Apple Product Designs

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by technominds, Oct 16, 2008.

  1. technominds macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2008
    I am a young graphic designer, based in the UK and I have set up a small blog which I post my Apple Product idea's on. These designs have so far been accurate to premeditate Apple's next move, but i'd love feedback on what you think of my designs and also if you have any ideas for new products for me to render!

    The address is:


    I hope you enjoy my graphic and product work, and check back as I work on products very regularly =]

    - TM:eek:
  2. motoxpress macrumors 6502

    Mar 8, 2006
    Looks like your having a good time with C4D. Cheers!

  3. LeviG macrumors 65816

    Nov 6, 2006
    Norfolk, UK
    I've corrected the post a little :rolleyes:

    Also your laptop design was debunked by most blogs nearly as soon as it hit the net.

    In my opinion from what I've seen on that site, theres not much of a chance that you'll hit what apple would release designwise without the rumours. Your product designs don't even take into account 'minor' issues like fitting all the component parts into said products, theres a reason the iPod touch is as thick as it is and it isn't just the battery :rolleyes:

    The black plastic has to much reflectance on the iPhone render and the macbook pro looks to be using the old technique of manufacture and has a button on the touchpad, the silver is also too polished, apple are anodised and this gives a different finish along with a fine texture. Look at the finer details of your work.
  4. technominds thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2008
    Wow, yea its only a bit of fun! I'm just trying to get a little better at product design thats all :/

    For your information, I HAVE been ahead of Apple with design moves, in fact I posted the design for the iPhone almost A YEAR in advance to its release date, almost identical design except the home button. My MacBook designs were not so spot on, I thought maybe a glossy back would be nice.. and to be honest I think my design is nice than what they came out with on the 14th!

    As I say, its more for me to improve on my design skills, OF COURSE I can't predict exactly what Apple are going to do.. but that isn't going to stop me trying to design products!

    In other news:
    I just posted a new design for Mac mini and a new wireless keyboard, as well as a render of the new cinema display.
  5. LeviG macrumors 65816

    Nov 6, 2006
    Norfolk, UK
    but what you're doing isn't product design, at best its industrial design.

    If you say so.

    funny that doesn't say you designed it first :eek:

    I prefer the apple one and thats not perfect, gloss black is a scratch magnet, anodised aluminium is the style of the pro line and apple is heading in the 'pro' style direction.

    Then go and learn a bit about the parts that go into said designs, your designs are not going to happen mainly due to the fact you haven't taken into account whats going inside most of them.

    Well the keyboards a kind of obvious one to go for as is the black top on the mini (assuming they keep the same style), its just when it will be released by apple, they took ages with the last keyboard change.

    The mac mini isn't going to happen as it wouldn't all fit, its too shallow.

    Personally I would say the mac mini (assuming not discontinued) is going to a pure slab of aluminium, slightly larger proportions (same as the time machine) and maybe slightly lower in height, probably 75% of the original at the most, allowing for improved manufacturing processes etc.

    Apple have invested heavily in this new 'brick' process and they're most likely going to milk it.
  6. fluidedge macrumors 65816


    Nov 1, 2007
    harsh comments.

    I thought it was more an exercise in c4d - which has turned out really well. Nicely lit scenes (some could do with a bit more light!) and well modelled objects.

    Good luck to you.
  7. technominds thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2008
    The website has only been online for a small while, the iPhone design (Originally I intended the design to be for the iPod) was published on YouTube, in 2007 as a 'video leak'. You can find it on there under my name.

    The recreation was to test my C4D skills only.

    I studied graphic and product design, and INITIAL design ideas are not made to consider parts particularly, of course you couldn't make a product the size of a thumbnail to hold a car; but a designer is often there to think ahead of technology.

    As for the Mac mini; Apple would be silly to discontinue them.. a small update could make them a big choice for budget buyers. If you had looked a little closer, I actually increased the width and depth of the item in order to reduce its height.. My bet is if Apple can fit double the components into their MacBook then they could easily fit the technology inside a device of that size... but as I say its subjective and only for design purpose.

    I really don't think I deserve the grilling you've given me for my post, its hardly a nice welcome to this forum.
  8. technominds thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2008
    Much appreciated, and nice to see someone else can see the undeserving severity of the previous comments!
  9. fluidedge macrumors 65816


    Nov 1, 2007
    don't worry this guy is known for being well up his own bottom

    what would an iPhone Nano look like and what would the consumer Mac Pro be like in your world... ;)
  10. technominds thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2008
    I'm actually working on the Mac Pro as we speak =D
    I did a nano when first getting to grips with C4D (and therefore it is terrible) so i'l do another soon.
    I'm pretty convinced they need a new nano with multitouch!
  11. LeviG macrumors 65816

    Nov 6, 2006
    Norfolk, UK
    I looked and its not much different to the full screen ipod designs from 2006, although admittedly you have added the coverflow into the video (but that wasn't around in 2006 iirc)

    yes you have to think ahead of the technology but theres a limit to what current tech can do, especially when you are doing designs for products which would be released within the next year or two. You also need to consider the tech when doing a design (even at the initial stages), as proposing a product which would need significant alterations to be produced wouldn't exactly be very good to the client.

    you can only reduce the height so much by doing this, the hard drive and optical drive will still take up a fair amount of space, especially while the optical drive is centred. It looks about 25mm high (rough estimate from keyboard) which is half the height of the current one(50mm), if it was 35-40mm it might be more believable, especially considering a far 'cooler' running apple tv is 28mm high.

    but they haven't, they've removed aspects of it, theres no firewire and theres one less chipset, the height has been reduced by using led display and a different manufacturing process which requires less internal strengthening :confused: or are you referencing in relation to the mini, in which case, yes theres no battery but the design of the mini is already pretty much packed in as tightly as they can get it already.

    But this isn't a grilling, you wanted feedback on it, and I was going by what is posted on said site and the fact that you said your designs were 'so far been accurate to premeditate Apple's next move' which implies you 'inspired' (or at the very least were 99% accurate) apples latest products.
    You also have to take into account that normally a first post isn't just linking to a blog - they're usually spam to up the traffic to the posters sites.

    Really, thats a new one on me, designers are critical creatures, especially in their own fields (product design and cad modelling/rendering - yes I do it for a living), I never expect any product designer to hold back criticism purely to be nice, especially when feedback is being asked for - I say it as I see it. I could have been a lot harsher over the renderings but due to knowing that there are some limits to c4d in comparison to 3ds max I didn't mention them.

    Technominds - if you want more feedback on the cad renderings (ignoring the differences in opinion over designs) then say so and I will say more about it because if you were to do some relatively minor alterations (assuming c4d can do it) it would improve the overall quality of the renderings.
  12. technominds thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2008
    Fair enough, I do appreciate the feedback and now understand your reasons.

    This would be most appreciated, I do believe C4D can do just as much.. if not more than 3ds. I'm admittedly new to 3D.. lighting and texturing seems to be a small challenge.
  13. LeviG macrumors 65816

    Nov 6, 2006
    Norfolk, UK
    ok this is what I would do to just tweak your images - I'll do them in order from the mac mini at the top and I may refer to things slightly different due to 3ds terms.

    1) - its a little dark, as said, increase light output, maybe look into the fall off distance of the light, normal light reduces the further from the origin. Maybe play around with light positions, you seem to have a hot spot on the monitor foot.
    - add a shadow (there doesn't look to be one), if its like 3ds max theres probably a tick box in the light properties to enable this (raytrace is best but long render times)
    - add a subtle noise texture to the metal (if not there, I can kind of see it on the screen but the image is a bit small to confirm), as I've said Apples anodised metal has slight texture to it. Look at some of the close up macbook pro images to get a feel for the amount.
    - Use a 50mm lens on the camera (you can set different lenses in 3ds max), closest to the 'eye' viewpoint, your perspective is a little off, I'd say you used a 35mm lens for the image.

    2) - black gloss, bit too glossy in my opinion (its the same with default in 3ds max) so try to knock it down a touch, maybe reduce the amount of 'mirror' reflection given to it. The highlight also looks reddish (again same in 3ds max), try tweaking the highlight colour to a more black/white colour.
    - the silver again, isn't very apple in terms of effect, once you get it though its easy enough to apply to other objects.
    - flooring, the textrured mirror base could do with shadows adding (see above) as at present laptop looks to be floating, you should get a shadow of some sort on most surfaces, although obviously a mirror is less obvious.
    See if theres a way to do 'reflection dimming' on the base, this would reduce the overall brightness of the floor without affecting the main image. Also consider adding a 'fall off' which would fade out the floor reflection at a given distance (this can look really nice if done well)

    3) - texture is needed on the 'metal' if its metal, the colours probably aren't far off apple colours.
    - lighting, maybe reposition the light(s), or if possible look for something like whats called a skylight on 3ds max (its basically a scene illumination tool as if theres a window), as the shaded ones are a tad dark. Worse case scenario add a bit of self luminance to the colours, this is usually a quick an easy trick if its not quite how you want it.
    - flooring, the fall off mentioned earlier would work a treat here.
    - I'd add a subtle gloss/reflection to the screen too

    4) - black is too 'white' looks like it needs less reflection/gloss
    - silver could do with more mirror
    - I would also lower the angle of the picture but thats more of a personal thing

    5/6) - just take the info from above and apply here

    Just as extra things to consider as a general thing.

    Depth of field (where it blurs further away) is a nice effect to know how to use, it can add a extra dimension to images and can also draw the eye to specific parts of a scene.

    The 'plane' used for the base - add in an opacity layer (if you haven't got one make a square .jpg file with a radial gradient from white to black for this) so that the edges can be made transparent. So for example you can have a white floor with a black scene and the edge of the base will fade into the background rather than a harsh/hard edge.

    Try to think like you're taking a photo, consider how you would light the scene if it was a real object, how would you place the camera, the lights.

    Look at the materials, it's very rare to have a perfectly smooth material, theres usually a very subtle texture of some sort. Glass can have a very subtle ripple going through it, wood has the pattern etc.
    Materials are the hardest, you have to take notice of them more than anything else, try to physically see/touch it.
  14. technominds thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2008

    Great advice, and i'm working on all those points!

    C4D does let you change the lense, but I cant for the life of me work out where! It seems to have 65mm, but no 50mm.. although I can set the pixel ratio manually.

    I had a look at your portfolio, the renders of the laptop you did are fantastic.. very photo realistic!
  15. ktbubster macrumors 6502a


    Jan 20, 2007
    Nice looking stuff. I like the speakers personally.

    I wish this program was bigger in the US product/industrial design scene, this is really the first i've heard of it. Compared to Solidworks and Rhino... this looks 100000 times better, (that and it has a native mac version) ... I guess it might have something to do with the engineering and actually manufacturing of the products (although I may not realize the ability of C4D and interfacing with manufacturing specs etc) but it really seems like a nice presentation tool and a lot cleaner then the other programs.

    I am going to have to get the demo and play with it! :)
  16. technominds thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 16, 2008
    Now that i'm getting to grips with it, it really is an insanely great renderer. Check out my most recent renders to see what half an hours work can get you!

    Also, its an open platform and there are tons of plugins for it... check the Maxon website for some serious renders =]

    Have fun!

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