Generally speaking, I would only consider the Infinite or xStreme versions for professional usage and both will allow you to do the things you require. You can compare each version and it's functionality on the E-on web site though. The main differences between Infinite and xStreme are:
xStreme - Integrated solution that will work within the interface of 3ds Max, Maya, LightWave, Cinema 4D and Softimage. Although this can provide numerous work-flow advantages, there is always going to be a higher risk of encountering technical or compatibility issues as you have two separate pieces of software working together.
Infinite - This is the solution I would always choose, but that's just my opinion of course. This is a stand-alone version of the software. This means everything has to be imported/exported back and forth between the programs you use, which is obviously slower. However, as it is a stand-alone version. There should be far less chance of any technical / compatibility issues arising.
On a side note: You mentioned budget is an issue! If this is the case it may be worth pointing out that you will need some serious hardware to even attempt to render animated water, clouds or weather conditions. Render times can also be enormous too, so make sure you really look into this before making a purchase.
Hope that helps and all the best,
Hope that helps.
10-05-2010, 03:22 PM
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