Best Free 3D?

I heard Blender is a good free 3D software. Does anyone have any others they can recommend?

There are others but Blender is by far the best 3D rendering product that falls under the category of free and open source, it’s not really worth saying others.

Unless you want to start shelling out cash for high end stuff like Maya or 3DStudioMax or Cinema4D, you should give it a try :slight_smile:

Most of the big 3d software packages (3ds Max, Maya, FormZ, etc) offer free 30 day trials - so it would be smart to try them all to get a feel for what you like and don’t like in a 3d package.

I used to use Rhino years ago - it was free back then, but I’m not sure about it now (and I’m too lazy at the moment to look it up). Good piece of software though.

Why do you need a 3D software?
For professional use? Personal use?

Thanks for the replies.
I want to try to get into 3d animation as a professional. Right now I just can’t afford to purchase anything expensive. :nono:

3DS Max and Blender is to awesome tools I’ve been using for some time during studies. Else is Google SketchUp something worth taking a look at!

Start with blender, learn the jargon, the general techniques needed with any 3D software, then probably move to some “stronger” yet expensive software. If you mainly want to work on 3D animation projects then I would suggest Maya as I find it to be the most powerful 3D modeler and renderer for animation (even if 3Ds is good too).

Am I the only person who likes Cinema4D? It’s just as powerful as Maya and 3D Studio Max… though I’ve only played with them on a trial basis.

PS: Maya Learning Edition is free for non commercial uses (though is no longer supported)

Cinema4D is really good too and for beginner and Intermediates it is just as powerful as Maya or 3Ds However I believe that for the advanced (or let’s say very advanced) level Maya and 3Ds are just a bit more powerful…

For those familiar with Blender, is it possible to use it for web design? I am looking for something better than GIMP to create gradients, textures, or whatever, to use as website graphics.

Cheese, it’s a 3D product… you do know what 3D graphics are right? Stuff like Pixar animations and the kind of movies you see which are computer generated. Textures, gradients (etc) are 2D graphics, and they require an image editor… not a 3D animation renderer. If you want something better than GIMP, you’re only option is Photoshop as there’s nothing commercially that has the raw power of GIMP without going all the way into heavy industry style graphics. :slight_smile:

Checkout Google Sketchup it’s pretty cool.

Sketchup is an OK product but it’s based around 3D CAD in preference to 3D animation, a pretty different sort of package. :slight_smile:

Yes. And I was wondering if they could be output to jpeg. I’ve seen some examples of gears, watches, and other stuff supposedly done with Blender. It’s impressive stuff that I do not think could be done with Photoshop or GIMP.

I did not know this. I was under the impression that you could create objects in a 3D modeling program and the program would have tools to create surfaces, textures, shading, etc. I thought I saw some hair and fur plugins for Blender.

With something like GIMP or Photoshop basically what you are doing is creating the illusion of something. You have to use gradients or layer masks to simulate glossiness or lighting effects. You are basicially faking it.

I am nothing more than a beginner at graphics. Doing graphics takes artistic talent. Not only do I lack the talent, I do not possess the skill with image editing programs to fake what I am looking for. I am just looking for something easier and quicker than GIMP (or Photoshop, I have a 10-year-old version 6). I find GIMP to be buggy and a major pain in the butt, to be honest.

I see some pretty impressive graphics on the TV news and in commercials. I have to think they are using something more powerful than Photoshop to do those things.

Thanks for the feedback. :slight_smile:

Yes, you can render to a variety of formats, including jpeg.

In as much as you can use any other image in web design. The 3d application will output an image in some format, for example a jpg, and then you can manipulate it with GIMP (for example), or just stick it straight on your site. You’d probably want to optimise the image before you use it though as images generated by 3d apps tend to be a bit heavy (not sure about Blender, but I’ll bet it’s the same).