View Full Version : Why Softimage? what makes it so special?

05 May 2002, 03:51 PM
Alright first off I am on the verge of selecting softimage as my package of choice.

But I have one question for this community, why? Why should I choose softimage over the powerful modeler that lightwave has? Or all the free plugins available for max, not to mention the industry standard Maya. What makes lightwave a cut above the rest? I know its animation tools are second to none but really does it have the modelling prowess of other packages?

Please enlighten me on why lightwave is a superd choice for not only animation but also for modelling the models which I will be animating.

Thanks in advance, matt.

05 May 2002, 04:22 PM
Bonjour msf,

1- Modeling, imho, is really kickass in XSI. I don't know Lightwave, but I know SI3D and max, and I prefer XSI much much more. See workflow below.

2- Rendering is unchallenged. Despite certain bugs, quality and integration is second to none.

3- Workflow is also unchallenged. Anyone who used several packages will talk about workflow, wich is very intuitive. The way you use the keys is powerful. Just by holding down a key you can temporaly override the function you're in and do what you want, release the key and then you're back in the previous function. This makes modeling a charm.

4- Another thing I like very much is rigging. When you enveloppe a character you actually paint the weights on the character with a brush tool, and I think this is a great tool! Also, you can easily offset constraints and animate them. Bones also have a parameter that you animate to blend between IK and FK.

Overall, XSI is a fairly easy package.

For the plug-ins, XSI is still a young product, but it looks like there will be many plug-ins to come.

Finally, support is excellent. You get answers from Softimage very fast. They try really hard to help you.

Just my 3 cents
Salutations - Cheers
Bernard Lebel

05 May 2002, 04:25 PM
you'll know once you have your hands on.

05 May 2002, 04:50 PM
XSI has decent modeling.....especially subdivision surfaces. The rendering, character rigging, animation and workflow are by far the best. It all depends what you want the most. XSI isn't cheap. If doing character animations and fx stuff is the most important, than XSI is probably the best choice. Max does have a lot of plugins but XSI's open interface is allowing animators to create amazing tools very easily and distribute them through various user groups and websites. And as far as Maya being the industry standard....I'm sure that will soon change ;)

05 May 2002, 07:15 PM
As Far as pugins and other things like that

It's super easy to just make your own. Xsi uses most scripting languages, so if you get a basic understanding of that your pretty well off.
The workflow, to me anyway, is alot less frustating than any other software I've tried like maya and 3dstudio.

Aside from all that you should just get it for the rendering capabilities alone.

05 May 2002, 08:37 PM
the ui is simply customisable beyond anything else i have ever used!
it's so called "subdivision" modeling is also great too.

integration with MR is seemless, and your not limited with a simple gui either, MR is tunable under the bonet as well :)

character animation and rigging is the best i have ever seen.

plugins for max make it simply more unstable than it already is (which is not very stable)

lightwave is also industry standard, being used in many more productions around the world than you might expect...

Joel Hooks
05 May 2002, 09:13 PM
One thing i really like is the built in compositing (FXtree). It's node based like Shake (which itself costs like $10,000!) and is a great intergration with your 3d scene. I've never used shake, but I have greatly enjoyed my limited time with XSI.

I've personally had enough of 3dsMax. With all the add on's it ends up being a hugely expensive application, that lacks greatly in the stability department. The workflow has many issues also.

Softimage has put in some really hard work. I think XSI and Lightwave are going to dominate the near future of the 3d industry.

05 May 2002, 11:33 PM
I currently use a combo of Maya and Softimage3D at work and have used Lightwave and MAX at a previous job. I can get by in all of them at a similar level. My personal preference would be Lightwave if it were just me, on my lonesome and is what I own at home.
However, I'm definetly thinking about trying XSI, although much of what is stated above is available in the other packages, it seems only XSI and LW are being truly inventive with their workflow and features.
Maya is really just a user friendly and more versatile version of MAX in my opinion, but they don't inspire me to feel comfortable with them as much as I do with old Soft3D and LW.

I have my bet on XSI and LW for the future also. Just need to get my hands on that XSI demo to see if I might be right.

05 May 2002, 11:37 PM
Mattoo and lowdown,

You might interested in this article on CG Channel. On the last page Brad Peebler talks about a Lightwave-XSI pipeline.

Salutations - Cheers
Bernard Lebel

05 May 2002, 03:56 PM
a very strong advantage of XSI is that it is not limited to one scripting language, which you have first to learn, there are several and common languages and that's great.
Very interesting is also that XSI is more built for the network (with netview) than other packages,plus it is soooooo fast with the slider technology. And it also introduces compositing into a 3d package.

05 May 2002, 02:54 AM
and then of course is the experience/preference factor.

the more i use xsi the more i like maya.

that being said, give it a try and decide for your self.

05 May 2002, 03:38 AM
it's Canadian........

05 May 2002, 02:00 PM
Originally posted by mr.bean
and then of course is the experience/preference factor.

the more i use xsi the more i like maya.

that being said, give it a try and decide for your self.

wow, :surprised you have to be one of the first people I've ever heard that used XSI and went back to Maya. May I ask what you didn't like about it?

05 May 2002, 03:36 PM
lol. :)

well, i'll sidestep this deliberately because we would really haveto go point by point and in the end all we would compare is my preference versus yours. for every one thing that i say doesn't work for me a hundred people will say the opposite. so, basically being lazy, the answer to your question is this: with the exception primarily of rendering, comping (for colour correction within render) and their equivalent of trax, take every feature and conclude that mays is better for me.

hows that? hehehe ;)

however, technically there's something to be said for both depending on the circumstances.

05 May 2002, 06:13 AM
I bought Softimage :)

w00t w00t

05 May 2002, 07:35 PM
[msf] you are da man! :)

05 May 2002, 08:07 PM
Originally posted by raffael3d
And it also introduces compositing into a 3d package.

Houdini had built in compositing way before softimage did.


05 May 2002, 08:49 PM
Originally posted by Vic3k
[msf] you da man! :)

I second that :)

05 May 2002, 11:41 PM
Originally posted by Sheep Factory

Houdini had built in compositing way before softimage did.

ya so did mirai.( tho its implementation is a bit weird to work with :/ cuz its like photoshop/ add a lot of ability to do programming( its kinda like expressions...but with some extra stuff in there.....but not. )..hmm.

houdinis compositing is kickass by the way :) same with the audio mixing. ( though i never really got used to the audio mixing bit. im just speaking from what i been shown )

Mike RB
05 May 2002, 06:44 AM
[msf] you not da man! you didn't buy Lightwave.

05 May 2002, 10:56 AM
Mike RB you are no da man for complaining on the da man

05 May 2002, 06:44 PM

LW? pshhh :D

05 May 2002, 10:10 AM
XSI?, Maya?, Lightwave?, After giving them all a go Id have to say
the XSI-Lightwave combo sounds pretty sweet, so far as eas of use-quality gose.
Now what would be shit hot would be to have a lightwave modeler button in XSI, not to say that softimage lacks in that department but lightwaves modeler is the fastest and simpilest poly, Sub-d modeler on the planet and the quality is second to none IMO, and XSI's animation tools are as easy to use for animation as lightwave modeler is for modeling without sacrificing quality.
Maya, could probably do anything, and consistantly proves it can,
{with a thousand programmers behind it}. But I love the interface, DAM first impressions!!

Just my $0.1

05 May 2002, 03:19 PM
Hey Mike I already own lightwave :thumbsup:

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