3D Modelling aps...

  • Axe
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Aside from the usual "big boys" (3DS Max, Maya, etc) that nobody except professionals can legally afford ;) what OpenSource/Cheap (100 bucks or less) 3D modelling applications do you all use?

I've been having a look at a few different OSS modelling applications today, and overall I've not been TOO impressed, but some show promise.

OpenFX is one that seems to be highly praised, but I found it pretty lacking personally - although I'll admit I've limited experience with 3D Modelling apps these days. The last time I played with 3D Modellers was when 3D Studio was still available for DOS :)

Aztec shows some promise, it's being completely rewritten from scratch, and what's been done so far is pretty impressive, although there are some pretty essential features missing - I'll be keeping a close eye on this one.

I got a copy of Maya 5 PLE (Personal Learning Edition) free with Unreal Tournament 2004, and it's REALLY nice, but obviously, the big huge watermark on real-time rendered previews & final renders makes it impossible for any kind of practical use (which is understandable considering the full application costs 7 grand).

I also came across an application called Wings 3D, which is as close to the features of Maya as I can find. It will do what I've been attempting to do in Maya (which is basically box-modelling a head), although it's does it in a long-winded real pain-in-the-ass way. Like I said, i can do in this what I need to do in Maya, but with the advantage of being able to render a final image, and export to a multitude of nice formats (including VRML which I think I'll have a good play with eventually), and it supports IMAGE PLANES! (something I disappointingly found lacking in both Aztec & OpenFX).

So, here's a screenshot of something I've started in Maya PLE (the PLE comes with a plugin for exporting as Unreal Tournament 2004 models, so I am going to continue and complete this model). This screenshot shows what image planes are (for those who don't know) - Btw, no, that's not me in the photo, lol.

Image

So, do any of you out there know of, or use, any other applications for this kind of 3D modelling that I won't have to remortgate the house to acquire? :)
  • suzie
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Post 3+ Months Ago

axe hi,
Have a look round this web site:
http://www.graphicsteck.ca/vb/index.php? bromyaur has a huge 3d community there, he does update everything on a regular basis, he has classes, software updates, believe me if its not at bromyaurs its not around lololol, and they are very friendly people too, much like here.
Quote:
the big huge watermark on real-time

I don't do much d/loading now due to that very reason, i don't blame them for what they do axe but they could tell us before we take these trials, one such software is xara3d!
suzie.
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Post 3+ Months Ago

ive been using lightwave3d for ages, since version 3.5 on the amiga. and i swear by it. its up to version 8 now but you could pick up a second on ebay or somewhere of an earlier version pretty cheap, maybe a couple of hundred bucks. brand new v8 is around $1600 aud.

i found it very good from an artist pov, lightwave is really easy to use and produces results that equal and better the "big boys" ;-)

just check out the portfolio http://www.newtek.com/products/lightwave/

and because its been around for so long, it has a huge community and a wealth of tutorials, models, textures, presets etc etc.
  • Axe
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Post 3+ Months Ago

The problem is, on software like this, the license is non-transferrable. Meaning that unless the copy is factory sealed, and you either still have the registration card, or it has been sent in by you, it might as well be a downloaded copy.

If somebody's bought the software, registered it, and then sold it on eBay, it's not a legal copy.

But still, I can't justify spending even $300-400 (seems to be the current going rate on eBay for LW7.5) on a piece of software like this. It's not that I can't afford it, it's just way to much money to spend on something with no real value to me beyond just to play with it.
  • DR01D
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Post 3+ Months Ago

hmmmm didnt realise the licence is non transferable, how many people do that these days?, I own heaps of apps and regestered none of them :shock:

i guess it depends on how much roi you will get from it, i originally got a "funny" version of it, then when i start using 3d elements in my projects i purchased it, has paid for itself.

you could maybe pick up an old version 4 or 5 somewhere for cheaper than that and it would probably have more features than your average open source app. I have not really checked out the open source 3d stuff, but i will have to.

ps. my avatar was done in lightwave too ;-)

not trying to sell you a copy ;-) just highly recommend it.
  • DR01D
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Post 3+ Months Ago

just remembered lightwave also has a ut2k3 object exporter ;-) complete with uv mapper, have played around a little with it. i made some prefab stuff and remapped one of the bots with a cool DR01D texture. love that game ;-)
  • Axe
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Eventually I'd like to have it return the investment that's laid out on it, but right now, my abilities in 3D Modelling apps are so almost none-existent, that it's just not worth it.

But, I do want to produce an image or two for myself along the way without the big ugly watermark.

Once I do get to the stage where I'm knowing a bit more about what I'm doing, and can actually produce some decent models, I'll look into getting a copy of Maya. After playing with the PLE, and comparing it to other apps I've played with, I realy like the general feel of it, it's very intuitive.
  • DR01D
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Post 3+ Months Ago

gotta hate that. marketing at its finest
  • peteboxshot
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Your cheapest option might be to keep an eye on the covers CD's that come with Computer Arts and other similar magazines. Smaller 3D software makers often give away a fully working copy of a previous verison of their software in the hope you'll upgrade. These early versions are fine to learn on.
  • peteboxshot
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I'll second the lightwave recommendation though. I've just bought V8. I've used maya in the past but the thing that impressed me with lightwave the full compliment of cloth/particles/voxels/dynamics etc and the quality of the renderer. It's also a lot simpler to set these things up than it is in maya. You'd need to spend another 15 thousand or so on a renderman licence to get those sort of results from maya.

The other thing to think about is using different packages for differnet things. Lightwave and maya are well supported in terms of import and exporting from other progs. Poser is good for modelling faces and characters, and 30 day unwatermaked evaluations of anything are create for rendering your project! :)

btw have a look at realviz imagemodeller. It's great for creating real looking heads.
  • .soulty
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Post 3+ Months Ago

have you had a look at blender3d?

its free and very powerful.

http://www.blender3d.org
  • Axe
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Yeah, Blender's one I have installed that I've been playing around with (in what little spare time I have)...

At the moment, work has drawn me away from playing around with 3D for a while :)
  • Vladdrac
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Post 3+ Months Ago

I share that same feeling, I wish I had the time to focus on 3d art. Everytime I get something started I am always distracted from it for more important matters.

But I promised myself to dedicate a certain amount of time for digital art. I hope I will stick with it though.
  • .soulty
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Post 3+ Months Ago

same here guys, ive been dieing to get back into some 3d work, busy with clients, personal website and basically life. lol

when work slows down then i might jump back into it. ;)
  • jserraglio
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Post 3+ Months Ago

what about SOFTIMAGE XSI EXP 3.0?

it's free and unwatermarked
  • Axe
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Post 3+ Months Ago

Oooh, I didn't know they had a free version :)

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