One Pagers

These one pagers will help you get started with Cetopo.


Cetopo 101




Here are some brief tutorials about Cetopo. They should give you an idea of what Cetopo is capable of. Enable fullscreen or watch them on YouTube for ideal viewing experience! These videos have sound.


Getting started (3 minutes!)

About Cetopo


We think that experts should not have to spend time doing menial manual work due to outdated or incompatible dataformats. Experts should do what they do best, like design buildings if they are Architects, but currently many hours are wasted on conversions and workarounds. That is why Cetopo aims to provide you the data that you want, in the format that you prefer. If this means the latest BIM compatible 3D-landscapes, then that is what we provide, but if you prefer to stay 2D, then you will find that our support for those is just as good as for 3D.


Cetopo is constantly being developed to better server your workflows, many of our features are quite recent, and developed at request from our customers. For example:

  • 3D-buildings: 2020
  • 3D-roads: 2020
  • Helsinki Terrain: 2020
  • 3D-forests: 2020
  • Orthophoto textures: 2021
  • Tree Categories: 2021
  • Sweden: 2021
  • Revit Plugin: 2021
  • Denmark: 2023
  • UK: 2023

So if you have some Cetopo-feature in mind that you think would be usefull, then please don't hesitate to contact us with it! Cetopo currently covers Finland, Sweden, Denmark, the Netherlands, and the most of the United Kingdom, but we intend to expand wherever the necessary condition, great data, is met.

Max Cedercreutz

+358 40 481 0114
Founder, Dev

Tuomas Hyytiä

+358 40 832 6484
Co-Founder, Sales

Frequently asked questions & Tips

General questions

Cetopo aims to support as many workflows as possible, and this includes your favourite software. We currently provide the following file formats:

  • dxf (most CAD software)
  • 3dm (Rhino)
  • skp (SketchUp)
  • dae/glb/obj/stl/ply (3D Meshes)
  • csv/txt/xyz (terrain points)
  • svg (vector images)
  • png/jpg/gif/bmp/tiff (orthophotos)

Additionally we have plugins for ArchiCAD and Revit, which provide native data types and a streamlined workflow for those apps. Please contact us if there is a file format that would improve your workflow significantly, and we will see what we can do.

We do not currently provide "raw data" in GIS-formats such as ShapeFile, GeoJson, KML, LAZ, etc.. but we would be very interested in hearing your use case for these formats.

Yes! Cetopo provides thoroughly configurable 2D CAD files in addition to more modern 3D models. Or you can mix and match 2D / 3D in the same file.

Cetopo uses multiple sources for its data. Sign in to view detailed information about the country/feature you are interested in.
The accuracy of the various features provided by Cetopo vary between countries. Sign in to view detailed information about the country/feature you are interested in.

Using Cetopo

  • Compress the terrain. Use the terrain compression settings to reduce terrain detail. If your model contains a lot of "background" regions, then we suggest you make an inner selection and use the Inner/Outer compression settings to achieve a multi-accuracy model. The terrain compression algorithm is smart, so there is almost no advantage in disabling compression completely. If you are downloading contours terrain (ArchiCAD), then switching to points terrain will make the model lighter and more accurate. Contour based terrains can be compressed just like triangulated terrains in Cetopo. Special contour compression settings can also be used. Most importantly the "Reduce" and "Skip Smaller" settings. Also make sure that the "Smooth" setting is set to zero.
  • Compress the orthophoto. The orthophoto can get extremely large, especially in Sweden/Denmark. Use the Texture resolution setting to limit the orthophoto resolution. Note that this setting is followed only aproximately by Cetopo to avoid unnecessary quality loss.
  • Download separate inner/outer models. Try downloading the most important regions as one model, and then the exterior environment as a second model.
  • Download data types as separate models. To find out which data type is making the model heavy, try downloading each data type separately. Now you will have a buildings file, a roads file, etc.
  • Use simpler data styles. Try changing the buildings, roads, and forests data style to something simpler.
  • Disable features. Forests can get extremely heavy for very large (several km²) models. Try disabling them entirely to see if that helps.
  • Download a smaller area. If the model is still too heavy then perhaps the area is simply too large.

Your model might be unrealistically detailed for such a large area. In these situations we recommend that you start from very low-detail (that computes succesfully) and work your way towards acceptable detail, or failure, to figure out the maximum detail that the Cetopo servers can handle for your area. If the achieved detail is too low for your needs, then please contact us so we can see if it would be possible to perform a custom computation of your model.

For a list of possible steps, check out the "The model is too heavy, how to make it lighter" box.

The coordinate systems used by Cetopo (and the National Land Surveys of various countries) have the feature that the Y-axis is not north aligned. The selections you make in our map interface are however often compass aligned, which means that they will appear rotated by a few degrees when downloaded. This rotation will vary depending on the selected coordinate system.

If the model appears rotated compared to some other model from another source (for example from a municipality), then make sure that the coordinate systems match. The default coordinate system that Cetopo provides is the national coordinate system, but municipalities tend to use local coordinate systems. All standard coordinate systems in use are available from Cetopo. Please contact us if you think some Coordinate System is missing.

The Coordinate System used is usually one of the "local" coordinate systems in your country, for example SWEREF99 NN nn in Sweden (where NN and nn are numbers), or ETRS-GKN (where N is a number) in Finland. They are all optimized for a specific geographic area, and this information is used by Cetopo when offering its recommendations to you. Which one you should use is in the end the coordinate system used in the project you are working on, and that is usually defined by the municipality in which the project takes place. Unfortunately we do not have this information. To see an overview of the geographic extents of the different coordinate systems, please try the "Grid" views by selecting your coordinate system in the panel on the right in the map view.