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Old Oct 5, 2006, 07:09 AM   #1
arkitect
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What does Apple use for its 3D Design?

Just being curious (as I am wont to be…)

Does anyone here know what 3D software Apple's designers use?

After the markers/pencils and yellow trace what comes next?

I am sure it might be something hugely expensive — but maybe not. And do they use Windows software somewhere in the process…

Any ideas or conjectures?

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Old Oct 5, 2006, 07:18 AM   #2
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Afaik apple doesn't create all that much 3D graphics by themselves - whatever there actualyl is (commercials? / other stuff) might not be developed in house.
The applications which apple creates which relies on 3D graphics in some form or function is probably developed in house, woulodn't put it past em to use macs, seeing as the heavy parts of 3D (atleast to me) is number crunching, which can be handled with processing farms.

I'm also guessing that if they develop something which relies on 3D graphics it'll b the same system as pixar is using, if my memory serves me correctly they use mac / linux.
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 07:24 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mufflon
Afaik apple doesn't create all that much 3D graphics by themselves - whatever there actualyl is (commercials? / other stuff) might not be developed in house.

I'm also guessing that if they develop something which relies on 3D graphics it'll b the same system as pixar is using, if my memory serves me correctly they use mac / linux.
Thanks for the reply.

Although I was more wondering about the actual 3D Design of their products (Industrial design — the behind the scenes stuff we never get to see but would LOVE to!).
What do they use to design and render 3D proto-types and mockups? Some huge Catia based system? Rhino 3D etc (PC only).

The 3D graphics (animation) I am sure they can do very well with only Mac OS products.

But when it gets to 3D Industrial design it is a very different matter.

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Old Oct 5, 2006, 08:36 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arkitect
Thanks for the reply.

Although I was more wondering about the actual 3D Design of their products (Industrial design — the behind the scenes stuff we never get to see but would LOVE to!).
What do they use to design and render 3D proto-types and mockups? Some huge Catia based system? Rhino 3D etc (PC only).

The 3D graphics (animation) I am sure they can do very well with only Mac OS products.

But when it gets to 3D Industrial design it is a very different matter.

You're referring to CAD not 3D design. I'm sure they use what everybody else uses, something like AutoCAD.
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 09:07 AM   #5
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"I'm also guessing that if they develop something which relies on 3D graphics it'll b the same system as pixar is using, if my memory serves me correctly they use mac / linux."

afraid they use pcs too lol, but i did here a rumor once that jobs was developing the pixard inhouse system (stemmed from maya) to a commercial mac app, that would be very nice (as long as it wasnt an ilife app, a proper pro one!)
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 09:11 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by abrooks
You're referring to CAD not 3D design. I'm sure they use what everybody else uses, something like AutoCAD.
Last time I checked, AutoCAD is not available for Mac OS (only Windows). Anyone else know differently?
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 09:13 AM   #7
arkitect
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Originally Posted by abrooks
You're referring to CAD not 3D design. I'm sure they use what everybody else uses, something like AutoCAD.

Thanks for being so pedantic. CAD / 3D design work — whatever you like to call it.

Although as a long time user of AutoCAD, I don't think AutoCAD is going to be much help. Mind you, it could explain why Apple seems to be going through a 70's/80's Volvo phase. Remember when Volvos were designed with nothing but straight edges?

Now maybe something like an Ashlar Vellum product could be useful…
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 12:32 PM   #8
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well I know Apple has TBWA/Chiat/Day whose in charge of their ads and that company has 3d department soo maybe they do that all stuff. I dont think Apple has big art department since that Ad agency is pretty big
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 12:46 PM   #9
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Pixar uses its own proprietary 3D app called Marionette and they render using Renderman, another app created at Pixar. Since Apple passed on Maya two times I have to believe that they have plans to make Marionette a commercial app in the future. There have been job postings at Pixar in the past that suggest they are working on some big commercial app.


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Old Oct 5, 2006, 06:02 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by ATD
Pixar uses its own proprietary 3D app called Marionette and they render using Renderman, another app created at Pixar. Since Apple passed on Maya two times I have to believe that they have plans to make Marionette a commercial app in the future. There have been job postings at Pixar in the past that suggest they are working on some big commercial app.


that was some seriosly cool info actually, so when was it developed?
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 06:53 PM   #11
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A current Apple job listing for the Mac group asks for Pro/Engineer and NX (Unigraphics).

http://hotjobs.yahoo.com/jobs/CA/Cup...ture/JPGLL83PS
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 07:37 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by mufflon
that was some seriosly cool info actually, so when was it developed?

Renderman has been around since 89 and I'm not sure about Marionette, maybe since the first Pixar films.

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Old Oct 5, 2006, 07:54 PM   #13
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I know someone who works for the industrial design department... he uses Pro/Engineer.
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 07:59 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATD
Pixar uses its own proprietary 3D app called Marionette and they render using Renderman, another app created at Pixar. Since Apple passed on Maya two times I have to believe that they have plans to make Marionette a commercial app in the future. There have been job postings at Pixar in the past that suggest they are working on some big commercial app.

Marionette and RenderMan are add ons to Maya, you need Maya to run these two applications.

Marionette is for rigging and basically for charater animation while RenderMan is just for render a high quality image with Global Illumination, Ray treaced lights/shadows, motion blur, etc plus it has a very complex shading and motion language (Python Script if my memory is right) which you can customise the hell out of.

Heaps of production companies out there use RenderMan because it's pretty fast (as renders go) and fairly straight forward to use.
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Old Oct 5, 2006, 09:11 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by ezekielrage_99
Marionette and RenderMan are add ons to Maya, you need Maya to run these two applications.

Marionette is for rigging and basically for charater animation while RenderMan is just for render a high quality image with Global Illumination, Ray treaced lights/shadows, motion blur, etc plus it has a very complex shading and motion language (Python Script if my memory is right) which you can customise the hell out of.

Heaps of production companies out there use RenderMan because it's pretty fast (as renders go) and fairly straight forward to use.

I have heard that Renderman is a bit slow but the reason it's used by so many production companies is that it's the highest quality renderer on the market followed by mental ray. I have been thinking about getting the Renderman for Maya version but I understand it's a single cpu renderer. I have mental ray plugged into 6 cpus so it's hard to let that go in favor of a single cpu renderer. I do hear that Renderman for Maya straight forward to use. Maybe the later versions will open up to more horsepower.

As far as Marionette I'll take your word for it. I have always wondered why Apple passed on Maya with Renderman and Shake under the hood. Those 3 apps together make a very powerful package.

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Old Oct 6, 2006, 11:53 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATD
I have heard that Renderman is a bit slow but the reason it's used by so many production companies is that it's the highest quality renderer on the market followed by mental ray. I have been thinking about getting the Renderman for Maya version but I understand it's a single cpu renderer. I have mental ray plugged into 6 cpus so it's hard to let that go in favor of a single cpu renderer. I do hear that Renderman for Maya straight forward to use. Maybe the later versions will open up to more horsepower.

As far as Marionette I'll take your word for it. I have always wondered why Apple passed on Maya with Renderman and Shake under the hood. Those 3 apps together make a very powerful package.
Speedwise Renderman is as faster than Mental Ray Image, RenderMan is designed for single-proccessor unix systems and while RenderMan Pro Server is just for multi-proccessor rendering/renderfarms using unix (preferably IRIX), Mental Ray can't compete. Mental Ray was intially designed and developed for 3D Studio MAX on Windows NT systems.

Pixar has limited RenderMan to 1 CPU rendering so you have to get RenderMan Pro Server if you actually want anything rendered in a decent time frame.

The quailty of the output of RenderMan to Mental Ray is huge, but you get what you pay for. Hence why any good studio renders everything with RenderMan.

I have also wondered why Apple passes on Maya, because Apple has excellent support for OpenGL and Maya works well with an OpenGL environment, as for Maya with DirectX the less said the better. I'm hoping for a 3D Studio MAX port to Mac OSX by the end of the year, that would be sweet.
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Old Oct 6, 2006, 01:37 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by ezekielrage_99
I'm hoping for a 3D Studio MAX port to Mac OSX by the end of the year, that would be sweet.

Some people think that Max and Maya will be merged down the line. Are you using any 3D app/renderer?

BTW, I just got a demo for Maxwell, do you know much about it?



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Old Oct 6, 2006, 02:20 PM   #18
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BTW, I just got a demo for Maxwell, do you know much about it?

I would say that maxwell render is 2nd to renderman. With mental ray coming third in terms of quality of output.

iMeowbot is right. ProEngineer and unigraphics (Catia, IDEAS) are what you use if you want to get things accuratly made. ie a parametric modelling program

studio max, c4d, rhino etc are rarely used for manufacturable models, as they are based on different modeling principles. (artistic)
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Old Oct 6, 2006, 02:29 PM   #19
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I would say that maxwell render is 2nd to renderman. With mental ray coming third in terms of quality of output.

iMeowbot is right. ProEngineer and unigraphics (Catia, IDEAS) are what you use if you want to get things accuratly made. ie a parametric modelling program

studio max, c4d, rhino etc are rarely used for manufacturable models, as they are based on different modeling principles. (artistic)

I would think that the models are made in programs like ProEngineer for manufacturable models then pulled into Max, Maya or C4D for rendering stills or animation. I have used that type of workflow with products before.

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Old Oct 7, 2006, 08:43 AM   #20
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I would think that the models are made in programs like ProEngineer for manufacturable models then pulled into Max, Maya or C4D for rendering stills or animation. I have used that type of workflow with products before.
I agree.

so in answer to the original poster, there is no way in hell that macs are designed and manufactured using only macs. - kind of ironic.

another reason why the product design departments doors are firmly shut.
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Old Oct 9, 2006, 09:05 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by ATD
Some people think that Max and Maya will be merged down the line. Are you using any 3D app/renderer?

BTW, I just got a demo for Maxwell, do you know much about it?

Sorry I don't know much about Maxwell, I've basically used RenderMan and Mental Ray Image for work.

There are two lines of thoughts with Maya and 3D MAX merger, the fact that they are both now produced by Autodesk is the BIG conspiracey factor behind both these programs becoming one. The other train of thought is no because Maya is for high end while 3D MAX has sercured a huge foothold in games and tv. Many production companies wouldn't want the Maya and 3D MAX becoming one, nerves I guess. Plus there's the feature, interface and scripting which can be very different for both Maya and 3D MAX, it kind of like what Motion is to Shake.

Personally I am saying no for Maya and 3D MAX becoming one however I do think will see a Mac OSX version of 3D Studio MAX by the end of 2007.
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Old Oct 15, 2006, 11:46 AM   #22
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Pro Engineer

I have been a Pro Engineer user for more than 10 years, its an awesome package, I can see why apple uses it to design their fantastic hardware, now I do find it funny that Pro Engineer runs and is certified on every OS except Apple... it runs on Unix, Linux and of course Windows... I guess OS X being a BSD cored OS maybe a guy could get it to work... I'll have to hunt down one of the unix CD's and see what I can break...

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Old Oct 23, 2006, 03:32 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddekker
I have been a Pro Engineer user for more than 10 years, its an awesome package, I can see why apple uses it to design their fantastic hardware, now I do find it funny that Pro Engineer runs and is certified on every OS except Apple... it runs on Unix, Linux and of course Windows... I guess OS X being a BSD cored OS maybe a guy could get it to work... I'll have to hunt down one of the unix CD's and see what I can break...

DD
My main business is machining, my education is MechEngr, and I have a Flex3C bundle (Pro/Engineer Wildfire plus a suite of modules and a bunch of the other options that I am learning). Some folks at mcadcentral are running Wildfire under Parallels (XP) with excellent results. I'll probably do the same next year when dual quad core Xeons arrive. People are running SolidWorks, and probably SolidEdge and UGS NX as well.

Pro/Concept is PTC's only OSX native app, and it is for Industrial Design with links to Pro/Engineer.
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Old Oct 24, 2006, 08:44 PM   #24
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My main business is machining, my education is MechEngr, and I have a Flex3C bundle (Pro/Engineer Wildfire plus a suite of modules and a bunch of the other options that I am learning). Some folks at mcadcentral are running Wildfire under Parallels (XP) with excellent results. I'll probably do the same next year when dual quad core Xeons arrive. People are running SolidWorks, and probably SolidEdge and UGS NX as well.

Pro/Concept is PTC's only OSX native app, and it is for Industrial Design with links to Pro/Engineer.

doing simple modeling on parralells might be okay, but some of the advanced assembly or complex surfacing that I do I need every bit of horsepower I can get not to mention FEA, maybe bootcamp would be an okay way to go providing the video drivers are stable enough (not blaming Apple one bit... PTC programs are funky about drivers and hardware) the multi processor won't help you with most PTC products, this is supposed to be corrected in Wildefire 3... then again most of my customers won't switch to wildfire 3 for a couple years yet.. what all parts of Pro E are you taking on?

DD
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Old Oct 24, 2006, 09:27 PM   #25
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doing simple modeling on parralells might be okay, but some of the advanced assembly or complex surfacing that I do I need every bit of horsepower I can get not to mention FEA, maybe bootcamp would be an okay way to go providing the video drivers are stable enough (not blaming Apple one bit... PTC programs are funky about drivers and hardware) the multi processor won't help you with most PTC products, this is supposed to be corrected in Wildefire 3... then again most of my customers won't switch to wildfire 3 for a couple years yet.. what all parts of Pro E are you taking on?

DD
I think that only Mechanica currently utilizes multiple threads, though I imagine that will change for WF4. I'm assuming that you are at WF 2?

I have pretty much acquired the whole WF3 suite (Flex3C, Advanced Structural and Thermal Simulation, Tool Design Option, Complete Machine Shop, EFX) though my proficiency is quite modest at this time. I'm almost to the point that I want to back off on my machining business, and immerse myself in the whole Pro/E workflow for a year or so, with an eye on plastic part design and analysis all the way through mold machining, plus mechatronics capability and all the fab that goes with that.

NX may be as capable, but PTC seems to have most of the capabilities that I can imagine I would need. Whether I will ever be proficient at all of them is questionable, but, I suppose that when I need a capability, I can sit down and learn it.

BTW, the maintenance is killing me...
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