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oldbat
04-04-2004, 03:54 PM
We are trying to decide between Cinema 4d and Maya
for our graphics design studio. I have limited experience in Maya and appreciate the lights and particles, but no experience in Cinema

Advice from anyone who works on both will be appreciated.

Srek
04-04-2004, 04:57 PM
Hi,
knowing what kind of work you want to do would help. How many people will work with the application?
This has been discussed many times and the general consens was that you have to try out both demos to see what fits you best.
As for lighting and particles, the ligting options in CINEMA stand up to any other app and Thinking Particles will allow for realy sophisticated particle effects.
Cheers
Srek

danb
04-04-2004, 05:35 PM
(cough) Price tag (cough). :p

No really. I prefer cinema4d for graphic design because it is quick. Great renderer, imo, maya's is the slowest.

thorn3d
04-04-2004, 06:56 PM
http://www.cgtalk.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=19315

kevin3d
04-05-2004, 01:37 PM
I teach at Ohio State, which is very committed to Maya, but have selected Cinema4D for my own work.

Based on what Maya users at OSU tell me, Maya is great if you use it all the time. If you don't use it constantly, you will need to "re-learn" it everytime you pick it up.

Cinema4D is, IMHO, much better for graphic designers. Its easier to use, has good intergration with Photoshop & After Effects, and is cheapier (depending on your options). Etc.

Both are great apps!


see http://www.insidecg.com/feature.php?id=136

andrewj
04-05-2004, 01:55 PM
a bit late, but i think it may be still okay to post a reply here:

it totally depends on the things you want to do with it. we use both softwares in our studio.

if you want to get a highend product you will need cinema with all its modules which costs as much as maya complete (nearly).

maya has some tools to offer which i miss totally in cinema 4d:

highend patch/nurbs modelling tools. to me these tools are a must, because this modelling technique is fast (if you know it)

integrated swift 3d renderer (if you need vectorrenderings in your daily work this is a big plus to maya. cinemas flash exporter is ... hmm.

fritzman
04-05-2004, 02:02 PM
Hi Andrew,

how about the animation features? Would you please tell which one you like more, which ones are easier to learn, which ones are better suited for serious character animation? I don't like Mocca and I would like to see your opinion from a user of both apps.

Thanx a lot! :thumbsup:


All the best, FRitz

cookepuss
04-05-2004, 04:28 PM
if you want to get a highend product you will need cinema with all its modules which costs as much as maya complete (nearly).
Yeah, but for that price you also get BodyPaint2, which is certainly a plus.

highend patch/nurbs modelling tools. to me these tools are a must, because this modelling technique is fast (if you know it)
Yeah. To you, they are a must. To others, they're very nice to have, but many people can do without them. Not everybody is into NURBS, as they come with a certain set of problems. For most people, the current NURBS generators are more than adequate. Personally, I find HyperNURBS much more intuitive when it comes to character work.

Do I think that C4D should have better NURBS? Yeah. Do I miss them? Not really. Rhino holds a place in my heart there.

(if you need vectorrenderings in your daily work this is a big plus to maya. cinemas flash exporter is ... hmm.
Yes the Flash Exporter stinks. It's slow and buggy, often producing errant vectors. HOWEVER, if you're serious about stylized rendering, there's a good chance that you might be interested in Sketch & Toon. The AI export is quite solid. Excellent for print work and compiling toons for the web. S&T is not for everybody. This is really a niche module.

how about the animation features?
Maya has superior functionality here. There's no getting around that. HOWEVER, that's not to say that C4D is a lightweight. Not at all. It already has everything you need do serious character animation work. One just needs to take the time to learn the tools and make them second nature. Most users don't, yet complain constantly. There are much worse character animation packages than C4D. Excellent work has also been produced by those bad packages too. It's really all up to the artist and how much time he/she is willing to invest in mastering to tools and streamlining their workflow. It's also up to the end user to make the most out of XPresso. Most users, in my observation, are pretty much afraid of it.


BTW, here's an article that some friends and I wrote at InsideCG....
http://www.insidecg.com/printfeature.php?id=136

These are fairly subjective views of the products in question, but you should be able to gather some important info. I wrote the section for C4D, which was at 8.2 at the time.

I prefer C4D mainly because of the smooth workflow. Comparatively, Maya can feel clunky at times. This is really a testament to how refined the C4D interface is.

I'm willing to deal with stuff like lackluster NURBS or no N-gons because C4D is much faster to work with. Coming off of one of those "bad character animation apps", I like MOCCA. Setup could be easier, but once you're used to it it's no big problem. Using C4D's animation tools are a breeze if you just take the time.

I'm using C4D for my (fairly long) short film, btw.

kevin3d
04-05-2004, 05:21 PM
Originally posted by cookepuss
BTW, here's an article that some friends and I wrote at InsideCG....
http://www.insidecg.com/printfeature.php?id=136

That was a very helpful article, BTW.

cookepuss
04-05-2004, 05:51 PM
Thanks.

I'm also a moderator at CGchat. The article was originally meant to end the constant stream of "best app" threads that kept popping up. I came up with a set of questions that our mods could answer, hoping to just set it as a sticky to the boards. Admin liked it so much that it also ended up as a feature article.

I wound up doing the C4D portion mainly because I'm one of the only C4D users there, as well as the guy who reviewed it for InsideCG.

fritzman
04-05-2004, 09:21 PM
Hi Rob,

I read the program descriptions at CGchat and to be honest it wasn't very informative to me as it it headed straight to beginners and isn't as in depth as I wished it would be. Any chance on something like that but answering some more advanced questions? It didn't really help me to read statements like "Hey, Mocca is good. You only have to know how to use it." That is for sure true for most stuff in all of these apps and I read to many unprecise statements like that in these articles.
Nevertheless: Thanx a lot for putting these up as it can help to avoid certain common questions.


All the best, FRitz

MJV
04-05-2004, 10:01 PM
Originally posted by cookepuss

Maya has superior functionality here. There's no getting around that. HOWEVER, that's not to say that C4D is a lightweight. Not at all. It already has everything you need do serious character animation work.

This is often heard yet never proven. Approach Cinema with the expectation that it's a good tool for CA and you will be sorely disappionted. The fact is that Cinema does not have the toolset to do serious character animation. Not even close. It might have them someday, but currently it doesn't. Fortunately we have FBX and Motion Builder.

tjnyc
04-05-2004, 10:22 PM
The article is good, I agreed with the opinion on Maya, but I felt the XSI review was not coming from a professional XSI user. Too much LW comparison and why it didn't stack up to LW in some areas, rather biased review. He was also wrong in 3 of his weakness comments about XSI, which was a red flag for me. It would have been better that an actual XSI professional was asked these questions, which brings me to my point, which is you need to look at more reviews and opinions as one articles won't give a clear review of a product(s), go to the websites and try out the free version and the tutorials and look at what others think about the application you are interested in. At the end of the day your opinon is what should matter the most when choosing, so make sure you know everything you need to know.


Cheers,

cookepuss
04-05-2004, 10:39 PM
I read the program descriptions at CGchat and to be honest it wasn't very informative to me as it it headed straight to beginners and isn't as in depth as I wished it would be.
Yeah. Naturally, newbies are the ones who tend on asking the "best program" question. They were our target audience with that article. I can understand your frustration there.

Any chance on something like that but answering some more advanced questions?
I'll talk to the guys. Maybe we could come up with a "sequel" article of sorts that address more advanced issues.

This is often heard yet never proven. Approach Cinema with the expectation that it's a good tool for CA and you will be sorely disappionted.
I had a much longer response to this, but edited it for personal reasons. I'll just leave it at this. Wait and watch. :)

cookepuss
04-05-2004, 10:48 PM
The article is good, I agreed with the opinion on Maya, but I felt the XSI review was not coming from a professional XSI user.
Mario Ucci (aka. Loganarts) is very accomplished artist. I'm not aware of what his experience level with XSI is, but his art certainly speaks for itself.

http://www.3dluvr.com/loganarts/2004.htm

Too much LW comparison and why it didn't stack up to LW in some areas, rather biased review.
It's not a review. :) The article even states that this roundtable is purely opinion based.

which is you need to look at more reviews and opinions as one articles won't give a clear review of a product(s), go to the websites and try out the free version and the tutorials and look at what others think about the application you are interested in. At the end of the day your opinon is what should matter the most when choosing, so make sure you know everything you need to know.
This too is mentioned at the very beginning of that article. Research is key to any major purchase. MJV may not like like C4D's CA tools, but that's a matter of personal preference. I, for one, could not tolerate Motion Builder. That's just a personal preference though. To each his own.

anobrin
04-06-2004, 02:27 AM
[i] MJV may not like like C4D's CA tools, but that's a matter of personal preference. I, for one, could not tolerate Motion Builder. That's just a personal preference though. To each his own. [/B]

Agreed to each his own
but the lack of a Dope sheet and real time feed back
of rigged characters
makes Cinema 4DXL USELESS for any worthhile
character animation in my opinion :wise:

character animation involves two major parts:
Blocking out the broad movements
and then refining them and adding the secondary
motion to the characters movement
without a dope sheet this is an excercise in futility
:rolleyes:

Per-Anders
04-06-2004, 02:44 AM
ok, i personally don't like animation at all in cinema, however to correct a couple of points.

firstly, the timeline *is* a dopesheet in cinema. all it's missing in that regards is overlayed grid and folding tracks.

as for realtime feedback. i agree SIK is slow, but smart bones are as fast as their counterparts in maya. Xpresso expressions are slow, and there is a lack of constraint controllers (though i have a few that i made for my person use), but scripted controllers are mostly fine. it all depends what you mean by realtime with rigged characters, and the complexity of the character. if you mean when teh playhead is moving you can manipulate values and see them update as that happens, then it's indeed not realtime at all... but then i don't believe that maya has that functionality either, so far i've only experienced it in xsi. general posing etc is all pretty realtime. it's down to how optimised you make your rig and mesh.

cookepuss
04-06-2004, 03:19 AM
Originally posted by mdme_sadie
firstly, the timeline *is* a dopesheet in cinema. all it's missing in that regards is overlayed grid and folding tracks.
Something which I think that you already mentioned to him back in November. :rolleyes:

I think that he should see what a really bad animation system is like. Let's make him use trueSpace or Carrara. :applause:

Ben Sones
04-06-2004, 03:33 AM
For what it's worth, I prefer Cinema 4D for modeling--at least of the subdivision (HyperNURBS) variety. For NURBS, I use Rhino. Maya has it's advantages, but good NURBS tools aren't among them.

cookepuss
04-06-2004, 03:58 AM
Yeah. That's the pitfall of moving from a dedicated NURBS modeler to a more generalized 3D app. I think that, once you've used Rhino, all other NURBS implementations seem weak.

Regarding C4D's NURBS though, they are fairly weak. I also own trueSpace6, left over from my review of that product. Even tS6 has better NURBS support. :(

If one really wished to, this thread could be turned into a virtual wish list of features. The bottom line is, each program has its strengths and weakness. Some are absolute truths. Others are relative to the preferences of the end user.

You could really b***h and moan all day about what C4D has and what it doesn't have. Then again, you could do the same with every program. The one thing I've learned in the 14 years I've been doing 3D is that the most important tools are talent and imagination. Without either, even the best 3D program is worthless.

Just use your best judgement when it comes to purchasing your app. I've seen fantastic work come from the most unlikely of sources. Sometimes the journey is a little rockier on the other road. Ultimately, talent rules all.

thorn3d
04-06-2004, 07:10 AM
Originally posted by MJV
This is often heard yet never proven. Approach Cinema with the expectation that it's a good tool for CA and you will be sorely disappionted. The fact is that Cinema does not have the toolset to do serious character animation. Not even close. It might have them someday, but currently it doesn't. Fortunately we have FBX and Motion Builder.

Michael is quite correct.

The problem with the current toolset is that technically it has all the buttons, sliders, and fancy names - all these things make it seem that it's just a great feature set, and if there's a problem - well, it's the user.

To try and even put C4D in the same sentence with Maya or XSI when talking about character toolsets is simply wishful thinking. It's either a fanboy making the comment, or a masochist.

It's not just a matter of playback speed, it's workflow. It's algorythms. It's about seeing the forest AND the trees, so to speak.

C4D has a lot of power, but characters is not one of them. People can continue to praise MOCCA and CAPPUCHINO and Soft IK and SmartBones and Claude Bonet, but at the end of it all C4D is still the weakest character app when compared to 3dsmax, Maya, and XSI.

People are going to talk about cost now... well, to hell with cost. I don't believe the current situation has anything to do with cost, and raising the price $500 to Maya's level won't solve it.

thorn

fritzman
04-06-2004, 08:29 AM
Originally posted by thorn3d
Michael is quite correct.

The problem with the current toolset is that technically it has all the buttons, sliders, and fancy names - all these things make it seem that it's just a great feature set, and if there's a problem - well, it's the user.

To try and even put C4D in the same sentence with Maya or XSI when talking about character toolsets is simply wishful thinking. It's either a fanboy making the comment, or a masochist.

It's not just a matter of playback speed, it's workflow. It's algorythms. It's about seeing the forest AND the trees, so to speak.

C4D has a lot of power, but characters is not one of them. People can continue to praise MOCCA and CAPPUCHINO and Soft IK and SmartBones and Claude Bonet, but at the end of it all C4D is still the weakest character app when compared to 3dsmax, Maya, and XSI.

People are going to talk about cost now... well, to hell with cost. I don't believe the current situation has anything to do with cost, and raising the price $500 to Maya's level won't solve it.

thorn


That's exactly my point. :thumbsup:

The important thing is workflow. Not if something is theoretically able to do things.
I come from the software sequencer world working with VST instruments and FX. There are solutions that can do the job and a lot of stuff is a matter of taste (e.g. sound).
But at the end of the day I'm not interested in how many theoretical feature something has but in how much I did achieve. What are my results?
Some stuff helps ME to get results and some stuff only has features.

Yes, there are these strange people who just want to have TOOLS with a WORKFLOW that suits THEM! And not the other way round.
Several car mechanics told me that you NEED good TOOLS to do the job correctly and in the demanded time. This is a professional point of view. :wavey:

Actually that's it what I'm talking about: Why struggeling with a tool that stands in your way while another one HELPS you get the job done because it works better for YOU?
I don't know of many people who have little to no problems working with Mocca. I know nearly no one who LOVES Mocca. I know of a lot of people who are complaining about it. Check the forums. Yes, these are all the idiots (noobies) who don't know how to use their TOOLS? Mocca is being advertised as EASY and even the manual claims that. What a bad joke. And yes, I spent several weeks with Mocca with it's manual and the available tutorials. :rolleyes:

This has to be rethought. Real life will proove if a tool is good or not. Either it WILL be used or NOT.


All the best, FRitz

lllab
04-06-2004, 10:25 AM
i personally dont care about CA stuff, so cinema is just fine for me in this respect.

the most important thing is the renderer, its quailty, speed, ease of use, netrender, material system etc.and good basic animation tools, good partikelssystem etc.

stillthere are things i would like to see in cinema, for example a professional, fast dynamic system like maya has...and maybe some next step of TP.
nurbs of course would be nive to be able to import rhino geometry without tesselation, but...


at the end i think comparing these to apps donnot make sense at all. people doing CA might be better of with maya anyway, that will probably ever be so, cinema should further develope its own way.
one of cinema strenght is the good rendering, with good speed, and since 8.5 also a very good material system. all this should be brought even further. also should cinema get an even better radiocity/GI system (maybe both like xsi) "the fastest on earth:-) etc....

if cinema tries to mimic maya it will always loose......

cinema is a very good app, so is maya, so is xsi and probably 3dmax. they all have its area where they are best. cinema should concentrate on its area(which is not so much CA)

i think S&T was a step in the right direction, i hope for a hyper advanced radiocity AND GI Module, with
fast area shadows ,shader trees etc... ( maybe advanced render II:-)

my 2 cent of course

cheers

lllab

brammelo
04-06-2004, 10:28 AM
Originally posted by Ben Sones
For NURBS, I use Rhino. Maya has it's advantages, but good NURBS tools aren't among them.

One major advantage: Maya's NURBS have a history. I don't recall Rhino having a history. Or did they change that in the current version?

Cheers,
BaRa

wuensch
04-06-2004, 10:37 AM
I agree about CA not being the strong part of Cinema, but for me personally this gap has been closed with fbx connection and Motionbuilder.
Also there is Messiah:Animate available as Character animation tool with c4d connection (now finally workable I was told).
Its not in the core app and will need additional learning, but MB and M:A are both top-notch CA tools that are widely used. Demos are available at their website (kaydara.com and projectmessiah.com)
If your main focus would be CA, then Cinema is certainly not No1 choice.
It is very good for the rest of tasks, and the shortcomings in CA were never less than today due to availabilty of 2 excellent CA packages for Cinema and the.fbx connection which makes it possible to animate in Maya or Max or whatever if you want to in your pipeline..
Mocca is half-baked, I agree and could use an update.
I would advise anyone trying to CA in Cinema to get the Simplemaker 2 PlugIn (http://www.cinemax4d.de)-- it converts your model into lowpoly without loosing the Weighting or form, so you an gain a lot of animation-speed by animating the proxy and transferring tha animation to the hiRes model (just a drag and drop in timeline--)--
Mme Sadie,when in doubt what is meant by real-time, try Motionbuilder-- seeing is believing.
Nothing comes close to MB speed IMHO.
(I had a 70000 Poly Model with expressions animated at over 15 fps on a dual Athlon 1800 ).
Its faster than anything I have seen (10x the animation speed of Maya according to Kaydara, probably 15 times that of C4D)

Olli

michaeli
04-06-2004, 11:15 AM
Originally posted by Olli Wuensch

Mme Sadie,when in doubt what is meant by real-time, try Motionbuilder-- seeing is believing.
Nothing comes close to MB speed IMHO.
(I had a 70000 Poly Model with expressions animated at over 15 fps on a dual Athlon 1800 ).
Its faster than anything I have seen (10x the animation speed of Maya according to Kaydara, probably 15 times that of C4D)

Olli

That sounds interesting, just curious how MB achieve this realtime animation?

Regarding to CA, i feel Animation Master is really "easy to learn and animate", Jeff-Lew has show its power in his DVD, and now, Eago's plugin seems the right direction. :applause:

wuensch
04-06-2004, 11:31 AM
I guess thats Kaydaras secret ;-)
They are licencing their engine for real-time games, I have seen.

hehe--Animationmaster, thats a kind of its own--
It has a fantastic animation toolset even the big players are only starting to get the idea of these days,really easy to use,which would be wonderful if-- yes, if it did not crash all the time and be such a 3d island with no hope of escape.
Also the renderer (who is not really up to standard anymore) is not able to handle print-resulutions with the cartoon shader (which,before sketch & toon I considered the best on the market, but Sketch beats the crap out of anything I have seen so far now).

Olli

Per-Anders
04-06-2004, 11:57 AM
MB uses essentially a game engine. i.e. it doesn't deal with full poly faces etc. and as a result if you attempt to put in a heavy poly model, or multiple heavy models it slows down to comparable or even slower speeds than for instance maya. however for single low to medium res meshes it's fast. regardless other apps are not really slouches and it would be unfair to use these criteria for "real time" (which in truth generally means as low as 10fps), as even xsi and maya with their excellent CA tools would be argued to be "crippled" by those standards.

wuensch
04-06-2004, 01:17 PM
agreed, whats real time--- wholly dependent on the project.
On the otehr hand, MB is truly fast when animating-yes, it will slow down finally (but, as I said, 80000 poly character, 256 MB standard Geforce card--- the same character is practically unanimatable in Cinema , and I assume in Maya as well (which has much faster Morphs but is not so far away in general poly-pushing performance. Its faster than C4D, though)
I finally reduced the character with simplemaker 2 to be able to animate with more than one character in MB.
But the fact remains in MBs favor:
Its mucho faster (Do I care how it works behind the scenes ?--not really,I find it intersting, though, but as an animator I have to say that a "near realtime performance (which means 12 fps or
more in Editor refresh to me) changes the speed you can work with and the quality of the results dramatically.
There is a huge difference between 5 fps playback and 15 fps (or even 25 or more fps) I consider 8 fps the absolute minimum for animation (but you will have to testrender a lot-- 20 fps, and you will just animate and animate and animate).

With a hi-poly character you will have to create an animation-proxy in any software (or die trying to animate it)--
but this proxy will be likely to animate much faster in MB than in the main-app, so faster is faster..
(Messiah:Animate is very fast, too, but its a OpenGL rendersystem that does not display textures, and I think it is still not as fast as MB, but I have not benchmarked because I sold my M:A)

Olli

RorrKonn
04-06-2004, 02:21 PM
I think that he should see what a really bad animation system is like. Let's make him use trueSpace or Carrara.

TrueSpace 6.6SP2 is a killer App.

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

AdamT
04-06-2004, 02:34 PM
Originally posted by mdme_sadie
MB uses essentially a game engine. i.e. it doesn't deal with full poly faces etc. and as a result if you attempt to put in a heavy poly model, or multiple heavy models it slows down to comparable or even slower speeds than for instance maya. however for single low to medium res meshes it's fast.
I suppose it depends upon what you mean by a heavy poly model. I have about the same experience as Olli--animating a 71k poly character in MB and maintaining a steady 13-15 fps in the editor. This qualifies as realtime IMO, and from what I've been told Maya would crawl with this poly count.

You also have the option of sending unsmoothed HN objects to MB and then turning on HN for final rendering in Cinema, which can allow you to animate in real time with characters that have silly poly counts when all is said and done.

Overall I'd say Mocca was a step in the right direction, but also a bit of a misstep. The feature feature of that package is SoftIK, which is cool, but it's practical uses are pretty limited. A lot of folks get disgusted with Mocca when they attempt to use SIK for everything, which IMO is a bad idea. OTOH, Mocca didn't provide an easy-to-use hard IK system which would have been less sexy but more useful. It's a shame that Golem wasn't updated and included in the module. It looks like Eago's plugins and Bonderland are bringing back a lot of that functionality. Claude Bonet is a nice addition, but the absence weight blending makes it less than ideal. Posemixer has some great features, but it's a memory hog and the sliders can't be reordered. Then there are timeline issues that make CA pretty painful--mainly uncollapsible tracks. Looks like we're a Mocca update away from having a decent CA solution inside Cinema.

wuensch
04-06-2004, 03:12 PM
Adam,
I agree 100%.
its exactly my perception of MOCCA.
Moccas Claude Bonnet is terrific if you add Tag Managers power to convert CB to Vertexmaps and to blur the maps with a control spline ( I have Tag Manager, but the creator has sadly passed away recently.I seriously hope that Maxon will incorporate that functionality soon in c4d).
Without that ability it is clumsy.
And the focus on SoftIk, as nice as it is, is misleading--
with HardIk I would wish for such nice setup-tools,too.

On the other hand its is easy and fast to bone and weight a character with above mentioned tools--
then move it to MB and start animating right away---could not be much better or faster for me.
So in conjunction with MB, the pipeline is areal winner.
Plus, something some do not like:
I love the standardized MB rig, and the resulting fact that every motion of one Character can easily be transferred to another character.
Its a terrific rig and its instantly available with one click, even with fingertip floor-contact.
Since the Thread title was Maya vs.Cinema, one addition:
The writer mentioned it is for a GRAPHICS DESIGN STUDIO---
So Character animation, as much as the designers may wish, will most likely not be the prime target for the software.

I dont know about those guys, but I know a lot of Graphic Designes and from that experience I would say:
Give them c4d, not Maya (unless you have a real Maya Operator employed in the company).
Maya does not have such a nice and easy to use tool to produce editable 3D text.




Olli
:scream:

Ben Sones
04-06-2004, 03:24 PM
Originally posted by brammelo
One major advantage: Maya's NURBS have a history. I don't recall Rhino having a history. Or did they change that in the current version?


They don't, and I do like that about Maya's NURBS. But it's never bothered me much, probably because Rhino involves a lot less fiddling around to get things to work right. Maya is way too finnicky in that regard--a lot of stuff that would require lots of history tweaking in Maya (getting surfaces to line up properly, for instance) just works in Rhino. I've done a fair bit of modeling in both apps, but I find that I can usually model NURBS objects a lot faster in Rhino.

brammelo
04-06-2004, 03:27 PM
Originally posted by Ben Sones
They don't, and I do like that about Maya's NURBS. But it's never bothered me much, probably Rhino involves a lot less fiddling around to get things to work right. Maya is way too finnicky in that regard--a lot of stuff that would require lots of history tweaking in Maya (getting surfaces to line up properly, for instance) just works in Rhino. I've done a fair bit of modeling in both apps, but I find that I can usually model NURBS objects a lot faster in Rhino.

Well, I do agree about Maya's not-too-good implementation of NURBS. However, the history thing is a big advantage IF implemented correctly. When you consider StudioTools - NURBS and history (and a lot more) - you'll notice that this history thing is one of the more interesting aspects of the program. But of couse, entry-level StudioTools costs 5 times more than Maya, so... ;-)

Cheers,
BaRa

danb
04-06-2004, 03:29 PM
As everybody is talking about motion builder i thought i would just say, don't forget about messiah. Just my preference when working with an external animation app. Check it out. Works great and imo more customizable than MB. Plus its got things like softbodies and autowalker and such:thumbsup:

MJV
04-06-2004, 08:08 PM
Originally posted by thorn3d
Michael is quite correct.

The problem with the current toolset is that technically it has all the buttons, sliders, and fancy names - all these things make it seem that it's just a great feature set, and if there's a problem - well, it's the user.

To try and even put C4D in the same sentence with Maya or XSI when talking about character toolsets is simply wishful thinking. It's either a fanboy making the comment, or a masochist.

It's not just a matter of playback speed, it's workflow. It's algorythms. It's about seeing the forest AND the trees, so to speak.

C4D has a lot of power, but characters is not one of them. People can continue to praise MOCCA and CAPPUCHINO and Soft IK and SmartBones and Claude Bonet, but at the end of it all C4D is still the weakest character app when compared to 3dsmax, Maya, and XSI.

People are going to talk about cost now... well, to hell with cost. I don't believe the current situation has anything to do with cost, and raising the price $500 to Maya's level won't solve it.

thorn

Only a prolonged, concerted, focused effort could have any impact on the situation. The problem is it truly does Cinema, and those who want to see Cinema have decent CA tools, a disservice when people falsely claim that Cinema's CA tools are ok when in fact they are anything but ok. People have to first recognize and acknowledge that Cinema's CA tools are unacceptably poor before anything can or will be done to fix it. As far as the general Maya vs Cinema debate goes, I am not exaggerating when I say that I personally don't like Maya at all and never want to use it ever again, but that doesn't mean that Cinema's CA tools don't need fixing.

LucentDreams
04-06-2004, 09:29 PM
in all honesty CA tools in general are nothing more then xpressions not tols, and cinema is capable, very capable. Do I think its as good as maya or XSI. No, its not, but its not useless as thorn and micael and others make it out to be.I'm till working on improving my rigs each go I have at it, but I know enough to get a working character easily. I"m simply looking for even beter ways to do it. Keep an eye out for ComputerArts Project at the end of this month. Granted the tutorial itself will be a a bit of a joke as in depth coverage goes the files should be worth the investment.

When it comes to rigging a character trust me its a specialised skill all in its own and frankly I"m seeing more and more people thinking it should be childs play 3 seconds aand then on to animating. Good rigging is a very technicaly demanding artform, thats right I said artform.

I don't feel that C4D is up to snuff in terms of CA, but it does annoy me when people say its useless.

And while support for motionbuilder and messiah are great to have, to say that puts ous on par with "X" app in any case is rediculous, most of those apps will have that support as well forone, and two, why would using another app count as being on par, since when does 2=1?

wuensch
04-06-2004, 10:17 PM
if 2 apps specialized and working in a pipeline work fine, then its fine.
If a solid connection exists (thats true for c4d and motionbuilder).
And--
I dont even need to rig (OK, bones and Weighting are still necessary)..
If thats what people want, then its great if a software can deliver that.
Yes Maya has support for .FBX and Motionbuilder , too.
But having a working solid pipeline with C4D(which has a lot of advantages , its just not strong in CA) is a solution for me--- and as it seems for a lot of people.
And making a proper rig---
well , I dont consider it an art-form, but a craft.
A craft poorly documented for most apps (if no good secondary literature exists, mayas very strong point).
And sometimes the art is to master inferior or not userfriendly tools.
An auto-rigging system is what nearly everybody who is not a professional Rigger wants.
I think a 3 second rig is anice thing.
Even the Maya folks spend money for it.
MB has it and thats nice.
Messiah:Animate has it (now they have it in 4, nicely implemented, talking about competition).
XSI has it.
There are Plugs for Max and Lightwave.
If not for users requesting more accessible technology we would still code the renderer in a text-editor.
How are you supposed to animate if you dont have a decent rig?

Check out Messiah Animate if you really are into rigging,
thats the apps absolute strong point, nothing like it.

You can rig your Character while you animate (yes, really) and even rig it with 2 or more rigs that can kick in at the same or different times. Have not seen that in any other app.
A riggers dream.


Olli

AdamT
04-06-2004, 11:10 PM
Originally posted by Olli Wuensch
You can rig your Character while you animate (yes, really) and even rig it with 2 or more rigs that can kick in at the same or different times. Have not seen that in any other app.
A riggers dream.


Olli

Not to mention that you hardly have to bother with skinning! I may dive back into M:A one day, but only if the connection and the app are 1000% solid.

thorn3d
04-06-2004, 11:38 PM
Rigging is definately an artform, or craft, or whatever one wishes to call it. No argument there at all.

It's certainly more than a couple of leg bones linked to a null controller - ok, we're done, call it a day and have beer. ;)

But my point is this: XL doesn't make it easy. It doesn't even ATTEMPT to make it easy. It just gives you 120 xpresso nodes and rubber-band clown IK, and says "Hey, the tools are here. Get to it."

I honestly ... HONESTLY wonder if some (not all) of the people praising XL's character tools have spent a substancial amount of time with max, XSI, or Maya. I know Kai has a bit of time under his belt with max; i'm just speaking of users generally. But it's practically night and day.

In (some) other apps, IK just works... it's stable, doesn't wiggle around, doesn't demand of 2-3 xpressions for each joint, plus a redundancy of null parents. It just works, end of story. Yes, you can get into the nuts and bolts and add lots of secondary control action, set up various automatic expressions, all that. But my point is: for the basic bipedal rig it is rather simple to create a stable generic rig in a very small amount of time.

I'm happy for those that have the patience to work with XL's character tools. But it's also important to note shortcomings when they exist... not gloss over them, or pretend they don't exist because we know 17 workarounds. Things never improve unless it's pointed out that they need to be improved.

BTW, I agree it's a bit out-of-scope to get into MotionBuilder and Messiah. It's good these solutions exist, but doesn't keep a level playing field when comparing XL to Maya.

thorn

RorrKonn
04-07-2004, 12:13 AM
Poser is the easiest for character Animation.
but easiest don't mean best.
I could use Poser just as good as any other App with Robots.but Flesh ...

The Question that's been asked since the dawn of 3D.
Which App's the best ?

The only Answer.
Which ever App clicks with you.Only you can answer that.check out the Demo's,LV's.

Me personally I like playing with all the App's.one day I might find that perfect App ;)
Sort new to C4D,Think it's a killer App.Great for modeling humans with IK's attached
and once ya have ya Character, BodyPaint2 for mapping is excellent.

Don't have MOCCO.it's on my check App out list, just haven't gotten there yet.
Soft IK's our for organics " Humans flesh and bones " and Hard IK's our for solids " Robots " ?

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

LucentDreams
04-07-2004, 03:49 AM
Originally posted by RorrKonn
Poser is the easiest for character Animation.
but easiest don't mean best.
I could use Poser just as good as any other App with Robots.but Flesh ...

Don't have MOCCO.it's on my check App out list, just haven't gotten there yet.
Soft IK's our for organics " Humans flesh and bones " and Hard IK's our for solids " Robots " ?

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

The only difference between robots and organics for rigging is the skinning IMO a leg still neds to be setup the same way, and arm a head its how you animate them thats makes them what they are.

As for your SIK vs HIK comment, your going to be equally disappointed as many other MOCCA purchasers with that train of thought.

I"d put it more like, SIK is good for overalpping action or really looe character animation, and HIK is good when you want something to go where you put it. Or something more to that affect then good for inorganics. Most apps (well practicaly all apps before R8) only have hard IK, know simply as IK, the concept is becoming popular to have bone dynamics now (I believe NT is adding this to LW8). I guarantee you HIK works for any type of character animaiton and to name an example movie that used hard IK would be pointless as any cgfilm with a character has used this and or FK.

wuensch
04-07-2004, 08:54 AM
I agree that it is not perfect to point to MB and M:A when comparing c4d to Maya, but whats wrong about pointing that (now) there are 2 working connections to available and widely used apps for character animation?

Character Studio used to be a Plug-In for Max , as well as Reactor until Discreet bought them and integrated them.

Characterwise, C4D can not remotely reach Maya but with one of the above solutions added to the pipeline it is possible to do CA in conjunction with Cinema, and in a reasonable time frame..maybe not LOTR- Style, but keep in mind that the guy who started the thread is talking about Graphic Designers.

Now, Cinema has advantages, too---
talking about a fast and easy to handle renderer, a very animatable architecture (nearly every parameter can be animated), super Light system( Soft Shadows through Alpha-Masks (yes, thats nice for a graphics designer)), and easy to use point and click expression system (for those that dont want to learn a scripting language), an easy to use and very capable Material system (not a shader tree as Maya, but with the new layer system very easy to make complex stuff),
lots of affordable PlugIns available (not as many as Max, but cheaper than Mayas)(especially the great Mesh Surgery as a mModelling speed up),
it is relatively easy to start with (which means a good interface), Bodypaint as a 3D painting option integrated, a high-end Particle system that is very flexible (Thinking particles, could use a couple of presets, though).
Downside:
no Nurbs, no N-Gons, no cloth simulatioin, weak in CA.
My personal opinion:
if you want to do full time Character animation, go with Maya.
For a Graphics Designer, go with Cinema .
I know several Graphics Designers that are very happy with Cinema.(Actually I think that this profession is one of Cinemas top clients).

Olli

fritzman
04-07-2004, 10:54 AM
WOW!

I downloaded the Messiah:Animate demo VIDEOS to see what they can do with it.
It's a shocker. Did I say that Mocca is not cool? I changed my mind. Mocca is a tool for masochists. If you want to have it easy and GET SOME ANIMATION DONE and don't want to waste time with RIGGING then I think Messiah:Animate is much much better. See it for yourself. Everything in Mocca is absolutely way behind. I'm looking forward to Mocca 3.0. :bounce:

I'm off to check the Motionbuilder. Maybe they are even cooler.
I think I understand why Maxon teamed up with Kaydara and brought us some special deals for MB: They KNOW that Mocca doesn't rock. That simple. Sorry but I'm not a fan but just a customer. I'm not interested in defending my investment but I want to ANIMATE stuff.


All the best, FRitz

wuensch
04-07-2004, 12:20 PM
see---thats what I am talking about.
If another app can fill the gap (and Messiah is very good at that, even by Maya standards especially if you consider the sheer spee) then why not consider it a pipeline?
Its not necessary to have it all in one app as long as it works.
Motionbuilder is totally different from messiah, niot a rigging machine---make sure to watch the excellent videos in the kaydara support section.
Olli

danb
04-07-2004, 12:38 PM
Oli those are exactly my sentiments. As long as everything works well together why does it need to be integrated.

My soon to be "pipeline", Cinema4d 8.5xl, Messiah Animate 4.0, RealFlow 2.5. Now all i will need is a good cloth simulator like Syflex (hint-Maxon-hint) and i will be one happy little camper.

Imo that pipeline should cover every aspect of 3d excellently. Realflow for particle and fluid simulation (along with the already excellent TP). M:A for character animation. Cinema for its kick butt renderer and everything else it offers. And someday (soon i hope) a cloth simulator. All for $3,000+/- less than Maya Unlimited. Which would cover all these aspects.

Oh yeah don't forget Shave and Haircut for the hair.

jono338
04-07-2004, 01:30 PM
Danb, are you using M:A? Can you comment on the stability of the link.

Can anyone else comment from experience about the current state of play with the M:A link.

When I was looking at it some time ago, it was causing peoples brains to explode, so I left it.

Cheers.

wuensch
04-07-2004, 01:35 PM
that was my experience, too back in M:A3 times---
but I have heard that the new connection is working and that it is possible to work out animation in M:A and later on put it into the c4d scene---
I cannot verify myself, , just waht I heard---
made me intersted in M:A ahgain, but honestly I dont have the time to dig into another app, I have become familiar with Motionbuilder now and it suits my purpose wonderfully.

Olli

fxgogo
04-07-2004, 02:17 PM
I am a MAX user during my day job, and I find it had to say it is better suited to CA compared to C4D. If you don't have the character studio plugin, you are stuck with the skin modifier and a bunch of simple constaints. I have not used Maya or XSI, but to me the standard bearer of power CA features with a brilliant difficulty curve is Animation Master, and like a previous poster, if it were not for its 'Island' approach to 3D I would use it.

anobrin
04-07-2004, 02:33 PM
Originally posted by mdme_sadie
ok, i personally don't like animation at all in cinema, however to correct a couple of points.

firstly, the timeline *is* a dopesheet in cinema. all it's missing in that regards is overlayed grid and folding tracks.



Pardon me but without collapsable tracks that allow you to see EVERY channel
and select and move groups of key frames at will
for any channel or scene element, it is NOT
a Dopesheet no matter what one may wish to call it. :blush:

as far as "realtime" feed back I think it would be nice
if cinema had an "articulated bounding box" preview
mode where you could see all of the charcters body parts as "boxes"

the link below (8 megs!!) shows me creating some simple movments
on a character that has 74,510 polygons!!
but because I can switch to "articulated bounding box" mode
I am able to select ANY bodypart,channel,scene element including
over 200 built in morphs
via my Dopesheet(shown on the right)

http://66.70.166.29/promo/screencap.mpg

I can set key frames in my Graph editor (shown on the bottum)
and can switch my graph interpolation from loop interpolation to
quarternion interpolation on the fly and change my key frames
selections from spline, linear,constant and of course break spline
to prevent overshoot in the graph editor.
I have user definable "limits"( constraints of a sorts) to keep
my characters range of motion within normal human range
and can turn on IK for the hands and feet on the fly at any point
while creating/editing the animation.

the clip below shows a low res preview render of the same simple movements
rendered with textures (Some male nudity!!) :eek:

http://66.70.166.29/motions/previs.mpg

Dont fool yourself friends
a REAL Dope sheet is a powerful MUST HAVE tool
in ANY chracter animation program.

fritzman
04-07-2004, 03:27 PM
Originally posted by Olli Wuensch
see---thats what I am talking about.
If another app can fill the gap (and Messiah is very good at that, even by Maya standards especially if you consider the sheer spee) then why not consider it a pipeline?
Its not necessary to have it all in one app as long as it works.
Motionbuilder is totally different from messiah, niot a rigging machine---make sure to watch the excellent videos in the kaydara support section.
Olli

Hi Olli,

thanx for the hint to the support section. I only found the demo videos (downloading right now).
Yes I start to see it that way, too. I surely wish to have it ALL in one app but if it doesn't work that way a pipeline that works is much better that a one app solution that hinders my workflow.
Would you please tell me from your user point of view what the strengths of MB and messiah are compared to each other? Left asside the connection of messiah to C4D just thinking that it really works cool now (I sure will check it in depth before my decision).


Thanx a lot, FRitz

RorrKonn
04-07-2004, 04:00 PM
Ya know Messiah was originally for LW,that has Cloth,Caustics etc etc.LW's a poor boys App :)

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

wuensch
04-07-2004, 04:46 PM
RorrKonn--- your comment does not relly make sense to me-- Lightwave is a yery well equipped app, Messiah was originally developed to fill its character-gaps.
Messiah does not have clothes.
Neither has LW, but it has softbodys that collide with deformed characters (something Cinema does not have).
Fritzman:
I would describe Motionbuilder as a motion centered app.
It has a nice and advanced auto-rig, but you set up bones and weights in your main app.
It is very cool in handling Motioncapture data, even large chunks, very easy to compose large Scenes out of Motion clips either Captured or with the control rig, then modify the motions with a unique and really capable Non-Linear Editing called Storymode.

I found it quite Easy to learn, mainly because of the excellent documentation.
It has an Contraint system with nodes that is easy and flexible to handle.

Messiah is a Rigging and Animating program.
Incredible Rigging power, unique approach to separate Mesh and Rig and Animation completely.
Very fast bones and expressions (sadly lousy documentation)
Lots of features, check out the demo.

Botha re very capable for Animating, but they are very different in use, so its imperative to try out both before deciding.
It seems that MB is more for those who want fast results and M:A is for those that want to go hardcore CA.
Olli

sebek27
04-07-2004, 05:33 PM
Lightwave 8 has a enhacements in animation including cloth dynamics ;)

wuensch
04-07-2004, 05:41 PM
But its not out yet:shrug: ---
Lets wait for C4D 9 then, see what they have in store.
I still hope for a Dynamics Update with real time Dynamics and Clothes, then I will find peace--.
Its a pity Maxon is making such a top secret thing out of their roadmap.
On the other hand in the recent past , when implementing a new feature they have always surpassed my expectations(and with Sketch &Toon took me completely by surprise), so-- who knows.
Olli

fritzman
04-07-2004, 06:57 PM
Originally posted by Olli Wuensch
...
Fritzman:
I would describe Motionbuilder as a motion centered app.
It has a nice and advanced auto-rig, but you set up bones and weights in your main app.
It is very cool in handling Motioncapture data, even large chunks, very easy to compose large Scenes out of Motion clips either Captured or with the control rig, then modify the motions with a unique and really capable Non-Linear Editing called Storymode.

I found it quite Easy to learn, mainly because of the excellent documentation.
It has an Contraint system with nodes that is easy and flexible to handle.

Messiah is a Rigging and Animating program.
Incredible Rigging power, unique approach to separate Mesh and Rig and Animation completely.
Very fast bones and expressions (sadly lousy documentation)
Lots of features, check out the demo.

Botha re very capable for Animating, but they are very different in use, so its imperative to try out both before deciding.
It seems that MB is more for those who want fast results and M:A is for those that want to go hardcore CA.
Olli

Thanx a lot, Olli!

I'll check both demoes in depth. I saw cool things in the videos of both apps. :bounce:
Unfortunately I wasn't able to access the kaydara support area for the videos you recommended. :shrug:


All the best, FRitz

wuensch
04-07-2004, 07:22 PM
kaydara released their Motionbuilder 5.5.update today, and I think the server is too busy ;-)
Have not been able to download it yet.
Olli

AdamT
04-07-2004, 07:34 PM
Is't the 5.5 update only for Professional?

draz
04-07-2004, 07:54 PM
They just released it for Standard as well. Took me about 15 minutes to get the link working though.

Per-Anders
04-07-2004, 07:59 PM
Originally posted by anobrin
Pardon me but without collapsable tracks that allow you to see EVERY channel
and select and move groups of key frames at will
for any channel or scene element, it is NOT
a Dopesheet no matter what one may wish to call it. :blush:

well in that case it's a dopesheet by your own standards asside from the collapsable tracks. cos that's exactly what it does. i.e. it shows you ALL subchannels, and allows you to move groups of key frames at will for any channel of scene element.

i'm still not sure where you get the idea that it can't do that from.

i do like the articulated bounding box idea, however... cinema can do that. poser models are built in parts, so each bounding box surrounds a seperate part of the mesh as far as i remember. in cinema just make a mesh in the same manner, and switch to box, or shaded box view. if you have a single mesh then you can simply hide the mesh and work with the bones themselves, or work in isoparm, wire, or skeleton viewports modes.

wuensch
04-07-2004, 08:06 PM
--or you can simply attach a NullObject with CubeShow modus or a real cube to the bones (via expresso and the LinkList Operator it is only a small expression) and hide allothers from the Viewer.

Olli

thorn3d
04-07-2004, 08:11 PM
Originally posted by Olli Wuensch
Character Studio used to be a Plug-In for Max , as well as Reactor until Discreet bought them and integrated them.

Character Studio still is a plug-in; it isn't "integrated" in terms or being included in max.

FWIW, I don't use it. Seems like a nice idea, but too many people speak ill about it.

thorn

RorrKonn
04-07-2004, 11:26 PM
Did not mean to confuse anyone.
LW's 7 Manuel chapter 18.uses the terms soft body dynamics,cloth,mdcloth.is where I got Cloth from.
3D Terminology gets confusing across App's.
Think every 3D App's definition of Nurbs,Spline our deferent.
All app's gets what cloth does,
All app's soft body dynamics definition might defer.
Did not mean for it to sound like Messiah had cloth.
meant the stock App LW 7 had cloth or soft body dynamics that inmates cloth like effects.

I am sorta new to C4D and have not learned every thing all that well yet.but I don't have any problems with stock C4D IK's but then again I had not problems Rigging a Character in TrueSpace 4.
TS,LW,C4D IK's seem a lot alike to me.if ya can rig in one then ya can rig in the other.
a lot of little plugs around to help to.
big plugs like MOCCO.Messiah,BVH,Kaydra, our fun to.

Does Maya Complete have all the IK's or do ya need Unlimited ?
Working on getting a larger income just haven't gotten there yet.

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

AdamT
04-08-2004, 12:32 AM
I had not problems Rigging a Character in TrueSpace 4.
Pwaha! Let's not go crazy here. :surprised

RorrKonn
04-08-2004, 01:10 AM
No one every believes me.but Chris, Opie and me really could rig Characters in ts4.

Spencer won the TS Big Break Animation Contest with the AVI Bomastic
http://www.velocity3d.com/
This was done buy Spencer in I think TS6 with
MS. http://www.pixelfu.com/MotionStudio/

But this does prove I'm not crazy when I say ya can animate Characters in TS.

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

AdamT
04-08-2004, 02:14 AM
Originally posted by RorrKonn
No one every believes me.but Chris, Opie and me really could rig Characters in ts4.

Spencer won the TS Big Break Animation Contest with the AVI Bomastic
http://www.velocity3d.com/
This was done buy Spencer in I think TS6 with
MS. http://www.pixelfu.com/MotionStudio/

But this does prove I'm not crazy when I say ya can animate Characters in TS.

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com
Well, he used Motion Studio which is a big step up from TS4. :)

Spencer is the only one I know of who was able to do half decent CA with TS4, and even then it was only half decent. I'm not slamming tS users--it's just that with tS' one-nail system and total lack of constraints, quality CA is well nigh impossible. And add to that the fact that it crashes twice an hour (on a good day)....

RorrKonn
04-08-2004, 04:02 AM
Spencer is the only one I know of who was able to do half decent CA with TS4, and even then it was only half decent. I'm not slamming tS users--it's just that with tS' one-nail system and total lack of constraints, quality CA is well nigh impossible. And add to that the fact that it crashes twice an hour (on a good day)....


I understand completely,That's why I am here Multiple ANCHORS :bounce:

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

cookepuss
04-08-2004, 04:52 AM
RorrKonn: I'm going to speak to you as a longtime former trueSpace user. Having owned just about every version since 1.0, I can honestly say that trueSpace was never good at animation. To even remotely get tS near baseline standards, I had to spend tons of money on plugins. All of those plugin icons everywhere, each with different wacky implementations, totally messed up any chance at a decent workflow.

Even with MoStu and the aniPak, tS has been a rather pathetic animation app. I do understand that 6.5 and 6.6 made some "strides" in that department, but tS still remains a more than weak where animation is concerned. The animation tools are just mind numbingly obtuse and bargain basement. Compare it to anything outside of the mid-range app selection and you'll see what I mean.

In part, I abandoned trueSpace because of this. I also abandoned it because of the major bugginess and the UNDON'T "feature". That's another story. Don't get me wrong. trueSpace is an excellent modeler, especially at such a low price. Where animation is concerned, it has always been a joke, with a punchline only Caligari could laugh at.

At this point, bubblegum and duct tape are probably the only things keeping that code core together. The program has stagnated over the years, crumbling under the weight of its own design.

To even mention tS' animation tools in the same breath as LW, C4D, or Maya's is pretty absurd. When it comes down to it, there's just no comparison.

You can animate characters with trueSpace, but why should you? Even more, why would you? That's like saying that you could survive a jump down Niagra falls. Sure you could. You're just more likely to break your neck trying. You'd really have to be a masochistic SOB to even try.

AdamT
04-08-2004, 05:32 AM
Originally posted by cookepuss
RorrKonn:You can animate characters with trueSpace, but why should you? Even more, why would you? That's like saying that you could survive a jump down Niagra falls. Sure you could. You're just more likely to break your neck trying. You'd really have to be a masochistic SOB to even try.
Well yeah, I was trying to be a tiny bit diplomatic but that's it in a nutshell.

cookepuss
04-08-2004, 05:44 AM
Di...plo...matic? Hmm... Such a foreign concept. :) Still, it's as close to the truth as you'll probably get. I speak from experience, having lived on both sides of the fence. Most tSers can't see the forrest, much less the trees. At least that's my opinion. To be a tSer is to be a rabidly loyal fan of a king that never was. I've been there. I know.

AdamT
04-08-2004, 06:29 AM
Originally posted by cookepuss
Di...plo...matic? Hmm... Such a foreign concept. :) Still, it's as close to the truth as you'll probably get. I speak from experience, having lived on both sides of the fence. Most tSers can't see the forrest, much less the trees. At least that's my opinion. To be a tSer is to be a rabidly loyal fan of a king that never was. I've been there. I know.
You are definitely preaching to the choir, Sir. :wavey: I used tS from versions 1 to 5.1 and am well acquainted with the community--from which I was unceremoniously banished on several occasions. I even had lunch with the "king" a few years ago at Siggraph.

wuensch
04-08-2004, 10:34 AM
RonKorr,
since we are talking about characters,
LW has Softbodys that collide.
They might call it cloth, because it is possible to do a bedsheet on a line waving in the wind (like Cinema Dynamics) but it is not a clothes simulation.
Dont know about LW8, but its not out yet, so lets wait.
LWs Motiondesigner is superior to Cinema Softbodys, but clothes on Characters will always look like slippery silk.
A real cloth simulation (for characters) should imitate the behaviour of real clothes, with stitches and such.
As far as I know only Maya (unlimited) and a couple of PlugIns for Max (not sure about XSI, no experience there) can do that.
In the meantime, for Cinema it would be nice to have SB collide properly with characters to be able to do skirts at least without a complex setup with expresso and a lot of bones (in Messiah they used to have the same shortcoming in M:A3, too, not sure about M:A4).
The software companies sometimes are very loose with definitions for marketing purposes, (as with Nurbs in Cinema, which are no Nurbs but its sounds good).
But to add clothes to a feature list when all you can do is wave a hankerchief in the wind does not really do the customer a favor.
Olli

wuensch
04-08-2004, 10:34 AM
oh, I forgot Poser 5, which has clothes.
Olli

RorrKonn
04-08-2004, 02:22 PM
AdamT,Cookepuss
I was just talking,Did not mean to imply any one should use a certain App.

Olli
Will pay closer attention to App's and there definition of Cloth from now on.

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

anobrin
04-09-2004, 02:03 PM
Originally posted by Olli Wuensch
RonKorr,
since we are talking about characters,
LW has Softbodys that collide.
They might call it cloth, because it is possible to do a bedsheet on a line waving in the wind (like Cinema Dynamics) but it is not a clothes simulation.
Dont know about LW8, but its not out yet, so lets wait.
LWs Motiondesigner is superior to Cinema Softbodys, but clothes on Characters will always look like slippery silk.
A real cloth simulation (for characters) should imitate the behaviour of real clothes, with stitches and such.
Olli

Lightwave 7.5's "motion designer"actually does
Clothing simulation quite well but Lightwave-8 will have
a much better integrated clothing simulator

http://www.dstorm.co.jp/DS_Plug/md2/movie/watari.mpg

http://www.dstorm.co.jp/DS_Plug/md2/movie/c4b.mpg

wuensch
04-09-2004, 02:33 PM
looks good, but both examples are not really showing if it is top notch cloth simulation, both could be achieved with softbodys that collide well.
(I wish this would even remotely be possible in Cinema, though, so its no bashing)
(I am thinking of the tipical behaviour of clothes with seams and such, Like Maya cloth or the sybex simulation).
Very curious what it will be like when LW 8 is out.
Looks promising.

Olli

RorrKonn
04-09-2004, 05:34 PM
Very curious what it will be like when LW 8 is out.

Ya we have been wondering about LW 8 our self's for years now.

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

ThirdEye
04-09-2004, 07:17 PM
Originally posted by anobrin
Lightwave 7.5's "motion designer"actually does
Clothing simulation quite well but Lightwave-8 will have
a much better integrated clothing simulator

http://www.dstorm.co.jp/DS_Plug/md2/movie/watari.mpg

http://www.dstorm.co.jp/DS_Plug/md2/movie/c4b.mpg


Better than nothing for sure, but not really impressive imho. Nowhere close to Syflex (which costs a fortune, i'll give you that)

LucentDreams
04-09-2004, 08:59 PM
Motion Designer is better then nothing, for cloth dynamics I'd say its better then our own dynamics, but its not cloth dynamics by any means. It acts like plain ol softbodies looks like plain old softbodies and neither of those examples look like materials people actually wear, unless the starch is just starting to soften on the short skirt in the second example. :)

wuensch
04-09-2004, 09:34 PM
Syflex, thats what I meant---no wonder i could not find the website ;-)
yeah, its a little out of any reasionable pricerange.

Olli

danb
04-09-2004, 09:37 PM
I emailed Syflex a few months ago asking if they had any plans to make a plugin for Cinema4d and they replied not at the moment but stay tuned.

Oh well, Maybe if we all send emails to them they will make a plug for us.:shrug:

thorn3d
04-09-2004, 10:00 PM
Syflex is $2200 per seat; do you really think if "everyone" emailed them, that everyone would be purchasing it? just a thought before people start the mass emailing. ;)

thorn

marioucci
04-10-2004, 01:46 AM
"but I felt the XSI review was not coming from a professional XSI user. Too much LW comparison and why it didn't stack up to LW in some areas, rather biased review. He was also wrong in 3 of his weakness comments about XSI, which was a red flag for me. It would have been better that an actual XSI professional was asked these questions, which brings me to my point, which is you need to look at more reviews and opinions as one articles won't give a clear review of a product(s), "

TJNYC,

Thats quite an statment bout me... anyways, thats ur oppinion.. and giving your oppinion is a very hard thing to do isnt it??
I got some emails from ppl colplaining about my nitpicking list of weaknesses XSI might have... i am aware that my bad points list was the biggest one on that article.... well, i pasted it in here just to see what are the 3 wrong points i wrote. Also, be sure not to mention any scripts or addons since the article didnt cover that but XSI out-of-the-box only. Im gonna make comments over my article now to make it even clearer.

Also.. of course i talked about lightwave, if you knew me just a bit(u should before talkin about me) you d know that i came from Lightwave to XSI and i dont like to compare softwares that i dont know about.


"Some nitpicking:

Shadow colors are an objects property and you have no shadow colors option in the light menu. It makes the adding colors to shadows a bit laborious. - TRUE you dont have a select shadow collor buttom

When modeling in sub- D you cant pick the point directly on the mesh, instead you have to look for the projected point. This is annoying as well. TRUE - you cant do that.

When creating morphs, you have extra work to create a custom slider box, differently of Lightwave that have it done for you automatically. TRUE - you dont have your morphs in a slider box separated by categories, instead u have a huge list with all your shapes, doesnt matter if its a feet morph or a nose one.

Deformers like bend, taper, etc are a bit hard to make work properly. TRUE - try those in other softwares and then in XSI and ull understand what i mean.

Procedural textures are limited and not as straightforward as in other applications. TRUE - i can quote at least a dozen guys that are much happier using darktree with xsi because of that.

Lighting workflow has no visual falloffs enough to make the process easy and intuitive. TRUE - you can use some scripts but xsi doesnt give ya that from the box.

Anisotropic effect only works fine and right away in NURBS surfaces TRUE - we have a script or addon that does that now..


After that i tell ya that XSI is the best software for me.. i wouldnt change it for any other. My list was big because i want to see it get better. thats all.

I hope we got it straight now.

cheers

Loggie

MJV
04-10-2004, 02:12 AM
Originally posted by loganarts

"Some nitpicking:

Shadow colors are an objects property and you have no shadow colors option in the light menu. It makes the adding colors to shadows a bit laborious. - TRUE you dont have a select shadow collor buttom

When modeling in sub- D you cant pick the point directly on the mesh, instead you have to look for the projected point. This is annoying as well. TRUE - you cant do that.

When creating morphs, you have extra work to create a custom slider box, differently of Lightwave that have it done for you automatically. TRUE - you dont have your morphs in a slider box separated by categories, instead u have a huge list with all your shapes, doesnt matter if its a feet morph or a nose one.

Deformers like bend, taper, etc are a bit hard to make work properly. TRUE - try those in other softwares and then in XSI and ull understand what i mean.

Procedural textures are limited and not as straightforward as in other applications. TRUE - i can quote at least a dozen guys that are much happier using darktree with xsi because of that.

Lighting workflow has no visual falloffs enough to make the process easy and intuitive. TRUE - you can use some scripts but xsi doesnt give ya that from the box.

Anisotropic effect only works fine and right away in NURBS surfaces TRUE - we have a script or addon that does that now..


After that i tell ya that XSI is the best software for me.. i wouldnt change it for any other. My list was big because i want to see it get better. thats all.
Loggie

Shadow color should be the property of the object and not the light, imo. Aside from that, what is it about XSI that you do like? Considering your list of problems, what's good about it?

marioucci
04-10-2004, 02:43 AM
Hey MJV,

prepare ur self for it:)


1 - straightforward interface
2 - modelling tools combining the best of several different apps making it a pleasure to be used.
3 - Isner's spine
4 - render tree easy to use and powerfull.
5 - Texture projections and the subprojections options under texture editor
6 - best fit option in the subprojections
7 - "q" render region tool and all render region options such as track selection etc.
8 - The way the passes are organized and available.. couldnt be easier
9 - customized rigs
10 - biped guide
11 - F3 :)
12 - shave and haircut's select tip and make curly hair moving the mouse:)
13 - Reference objects
14 - the power of constrains
15 - the middle mouse - repeat last command feature
16 - the hability to model in low poly while watching the smoothed subdivivded object in the other view
17 - the amazing open gl that allows me to have millions of polys onscreen and laugh at it while modelling
18 - i love how easy it is to create cloth and have nice results with it.
19 - the dopesheet and its functions
20 - the enveloping process
21 - the weight tool
22 - in render tree, the math functions and the hability to preview almost any node just by plugging it into surface and rendering region.
23 - the FX tree facility
and finally, the way it allowed me to give 100 % of what i can differently of other apps i used before.

Anyways, it was great to write about xsi and i tried to be informal and inpartial..... i didnt see it as a marketing ooportunitty to XSI but instead just talked about the tool i use everyday at work....

cheers

Loggie

ThirdEye
04-10-2004, 12:29 PM
Hi Mario, nice list, but lemme add something :)

1 - straightforward interface

the interface of XSI is almost flawless but it's nowhere as customizable as C4D's for example. The basic one is awesome, but the customizability isn't top notch.

2 - modelling tools combining the best of several different apps making it a pleasure to be used.

That's the thing i hate most about XSI: modeling. Totally ppg-centric, sliders based, limited interactivity, clunky tools. I'd rather prefer modeling in Wings3D. "De gustibus non disputandum est" ;)

4 - render tree easy to use and powerfull.

The problem of XSI's rendertree is you're FORCED to use it, texturing becomes a bit complicated sometimes. In Maya, unlike in XSI, you ALWAYS have 3 levels: the standard one, trees and scripting.

5 - Texture projections and the subprojections options under texture editor

cool

6 - best fit option in the subprojections

too bad XSI doesn't have the cubic projection yet :D

7 - "q" render region tool and all render region options such as track selection etc.

the render region is very cool, it's like C4D's but it starts rendering automatically when you make some changes. The problem, unlike in C4D, is you can't have more than one region

8 - The way the passes are organized and available.. couldnt be easier

it depends, they're great if you have XSI advanced so you can use them in the fx tree, they're not so great if you're using essentials.

12 - shave and haircut's select tip and make curly hair moving the mouse:)

simply the best hair simulator on the market, kudos to Softimage for that

14 - the power of constrains

still it's not got a tree for that like C4D or Maya.

15 - the middle mouse - repeat last command feature

very handy

16 - the hability to model in low poly while watching the smoothed subdivivded object in the other view

there's a workaround for that in C4D, but yes, it's great, one of the 1st things on my wishlist

17 - the amazing open gl that allows me to have millions of polys onscreen and laugh at it while modelling

it's more or less on par with C4D's, C4D and XSI are the best at that

18 - i love how easy it is to create cloth and have nice results with it.

yeah, this is something we still miss in C4D

23 - the FX tree facility

"let there be light". Probably the XSI feature i like most.

marioucci
04-10-2004, 12:46 PM
Heyas Third,

Its not fair man!!! we are in the C4D forum LOL....
I never used C4D but from what u said it is a software that matches XSI in several aspects....
We should start a C4D vc XSI thread then eh?
I have, of course, a reply for ur reply but then this is gonna be endless.... should i go on anyways?? let me know.

cheers

Loggie

RorrKonn
04-10-2004, 01:49 PM
I'm a little lost here.

At the Soft image store.
http://store.softimage.com/store/tek9.asp
there is a
Soft image 4 Base $1500
Soft image 4 Extreme $2500
So I don't know if ya mean
advanced is same as Extreme
& essentials is same as Base ?
or I am just not seeing essentials,advanced ?

1n 1998 wasn't soft $10,000 or $20,000 ?
So I am thicken I am missing some thing here.

I Currently run Poser,TS,LW,C4D,Body Paint.Do not have MOCCO.

Would like to have some better Character Animation App's.
Not sure which way to go.
Messiah,Kaydra,MOCCO.along with LW,C4D seems pretty cool way to go.

If Soft,Maya,Houdini would do all that Messiah,Kaydra,Mocco would do all in one App would be a neater way to go,I reckon.
But if I can get it all for $3000 not sure why I should spend $1000's more.unless it is a lot better.
Don't know how Soft,Maya,Houdini deals with duel processors, render PC's or adding another rendering PC or anything.

But since we our debating about such things thought I would ask :)

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

AdamT
04-10-2004, 03:39 PM
Softimage is not that same as XSI, although both are made by the same company. The former is older software that's still available at lower prices. The latter is expensive but has recently come down quite a bit with a competitive upgrade offer.

flingster
04-10-2004, 04:05 PM
can someone explain the whole maintenance angle xsi users are charged....seems evil to me...but then i guess it depends on the scale of your endeavour.
enterprise people want enterprise support and are willing to pay for it...
:shrug:

cookepuss
04-10-2004, 04:15 PM
Originally posted by RorrKonn
Would like to have some better Character Animation App's.
Not sure which way to go.
Messiah,Kaydra,MOCCO.along with LW,C4D seems pretty cool way to go.
True. Just remember that no program will make you a good modeler or animator. Only skill and lots of practice will do that.

If Soft,Maya,Houdini would do all that Messiah,Kaydra,Mocco would do all in one App would be a neater way to go,I reckon.

One clarification here. MOCCA is a module. Like any other C4D module, once installed, it becomes a seamless part of the app. That is very much unlike Messiah or Motion Builder, which are still separate applications.

BazC
04-10-2004, 05:36 PM
Originally posted by ThirdEye

16 - the hability to model in low poly while watching the smoothed subdivivded object in the other view

there's a workaround for that in C4D

Really? Could you explain how? Thanks in advance ! :o) - Baz

wuensch
04-10-2004, 06:15 PM
Make an instance of the cage, put it into a HN, model the cage with its own HN switched off.
Olli

RorrKonn
04-10-2004, 08:32 PM
Softimage is not that same as XSI, although both are made by the same company. The former is older software that's still available at lower prices. The latter is expensive but has recently come down quite a bit with a competitive upgrade offer.

Apparently Soft never tells the price of XSI only could find a list of resellers.

Soft image 4 Base $1500
Soft image 4 Extreme $2500
Well there be a Soft image Base,Extreme 5 ?
or they no longer support Base,Extreme and our now only working on improving XSI ?

I'm looking at this like
Soft image 4 Base would be something like LW.
Soft image 4 Extreme would be something like C4D
and XSI would be something like Maya Unlimited.
If I am looking at this wrong fell free to correct me.

XSI essentials $ ???
XI advanced $ ???
Any one care to tell RorrKonn the $$$ of XSI essentials, XSI advanced ?

can someone explain the whole maintenance angle xsi users are charged....seems evil to me...but then i guess it depends on the scale of your endeavour.

Max, Maya has them too always wonder about stuff like that my self.
Wonder about if it's cool to get a new PC also.and renderfarm PC's.

In all Reality I am nothing more then a hobbyist that gets paid from time to time with freelance work.
So plain and simple works best for me.

True. Just remember that no program will make you a good modeler or animator. Only skill and lots of practice will do that.

I agree 100%.
But if the Med range app's tault me nothing else about animation.
They tault me.
Never hurts to have the best animation tools $$$ can buy thou.:twisted:

I just put MOCCO in with the other Animation plug. Messiah,Kaydra even thou it's a Mod and not a plug.
which I should not have.I will attempt to make clearer post from now on. :deal:

---

I am still trying to understand why one App cost $1000 and another cost $10,000
I take it if I got Maya Unlimited,XSI,Houdini
they would have tools built in them to = Messiah,Kaydra
So ya would not need to get Messiah,Kaydra as a plug right ?

I only know the price of Maya Unlimited so I will use it for this sample.
Maya Unlimited $6000
C4D$600,Mocco$600,Messiah$400,kaydra$1000.=$2600
$6000 to $2600 that's a big deference.
There ant but so many tools ya need to make a Character walk across the floor,even Poser can do it.
So the $3400 deference is
so ya can do it faster to meet ya dead line.
easier so if ya have a employ that just an that great with IK's these will help make him look better.
Ya do cloth and skin a lot better.
better at robots.
If i am wrong about this,correct me.

I know some people have a real hard time with IK's but I get along with them OK.
I do have some robots that I am still not sure abut how to rig.
I have a hard time with UV's so it was well worth me getting BodyPaint2. :love:

This thread is Educational :thumbsup:

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com
-

fritzman
04-10-2004, 09:03 PM
Hi RorrKonn,

I think you're having there some odd info. I'm not sure if you incidently write MOCCO and Kaydra and such but your price info is very interesting. Mocca costs $495 at Maxons webshop.
What is really interesting to me where you saw Messiah for $400??? That sounds like a cool deal to me as projectmessiah.com wants $595 for it.


All the best, FRitz

BazC
04-10-2004, 09:23 PM
Thanks Olli!

CosmicBear
04-10-2004, 10:24 PM
Originally posted by RorrKonn
There ant but so many tools ya need to make a Character walk across the floor,even Poser can do it.

that might be true when it comes to having a char walking across the floor. but how often does it end right there? and how often does the same character need to pick up something, interact with the enviroment or/and other characters and - if you are really lucky - need to talk and have some emotional expressions in his act.

the discussion was here before, but there are definitly better animation-tools than mocca...

when you deal with CA-animation on a daily basis i doubt that having to deal with lots of different software-packages makes life easier.

fritzman
04-10-2004, 10:50 PM
Hi there,

these statements are straight from Maxons website:

" MOCCA - Character Rigging

The cornerstone of fast and effective character animation is a well-designed skeleton rig, and Mocca provides essential tools to help you create a rig that's ready to move.

Make no bones about it - Mocca is invaluable when creating character rigs.

MOCCA - Soft IK

With Mocca you'll be surprised how easy it is to make characters dance and clients smile."


I never experienced it like that. Must be me. :thumbsup:

En contraire Bonderland does what I want to. I'm still learning it but after a few hours I'm miles ahead of anything I was able to do with Mocca using SoftIK.
Well... :rolleyes: :wavey:


Best wishes, FRitz

thorn3d
04-10-2004, 11:30 PM
Originally posted by fritzman
"Mocca provides essential tools to help you create a rig that's ready to move."

Unfortunately, getting the rig to STOP moving is another matter. ;)

thorn

MJV
04-10-2004, 11:50 PM
Originally posted by thorn3d
Unfortunately, getting the rig to STOP moving is another matter. ;)

thorn

Actually, that's not true. I have created what I consider to be a nearly perfect rig from SIK. I'm quite proud of it and I'd just as soon animate with it as any rig anywhere. It performs almost flawlessly and is very stable, but also has a little bounce and character that is hard to achieve with IK/FK alone. There's just one little problem. Even in five years from now there still won't be a computer anywhere on earth fast enough to use it effectively. But I'm going to hang on to it because in twenty years, it should work great.

RorrKonn
04-10-2004, 11:53 PM
Fritzman,
MOCCO $500+Zygoye$200 =$700 - $100 off for already haven C4D,BP2 = $600 :)

Messiah.
here's one used for $225
http://www.cgtalk.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=136861

Always some one selling some thing, seen LW 7 for $500 more then once.
thought of buying one of the used version for the Soft special deal.cause soft wants ya other App.but I wouldn't give up any of my App's I:love:them all.
Messiah originally started as a LW plug,I think.

Is there a English version of En contraire Bonderland ?
have hard enough time with English ,French can't read.

CosmicBear,ah, good point.
I am starting to think walking across the floor is all I can afford for now.

RorrKonn
http://www.Atomic-3D.com

fritzman
04-11-2004, 12:32 AM
Hi RorrKonn,

"En Contraire" means "in contrast".
Bonderland works for me. Moccas SoftIK not. :scream:

That Messiah for $225 is not a really cool deal as the upgrade to 4.0 costs $249. Add the shipping and you're nearly at the normal price for Messiah 4.0 which AFAIK is needed for stable C4D im/export.


Best wishes, FRitz

AdamT
04-11-2004, 12:36 AM
Regarding the price of Messiah, if you're interested you should subscribe to the pmg newsgroup. If you're a little patient you can pick up a copy of M:A or Messiah Studio for substantially less than pmg's asking price. Looks like Studio licenses (not M:A) are going for around $600 these days.

fritzman
04-11-2004, 12:54 AM
Thanx Adam. I'll check that. :)


Best wishes, FRitz

AdamT
04-11-2004, 05:45 AM
No problem. As a matter of fact someone just listed this today: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3671397696&ssPageName=ADME:B:LC:US:1

thorn3d
04-11-2004, 06:50 AM
Dude...

It's MOCCA.

Not MOCCO.

M-O-C-C-A.

Cheers,

thorn

ThirdEye
04-11-2004, 11:38 AM
Originally posted by loganarts
Heyas Third,

Its not fair man!!! we are in the C4D forum LOL....
I never used C4D but from what u said it is a software that matches XSI in several aspects....
We should start a C4D vc XSI thread then eh?
I have, of course, a reply for ur reply but then this is gonna be endless.... should i go on anyways?? let me know.

cheers

Loggie


Hi Mario :)

I don't think we could start an XSI vs C4D thread, there's still a big difference between the two programs for both price and features. Modeling in C4D MAY have a better workflow but it doesn't have the tools and the full history of XSI. Texturing... C4D has an internal 3D painter (Bodypaint) and some good texturing/UV tools but XSI on the other hand has a nodebased rendertree. Animation isn't even comparable, XSI wins hands down. Rendering... Let's just say Mental Ray is better for huge scenes and C4D wins when the poly counts isn't too high. Comparison done. ;)

Feel free to reply to my previous post, don't worry :)

Ciao

ThirdEye
04-11-2004, 11:46 AM
Originally posted by RorrKonn
MOCCO

Mocco the clown-o?

fritzman
04-11-2004, 12:24 PM
Originally posted by AdamT
No problem. As a matter of fact someone just listed this today: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=3671397696&ssPageName=ADME:B:LC:US:1


Thanx Adam,

The only problem is the price again.
$300 + 249 for the 4.0 update = $549 + shipping to germany.
Original price = $595 with free shipping.

Yes, I saw there are 2 DVDs included...


All the best, FRitz

fritzman
04-11-2004, 03:34 PM
Originally posted by Olli Wuensch
Make an instance of the cage, put it into a HN, model the cage with its own HN switched off.
Olli

Thanx Olli,

so obvious but I never thought about it. Very useful. :thumbsup:


Best wishes, FRitz

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