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stevecullum
10-03-2006, 10:15 AM
Does anyone know if the 2 CPU mental ray licence you get with foundation and essentials, supports dual cores? My workstation is a dual, dual core, so if I buy a seat of XSI, I need to make sure I buy the right one to support all available rendering threads.

Thanks!

JDex
10-03-2006, 10:21 AM
Each MR license AFAIK is good for 2 sockets... so, if you buy Foundation and have a dual processor, dual core system, it will provide 4 rendering threads.

stevecullum
10-03-2006, 10:50 AM
Great news!

I'm almost sold on XSI. Still not sure if I should go essentials or foundation, but there seems to be a few features in essentials that would be extremely useful in a production situation and the RBD's look pretty tasty too!

LemonNado
10-03-2006, 12:41 PM
I bought Fnd and upgraded a short time later to Ess as the included compositor and a few other things are really a good deal.

Rainer

stevecullum
10-03-2006, 12:49 PM
Nice!

The compositor isn't really that much use, as I use Fusion 5, but the GATOR looks really interesting. Was there any discount when you upgraded?

JDex
10-03-2006, 12:56 PM
The compositor can be very useful while setting up multi-pass renders... even if it's purely to check things w/o leaving the app and there are some wild things you can do for creating custom effects in the FXTree directly into the Render Tree. Until they implement >8bit output from the FXTree though, it's not a comparison to Fusion for finals.

GATOR is probably worth it alone, in case you hadn't heard, it's like magic. :D Batch rendering, satellite rendernodes and a handful of other features really do make it hard to pass up, unless you're on a student budget.

As for going from FND to ESS... you'd be best served to find out from your reseller or SI direct about that. Also a new version in on the horizon, so you may want to keep that in mind.

stevecullum
10-03-2006, 01:21 PM
Also a new version in on the horizon, so you may want to keep that in mind.

I'm glad you mentioned that! I just read a few horror stories of folk paying for XSI and then having to pay again for a new version that came out 10 weeks later. I'll proly hold tight for now then, and learn what I can on the demo version.

Lone Deranger
10-03-2006, 01:22 PM
Hi stevecullum,

In answer to your initial question, I can confirm XSI5.11 on a dual-dual core system will render with all four procs available. I just finished installing 5.11 on my Mac Pro and XSI is performing flawlessly. Worked right out of the box and it's lightning fast.. you'll love it I'm sure. :thumbsup:

stevecullum
10-03-2006, 01:54 PM
I just got the demo up and running and its a little confusing right now. I'm currently a LW user, so having so many options is great, if a little over whelming! I'll be happier once I get comftable with manipulating the viewports and objects. There are a few tools I use all the time in LW modeler, like the drag tool. It allows you to click on different points and just drag them about without having to hit the space bar or reselect ect..

Is there a way to get something like that going in XSI?

LemonNado
10-03-2006, 02:08 PM
The Ess compositor is integrated. That allows you to do a lot of cool stuff like adding an effect to a texture / movie and drop that as texture onto an object. Can't do that with an external comp.

And don't get confused with 'buying again' a new version. That's valid for Fnd. But with Ess you buy the license once and then procure a maintenance agreement which entitles you for free professional tech support and any upgrade minor or major in the next 12 month. Ess is about 1800$ right now and Maintenance about 800$. Best is to look for a used Ess and then get the maint. No better deal than that. But contact a reseller or SoftImage as pilicies change and special programs/offers come and go. The good thing is that you CAN sell Ess. Unlike FND which you buy once and that's it.

Cheers
Rainer

stblair
10-03-2006, 03:35 PM
I just got the demo up and running and its a little confusing right now. I'm currently a LW user, so having so many options is great, if a little over whelming! I'll be happier once I get comftable with manipulating the viewports and objects. There are a few tools I use all the time in LW modeler, like the drag tool. It allows you to click on different points and just drag them about without having to hit the space bar or reselect ect..

Is there a way to get something like that going in XSI?

How 'bout the tweak component tool?

CiaranM
10-03-2006, 04:03 PM
I just got the demo up and running and its a little confusing right now. I'm currently a LW user, so having so many options is great, if a little over whelming! I'll be happier once I get comftable with manipulating the viewports and objects. There are a few tools I use all the time in LW modeler, like the drag tool. It allows you to click on different points and just drag them about without having to hit the space bar or reselect ect..

Is there a way to get something like that going in XSI?

Try the tweak tool. It kicks drag's ass. You can move points, edges and faces using smart selection, without leaving the tool. You can define any co-ordinates (global, object, local etc.) or a reference for moving relative to another component e.g. draging a vertex along an edge. Press the proportional button and you have the 'dragnet'. Use sticky keys to temporarily pickup the add edge tools and when dropped you'll automaticall return to tweak mode. You might never leave this tool. :love:

stevecullum
10-03-2006, 04:33 PM
That is schweeet!! - thats all the modeling adjustment taken care of. Just what a drag tool should be like! :D

So the last thing on the learning curve today is figuring out what going on with the subD's...Not quite like pressing Tab. I like the way in LW modeler, you can pull the points of a subD cage around, but with the display cages off in the preferences. Is there any display modes similar with this?

BTW - Thanks for you help guys. I'm a noobster again :)

wmendez
10-03-2006, 04:52 PM
From http://softimage.wiki.avid.com/index.php/INFO:_Understanding_Rendering_Licensing

Dual-Core CPUs

For rendering licenses, a dual-core CPU is no different than a regular single-core CPU: they both consume one license only.

For example, a dual dual-core CPU takes two render licenses but uses all four cores.

A dual-core CPU helps speed up the multithreaded aspects of XSI such as rendering, render regions, fx compositing, envelopes and lattices, and cage deformations.

elfdestruct
10-03-2006, 06:31 PM
So the last thing on the learning curve today is figuring out what going on with the subD's...Not quite like pressing Tab. I like the way in LW modeler, you can pull the points of a subD cage around, but with the display cages off in the preferences. Is there any display modes similar with this?
This isn't exactly an answer, but now that you've gotten familiar with tweak mode you may just want to try a Get > Primitive > Lattice now - just be sure to have the existing object selected before you Get it. Set it to 1x1x1 and you've got a nice basic cage for tweaking. :)

stevecullum
10-03-2006, 06:59 PM
thanks - I found the + and - keys which are pretty much what I needed. So much here to get my head round, so I'm just trying to find the equivelent LW tools to see how they compare in terms of speed and functionality. I'm liking it alot so far though :D

ColinCohen
10-04-2006, 01:59 AM
You might find the following document useful:

http://www.xsibase.com/users/Lightwave%20to%20XSI%20Quickstart.pdf

Sbowling
10-04-2006, 03:56 AM
Be sure to go through (or at least browse through) the tutorials that are available. There are a lot of things in XSI that work differently in XSI. The ability to move the centers around and snapping are extremely helpful.

stevecullum
10-04-2006, 09:17 AM
Nice PDF link. I'm currently trawling the web looking for tuts. So far the Digital Tutors site has been very good. Just joined the XSI base too - plenty of good stuff there also - cheers!

dwigfor
10-04-2006, 07:36 PM
Fantastic stuff also at www.3dtutorial.com (http://www.3dtutorial.com) . Also take a look at www.3dquakers.com (http://www.3dquakers.com) and www.3d-palace.com (http://www.3d-palace.com) has some free tutorials.


I found Edge Creases work much better than in LW, where it at least used to be point based. Not sure if that changed when they added edges. That might help with your subd problems. Also, I think you can display the poly cage and manipulate that to adjust the subd mesh.

Definately buy maintenance! Unless you don't want to purchase any future versions, it's cheaper than buying an upgrade (as long as they release a version each year)..

The compositor is pretty sweet. I often use it just as an image viewer that is easily resizeable/panable.

The Walk/Fly/Drive tools are pretty neat for navigating thru a scene!

Also, a lot of selections and things make use of shift/alt/ctrl/lmouse/mmouse/rmouse

Womball
10-04-2006, 08:00 PM
Is there a blender to XSI quickstart guide too?

stevecullum
10-04-2006, 08:23 PM
Definately buy maintenance! Unless you don't want to purchase any future versions, it's cheaper than buying an upgrade (as long as they release a version each year)..

Here is what I was thinking. Foundation in its current form still offers some advantages over LW9 and costs pretty much the same as a Worley plugin. Softy 6 has got to be due soon, so if I wait till that gets released and buy that until I'm fully functional with it. Then according the XSIbase FAQ, I would still get maintenance updates. Later I can trade it in for Essentials with the maintenance and get a discount to the value of Foundation. Does this sound right?

I think its going to take me sometime to get the most from all this good stuff, so right now I dont want to fully commit, until I'm sure I'll be able to use all the power on offer. (Although I'm pretty sure I will :D)

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