Choosing the Right Animation Software

By: Wain Roy

The computer graphics industry has come such a long way that if you start to count the number of computer animation software that existed or still exist in the market, you'd make a list as long as an F1 track. Jokes apart, it is fact that there are a lot too many options if you're trying to choose the right animation software and this is what makes a decision difficult. All you need to know is your purpose.

You may ask a few questions-is it user-friendly? Does it have the best functionality? Is it the best product within your budget? Has it got the finest features? Which level of handling do you need it for? After you know your intentions for sure, make your choice.

3D animation software come in varied ranges and levels of complexity. But even the simplest low-end 3D software available today can render jaw-dropping graphics and animation. Therefore, you need to be extra careful in selecting the right 3D software to serve your needs. Good news is that most 3D versions are available in their respective demo versions. So you may judge their suitability before you finally commit buying one.

If you just want to get started at low cost, there are the basic level 3D software packages available, which sometimes even come free. These have the very rudimentary features and are as easy to handle as possible. 3D Canvas, Xara 3D, Adobe Dimension Amorphium, Poser are some names which require mention in the list of easy-to-use, simple 3D animation packages.

While choosing the intermediate or middle-level 3D software, be a little more prudent-examine the quality of rendering and speed before you seal a deal. This category of software has varying degrees of sophistication, with some offering radiosity at an affordable price. Strata 3D, Pixels (only for Mac), Bryce 3D, Blender are some of the names under the middle-level category.

At the high-end level, it is the implementation of the software that makes this category sharply different from the other two levels. Most of the applications at the advanced level have mind-boggling functionalities and powerful rendering. Lightwave 3D, Houdini, 3Ds Max, Maya 3D are some of the popular choices in this level. Of these, Maya is a front-runner for its amazing capabilities at character animation, video games development, visual effects, etc. Maya tutorials are available online to make learning this software easier. And like all the rest, it's better to try hands on before going for it.

High-end complex 3D software learning is no duck soup for sure. But who'd mind a little adventure when it doesn't cost anything? You may check out the free Maya video tutorials to get an idea about the software. Only when you know them all, make the final pick.

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