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counterfeitbacon
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Vancouver, WA
Insane since: Apr 2002

posted posted 11-12-2002 06:15

OK, I'm thinking about getting into 3d modeling a bit, and wanted to know some...umm...expert opinions on which software to go with.

Slime
Lunatic (VI) Mad Scientist

From: Massachusetts, USA
Insane since: Mar 2000

posted posted 11-12-2002 06:35

POV-Ray! =)

Lightwave, I'm sure, is way out of your price range. (I believe the educational (cheap) version is about $1,500 or something like that...)

Dan
Paranoid (IV) Mad Scientist

From: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Insane since: Apr 2000

posted posted 11-12-2002 06:55

Max = $3,495
Lightwave = $1,595

For retail versions.
Educational versions are much cheaper for both of them.

Slime
Lunatic (VI) Mad Scientist

From: Massachusetts, USA
Insane since: Mar 2000

posted posted 11-12-2002 07:08

Oh, OK. I must have confused the educational price with the full price.

Still, I think it's something like $800 or so.

I had no idea 3DSMax was that expensive!

counterfeitbacon
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Vancouver, WA
Insane since: Apr 2002

posted posted 11-12-2002 07:53

Ya, It is...

OK: Here's the situation:

3D Modelling has always intrigued me, and it is something that I think I want to pursue, but, money is an issue, as it is with many other development tools. So, I figure, that if I can somehow get my hands on a copy to work with, and to learn (the school has LW v3, not 7).

Ok, please don't flame me for saying this, but I have to for the above statement, I downloaded 3dsMAX v4 a while ago, thinking that I wanted to pursue that, but it was convoluted and unorganized and after about two months of using it, figured out that, although powerfull, it lacked functionality. Lightwave 7, which I can get, by several means, seems to be more organized, and I do not know about its power or functionality.

My reasioning for download (pirating, whatever you call it) is this: I might as well learn on a pirated version, because, when I get enough money, it is definatly something that I would want to buy, for example: Photoshop, I have $125 saved up, and I'm heading towards around $700 to actually buy it, since it IS something that I want to pursue, but, why not learn it on a fully functional version? Just don't use it for commercial use?

Ok: Aside from that, If price isn't an option, which one would you go with, and I hope you can see why I posted that now, since I'm looking at which one has the most functionality, power and ease of use. (Not a Bryce or Cinema 4d ease of use, but an organized ease of use, BTW: My school has both of those, but I can't stand Bryce or C4D)

tomeaglescz
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Czech Republic via Bristol UK
Insane since: Feb 2002

posted posted 11-12-2002 09:54

OK CFB, First off kill the d/load discussion

next, back on topic...

OK, 3DS Max is a very powerful tool, nad has an exceptionally large following. It has become the industry standard for 3d work at a professional level. It has many plugins etc for sfx.

Like everything it is a difficult tool to master, but compared say to maya its easy.

A lot of people do thier modelling outside of max (say in Rhino) then import into max, for post production etc.

Untill ya really dig into max you dont see the cool package it really is, Lightwave for example is basically two separate packages.

1.Lightwave
2.modeller.

you create ya 3d models in modeller, then bring them into lightwave for rendering etc.

Max on the other hand is all in one, renderer modeller combined. Now also it has a very powerful editing tool for video (animations produced in it).
You can add post production effects and titles etc at the time of rendering aswell as say music. Adobe plugins can also be used in this interface.

Max has gone a long way to streamlining its workflow and when you get the hang of it, you begin to appreciate that.

Now to Lightwave.

Its been around since the time of the commodore amiga, in various incarnations, i have been using it ince version 4 just after it ported over to the PC. A serious amount of television 3D stuff has been produced in lightwave, for example all of the babylon 5 series space scenes, star trek and others to mention aswell. It's renderer is probably the best out there without resorting to plugins. Modelling is quite intuitive, but as i have pointed out here it is a separate package (included) unlike max, where you have everything under one interface. I love Lightwave, But i also love max.

Each has its own strengths and weaknesses, along with those who love and hate each package. Now as far as cost goes, unfortunately you have chosen two of the most popular professional level 3d packages, maya and rhino following not far behind. Along side of that is the price that goes with it. They are professional tools, and therefore carry a professional price tag.

As for choice of which one, I am lucky i have both, (legal versions too!!!). I have worked with maya 4, and rhino...a few others aswell. But i use each one daily and love them both. If push came to shove and i was forced to make a choice i would go with max, based on its all in one functionality, its wide base of plugins, the video post tool and last but not least Character Studio, its own built in character generator...

Whichever ya choose if ya need a hand or tips holler, there are enough of us lurking down here in the basement to help, we dont get many visitors, so expect to be tied to a chair....

if ya not sure on anything else drop me an email.

good ,luck tom


Skaarjj
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: :morF
Insane since: May 2000

posted posted 11-12-2002 10:11

Concoluted interface you say? dunno what you were looking at...it's quite easily arranged, create, edit, render. You create your primitives under create, you add modifiers and change them in edit, you add mateirals and render them out in render.

SInce you're just starting CFB, I really would suggest one of the free programs, like blender or pov-ray. They give you more of a feel for the way 3D works, and more of an idea of the hard-slog it is to get things looking great.

Koan 63, written on the wall of cell number 250:
Those who Believe
Can
Those who Try
Do
Those who Love
Live

counterfeitbacon
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Vancouver, WA
Insane since: Apr 2002

posted posted 11-12-2002 14:39

Thanks Tom and Skaarj!

I have been using 3d programs (Bryce4, RayDream 3d) that my school had (Highschool = RD3d, Middle School = b4) for about 4 years, and have done some not so serious modelling, just to clear that up. I like RayDream more than Bryce, but it is missing some crucial features.

I also looked at Rhino, but I don't like the idea of purely having to work with nurbs.

I think that I might try lightwave, since It would be the easier one to buy, and It's powerfull enough. Anyways: I can always "step up." Right?

tomeaglescz
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Czech Republic via Bristol UK
Insane since: Feb 2002

posted posted 11-12-2002 16:14

CFB there is always the good news that most 3d software companies will let you buy the upgrade version if ya are coming from a competitors software, check out lightwave and max web sites,


and ya welcome like i said just pop down when ever ya have a question


tom

counterfeitbacon
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Vancouver, WA
Insane since: Apr 2002

posted posted 11-13-2002 00:35

Thanks again! I think that I'm going to go with learning Lightwave for now, since it seems a little bit more streamlined than 3dsmax and sacrifices little power in return.

Dan
Paranoid (IV) Mad Scientist

From: Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Insane since: Apr 2000

posted posted 11-13-2002 00:40

Lightwave is a little weaker in polygon tools, but it makes up for it with rendering/animation tools. Its biggest disadvantages are having to use two seperate programs, a modeller, and a renderer, and not having a modifyer stack (In lightwave you arn't able to make changes to your model at an earlier stage, without undoing everything you've done after that stage).

Also, if you own one of the packages lightwave competes with, if you decide to swicth to lightwave later, it'll only cost you $995 (If they still offer this deal).


tomeaglescz, as I recall, Maya is actually leading 3d Studio Max in useage, (Softimage is also up there) and Lightwave is a ways behind, and I don't think Rhino is even close.

Luxo_Jr
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: Stuck inside a Pixar short film
Insane since: Apr 2001

posted posted 11-13-2002 07:56

Personally I say Maya and Softimage XSI

"You don't know how paralysing that is, that stare of a blank canvas, which says to the painter: you can't do a thing." - Vincent Van Gogh

Skaarjj
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: :morF
Insane since: May 2000

posted posted 11-13-2002 10:19

Quite obviously forgetting that this thread is from a beginner, and a high school student with little too no money...how's he supposed ot get a $10,000 program (legally that is)?

tomeaglescz
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Czech Republic via Bristol UK
Insane since: Feb 2002

posted posted 11-13-2002 12:58

Dan....

It depends on who's figures you actually read

Maya admittedly has picked up some more customers since the release of version 4, and with the drastic price reduction aswell.

Softimage is on the up, but is still a pain in the ass to work with, but slowly getting better.

as for Rhino, my comments were that quite a lot of people model in it, it is a very user friendly package to use.

and as for lightwave being a weak tool for modelling...pop over to renderosity and look at some of the images over there that were modelled in lightwave, and look at the tutorials i posted in that lightwave car thread of mine.



Ruski
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From:
Insane since: Jul 2002

posted posted 11-13-2002 18:54

COOOOOOOOLL!!!
Now I get it..... ....Muahahahahah!

Das
Maniac (V) Inmate

From: Houston(ish) Texas
Insane since: Jul 2000

posted posted 11-13-2002 23:14

The 'big boy' apps have traditional roles:
A

counterfeitbacon
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: Vancouver, WA
Insane since: Apr 2002

posted posted 11-13-2002 23:48

I'm not really a beggenner at this:

I took two classes in modeling at school, but didn't realize that one was Bryce5 and the other was Rhino.

I got fairly good with Rhino and Bryce5, but didn't like Rhino for some reason. When I started using LW4 at school, I thought that it was a lot better than both programs.

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