POV Ray StrataVision 3D

3D modeling and rendering is one of the most processor intensive tasks a computer can perform. A few years ago the 3D effects and animation you saw on TV or in the movies were generally created on expensive workstations manufactured by Silicon Graphics. These computers cost tens of thousands of dollars each and Hollywood special effects companies like Industrial Light and Magic would employ huge fleets of them to render the individual frames of movies like Jurassic Park.

Due to the exponential increase in speed and power of personal computers, these days more and more of this work is done on PCs and Macintosh computers. This means for an investment of less than $10,000 anyone can buy a high-end Mac or PC and a good 3D software package along with a video editing application and produce broadcast quality 3D film or video animations.

You could use your existing hardware and programs that are available for free or nominal shareware fees and begin learning 3D modeling now. Since most commercial 3D software costs from several hundred to several thousand dollars this is a good way to 'test the waters' before making a significant financial investment. Another consideration is that most current commercial 3D software requires fairly new and high-powered hardware to perform acceptably. Most of these 'cheap' solutions will perform acceptably on older systems. Since I have an older system ( PowerMac 9650/350 circa early '98), and my software budget is meager, I've learned a lot about free 3D software.


StrataVision 3D
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