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Leonard
10-17-2002, 02:54 PM
Alias|Wavefront brings mental ray for Maya to all Maya customers

Toronto, Canada - October 17, 2002 - Alias|Wavefront™, an SGI (NYSE: SGI) company, announced today the strengthening of its alliance with mental images®. Alias|Wavefront is now offering the mental ray® for Maya® plug-in at no extra charge to all Maya Complete™ and Maya Unlimited™ customers. The mental ray for Maya plug-in, previously priced at $3,995*, is available free to all Maya customers beginning with Maya 4.5 and mental ray for Maya 1.5. Maya 4.5 customers can now download mental ray for Maya 1.5 public beta at <http://www.aliaswavefront.com/maya/getmental>.

Strong Alliance Brings Outstanding Offering to CG Industry

With the announcement of this strengthened alliance, Alias|Wavefront and mental images are committing to develop and integrate mental ray for Maya as a standard rendering feature in future versions of Maya.

“The decision to provide mental ray for Maya to each licensed Maya 4.5 customer demonstrates the joint commitment of Alias|Wavefront and mental images to put the power of mental ray for Maya in the hands of all Maya customers,” says Rolf Herken, President and Director R&D, mental images. “This is a spectacular offering. We encourage everyone with an interest in 3D content creation to evaluate the combination of mental ray with Maya and to explore the resulting limitless possibilities for the effortless creation of amazing imagery of unprecedented quality and visual richness.”


Empowering the Maya Community

"It is the natural evolution of our products, combining the best with the best," says Shai Hinitz, Maya Product Manager at Alias|Wavefront. "Our customers have been asking us to merge Maya's intuitive workflow and productive feature-set with the power and programmability of mental image's renderer. In doing so, we're injecting $3,995 worth of value into Maya 4.5 for free. Due to the advanced integrated workflow, Maya 4.5 users will instantly benefit from the photo-realistic rendering effects mental ray for Maya has to offer, in addition to the stunning imagery already possible with the native Maya renderer. From now on Maya customers will get to choose between two of the industry's most powerful renderers."



About Alias|Wavefront

As the world’s leading innovator of 3D graphics technology, Alias|Wavefront develops software for the film and video, games, web, interactive media, industrial design, and visualization markets. Entertainment and games customers include: Acclaim Entertainment, Inc., CNN, Core Design Limited, Digital Domain, Disney, Electronic Arts, Industrial Light & Magic, Factor 5 LLC, Midway Games, Nintendo, Pacific Data Images (PDI), Pixar, Sega, Sony Pictures Imageworks, Square Co., Ltd., Warner Feature Animation and Weta Ltd.

Alias|Wavefront is a wholly owned, independent software company of SGI® with headquarters in Toronto and custom development center in Santa Barbara. Please visit the Alias|Wavefront web site at http://www.aliaswavefront.com or call 1-800-447-2542 in North America. International contact numbers include: Northern Europe, Middle East and Africa, +44 (0) 1494 441273; Germany, East & Southeast Europe, 0049 89 31 70 20; France, Spain and Portugal, +33 1 44 92 81 60; Japan, 0120 764 088; other parts of Asia Pacific, 81 3 3470 8282 and Latin America, 770 393 1881.

* All prices quoted are in U.S. dollars. International pricing may vary.

MaDSheeP
10-17-2002, 03:10 PM
that is awesome news!

with how strongly Mental Ray ties in with 4.5... or so i hear, i haven't tried Mental Ray before.. but.. do you think this if the first step of replacing the maya renderer? or at least.. giving people all those rendering goodies if they want them?

anyway, awesome news, thanks for reporting this! :)

derelict
10-17-2002, 03:23 PM
Aw man! this means war! Who will benefit? US! US! Yeeeeehah!

But the only thing is, i'm no maya user. (sad....very sad)

But like all war... the other forces will join in the frey too! Yahahahaha! hope MAX heard the gong of war, man! Yehehehe! (rubbing hands with glee!)

ClingFree
10-17-2002, 03:29 PM
I thought this was just a temporary license for the public beta. Is that not the case?

-=TF=-
10-17-2002, 03:45 PM
WOHA !! :thumbsup:


cheers,
lars

artifish
10-17-2002, 03:54 PM
just checked the official site, cause I couldn't believe it at first - but it's there, too. looks like a lucky day for all maya users :)
and what a big surprise, I really didn't expect this.
curious how softimage and sideeffects will react to this...

phatgroovn
10-17-2002, 03:58 PM
:buttrock: :buttrock: :buttrock: :buttrock: :buttrock:

Fozzie
10-17-2002, 04:02 PM
I wouldn't doubt that this new decision serves two purposes...

1) Maya offers more free stuff in its attempt to tip the boat in its direction and potentially grab some new customers and users. Though I wouldn't doubt at all that this decision will cost them revenue (as all value added decisions do).
2) Its a first strike blow for Mental Ray to stay at the top of the 3rd party rendering pile before other solutions become available to potentially take market share away from them. I wouldn't doubt for a minute though that Alias is still forced to liscense MR liscenses at their own cost though, thus not affecting the Mental Images bottom line.

I do agree though that the consumers benefit a lot from this decision, though I just hope that the developers can continue to afford to do things like this without affecting their ability to remain profitable and thus in business.

Foz

wgreenlee1
10-17-2002, 04:13 PM
Wow they must really be feeling the heat from Lightwave,XSI and other programs dropping prices.
Just wondering when 3DSMax is going to smell the reality of the situation?

aurora
10-17-2002, 04:38 PM
I'm a devote LW user but have and occasionally use Maya 4.0. I have to admit that this pushes me ever closer to upgrading to 4.5 and utilizing Maya more in my work. Now if Maya will let me work on mulitple monitors as easily as LW then the scales could tip for me.

arvid
10-17-2002, 04:46 PM
The entire CG world currently goes:

"Yay free mentalray!"

then

*reads carefully*

then

"bummer, it all sucked, nothing but the stinking connection which doesnt even support maya subD was free, no MR after all"

then

"I better get XSI instead which've alwas had a free connection and rocks about 100 times more and was originally designed as a userinterface for MR in the first place, woho! xsi here i come!"

1 week later

"Im glad i didnt trust those bullshitting marketing ppl of alias, and I'm now a proud owner of XSI"



See ya'll on the other side folks!

MaDSheeP
10-17-2002, 04:49 PM
opacity: DoH!

Aurora: Hey, i run a dual monitor setup, i was curious what specific problem you were having using Maya on a dual setup?

fxgogo
10-17-2002, 04:59 PM
you know your supermarket at 4:00pm?

you know the vegetable counter?

you know that piece of fruit that is going for a quarter of its origional price?

that piece of fruit is Maya.


Well actually more than Maya. Almost every 3D app is doing this with the compositing market following closely behind. I mean I love this whole 'sale bargin bin' thing. But something in the back of my head is ringing very loudly. I think it is the song with the words, "there may be trouble ahead....". This sort of discounting and freebie business is indicative of impending problems or big change.

Meanwhile we the users reap the awards. But keep you eyes open people. Make sure you are not going to be burned in a year or less. Don't just jump ship willy nilly. Buy into what you need to do, not the marketing hype, never mind the cheap suited salesmen screaming 'Sale' on the corner.

MCronin
10-17-2002, 05:23 PM
Originally posted by opacity
The entire CG world currently goes:

"Yay free mentalray!"

then

*reads carefully*

then

"bummer, it all sucked, nothing but the stinking connection which doesnt even support maya subD was free, no MR after all"

then

"I better get XSI instead which've alwas had a free connection and rocks about 100 times more and was originally designed as a userinterface for MR in the first place, woho! xsi here i come!"

1 week later

"Im glad i didnt trust those bullshitting marketing ppl of alias, and I'm now a proud owner of XSI"



See ya'll on the other side folks!

What are you on about? It's not just the connection, it's the renderer as well. And if you read it carefully the press release headline seems to be saying that Mental Ray will now be Maya's standard renderer in future versions.

mental ray for Maya 1.5 will be included as Maya's standard rendering tool when this product is released.

If it doesn't support some features now, but I'm sure it will support every feature of Maya eventually if not when 1.5 goes final, if they intend for it to be their standard renderer.

arvid
10-17-2002, 05:29 PM
Since when do MR costs $0 ? Are you saying that maya is going to cost 4 times as much from now on or what?

kamil_w
10-17-2002, 05:39 PM
Hey opacity,

read the press release once again. It`s not that hard to understand.

You will get MR for Maya for FREE even after final release.

It`s that simple.

MCronin
10-17-2002, 05:43 PM
Do you pay extra for MR with XSI or SI? I seem to remember reading that Avid was selling Mental Ray Standalone licenses for 500 USD and SI 4 ships with Menal Ray and only costs like 1200 USD. MR doesn't sound like a terribly expensive product to begin with. Also, integrating Mental Ray into Maya probably doesn't cost a whole lot, at least not compared to developing a production renderer on your own.

Mikkel Jans
10-17-2002, 05:53 PM
Do you need a Mental Ray license to use Mental Ray with Maya or is the license for mental ray free when buying Maya?.
I only thought it was the connection plugin between Maya and MentalRay which was free?..
Do you really get Mental Ray for FREE??!?
If yes, why is it version 1.5 ?
Isen't Mental Ray at version 3.1 or something?

Chris Thomas
10-17-2002, 06:06 PM
Er from the wording of the press release it certainly seems like its just the connection to Mental Ray that has been bundled. To be honest if this is the case It should have been from the start if they ever wanted it to compete with PRman in the highend. I'm trying to dl the beta right now, I'll see if it comes with a license, but from the wording, i'd guess you'd still have to buy the MR licenses....

Chris Thomas

MCronin
10-17-2002, 06:07 PM
Here's my understanding. A|W licensed Mental Images' Mental Ray technology and is rewriting it and integrating it into Maya. So technically there is no standalone Mental Ray for Maya. What A|W intends to do is take Mental Ray and completely integrate it into Maya. I'd assume this isn't a one shot deal and A|W has access to Mental Images current code base so they can implelment new features of MR as Mental Images develops them.

roach105
10-17-2002, 06:07 PM
Mental Ray for Maya is a plugin that is on V1.5 and works with v3 of Mental Ray Standalone. The Mental Ray standalone is a totally seperate package. The Maya Mental ray provides an integrated solution for rendering.

Mikkel Jans
10-17-2002, 06:24 PM
Diden't AW release a free beta Many Days ago?
What's the different between this and the 1.5 beta they released some month ago?

Kal77
10-17-2002, 06:29 PM
Mental Ray for maya 1.5 is the product name of the connection between maya and mr, but also includes the mental ray renderer 3.1. The above will now be the default renderer for maya and is not gonna cost anything more for versions 4.5 +
Opacity: usually a good idea to read things properly before going and making comments like that :thumbsup:

Ejecta
10-17-2002, 06:33 PM
AW press release.
"The mental ray for Maya plug-in, previously priced at $3,995*, is available free to all Maya customers beginning with Maya 4.5 "


So what your saying is that just the plugin that connected you to Mental Ray v3 is nearly $4000? Man thats an expensive plugin. Then you have to turn around and spend around another $3000 for Mentla Ray stand alone? :rolleyes:

I dont think thats right. After spending all that you have more money invested than it would have took to buy XSI.


Qoute from mentla images:

"mental ray 3.0 is also available to end-user customers from Alias|Wavefront both as a stand-alone rendering software and as part of Maya on the supported Maya platforms."

Sounds like it can be both.

MCronin
10-17-2002, 06:42 PM
In the orignal release of Mental Ray for Maya, I think you had the renderer and the connection plugin as seperate packages. For the 1.5 Beta it's all one package, and I guess the renderer is implemented as DLLs. I don't have any version of Metal Ray installed on my machine, just the Mental Ray for Maya 1.5 beta plugin, and magically I am able to render using Mental Ray without installing the renderer. I'm fairly certain they are saying that they are giving away Mental Ray free to all customers. Keep in mind this is MR for Maya, and can only be used with Maya. There was a thread in the Maya forum a while back with answers about this from a guy at A|W who is working on MR. Maybe he'll step in and clear it up as I can't find the thread now.

xmb
10-17-2002, 06:58 PM
[EDITED for blatant stupidity]

Kal77
10-17-2002, 07:04 PM
mental ray (the renderer) is included with the plugin.
not sure if its going to include 1 or 2 cpu licenses though - hopefully it'll be 2 (like XSI). either way the news is good, and doesnt warrent the typical web forum soothsaying that goes on (ie A|W is doomed blah blah blah)..

freemind77
10-17-2002, 07:05 PM
why so ? you sucks not aliaswavefront.

Stimpy
10-17-2002, 07:10 PM
Originally posted by freemind77
why so ? you sucks not aliaswavefront.

sounds like we are really getting down to a sophisticated discussion.

people.. software wars are so sad. get over it.

use what works for you. easy.

isome
10-17-2002, 07:15 PM
i, for one, am happy. the only reason i keep max close is for the renderer, same with lightwave. i'm not bashing those, i just really enjoy using maya over them, but that renderer was pretty lame. now i'll be able get my stuff to look 'prettier'...unless i suck real bad...lol...

DragomanJK
10-17-2002, 07:21 PM
Good decision, good decision to lower price, to add water effects, to redo renderer, amazing. LOVE, Love, love. Love is all you need.
#1 complaint by lamers has been fixed!!!

Ibanezhead
10-17-2002, 07:37 PM
Life is good... real good. :bounce:

Vic

visualboo
10-17-2002, 07:58 PM
I just want to know if this is going to drive Soft to bring the price of XSI down.

Ejecta
10-17-2002, 08:07 PM
Originally posted by visualboo
I just want to know if this is going to drive Soft to bring the price of XSI down.

I doubt it. Soft seems to be pretty stuborn about it. I dont see now how they can afford to be. This is really going to change things a bit.

If XSI doesnt drop them soon I will be going with Maya.

Cman
10-17-2002, 08:11 PM
Originally posted by ClingFree
I thought this was just a temporary license for the public beta. Is that not the case?

Yep. According to the fine-print I read it is a temporary license that expires before official release. Still cool to play with, but it ain't permanent.

Licensed users of Maya 4.5 can make use of this exciting offer for the duration of the public beta period.These temporary licenses will terminate when Alias|Wavefront officially releases mental ray for Maya 1.5.

Ibanezhead
10-17-2002, 08:28 PM
Yep. According to the fine-print I read it is a temporary license that expires before official release. Still cool to play with, but it ain't permanent.

That's the beta. But they are now announcing that after the beta, MR will be free in the final release.

Toronto, Canada – October 17, 2002 - Alias|Wavefront™, an SGI (NYSE: SGI) company, announced today the strengthening of its alliance with mental images®. Alias|Wavefront is now offering the mental ray® for Maya® plug-in at no extra charge to all Maya Complete™ and Maya Unlimited™ customers. The mental ray for Maya plug-in, previously priced at $3,995*, is available free to all Maya customers beginning with Maya 4.5 and mental ray for Maya 1.5. Maya 4.5 customers can now download mental ray for Maya 1.5 public beta at http://www.aliaswavefront.com/maya/getmental.

Notice: "previously priced at $3995" and "at no extra charage"...

They arn't talking about the beta, but the final release, but then state that currently you can get the beta...

Vic

Cman
10-17-2002, 08:36 PM
Yes I read that. But when I followed the link it was further explained as a temporary license. So I'm confused.

---

Not confused anymore.

mental ray for Maya 1.5 will be included as Maya's standard rendering tool when this product is released.

That's awesome.

halo
10-17-2002, 08:41 PM
if you read a bit further on mental images FAQ u will see that mental ray can only be purchased from its partners not directly and they quote alias as being one of them, they also say it will support SUBDs as well in OEM implementations and to clear any doubt up the quote Maya as one of them :D

now doesnt this make discreets pricing for full licenses and upgrades just look daft, let alone thier pricing for MR :S

complete just looks like a very good deal for the future considering it only lacks fur, cloth and fluids

i wonder if maya will allow unlimited MR render licenses (as MR is licensed per CPU, not machine) as like they do with their own renderer..?

artifish
10-17-2002, 09:27 PM
here is something from shai hinitz ( a|w ) posted on the highend3d mailinglist, should clear up some things:

-snip-
Hi,

The thing to clarify here is that we used to sell 2 products in the mental
ray for Maya line. One was the optional integrated plug-in renderer for
Maya, the second was the standalone mental ray renderer.

The news is that the optional integrated plug-in renderer, called mental ray
for Maya, is now considered a standard part of Maya. In a future version of
Maya mental ray for Maya will be a feature of the Maya product, like Paint
Effects or Subdivision Surfaces. This does NOT affect the standalone mental
ray renderer, which we will continue to sell as a separate product.

I hope this helps.

Shai
-snap-

Grooveholmes
10-17-2002, 09:33 PM
Alias/Wavefront continues to suprise me everyday!

Thanks Guys!!!:applause: :applause: :applause:

Gentle Fury
10-17-2002, 09:34 PM
What is being said here is that the MR Render Plugin for Maya will be available free to Maya users! NOT THE STANDALONE! This is why it is viable. This would mean that AW and Mentalimages are now getting into bed together and allowing Maya users to use their service free of charge. MAYA USERS. Thus XSI users still have to pay, as do all the other 3d apps. Mental Images ALSO has a stand alone renderer which is Mental Ray 3.1. The reason they say 1.5 is because this is almost the second release incorporated INTO maya. SO, there are limitations to it and it cant do as much as the stand alone, because they are still trying to get the 2 technologies to play nice.

Now, as for mental potentially losing money, or even AW losing money........NO WAY! If mental images now has some profit share in AW then they stand to make a lot of money....and AW stands to make a hell of a lot of money since Maya with MR for free is about the same price you would pay for MR, so why not also get one of the best 3d apps available with it!

I cant wait to see Mental Matter......their Isculpt based modelling system!!! It would be nice to see a Matter plug for maya someday!!!!!


Happy Rendering!!!!!

Jaspar
10-17-2002, 10:20 PM
Can anyone tell me whether the plugin can be used on a separate machine? I can understand them only licencing one processor, but does it have to be the same one you're running Maya on? :shrug:

I've never found AWs website very transparent when trying to locate relevant info for the potential purchaser.

Still, great news! :buttrock:

3DDave
10-17-2002, 10:43 PM
It just looks like Maya is catching up to SI by giving you the first license at no extra charge. This could be good news since they may battle it out by giving out more licenses.

halo
10-17-2002, 10:50 PM
i'm pretty certain it would be on the machine maya is on as it will be tightly tied into the maya application rather than running as a seperate application as the stand alone version does

alphatron
10-17-2002, 10:52 PM
Everyone has this confued. The plugin does NOT need the standalone version of Mental Ray to render. The mental Ray for Maya plugin is ALL you need to use Mental Ray for Maya. IF you want to render standalone, then you need to buy a full lisence of MRay, but only then. This is what the beta is, just the plugin, but the plugin is everything you need.

Hope this clears everything up.

krisr
10-17-2002, 11:07 PM
This whole thing is no different than SoftImage's policy with MR. You get one MR license with XSI Essentials and you get the one MR license plus a bonus license when you purchase XSI Advanced. You pay a seperate price for the standalone licenses. I think its about time A/W includes a good renderer with Maya.....who knows.....MR looks like it could be the standard renderer for Maya in the near future which means it could possibly integrate better with XSI in the production pipeline :) Imagine being able to create and share shaders between both platforms easily......nice :thumbsup:

Array
10-17-2002, 11:19 PM
this is great news. i was going to buy a new synth, but that is going to have to wait until after i FINALLY get maya (or xsi if the price drops down). happy rendering!

ilasolomon
10-18-2002, 12:02 AM
MentalRay for Maya, or MentalRay NOT for Maya, this is not the problem, because the VRay for Maya is on the way! ;)

mushroomgod
10-18-2002, 12:11 AM
ila_solomon, do you know somthing about vray that we dont???


is it realy comming to maya?

Array
10-18-2002, 12:30 AM
both vray and brazil are coming to maya. i dont see how this creates any kind of conflict with mentalray though, as mentalray is free. you dont like it? get another renderer.

ZeroNeuro
10-18-2002, 12:45 AM
Vray and Brazil fo rmaya are months and months away. Splutterfish has said they would not even begin working on Brazil for Maya until they have finalized and perfected Brazil for Max.

mushroomgod
10-18-2002, 12:55 AM
Vray and Brazil fo rmaya are months and months away. Splutterfish has said they would not even begin working on Brazil for Maya until they have finalized and perfected Brazil for Max.

yep, thats what i thought...months...maybe a year or more :(

everything seems slow after using vray :annoyed:

ilasolomon
10-18-2002, 01:04 AM
everything seems slow after using vray

indeed!

skidd
10-18-2002, 01:11 AM
brazil for maya... 0_o just great!

spakman
10-18-2002, 01:52 AM
Originally posted by fxgogo
.... I mean I love this whole 'sale bargin bin' thing. But something in the back of my head is ringing very loudly. I think it is the song with the words, "there may be trouble ahead....". This sort of discounting and freebie business is indicative of impending problems or big change.

The only thing I see happening is that 4d tools, like their 2d brethren in the 90's, are becoming more accessible to all users as the genre itself becomes ubiquitous.

The days where one could get by with no skills other than the money buy a seat, push buttons, and read manuals to dazzle clients are coming to an end.

I mean, once the dazzle of "I use this super expesive app, so I must be talented" wears off, all you're left with is the artist.

And that's a good thing.

peace d=^)

beaker
10-18-2002, 03:48 AM
>>I cant wait to see Mental Matter......their Isculpt based modelling system!!! It would be nice to see a Matter plug for maya someday!!!!!

Gentle Fury:

Is it really supposed to be good? MI last venture into modeling tools sucked ass. The nurbs tools in max are written by the people at MI. We all know how good nurbs in max are.

Array
10-18-2002, 05:08 AM
mental matter Version 1.0 was completed in February 1999. The software is integrated into 3ds max R4.0 and is shipping commercially since January 2001.


That's straight from the Mental Images site. Are they still working on this? It seems that theyre hiring people that MIGHT be qualified to do this kind of thing:



We have the following R&D positions open:
Job Profile A -- Geometry
Geometric Modeling and Approximation of
Curves and Surfaces

geometric algorithm research and development
modeling and approximation of curves and surface
computational geometry
development and acceleration of algorithm
parallel algorithms and their implementation
software engineering
software interface design and implementation
all phases of development: design, implementation, testing, documentation, maintenance, and bug fixing.

Gentle Fury
10-18-2002, 05:32 AM
mental matter Version 1.0 was completed in February 1999. The software is integrated into 3ds max R4.0 and is shipping commercially since January 2001.

yep, thats what it says on there....wierd! I havent been able to even find a place to see screen shots!!! I've been waiting to see anything on the standalone!!!!

Im not a max user so i dont really keep up with that. But the Stand alone was supposed to be really cool, similar to ILM's ISculpt...........dunno what they are doing!

Course Mental Images is one of the worst companies for updating their site!!!!!

They have had the same gallery pics for like 3 years now!!!

lol

Happy Rendering!!!

(btw im noticing more people using my end quote....lol.....be nice!)

Werner
10-18-2002, 08:49 AM
I don't do allot of animation work, but if there was one app that I would migrate too, it would be XSI...wouldn't use maya, even if the app with mental ray, was for free. :thumbsdow

Grooveholmes
10-18-2002, 08:50 AM
:surprised

playmesumch00ns
10-18-2002, 09:09 AM
haha! I knew this had to be coming when there was no renderer upgrade in 4.5!

It's just like what happened with softimage, they had a wank renderer so they licensed MentalRay.

It's definitely a good thing. The renderer was the only thing that let Maya down, gives Alias|Wavefront more time to concentrate on what it's good at: NLA, oooh and better SDS!! Really cannot wait for Maya 5 now!

Wish it was PRMan tho!

PureFire
10-18-2002, 09:24 AM
[EDIT] Deleted by mod [EDIT]

arvid
10-18-2002, 09:48 AM
Originally posted by MCronin
Do you pay extra for MR with XSI or SI? I seem to remember reading that Avid was selling Mental Ray Standalone licenses for 500 USD and SI 4 ships with Menal Ray and only costs like 1200 USD. MR doesn't sound like a terribly expensive product to begin with. Also, integrating Mental Ray into Maya probably doesn't cost a whole lot, at least not compared to developing a production renderer on your own.

MR standalone costs 10 times more, almost as much as PRMAN

arvid
10-18-2002, 09:55 AM
Originally posted by Ejecta
I doubt it. Soft seems to be pretty stuborn about it. I dont see now how they can afford to be. This is really going to change things a bit.

If XSI doesnt drop them soon I will be going with Maya.

Maya as well as Softimage used to cost well over $50000, I can't believe you think that you can get these highend animationsystems for free. Mayas pricedrops is directly linked with their fall, they don't keep up any more, so they lower themselves to home-user level, and you expect Softimage to do the same? I HOPE they dont. You will never get R&D, development and support as good as Softimage's.

arvid
10-18-2002, 10:01 AM
Originally posted by Array
both vray and brazil are coming to maya. i dont see how this creates any kind of conflict with mentalray though, as mentalray is free. you dont like it? get another renderer.


How can you say that MR is free??? Its hella expensive and they had to do some serious sucking up to MI to get that deal, I'm assuming they also dropped the price of maya to 1 dollar, to cover up some of the massive losses, but as we know, they dont care about getting money in for R&D, they only want to sell huge bulks to get users. Good short-term for the user, crap for the industry as a whole, healty competition is good, this is not healthy, this is throwing yourself off a cliff and hope for the best.

Mikkel Jans
10-18-2002, 10:12 AM
bla bla bla.... I belive AW knowing what they are doing.
Let's look at the good sides of Maya now only cost $2k and got Mental Ray! + many other super features.

Can this be any better?

arvid
10-18-2002, 10:16 AM
Yes, XSI3 is right around the corner, you should and must doubt these "to good to be true"-deals.

alphatron
10-18-2002, 10:25 AM
Opacity,

What's "too good to be true" about it? Maya is $2k AND Mray for Maya is free. Plain and simple.

It seems like you are bringing some personal beef with A|W/Maya into this thread. The simple fact is this thread states MRay for Maya is now free, which it is, and any bias you have about the company isn't going to change that.

xynaria
10-18-2002, 10:45 AM
Originally posted by opacity
they dont care about getting money in for R&D, they only want to sell huge bulks to get users. Good short-term for the user, crap for the industry as a whole, healty competition is good, this is not healthy, this is throwing yourself off a cliff and hope for the best.


I don't think A|W went into their pricing strategy too lightly.. risky yes.. but I think huge alarm bells would be going off by now if it was failing miserably. Once the initial purchase as been made software companies make their money in the main on upgrades and support licences..if you make the intial sale very appealing then you are more likely to get that user base than the competition, and so consequently the future revenue streams. At some point new sales are inevitably small compared to the upgrade income. Despite what Discreet say, one of the main reasons that Max became dominant in the industry was its relative price and consequently the large user base. Something that at the moment they seem not to factor. I heard Nero did a similar thing.:)

psil
10-18-2002, 11:00 AM
Originally posted by fxgogo
you know your supermarket at 4:00pm?

you know the vegetable counter?

you know that piece of fruit that is going for a quarter of its origional price?

that piece of fruit is Maya.


Well actually more than Maya. Almost every 3D app is doing this with the compositing market following closely behind. I mean I love this whole 'sale bargin bin' thing. But something in the back of my head is ringing very loudly. I think it is the song with the words, "there may be trouble ahead....". This sort of discounting and freebie business is indicative of impending problems or big change.

Meanwhile we the users reap the awards. But keep you eyes open people. Make sure you are not going to be burned in a year or less. Don't just jump ship willy nilly. Buy into what you need to do, not the marketing hype, never mind the cheap suited salesmen screaming 'Sale' on the corner.

Yeh, here's what they'll do. A year or two down the line they'll release a new 'high end' app in the 5 figure price bracket with fantastic new tools which Maya will lack. All new R&D will be directed to this new app and its tools will gradually trickle down to Maya. Thus AW will have traded Maya's 'high end' status to corner the massive home user market, but studios will still pay through the nose for 'the real thing.'

Something like that. Just watch..

Khepri
10-18-2002, 11:40 AM
sorry just had to post this one!

http://www.trinitifx.com/images/siggraph_2002/day_3/day3_25.htm

lol!

oh and I am with Opacity!

stillvapour
10-18-2002, 12:12 PM
hey Khepri,the link is dead...or it's just me?

arvid
10-18-2002, 12:20 PM
Originally posted by alphatron
The simple fact is this thread states MRay for Maya is now free, which it is, and any bias you have about the company isn't going to change that.


Mentalray is NOT free. Shipped with maya for no extra charge is one thing but Mentalray is NOT free of charge, I can not use mentalray without paying for licenses, mentalray costs money to use, I have to pay money to use mentalray, mentalray is NOT free. Free as in $0, it costs money ..etc etc etc..

For example: Blender is FREE, mentalray costs money.

alphatron
10-18-2002, 12:21 PM
I never said Mental Ray standalone is free, I said Mental Ray for Maya is free, and it is.

arvid
10-18-2002, 12:24 PM
Originally posted by Khepri
sorry just had to post this one!

http://www.trinitifx.com/images/siggraph_2002/day_3/day3_25.htm

lol!

oh and I am with Opacity!

:beer: word!

sorry couldn't load the link tho :hmm:

hom
10-18-2002, 01:12 PM
Opacity, please stop polluting this thread with your "xsi-centric" garbage.

This is a thread about aw releasing mental ray for maya for "free", and not a "Well XSI is better" crap. How about you grow up and see the world without blinkered vision.

I applaud aw for doing this, its a good move to help replace a weak area of maya, namely the rendering. How you cant see this as a good thing is beyond me.

- John

arvid
10-18-2002, 01:24 PM
I have an investment, do you?

fxgogo
10-18-2002, 01:59 PM
Originally posted by spakman
The only thing I see happening is that 4d tools, like their 2d brethren in the 90's, are becoming more accessible to all users as the genre itself becomes ubiquitous.

The days where one could get by with no skills other than the money buy a seat, push buttons, and read manuals to dazzle clients are coming to an end.

I mean, once the dazzle of "I use this super expesive app, so I must be talented" wears off, all you're left with is the artist.

And that's a good thing.

peace d=^)

Oh I agree with you spakman. I have long been a advocator of removing the snob factor from this industry. What you say will and is happening which is great. What I was referring to was the company behind the product and how these business practices that are going on right now might end up doing more harm than good. I fully expect at least one of the big players to fall by the wayside within a year. You need to make a some sort of profit while you are dropping your prices, and I don't think some of these companies are.

alphatron
10-18-2002, 03:40 PM
I have an investment, do you?

Sure I do, but that doesn't make me feel the need to to go into XSI related news threads and talk about why Maya is superior. The software is just a means to an end, not the end. You really shouldn't take these threads personally, as they are not intended to be taken as such. It's just meant to inform people that Mental Ray for Maya is now free, not that Maya is now better than XSI.

arvid
10-18-2002, 03:47 PM
The information was very unclear thats why theres so much debate, and many things are still unclear.

alphatron
10-18-2002, 03:49 PM
Honestly, I don't see how anything can be unclear about this. It's as simple as ABC. What is unclear?

It is stated that the situation will be exactly the same as how the beta is set up right now. If you know someone with Maya 4.5, go through the process of getting the beta of the plugin in question, see that its free, see how it works, see that you don't need the standalone MR renderer/lisence. Then realize the exact same situation applies to the non-beta version (in which this whole thread is about) and everything will be clear.

alphatron
10-18-2002, 03:57 PM
And straight from the horse's mouth (Shai Hinitz from A|W):

The thing to clarify here is that we used to sell 2 products in the mental ray for Maya line. One was the optional integrated plug-in renderer for Maya, the second was the standalone mental ray renderer.

The news is that the optional integrated plug-in renderer, called mental ray for Maya, is now considered a standard part of Maya. In a future version of Maya mental ray for Maya will be a feature of the Maya product, like Paint Effects or Subdivision Surfaces. This does NOT affect the standalone mental ray renderer, which we will continue to sell as a separate product.

arvid
10-18-2002, 04:10 PM
The unclear part: how is MR in maya financed, since its not free, and maya costs way below what MR costs. I'd really like to know! As I said, I got investments and I dont like the idea that MI gives MR away for free to a|w after 10 great years of cooperation with Softimage. I'm sure they don't, but its one smelly deal if you ask me.

And I'm sure it has EVERYTHING to do with the fact that XSI3 is coming out within 2 weeks

visualboo
10-18-2002, 04:14 PM
opacity: I get ya. Things like that suck don't they? But either way, it IS free to the end user no matter how A|W did it.

arvid
10-18-2002, 04:16 PM
Originally posted by visualboo
opacity: I get ya. Things like that suck don't they? But either way, it IS free to the end user no matter how A|W did it.

yea sure seems like it.. :surprised

so where can I pick my 1000 free MR licenses.. really? where?

alphatron
10-18-2002, 04:20 PM
Well, I just downloaded mine straight from Alias Wavefront's website :)


Works pretty darned well too :D

Wiro
10-18-2002, 04:33 PM
What do you mean by investment, Opacity? Isn't MR "free" with XSI anyway? You'd have to buy Maya to get MR and then only for that one Maya node (if I got it right). Any additional MR nodes = $$$

So what's the fuss all about, gee?

Wiro

Kabab
10-18-2002, 04:36 PM
I guess they are probably paying mental images royalties on every copy of Maya sold.

Why does everybody have a cry when Alias does something for the community ??

Maya has shaped into a awesome tool which is proven and has a great tool set at a very good price why not take advantage of this ?

Chewey
10-18-2002, 04:39 PM
I don't understand what all the noise is about either. I'd like to see the thread stick to the topic and not devolve into an "investments" rant.

arvid
10-18-2002, 05:18 PM
Originally posted by Wiro
What do you mean by investment, Opacity? Isn't MR "free" with XSI anyway? You'd have to buy Maya to get MR and then only for that one Maya node (if I got it right). Any additional MR nodes = $$$

So what's the fuss all about, gee?

Wiro

Yea its the same sort of deal Im sure. Look this got a little out of hand here. But wouldn't you be surprised if they started shipping Maya free with new iMacs or something though? Makes you wonder how its possible, and why you should buy maya at all since its "free". MR is not free, I think thats very important, but I'm stunned from the fact that Maya costs much less than mentalray itself. Someone please do the math for me.... :curious:

MCronin
10-18-2002, 06:00 PM
This is really sounding like sour grapes to me...

MR standalone is 5,000, or whatever, because people let Mental Images or Avid or whoever get away with it. I'm positive that at one point a year or so ago SI had a special on MR for 500 USD per license, how could they afford to do that? Some companies are afraid to drop their prices because if it doesn't significantly increase their sales, there is no going back to the old pricing structure, so they test the water with limited time offers like that. Remember the Maya Complete price drop to 1999 was temporary, but I guess it worked for A|W because Maya Complete is still 1999. As far as how AW is doing it, I imagine they just looked and the situation and decided that they had all the pieces they needed to dominate the market, but the one major complaint they've heard time and time again is how "crappy" their renderer is. So they had a choice, spend 5 million and 18 months developing their own renderer, or license MR for half that and ship in 12 months. Just an example but I imagine it's significantly cheaper for them to license the technology and pay royalties than it is to develop and maintain a renderer of their own. It's good for A|W because they save money and get the production renderer their users have been crying about, and it's good for MI because they get a constant revenue stream through royalties.

arvid
10-18-2002, 06:06 PM
That still doesnt explain how maya can cost $1999.. promos is one thing, this is permanent

Ejecta
10-18-2002, 06:37 PM
I just talked to AW they said you now get in the beta version of 1.5 the MR for Maya (THIS IS NOT THE STANd ALONE VERSION OF Mental Ray that is still for sale at $3000, get this through your head people!!!) that has two licenses per seat. After the beta is over current owners of Maya will be able to get the final version MR for Maya 1.5 for FREE and the new versions of Maya and new sales will have it installed with the software.

You get two liceses per seat!!!!

I know this pisses of XSI people but the version that is intergrated into XSI at this point has a few more features that may change as MR for Maya is further developed.

I could care less how they can do it but they are and that is great for all!!

I think it shows XSI may be a bit over priced. I still would go with XSI but the extra $6000 is becoming hard to justify.

MCronin
10-18-2002, 06:53 PM
Sure it does. This software is only expensive because people are willing to pay that much for it. Alias has been working on this technology for almost twenty years, and has been selling animation software since the mid 80's. Most of this technology has already paid for itself. There's no reason why Maya Complete couldn't be mass marketed for 150.00 at your local computer or Best Buy store except fo the fact that A|W is fairly certain there aren't enough people interested to sustain their business at that price, plus it damages their credibility among professionals. They've warped us into thinking that if software isn't expensive it isn't good. So all these software companies continue to market it to professionals and charge outrageous prices because their market is small. Look at what competition has done just over the last 10 years. It used to be the only viable options were SI and PA each costing in excess of 30,000 and Houdini or Prisms which was something like 50,000. These packages and the hardware that ran them were extremely expensive and not nearly as capable as todays software, but now you can get software that's as if not more capable these were in the early 90's for 200-2000 dollars. Because the market isn't growing fast enough to sustain all the competition, these companies have to drop their prices to sew up as much of this market as they can for themselves. Some comapnies are resistant to dropping prices, but eventually it's the competition is really going to hurt their bottom line and they won't have any other choice. I'm willing to bet we'll see both Max and XSI have significant price drops or at the very least some big promotional pricing over the next year. A|W is just the first company to take an agressive approach to increasing their revenues and market share. Eventually it's going to effect all the other high end applications as well.

Wiro
10-18-2002, 07:02 PM
I couldn't aggree more MCronin.

As for Maya's MR...yes, that's an important point: it's NOT MR standalone. What exactly the differences are I don't know; it might only read Maya files, not support all of MR's featuers, only work from within Maya's UI, maybe have other limitations. So to me it doesn't sound so crazy that it's included for free, especially considering what MCronin said concerning A|W spending less on licensing than creating by themselves.

Wiro

elmers77
10-18-2002, 09:20 PM
plus no one was shelling out the $4000 to buy MR because most production houses either use renderman or the standalone version of MR. So AW wasn't making any money selling it as an extra so they had to offer it for free or get rid of it.

xynaria
10-18-2002, 10:38 PM
Vacuum Cleaner = Hoover
3D Animation = Maya
The only people who know if this is going to happen successfully are probably A|W or the companies that are feeling a declining base as new upgrades aren't taken up. It's also far more feasible after the price drop for even small companies and freelancers to no longer be app specific so maybe no one really looses in the end. Time will tell. It's arguable that at least one of the other major companies was possibly financially in a better position to adopt this strategy.. they didn't.. they might be laughing louder in the end or....... they might be defunct. Once the gauntlet was thrown down they had a choice of how to respond.
Thing is.. do MI rest with what they get from SI and standalone licences or do they go for a royalty rate (and publicity) and increase their market penetration immensely.. the figures must have added up for them and how the hell can any end user be upset??????? :hmm:
Basically.. what has other software got that Maya hasn't got.. arguably now very little (not starting a software war but trying to surmise an A|W possible perspective).. next attack for global domination is possibly the learing curve.

Grooveholmes
10-18-2002, 10:44 PM
Originally posted by xynaria
Basically.. what has other software got that Maya hasn't got..

Hah ha, curves that have smooth or rigid corners. Those bastards. That should have been included in 4.5 That's just passive aggresiveness on duncan's part I think.

xynaria
10-18-2002, 10:47 PM
LOL :)

MCronin
10-19-2002, 05:38 AM
Originally posted by Grooveholmes
Hah ha, curves that have smooth or rigid corners. Those bastards. That should have been included in 4.5 That's just passive aggresiveness on duncan's part I think.

Do you mean something like this? It's a surface that's revolved from a single curve in Maya containing both smooth and hard CVs.

beaker
10-19-2002, 06:50 AM
>>So they had a choice, spend 5 million and 18 months developing their own renderer, or license MR for half that and ship in 12 months.

Actually MI started developing the MR to maya plugin back when maya 1.0 first came out. It took them almost 4 years to get a working translator up and working. A/W took over some of the development of the connection like 1.5-2 years ago. A translator to a third party renderer is no easy job. That is why I believe that it will be atleast another 2 years before we even see Brazil or Vray for maya.

MCronin
10-19-2002, 07:19 AM
Splitting hairs here but you kinda skipped the very next line of what I wrote.

Just an example but I imagine it's significantly cheaper for them to license the technology and pay royalties than it is to develop and maintain a renderer of their own

I don't believe A|W spent as little as 2.5 million and 12 months working on MR for Maya. I was just trying to paint a picture of the reasoning A|W probably put behind a move such as this.

Cman
10-19-2002, 04:34 PM
Originally posted by opacity
Yea its the same sort of deal Im sure. Look this got a little out of hand here. But wouldn't you be surprised if they started shipping Maya free with new iMacs or something though? Makes you wonder how its possible, and why you should buy maya at all since its "free". MR is not free, I think thats very important, but I'm stunned from the fact that Maya costs much less than mentalray itself. Someone please do the math for me.... :curious:

Hmmm, I think I'm beginning to see your point. Wouldn't it make more sense to buy 8 seats of Maya just to get the MR render licenses instead of buying licenses of MR-standalone for 2x the cost?

How are the two renderers any different?

TRi-14
10-19-2002, 10:32 PM
excelent! im still not moving away from PRman, but still a great toy :) for free

halo
10-19-2002, 11:23 PM
Hmmm, I think I'm beginning to see your point. Wouldn't it make more sense to buy 8 seats of Maya just to get the MR render licenses instead of buying licenses of MR-standalone for 2x the cost?

well im not sure that you would get the parallel rendering that mr standalone can do i.e. it can split a single frame across an entire LAN/WAN and use all the licensed processors on chunks of that one frame...i think the MR licenses would be tied to each Maya licence which although would allow individual frames to be rendered on licensed machines, single frames couldn't be split and i'm not sure if you can render from say max as the mr would be licensed only to maya....however plugins like muster maybe able to simulate distributed renderering, but i think mr will always be tied only to maya, not like the standalone which will render any .mi file or from any translator

Cman
10-20-2002, 04:32 AM
Ah. Okay I can see how that could be limiting for hardcore rendering, but I would think small shops could definitely benefit from buying more Maya over MR standalone. Maybe that's A/W plan. :)

beaker
10-20-2002, 09:31 AM
>>Hmmm, I think I'm beginning to see your point. Wouldn't it make more sense to buy 8 seats of Maya just to get the MR render licenses instead of buying licenses of MR-standalone for 2x the cost?


That 3995 that they sold MR for maya included the translator. The standalone version of MR starts at $2500 and goes down very quickly depending on how many licenses you get. I believe it gets down to about $1500-1800 when you reach around 25-30 lics. Also this is all relative because when you are buying 10+ lics you can always wheel and deal for lower prices, they are never set in stone. This is the same with maya or any other software in a niche market. You don't pay retail when you are buying alot of licenses(10+).

Grooveholmes
10-20-2002, 10:25 AM
HAHAHAHHA, I just got the mental picture of beaker saying all that with the beaker voice.

Jhonus
10-21-2002, 12:36 AM
LOL :applause:

Gentle Fury
10-21-2002, 03:02 AM
Originally posted by Grooveholmes
HAHAHAHHA, I just got the mental picture of beaker saying all that with the beaker voice.

Ummmm, if im not mistaken didnt beaker just meep?

Meep meep meep meep meep meep!

arvid
10-21-2002, 09:25 AM
Originally posted by MCronin
I'm willing to bet we'll see both Max and XSI have significant price drops or at the very least some big promotional pricing over the next year. A|W is just the first company to take an agressive approach to increasing their revenues and market share. Eventually it's going to effect all the other high end applications as well.

And they will be the first to eat the dust, and max is to old and stubborn to stop for some reason, but Softimage needs the income for R&D, if you have been actively following XSI's success you would know that. Its clear that Maya is in a downwards spiral, nothing but patching will be done from now on, it will never get *fundamentally* better than it already is, I'm not saying its bad, Im just saying it stopped "growing". So a|w squeezes the last drop out of it, I can see why, but it's not exactly good for the future as far as custumers are concerned. However, with the relatively low budget needed for maya, you don't paint yourself into a corner and can afford a switch of software. And healty competition drives things forwards, I rather Maya was expensive and great like XSI than just cheap and good like the rest *biased*
:beer:

ZeroNeuro
10-21-2002, 10:05 AM
For me, the interface of XSI and the lack of support for trimmed nurbs, as well as a lack of a material preview are all shortcomings that I am surprised about. XSI would be a great program indeed if it did what softimage | 3D does, in addition to the newer XSI features.

As far as R&D funding goes in relation to cost, I don't see that as a factor. Maya with Mental Ray for 2000 (which does include mental ray 3.1 with one workstation license) will put more copies of Maya into the hands of more users. In relation, that is 3 seats of Maya, with mental ray for 6 processors ( assuming the machines are all dual SPM) for the cost of one XSI with 2 mental ray processors. In produciton terms, this makes Maya a much more viable solution. Besides, the lower the cost of the software, the more licenses will be sold. Lowering the cost of a software package will boost sales numbers that I am sure will bite into the lower cost packages such as Lightwave and 3DS Max. So if Maya replaces those markets, as well as being also adopted by new studios and existing maya studios, both mental ray and maya will gain from it.

Discreet has claimed that cost is not a factor in their customers decision to use Max. Yet, I beg to differ. Already I have heard of at least 5 major houses who will be switching to Maya in 2003. And more users of Maya means a larger userbase that customers can draw from. More development from 3rd party developers, and a new niche in an existing market. One thing that makes Max appealing to a lot of people is the option of buying from a large catalog of plugins.

So the marketting strategy of Alias is clear. Saturation

arvid
10-21-2002, 12:14 PM
Softimage has a very good idea of what the actual users appreciate, thats why they have made some very correct choices in what to implement in a very tight schedule, XSI v3 is the 4th major (read: groundbreaking) release of the software in 2 years. Rest assure that NURBS and whatnow will be implemented shortly, people will find themselves in a position were they no longer have anything to complain about, that will raise eyebrows all over the business, those who realise this already made the switch. Softwarecosts matter much more to freelancers and hobbyists, but it's people with skills that costs money to the studios, so they will get what's their people need to finish the job.

The Maya price is still a mystery, they couldn't possibly ever cover the costs, but are only interested in spreading the software at any cost. If I were a|w I'd make sure to have a very big Ace up my sleve, like "maya:the next generation", completely rewritten software, like Softimage did with XSI, or maybe they have just given up? :shrug:

isnowboard
10-21-2002, 12:21 PM
Can't really disagree with what ZeroNeuro is saying. Makes very logical sense.

Free = a good thing. Lucky Maya users.

arvid
10-21-2002, 12:43 PM
Nothing is free, and if it appears to be, its probably not as good as it should be, at least qualitywise, in this case the quality of support, R&D etc.

isnowboard
10-21-2002, 01:07 PM
If you bought Maya, it's free. It's not a conspiracy theory.

http://www.dictionary.com/search?q=free

Just because the price of Maya has gone down, doesn't mean R+D has also been abolished comparied to XSI and such. Economies of scale...simple economics. Maybe AW has found the ellusive balance where they sell more seats and make more money versus selling less seats at a higher price.

Lightwave costs anywhere between $995 and $1500, depending on the special and what reseller you get it from. Do you think they are doing half the R+D that AW is doing based on a $2000 price point, or 1/15 the R+D that the XSI people are doing?

This is good news for Maya people and indirectly good news for other people because the other software companies have to keep up to what AW is doing.

Wiro
10-21-2002, 01:09 PM
Opacity, do you have ANYTHING to back up your claims about A|W going under, MR shipping free is bad, etc, etc?? I've heard naysayers talk about Maya the whole year long and all I can see is them eating their way into all other software's shares, especially 3ds max's.

Don't you know that the highend market (that XSI is part of) is saturated? It was relatively small from the start and A|W is being wise trying to get into the midend market while the rest are sleeping.

"I rather Maya was expensive and great like XSI than just cheap and good like the rest *biased*"

Oh man...my sides are splitting, sorry. Biased indeed.

Wiro

arvid
10-21-2002, 02:12 PM
here we go.... :surprised

I dont know if they're going under.. But these are just very worrying signs! Competition and development is more important than über-saturating *all* markets, personally I wouldn't buy either of them, they're way too expensive, all of them, but the pricetags are aimed at companies.

Therefor: put a price you can stand for, and deliver a damn good product!

Do you disagree? Or do you just want a lot of Kai's PowerGoo and Posers and Bryces ?

xynaria
10-21-2002, 02:50 PM
Originally posted by opacity
here we go.... :surprised

Or do you just want a lot of Kai's PowerGoo and Posers and Bryces ?


The weakest link I find in A|W's plans for world domination is simply that it can't operate at a level similar to Poser or Bryce... nor is it easy for people new to 3D to learn compared to some. The learning curve is going to deter some... but bang for buck it's now got about the most convincing arguement around. The 3D market I believe is (or was) according to market share... Max, Lightwave, Cinema 4D. For all the ridiculous arguements saying buying software isn't based on price.. this should surely show different.
Yes if you are a reasonably well to do studio, software price doesn't come into it, but for many it does and that is at the end of the day where the bulk of the sales are going to be. I have a lot of admiration for Maxons continuing development and targeting all areas and then improving. A|W must surely know that the two biggest factors in buying software are for many, price and user base.. consequently they have targeted both very agressively. Di$creet may well complain that it's a cheap ploy etc etc completely forgetting that that was one of the reasons Max rose to such prominence along with it's *cough* "ease of availability".. hence huge user base, so A|W brought out PLE.
Any arguement about which software is better may soon go out of the window if some companies go under. Most argue that betamax was far superior to VHS.. but which became synomynous with the term video????? and where did that leave betamax.
What A|W seem to be doing at the moment is addressing any possible objection to using Maya and if they are successful they will have a far greater financial return than selling to the high end studios at a higher price.. Another factor to bear in mind is that games in 5 years time are going to be a vastly different beast to what they are now and that that is definately the market to go for with a high end app.
If A|W pull this off then the only losers are the apps that might get a dwindling user base and the winners are both A|W and the users. If they look like not pulling it off the signs should start showing in the not too distant future and I'm sure A|W will amend their strategy... what is more worrying is the companies that are not responding to this pro actively.. Look what happened to Detriot when they ignored Japan. :)

Gentle Fury
10-21-2002, 09:24 PM
Put a hefty pricetag on something and it must be great......put a lower tag and it must be crap.

Well i started using maya when it was $30,000 and it was worth it........now at $7995 it is even more worth it! The software is still the best (IMHO) and the reason MR is now going to be the standard Maya renderer is because of all the complaints they have gotten from their native renderer (of course the only reason anyone would ever have to complain about it is because they dont know what they are doing and want an easy one button solution!). Something i discovered about maya a long time ago is the answer to the question.........can you do this? and the answer has ALWAYS been yes! Even before you could use MR in maya......can you do GI.......hmmmmmm, well it took a lil coding but the answer ended up being YES. Can you do muscle based deformation............few workarounds and a lil mel knowledge......YES. How about image based lighting! Think think think, workaround workaround......yep, did that too!

The only thing having something awesome like MR does is makes it easier to achieve these effects, and calculate them more efficiently and accurately!

Honestly the only difference ive noticed between Maya and XSI (other then the exorbinant price difference) is a few plugins and features that you could make yourself with some mel magic.

Basically the whole point is........it has nothing to do with the software, they are all great.....its all about the user. It's like using one brand of paint over another.....true there are some brands that are just nasty looking, but some people can take those and use them in ways that noone has ever seen and make it look like they used the ultra expensive paint........it was all about your knowledge of your medium.

All i know is that Alias|wavefront has been the greatest company in the world to us! Hell, at siggraph i had a conversation with Bob Bennett (General Manager, Product Development Group at A|w) and he personally wrote me an email refering to a project we had talked about.

Just because it has a low price tag does NOT make it an inferiour product! Sad that so many seem to believe that to be true!


Happy Rendering!!!!

Cman
10-21-2002, 09:55 PM
Originally posted by Gentle Fury
Put a hefty pricetag on something and it must be great......put a lower tag and it must be crap.
...

duh- You just learning this! :D

beaker
10-22-2002, 01:15 AM
>>The Maya price is still a mystery, they couldn't possibly ever cover the costs, but are only interested in spreading the software at any cost.

Not really, you could have said the same thing about PA, Soft3d and Prisms back when it they were 50-80k and then went down to 30k and then again down to 7-15k 3-5 years later.

Also with a/w moving the rest of their development staff from Seattle/Santa Barbra to toronto they saved atleast 2-3x on staffing costs and even more on rental of the studio space. Santa Barbara especially, is a very beautifull, but extremely expensive area for housing and staff. They saved lots of money by moving their development staff out of the US so they are passing the savings onto the consumer.

>>If I were a|w I'd make sure to have a very big Ace up my sleve, like "maya:the next generation", completely rewritten software, like Softimage did with XSI, or maybe they have just given up?

Maya is only 5 years, you usually don't totally rewrite your software every 5 years becasue it takes 4-5 years just to do the rewriting part. Shelf life of the code is usually closer to 8-10+ years. PA/Studio and Soft3d both lasted 10+ years just fine. I think the maya code is just fine, they did lots of bug squashing in version 4.0 to clean up the old code. Also most of Maya is one big mel script you can pretty much rewrite under the hood without the user seeing much change, ala MR being fully integrated into future versions of maya. A/w has allready rewritten the dynamics code and added other moduals without any problems.

I hear 3dsmax is being rewritten from scratch(only being out 6 years.) Though this seems to be because of their own blind sight back when they first made 3dsmax. They were one of the very first apps running on Winnt 3.5 and they wrote their code so it is extremely dependable on windows so it is next to impossible to port with the current code to other platforms. They find themselves being left out for expanding beyond windows. Everyone else had the advantage of allready being on other platforms so they had allready made their code more portable.

mustique
10-22-2002, 01:52 AM
It's not just the pricetag that is important to success. Max was popular cause there were plenty of books and such around to learn it. Every app is as widespread as its learning materials and media. And aw is doing well on that part too.

So I guess by 2005:

MAX will be history.

Maya will be the industry standart in the gaming market.

Maya X and XSI will be the king of the hill again.

Next gen LW will be anywhere inbetween.

Grooveholmes
10-22-2002, 01:55 AM
Now those are some predictions I would like to see come to light.

beaker
10-22-2002, 01:59 AM
>>So I guess by 2005:
>>
>>MAX will be history.

I'm not a big max fan, but Im not blind because of that. 3dsmax has like 150k+ seats. Way more than any other 3d app in the 1k+ price range. Those seats aren't just going to dissapear over night, nor is the software. Max will still have plenty of people in the games and commercial production using it. I'm sure they will rise to the occasion, if not they are stupid. It may take a few years(just like that big space of time when soft3d had lost its ground and xsi came out, about 3 years). Max is still a viable product and I am sure there will be plenty of users of it for the future to come. They are just going to have to adapt, thats all, just like a/w, newtek and everyone else has done.

Grooveholmes
10-22-2002, 02:08 AM
Yeah but from Discreet's own press releases.. i.e. the one referring to maya's price drop.. They don't feel they have to adapt. Which is rediculous. Hey I started out on max in school. I got sick of the way Max treats the user. The program is like a goddamn beauracracy... like standing in line at a government office. So switching to Maya for me was a godsend. Now that's ONE seat they lost right there. There isn't a user of max that I know personally who isn't looking for an alternative who hasn't already switched. So we'll see... their seats are dwindling.. just watch.

beaker
10-22-2002, 02:21 AM
>>There isn't a user of max that I know personally who isn't looking for an alternative who hasn't already switched.

You know all 150k people that have a copy of 3dsmax and know for a fact that they are all looking to switch to another app? Wow, thats alot of damn people to know. Wish I knew that many people. Hot damn!

Joking aside, this is a very naive statement that simply because everyone you know that uses 3dsmax is switching means that everyone else is switching too.

I'm sure you heard this 1000 times when you were a kid:

Kid: But Mommmmm, everyone else is doing it!
Mom: So if your friends told you to jump off a bridge would you?
Kid: Uhh, no.

mustique
10-22-2002, 02:26 AM
"I never looked back again"...

You hear this sentence from almost every max user who made the switch. Including me. Of course those who seek beautifull renderings won't find the one button solution and maya is still far away from providing a totally integrated mray renderer like XSI's...

Personally I think it was CS that kept max alive till now. I'm not sure if discreet realizes it but they were lucky for a script called "meshtools" which kept us max modellers satisfied for about 18 months. I too hope of a comeback of max. But discreet looks more interested in its video editing&compositing market share cause apple plays big.

Also discreet hasn't shown anything in terms of innovation which doesn't promise much for max's future. I don't want to bias any max user here, this are just my personal opinions about discreet and hey! max was my first love:love:

xynaria
10-22-2002, 02:29 AM
There are a lot of Max users who are totally sick of Di$creets attitude to be sure.. ok maybe not 150k.. but most Max users I have talked too think that they really need to pull their heads out their arses to retain anything like the user base they have become accustomed too. Max 5 was hardly the release it could (or should) have been by any means and wasn't exactly an article of faith to many users. Too little too late too slow too cobbled too expensive.. not exactly the greatest of advertising slogans is it. :hmm:

Grooveholmes
10-22-2002, 02:34 AM
That's HARDLY a naive statement. Esp. when I'm speaking of actual experience. Never did i state that I know all 150k people that use max... Merely the people that I do know personally. That comes from many, many people who I've met through school, different jobs I've had, as well as met through big events like Siggraph. So I'm just judging the climate by what I've heard and seen. Which obviously has to be echoed through the rest of the industry.

Why don't you actually read the post before you reply eh? :rolleyes:

beaker
10-22-2002, 02:39 AM
I totally agree with you guys on max getting its ass kicked, but as with most companies, once they really start getting their asses kicked and the all of a sudden see the light, they rise to the occassion. As I said, it may take like 3 years, but I am sure it will happen.

Softimage went through the same thing before XSI came out. Shit, they advertised XSI for like 4 years before it even shipped at siggraph. Soft people were getting pretty sick of seeing this vaporware that nothing was happening with and soft3d updates just weren't doing it anymore. Many people ditched it and moved to maya or max. Now look at them, XSI is a pretty nice competitive product. It took them a while and things looked pretty glum for a while there, but it did happen.

beaker
10-22-2002, 02:49 AM
Grooveholmes:

Get a grip dude, didn't you see that I said it was a joke about you knowing all 150k people that own 3dsmax.

I still stand by my post that it was a naive statement.

Quote:
>>"There isn't a user of max that I know personally who isn't looking for an alternative who hasn't already switched. So we'll see... their seats are dwindling.. just watch."

This says to me that your saying, simply because everyone you know that uses 3dsmax is leaving, means that everyone else is going to leave too, and I just find that as a blind faith statement.

xynaria
10-22-2002, 02:53 AM
ROFPML.:bounce:

Hey lets sort this out like gentlemen.. who's volunteering to ring Di$creet up and ask them how the upgrade sales for R5 are going and how many new copies are shifting off the shelves like hotcakes!:p :rolleyes:

Grooveholmes
10-22-2002, 03:03 AM
[EDIT] no need to start a flame war [EDIT]

Grooveholmes
10-22-2002, 03:15 AM
:rolleyes:

arvid
10-22-2002, 10:14 AM
Originally posted by Gentle Fury
Put a hefty pricetag on something and it must be great......put a lower tag and it must be crap.


Thats not at all what I said, I said; make a damn good product, and put a pricetag which you can stand for.


Maya is only 5 years, you usually don't totally rewrite your software every 5 years becasue it takes 4-5 years just to do the rewriting part.



Exactly. That's why they should've started such a next-generation project by now or it'll be too late by the time they got a finished product. Softimage|3D nearly halted in development the last couple of years becase XSI was being developed, I see the same sort of pattern with a|w, but if they aint doing something great, they will truly be dead within this 5(or less)-year period, hell even max might outlive them.

alphatron
10-22-2002, 10:24 AM
This is slowly denegrating into those flame wars started by 14 year-old videogame console fans.

"SONY R Suk~! NINTENDO R00LZ"

arvid
10-22-2002, 10:29 AM
hehe, Amiga kicks Ataris ass!!

ZeroNeuro
10-22-2002, 10:32 AM
Originally posted by xynaria
There are a lot of Max users who are totally sick of Di$creets attitude to be sure..

I just became sick of never getting any replies or callbacks for any of the tech questions I had with discreet. Hell, just getting pricing is like try to book a flight to Bethleham via Space Shuttle at Christmas time.

alphatron
10-22-2002, 10:35 AM
opacity R biAz~~!

arvid
10-22-2002, 10:36 AM
Originally posted by alphatron
opacity R biAz~~!


hehe. err, what? :p

ZeroNeuro
10-22-2002, 10:44 AM
Originally posted by opacity
Exactly. That's why they should've started such a next-generation project by now or it'll be too late by the time they got a finished product. Softimage|3D nearly halted in development the last couple of years becase XSI was being developed, I see the same sort of pattern with a|w, but if they aint doing something great, they will truly be dead within this 5(or less)-year period, hell even max might outlive them.

I am not sure where you are coming from with this statement. Maya WAS revolutionary. Remember when XSI first came out? I thought for sure that XSI would have been ditched after seeing the first version. I am not trying to judge you here. But I do believe that you have a personal animosity towards Alias|Wavefront. Have you used Maya for any projects? If so, I would like to hear personal experiences. Supposition and allegiance to one software company should not hedge your opinions towards another. Regardless of the investments you have made. It is like saying that all Porsches stink when you have only driven an Aston Martin.

ilasolomon
10-22-2002, 11:20 AM
"tiger is stronger or lion?"
or...
"batman is more powerfull than superman!"

:shame: :hmm: :thumbsdow :annoyed:

arvid
10-22-2002, 12:24 PM
Originally posted by ZeroNeuro
I am not sure where you are coming from with this statement. Maya WAS revolutionary. Remember when XSI first came out? I thought for sure that XSI would have been ditched after seeing the first version. I am not trying to judge you here. But I do believe that you have a personal animosity towards Alias|Wavefront. Have you used Maya for any projects? If so, I would like to hear personal experiences. Supposition and allegiance to one software company should not hedge your opinions towards another. Regardless of the investments you have made. It is like saying that all Porsches stink when you have only driven an Aston Martin.

I never said maya was bad, I saw final fantasy, LOTR, Stuart Little etc..

But where do you think Maya is in 5 years when its 10 years old? There'd better be some improvement, I only know what happened to Softimage|3D, which was a great app of its time just like Maya is a great app of today, but if you look ahead you realize that the very base for maya is betting old, fast. Even LW is going down this route, and we know they're going for a next-generation system. I never said Maya is bad, I'm only stating the obvious fact that its getting old, and a good sign are these recent grasps for air to stay afloat a little longer. However I have NO reason to think that Maya will have disapeared in 1, 2 or even 5 years, just that it aint getting any younger! Perfectly comparable with Softimage|3D. Both great apps, but in different times (remember that in the softwarebusiness, 1 year is like 10 million humanyears as far as evolution is concerned). Soft3D still lives, but have a more successful successor following it, thats evolution for you. If maya wants to evolve the next 50 million/5 years of evolution I think they should have a look in their genepool to see what's growing.

Does this analogy make any sense :p

However all this is so competely basic, in fact I'm sure you are very aware of this, even next-gen LW and XSI have their lifespan, but I honour the fact that it's their time ahead, you should be exited! :cool:

ZeroNeuro
10-22-2002, 12:42 PM
Hhehe yeah. I'm excited about the next Lightwave. :) I suppose one thing that gets me about these programs, Max especially, is that the version numbers are flying by and I see no real changes. XSI 2 last year. XSI 3 this year. What? XSI 4 next year? THe basic system of XSI and Max have not changed from the last whole number version to the current one. (I am of course relating XSI 1 and XSI 2. I have not seen 3 yet.) The version conventions are really confusing. At least Pixar is still on version 3. (even if it is in iteration 11). Personally I don't see teh implimentation of Mental Ray 3 as an evolution for any software package since it is only a 3rd party collaboration. Take away mental ray from maya and you have a renderer at least. Take mental ray from XSI and you have... well you get the picture here. Really, most of the software developers aren't going forward by much. And anything can happen. Who would have thought last year at this time, that Apple would buy out Nothing Real and Shake would be aiming at being a Mac only application by late 2003? I have a friend who is organizing a boycott of Apple because of that. He apparently had 3 licenses for Shake under NT, with an upgrade path already paid for. And he will not be able to go any higher than version 2.5 as lng as he is using NT. His solution? Heheh he is waiting for Nuke :D

arvid
10-22-2002, 01:26 PM
hehe! let him know he's not alone in his nightmare, I'm hoping for NUKE as well. Almost felt like I lost an old friend that dreadful day ;)

About versionnumber conventions..look at imageready, it jumped from 3 -> 7 when Photoshop 7 came.. hehe, what's a versionnumber like that worth, and look at Shake, they did so small teeny-weeny increments, 2.41, 2,43, [...] and one year ago 2.46 came out, and with some really nice upgrades :P~ They even included the releasedate in their versionnumers. Then there's Softimage|3D (originally Softimage Creative Environment, which btw is mentioned in the credits of Jurassic Park 1), it have existsed more than 10 years and *just* barely got to v4.0. Before that it was 3.9.2.2 (can you believe that versionnumber), and it was 3.7 in 1998 or so. While XSI is already up at 3.0, but I understand that, because that program have really evolved fast, huge great news and updated in V3, its the biggest yet, even tho 1.5->2.0 was massive, this is really a 2.0->3.0 upgrade, I like it!

ZeroNeuro
10-22-2002, 01:34 PM
Yeah I remember Softimage. I was using it in 95. hahah then Riven came out and I felt like I was a crappy artist in comparison. Isn't it funny that stuff done just in 94-95 is still something that people use as a measuring stick?

Anyway I understand your loyalty to XSI. I don't share it.. (kept crashing on me. For no apparent reason) but I understand it. I think that Maya is a better package. But that is just my personal opinion. UI interaction is certainly the best that I have used.

Cheers

Wiro
10-22-2002, 01:48 PM
I thought this discussion was about how adding MR for free to Maya will hurt A|W now...not in 2-5 years! Anything can happen in that time, even a rewrite.

if you think Maya is looking old now you should have a look at max. Maya still has a solid core just like XSI.

Wiro

arvid
10-22-2002, 02:06 PM
Yep, Im just thinking of the future of all these apps.. I have a lot more respect for Maya than Max (and this has nothing to do with what's being produced by artists in either software). Also it would be nice with some future strategies instead of just short-term bread-money strategies for them...

(edit: ) oh, and I do not think MR will hurt maya, did I say that? No I sertainly didn't.. but its a sign, of what I can only speculate in

Kabab
10-22-2002, 03:06 PM
You guys also have to remember Alias has the Studio Tools range of software which is widely used and considered the holly grail amoung Industrail desingers/automotive people.

Due to this Maya gets used heaps in thoes industries for simulation's sure it not the same as making movie's but its a big field and Maya is well postioned in it and by adding things like mental ray it just make that postion stronger.

I can't wait for the day Studio tool's and Maya become one.

dantea
10-22-2002, 03:43 PM
Originally posted by ZeroNeuro
His solution? Heheh he is waiting for Nuke :D

Some interesting competition for Shake:
http://www.sidefx.com/cgi-bin/sfx/companynews_more_view.pl?filename=halo2.txt

roger
10-22-2002, 05:31 PM
But where do you think Maya is in 5 years when its 10 years old?
Do I really care?
I will learn/use want I need to use. I use Maya now for my job.....I used to use LW. I would love to use XSI, but there does not seem many CG/FXhouses in LA using XSI. So as long as my employer uses Maya I will use Maya... if they start using XSI, then I will use XSI.

It's that simple. :)


Roger
http:/www.fxstation.com/monsterlab//

googlo
10-23-2002, 02:46 PM
Well, I think part of the problem with all these programs is that they have pretty much come of age now, there really isn't revolutionary grounds to break like they were doing in the past ten years. Like it's getting to the point where once everything was viewed revolutionary; and now more that they serve their purpose well but should be better; it's more about refinement and improvements and cleaning up the loose ends, but not necessarily huge groundbreaking stuff that everyone has gotten used to in the past 15 years. Instead of people saying, "Holy cow, it can do this now?!". Now it's more like "Why isn't it doing *insert ability here* already or doing it better already!".

Like Photoshop. Awesome application, with more cool stuff to be done, but there are only so many things that need to be developed and enhanced before there isn't any parameters left to cover or take advantage of in image editing and drawing.

If you look at any products over their invention and lifespan, they all take the same route it seems like where there is a period of intense evolution then as they near perfection towards their intended tasks things don't really improve by leaps and bounds anymore because their is no reason or purpoes too.

Like at some point, rendering is going to be like this too. Right now we get excited about features that should already be there, and as technology develops and our understanding of how to impliment mathematical principles increases into them, it will level off. Realism will have been achieved in every natural world form and all that will be left is how open the program is where people can tweak things to their hearts content to make whatever NPR type of renderings they want as well.

arvid
10-23-2002, 03:16 PM
The problem with renderers isnt the math, Im sure they would've figured out GI and SSS in the 70's too, but there was even hardly any graphical monitors back then :D The problem is speed of computers, every renderer has ways to cheat to get an effect, and a lot of these cheats in combination with a lot of parameter tweaking you can get great images. But if CPU speed was "unlimited", ie like in real life, you could have true photo-quality or better without any effort at all, realtime in your viewport with atom-based models :cool:

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