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View Full Version : Particels in max is better than in maya, why?


xX_eXiGe_Xx
12-18-2008, 02:16 AM
So at a lecture we had guy from england who said this, so I'm thinking of choosing max to make visual effect stuff when it comes to particles(I'm a compositor, you know, shake, after effects and nuke stuff). But I don't want to do this blindly, so can someone convince me or say that i shouldn't do it?

Bobo
12-18-2008, 02:36 AM
So at a lecture we had guy from england who said this, so I'm thinking of choosing max to make visual effect stuff when it comes to particles(I'm a compositor, you know, shake, after effects and nuke stuff). But I don't want to do this blindly, so can someone convince me or say that i shouldn't do it?

You have done the right thing - always check your facts and don't believe blindly what somebody said somewhere.

The truth is ... difficult to explain. Here is my view of it, which does not mean I am right or wrong, as it is very subjective.

Particles in Maya are old but powerful. With great power comes great ... difficulty. In short, creating and controlling particles in Maya is not easy and not for everyone, but the results can be great. It is just the ease of use that is nowhere near that of other systems. A good TD can surely do anything with Maya's particles, but make sure you know your MEL and Maya well...

Particles in Max are not necessarily better and they currently lack good dynamics simulation capabilities (you know, real world simulation with mass and realistic forces). But for 90% of the cases, Particle Flow is perfectly capable and VERY easy to set up. It might have the best balance of ease of use vs. power out there, and has some good extensions to give technical people like me the additional low-level access (Orbaz PFlow Tools Box #3). PFlow is great for working with rather large amounts of particles, and then there is also the Krakatoa plugin which expands those capabilities further, and FumeFX for those gorgeous fluid simulations everybody loves.
And then there is Cebas' Thinking Particles, one of the most poweful systems for dynamic simulation of mesh-based particles out there, but it is also relatively complex and has a steep learning curve. Still, the first time I had to do a movie effect with it, it took me only 3 days to get the basic setup that ended up in the final shot...

An earlier version of Thinking Particles is part of Cinema 4D, so even there you could do a lot of cool things.

Don't forget the new XSI 7 ICE system which features among other things great particles, and the king of particles and dynamics, Houdini (learning curve in the latter might be nearly vertical though).

So once again as with picking a 3D package for ANY purpose, the question is not "which system has the best particle system" but rather "which particle system gives YOU what YOU want and enables YOU to get the best result in the least amount of time"? In other words, the answer is subjective. So go download the Maya PLE and the Max 30 days demo, download a demo of XSI and get the Houdini free learning edition and see for yourself. This way, you will be able to pick the one you like, not the one somebody told you was better.

That being said, I am knee deep in Max particles every day and wouldn't like to use anything else, but I am highly biased.

xX_eXiGe_Xx
12-26-2008, 02:05 AM
I'm not the best MEL scripter, but I've heard that 3dsmax also got MEL scripting available (maybe because autodesk buyed max or something, i'm not sure). Anyhow, 3dsmax sounds great, I don't really want to do anything fancy. I just want to do something where it's very user interfernce friendly (Been years since I used 3ds max) when it comes to particles. But it feelings like I'm leading towards 3dsmax particels then in mayas. Thanks for posting such a long post, it was very helpfull!

Bobo
12-26-2008, 05:00 AM
I'm not the best MEL scripter, but I've heard that 3dsmax also got MEL scripting available (maybe because autodesk buyed max or something, i'm not sure). Anyhow, 3dsmax sounds great, I don't really want to do anything fancy. I just want to do something where it's very user interfernce friendly (Been years since I used 3ds max) when it comes to particles. But it feelings like I'm leading towards 3dsmax particels then in mayas. Thanks for posting such a long post, it was very helpfull!

Max does not have MEL, of course, but it has MAXScript. And Particle Flow is pretty nicely exposed to scripting - if you look at my signature, I just released over 7 hours of Particle Flow Scripting tutorials via CG-Academy. ;)
The UI of Particle Flow is extremely friendly in my opinion, so I assume you will have lots of fun if you chose to go the Max way...

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