Recomendation for 3D modeling software

in Mac Software edited January 2014
Im looking into getting in 3D modeling, but havnt done much investigating yet. I dont have a whole lot of money to spend, i.e. not more that $100 or so(including education prices), but I would like to get a simple yet solid program. Any recomendations?

Also is Maya PLE a good place to start? Can you use the final renderings or does it place large watermarks on the image?


  • Reply 1 of 10
    jobesjobes Posts: 106member
    that's a pretty tight budget! You'd have difficulty getting into photoediting for that price, never mind 3d modelling ....

    However, you could look at Amorphium Pro, its very reasonably priced and has some good touches, although it uses a very esoteric modelling system.

    Maxon do some excellent packages based on their Cinema 4d products. I think they still sell Cinema 4D Go as a cheap entry level pack, and I seem to remember they also do VERY big educational discounts. I rate C4D as fairly easy to get into ... it is quite intuitive and comes with great documentation. C4D Go was also bundled with Final Cut a while ago, so you might be able to pick up a cheap copy on eBay or somewhere...

    You could also look at the 3d toolkit offered by dvgarage and electric image .... its $199 but is good value and is based on EI2.9, a capable program.

    Maya PLE is a good move by A/W to give people another option apart from bootlegging their software, but it is a 'limited' piece of software, is fairly hard to get into, and you can't use the final work or models for commercial output due to the model formats and watermarking.

    I should also mention Strata ... I have several mates who swear by their products, and you can download their base product for FREE!! If you save money doing that, go and buy yourself a good book on 3d .... 'the Mac 3d handbook' is a good allrounder, published by Charles River Media.

    All recommendations are tempered by my personal preference, but good luck and happy modelling!!! You can do a lot on a mac, so have fun!!
  • Reply 2 of 10
    leonisleonis Posts: 3,427member
    Strata's apps are so bug ridden

    Consider the Garage kit from DVGarage. It's around 199 dollars and comes with EI. They also offer the OSX version of it.
  • Reply 3 of 10
    airslufairsluf Posts: 1,861member
  • Reply 4 of 10
    killboykillboy Posts: 31member
  • Reply 5 of 10
    well if you want to try Maya PLE get a book for it let me warn Maya has a pretty steep learning curve but if you want to jump in also buy the Maya Visual Quick Start Guide (covers osx version 3.5 and win version 4) its a good place to start. If Maya puts you off after a while save up and get the Dvgarage 3d toolkit that comes with electric image (universe for os x) and a BUNCH of tutorials (very handy for total beginners and they show some good techniques). for 200 bucks its a good deal (considering EI used to cost like 2000$)
  • Reply 6 of 10
    I have tried Maya PLE it's pretty deep for a first timers. Does anyone have a comparison between Universe (EI) and Ligtwave? I see you can now get Lightwave for $390 now through an educational discount. I want to purchase a good 3D app that has all the features I can use when I learn to fully use it.
  • Reply 7 of 10
    leonisleonis Posts: 3,427member
    I still can't stand Lightwave's seperate modelling and animation/assembly environment philosphy
  • Reply 8 of 10
    cowerdcowerd Posts: 579member
    yeah. been trying a demo of lightwave, and C4D feels like it has a better workflow. FWIW I like the still frame rendering quality of C4D much better as well.
  • Reply 9 of 10
    as for comparing lw to ei they are pretty different ei doesnt do ray tracing however i would say that if you know what you are doing the lw renderer is very good. lw has a more akward interface (especially for mac users) but lw has always been pretty damn stable (for me atleast compared to ei)
  • Reply 10 of 10
    kedakeda Posts: 722member
    I do 3D in LW, but I have recently bought the 3D Toolkit from DVGarage.

    This is a great package for the beginner (or anyone). It contains many tutorials and has an OSX native version of the EI apps.

    Im guessing that you are more on the novice side of things. I think the 3DTk would be best for you. I can help you past some of the hurdles of 3D and gives some good insight on techinque.
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