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Help me decide, TurboCAD, AutoCAD, Cinema 4D Studio??
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* October 21, 2010, 11:07:23 AM
I'm an existing Cinema 4D R11.5 (Core/Prime) user and I'm looking to either upgrade to Cinema 4D R12 or get another new product.  I use Cinema 4D to do 3D animation for the most part for my video productions.  However, I also have a need to do some electrical (wiring diagrams) and some limited mechanical 3D objects such as braces, boxes (not too complex shapes/components).  AutoCAD Electrical 2011 is nice, but at $6000 a license, it's not worth the investment.

I'm both a Mac and Windows users (I have a pretty powerful MacPro that also boot camps into Windows Vista x64).  I prefer to stay within the Mac side of things as it's just a much easier and more stable platform than Windows, but I can do either.

So based on this info what version of TurboCAD (Mac or Windows) is good at producing:
Wiring diagrams
Relatively simple automotive brackets/boxes

Also, why are the Mac versions and Windows versions of TurboCAD so radically different (atleast they appear to be)?

All thoughts and opinions welcome.

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* October 21, 2010, 01:32:00 PM
#1
Not really what you are asking about, but from the program you are currently familiar with something else comes to mind that may interest you.

I have purchased a license to Octane Render while it is still in beta and have been following along with its developement.  From what I understand it has a plug in that is being tested to create your renders and I believe the plug ins are free.  Octane is GPU based and with the right hardware it is quite amazing.  The price is 99 euros, so it is not at all expensive.

The point is that with your experience and something like Octane it opens the doors for 3D modeling in a major way and TurboCAD is considered to be the modeler of choice by many 3D users, myself inclueded.

I don't have any experience relating to wiring, but TC can certainly handle most mechanical modeling needs.  I don't have a Mac so I can't comment on that either.

Good luck.

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TC V21 Pro Platinum  Win 7 Professional


* October 21, 2010, 01:40:43 PM
#2
Can't go wrong with TC Platinum Windows.If use Windows the forum can offer higher active support.If not would have to use the Mac forum. :)

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Even a mistake may turn out to be the one thing necessary to a worthwhile achievement Henry Ford
If I have ever made any valuable discoveries it has been owing more to patient attention than to any other talent Isaac Newton
I have not failed Ive just found 10,000 ways that won't work Thomas Edison


* October 21, 2010, 01:49:56 PM
#3
Interesting software, unfortunately I'm all ATI in my MacPro and in my two other PCs.  Octane Render is CUDA (nVidia only).  

I went thru the TurboCAD tutorial video ... I gotta say perhaps I'm spoiled with Cinema 4D, but the interface for TurboCAD seems a little too "crowded" and way too much complexity is "SNAP" options.

Doesn't appear TurboCAD supports any type of animation?  For example if I wanted to animate electrical current flow and/or spring motion of an automotive suspension -- I didn't see any of that in the tutorial?

The renders also seem to be missing blending and depth.

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* October 21, 2010, 08:45:28 PM
#4
Hi robains - I've gone from Autocad 10 (ancient) through TC since version 6 I think. I have limited experience with Cinema 4D and other nurbs-based programs, but recently I decided to draw a Dalek from Dr. Who (ok, I have no life...), and I found a tutorial done in Cinema 4D which was an interesting comparison.

As I mentioned in my Gallery post ("Exterminate"),
 "Another fun thing was going through an incredibly detailed tutorial done in Cinema4D at http://www.projectdalek.co.uk/files/tutorials/virttutindex.html.

It's a nurbs-based modeler, which is incredibly tedious (to my inexperienced eye) -About half the time I'd have the parts drawn in a tenth of the time it took to do in Cinema4D - but then he'd do some complex surface polygon manipulation that was impossible in TC, and there was a lot of time spent trying to replicate nurbs editing with 3d adds, subtracts, slices, etc.."

I think that's one advantage TC has over C4D or TrueSpace etc. The ACIS solid modeling engine is much easier to deal with than tediously editing nodes, lines and facets you have to go through with C4D. If you're modeling 3d objects for usual architectural and engineering purposes, I think TC wins hands down.

If you're modeling creatures, monsters and CGI-type things with lots of irregular non-planar shapes, maybe C4D is the way to go.

I don't know how good C4D is with 2D planar models like electronic circuits, but TC is great for that. The learning curve isn't too bad for 2D - going through the "help file" (which is a pdf manual) is perfect, since they give a lot of good examples. The user interface is daunting at first, but unlike TrueSpace, at least you can easily figure out what things do by hovering over the control - right clicking brings up a handy menu that allows you to easily change between drawing and rendering modes.

As for animation, I haven't tried C4D - have played with Maya (which makes me want to let them sacrifice me on one of their temples) and Flash (which is almost starting to make sense, but it's taken a lot of beer to get that far). With Turbocad, you have to buy the Animation Lab plug-in, which is kinda clunky and primitive compared to Flash, but it has all the basics and would probably do what you want. Animation is very complex and the thing I like about Flash is the ability to embed animations within animations - like if you wanted to move a spinning top across the "stage" - one animation is getting the top to spin, then that "movie" is embedded in an animation that moves the "movie" across the stage. Don't think TC anilab can do that. But $$$... Animation lab can do simple animations that I've used to show data flow through networks so that might be all that you need - check out the gallery samples.

Won't get in to rendering and lighting - I've seen incredible photorealistic jobs done by all the major CAD programs, but haven't seen many reviews pro or con one way or another..

That's my $.02 - hope this helps
Leigh

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* October 22, 2010, 12:15:31 AM
#5
There is a fully functional FREE trial of either Deluxe or Pro available @ www.turbocad.com. It will give you some time assess it and ask any questions on this forum.

Good luck.

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* November 11, 2010, 10:30:48 AM
#6
Robains-

I was wondering, since I use both TC and C4D, how you made out.

Ed

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Rel 20 Pro Platinum


* November 20, 2010, 12:04:25 AM
#7
Thanks for all the input everyone.

I'm still undecided.  I can get the C4D R12 Studio version for $499 (normal price is $3200) (the upgrade from my C4D R11.5 Prime to R12 Studio is about $2200) so long as I prove I'm an enrolled student (I decided to take a few night/weekend courses on modeling and animation in addition to my real job as lead programmer for a small software company).   The Student version of C4D R12 Studio is functionally identical, but has a 3 year expire date.

The best part I like about C4D is the interface, it's extremely well organized compared to TurboCAD which just seems to place too many icons everywhere.  The things I don't like about C4D is the "step" of going from a primitive to a real "object" ... it's really hard to go back if you want to change something in the primitive (this may have changed in R12, not sure).  Animation is of course very easy to implement and C4D has a host of very nice dynamics in the Studio version.  Nurbs are great for "flowing" non-linear type of geometry.  C4D has some other benefits, performance being one of them and it's nice having a 64bit executable with access to lots of RAM.

But as you said, TC does do engineering/electrical better and feels easier to manipulate those objects.  But the TC interface just feels very "dated"  XP'ish.  I didn't spend too much time using the TC Trial version and never found anything in reflective surfaces nor translucent surface so I could see how they responded to light sources (maybe I missed something?)

If I go with TC Pro 17, how much is the upgrade to Platinum version if I feel I need it later?

It's really hard to decided with pluses and minuses in each.

Definitely nothing wrong with being a Dr. Who fan ... I mean Who isn't ? ;)

« Last Edit: November 20, 2010, 12:08:29 AM by robains »

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* November 20, 2010, 04:06:35 PM
#8
I came from AutoCAD, FastCAD, Chief Architect, and the blizzard of programs required to get things done is quite overwhelming at times.

Turbo CAD is harder than most to get comfortable with in my experience.  As far as the interface goes, I set up the Pop Up so that I have the tools I need when I need them.

That is the best and fastest way to access commands that I have found in any program bar none.  That and setting up a template file with Paper Space set up for the type of work you do is the lion share of being able to work productively in TC.

I would have to admit that I have struggled with TC, and at times still do.  Mostly with the way layers are being utilized through what appear to be two separate systems.

I have found that this forum has been a great help in understanding the basic procedures needed to accomplish dificult tasks.  I also am finding that the one potato two potato keystrokes that have to be just so are being covered fairly well in the latest 2D and 3D training guides from IMSI.

I am waiting for Don to do a V17 training bundle for Architectural like he had mentioned a while back.  I have heard a lot of good things about his tutorials.  (hint)  ;)

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TC V21 Pro Platinum  Win 7 Professional


November 20, 2010, 04:40:53 PM
#9
I am waiting for Don to do a V17 training bundle for Architectural like he had mentioned a while back.  I have heard a lot of good things about his tutorials.  (hint)  ;)

My memory isn't as good as it once was, so I need a reminder of the training bundle you mention.

These two fairly new architectural tutorials are pretty comprehensive, if you are interested:
http://www.textualcreations.ca/Textual%20Creations%20Shopping%20Page.html#Arch_Presentation_V17_Tutorial
http://www.textualcreations.ca/Textual%20Creations%20Shopping%20Page.html#Anatomy_TC_House_Tutorial


* November 20, 2010, 09:59:58 PM
#10
It was back a few months ago when you were working on the first V 17 Architectural tutorial.

You had mentioned that you were intending to put together a bundle when you had completed some upcoming tutorials.

I will check out the links you posted.  What I am most interested in is anything to do with the drafting palatte, section cuts and printing from Paper Space.  Rendering would also be a big plus.

I am already very experienced in framing and model building with Chief Architect, but TurboCAD has some interesting capabilities that I would like to be able to take full advantage of.

I find the drafting pallette to be very powerful, but a bit finiky. I have just not taken the time to really learn how to use it since I have other means to that same end.  I would however really like to learn all that I can in order to add to my toolbox of skills.  There have also been recent posts on using section cuts that are interesting.

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TC V21 Pro Platinum  Win 7 Professional


November 21, 2010, 07:00:38 AM
#11
It was back a few months ago when you were working on the first V 17 Architectural tutorial.

You had mentioned that you were intending to put together a bundle when you had completed some upcoming tutorials.

I will check out the links you posted.  What I am most interested in is anything to do with the drafting palatte, section cuts and printing from Paper Space.  Rendering would also be a big plus.

I am already very experienced in framing and model building with Chief Architect, but TurboCAD has some interesting capabilities that I would like to be able to take full advantage of.

I find the drafting pallette to be very powerful, but a bit finiky. I have just not taken the time to really learn how to use it since I have other means to that same end.  I would however really like to learn all that I can in order to add to my toolbox of skills.  There have also been recent posts on using section cuts that are interesting.

I received your email Rod and have sent a reply.