Is Silo worth it?

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  06 June 2006
Is Silo worth it?

Hello to all you Silo users!
I'm very new to modelling in general, only recently having discovered Wings. Since then I've been modelling like crazy and for a long time I've considered 3D animation/game development my future career (I'm in what you Americans call highschool now). I've run across Silo on my internet ramblings and the $109 price is, compared to other professional modellers, a bargain. I understand that its only a promotional deal until 2.0 comes out, and then the prices will rise, probably very considerably. So would it be worth it for me to buy it now, me being an amatuer and a beginner? (If I do buy it, it will be within the next few days) Also, what is the workflow like? Is it similar to Wings, Blender or Hexagon (the only modellers I've tried)? I dont like Hexagon at all, especially the view config. Is the learning curve very steep like blender or is it moderatly simple like wings?
Your help will be greatly appreciated!
  06 June 2006
I recently purchased it... Cinema 4D is my main app, but I'm trying to improve on my modelling, and Silo just has some really slick workflow features. It's probably closest to Wings of the 3 you've mentioned, and no, it doesn't have a learning curve the size of Mt Everest like Blender You'd probably pick it up pretty quick.

A lot of people, like myself, have jumped on the "$109 now and 2.0 for free" bandwagon... if you go to the official silo forums you can find some great videos of the stuff coming up in 2.0 -- for me, the app is really worth it as is, and the stuff in 2.0 is just over the top icing on the cake.

I'd suggest trying out the demo... you can use it for 30 days. That's what I did. You can find a lot of good help on the official forums (the cgtalk silo forms aren't terribly active yet, unfortunately, but I suspect that'll change once 2.0 comes out) and find some good tutorials (video and html) as well as models to download and play around with on the Nevercenter Website (they're the guys that made Silo).

Like anything else, it comes down to personal preference... all those programs are great you mentioned... but for me, Silo had stuff they didn't. Like the scuplting features in 2.0 (I know Hex has some, but I believe if you change the model after sculpting you have to start over, Blender is getting some, though it's of a different nature, and I doubt Wings ever will have it!), the easy customization of the UI (again, check the silo forums for a ton of them), the ability to attach any command in the program to any combination of keys and mouseclicks, and just how it feels. It runs really well, and I expect 2.0 will run even better.

Now... having said all that... if you want something that'll render and paint on the models, you'll probably need something else. You can hook up an external renderer to Silo pretty easily, though. But you can always use Blender for renderings or whatnot.

hope this helps.
  06 June 2006
Thanks for the quick reply! I've been browsing the site and I really like what I'm seeing. I've just found and am now downloading the demo, so I'll see what its like over the next few days. The customizable user interface sounds awesome! Just another quick question, what renderers are you all using? I using like Yafary, but I'm not sure how compatible it is. Are there any good, relativly cheap renderers out there? Thanks!
  06 June 2006
Well, you can set up a Renderman type renderer (like 3Delight, Aqsis, Pixie or even Gelato if you have an NVidia card, all of which are free or offer a single user license for free) as the program export RIB files quite nicely. It also exports .3ds, .obj and several other formats, which you can import into Blender or just about anything else, if you want to bring something into a program and render it externally, which is probably what you'll want to do. The Renderman stuff is awesome, but unless you just want a basic render with some simple colored materials, you'll end up learning a lot more about Renderman than you want to.

I think most people have Silo in addition to a "regular/full functionality" 3D app, and they use that for rendering. I use Cinema 4D because that's what I bought/have to do other work with. Blender would work quite nicely for importing and rendering. You can also use demo versions of other prorgams (like Cinema 4D) if you're just trying to get a nice render and not too worried about saving the scene set up.

hope this helps...
  06 June 2006
its just 109$, a few pizzas cost more than that :P
  06 June 2006
Originally Posted by warpy: its just 109$, a few pizzas cost more than that :P

Haha, I'm in highschool man, a few pizza's will put me into negatives! That's why I'm asking if its worth it, for me this would be a big investment.

Anyway, I've got the demo and I really like it so far. The miria control setup is similar to wings, so I've not had much trouble adapting and the subdividing is a dream! No prgram I've tried so far has such nice, and most importantly, fast, subdividing. I'm working on a head at the moment (organics are very definatly not my forté, but its worth a try ) and I might just share when I'm finsihed

I have just a quick question regarding Instance mirroring: How do you make it "stick" like the Wings, freeze function? And how do you align selected vertices to an axis?


EDIT - Discovered the "Flatten tool"

Last edited by kfish2oo2 : 06 June 2006 at 08:08 PM.
  06 June 2006
To answer your first question. Yes.

Quote: I have just a quick question regarding Instance mirroring: How do you make it "stick" like the Wings, freeze function? And how do you align selected vertices to an axis?

I'm not too familiar with wings, but if I may assume - Delete the Instance and use Modify>Mirror to create a whole. (Silo 2.0 will have much improved symmetry modelling).

Align selected Verts - Modify>Flatten (... axis options) or numerical editor Scale(relevant axis)=0
  06 June 2006
Yeah it is worth it imo. I use wings, and silo has some important advantages over it.

1) faster. Not workflow wise, but framerate wise.
2) faster = more polys
3) Regular updates. Wings takes a long time to update.
4) Displacement map. It's kinda the new wave I guess. It'd be good to have something to practice on.

All views above are the expressed opinion of me. They do not necessarily reflect those of cgtalk, or its subsidiaries.
  06 June 2006
Hell yeah it's worth it...

I bought Hex 2 for $1.99 & I want my money back... (tis very weak & unstable)

Anyway Silo is awesome (1.42) & V2 looks to be a killer, I own XSI but prefer to model in Silo for it's simple interface & workflow, it's simply perfect, buy it you won't regret it...
  06 June 2006
Heres a screenshot of my first organic work in Silo. Thought I'd post it here instead of starting a new thread. C+C Welcome.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg untitled.JPG (30.9 KB, 10 views)
  06 June 2006
And heres the wire. I know its messy but I can find any way to clean it up without loosing shape. C+C Welcome.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg untitled1.JPG (59.8 KB, 12 views)
  06 June 2006
big investment lol. tell your mom to buy this for your birthday.. that will take care of things.
its educational, its future job. its something you need to invest and learn.
  06 June 2006
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