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View Full Version : Should I bother buying XSI foundation? I'm confused


phonicsmonkey
12-12-2004, 07:17 AM
Hi, I'm a little bit disappointed (to say the least) with something I've just found out about XSI foundation.
I've been using 3ds Max for just under a year now and have just gotten the hang of it. But I'd been hearing really good things about XSI and how it was better for animating (i'm an animator you see). I got all fired up and wanted to buy it because of what i've heard and the price (i'm also a student) but then found out that HAIRand FUR arent included in foundation....so i was just wondering what you guys thought. Is it worth buying foundation? I'm a little scheptical now because i don't know what else is omitted from the package that i don't know about!
Thanks in advanced, I'm only a student so I really have to research and spend what little money I have wisely.

dAfTiE
12-12-2004, 07:26 AM
Not sure what other packages are out there for that price with fur and hair included,
As for the stuff missing from foundation,check out:
http://www.softimage.com/products/Xsi/v4/comparison/default.asp

comanche
12-12-2004, 07:35 AM
As a student, go for Advanced:
http://www.softimage.com/Products/Xsi/v4/educational/student-teacher.asp

j3st3r
12-12-2004, 08:13 AM
Cloth IS in FND, it`s not the syflex, which is included for ADV, but the original SOFTIMAGE cloth. It`s good for not too advanced animations.

If you are a student, then you should consider purchasing ADV EDU version.

Foot
12-12-2004, 02:58 PM
I am a student and have purchased the EDU version of advanced. It has everything there is and now comes with Behavior 2.0 for crowd simulations. As you can see from the link above it fits a student budget better than regular Foundation. It requires that you fill out a form and providing evidence that you are a student, but the hassle of filling out a couple forms and waiting a couple days is worth the ammount of money you save.

zaam
12-12-2004, 05:23 PM
The educational version is certainly a great deal, especially if you need hair badly. It's really interesting to me, though, how quickly we lose perspective on certain things when price changes occur. If you were to compare today's Foundation version ($500 USD) with the 3.5 Essentials version from a year ago ($7995 USD at the time), you might find Foundation to be a comparable product, to say the least. Essentials at that time did not include cloth, for example. It was an add on. Virtually all of the things that make XSI such a great product for animation are present in all three current versions. IMO, Foundation is an amazing deal. Also, with the number of seats being sold, don't be surprised if some 3rd party products begin to fill in some of the perceived "gaps" in Foundation. I would advise you to try out the demo. If hair and fur are crucial to what you do, you may need the EDU version. If your goal is to become a really great animator, though, don't get too hung up on feature lists. This may not apply to you, but most students I have known (I taught for 14 years) would have done better to focus longer on perfecting their command of animation fundamentals; and the presence of fur, dynamics or cloth might just take a back seat to attributes like great workflow and solid animation capabilities.

Best of luck.
MC

MJV
12-12-2004, 05:37 PM
The educational version is certainly a great deal, especially if you need hair badly. It's really interesting to me, though, how quickly we lose perspective on certain things when price changes occur. If you were to compare today's Foundation version ($500 USD) with the 3.5 Essentials version from a year ago ($7995 USD at the time), you might find Foundation to be a comparable product, to say the least. Best of luck.
MC
Man am I glad I didn't buy Essentials for $7995, though I understand that those who did got upgraded to Advanced. On the other hand, I'm kicking myself for having passed up the promotional opportunity to buy Advanced for $3000 just prior to 4.0 coming out. I know I should stay focused on animation and forgot the other stuff like hair and cloth for now, but it is a little sad to texture a head model and not be able to put hair on it. On the other hand, I'm not sure that XSI's hair is that much better than Shave & Haircut for Cinema, which I always had trouble with getting good shading and translucent effects. Do a search of XSI hair examples and you turn up next to nothing.

phonicsmonkey
12-12-2004, 06:24 PM
Wow, thanks for the great feedback guys! This truly is an amazingly supportive forum.
So right, if i purchase the edu version i will have access to most of the features right? wow, that is a good deal....there isnt anything annoying like a watermark on renders (or is that just LE versions of things? I'm not really stupid, i swear! ;))
I really do wanna focus on getting kickass animation, but on the other hand my course requires me to enter animation festivals so they kinda have to look good too, so fur and the like will be the icing on my filmic cake.
Thanks again guys, if anyone has anything else to add i'd like to hear it - i'm not going to buy it for a little while yet so i'd like as much info as possible.

zaam
12-12-2004, 06:50 PM
I believe that the EDU version is the same as Advanced, but can only be used in non-commercial work. Not sure if there's any kind of upgrade path, though. Be sure to check out what kind of work is coming out of schools like Ringling and VFS. I see their stuff being accepted at Siggraph regularly.

What school are you going to?

phonicsmonkey
12-12-2004, 07:04 PM
Brilliant, I'm so glad I posted on here - i would have just bought the foundation version! This gives me more features AND saves me 120 quid. Any good sites to check out ringling and VFS work? i've seen some on here and it's really realy high standard. I'm attending the Surrey Institute of art and design in the UK, not the greatest school but some good teaching and good opportunities to enter festivals like Annecy, Bristol etc..

Martin_G_3D
12-12-2004, 07:18 PM
Actually, it keeps suprising me how complete foundations is. When given the possibility to get advanced and I go check the differences, there isn't that much of a important difference.

Foundations doesnt have any limitations, it just has the advanced features as compositing and hair taken out. But no render size limits or watermarks or anything.

Anyway, as you just found out, the Academic is a better way to go for you, it is exactly the same as advanced, so you got everything thats there. Tho the important difference between academic and foundations is that you can't use the academic version commercially.

Anyway all the information is available on softimage website

zaam
12-13-2004, 02:25 AM
Ringling is here:
http://www.rsad.edu/indexfs.html

Vancouver is here:
http://www.vfs.com/

These are by no means the only ones to check out they just came to mind as a good standard for student work.

mikeha
12-13-2004, 07:39 PM
Man am I glad I didn't buy Essentials for $7995, though I understand that those who did got upgraded to Advanced. On the other hand, I'm kicking myself for having passed up the promotional opportunity to buy Advanced for $3000 just prior to 4.0 coming out. I know I should stay focused on animation and forgot the other stuff like hair and cloth for now, but it is a little sad to texture a head model and not be able to put hair on it. On the other hand, I'm not sure that XSI's hair is that much better than Shave & Haircut for Cinema, which I always had trouble with getting good shading and translucent effects. Do a search of XSI hair examples and you turn up next to nothing.
Actually, as I understand it, XSI Hair *is* Shave and a Haircut fully integrated into XSI. They've licensed the technology and they are making a huge profit on it, since you can get the plugin for C4D for around $500.

ThirdEye
12-14-2004, 01:41 AM
Actually, as I understand it, XSI Hair *is* Shave and a Haircut fully integrated into XSI. They've licensed the technology and they are making a huge profit on it, since you can get the plugin for C4D for around $500.
Softimage just used Shave as a starting point afaik, then they started developing and pushing it further

JDex
12-14-2004, 01:44 AM
Not to mention... Behavior, Syflex... makes the Shave & Haircut markup less huge methinks.

MJV
12-14-2004, 02:10 AM
Not to mention... Behavior, Syflex... makes the Shave & Haircut markup less huge methinks.
Yeah, but how many users need Behavior? WIthout that it basically boils down to five grand for S&H and Syflex, which just doesn't make a lot of sense. As much as I'd like to have them, there's no way I could justify $5000 for them.

JDex
12-14-2004, 02:30 AM
Fair enough... but the added MR licenses really cover 60%-75% of the differences IMHO anyway.

Ablefish
12-14-2004, 03:44 AM
Rigid bodies...

JDex
12-14-2004, 03:48 AM
Rigid bodies...
maybe next release :p

Hear they still need a lot of work. :D

ColinCohen
12-14-2004, 09:36 AM
Actually, as I understand it, XSI Hair *is* Shave and a Haircut fully integrated into XSI. They've licensed the technology and they are making a huge profit on it, since you can get the plugin for C4D for around $500.
I heard that they paid Joe Alter a fortune for it, so I doubt they're making a huge profit on it, especially when you add all the internal development resources it took to port it.

Vertizor
12-14-2004, 03:07 PM
Yeah, but how many users need Behavior? WIthout that it basically boils down to five grand for S&H and Syflex, which just doesn't make a lot of sense. As much as I'd like to have them, there's no way I could justify $5000 for them.
http://www.softimage.com/products/Xsi/v4/comparison/default.asp

Scroll down to the "Rendering" section.

mental ray Render Power (CPUs):
ADV: 12
ESS: 6
FOU: 2

Mental Ray is licensed by CPU. Did you think SoftImage was giving you those for free? :D

EDIT: Ooopsies, I'm being redundant, JDex already made this point.

AndrewATL
09-14-2005, 04:42 PM
So does the education version of xsi have any watermarks or anything messed up like that? I bought the lightwave education cause i heard it didnt have watermarks and yet when i rendered something it did, which pissed me off so thanks for any help.

animateddave
09-14-2005, 05:03 PM
Hi, I'm a little bit disappointed (to say the least) with something I've just found out about XSI foundation.
I've been using 3ds Max for just under a year now and have just gotten the hang of it. But I'd been hearing really good things about XSI and how it was better for animating (i'm an animator you see). I got all fired up and wanted to buy it because of what i've heard and the price (i'm also a student) but then found out that HAIRand FUR arent included in foundation....so i was just wondering what you guys thought. Is it worth buying foundation? I'm a little scheptical now because i don't know what else is omitted from the package that i don't know about!
Thanks in advanced, I'm only a student so I really have to research and spend what little money I have wisely.

1. http://www.softimage.com/products/Xsi/v5/comparison/default.asp - as you can see foundations is rather complete especially if you're a animator.

2. If you are a animator why would you need hair and fur?

3. If you're a student then why not get the education version which is advanced?

Leonardo Vega
09-14-2005, 05:06 PM
Things to think about...

Buying the education version is a super deal. But if you ever want to go commercial, if you can't afford Advanced, it might be hard to jump down to Essentials or Foundation. Now if you plan to work in a studio that provides XSI Advanced, then no big deal.

I agree that having syflex, hair, etc. included in foundation is crazy. But allowing people to buy them as plugins would be nice :) It's hard to think that foundation users have zero hope of using a good hair system. Like have a syflex lite and xsi hair lite for us lite-pocket users lol :D

But none the less, XSI is great! And I'm impressed with the current trend of people thinking of switching to XSI. Seems like everyone is considering it.

- Leo

AmbiDextrose
09-14-2005, 05:43 PM
I'm still wating for the fabled upgrade to the particle system purported to be out sometime by the end of the year.

AndrewATL
09-14-2005, 10:00 PM
If u buy the educational version can u use it as long as u want, even after u graduate and are not a student anymore? sorry but i thought i read that somewhere.

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