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Which 3D Modeling software?


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#1 Gilderoot   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 27 December 1999 - 03:47 PM

Anybody know what software is best for making 3D models that port to directX? Anybody try Amorphium? It's new; I was wondering if its any good. Is there any good shareware or freeware modelers out there.. or what's the best (and affordable) commercial one to get?

Thanks,
-Dan


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#2 Anonymous Poster_Anonymous Poster_*   Guests   -  Reputation:

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Posted 09 November 1999 - 10:09 AM

Yo, ok. I learned this about 2 years ago. There are many 3D modelling programs, as you were mentioning before. Most game artists prefer to use 3D Studio Max. The lastest version is 3. It is quite expensive but you can make professional looking models in it.

I am into programming and 3d modelling and when I talk to professional 3d modellers they all think 3d Studio Max is a shitty modeller. I personally think it's easy and really good, I've been using it for 2 years.

The main reason it is rated so low by many pros is because it's bones, which are a structure of bones that can control objects, is really shit, but there are 100s of plugins some very expensive, some free that make up for these problems.

Here are all the 3d modelling programs I can think of:

3d Studio Max 1.2 / 2.5 / 3.0
RayDream Studio
Truespace
LightWave
Maya (Which is suppose to be one of tha best on tha market and tha most hardest to use and one of tha most expensive, mainly for character animation)
PowerAnimator
SoftImage
POVRay(Freeware, and it's a raycaster, but it uses a C-based language for modelling, I personally think it's stupid)

I know RayDream Studio is cheap in cost.

These are ratings of tha modellers from what I hear from tha pros.

1. Maya
2. PowerAnimator
3. Truespace or 3D Studio Max or Lightwave
4. RayDream Studio
I'm not sure about SoftImage

But in tha end it's up to you, you gotta go around to all tha modelling sites you can find and check out tha models and go to the actually modeling sites.

I really like 3D Studio Max, which I'm sticking to right now.

3D Studio Max - www.ktx.com
Truespace - www.caligari.com

You could find the other sites for all the other modellers pretty easy.

Oh ya, some modellers like Maya and PowerAnimator only work on special workstations. PowerAnimator I think needs an SGI workstation and I think Maya needs a NT Workstation.

RESEARCH!!!

Later man,

email - datisme@notme.com

Da_KiD


#3 digisoap   Members   -  Reputation: 241

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Posted 09 November 1999 - 12:22 PM

The modeler I recommend is trueSpace; it's what I use on a daily basis, and unlike 3DSMAX or LW, the interface is very easy to learn, and not in the least cumbersome. It may take a bit of time getting used to the icons the menus use (no text - though the name of the tool shows up when you mouseover the icon). tS also uses right-clicking extensively for all tools, allowing you numerical access for all applicable tools and advanced features for some. The .cob format is also very "chunky," meaning the data is extremely well organized, and the full format support is not needed to load the file into a game engine, something programmers tend to like, especially if parts of the file are not needed in/by the game engine. I'm working on a few games right now that use the .cob format, and the programmer (same for all) seems to love dealing with it, as compared to .3DS. If you HAVE to use another format, there is full support included out of the box for .3ds, both binary and ascii, and a number of other formats. tS can import all formats it can export to, and also imports wavefront .obj format, a very, very nice format to use as a step between programs.

-Nick http://www.digital-soapbox.com


#4 Niels   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 09 November 1999 - 10:17 PM

When did 3DS MAX get a difficult UI? Just wondering, since I find it the most intuitive UI of any piece of software I've ever worked with - especially considering the complexity of the product (And I have tried a few: 3DS, Imagine, RayDream, TrueSpace)

/Niels


#5 firahs   GDNet+   -  Reputation: 288

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Posted 10 November 1999 - 10:49 AM

i think 3ds has a beautiful UI, ive found truspaces UI to be clumbsy and not well thought out (like windows :P)

#6 Anonymous Poster_Anonymous Poster_*   Guests   -  Reputation:

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Posted 10 November 1999 - 11:54 AM

Lightwave has an excellent modeler. I have never heard it described as difficult to learn before. It has a very intuitive interface and allows for modelling of organic shapes very easily using things like metanurbs. Things like aircraft/tanks/boats are all very easy to build. Humans are slightly more challenging, but still within grasp. check out:
http://www.newtek.com

#7 digisoap   Members   -  Reputation: 241

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Posted 11 November 1999 - 08:54 AM

My comments about 3D apps are based on personal experience and comments I've heard from others; while some people (it seems) like the 3DSMAX interface, I never really found that I could into the app as easily as trueSpace or Alias, which in my opinion the easiest 3D app to learn. Out of every single application I've used, I find that LW has THE worst interface ever imagined. Maybe it's because I'm not an old Amiga user like most of the power uses, but I'd think the idea of a GUI is to go PAST text buttons, else we'd all still be using 3DSr4 under DOS.

-Nick http://www.digital-soapbox.com



#8 evaclear   Members   -  Reputation: 162

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Posted 11 November 1999 - 10:30 PM

I suppose the answer to this question could be summed up like this: Call the companies, and ask for Demos. (they should send a perspective customer a demo). Play around with it, see if YOU like it. Then decide which one was more to your liking. Personaly I like Lightwave & Truespace more than 3d Studio Max, due to Max's non-intuitive (to me) User Interface. But that was fixed with Max 3. So just go try them and make up your own mind don't let other people tell you one is better than another because 90% of the time it B.S. they are all good programs you just need to find one that you'll beable to learn fairly quickly and find intuitive.

#9 Anonymous Poster_Anonymous Poster_*   Guests   -  Reputation:

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Posted 14 November 1999 - 01:24 PM

Exactly. Despite the different features and pricelevels of all these softwares it all comes down to you, the artist. Just find a tool that you´re comfortable with, whether it be a "low-end" like Ray Dream Studio or "high-end" like Maya. I´ve seen great stuff come out of these "cheaper" programs, so you shouldn´t be too hindered by small lacks in advanced features. As I said, just make sure that you will like the program, find it relatively easy to use, and that it has got the features you need, exporting options etc.

#10 Anonymous Poster_Anonymous Poster_*   Guests   -  Reputation:

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Posted 18 November 1999 - 07:33 PM

No one has mentioned Bryce 4. Not good for figures but for textures, structures and landscapes it is unbeatable. Or what about poser 4? The UI's are good. As a newbie I reserve the right to be ignorant and underinformed.

#11 evaclear   Members   -  Reputation: 162

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Posted 22 November 1999 - 01:36 PM

I like bryce, for terrain rendering it can't be beat. And although I've never used poser it looks to be good at what it does, creates characters. But I've always been disapointed with MetaCreations lack of exporters. And the fact that poser does high poly models makes it useless for most 3d games.

I've heard great things about animation master 99...and I love truespace, Lightwave isn't that bad either (to me). But as I said before see if you can get a demo of the products before you buy something & are completely disapointed & left with an expensive coaster and table leg fixer....


#12 digisoap   Members   -  Reputation: 241

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Posted 24 November 1999 - 10:17 AM

For terrain rendering, I'm a big fan of Terragen. Much more realistic than bryce, and tends to render much faster as well. Best of all, since it's in beta, it's free. Check it out and d/l a copy at http://www.planetside.co.uk.

-Nick http://www.digital-soapbox.com


#13 zircher   Members   -  Reputation: 123

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Posted 30 November 1999 - 06:39 PM

If you're wanting to model mecha, spaceships, and other such critters, check out DoGA CGA. It has X format export and it's a freebie. [http://www.doga.co.jp]

In defense of POV Ray, it is a ray tracer. Use a program like Moray if you want to model for POV Ray. Doom is a ray caster, completely different technology.
--
TAZ


#14 derangedgames   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 13 December 1999 - 11:02 AM

I have tried almost every product listed above and I consider Lightwave to be the best one for its money. It is very easy to learn and recently 6.0 has UV mapping. With Messiah it makes animation very similar to SoftImage. Lightwave was not my first program so I am not as biased as the others.
There are many 3D paint programs that you can use with this produce.

Amorphium, is basically a lower verison of Electric Image. It is produce by PLAY. I have never used it. I not sure if I would even bother.

I hope it helps,

Tim



#15 Nomad   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 23 December 1999 - 03:59 PM

well, I like both 3dsmax and lw, i heard both MAYA, and softimage are GREAT, but they are way out of my proce range, so i will be forgetting them for now.

and as for the coment about POVRAY and ray tracing and ray casting being completely different technologies, that is not, true, ray casting is closely related to ray tracing, however it is much faster at the sake of quality. While raytracing works by casting rays from the light sources and finding how it bounces in the seen and then returning the value as a color for the image, ray casting is basically backwards ray tracing ( shooting a ray from the screen, to the nearest intersecting poly and computing the color value) with a bounce limil of 0. Ray casting is much simplier and gives much lower quality results than ray tracing (obviously, doom(or more fairly GLDoom) to production quality CG)but it is also much faster (many fps (anywhere from 10 to 100 or greater)while Ray tracing is much slower (could take minutes or hours for 1 frame based on scene complexity ( can reach 3 to 4 fps on super computers, but realistically who has those). anyway

My 2cents,
Nomad


#16 arrogantgod   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 23 December 1999 - 06:39 PM

I have been a professional animator/modeler for 8 years and have used everything from VideoScape3D(Amiga) to SoftImage Extreme 3.5 (NT).

I recommend 3D-Studio MAX 3.1 hands down. There is nothing better for the price....period.


#17 digisoap   Members   -  Reputation: 241

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Posted 27 December 1999 - 03:47 PM

I'd have to disagree about MAX being the hands down winner. WHile version 3 has a much "prettier" interface and is extrememly customizable, it still has a CAD-like feel which many artists may have a hard time grasping. I'm not putting the program down, I've seen some amazing things down with it, but at the same time I've seen amazing things done with POV-Ray. It's all based upon the users preference, and mine happens to be trueSpace, which seems to be slowly gaining more respect as a modeler and animation program, though it still lacks some features which would aid in animation, but all of which will be resolved with tS5, which should be on the market in a few months. I'm a bit more in the know when it comes to trueSpace, and I can say with some authority that it will be turning some very big heads in the coming months as a viable alternative to the much more expensive MAX.

-Nick Robalik http://www.digital-soapbox.com


#18 Infidel   Members   -  Reputation: 122

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Posted 09 January 2000 - 11:37 AM

Blender is a freeware modeller, though I don''t think it export to the X format. I personally found it very difficult to use, but I know some people that swear by it, so you might as well try. Very small download (around 4mb), has lots of high-end features. I personally use Carrara, by metacreations, which is sort of a follow up of Ray Dream. Not very good for character creation, since it doesn''t support bones. Other than that, the program is relatively cheap, and Carrara''s new renderer is among the best in terms of speed and quality. It is also, IMHO, extremely easy to learn. It also has an SDK that is very easy to use, so you could write an exporter to another format. You might be able to pick up Ray Dream for cheap now at surplus auction, and there is an x file exporter plug-in available for free.

Brian P. Retford
Lost Horizon Software

#19 Mathias   Members   -  Reputation: 126

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Posted 10 January 2000 - 08:32 AM

I would agree with all theese above and would like to add the modeller RHINO 3D (i think i got i right)...

I supports NURBS....




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