The dynamic development of highly accurate optical measuring machines within the last years pushed the introduction of digitizing techniques to many applications in the fields of quality control, reverse engineering and rapid prototyping. By projecting fringe patterns onto the object's surface and recording pictures of the curvature dependant deformation of the pattern, 3D coordinates for each camera pixel are calculated on the basis of the principle of triangulation. The generation of a polygon mesh can be used for the analysis of the deviation of a die or a formed part to the initial CAD data, i.e. by means of full field or section based comparison. This paper presents the application of the above mentioned techniques on a double sheet hydroforming process. The gathered 3D data of the clam-shell part as well as of the tooling dies served for the calculation of the deviation to the respective reference geometry. With respect to the utilization of digitized tooling data within the finite element analysis, further investigations were performed on the impact of data reduction strategies. Aiming on the minimization of the necessary number of elements, representing the tooling surface in a discrete state, and on the request for a sufficient degree of accuracy, these strategies have to be considered of high priority.