecting it within the 3D View, then click Add Selected.

    The target model name appears in the Target Model list.


    If the default base mesh for the target model (subdivision level = 0) is not the subdivision level you want the map produced for, you can specify a different subdivision level for the target model by selecting it from the level drop-down list located to the right of the target model name.

  4. Specify the high resolution source model(s) you want to sample by selecting it in the 3D View, then click Add Selected.

    The source model name(s) appears in the Source Models list. If an incorrect item appears in the list, select the item and click Remove.


    Ensure you select the subdivision level you want the map produced from using the level drop-down list next to the source model name.

  5. Set the Normal Map Extraction options that you want. For example:
  6. Click the folder icon beside Base File Name to open the Save As options. In the Save As options, do the following:
    • Enter a file name.

      This name is used as a prefix for the file name of each texture output.

    • Select an appropriate file format from the Save as type drop-down menu (which also specifies the Bits per Channel for the output texture(s).
    • Click Save.

      For more information, see Image bit depth and texture extraction.

  7. To preview how the map appears on your target model, ensure that the Preview As Normal Map or Preview as Bump Map setting is turned on.

    Previewing an extracted normal map on your low resolution model lets you determine whether or not the normal map extraction is correct before exporting it to another 3D application.

  8. Click Extract to begin the texture map extraction.

    A progress indicator appears during the extraction process.

    NoteMudbox supports the extraction of displacement maps on models with UVs that exist outside the 0 to 1 range. Each UV tile is extracted as a separate image file and saved to the extracted files directory. These files use the naming convention: <filename>_u1_v1_g1.tiff where the U and V flags indicate the UV tile coordinates, and g indicates the gain value for displacement.

If the texture extraction process fails to produce a map, or the map produced doesn’t meet your expectations, see Troubleshoot texture extraction.


Remember to set the subdivision level appropriately so the normal map preview accurately reflects how it will appear when applied. Failing to do so will cause the model to appear with both the high resolution sculpting and the normal map effects which may not be desirable. For example, you can apply the normal map to the base level of the target model so it represents the sculpting on higher subdivision levels. Another workflow may require that the model be subdivided once or twice before sculpting and require the normal map to be applied at a subdivision level other than the base level.

Related topics

Texture extraction overview

Normal maps overview

Displacement maps overview

Image bit depth and texture extraction

Extract Texture Maps properties

Troubleshoot texture extraction