Data Export

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Page Scope

Various types of files, including the tracking data, can be exported out from Motive. This page provides information on what file formats can be exported from Motive and instructions how to export them.

Tracking Data Export

Tracking data export dialogue window in Motive. CSV export is selected and corresponding options are displayed.
Make sure all rigid bodies are solve prior to export.

Once captures have been recorded into Take files and the corresponding 3D data have been reconstructed, tracking data can be exported from Motive in various file formats.

Exporting Rigidbody Tracking Data

If the recorded Take includes rigid body trackable assets, make sure all of the rigid bodies are Solved prior to exporting. The solved data will contain positions and orientations of each rigid body.

Export Settings

In the export dialog window, the frame rate, the measurement scale, and the frame range of exported data can be configured. Additional export settings are available for each export file formats. Read through below pages for details on export options for each file format:

Tracking Data Export Steps

Exporting a Single Take

Step 1. Open and select a Take to export from the Data Management pane. The selected Take must contain reconstructed 3D data.

Step 2. Under the File tab on the command bar, click File → Export Tracking Data. This can also be done by right-clicking on a selected Take from the Data Management pane and clicking Export Tracking Data from the context menu.

Step 3. On the export dialogue window, select a file format and configure the correponding export settings.

  • To export the entire frame range, set Start Frame and End Frame to Take First Frame and Take Last Frame.
  • To export a specific frame range, set Start Frame and End Frame to Start of Working Range and End of Working Range.

Step 4. Click Save.


Working Range:

The working range (also called the playback range) is both the view range and the playback range of a corresponding Take in Edit mode. Only within the working frame range, recorded tracking data will be played back and shown on the graphs. This range can also be used to output a specific frame ranges when exporting tracking data from Motive.

The working range can be set from the following places:

  • In the navigation bar of the Graph View pane, you can drag the handles on the scrubber to set the working range.
  • You can also use the navigation controls on the Graph View pane to zoom in or zoom out on the frame ranges to set the working range. See: Graph View pane page.
  • Start and end frames of a working range can also be set from the Control Deck when in the Edit mode.
Working range (826 ~ 3962) shown on the navigation bar at the bottom of the Graph View pane.

Exporting Multiple Takes

Step 1. Under the Data Management pane, shift + select all the Takes that you wish to export.

Step 2. Right-click on the selected Takes and click Export Tracking Data from the context menu.

Step 3. An export dialogue window will show up for batch exporting tracking data.

Step 4. Select the desired output format and configure the corresponding export settings.

Step 5. Select frame ranges to export under the Start Frame and the End Frame settings. You can either export entire frame ranges or specified frame ranges on all of the Takes. When exporting specific ranges, desired working ranges must be set for each respective Takes.

  • To export entire frame ranges, set Start Frame and End Frame to Take First Frame and Take Last Frame.
  • To export specific frame ranges, set Start Frame and End Frame to Start of Working Range and End of Working Range.

Step 6. Click Save.


Motive Batch Processor:

Exporting multiple Take files with specific options can also be done through a Motive Batch Processor script. For example, refer to FBXExporterScript.cs script found in MotiveBatchProcessor folder.

File Formats

Motive exports reconstructed 3D tracking data in various file formats and exported files can be imported into other pipelines to further utilize capture data. Available export formats include CSV, C3D, FBX, BVH, and TRC. Depending on which options are enabled, exported data may include reconstructed marker data, 6 Degree of Freedom (6 DoF) rigid body data, or skeleton data. The following chart shows what data types are available in different export formats:

Tracking Data Type CSV C3D FBX BVH TRC
Reconstructed 3D Marker Data
6 Degree of Freedom Rigid Body Data
Skeleton Data


  • CSV and C3D exports are supported in both Motive:Tracker and Motive:Body licenses. FBX, BVH, and TRC exports are only supported in Motive:Body

Camera Calibration Export

A calibration definition of a selected take can be exported from the Export Camera Calibration under the File tab. Exported calibration (CAL) files contain camera positions and orientations in 3D space, and they can be imported in different sessions to quickly load the calibration as long as the camera setup is maintained.

Read more about calibration files under the Calibration page.

CalibrationExport 20.png

Export Assets Definition

Assets can be exported into Motive-compatible rigid body (TRA) and skeleton (SKL) definition files. These files record marker arrangements calibrated in each asset, and they are used to import the asset into different takes without creating a new one in Motive. Note that these files specifically store the spatial relationship of each marker, and therefore, only the identical marker arrangements will be recognized and defined with the imported asset.

Rigid body definitions are exported as TRA files from the Export Rigid Body option under the File tab. When there are multiple rigid bodies in a Take, individual definitions can be exported by selecting a rigid body and clicking the Export Rigid Body from the context menu in the Assets pane. Likewise, skeleton definitions are exported as SKL files from the Export Skeleton option under the File tab, and individual definitions are exported through the Export Skeleton option located in the context menu from the Assets pane.


TIP: Rigid body and Skeleton definitions can also be quickly copied into different takes by dragging and dropping selected assets into a Take from the Data Management pane.

Analog Data Export

Recorded NI-DAQ analog channel data can be exported into C3D and CSV files along with the mocap tracking data. You can just follow the normal the tracking data export steps, and if the analog data exists in the TAK, they will also be exported.

C3D Export: Both mocap data and the analog data will be exported onto a same C3D file. Please note that all of the analog data within the exported C3D files will be logged at the same sampling frequency. If any of the devices are captured at different rates, Motive will automatically resample all of the analog devices to match the sampling rate of the fastest device. More on C3D files:

CSV Export: When exporting tracking data into CSV, additional CSV files will be exported for each of the NI-DAQ devices in a Take. Each of the exported CSV files will contain basic properties and settings at its header, including device information and sample counts. The voltage amplitude of each analog channel will be listed. Also, mocap frame rate to device sampling ratio is included since analog data is usually sampled at higher sampling rates.


Note that the coordinate system used in Motive (y-up right-handed) may be different from the convention used in the biomechanics analysis software.

Common Biomechanics Convention

C3D export setting for applications using z-up right-handed coordinate systems.

Since Motive uses a different coordinate system than the system used in common biomechanics applications, it is necessary to modify the coordinate axis to a compatible convention in the C3D exporter settings. For biomechanics applications using z-up right-handed convention (e.g. Visual3D), the following changes must be made under the custom axis.

  • X axis in Motive should be configured to positive X
  • Y axis in Motive should be configured to negative Z
  • Z axis in Motive should be configured to positive Y.

This will convert the coordinate axis of the exported data so that the x-axis represents the anteroposterior axis (left/right), the y-axis represents the mediolateral axis (front/back), and the z-axis represents the longitudinal axis (up/down).

Reference Video Export

Export video dialog window.

When there is a reference camera in a Take, the recorded reference video can be exported into an AVI file. The Export Video dialog window is located under the File tab. At the bottom of the export dialog, the frame rate of the exported AVI file can be set to full frame rate or a down-sampled half or quarter ratio frame rate. You can also adjust the playback speed to export a video with slower or faster playback speed.

Read more about recording reference videos in Data Recording page.


Media Player: The exported videos may not be playable on Windows Media Player, please use more robust media player (e.g. VLC) to play the exported video files.

Audio Export

When a recorded capture contains audio data, an audio file can be exported through the Export Audio option that appears when right-clicking on a Take from the Data Management pane.

Export Skeleton Marker Labels

Skeletal marker labels for skeleton assets can be exported as XML files (example shown below) from the Data Management pane. The XML files can be imported again to use the stored marker labels when creating new skeletons.

For more information on Skeleton XML files, read through the Skeleton Tracking page.

Exporting skeleton marker XML template.

Sample Skeleton Label XML File

 <Asset version="1.0">
    <MarkerNames ReorderMarkers="true">
        <Marker name="NewHeadTop" oldName="HeadTop" />
        <Marker name="NewHeadFront" oldName="HeadFront" />
        <Marker name="NewHeadSide" oldName="HeadSide" />
        <Marker name="RToeIn" oldName="RToeIn" />
        <Marker name="RToeTip" oldName="RToeTip" />
        <Marker name="RToeOut" oldName="RToeOut" />
        <Marker name="WaistLFront" color="75 225 255" movable="false" />
        <Marker name="WaistRFront" color="225 75 255" movable="false" />
        <Marker name="WaistLBack" color="75 225 255" movable="false" />
        <Marker name="RToeIn" color="225 75 255" movable="false" />
        <Marker name="RToeOut" color="75 75 255" movable="false" />
        <Marker name="RHeel" color="225 75 255" movable="false" />
        <Marker name="RToeTip" color="0 150 0" movable="false" />
        <MarkerStick origin="WaistLFront" end="WaistLBack" color="140 45 225" />
        <MarkerStick origin="WaistLFront" end="LThigh" color="110 210 240" />
        <MarkerStick origin="WaistRFront" end="WaistRBack" color="140 45 225" />
        <MarkerStick origin="RToeTip" end="RToeIn" color="60 210 60" />
        <MarkerStick origin="LToeTip" end="LToeOut" color="110 210 240" />
        <MarkerStick origin="RToeTip" end="RToeOut" color="60 210 60" />

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