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Thread: Why I bought Lightwave

  1. #1
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    Why I bought Lightwave

    For Rob Powers or anyone else who may benefit from this, here is a thorough thought process for buying Lightwave instead of anything else:

    1. I graduate with a Diploma of Graphics Design in early 2013. Start to get interested in 3D design which I have never done.

    2. Decide on a budget. I decide that I am prepared to spend approx 1500 dollars. This will be the biggest expenditure in one hit that I plan to make at any point in my graphics design career.

    3. I conclude that Maya is technically the best software to get. But it does not satisfy [2] above. Especially when Autodesk price gouges my Antipodean country by a factor of 160 to 200%.

    4. So at the 1500ish price point it comes down to Cinema 4D, Modo, Rhino and Lightwave. I proceed to download trial versions of them all and play with them for about a month.

    5. I look briefly at cheaper options but it is obvious to me that Carrara and Daz are too much in the hobbyist realm; their functionality doesn't stack up to professional demands.

    6. I also try out Blender but I don't like it. Not sure why. I just don't. I keep it anyway, as you can

    7. Cinema 4D is in Euros. That ends that. Going from AUD to Euros is a dead loss.

    8. I find a professional 3D designer who's been in the CG business since the early 90's. I read his blog. He says that Rhino is hardly used in CG. I find a major Holywood Studio who does use it. Hmm. mixed messages.

    9. Then I see that Modo and Rhino are part of a broader family of products. Whereas Lightwave, basically, is one package. In other words, Lightwave doesn't have the incentive to dumb down features to get you to buy something else as well. I decide that even though at that time Modo had a 700 dollars off sale, it will cost me more in the long run.

    10. I find a site that compares a lot of 3D tools and Modo also seems to be a bit limited in quite a few ways such as animation and import/export formats.

    11. So after months of research I buy Lightwave with an eye to serious use for the next 5 to 10 years. I accept that in the short term Modo would have been better - more obvious tutorials on DT and a fancier GUI. But in the long run with 3D printing I am glad that I went with Lightwave.

    ************

    If anybody has any doubts about how much thought goes into buying something like Lightwave, then that's how much thought/research goes into it.

    Don't know if that interests anyone. Just saying.

  2. #2
    Super Member Snosrap's Avatar
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    I think LW is on sale right now. It's a solid choice and you won't be disapointed.

  3. #3
    Electron wrangler jwiede's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by saranine View Post
    9. Then I see that Modo and Rhino are part of a broader family of products. Whereas Lightwave, basically, is one package. In other words, Lightwave doesn't have the incentive to dumb down features to get you to buy something else as well. I decide that even though at that time Modo had a 700 dollars off sale, it will cost me more in the long run.
    Not sure I understand this one. What "broader family" of products is modo a part, in a manner that LW wouldn't also qualify w.r.t. Chronosculpt or, say, Tricaster?
    John W.
    LW2015.3UB/2018.0.7 on MacPro(12C/24T/10.13.6),32GB RAM, NV 980ti

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    Quote Originally Posted by jwiede View Post
    Not sure I understand this one. What "broader family" of products is modo a part, in a manner that LW wouldn't also qualify w.r.t. Chronosculpt or, say, Tricaster?
    That was my question. I guess the OP is thinking of Mari.

    I'm also looking at point 2. Frankly, that might be optimistic.
    Inactive.

  5. #5
    Electron wrangler jwiede's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phil View Post
    I'm also looking at point 2. Frankly, that might be optimistic.
    Esp. if s/he doesn't yet have a Cintiq tablet, nor commercially-usable licenses for Photoshop and/or Illustrator. For that matter, s/he's still likely going to need Rhino or Form-Z as well. I'd personally guess $1500 will be the proverbial drop in the bucket looking back a few years from now.
    John W.
    LW2015.3UB/2018.0.7 on MacPro(12C/24T/10.13.6),32GB RAM, NV 980ti

  6. #6
    NewTek Developer jameswillmott's Avatar
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    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on how you came to your decision, and it's always nice to see users from Australia on here!
    LightWave3D training, assets, news and discussion at www.liberty3d.com
    My opinions are my own and do not represent the opinions of any other entity, Liberty3D is not officially endorsed by NewTek.

  7. #7
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    OK, this was a bit amusing! I DID buy Lightwave about 4 months ago! Point 2 would have been optimistic if that is all that I had spent! I saved up a lot of money in the years of my Diploma of Graphics Design. So this year I went on a bit of a spending spree lol.
    I suppose while I am at it I should make a list of all of the graphics design software that I have bought [commercial license unless stated otherwise!]

    Lightwave 11.6 [obviously]
    Adobe CS6 whole collection [student licence; I got this during my diploma]. Since I have no interest whatsoever in Creative Cloud this will slide off the face of the earth.
    Zbrush 4R6.
    Messiah Studio [thus this and above work with Lightwave quite well]
    Corel Painter 12
    Marmoset Toolbag
    Topogun
    Construct 2
    Terragen 3
    Flter Forge 3

    That's not a lot compared to what some other people here have got..I know. I should be able to make a lot of 2D/3D art and stuff with all that. I also have a tablet. Not a Cintiq one for goodness sake. Just a small Wacom. I don't have the deskspace around my computer for a bigger tablet anyway.

    Learning how to use all of this from: Lynda, Digital Tutors, various free YouTube videos , books... I did buy some advanced Lightwave tutorials by Ablan. Probably not ready for them yet. Not a problem. I'll come to them later.
    Last edited by saranine; 12-09-2013 at 10:22 PM.

  8. #8
    Super Member geo_n's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwiede View Post
    Not sure I understand this one. What "broader family" of products is modo a part, in a manner that LW wouldn't also qualify w.r.t. Chronosculpt or, say, Tricaster?
    Probably he means modo is now part of the Foundry that is catered to a more expensive clientele.

    Anyway to the OP. Congrats on making a wise decision imho. Not as expensive a c4d studio, not dizzying to use like blender, not an unknown future as modo pricewise.
    I also chose lightwave for the price and feature ratio a few years ago. Solid app and dependable. It will take years or never before you hit the barriers that prevent you from creating art.

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    Lightwave will always be very solid for 3D printing. In fact from the sites that I have looked at where you can make your own 3D models, upload them and sell them Lightwave formats are always accepted. However Modo formats sometimes aren't accepted. At least not at the moment. Interestingly, there was a site that allowed uploaded models with the formats of all 3 autodesk programs [softimage, studio max and maya], Cinema 4D and Lightwave and nothing else. No Rhino. No blender. No keyshot.

    So Lightwave to me will prove to be a very safe choice. You can't really go wrong with it.
    Last edited by saranine; 12-09-2013 at 10:57 PM.

  10. #10
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    This forum is a great part of Lightwave as well

    People seem to be a bit more adult/mature than in some forums that I could mention.

  11. #11
    Electron wrangler jwiede's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by saranine View Post
    I also have a tablet. Not a Cintiq one for goodness sake. Just a small Wacom. I don't have the deskspace around my computer for a bigger tablet anyway.
    I had written another paragraph, but it kind of went off-topic so decided to omit it from the earlier post. Now the issue now seems worth raising. If you're going to be using a tablet day in and out, hours a day, you'll likely want to seriously consider a Cintiq. They're expensive, but working directly on the display is also _much_ more efficient than the indirect manner of a normal tablet. If you cannot afford a Cintiq, consider a laptop/tablet with pen support, what really matters is the ability to work directly on the display (but with a high-res pen, touchscreens really aren't adequate for fine work, and angle/pressure-sensitivity is important).

    Virtually all of my friends who earn their living doing digital content creation swear by Cintiq tablets, or equivalent (of the few not using Cintiqs, most now use Surface Pros because of the combo of "current gen" Wacom Penenable tech and high-res display plus tablet form-factor). They all make essentially the same argument, which is that when something is your primary work tool, every little bit of efficiency counts, and drawing/whatever directly on the display offers them that.

    Personally, I'm a hobbyist, so didn't see the benefit as adequate to justify the cost of a Cintiq, but then I don't make gfx content for a living. That said, I did recently pick up a Surface Pro. I am definitely finding the experience of working directly on the display much faster and more accurate than my experience working with my Intuos, even if the screen area is slightly smaller (I have a medium-size Intuos4). Even as a hobbyist I can see the workflow improvement, so yeah, if I were doing it for work, I'd definitely get the largest Cintiq I could afford (or get my employer to afford).

    Just something to consider.
    Last edited by jwiede; 12-10-2013 at 02:15 AM.
    John W.
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  12. #12
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    Thank you for the thoughts on tablets. Yes. Something to think about.

  13. #13
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    But I would lose sleep.

    At 3 am in the morning...

    "WHAT YOU STUPID KITTY CAT! DON'T JUMP ON MY CINTIQ!!!!"

    "meowwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!"

    "YOU STUPID CAT! I PAID 1200 BUCKS FOR THAT AND YOU USED IT AS A SCRATCHING POST!"


  14. #14
    Often Banned Megalodon2.0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by saranine View Post
    "YOU STUPID CAT! I PAID 1200 BUCKS FOR THAT AND YOU USED IT AS A SCRATCHING POST!"

    The cat? Or the person who left the $1200 Cintique out on the table for the cat to get to?

  15. #15
    "Why i bought lightwave"

    At the time i already had 3dsmax and was looking around to add another app... a few years previous I started out with Inspire 3d from newtek which was a lite version of lightwave 5.6
    so...I added Lightwave 7.0, mainly for the modelling and rendering capabilities.

    My decision was helped along with the numerous TV shows that featured lightwave such a roughnecks starship troopers, B5, DS9, movie VFX, dan dare, various anime cel shaded work
    ...was hard to ignore it's renderer when all i had was 3dsmax scanline and the early version of cebas final render...both of which sucked in comparison to lightwave's renderer.
    Last edited by cresshead; 12-10-2013 at 06:40 AM.
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