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Hard surface design and sculpting: ZBrush, 3D Coat or main DCC software

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Andreicus polycounter lvl 3
Hey, so i'm evaluating the purchase of either 3D Coat or ZBrush, i like both softwares and i currently own ZBrush Core, for the moment i'm leaning towards 3D Coat mostly for 2 things: Price ( even with the upgrade discount from Core to Full version, ZBrush is still 710 € ) and Voxels.

I'm mostly interested in 3 things:

1) Sculpting for environments/props: rocks, ornaments, your usual high to low bake nothing complicated. I can do it in ZBrush Core without any problem.
2) Retopo: The current tools in ZBrush Core are limited for retopo, for the high poly mesh is fine but to make the low poly i always end up importing it into Maya after using Decimation Master because i can only go down to 20k tris ( Core limitation ) and there is no ZRemesher so i want to speed up the process.
3) Hard surface design: i want to get into hard surface design/concepting and i saw many people using either ZBrush or 3D Coat for this stuff especially when it comes to rounded surface like a hoverbike or spaceship so i'm thinking if i should stick with modeling in Maya or i should use a sculpting program.
Some people also use CAD programs but i don't like them.

So i want to hear your opinion about this: what is your preferred method to do hard surface design and in the case of sculpting which one do you prefer, 3D Coat or ZBrush ?

Replies

  • kanga
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    kanga polycounter
    I heard that 3D Coat is terrific for retopo. Im not sure about voxels.In the past each time I tried to install and use a demo of 3D Coat it froze my laptop. I just couldn't get it to work. That was a while ago though and Im guessing Coat has come a long way.

    I can only tell you about zBrush and if you plan to model in it it's fantastic. For retopo I still use Blender and just do like you: zap a decimated mesh to Blender because I am used to using a 3d app for that. Checking out 3D Coat on youtube shows both apps to be similar. If I were you I would download demos of both apps and give them a road test before deciding.
  • Andreicus
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    Andreicus polycounter lvl 3
    kanga said:
    I heard that 3D Coat is terrific for retopo. Im not sure about voxels.In the past each time I tried to install and use a demo of 3D Coat it froze my laptop. I just couldn't get it to work. That was a while ago though and Im guessing Coat has come a long way.

    I can only tell you about zBrush and if you plan to model in it it's fantastic. For retopo I still use Blender and just do like you: zap a decimated mesh to Blender because I am used to using a 3d app for that. Checking out 3D Coat on youtube shows both apps to be similar. If I were you I would download demos of both apps and give them a road test before deciding.
    I have been testing out 3d coat for the past few days because I already know zbrush but the more I use it the more I think that it is just a matter of preference, they are really similar. 
  • kanga
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    kanga polycounter
    Yeah the 3D Coat community looks pretty solid as well. Unless someone chimes in with more info I reckon you have your answer.
  • thomasp
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    thomasp sublime tool
    I'd add Mudbox which is a no-frills sculpting app. A good companion to a traditional poly modeller that doesn't require a lot of time spent learning the interface and avoiding possible workflow pitfalls.

    Blender might also be interesting since it contains both a poly modeller and decent sculpting functionality and on top of that allows for that boolean workflow you see used alot these days. It's also pretty fast unless you throw millions of polygons brute force style at it needlessly which isn't the wisest thing to anyway do unless you really like quality time spent in retopo and redoing work.

    At any rate the combination of poly/sub-d modeller, booleans and a bit of sculpting to add detail seems to me the way to go. 3D coat sure looks interesting, it also looks like a quirky app - and I'm saying that as a longtime ZBrush user.

  • Carlosan
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    Carlosan polycounter lvl 7
    Check this artist, hope his work helps to make your decision
    https://www.artstation.com/tenitsky


  • Andreicus
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    Andreicus polycounter lvl 3
    thomasp said:
    I'd add Mudbox which is a no-frills sculpting app. A good companion to a traditional poly modeller that doesn't require a lot of time spent learning the interface and avoiding possible workflow pitfalls.

    Blender might also be interesting since it contains both a poly modeller and decent sculpting functionality and on top of that allows for that boolean workflow you see used alot these days. It's also pretty fast unless you throw millions of polygons brute force style at it needlessly which isn't the wisest thing to anyway do unless you really like quality time spent in retopo and redoing work.

    At any rate the combination of poly/sub-d modeller, booleans and a bit of sculpting to add detail seems to me the way to go. 3D coat sure looks interesting, it also looks like a quirky app - and I'm saying that as a longtime ZBrush user.

    Carlosan said:
    Check this artist, hope his work helps to make your decision
    https://www.artstation.com/tenitsky


    Thanks
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