Open point cloud(s)

Modified on Tue, 23 Jan 2024 at 07:07 PM

When opening point clouds for the first time, NUBIGON generates a highly efficient data structure (octree) and completes processing tasks for better visual quality and performance. This only needs to be done once. In subsequent instances, you’ll be able to open the octree instantaneously regardless of data volume.


Step 1: Pick dataset from File > Open Point Cloud(s)

To open point clouds, press File > Open Point Cloud(s) and choose point cloud file(s).

NUBIGON currently supports E57LAS, LAZ, XYZ, TXT, PTS, RCS, and RCP files.  

When opening XYZ, TXT, and PTS files, you will first be prompted to verify the channels in the ASCII file dialogue. If necessary, make adjustments and press OK. 

Step 2: Configure Octree Generation Settings

Next, you will be prompted with the following Octree Generation Settings:

Octree name

(optional) You can change the name of the octree file.

Offset type

NUBIGON utilizes a local coordinate system for efficient GPU use but always preserves the original coordinates of your data. The dropdown menu Offset type provides three options: Origin, Reference, and User.

  • If your data has large coordinates, offset to the Origin to avoid display artifacts.
  • To apply the offset vector of another point cloud, choose Reference and select the relevant point cloud. The default of this parameter is the Last point cloud you opened, but from the dropdown, you can choose any other octree already open in the scene. 


  • Read intensity: If selected, the intensity values of the point cloud will be preserved.
  • Compute normals: Select this option for enhanced visual quality and precision.
  • Smoothness: This parameter controls the roughness of the generated model. Higher values produce more smooth models.
  • Remove duplicates: If selected, duplicate points are automatically removed.
  • Force 8-bit colors: In certain cases, 3rd party software packages will export LAS files with 8-bit colors instead of 16-bit (as outlined in the LAS specs), resulting in colorless octrees. In these cases, re-generate the octree by enabling this option.  

Step 3: Explore Object Inspector

Once the octree generation is complete, it will be displayed in the viewport and listed in the Object List. 

Toggle  to hide/show the octree in the viewport.

Select the octree to view and edit its transform, object, and material attributes. 

Transform Attributes

You can change the object's translation, rotation, and scaling parameters in the Transform Attributes. Any transformation of the octree using manipulators will also be automatically reflected in this section. 

Object Attributes

Expand the Object Attributes to list the following:

  • Number of points included in the octree
  • Availability of normal vectors: These are either calculated during the octree generation process (see above) or read from 3rd-party sources
  • Availability of intensity values: If the original point cloud contains intensity values and the user has enabled Read intensity in the advanced settings, they will be available in the octree.
  • Offset vector: This is the offset applied during octree generation. Correctly opened point clouds from the same site and coordinate system should have the same offset vector. 

Material Attributes

You can view, edit, and re-assign materials to point clouds/octrees from the Material Attributes.

Learn more about point cloud/octree display modes. 


Any remaining questions? Check out our FAQ on opening point clouds.