PDA

View Full Version : Why is 3D Max so expensive to purchase?


HellBoy
10-31-2004, 07:06 PM
Hi guys

can you tell me why is it so expensive, I mean so high price to buy 3D max, its only a software right. If I wanted to buy 3D Max 7 from where I live which is UK it would've costs me 2,695.00 / 3,260.95 incl. VAT. Plus the regular license.
Discuss

plastic
10-31-2004, 07:44 PM
"its only a software right"

what do you mean "it's only software right"
you're one of the people who think windows is cheaper than linux because you only need 1 cd-r for it?
in a few years hardware will be almost free and you will pay for software subscriptions and services.

Stimpy
10-31-2004, 08:05 PM
discuss what ?

people should be happy about the prices of todays 3d software since only a couple of years back it used to be about 4 to 5 times as much. not to mention the hardware you needed to run it. a simple gaming card wouldnt do back then.

marktsang
10-31-2004, 08:11 PM
its so expensive because it isn't a toy that you mess about with for a weekend its a professional 3d animation package. not that its "that expensive" - i paid for mine by working in an electronics factory(typical monkey job) for 9 weeks .. yes thats right only 9 weeks. so when you think about it, its not that expensive.
mark

Ryan-B
10-31-2004, 08:36 PM
I think MWarsame is comparing the price relative to other 3D software packages.

If you want a less expensive package, take a look at Softimage XSI Foundation. It's only $495 US.

HellBoy
10-31-2004, 08:38 PM
dont get me wrong guys, what I meant was is it so expensive because companies developed stuff with 3D max and they earned fortune so max developers though hay why not make it expensive? :)

ok Im making it sound like it used to be cheaper before but was it?

sorry about the word discuss, that intented for another posti in different forum and somehow it slipped over here :)

Dispraiser
10-31-2004, 08:38 PM
Not sure on this, as I'm not a big fan of Maya, but isn't it about 7000 USD?

Also, if you want to get 3ds Max cheap and are a student K-12 or College, go to DIscreet and thumb through their student resellers. You can get a 1 year version of it for only 120 USD.

HellBoy
10-31-2004, 08:41 PM
You can get a 1 year version of it for only 120 USD.
$120 are joking? :) is it really that much, but that is in US right, if it is on UK I'll buy it right away on this week.

I think MWarsame is comparing the price relative to other 3D software packages.

If you want a less expensive package, take a look at Softimage XSI Foundation. It's only $495 US.
oh no, oh yes:) when I bough truespace 6.5 it was around I think 299 and then I bough Gamespace and wahay I wanted to buy Max for around 500 which I though that is how much is cost but you know... almost 3000 :( thats why I started the topic

Supervlieg
10-31-2004, 08:58 PM
Why is a car expensive? Its because a lot of work goes into making those things.

Same goes for software. And it isnt meant for a broad demographic. Its a program used by people that make money with it. When you work professionally with that program you probably earn the money it cost you back in the first of at least the second project you do with it. So when you look at it that way its actually very cheap. Lots of equipment used in factories take year before turning into a profit.

Zack Attack
10-31-2004, 09:16 PM
What is the difference between a regular licence and a educational one what purpose do they serve.

Daniel-B
10-31-2004, 09:24 PM
Ryan B, your avatar is creepy, dude.

Signal2Noise
10-31-2004, 09:44 PM
What is the difference between a regular licence and a educational one what purpose do they serve.
In a nutshell:

A "regular" license is a.k.a. a commercial license. This means that the user can use the software for a business and make money with the output from it (pending quality of course! ;) ).

An educational license is just that. For educational purposes only. Usually these educational versions are only available to qualified students. These licenses are offered at a cheaper price point so students can reasonably afford the package in order to use it in a learning capacity. Educational licenses are fully functional applications with the only limitation being that the software cannot be used in a commercial (i.e. money-making) venture.

Another alternative are demos or "personal learning editions" which can also be used as an educational tool. The difference here is they're predominantly free but also contain limitations in the software themselves (i.e. render output, save disabled, watermarks, etc.) in addition to being designed for non-commercial use.

Spankspeople
10-31-2004, 09:50 PM
Keep in mind that this is not software that is expected to sell millions upon millions of units, unlike a game, or a word processor. With a much smaller customer base, they have to adjust the price upwards just so that they can make enough money to cover the costs of develloping the software in the first place.

Zack Attack
10-31-2004, 09:56 PM
In a nutshell:

A "regular" license is a.k.a. a commercial license. This means that the user can use the software for a business and make money with the output from it (pending quality of course! ;) ).

An educational license is just that. For educational purposes only. Usually these educational versions are only available to qualified students. These licenses are offered at a cheaper price point so students can reasonably afford the package in order to use it in a learning capacity. Educational licenses are fully functional applications with the only limitation being that the software cannot be used in a commercial (i.e. money-making) venture.

Another alternative are demos or "personal learning editions" which can also be used as an educational tool. The difference here is they're predominantly free but also contain limitations in the software themselves (i.e. render output, save disabled, watermarks, etc.) in addition to being designed for non-commercial use.
But i can like still print them and show people and stuff right on a education of course.

Bobo
10-31-2004, 10:03 PM
Hi guys

can you tell me why is it so expensive, I mean so high price to buy 3D max, its only a software right. If I wanted to buy 3D Max 7 from where I live which is UK it would've costs me 2,695.00 / 3,260.95 incl. VAT. Plus the regular license.
Discuss
It is a historical thing, and a relative one.

3D Studio DOS, the predecessor of Max, kept the same price, slightly below $3K, from 1990 to 1995. In those days, the only other affordable package that would run on a PC was Lightwave 3D. Everything else (Softimage 3D, Alias Power Animator, Wavefront Advanced Visualizer, Prisms, you name it) was running on expensive Silicon Graphics hardware and the price was uncomparably higher (somewhere between 10 and 20 times?)

In 1995, when 3D Studio MAX was announced, its price was set at $3495. Here is the original press release from November 1995:

----------------------------------------------------
Autodesk Announces 3D Studio MAX Pricing and Migration Program

What: Autodesk Multimedia Market Group, the worldwide leader in
PC-based multimedia tools, today announced that 3D Studio MAX will be
available for a suggested retail price of US$3,495. Scheduled to ship
in calendar year Q1 1996, 3D Studio MAX is the first professional 3D
animation software completely designed to take advantage of the
Windows NT platform.

Autodesk also announced a migration program for 3D Studio Release 4
customers. Between now and the end of Q1 1996, new and existing 3D
Studio Release 4 customers can order 3D Studio MAX for a special
half-off migration price of US$495. This means that 3D Studio R4
customers who take advantage of this offer will be able to own both 3D
Studio R4 and 3D Studio MAX for less than the suggested retail price
of 3D Studio MAX alone. After March 31, 1996, the migration price to
3D Studio MAX will be US$995.

"This is a turning point in the price/performance continuum," said Bob
Bennett, senior product manager for Autodesk's 3D Studio MAX. "It
used to be that performance was linked to price. But now with MAX's
great price and the power of its Windows NT architecture, you get the
performance of a high-priced workstation software on an inexpensive
PC.
--------------------------------------------

Some funny 3D world trivia - Bob Bennett became later Maya product manager.
Maya's product manager Chris Ford is currently Discreet's Animation Group product manager (which includes 3ds max).


Anyway, the price of 3ds max has not changed in 9 years. Just everybody else became cheaper, trying to get down from the high-end effects
into the larger "consumer 3D" market, incl. games, web etc.
3D software is a business, and a price war is going on... Most people using 3ds max professionally will tell you that
it pays back in less than a single job. While the customer would prefer a lower price, it would mean less money for the company and probably less R&D for future releases.
(The real trick is to work for a company that would buy the licenses for you ;))

Hope this helps.

kex
10-31-2004, 10:32 PM
this whole thing ends up cycling around the whole uk pricing scheme dolars v pounds

3000 dolars would be fine but 3000 pounds is a lot more and most people just feel ripped off .

thats your answer

fxgogo
10-31-2004, 11:57 PM
I can understand you question in the light of the other companies dropping their prices. I do think Discreet will eventually have to follow suite. They do have a huge user base that will be hard pressed to change their pipeline, but I would not rely on that to stay permanent. It is quite funny when you look at the history of Max. When I started using it way back in the 3D Studio Release 4 days, it was seen as a poor cousin to the likes of Softimage 3D and Power Animator. But as time has gone on, and when Autodesk bought Discreet and aligned Max with the flame side of the business, Max has moved up in the perception stakes. And along with that rise it has become more like the big boys in the way it presents itself (more marketing fluff and snobbery in my biased opinion), which is quite ironic considering that the old 'big boys' are moving down the food chain to ensure their survival.

But to answer your question, they are so expensive cause they can charge that and people will pay for it. I must say its toolset has matured well and with 7, they have finally made sure the core program has a strong CA toolset. I do think it is due for a rewrite however.

JBruckner
11-01-2004, 03:53 AM
My take on it this:
Consider who uses 3D products, movies, games, entertainment, etc. They are making TONS of money off the product that these programs produce. Also take into account how often studios upgrade thier software, then think about how much development costs.

It all works out in the end.

dotTom
11-01-2004, 05:04 AM
'Max is so expensive because this is what the market will currently tolerate. There are zillions of jobs advertised for 'Max skilled folks so by and large its a self fulfulling prophesy. Discreet has no reason to lower the price until the majority of their sales start being down to licence renewals only, i.e. they're not attracting new users.

I think the advice above is solid. If you need 'Max because you want a 'Max job then either get a demo version or enrole with a college so you can apply for educational pricing. Otherwise choose another app that's cheaper and buy 'Max if you still want it when you've got the money.

tazy7
11-01-2004, 01:20 PM
tbh honest with max's price its really like an inital investment if u go down the route of subscription. if ur paying 265 (i think cant remember waht our place pays) for a yearly subscription for the free upgrades Max is a lot cheaper then say Maya or XSI which quite happily charge u 600 for an upgrade.

I agree with someone elses comment with MAx needing a rewrite, theres way to many menus where stuff has been added and added to, i guess discreet dont want to alienate its user base by doing a complete ui/program rewrite.

Velk
11-01-2004, 02:09 PM
I can't believe how many times this has come up.

Might as well ask, why can't I buy a NASCAR race car for $20,000. Its just a car, right?

3d software programs in general are very complex things. The math and solvers that are needed to push the limit into the next versions increase almost exponetially. Who doesn't want to pay $100 for a program that will allow you to model, shade and render hair, raytracing, and fluids in real time?

At the same time think about how much money you want to charge clients for your work. No one is going to pay you more than $10 an hour when some kid could buy the software after mowing 5 lawns.

I know, I know this is an elitist view (heck I've been saving for months to buy Maya and am not there yet) but in a way its good for the prices to be so high. It allows us to charge more for our services and consequently reap higher rewards for our hard work.

thorn3d
11-01-2004, 02:11 PM
These analogies are getting silly, and irrelevent as well.

Bobo has summed it up perfectly - the reason 3dsmax costs what it does, compared to other equally powered competitors, is due to a historical reason. Just leave it at that and stop trying to draw analogies between software and NASCAR.

thorn

PEN
11-01-2004, 02:52 PM
Hi guys

can you tell me why is it so expensive, I mean so high price to buy 3D max, its only a software right. If I wanted to buy 3D Max 7 from where I live which is UK it would've costs me 2,695.00 / 3,260.95 incl. VAT. Plus the regular license.
Discuss
Expensive? Your kidding right? I quess you don't remember the days when 3D Software was $40,000. I guess you also don't know what goes into creating it.

Max is cheap, I bought my first copy of it and it paid for itself and made me a profit on the first job I did with it.

Jimbo65
11-01-2004, 05:10 PM
Please... just compare the price of Max and Combustion to say Flame or Inferno on a Tezzro or Onyx... Nothing even close... and the performance of a 3D package is in many ways a heavier and more robust toolset...

Our recent Inferno upgrade (this is an upgrade not a new version) was like $67,000.00 US and the Flame/Smoke on Tezzro was over $200,000.00 (the maintenace contract on those systems alone is $32,000.00 a year :eek: )

So $3000.00 and $1000.00 for the lower end packages is really NOTHING!!!

Not to mention that one workstation with $4000.00 worth of software is capable of generating $45,000.00 a month in a high end Post facility!!


So in comparison seems REALLY cheap to me!

wildstorm
11-01-2004, 05:33 PM
When I first heard that 3D Studio Max 7 was coming out, I was stoked. I don't have alot of experience using the software. I kinda dinked around with Max 4 at my friends house but didn't really create anything. Well that all changed when I started viewing some animations over at 3dlinks.com Than I came on here looked at some stuff that the users of this online community have created and I was like "Whoa!!" I hopped on over to Discreets website and purchased my copy of Max 7. I didn't even download the trial software (Mainly because I do not have DSL....yet) I used my credit card that I just got done paying off 2 months ago. Yes, the software is expensive, but it was well worth it. And I don't do film graphics or any of that type of stuff for a career. I do this as a hobby and I enjoy doing it.

Marsel Khadiyev
11-01-2004, 05:52 PM
Its not the software that you buy, its the license. Licenses are not only binary code, they're a piece of mind, support, free training, and all the other things that come at that price. Nothing is free, and as somebody mentioned before Max was designed not for merely playing around, rendering and showing off to your friends. It was designed to realize professional intellectual properties and its scopes range way further than most people think.

Software is not easy to make and getting it to a selling point where you can guarantee its proper function and robustness takes experts and teams trained professionals. Therefore if you think that you cannot afford software like 3dsmax, its probably not the best choice for you. Trust me, people don't just sit down and make up prices out of the blue; you get what you paid for, and if you decide to make a serious commitment in this field- then $3000 is not that much at all.

My $(2.0e-2) :P

FreakyDude
11-01-2004, 08:18 PM
Yeah, but one of the things that's bugging me is: if I buy one commercial version when I'm done with school, can I say buy a version of max/license as you put it and use it unlimited? Or would I have to keep paying to renew the license?

TIMTHESORCERER
11-01-2004, 08:31 PM
yes! you don't need a "rental liscensce" the price thing is a no brainer, i beg admins to remove the next thread like this.

CGTalk Moderation
01-19-2006, 07:00 PM
This thread has been automatically closed as it remained inactive for 12 months. If you wish to continue the discussion, please create a new thread in the appropriate forum.