Isolation Levels

9 votes
Date Updated: 
Author Name: 
Andreas Meissner

Create nested isolations, go back and forth between them. Hope it helps.

Additional Info: 


  • close all open 3ds Max instances
  • remove old versions of this script
  • copy scriptfile "" into 3ds Max startup folder (example: "C:\Program Files\Autodesk\3ds Max 2012\Scripts\Startup")
  • copy imagefiles "IsoLevels1_16i.bmp, ..." into 3ds Max usericons folder (example: "C:\Users\Username\AppData\Local\Autodesk\3dsMax\2012 - 64bit\enu\UI\usericons")
  • start 3ds Max and open menu Customize > Customize User Interface > Toolbars (Category: # Scripts)
  • create a new toolbar and drag and drop the commands "Isolation Levels - Backward, ... Forward, ... New Iso, ... Exit Iso" to it
  • restart 3ds Max, enjoy


  • works as fast as the standard isolate
  • number of isolations: infinite
  • unlike the standard Isolation Mode, this script hides Xrefs while rendering in isolation
  • hint: I find it very useful to put this script on the Alt+Q button and replace the old isolation function of 3ds max
  • you can find the current isolation level in the title of the 3ds Max window, behind the scenename

script at work (old user interface, script has no extra window anymore):

to do:

  • isolation state should be stored in maxfile
Version Requirement: 
tested with 3ds Max 2012
isolation_levels_12.ms9.07 KB
isolation_levels_23.zip3.55 KB


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milie's picture


Hidden objects now stay hidden, good work and thanks again :)

real08121985's picture

I tried to fix bugs and get

I tried to fix bugs and get rid of some points on the todo-list with the version 8. Hope it works, I didnt had the time to test it yet. Now it shouldnt unhide all objects when the dialog is closed and it should always stay on top. Thanks to barigazy for the code!

milie's picture

I agree with Herr Bert, the

I agree with Herr Bert, the fact that it unhides objects hidden before running the script is tricky, especially if you work on someone else's max file and you don't know what was visible or not.

barigazy's picture


Suggestions for 1st and 3rd "to do"
#1 With .net form U can stay Always "On the Top" :)

	if ::form != undefined do try(form.close())catch()
	local btn1, btn2, btn3
 	fn maxHW = (dotNetObject "maxCustomControls.win32HandleWrapper" (dotNetObject "System.IntPtr" (windows.getMaxHWND())))
	fn defBtn btn form x: w: txt: = 
		btn.bounds = dotNetObject "system.drawing.rectangle" x 0 w 40
		btn.FlatStyle = btn.FlatStyle.System ; btn.text = txt
		btn.Margin = dotNetObject "padding" 0 0 0 0
		form.Controls.add btn
 	form = dotNetObject "form" ; form.text = "IsoLevel: 0/0"
	form.AutoSizeMode = form.AutoSizeMode.GrowAndShrink
 	form.ShowInTaskbar = off ; form.autosize = form.TopMost = on
 	form.FormBorderStyle = form.FormBorderStyle.FixedToolWindow
 	form.StartPosition = form.StartPosition.Manual
	form.DesktopLocation = dotNetObject "System.Drawing.Point" 50 110
	btn1 = dotNetObject "button" ; defBtn btn1 form x:0 w:40 txt:"<--"
	btn2 = dotNetObject "button" ; defBtn btn2 form x:40 w:80 txt:"New Iso"
	btn3 = dotNetObject "button" ; defBtn btn3 form x:120 w:40 txt:"-->" ; ok

#3 Why not use CA to store last state of the scene and then add CA to "rootnode"


real08121985's picture

I know what you mean, I gotta

I know what you mean, I gotta fix that.

Herr Bert's picture

Keep initially hidden objects hidden

This is a really great tool! Thank you!

However there is bug that makes it almost useless to me:
On closing the tool or going up to the highest level IL unhides ALL objects, even if they were hidden before using the tool.

milie's picture


Is there any way to memorize the isolations when saving a max file? If i save the max with objects isolated, i have to manually unhide them when reopening the scene.

I think you could use selection sets, with custom names, that the script recognizes. That if no one else uses selection sets, i know i don't :D

Anyway, cool script. Maybe Autodesk will should consider this as a standard option for Isolate

real08121985's picture

This script really helps me

This script really helps me so often right now so I thought I would share the latest version with you guys, as I constantly keep debuging it while using it in daily work. Some bugs are fixed and it seems pretty stable. Things I wanna add in the future are now added on todo list in description.

Also I think it works even faster than the standard isolate function of 3ds max, maybe you can share your feedback about this. Have fun guys.

real08121985's picture

Please redownload version 4,

Please redownload version 4, I recognized another bug and fixed it.

ivailora4kov's picture

Problem with 3Ds MAX Design 2013 - fixed

Everything works now as it should in version 04. Thanks.

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