Should Maxon Provide A Free Version Of C4D ?


Interesting read, thank you. Blender really is impressive lately.


Well version 5.2 SE was free with PC Format magazine, the full unrestricted version that is. I remember seeing the magazine in my loft in the past year but I think it might have been one of the one’s I threw out in a clear out… the magazine that is, not the disk itself. I’ll have to check…but C4D 6 CE was free on a magazine with resolution restrictions, £100 to remove that restriction. C4D 5.2 was pretty primitive, resembling that of Deluxe Paint look with multiple windows… but it was logical and quite impressive with what could be achieved. God knows if it would run on Windows 7 and what it would look like though. There was also a version called C4D R5 GO, as well as C4D Artist Go versions… some strange spin off’s of how Cinema 4D developed in it’s younger years. I sense the tides are turning in the 3D market, and Maxon are gonna have to move with it… or else be left floating around in it’s own bubble… Providing a free version isn’t out of the realms of possibility if any restructuring is going to happen… Even in the world of Digital Audio Workstations ( DAW’s ), and video editing applications…free and inexpensive versions exist.

Hell, I’m editing a full film with what is essentially a clone of After Effects, Hitfilm Express… and that’s practically unrestricted freeware.


Actually. Quite a lot.
But I was thinking more along the lines of getting new people hooked on the software by giving them an older version with no limitations.
Then when they get into the habit of using it and liking it. They would be more interested in buying it to use the new stuff.
Plus it costs them nothing to do this. Except for the bandwith to DL it.

Asking them for a free version of R20 with only render size restrictions seems a bit too much to ask for to me.
Plus. If someone wants to try out the new stuff they can just DL the Demo. And even activate it for free for 45 days. They still offer this right?



Time is the most important thing , it is a waste to learn outdated technology, for me maybe more than others it is an irritation.
A PLE that allows anyone to make a showreel i think it is what might open doors for C4D, but needs to have all functionalities.
Demo i think it had 42 days dunno for R20 , but it is the problem of most demos, the clock is ticking even if a person is fully immersed in production and have no time or disposition at end of the day to open it.


If the people who want this were never going to give maxon a penny, then why would maxon do it?


^For the people that WOULD get hooked on it and eventually buy it.
Plus. It would be a nice PR gesture.
There’s a new guy in charge now. I can’t think of a better way to make yourself stand out from the old guard by giving away an old version for free. And tell people that MAXON is not just about treating people like ATM machines.

The users have been throwing money at them for years.
If the company is as profitable as they claim. Then IMHO. MAXON should do something nice for them in return. Even if they don’t have to.
New ownership is the perfect time to execute this.
I’m old school. Back in my day. Doing something for your users when you don’t need to and treating them like family was a business staple.
That idea has sadly gotten lost.



The major investment of a 3D application is usually not even its direct price cost but the investment in time a person has to do to learn it, so tell me why would anyone want to delve in an outdated R13 when there is Blender with a future in front and increasing critical mass? Plus why Maxon should spend resources “liberating” R13 instead of putting that resources into R21 ?


Despite the advancements in Blender, it has always felt to be a less than unified and accessible 3D application for most people. Much of that is down to it’s extremely dated UI and ad-hoc bespoke development of parts… and that doesn’t work for everyone…and people are getting gray hairs waiting for Blender to reach the solid standards of other competing 3D apps…it’s forever felt to be in a constant beta state… Maxon have been good at stripping features from their product line up to the discredit of the users of Cinema 4D, so it’s hardly going put their hair out of shape by providing a free version for people to use properly. Giving away version 13 which to all intents an purposes, isn’t that old isn’t what I’d suggest but a subset of tools that is viable to lay a path forward for the future generation of Cinema 4D users.

I started on a free version back in 2002… 5.2 SE, ( the latest was at that time version 8 ) I wasn’t a student, and I used it because it was most stable program of all that I had used…more so than Strata 3D and Truespace 2.0


The future generation of C4D users already exists.
It consists of any aspiring 3D artist’s who have No interest in Complex Character animation or film quality visual effects
who likely are committed Mac OS platform.

Apparently that is a growth area for Maxon .

Strategic planning always precedes the actual execution
of a marketing strategy.

Clearly the strategic planners at Maxon
,( or contracted by maxon),
See no long term benefit to any give way of old kit scheme
or they would be already doing it.


The current version of Blender (2.79) is still horrible. But you should test the beta version of 2.8. I’m impressed, they fixed most of the UI problems. It’s still not as friendly as C4D but I think it is even more accessible than MODO, Maya or 3ds Max.

When they release the final version of Blender 2.8 next year the 3d market will change. I predict most 3d apps will have to lower their prices (or at least offer free non-commercial versions) because of it. Blender will finally be usable.


There’s no per icon scaling functionality other than a global slider for everything which is poor. Even Cinema 4D R10 GUI flexibility is far superior, vertical tabs or not. I can’t see that changing by next year with Blender 2.8…sure the GUI is slowly getting there…but I still think Cinema 4D still holds the crown in that department of all the 3D apps out there…I’m not aware of any other 3D apps comparable other than Photoshop CS6 - (Whilst not strictly a 3D app itself entirely). With that, I think C4D and what this topic is about, would be a real competitor in this regard to what Blender is able to provide in this area in the future.


I agree generally with your rebuttal of the “Rant king”:smiley:
and that the two app system of LW is Bloody ridiculous.:rolleyes:

As a owner/user of both Maxon C4D s well as Lightwave 2015
I think it worth mentioning that its “CV” consist of more than just
Babylon 5 & Titanic

I know… Alot of 1990’s/early 2000’s productions.:blush:
and obviously Maya & Houdini now Dominate the VFX Market.

However I am finding the Lightwave 2015 VFX toolset a good value
for what I paid second hand for my seat.

Studio Feature Films
007 GoldenEye
(1995)-The World Is Not Enough
(1999) - Die Another Day (2002) - Skyfall (2012)
300 (2007)
A Thousand Words (film) (2012)
A.I. Artificial Intelligence (2001)
After Earth (2013)
Alice in Wonderland (2010)
Angels & Demons (2009)
Armageddon (1998)
Avatar (2010 Visual Effects and Art Direction Academy Awards)
Batman Begins (2005)
Black Hawk Down (2001)
Blade (1998) - Blade II (2002) - Blade: Trinity (2004)
Brotherhood of the Wolf (2001)
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005)
Deep Impact (film) (1998)
Eagle Eye (2008)
Elysium (film) (2013)
Fantastic Four (2005)
Ghost Rider (2007)
Hancock (film) (2008)
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (2004)
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (film) (2007)
Hellboy (2004)
His Dark Materials: The Golden Compass (2007)
Hotel for Dogs (film) (2009)
I, Robot (2004)
Iron Man(2008)
Jumper (2008)
Jurassic Park (1993 Visual Effects Academy Award) - Jurassic Park III
Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001) -
Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life (2003)
Looper (film) (2012)
Men in Black (1997)
Mortal Kombat (1995) - Mortal Kombat: Annihilation (1997)
Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005)
Muppets Most Wanted (2014)
Nanny McPhee (2005)
Nim’s Island (2008)
Old Dogs (film) (2009)
Pan’s Labyrinth (2006)
Panic Room (2002)
Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003) - Pirates
of the Caribbean: At World’s End (2007)
Pitch Black (film) (2000)
Poseidon (2006)
Race to Witch Mountain (2009)
Red Planet (film) (2000)
Repo Men (2010)
Safe (2012)
Scary Movie (2000) - Scary Movie 2 (2001) - Scary Movie 4 (2006)
Scooby-Doo (2002)
Serenity (2005)
Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows (2011)
Sin City (2005)
Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow (2004)
Spider-Man (2002) - Spider-Man 2 (2004) - The Amazing Spider-Man
Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002)
Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)
Superman Returns (2006)
Teeth (2007)
Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003)
The Adventures of Tintin (2011)
The Aviator (2004)
The Cell (2000)
The Conjuring (2013)
The Dark Knight (2008)
The Day After Tomorrow (2004)
The Fifth Element (1997)
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011 film) (2011)
The Hunger Games (2012)
The Italian Job (2003 film) (2003)
The Last Samurai (2003)
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003)
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003)
The Matrix Reloaded (2003) - The Matrix Revolutions (2003)
The One (2001)
The Pianist (2002)
The Road (2009)
The Ruins (2008)
Titanic (1997 Visual Effects Academy Award)
Tropic Thunder (2008)
Vampires Suck (2010)
Van Helsing (2004)
Wind River (film) (2017)
X-Men (2000) - X2 (film) (2003) - X-Men 3: The Last Stand (2006)

TV films and independent movies
Battlestar Galactica: Blood & Chrome (2012)
Café (2011)
Cargo (2009 film)
Dante 01 (2008)
Iron Sky (2012)[22]
Sharknado (2013)
Sharknado 2: The Second One (2014)
Space Station 76 (2014)
TV Series and miniseries
24 (2001–2010)
Alias (TV series)
Babylon 5 (1993 Visual Effects Emmy Award)
Battlestar Galactica (2007, 2008 Visual Effects Emmy Award)
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Caprica (TV series)
Chase (2010 TV series)
CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
CSI: Miami
Dark Angel (TV series)
Defiance (TV series)
Dexter (TV series)
Do No Harm (TV series) (2013)
Firefly (TV series)
FlashForward (2009-2010)
Frank Herbert’s Dune (2001 Visual Effects Emmy Award)
Frank Herbert’s Children of Dune (2003 Visual Effects Emmy Award)
Fringe (TV series)
Grey’s Anatomy
Grimm (TV series)
Hercules: The Legendary Journeys
Lost (2005 Visual Effects Emmy Award; 2004–2010)
Miami Medical
Mike & Molly
Mob City
Nashville (2012 TV series)
NCIS (TV series)
NCIS: Los Angeles
Once Upon a Time (TV series)
Outcasts (TV series)
Power Rangers Lost Galaxy
RoboCop: The Series
Rome (TV series)
seaQuest DSV (1993–1996)
Sleepy Hollow (TV series)
Space: Above and Beyond
Star Trek: Deep Space Nine (1993–1999)
Star Trek: Enterprise (Emmy Award nominee) (2001–2005)
Star Trek: Voyager (1999, 2001 Visual Effects Emmy Award)
Stargate SG-1 (Emmy Award nominee; 1997–2007)
Taken (TV miniseries)
Teen Wolf (2011 TV series)
Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles
Terra Nova (TV series)
The 4400
The Big Bang Theory
The Cape (2011 TV series)
The Orville( 2017)
The Outer Limits (1995–2002)
The Walking Dead (TV series) (2010–present)
The Visitor (TV series)
The X-Files (2000 Visual Effects Emmy Award)
Time After Time (TV series) (2017)
V (2009–2011)


Ok, but what in these films? I’ve seen far too many “C4D used in new film X!” claims, only to discover somebody extruded a spline for a 3D logo somewhere.


Hey, sorry to hijack this thread, but it is related to the topic:

My target group for 3D work is a vast army of fantasy and roleplay folk. All these are hungry for cool and quickly made animations of their characters.
I urge MAXON to have a continuous focus on this. I sometimes feel they underestimate the market here. Gamer folk and fandom ppl have money.
They want to spend it for seeing their dreams and ideas come true (at least virtually).

I mean a free version to get started and to hook new userbases is a possible route. If it is a wise one, I can’t say. But I would really suggest to have an eye on character animation, too.
Maybe both ideas can be combines, like a cinema-based character chreator, which has limited capabilities, but introduces the C4D look and feel and workflow to have more user stick to C4D in the end… dunno that is just a spontaneous thought.


Not free… however No monthly rental or annual service payments