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Turner
12-20-2003, 02:15 AM
Hi -

Ok, first post here - I don't own LW but am considering it, as I have been since '93 ;)

Also considering other software such as Maya, Cinema 4D, etc. I'm leaning toward Lightwave because of 1)price and 2)reputation.

Anyway, I've got a G5 dual on the way, and bought it (among other reasons) because I have a great client with a need for some wild rendering stuff - animation that goes from wireframe, to realistic, to cel... hey, whatever he likes, yes? Can't get too far on my G3 400 anymore.

So, I'm evaluating what to get. I currently own form*z so I doubt I need anything with "really robust" modeling features as far as rigid body stuff goes. That said, interesting modeling features are always a plus. I also own Carrara (great renderer) and an older version of Strata StudioPro (3.8).

A few things I'm interested in finding out which I couldn't determine from Newtek's relatively limited site on LW: (And I realize there may be plugins for this stuff)

1) Particle physics... One thing I saw recently that really turned me on was 3DS' Pyrocluster... in other words, particle systems that chase/follow targets.. anything like this? And generally more info on particles...

2) Grid/snap system. I realize this may be rudimentary but again, 3DS (gmax actually) has a really nice world/object snap system

3) If I buy 7.5 now, is 8 free?

4) Will it run on my Amiga 4000? (Kidding, settle down.)

5) Does it take advantage of the G5's dual processors? Is 8 going to take advantage of 64 bit?

(EDIT) Whoops! Forgot to add.... 6) Physics! What about physics? I want to pour Jello down stairs, I want to go bowling, I want to ragdoll... etc. Can't find much on LW physics/lack of physics, and don't know about plugins yet.

That's kind of it for now, I'm sure I'll have more messages. I figure by posting serious questions here I'll get the best answers.

Thanks,
Andrew

Turner
12-20-2003, 06:22 AM
Ok, I found the info on version 8 (sketchy) and the free upgrade info.

Andrew

Turner
12-20-2003, 07:13 AM
Oh, and Pyrocluster.. that's Cinema 4d.

But it was the Max particles I'm referring to.

Come on, somebody throw me a bone here.

Beamtracer
12-20-2003, 08:41 AM
You've already got a Mac, so on the Mac, Lightwave is a better product than Maya.

Lightwave gives you the full featured version. Maya doesn't.

Lightwave 8 is due for imminent release. There's some talk that Newtek engineers are all working past midnight every night to get the thing finished.

Regarding 64-bit Mac... it's a feature that Apple will phase in over some years. Current 32-bit apps have a theoretical RAM limit of 4 gigs. In practice most are limited to 2 gigs (apparently it's a lot harder to get them running with 4 gigs).

Lightwave 7.5 came out a long time ago (2 years maybe? I can't remember). Therefore Lightwave 7.5 works better with OS X 10.2.7 or 10.2.8. Newtek has said that Lightwave 8 is being designed around Panther, so 10.3.x will be the OS to use with LW8. This is important to remember.

I've got LW7.5 running on a G5. I'm using OS X 10.2.7. It works really well and is very stable. I don't recommend going to Panther until LW8 comes out.

I believe LW8 is a free upgrade when you purchase LW7.5.

On the G5 you still get more RAM even when you run 32-bit apps. On a G4 (or Windows) you can usually run a maximum of 2 gigs of RAM. This has to include Lightwave, Modeler, The Hub, the OS, and any other apps you're running.

On the G5 each of these can take its own 2 gig sector of RAM, up to a total of 8 gigs. When pure 64-bit apps come along, each app will be able to use 8 gigs of RAM. Apart from that I don't think 64-bit apps will bring any great speed advantages.

Lightwave runs pretty well on its own. I'm a big fan of the Worley Labs plug-ins...
www.worley.com

Turner
12-20-2003, 08:50 AM
Thanks for the info!

The machine probably comes with Panther installed, though I'm not sure. I got a refurb from Apple and it states that if Panther isn't installed, it comes on a CD.

As far as Lightwave goes, right now it's kind of between that and Maxon's stuff. I can't find a Lightwave demo, though there may be one available. (I'm big on trying stuff out before committing!)

Also, I guess I was expecting to find more nuts-and-bolts info about Lightwave, such as how you can set up snapping and so forth - maybe even a manual or something in PDF.

I'll still be upgrading to Carrara 3 since it has a lot of stuff I love, but I'm really in need of a more robust animation package.

I'll check out the link you mentioned - cheers!

Andrew

themaxx
12-20-2003, 03:46 PM
You can set up particles to follow/chase targets.

Spidey1138
12-20-2003, 06:04 PM
You can find the manual in PDF format here http://www.newtek.com/products/lightwave/downloads/index.html

Turner
12-20-2003, 06:38 PM
Nice!

Thanks you guys, I figured going to the "source" was probably a good idea. Some.. erm.. "other" forums I browsed seemed to get really full of hate and flame when anyone mentions a program other than the one the forum focuses on.

Andrew

Beamtracer
12-20-2003, 08:55 PM
While C4D has made improvements over the last couple of years, I consider Lightwave to be a more sophisticated product.

Despite its name, there's not much cinema being rendered on C4D.


For more Lightwave plug-ins check out:

http://www.dynamic-realities.com/

http://www.shaders.org/ifw2_textures/