CAD Overlay - PIX4Dcloud Advanced


The Overlay tool allows the user to easily import and overlay design plans and maps on 2D orthomosaics in PIX4Dcloud Advanced. With the Overlay tool, the as-built can be quickly compared with the as-designed to easily check progress and identify as-built errors.

  • The CAD Overlay feature is only available on PIX4Dcloud Advanced.
  • The CAD Overlay feature is only available for datasets assigned to a site. More information on how to assign a dataset to a site here.
  • The CAD Overlay feature supports PDF (georeferenced or not), JPEG, JPG and PNG files.
  • Multiple CAD files can be uploaded and overlaid in a single project.

How to use the CAD Overlay tool

1. On the left panel, in correspondence with the Overlays layer, click add.png.
2. The wizard Import overlay opens. To upload a file either select Upload file and browse to the file or drag and drop the file.

Note: Ensure the file has a PDF (georeferenced or not), JPEG, JPG or PNG format and a high resolution for smooth display and zooming.

3. (Optional) If required, the uploaded file can be replaced by selecting Replace file.
4. A preview of the file is displayed.
5. Click Next to continue.
6. Define two points of reference on your plan, placing the blue and red markers on the image by drag-and-drop. To place markers more precisely or check the markers' placement:

  • Zoom in by scrolling the mouse scroll wheel forwards.
  • Zoom out by scrolling the mouse scroll wheel backward.
  • Pan by holding down the mouse left button.

7. Once the two markers are identified, select Next to align the uploaded file on the 2D map.
8. Align the imported Overlay by dragging the two markers to the same points of reference on the 2D orthomosaic. Match red to red and blue to blue.
Alternatively, manually edit the coordinates of the markers adjusting their values in the Markers coordinates.

  • Markers coordinates should be defined in the project's output coordinate system.
  • If a georeferenced PDF is uploaded, the coordinates are automatically placed in, using the coordinates of the PDF.
  • Hit Reset to go back to the coordinates of the markers loaded by default.

9. Once each marker is in the correct position, select Complete to finalize the Overlay process and to return to the project page.


10. The imported Overlay appears on the left panel, within the Overlays layer. It may take a few minutes to process.

  • To enable large image upload without altering the user navigation, PIX4Dcloud Advanced generates tiles from the uploaded file. This may imply that processing can take a few minutes, depending on the size of the file.
  • A processing icon will be displayed during the tiling process.

11. (Optional) Existing Overlays can be re-positioned or replaced by clicking edit.png next to them on the left panel.

Important: Once the Overlay is added to a dataset within a Site, it will be shared with all datasets within the same Site. If the position of an Overlay is edited, it will be edited on all datasets within the Site. If an Overlay is deleted, it will be deleted on all datasets within the Site.

12. (Optional) The Overlay name can be changed, descriptions and tags can be added to the layer and its opacity adjusted. These changes won't be reflected in the other datasets of the Site.
13. (Optional) Multiple Overlays can be added to the same Site. To do so, repeat from step 1.

Note: If multiple files are uploaded, they can be reordered by drag-and-drop.
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  • Patrick de Jourdan

    Hi, The video does not play on this page -

    CAD Overlay on Pix4Dcloud Advanced

  • Gyula Sólyom

    Can you provide more info on the limitations of georeferenced pdfs? Linear size, number of layers, area, file size?

  • Holden (Pix4D)

    Hi Gyula. These limtations would be more related to the file format ittself rather than Pix4D specifically. Here are some sources that discuss this georeferencedPDF

  • Gyula Sólyom

    Thanks! We have some experience with importing geoJSON and it works up until a few lines, but if we have a more complex file it just simply does not show up in pix4dcloud. So this is not will be the case with geopdf, if we are able to generate the pdf, it will appear?

  • Holden (Pix4D)

    It should appear yes. 

  • Mike Gowan

    Is there a way to create an output file that includes both the superimposed overlay and the underlying orthomosaic map?  I used the screen capture function, but the information on the overlay is a little blurry when I zoom in.  Also, can the color of the overlay lines be changed?  



  • Holden (Pix4D)

    Hi Mike. Currently, there is no high res export feature that will combine these layers. Feel free to leave this as a feature suggestion on the page linked HERE

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