View Full Version : 3d Connexion Device or not?

10-22-2015, 10:30 PM
I would like to get opinions from those who have used 3d Connexion devices. I have some questions that would be nice to have answered.

1. Do you like using the device with Lightwave or is it not so helpful?
2. Do you use it more with Modeler or Layout? I do not do most of my models and that is why I ask this question.
3. Do you use it on a regular basis or just when you want to play with it?

Any information is helpful as I research this. I am watching videos on it and having a hard time seeing how it can be helpful unless you are doing interactive fly throughs but maybe they can be used for much more. I do most of my work with layout so if it is helpful to others I would consider getting one.

Thanks in advance for your responses.

10-23-2015, 12:00 AM
I have the Space mouse Pro wireless. It works very well and can be used in other 3d programs.

Once the mouse is fine-tuned and the buttons are setup; it's actually very useful.

I use my mouse for both layout and modeler, and the buttons can be setup to activate differently for layout and modeler too. For example, I have a button marked 'T' that I assigned to activate the move command in modeler. When I go to layout, that button now activates my motion builder. So, I'm not just stuck with 'T' being just for the move command. Layout is where I think the 3D mouse gets the most use. A lot of moving objects, cameras, and lights are easier to position and rotate with it. The 3d mouse doesn't move objects in modeler, but it can still rotate, move, and zoom in and out the viewports with just the puck like in layout.

I use mine a lot with Lightwave. It's not bad at all. It's touchy at first, but that can be adjusted.

Two things I ran into that might be helpful:

I have the wireless one. The thing comes with its own battery that can't be changed, and it needs to be plugged into the computer to charge anyway. So, you can save yourself some money and buy the regular 3d mouse.

Also, if you do get one, be sure to assign the buttons. At first they are all default and could cause LW to crash when pressed.

Good luck in deciding - hope this helps.

10-23-2015, 12:08 AM
I have the small laptop version. I like to use it in layout with VPR to do flythroughs for pitching ideas.

10-23-2015, 02:18 AM
I use mine all the time, but only with layout, there is not much use for it in modeller, there are a few settings to tweak to get it to work nicely, I inverted mine, slowed it down and then set the object mode to fly and "current object" the current object setting allows it to set auto keys, if set to "view" the camera will just snap back to the previous key frame when you touch anything like the time slider.
you can also assign it to different things in virtual room (by the way the old usb playstation 3 controllers can also be set in here to do different things, you can add several controllers if you want, they can even work over Bluetooth! and windows will for the most recognise them straight away, although sometimes you need to set up an edited xbox driver and profile if it messes up)
the 3d connexions is also very good with 3dcoat, but rubbish with zbrush (it only works at all if you use the beta run any app version that emulates key strokes and mouse moves)

10-23-2015, 11:43 AM
So it sounds like it is more useful in Layout which is what I mostly use. Do any of you do the both hand method with controlling the 3d mouse on the left and the regular mouse on the right? That is what I keep seeing in their demo videos on their website.

- - - Updated - - -

I have the small laptop version. I like to use it in layout with VPR to do flythroughs for pitching ideas.

Do you know if there is a way to do flythroughs with the camera using the 3d mouse? Do you use it for that as well?

10-23-2015, 11:57 AM
I use it all the time in 3D coat, Space Navigator in Left hand, Mouse in Right.
With the SN it's so much quicker zooming in/out, panning, spinning around the model.

However, I have never had any luck with getting it to work in the same fashion in LW (there is a much bigger thread on this).

10-23-2015, 12:18 PM
I never use mine in LW, but use it all the time in Inventor. If I could navigate the 3D viewport in Inventor like I could in Modeler I'd never use it. :)

10-23-2015, 12:22 PM
The both hand method works well. I put the 3d mouse on the left armrest and the regular mouse and keyboard go on my right.

Fly throughs with the camera can be done too. Just select the camera, go to camera view, and you can move it all over with the 3d mouse.

Signal to Noise
10-23-2015, 12:27 PM
I have both large and notebook models of SN. I never go without and I use it for both modeler and layout. There's more functionality with 3DConnexion and other CG software but it's still pretty useful, albeit limited, with LW.

10-23-2015, 12:29 PM
Do you know if there is a way to do flythroughs with the camera using the 3d mouse? Do you use it for that as well?

As jimmymac says, you can select the active camera. So in Camera view, you can use 3d mouse to move your camera. Then scrub the timeline to set your key frames.

10-23-2015, 01:21 PM
As jimmymac says, you can select the active camera. So in Camera view, you can use 3d mouse to move your camera. Then scrub the timeline to set your key frames.

I am very interested in getting one. Right now one thing that is a little annoying is I press 6 to see camera view but need to change something in the animation and press 4 then I have to go up to the top to rotate around to see what I need to fix. It sounds like this could be easily fixed with a simple click and twist of the 3d Connexion mouse.

10-23-2015, 01:24 PM
I guess I need to determine which one works best for me. I like the idea of the Pro so you can rest your hand on it and work from there.

10-23-2015, 03:34 PM
Sure, Airwaves. You can set the buttons to switch between views and go from camera - to view - to light. I open the Navigation panel and use that a lot with my normal mouse.

With the 3d mouse though, you can move, rotate, and zoom without having to push a button. You can just select the object and swing it all over without having to press a key to activate the way you need the object or scene to move.

The real setback is the price for one, so being skeptical about whether the 3d mouse is worth it is understandable. Also, I've only seen them online. Major stores in my area don't carry them on the rack, so I can't get to mess with it until I bought one.

10-24-2015, 09:39 AM
My 3Dconnexion SpaceMouse Pro works like a dream. You have to edit the settings of sensitivity and scale but it works great here. A while back there was some issues with the software version of the drivers and then people suggested the 3Dxware drivers but they didn't work for me. I haven't updated my drivers for a while but things are fine on LW2015, even better than LW 11.6. I'm on 3Dx software 3.17.8 drivers.


I wish Layout and Modeler would retain the device setting though, I have to manually select the mouse everytime. It still works but it works better once the device is selected in the drop down menu.

10-26-2015, 01:10 PM
I am keeping my eye out for the Spacemouse Pro. I was going to get the basic one but feel that I would probably upgrade eventually so I will go with that one.

Thank you guys for your help on this.

10-26-2015, 02:29 PM
Can anyone tell me what benefit the SpacePilot Pro would be over the SpaceMouse Pro? I know that the spacepilot has more buttons and a screen but is the screen really useful in Lightwave? Any thoughts?

10-26-2015, 03:23 PM
I have the standard SpaceMouse pro (wired). My guess is that the SpacePilot Pro has the advantage of looking cooler and giving better bragging rights if any of your nerdy friends would even care. So, if you have the money, get it - but it really won't serve you any better than the mouse in my opinion.

Layout is quite good with the SpaceMouse Pro, but modeler is less useful with it in my opinion. While seemingly better supported in some other apps like 3D Coat, I actually don't use it much in there to say that it is really beneficial. I would save the money for a good tablet (regular Wacom or Cintiq) as the pen and tablet combo might be more useful if you don't already have that....

In the end the Mouse Pro is mostly an interesting novelty to me. I like it, but it hasn't changed the way I do things or made me so much more efficient. If you need an alternate way to control stuff due to a medical condition, I say try it. But it really is expensive for what it does... nice, but not critical in my opinion.