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Thread: How is lightwave doing today ?

  1. #1
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    How is lightwave doing today ?

    Hi:

    I remember a long time ago, when babylon 5 and seaquest were on, it was like a golden age for lightwave.
    Lightwave was very popular, and great shows were done using lightwave. Lightwave was very much talked
    about. But today I don't see lightwave as much as before.
    I might be a little disconnected from today's world of animation.
    Can someone tell me how is lightwave doing in today's world ?
    Thank you !!!
    -Mobilis In Mobile-

  2. #2
    It's still around and works well. My guess is that there are good number active users - 10 to 20 thousand, but spread over about 5 or 6 LW releases. My guess is that about half of those users are hobbiest. So the golden age is over but it's never too late for a comeback. Seems like there is more activity on the forums since the 2018 release.
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  3. #3
    pass:sword OFF's Avatar
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    Competitor companies are conducting a more aggressive advertising campaign for their products. Conclusion of contracts with manufacturers of software and hardware. As a result, LW for many years in a row has been an unsurpassed outsider in the field of third-party plug-ins, especially such as third-party renderers. Perhaps in the case of large film studios for LW everything is not so bad, but in the case of individual users, the situation is so far bleak. Most users, hearing the name of the LW either ask what they just heard or are surprised that this product still exists on the market.
    The reason is simple - the convenience and speed of implementation of ideas.
    This also applies to the user interface of the program, mainly due to its separation into two essentially separate programs. This also applies to the ease and convenience of creating content for Motion Graphics - this area is now rapidly gaining momentum.
    I hope that the LW has a bright future, but for this it is necessary to overcome the transition period as soon as possible - having completely updated the interface and tools, make even more improvements in the field of OGL during deformation of objects, especially with character animation, and open the way for third-party developers to the LW. In general, this has been spoken about for almost decades, so there is no particular need to repeat all this again.

  4. #4
    I would guess that Lightwave remains a fairly popular tool with freelancers and small studios.
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  5. #5
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    And Nasa..

    Nasa won an Emmy Award not long ago (september 15, 2019)..
    For their show which includes some Lightwave work (if not all),
    though it isnīt the VFX getting awarded as I understand it, nevertheless...Lightwave must have had a huge role in it, but also the artists of course.
    Creds (Dave Jerrard, Mark Hennessy-Barrett, William (Proton) Vaughan, Chris O’Riley, Sean Kennedy, Andrew Comb, and Greg Sullivan)


    Lightwave forum thread..
    https://forums.newtek.com/showthread...78#post1579978

    Lightwave blog...
    https://blog.lightwave3d.com/2019/10/emmy-win-for-nasa/

  6. #6
    Well, I purchased Lightwave 11.5 and use it for projects every so often when something unique and cool is needed...you get out of LightWave what you put in so ask yourself...how is LightWave 3D? It's Amazing. -S

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  7. #7

    Most users, hearing the name of the LW either ask what they just heard or are surprised that this product still exists on the market.
    it has been like that since 1999. 


    Great artists will create Great art using LightWave.  

    LightWave is much more production friendly these days overall, wish i had more time to use it, but, you know... > work.

    I would guess that Lightwave remains a fairly popular tool with freelancers and small studios.
    it should be.
    Last edited by erikals; 11-17-2019 at 05:27 PM.
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  8. #8
    I use LW all the time in my work [have been since it's inception] and I'm currently working on two projects for clients at this time. One is for a prototype that currently has a pending patent. The other is a huge project that is being revised for 2020. Due to NDA'S I can't talk specifics though.

    I'm semi-retired these days, so, I'm not doing as much work as before due to medical issues which have, unfortunately, interfered with my ability to work quite a bit. But I am getting by, tightly, but getting by.

    I will continue to use it till I die, I believe. Hopefully that won't be for quite some time though. I wish LW all the best and look forward to 2020 and the next version of the software as well!

    I wish LW was used more than it is. But the fact that other software, whom we all know and loathe, and don't need to be mentioned here, has a stranglehold on the industry, so smaller programs [yes LW is one of these] don't stand a real chance of getting to the front.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesCurtis View Post
    I wish LW was used more than it is. But the fact that other software, whom we all know and loathe, and don't need to be mentioned here, has a stranglehold on the industry, so smaller programs [yes LW is one of these] don't stand a real chance of getting to the front.
    Depends what you mean with smaller, feature-wise LW is not that much smaller than others, from company size, user base and price point of view it is.

    LW is a very capable 3d software feature-wise but once you worked in these other programs for a while you understand why LW has no real chance of getting to the front.

    In my opinion this is largely due to not having improved the main architecture since two decades, still has the application split, inefficient workflow, half-baked features, worst Modeler in the industry and outdated UI.

    Why do I still use it? LW has some goodies, a user friendly licensing and its retro charm.
    Last edited by Marander; 12-17-2019 at 01:49 AM.

  10. #10
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Procedurals, it has probably one of the largest libraries...and those work almost fully across all functions, pushing particles with procedural velocity, using it for fluid density, displacing, using it for motion vectors in graph editor, using it on volumetrics as texturer or drive volumetric placement, and much more.

    In my other favourite program, I do not have the same open function to drive things in the way I can do in Lightwave..and also not a fraction near the amount of procedurals to choose from.

    Then I also got the bullet bone dynamics.

    And even though the volumetric setup with nulls and primitive shape volumetric has become more convuluted to work with than in older hypervoxels, it is still one of the fastest to set up, if I use my other favourite software, you would have to connect many nodes to get a simple null spherical falloff in the volume, in Lightwave it is already built in with a primitive null.

    apart from that I still like the UI structure, (not UI color setup or window scaling) but the structure and design of the Layout, itīs a Movie stage more than any other software, the others have an appearance of a General 3D construction software..without that setup feel of a movie stage, that is due to how Lightwave has camera, lightīs, objects fixed at their designated places, while most other software requires scrolling and finding these items...and apart from that Lightwave has itīs menu designed to take up as little space as possible by default, while other software needs customizing to get near that layout look.

    That said, I am more and more using my other fav software..since I need to learn much much more to catch up with what I know in Lightwave, but from time to time..I switch back to lightwave for particular tasks.
    But the incitament for continue to purchasing new Licenses is probably running out of fuel the upcoming years, Lightwave needs to take quite a bit of a Huge step in terms of render speed, modeling tools in Layout..and enancing fluid and particle tools along with syncing forces to work across all the dynamic engine in unison.


    In There is almost always a "T" button to access procedural textures, for hair to move around etc...which In fact seem to be impossible in my other fav program...nor does my other fav program have the same kind of way of stacking the procedural textures on top of eachother and crushing the levels with gradiens on top of that, such cases are some important workflows I miss.

    Whatīs killing it for me in Lightwave, that is fiberfx renderspeed, lack of layout modeling sculpting with dyntopo, lack of weight emission and painting in Layout.. and lack of a GPU renderer...and dynamic forces and engines not being worked on to work in unison with forces.

  11. #11
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    I'm doing a couple of personal projects using Syntheyes, and I have noticed that in the 'Rilling Shutter' section of the Syntheyes manual is says that Lightwave is the only 3D package that Russ was aware of that has a motion filter to render Rolling Shutter effects.

    This is in the PDF manual, so I don't imagine it is THAT outdated, as it hasn't been long since the last release. Does anyone know if this is still the case? I'd be a little bit amazed if other renderers didn't have this capability, but it certainly seems that Lightwave was an early adopter of this rendering feature, way back in 11.5 by the sound of things...

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicolas Jordan View Post
    I would guess that Lightwave remains a fairly popular tool with freelancers and small studios.
    Well in our studio (less that 5 people) we use it for Illustration, animation and Virtual Sets.We are very happy with the latest version.

    -R
    This message does not reflect the opinions of the US Government, CG Networks or CGTALK.com. The opinions expressed on this posting are on my own volition.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyuzo View Post
    Lightwave is the only 3D package that Russ was aware of that has a motion filter to render Rolling Shutter effects.
    Maybe LW was early with this but various render engines have specific settings to simulate the Rolling Shutter effect.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    Procedurals... In my other favourite program... and also not a fraction near the amount of procedurals to choose from.

    ... Then I also got the bullet bone dynamics...
    Yes LW has nice Procedurals but again, there are applications that have many more Procedurals built-in with more type variety and parameters to customize and far better filters how to combine them. I guess it's just the matter of time until there is more variety of Procedurals in your favourite app.

    Bullet bone dynamics I have not used yet but generally the Bullet / Dynamics integration in LW is tedious to work with for me.

    That's something NewTek can improve in future versions hopefully.

  15. #15
    Not so newbie member lardbros's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tim Parsons View Post
    It's still around and works well. My guess is that there are good number active users - 10 to 20 thousand, but spread over about 5 or 6 LW releases. My guess is that about half of those users are hobbiest. So the golden age is over but it's never too late for a comeback. Seems like there is more activity on the forums since the 2018 release.
    Wow, that's optimistic... not that that's a bad thing, I REALLY hope there is that many. I have no idea how many users there are. LightWave seems to have many more users who don't show their work, than other apps I see. Kind of a good thing because they're busy, working... but a shame no one gets to see their cool work.


    LightWave is still doing well considering.

    I do love the renderer still, and although some say it's slow, it competes nicely with Arnold render. (In terms of speed and beauty.)
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