11 Sep 2009

Away3D Lite v1.0: fastest and smallest 3d engine in Flash.

by Rob Bateman Away3D Lite v1.0: fastest and smallest 3d engine in Flash.

Filesize and framerate are generally two of the biggest concerns when using a 3d framework in Flash. Many a mail,  comment and blog has written the relative merits of one engine over another in these terms. Everyone wants more for less, faster for smaller, better for cheaper. In fact, we would go as far as saying you're quite a demanding lot! Well, there is lite (sic) at the end of the tunnel. And thankfully it isn't an oncoming train, but a brand new Away3D engine that will change the way you use 3d in Flash 10. What Away3D Lite is is the fastest and smallest fully featured 3d engine in Flash to date. Currently weighing in at under 25K, Away3D Lite can be used in projects with the most stringent bandwidth restrictions. No problem for use in banners, widgets, thumbnails... anything where filesize is a priority. But the biggest single feature offered by the new engine is it's speed. Current tests clock framerates up to 4 times faster than the standard Away3D library. And with more frames-per-second comes the potential for more polygons, more accessible content on slower machines, and more processing power left for other areas of a Flash application. Away3D Lite is not meant as a replacement for the standard Away3D libraries. Because of it's use of the native 3D features in the Flash 10 Player, Away3D Lite is Flash 10 only, so the development of Away3D 2.5 & 3.5 will continue as usual. These engines are more of a workhorse for many different purposes and with many different features, while Away3D Lite offers the choice to be fast and small at the sacrifice of features. This is not to say that you can't do anything with Away3D Lite! The list of main supported features in 1.0 includes:

  • 3DS, MD2, Collada & Metasequoia loaders
  • Bones animation
  • Viewport clipping
  • 3d mouse events
  • All standard primitive types
  • All standard camera types
  • All standard material types
  • Template classes for quick and easy setup
Plus, you will already know how to use Away3D Lite if you've used Away3D! Everything is where you'd expect, and there have only been very minor changes made to some property names, which in time will most likely percolate back through the various engines. The following demos are all available as source files from the Away3DLite examples folder in the svn, or on the downloads page, in both flex/fdt/flashdevelop and cs4 formats. MD2Cubic ExSphereSpeedTest ExMQO There is also a complete set of documentation files available from a new livedocs folder here. Finally, this release has been thoroughly checked for bugs and errors, but as always, we cannot perform miracles! If you do happen to stumble across something that shouldn't be, please let us know so that we can fix the problem. Make sure you JOIN OUR GROUP for updates! Enjoy the new release! The Away3d Team


01 Jan 1970 12:00 AM

Export your Blender objects straight to Away3D, Pa said:

[...] UPDATE: Away3D Lite 1.0 is now [...]

11 Sep 2009 06:46 AM

Stephen White said:

Congratulations on an amazing new release that redefines the Flash 3d landscape! I, for one, welcome our new tiny 3d blazing speed overlords! smile

This combination of speed, functionality and small size makes it practical to embed 3d into banners and sidebars, and also creates entire new realms of possibilities through sheer speed alone!

11 Sep 2009 07:29 AM

makc said:

that planes demo runs at 15 fps at low quality versus your 27 at high... damn I need hardware upgrade

11 Sep 2009 08:09 AM

» Away3D Lite v1.0: fastest and smallest 3d said:

[...] Check out more on the site here [...]

11 Sep 2009 10:24 AM

Swan said:

Looks amazing, great work !

11 Sep 2009 03:49 PM

Yeni Flash 3D Motoru: Away3D Lite « yagiz gu said:

[...] gore bu surum bugune kadar cikarilmis en hizli en fazla ozellikli en kucuk 3D grafik motoru. Away3D-Lite 0 [...]

11 Sep 2009 03:52 PM

Matt Bolt said:

Great work guys - I can't wait to give it a spin.

12 Sep 2009 04:32 AM

theMightyAtom said:

Genius, as usual.

Can I make one small feature request, please add a ShaderMaterial.
Then for me you'll have the perfect Flash10 3D engine and I can ditch my own efforts and get back to work :O)

12 Sep 2009 08:40 PM

Izaias said:

Pretty sweet!

13 Sep 2009 01:47 PM

Guitouxx said:

Congrats ! Great job guys smile

13 Sep 2009 04:40 PM

Away3D Lite v1.0 | News | SupaFlash – Guilla said:

[...] trouverez les sources sur leur dépôt svn avec examples et documentations. Share [...]

13 Sep 2009 06:12 PM

theMightyAtom said:

Very nice to work with.
One big plus is that you can browse through the entire class structure and see what's going in the time it takes to boil the kettle for a cup of tea.
I tried implementing and running a shader material as I couldn't do without that. I can maybe understand why you left it out as "standard", as it does affect performance at high framerates. Still works pretty sweet though :O)

14 Sep 2009 11:08 AM

Josué Palma Blog » Blog Archive » Awa said:

[...] http://away3d.com/away3d-lite-v1-0-fastest-and-smallest-3d-engine-in-flash [...]

14 Sep 2009 11:12 AM

ozgur uksal said:

this new lite engine rocks. papervision3d is my primary engine, but have lots of reasons to focus on away3d lite from now on, but won't be easy.

14 Sep 2009 12:20 PM

» Unity3D is “The Flash Killer”& said:

[...] Of course, if some 3D is needed in an integrated RIA experience, there will always be room for Away3D lite, but I know that if I want to make a virtual visit or a 3D game I will use Unity3D. Again… [...]

14 Sep 2009 10:52 PM

Vibo’s Blog — FLASH3V » Blog Arc said:

[...] ????:http://away3d.com/away3d-lite-v1-0-fastest-and-smallest-3d-engine-in-flash ??:http://away3d.googlecode.com/svn/trunk/fp10/Examples/Away3DLite/ SVN: [...]

15 Sep 2009 11:44 AM

Michael said:

GREAT WORK - I really found it easy to use and understand. And the performance is awesome. Overall (in a perfect world), I would love it if the engine supported use of as3dmod (to bend, twist etc materials), 3d text (ilike five3D, vectorvision etc.) and the ability to set width/height of materials/objects at runtime. - If they are there already, please let me know grin I might have missed them!
Also I found it a little hard to understand where to put objects (or the camera) on the z-axis to view my objects in their "real size" - in PV3D it seems easier (zoom = 10 and focus = 100)!
Thanks for another great engine grin

15 Sep 2009 02:37 PM

Sean said:

You guys are amazing!

16 Sep 2009 03:47 AM

Matt said:

Awesome Away3D Lite example: http://flashmediatuts.sourceforge.net/a3dl-terrain.html
17000 faces, 15 FPS

17 Sep 2009 11:50 AM

New lighter 3D engine | I like to blog said:

[...] released, but this one is worth a serious look. It’s a new lighter version of Awayd3D called Awayd3DLite. I have been playing a little around with this engine, and for my purpose it’s just as good [...]

19 Sep 2009 06:41 PM

Away3D | MadeByPi® Blog said:

[...] not too long ago, Away3D lite was released, a streamlined version of Away3D (25K) for Flash Player 10. Perfect for [...]

23 Sep 2009 04:20 AM

Blender exporter updated: Away3D Lite 1.0 | Rozeng said:

[...] Lite 1.0 has been released a few weeks ago. According to the Away3D team: “Away3D Lite is the fastest and smallest fully featured 3d [...]

24 Sep 2009 12:19 PM

Dave Stewart said:

Is there a problem with the demos? They all run as if they are really far away the 3D is about 20 px high) and Basic_LoadModel even crashes my standard standalone Flash player, even after re-publishing.

Any ideas?

24 Sep 2009 12:20 PM

Dave Stewart said:

Basic_LoadModel even crashes the Flash authoring environment now...

24 Sep 2009 12:25 PM

Peter Kapelyan said:

Hi Dave,

You should upgrade your copy of CS4 to 10.02, we are aware that v10.00 creates the scale bug.

25 Sep 2009 05:18 AM

Dave Stewart said:

Thanks Peter. Just so you know, the "scale bug" occurs on my machine just running the vanilla swfs downloaded from the site (even without going through CS4)

04 Oct 2009 07:27 AM

Webber said:

Away3D is not the smallest 3d engine. ND3D is only about 10kb and it's pretty fast too with great number of features.

But it's always nice to see new lite 3d engines since SWF size is very important to me.

04 Oct 2009 07:58 AM

Edan said:

These guys are writing a engine using achemy, very fast and awesome!

17 Oct 2009 01:43 PM

AS3 Quick Guides – Open Source 3D Engines &l said:

[...] a much steeper learning curve, although some of this is now being addressed by the very impressive Away3DLite [...]

06 Nov 2009 03:05 PM

My most important Twitter Messages #3 | der hess said:

[...] Away3d released a very lite version of their Flash 3D Engine. [...]

08 Nov 2009 10:54 AM

3D Planes | I like to blog said:

[...] a big fan of the open source 3D engines such as Away3D (and the smaller Lite version), Papervision etc. But it seems that for this simple 3D “effect”, the native 3D [...]

09 Nov 2009 12:39 AM

Create a 3D Flickr Photo Gallery with Flex and Awa said:

[...] popular free Flash 3D engines, and recently a smaller, faster version of Away3D was released called Away3D Lite. While Away3D Lite lacks some of the eye candy present in the more complicated 3D engines, its [...]

09 Nov 2009 08:47 PM

Create a 3D Flickr Photo Gallery with Flex and Awa said:

[...] popular free Flash 3D engines, and recently a smaller, faster version of Away3D was released called Away3D Lite. While Away3D Lite lacks some of the eye candy present in the more complicated 3D engines, its [...]

08 Dec 2009 11:00 AM

infinite turtles » Blog Archive » Fast said:

[...] in a 3D scene. Having done a fair amount of research on the topic myself while putting together Away3D Lite, I was very interested in seeing an adapted Insertion Sort method that had essentially been laid [...]

15 Jan 2010 06:16 AM

Clouds said:

I made a cube (Cube6) with Away3DLite but I couldn't set textures (BitmapMaterial) for each face of the cube (while Away3D could). How can I solve this? Please help me!

16 Jan 2010 05:14 PM

hebchop said:

Very impressive. I would love to see more parsers in the Lite versions. Especially OBJ.

17 Jan 2010 05:15 PM

Fabrice Closier said:

@clouds. Thats because its related to the way the cube6 is mapped. Its made to generate skyboxes with a single map. Same as the Vube class when map6 is being set to true. In your case use regular Cube class and set a cube data object and you will be able to set per side whatever material you wish. You should join our dev group for these questions. See adress on right side of this site.
@Hebshop. Thx, yes indeed, more parsers will come, but days have only 24 hours smile

19 Jan 2010 10:30 PM

Clouds said:

Thanks for your answer Fabrice. Anyway I couldn't join dev group some how. So I hope you could help me one more time on this: I really wish there was a Cube class for Away3DLite, will it available in the future?

22 Jan 2010 09:06 AM

Marcel Klammer said:


is there any attempt to add light and shaders within the next few month?

best regards

24 Jan 2010 11:23 AM

Emmanuel said:

When is next version coming out?

25 Jan 2010 08:15 AM

MumboJumboT — Hello. My name is Václav Van?ur said:

[...] Away3D Lite [...]

26 Jan 2010 05:23 AM

MumboJumboT: Day 1 — Hello. My name is Václav said:

[...] The application is based on a concept of a robot blabbing nonsense. Because I’ll use Away3D library, everything will be somewhat raw – boxes and angles everywhere. That should be OK for [...]

02 Feb 2010 05:23 PM

MumboJumboT: Done — Hello. My name is Václav V said:

[...] is a well known 3D library. And its new Lite flavour finally provides hardware acceleration via Flash 10 postcards in space acceleration [...]

19 Feb 2010 05:30 AM

wemakedotcoms » Blog Archive » I like said:

[...] the London Flash Designer and Developer Meetup to start, I decided to create a demo using HYPE and Away3DLite. It is nice to be able to just tinker with complex renderings using very little code and focus on [...]

19 Feb 2010 10:39 AM

The Need for Speed: FLAR Alchemy & Away3Dlite said:

[...] introduction of the Alchemy version. The only problem is, it only supports Papervision3D and no Away3Dlite. Since that’s the fastest 3d engine around at the moment, I’ve spent some time to build [...]

19 Mar 2010 10:37 AM

AS3DMod with Away3DLite said:

[...] soon as you start toying around with Away3DLite, and want to add some nice AS3DMod visuals, you’ll find out that AS3DMod doesn’t [...]

26 Apr 2010 11:27 PM

WebGL Experiment TweetTank Built with C3DL – said:

[...] might also be making a similar experiment with away3Dlite and the hype framework with flash this weekend. This has been a fun experiment to play around with. [...]

04 May 2010 10:28 PM

Away3D Lite « AS3 Game Gears said:

[...] Away3D Lite is a real time 3D engine for Flash. It uses the native 3D features in the Flash 10 Player, so Away3D Lite is Flash 10 only. Some of its features: [...]

10 May 2010 11:06 PM

Tweet Tank Away3D and Hype a virtual fish tank pop said:

[...] in the google 3d Warehouse suck. So I decided to make a fish tank because fish are cool. I used away3dlite, hype, and twitter to create this simple 3d / hype experiment. I will give you fare warning it is [...]

22 Jun 2010 09:42 AM

infinite turtles » Blog Archive » Away said:

[...] one of the first commercial projects to use Away3D Lite, Away Media teamed up with creative agency Cocomino to produce a 3D minisite in Flash for chip [...]

12 Jul 2010 10:45 PM

unbox » Blog Archive » AS3Dmod + Away3 said:

[...] 200k to your file, which might be a big cost for this simple effect. It is a better choice to use Away3DLite (if you can use Flash Player [...]

26 Sep 2010 09:46 AM

Ryan Liu | Flash ActionScript said:

[...] Away3D Lite v1.0: fastest and smallest 3d engine in Flash. [...]

27 Sep 2010 09:56 AM

SavageLook.com » Johnny Cash in Flash said:

[...] → View the source code. ? Download Source: cash.zip NOTE: You’ll need to download away3dlite, googleas3api, and AS3CoreLib to compile the [...]

10 Nov 2010 05:23 AM

Meigo said:

Mixing MD2 animations in fashion of Maya blendshapes: http://www.animal.ee/post/putting-hands-on-away3d

11 Nov 2010 09:58 AM

3d Flash Engines Umfrage - Flashforum said:

[...] [...]

21 Nov 2010 04:50 PM

jez said:

Rob !!
Absolutely beautiful developments!!
Such hard but beautiful work !
Keep going my friend !
Cymatics and Wave Mechanics, coalescent exploration mathematical, genetical. algorithmical be your your brushes !
I hope you get the time enough back from the pragmatic forces of nature and the encorporated world,
to build your sistine chapel out the knowledge you have learnt along the way !
Meanwhile it seems that out fom the 'molehill 'we have unleashed a can of alchemical superstring worms !
Amazing !
Finally we can build what we were thinking of !
Modelling reality makes reality.
Picasso, Nijinsky, even Diaghilev knew this !
And think of the Rite of Spring ! :::
A ballet that caused a riot !
This is impossible in our age .... or is it ?
Visualising things is the only beginning , but it is absolutely necessary to persuade everyone of what is possible in this highly saturated visual world.
I am waiting for the universal code translator that allows us to learn the most powerful language (potentially LISP ::wowwowowow) and just port eveything down to whateve output we want : ie actionscript.
Nicolas Carnasse ???? Hello Maestro ??
All my best and all my support !!
Meanwhile, I struggle with my triangles and tetrahedron with an eye on Haramein (skeptical though i may be!) and dream as far as i can, and build and learn to engineer what i dream. As do you. All best. I can't wait to play. But for now i am gonna splitthebrain and build in away3d and Cinder simultaneously until they merge. Here's to you, to richard and all the barbarians, to memo and to all true pirates of the new oceans.
we have never formally met because that is the way of the modern world.
But all my wishes are with you.
Imagine what can be done in the next year as things change once more !
No apologies for exuberance.
Our times demand it !

26 Nov 2010 01:43 AM

gojjyy said:

away3d lite can't use Blender 2.55 export collata file.Please fix.

01 Dec 2010 09:32 AM

SavageLook.com » JigLib Flash and Away3D said:

[...] and contributors and they are constantly working on it.  They even just recently added support for Away3dLite so you can use all that quick rendering goodness along with it.  I fully intend to follow this [...]

05 Jan 2011 05:22 AM

AIR for Android Application “Rive.be 3D Trav said:

[...] 3D Travel Log”  mobile application. It’s a very simple Flex application with using away3dlite, flashpress, wordpress and AMFPHP or ZendAMF (both are [...]

10 Jan 2011 05:41 AM

Octav said:

will this work on molehill as well ?

04 May 2011 08:34 PM


Away3D is truly a superb engine! Keep it up, guys! I'm currently developing a game framework which will use Away3D 3. It's called SWAGR - *S*uper light*W*eight *A*way3d *G*ame f*R*amework.

It will basically consist of glue code between Away3D( rendering ), JigLibFlash( physics ), Stardust( particle engine ), and ASwing( user interface ), plus some handy utilities for loading and managing game assets, user input, spatial audio, etc.

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