Create 3D Animation

Discussion in 'Design and Graphics' started by mac pro, Jul 21, 2006.

  1. mac pro macrumors member

    Feb 1, 2006
    What is a good App that I can use (a nooby) to experiment around? A demo or something is fine. I just want to play around with 3d animation...
  2. mac pro thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 1, 2006
    maybe I should move this to the Digital Video forum. How do i do this.
  3. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030


    May 18, 2004
    google sketchup is a free's a 3D modeling program you could play around with
  4. Xander562 macrumors 68000


    Apr 2, 2006
    isnt Maya supposed to be really good for this? i think this is what they use for digitaly animate movies. a couple years ago you could download the PLE (personal learning edition) for free.

    EDIT: Ahh yes, here it is: Linky
  5. hotwire132002 macrumors 65816


    Jan 24, 2004
    Cadillac, MI
    Maya is a very powerful program for 3D animation, but based on my personal experience (as well as what I've heard from others) it's got a very, VERY steep learning curve.

    I use Cinema 3D from Maxon -- -- there's a free demo on their site. It does just about everything Maya does, and I've found it's much easier to use.

    Hope this is of some help! =)
  6. ATD macrumors 6502a

    Sep 25, 2005

    Yes, Maya is a complex program with a very very steep learning curve, it took me years hard work to get a good handle on it. The reason for that is Maya gives the user an insane amount of control and it's a very solid program, much more than most of the other programs. When you are looking at these programs, keep in mind that the feature list has little to do with how good the program is. Many of these programs will try to list everything under the sun. It's how well the program does it, not what it claims that makes all the difference.

    mac pro, if you can tell us more about what you want to do with the program maybe the choices can get narrowed down.
  7. Aperture macrumors 68000


    Mar 19, 2006
    You can't move it yourself anywhere. That is a mods job.;)
  8. mac pro thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 1, 2006

    Well...Im not going to be going out and creating a Pixar movie...just want to experiment around..see If I could find myself a new Hobby. 3d animation just looks interesting from what I see.
  9. ATD macrumors 6502a

    Sep 25, 2005

    A few ideas about some programs

    A powerful, rich and very deep program. If you are talking about 3D character animation, Maya is the one most gravitate to. The FX and animation you see in many of the big effects movies is done in Maya. None of the features in the program are 2nd rate.

    Cinema 4D
    I have not used it but many people really really like this app. My understanding is that it's a great all around app and pretty easy to use (easy for a 3D app anyway).

    Free, what more do I need to say!

    Like Cinema 4D it has a lot of people that really like this app. I have seen some great work in this app. Personally, I used it for about a year and I can't stand it. The interface is one big mess and it renders very slowly.

    3D Studio Max
    Maya and Max have the big market share in the 3D field, Max is PC only at this point.

    Electric Image
    Fast and beautiful renders, easy to understand. It was a major player many years ago but has been passed up by other apps. No native modeler, no native dynamics, no HDRI.

    I would pick up the demo version of Maya and Cinema 4D and play around with both of them. 3D takes a long while to learn and the apps are not cheap. After all is said and done, it's about which app works best for you.

    Hope that helps.
  10. mac pro thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 1, 2006
  11. Mr. Anderson Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Nov 1, 2001
    Lightwave isn't bad at all - I use it and its just a matter of getting use to the way it works. They separate the modeler and layout/animation part as two separate apps that are connected via another background app so you can modify the models in modeler and update them immediately in layout.

    And the rendering isn't that slow, its all a matter of what you're rendering and what the settings are - radiosity is going to be slow no matter what app :D

    As for a noob - go for the Cinema4D - its easier to learn.

  12. ATD macrumors 6502a

    Sep 25, 2005

    LOL, I never got used to it. :rolleyes: I felt they designed that interface for the sake of "being different". 3D is hard enough to learn, one should not have to fight the program as well. Personally, I found Maya to be much more straight forward, insanely more complex but tool for tool, more straight forward. Rendering may not seem slow but compared to other apps it's sluggish, Radiosity/GI/Final Gather in Mental Ray (Maya) and Camera (Electric Image) are much faster.

  13. DavidLeblond macrumors 68020


    Jan 6, 2004
    Raleigh, NC
    I play around with 3D stuff as a hobby. I've found a combination of Blender and Wings to be quite powerful. Wings is a nice modeling app and Blender as of late has gotten some quite powerful features (including things like softbody modeling and fluid modeling)... and you can't beat the price!

    They take a tad bit of practice, especially Blender, but they're loads of fun. Plus Blender can handle animation and there are tons of tutorials on it.

    For all the naysayers that say open source software is underpowered, watch this short movie Elephants Dream... I believe all the 3D animation was done using Blender.

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