Xsi ???


Horreee Crap!!!

I just got around to looking at some of the vid examples of XSI & yeah, it’s probably a neat app and all, but geez…look at the GUI…reminds me of Lightwave hell. Whatever happened to making the user COMFORTABLE! :sad:

Yeah, I know, I don’t know what I’m ragging about. A lot of other users will say that neato little icons & such are for weenies, and a stark interface for the experienced user is NECESSARY!!! BLEAK IS GOOD!!! WITH MANY BEVELED OR MAYBE NON-BEVELED BUTTONS!!!

I am not an experienced user of any 3D package, I will freely admit this factoid…but…and it’s a mighty big BUTT…out of the 5 packages I have used (in order…drumroll please…Macromedia’s Extreme 3D - 3D Studio Max - Lightwave (only tested) - Electric Image Universe & yes, Cinema 4D 8.5…Maxons product just makes the most sense to me. I like it’s friendly atmosphere & powerful tools.

I don’t think I would want to use XSI just looking at the interface. I mean, yeah, I know that the big boys don’t need any eye candy, but sometimes you gotta have a little fun with what you do, right?

Now, if I can just upgrade to v.9 without having to up the whole studio package!

Woo-Hoo! Too many beers gents…must depart…



hmmm im a long time cinema4d user. and u know what? im just moving to xsi. after a month of work with it… i think it’s the best gui ever designed. i was never able to work so fast in any software before. and i was not using c4d for doing a chess or simple balls. ive made many and i really mean many tv spots with c4d. and ill be still using it for some stuff. but for now… lemme go back to xsi :wink:

just my 2 c.


This is certainly moving in the right direction. A couple of years ago, no-one would have dared to compare C4D with XSI. Softimage and Alias, and to a lesser extent Discreet, were gods to most 3D adepts. C4D was that little thingy with an Amiga past. Guess what: Maya’s price went down, and so did XSI’s. And now people finally start comparing things. The efforts Maxon made are slowly starting to pay off.


duffl: are you finding texturing/shaders as easy as in cinema 4d ?.. also does XSI 4 have shader balls/presets now ? and if so how do you access them thx


Yes, XSI now has shader balls, and you can save your custom shaders in shelves. You can also see your shader flow with preview icon on the nodes themselves.

I wouldn’t call shading in XSI easy, but it is very powerful. Once you get the hang of it you will not know how you lived without it.



The price cut for XSI does several things.

  1. absolutely ruined the day for Cinema 4D
  2. Just in time for college kids to buy, afford and make money from while at college
  3. If college kids are going to use it business, especially startups, can take advantage of
    the ready made, cheap talent and crank out daily products.
  4. College families(UNC Charlotte, UNC Asheville, UNC Wilimington, etc) can start pooling their talent and work across Universities to turn out MAJOR creative projects. Just like they already do for medical R&D
  5. OTHER companies in this space(LW, CINEMA, MAYA, ALIAS, etc) WILL HAVE TO REDUCE their prices.
  6. I guess I will be buying XSI instead on bodypaint3D. Same price now


Yeah, what tjnyc said. Btw, XSI is my primary application but guess what… I’m planning to get C4D later this year. Hah… Somebody tell me that 2 years ago, I would tell them to take a hike :slight_smile:

  1. Not quite
  2. It is not that easy, talent and professionalism is what gets you the jobs, not the software you use.
  3. Look at answer number 2.
  4. What this things about College. There is already a fantastic education deal for XSI Advanced with no limitation, just can’t use it for commercial usage.
  5. Not neccessarily, but it would be nice.
  6. Apples and Oranges. BodyPaint and DeepPaint are competitive products not XSI and BP. You can’t paint in 3D with XSI, not with the current version anyway.


"4. What this things about College. There is already a fantastic education deal for XSI Advanced with no limitation, just can’t use it for commercial usage. "

You hit it on the head. “just can’t use it for commercial usage”.
They NOW can afford XSI and MAKE MONEY on it. What ZERO is going to use a student copy when he make money from a version that’s affordable.


LOL. You’re assuming that just because they own a commercial software that they will make money from it, man wouldn’t that be great if it was true.


I’ve used Cinema4D, XSI, Maya and Lightwave. In terms of GUI, this is the order i put them in:

  1. C4D
  2. XSI
  3. MAYA
  4. Lightwave

I had a look at 3dsmax around 2 yrs ago, didn’t really use it much, although i would still place it above Lightwave anyway.

The Cinema 4D interface is so simple. Everything makes sense. It’s the easiest app to learn just by mucking around.

As for XSI’s interface… i don’t mind it at all. I think it’s pretty damn cool, although the amount of options in certain windows can be daunting at times, heh.

Used Lightwave at Uni last semester. Thumbs down.

Started learning Maya these semester after starting a new course(transferred uni’s). The UI could be cleaned up a fair bit, made a bit more compact, but in general… it’s good to work with.


If XSI had a right click or quad type menu I’d say it’s number one, but unless you learn keyboard shortcuts it seems like you have to mouse all over the place. I’d love to see a context sensitive menu like max/maya.

The new menu in c4d9 is pretty cool though. The one right click menu is a tad big though, would have rather seen that done in a quad format to keep it from taking up so much vertical screen real esate and having to move the mouse so far. But it’s definately a leap ahead.


well i’m certainly tempted by the offer…needs more investigating on my part…would be a big commitment having invested so much time and money in c4d and i’m unlikely to be able to afford both at the same time unfortunately, i guess if there was ever a time to jump ship it would be now for me i have to think a few years ahead if that possible in 3d the way things are moving. arrh well choices choices…we shouldn’t complain about things like that as consumers its good…from a maxon point of view it shows they are doing the right things…recent developments have mean’t comparision are viable i guess, but would be a wrench to move, but at the end of the day i have to look after my interests and needs …despite me loving c4d. in reality i have to ask whether its viable what i do currently in c4d i can do in xsi…its plugins like ditools/jenna/loco/xfrog which i would imagine are impossible to replace and invaluable for abstract work…dunno…need to think and investigate i think.

interesting times as i keep saying…


with regards to XSI, I think switching might have made sense before R9 (still might if you make a living from CG), but with SPD, cloth and the new poly tools in R9, XSI and its workflow don’t look so special to me anymore (it still has great character animation tools though). SPD also does wonders in closing some of the gap between C4D rendering and Mental Ray I think. It was quite difficult to get good surface definition with C4D’s bump mapping before, versus Mental Ray, which seems to bring a photoreal touch to anything as long as you have high quality textures and dial in the right sampling settings. SPD changes things quite a bit as far as C4D rendering is concerned I’d say. really adds a lot of extra detail to things, and the fact that lighting and shadows take SPD into account (i.e. its not a faked displacement effect) seems to help bring out the depth in C4D renders.

the new gestural menu in R9 takes a bit of getting used to, but might be really good for learners I think (when lost, hold down ‘V’ and look at what’s available). beats the hell out of having to show people where in the UI different commands live. :beer:


It’s crazy how people who normally would have never given c4d a second glance is now interested in taking a closer look, and in some cases, making a purchase or two. I kept hoping that r9 would include cloth, and BOOM there it is. :slight_smile: I still wonder though how c4d is with character animation, even with the new mocca 2 out. Plus, I remember people complaining about motion blur in c4d’s renderer. I wonder if this has been improved upon.

I’ve been trying out EVERY program out there for the past couple of months and I still can’t seem to narrow my choices down… with the release of r9, c4d has jumped back into the game, that’s for sure.

I LOVE XSI. I took a semester at coyote3d.com and got familiar with it. I love the new price drop, but it just feels kinda limiting. Say someone buys Foundation for $495, but wants hair. They’ve gotta shell out $7k for hair? If only there was a hair plugin available for Foundation users… not to mention syflex. Or for cheaper, grab a copy of c4d r9 and mocca2, and you’ll get clothilde (which people are saying is comparable to syflex.)

What I wanna see before I can REALLY make up my mind is to see some COMPLEX character animation done in both xsi and c4d (the top programs i’m looking at at the moment) and also comparisons of their renderers. I know mental ray’s really good, but I also know that c4d’s is fast. I need comparisons! Someone do some tests and get out a stop watch and time them both. PLEASE!? And post the final renders, too… :thumbsup:


I will second that motion. Also with C4D, it is much cheaper to build a render farm. Is that right? Well, like somebody else said, with Mental Ray, you have to rob a bank first. Hey, wouldn’t it be cool if C4D supported distributed rendering (or what SoftImage calls satelite rendering)


I’m also in the “C4Dr9-or-XSI” camp. I’ve got a freelance job coming up (which I could actually do with C4D CE since its low-rez QTVR) & want to upgrade my educational copy Cinema4D. The cost to do so is exactly the cost of XSI/Foundation. I’m still a newbie @ C4D and never used XSI (though I’ve use 3DStudio & MAX since '95), so I have little/no investment in either app.

Here are the things I’m weighing (this list will change as I look more into it):

XSI/Foundation pros:

  • toon shader.
  • perceived value as ‘big boy’ used in hi-end productions

C4D core pros:

  • great intergration with Photoshop & After Effects
  • Xpresso

I can get some level of Pshop/AE intergration with XSI using scripts, but I don’t think it will be as good as C4D.

I’m not a pure 3D person…I do mostly motion graphics so I need I 3D app that I can jump in-and-out of quickly. From what I’ve seen, C4D fits this bill nicely. Just gotta play with XSI demo I guess (in all my free time :slight_smile:


IMO: For the sort of work you describe - 3D based motion graphics etc, C4D is the hands-down winner. No question.

Mike A.


Thanks, Mike…that’s helpful.

I’d have to say another thing in C4D’s favor is that, even though you have to pay xtra for toon shading, I think its toon shading is better than the examples I’ve seen of XSI’s toon shading.


Well, I probably have a biased opinion … but Sketch+Toon is arguably the best cel renderer out there.
I would also think that C4d is well suited for what you describe.
Modelling has been really improved from what I have seen from the v9 demo, and definitely at teh top end of teh list for polygon/SubD modelling.
I also think C4d is really easy to learn compared to other doft.( I have used max and maya for projects before .)
Plus you can upgrade to the Xl or studio bundle later…( ex unlimited render nodes, which you wouldn’t get with Mental ray…)
as far as the ‘Big studio effect’, c4d is being used more and more - growing quite well.