I think Maxon is trying to get me to switch to Maya or XSI....


I really don’t want to get in the middle of this, but there are many things to consider other than the price and the actual features that are included.

I’ve never used Maya or XSI but I have watched quite a few tutorial movies and I’ve noticed lots of times to do a similar task in Cinema is SO much easier. The Object Manager in Cinema alone is worth getting it over the other two. With the click of a dot or a drop and drag or a few simple tags and you can turn on and off visibilty, rendering, symmetry, expressions, hypernurbs, etc. Those seem to me to take many steps in the other programs.

As difficult as it may be for some, Xpresso HAS to be much easier to use than MEL scripts or their XSI equivelents.

And I haven’t even touched upon the “cool” features…

My 2 cents…


Ownership of software, or to put it correctly the licence to use the software can be easily be distorted in ones mind to suit your own take or priority but its really quite clear what is the meaning of the licence agreement, one user, one active working copy, at any one time.

Back up copies are exactly that - a back up in case the original is damaged or lost.

You own the media the software is supplied on and a licence to use it, not the software itself. This goes for any program not just Maxon.

If software is licenced to a company as opposed to an individual any one individual employed within that company can use that one copy, installed on one machine.

Much the same in a domestic situation. I purchased my copy of Cinema 4D as an individual, I can use it, my daughter, or anybody else can use it but as it’s only installed on one machine so no infringement of the licence is taking place. I can’t use it while she does.

You may well have access and use of a company vehicle from work but that does not mean your children, even with a full driving licence are covered to drive that vehicle if you decide to bring it home.

Let’s not fool around here, it’s only peoples abuse of a well intentioned scheme by software manufacturers that push up the price or tighten the rules.

I was a little upset to see, after installing the free cover mount copy of Cinema 6CE, how feature rich it was for a “free program” but it was marketing on Maxon’s part and that’s business. Give the copy away and those serious about it will upgrade one day to the latest version. It’s a policy all software companys adopt.

As pointed out students get a lot of benefits and if its related to the career path they are undetaking rightly so. Of course if they don’t pursue that career then they keep the software.

They’ve lost more than they’ve gained. Keeping hold of a piece of software, which after time will outdated by better faster, more feature rich versions in no way compensates for the valuable years of life wasted whilst in education on a career not pursued.

I’ve noticed a large majority of users of Cinema are doing 3D as a hobby rather than as employment. Great to see, and excellent work done as well, better than some of the professionals, but my chosen hobbies does not get me special treatment or discount on goods or equipment because its a hobby, or related to my income.

I’ll admit the school situation needs looking at to ensure a fair deal for all. Maybe like my copy of Vectorworks, using a dongle key could be one solution.


these companies don’t offer educational licensing out of the goodness of there hearts…it to catch users early then when they go into industry they can use there packages and may even demand these packages for use…eg long term sales strategy in reality.
either you decide to compete or not thats the decision…for a student price is a major factor in their purchase decision as well as whether its in there curriculum.

i’d say offering a educational license at the right price is something maxon aspire to:

dunno really…its not an area that affects me really…so i’m less worried by it that others bud i can understand some frustration on both sides of the fence…maxon annoyed by bending of the rules…and users at cost. hopefully both can come to a useful compromise.


Sure, that is one of C4D’s strongest points, ease of use. No denying it is a great piece of software, and my numero 1 choice. BUt, you have to admit that it is pretty tough justifying having to pay 2x as much for c4d studio bundle than you do for Xsi advanced, student versions… after all the full version of Xsi advanced is over twice as expensive as C4D’s Studio bundle… this is based on what other people have quoted before, I have not checked the prices - I am not a student anymore.
I agree with what was said before though, a student version of a software should be seen ideally as a long term investment; there is more than just the price to look at. That said, the price does matter, especially for someone new to 3d who has little preference what app he uses ( though you should look at the specifics of the pricing for the dif. apps’ student versions , as some might have quite a bit of restrictions. and also look at the price of the full app…)


This is my first post at CGT, so be nice if I seem to offend anyone. I have been doing systems stuff for 15 years and been in the graphics/3d hobby for 20. I remember when Apple was supplying highly discounted equipment to schools. The net effect of this marketing move was to create market share that would continue to purchase their equipment because that was what the students and staff had grown comfortable with. However, one major issue with Apple is that their hardware is proprietary and is, compared to WinTel solutions, much more expensive. I see the same thing with 3D apps.

I purchased a full version of Studio recently. I’m having a great time with it. For a long time I was using trueSpace. I started with the lower end teaser product at version 4.0 and kept upgrading through 6.6 and ProTeam. I added up all the money I spent over time to have a product that was very good in some areas, but has serious stability and interface issues, and was shocked. I had spent as much on an inferior product as I could have for Cinema in the first place. It was time for a change. I could have used my wife’s status of being an educator to get the “discount” but decided not to since I could get a full commercial version of a complete 3D package for thousands less than say Maya, XSI, lightwave, etc.

I have a lot to learn and that is why I am here at CGTalk. My own experience is use the demos to see if you like the product, do some homework and decide on a package. Then if you are serious, buy the package at what ever level you like and support the development team. At least with Cinema I got the power and grace of a commercial professional 3D app for a lot less money than the competitors. Well worth the piece of mind that I can morally, ethically, and legally produce what ever I want to with the software.


the problem is that if i compare the XL bundle alone with


the problem is that if i compare the XL bundle alone with Maya Unlimited or XSI advanced, it’s really not even a fair comparison. The studio bundle is what can go head to head with these, In my opinion…

About the student pricing being a long term investment… I agree 100%…

For example… when it’s time for purchasing new software/upgrading the current one at tha company I work at, they’ll ask me which to buy. Of course I’ll get them to buy whatever software I have more experience with and have acces to my educationl copy and manuals to fool around and train at home.

In that case I won’t consider If it costs 10x as more, as I’m not paying for it, the company is.



“For example… when it’s time for purchasing new software/upgrading the current one at tha company I work at, they’ll ask me which to buy. Of course I’ll get them to buy whatever software I have more experience with and have acces to my educationl copy and manuals to fool around and train at home.”

I’m confused, you say you are a student yet you mention “the company you work at”. Are you a student not earning a wage or a working employee? No offence but you don’t sound like a student to me, but somebody who is working. Also they may not take your choice and go with somebody else’s software choice.

Also you are taking it for granted you will only work at this one place and you’ll not work with any other company using different software. Goes back to what’s been said before, buy what you need for the long term future not the short financial gain.

Okay here is another situation. You get the firm to buy the software, you use it, then you decide to go freelance, working for yourself, then have to buy the software. Cost for full copies will matter then don’t you think.

I’m not saying you should buy Cinema but don’t just judge it on face value cost.


Does being a working employee automatically exclude me from also being a student? well of course not, I’m actually working to pay for my studies… I can’t believe I’m the first person you’ve heard of that works and studies… not everyone has rich parents to pay for their university degrees.


Sorry if I’m just a bit uneducated on the other software packages, but I don’t quite understand the problem. The Studio version of Cinema just includes BodyPaint, Dynamics, Sketch & Toon and Net Unlimited on top of the XL version, right?

It makes perfect sense that BodyPaint wouldn’t be included, as it’s totally incomparable to the other packages. No student has a need for Net Unlimited (do they?!? man, if I could have afforded unlimited rendering boxes when I was a student…), and as far as I understand Sketch & Toon is pretty unique as well. I know there’s a good NPR renderer for one of the other packages, but I didn’t think it was included. So the only module really missing to make good comparisons is Dynamics, right? So maybe the argument could be made to get Dynamics added to the $295 educational package.

As for student pricing in general, I think it would be silly not to offer it. People not already strongly interested in 3D probably won’t drop thousands of dollars on a 3D package. However, if there’s a cheaper version available, they might. So even if it stops there, the company makes more money then it would have without the student version. However, sometimes those people will decide they want to incorporate 3d into the other things they’re doing. That’s what happened for me–I studied graphic design and, although my college had no 3d offerings, I picked up a copy of Cinema and liked it. When I graduated, I bought the commercial version. If I hadn’t tried it as a student, I never would have purchased the commercial version, and Cinema would be lacking both my money from when I was a student, and my money now.

Some people just seem angry that they paid full price for software that other people don’t have to pay full price for. Get off it. You can do whatever you want with that software. The students who plan on using it after graduation will have to pay just as much as you. The only thing I could see is students who buy it and decide not to use the software commercially after graduation, so stick with their educational version. Maybe you should be asking Maxon to put a 4 year time limit on educational versions? But again, those peoples’ software will quickly become outdated and meaningless, and they will either want to upgrade it (and will pay full price), or they will discard 3d altogether.

Just my thoughts.



[Some people just seem angry that they paid full price for software that other people don’t have to pay full price for.]

I hope you are not refering to me, as I 'm glad to see any student wishing to create a career in 3D encouraged by software companys in the form of student versions of software.

What I do object to is anybody, not just students, bending the rules to suit their own wants, then crying foul when the manufacturers wise up to what’s happening and either tighten the rules or change them.

You make some very valid points with regard to the packages, what they include and what a student would need and I agree with you 100%.

It’s been said before, don’t just take what’s on offer at face value, the package you will need costs a lot less by the sounds of it. As said, as a student why would you need things like net unlimited ?

I purchased the basic module, in fact that was the deciding factor to get Cinema for me, I could buy just the parts that I required to do the job, with the option to add if need be later. I thought this was a great idea, still do. Brought Bodypaint, which was on special offer and am very tempted by Sketch and Toon.

Of course I’ve heard of students working to cover their costs in study, I myself had to work evening, weekends and holidays to keep myself at school when I was sixteen through to eighteen years of age, but never got the chance to go on to university or art school.

Again we get to the problem of rule bending. Somebody working full time but taking part time classes is not eligible in my opinion, even if it is as part of their job. If that’s the case the boss should be buying it for you along with the training cost !!

Want to try the software but not pay for it fine, Maxon will give you a free demo copy.


Sorry to (dis)agree, but the starter of this thread is indeed comparing apples and oranges. Cinema 4D is a tool that serves a goal, namely producing animations. There are other tools like XSI, Maya or Max that serve exactly the same purpose. Each of these tools, however, is geared towards a certain part of the CGI spectrum.

What you a doing is making the sum of the respective feature lists, compare that to the price of that feature list, and conclude which one is actually the best buy for your buck. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. Not once was it mentioned what the applications you are considering were meant to do. Do they have to be used for Character animation? Do you need advanced texturing and UV-editing? Is it the quality of the render engine? Ease of use? Speed? Special FX?

First decide what it is you want to do with the package. Then check which one suits you the best. Then check the price. Comparing Maya Unlimited to a full blown XSI and a complete LightWave or C4D Studio Bundle doesn’t mean squat if you want good NFR possibilities, because neither of those offer decent NFR capabilities.

Kind regards,



in a lot of countries, it is very common that you study while working.
i myself worked as an professional architect full time in an architecture office, while still studying architecture(took some time;-).

thr same thing is with graphic designers and so on.

thats quite usual in austria at least.

if you are a student you get the studentversion as long as you donnot use it commercially its ok. a student version cost 99 euros here, a very good deal to learn the software.

maxon even gave me rabatt when i later bought the full studiobundle.




If you were working as a professional architect but studying your not classed as a full time student in my opinion, sorry. You’ve got a wage coming in and a job, like serving as an apprentice. I assume you were being paid to work as a professional architect?

People in this country also study whilst working.

If it’s a program to be used in your work then it should be provided by the company you work for along with any training or training cost required.

You could argue that this is to increase your qualifications but I could say the same.

I worked for many years using drawing board, pens and magic markers to create my designs and visuals. As time went on clients wanted computer generated visuals, working drawings. So to increase my qualifications ( to keep earning a living more to the point) I had to learn CAD and other associated computer programs.

Because I was learning these but working full time as a professional would I be classed as a student, I think not. Discounts, special schemes, no way. Some tax relief maybe.

What work would you be doing on your program, surely related to your projects or even at your place of work, so this in my book breaks the clear rule “not for commercial use.”

I’m not getting at you, possibly the people you work for. You will after all be a more valuable and worthwhile member of staff with these increased capabilities but they may see it as you’ll train and then get a better job elsewhere. If its for the work you do then the company should supply it.

Students go to college, university in this country and the programs for the course are supplied on the computers, some will even buy alternatives if they are convinced of the value of these within the course structure. Students can get student versions of the software to continue their course work and studies at home.

When you work either in your holidays, evenings, weekends or work experience at a commercial office/studio or at your first job position the equipment is supplied for you. If you are earning money from design etc at home using the programs during your holidays, evenings, weekends etc. freelance then its commercial use.

You can’t have your cake and eat it.



first you are not maxon, this is only your opinion if i deserved it or not, ok?

second, the company i worked for then has full seats of all software they use( at that time i used maya formz, 3dmax, acad at work not c4d.

third sure i got paid, but thats not the point. i did use c4d for my projects at univercity, and i loved it so much that i bought it when i opened my own firm.

and i think this is what maxon wants - to gain new users. i converted to cinema and i bought the studiobundle.

so at the end both are happy, (only you seem to be angry :wink:



ps. student prizes are not social wellfare form software companies but the get new users.



As you can see from my last email and as always stated, its my opinion. This is a forum, part of which is for discussion, which you or I put forward our opinions, experiences etc. which in turn may result in others agreeing or disagreeing. No offence intended, none taken.

This thread has taken a slight sideways track on the ethics of what qualifies as a student/educational entitlment. Brammelo got it right and back on track in his post with regard to asking the capabilities needed for the job etc. in answering the original posts comments about pricing.

Where do you get the idea I’m angry about this, fed up maybe, of people complaining about not being able to get software cheap.

The whole point of subsidised software is as you say, to get people using it , then upgrade as you and I did to full licence copies, not for people to scheme up a way of getting software on the cheap.

Like I said, I’m not having a go at you just stating my opinion on how I see it and see no reason to change that opinion.

Thank goodness nasty old me is not in charge of the licencing department at good old Maxon ;~)

All the best



is ok, peace :wink:



wow guys, good to you see not getting out of hand but sticking to strong held opinions.

there are a few issues here which don’t help in the discussion and help cloud the issue…

what is a reasonable price for an educational license?
what the competition prices there software at?
comparisions of versions available for competing software?
who should qualify for educational licenses?
company ethics & personal ethics and abuse of current systems?
student user needs?
all these in there own right warrant discussion in singularity.

i would say no one condones software licensing abuse…so you have to assume poster are not doing so or advocating this in anyway…give people the benefit of the doubt…this is after all a professional forum.

On this note maybe it would be better whether we answer the question of the thread in a more focussed way:
"I think Maxon is trying to get me to switch to Maya or XSI… "

financially it makes more sense for him to jump ship…

my answer:
i don’t think Maxon would want you jump ship
i assume Maxon want students learning c4d
But its not purely a financial decision when buying any 3d software or even a wordprocessor.
contact maxon and see if they feel your pain is my advice…if not…and you consider financial decision your bottom line…then jump ship…or re-evaluate your initial reason for switching.

cheers…keep the peace…one love…


Why don’t you just download the free Maya PLA or XSI Learning Edition and save $800?

I can’t see why anyone would pay $800 for a student license when the above two products are completely free.



If I was a student I’d buy XSI for what, $300? How could anyone pass that up?