max1.0 1996 demo vids


1996…13 years ago!

                   3dsmax was born!                     

                                        i’ve put the demo cd of 3dsmax1 up on youtube cos i couln’t find it on youtube!                     

                                        3dsmax1 octobeer 1996

                                        character studio 1 october 1996

                                        if autodesk don’t like me doing that tell me and i’ll delete the vids

                   but i thought it was really cool to look back 13 years and still be impressed with 3dsmax 1.0


Haha sweet!

“3d Studio Max makes it easy to create an infinite number of effects” I like it:D


Why would they want to remove it, that was pretty good for a first version!!
I don’t remember who but somebody told me that first version was in dos …is that dos ?



no 3ds was ‘dos’ as in 3d studio dos…
3dsmax was 3d studio max and ran on windows95, nt4


Ho, then I would really like to see 3ds studio dos :scream:



here ya go!


omg… that’s really old :slight_smile:
but it resemble a lot through, nice to know from where it come!

Thank for the link,


Here you go:


Classic! I like the popup “Oh God hurry up” – 1 minute and 26 seconds for that render!

Haha I had no idea Hold/Fetch were that old :slight_smile:


I’m just curious, what was the mean of scripting back then ?



Well, given that 3ds DID NOT HAVE UNDO (!), Hold and Fetch were your best friends. :slight_smile:


Release 4 had a Keyframe scripting language (for animation only). It was licensed from a developer who had a full scripting language for 3ds, but Autodesk decided to add only the animation module to the shipping product.

Max 1.0 did not have any scripting either, except for the Expression controllers which were kind of like simple scripting.

We had to wait until 1997 for MAXScript to get bundled with MAX R2 (but it was in Beta during Max 1.0 days).


It’s funny actually how little stuff has changed since then.

I mean, it was only the latest release that even changed the button graphics.


Not true. The Max 1.0 icons were 15x16 and in 16 colors only and completely hard-coded in the application. No customization whatsoever was possible (except via the SDK).

In 1999, Max R3 introduced the CUI concept with customizable truecolor 24x24 pixel icons and MacroScripts on toolbars, but you could not change the color scheme of the application. The shipping icons were designed by Brandon Riza and I wrote a custom icon maker script which I still use for my icons creation (Krakatoa and stuff). A set of “classic icons” replicating R1/R2 also shipped but I don’t know anyone using them.

Max R4 introduced the ability to customize Keyboard Shortcuts, Menus, Quad Menus (which were also new) and Toolbars using the same MacroScripts that could use the custom icons from R3, AND allowed the Color customization which let Discreet immediately introduce a dark scheme with its own specially designed black and white icons reminiscent of Combusion and other similar products. So this was the 3rd set of icons in 4 releases.

There was some redesigning of icons for the Command panel and UI controls a couple of years ago, but I lost track when exactly (I am human, too).

Fast forward to 2010 where the dark scheme became officially the default for Max Entertainment (Max Design shipping with the light one) and which started replacing the icons for the forth time with ones inspired by Autocad and Co. On top of that, the color scheme of Windows can now be supported natively (but it gave us AA fonts which I am not crazy about).

I still like the R3 icons best.


I like the new dark theme, especially the timeline and the button with light gray text is cool but the toolbar icon are a bit weird …maybe it because they are white , I think they could use some color but that’s my opinion :slight_smile:

another thing I like to mention about the black theme is that it make the listener redraw bug worst, it flash gray and that a lot more visible than with the light theme. am I the only one with this bug? …I haven’t saw it mentioned before!

Do you thing Autodesk is still distributing 3d studio dos, a demo or something legal … I would run this on my old pentium, just for the fun :slight_smile:



You would actually need some emulation and a real DOS installation - 3ds DOS was very difficult to run on Windows NT 3.51 and 4 and practically impossible to run on Windows 2000 and later. Plus it used a parallel port dongle (I still have mine, but no parallel port to plug it into). With the popularity of Virtual Machines, I assume it would be possible to get something running… I have not tried.
Autodesk does not distribute older versions of their software, not even Max. Good luck finding 3ds DOS legally :slight_smile:


Yes, it an old 486 updated with a evergreen pentium processor and it run in dos only… I don’t know if it still work through :slight_smile:

well, I think I stick with the video preview then :slight_smile:



Thanks for the video, very interesting.


Yep, the Key Script Extensions were an IPAS that was actually pretty useful. Key Fractory was an early rigid body dynamics system that used this IPAS, if I recall. My only production use of it was back in 1995 to make fake volumetric light cones (we didn’t have instancing back then). You’d run the script and it would look at spot lights and build geometric cones with a linear gradient falloff based on their hotspot parameters. When MAX shipped a year later with volumetric lighting, I gave up on my ridiculous script that would fake volumetric shadows by doing a series of booleans on the light cones.

Ah man, the old days…


Oh and on the Windows NT thing, indeed you needed a dual-boot setup if you wanted to run 3ds DOS and MAX. In fact, MAX didn’t support Windows 95 on it’s first release - that came just a little bit later.

The specs on my system back in 1995 were: Pentium 120, 64MB RAM, 120MB hard drive, 21" monitor, Matrox Millenium video card and the Vibrant Drivers (came with a dongle too). That was a beefy machine back then and close to $7000