I just played with Asymptote outputs viewed on Adobe Reader and noticed the outputs can be zoomed, rotated, filtered which objects to be viewed, etc, etc.

The following screenshot shows the features. The Asymptote output in action is this (click).

enter image description here

My question is how to get the same features for PSTricks (or TikZ) outputs? What packages do we have to load to enable such features? Or is it only possible with Asymptote?

1 Answer 1


The Asymptote feature in question is obtained by embedding a special kind of file called a prc file in the pdf file. This feature is specific to pdf files (and Adobe Reader; other pdf viewers do not support it), so a similar feature using PSTricks is probably impossible.

Using TikZ, it may be theoretically possible; but as best I understand matters, prc support would require implementing a new, 3d-only driver, as well as purely 3d commands in the PGF base layer. I'm fairly confident such a system does not currently exist, and I will be surprised if it ever materializes.

There is, however, one bright note: if you have somehow created a valid prc file, the media9 package can be used to embed it in your latex-generated pdf file. This package is, in fact, used by Asymptote.

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