Pros and Cons of Poser

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ThisIsNoName
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Pros and Cons of Poser

#1 Post by ThisIsNoName » Wed Jun 06, 2012 7:09 pm

Hopefully this is in the right section (feel free to move it if it isn't).

I saw that at least a few people on the forum use Poser to generate their sprites, and I was thinking of maybe getting myself a copy. But considering that it's between 250 and 500 dollars, I really want to make sure that it's something that will actually help creating sprites (and possibly animations *crosses fingers*).

Right now I'm using Blender to create models, but eventually I get to the point where I have to rig it to actually make it look decent (who knew?). The main problem is that, especially since I'm fairly new to modeling, it takes forever to rig a model and then once I do, I realize that there is some small thing I want to change for the model, so I have to go to an older file that's still mirrored, fix it, import it into the file with the rig, etc. I also completely suck at animation, so it would be nice to work with software that's specifically meant for it.

Anyways, the main questions I wanted to ask are:
1. How easy is it to learn Poser? Does it have a steep learning, or can it be used pretty much out of the box.
2. Are there any features you couldn't live without? Are there any features you could?
3. Do you use Poser mainly for the content, or more for what the program can do?

If you don't feel comfortable answering part of the question, don't worry about it. Also, it would be nice to hear from both experienced users and those just getting used to the software, so feel free to answer even if you don't think you're experienced enough.

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#2 Post by fleet » Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:33 pm

I use DAZ Studio 3D, so I can't answer any of your questions about Poser.
I wish you success.
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Some are at http://www.the-new-lagoon.com. NSFW
Poorly done hand-drawn art is still poorly done art. Be a Poser (or better yet, use DAZ Studio 3D) - dare to be different.

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#3 Post by HumbertTheHorse » Thu Jun 07, 2012 12:17 pm

Poser is not a professional 3D application, despite being used successfully by professionals, and a big step down from blender. If you intend to make your own models I would suggest against poser as it used almost entirely for pre-made, pre-rigged content. As fleet eluded, DAZ 3D http://www.daz3d.com/ is entirely as capable as Poser and free. Their business model is to profit on all the content you buy.

Two little things to keep in mind.
Poser work will always look like Poser work, same with DAZ 3D.
Using the program isn't a stepping stone to get better at 3d.


Learning to Rig is a painful process in 3D. Like most things, it goes back to where the bones are placed. Almost every pro app has either plugins and/or premade rigs which really does simplify the process. Are you in school? A student copy of Maya would cost less and leave less to be desired. If you have any general question about rigging, I don't use blender, just ask?

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#4 Post by ThisIsNoName » Thu Jun 07, 2012 3:44 pm

HumbertTheHorse wrote:Poser is not a professional 3D application, despite being used successfully by professionals, and a big step down from blender. If you intend to make your own models I would suggest against poser as it used almost entirely for pre-made, pre-rigged content. As fleet eluded, DAZ 3D http://www.daz3d.com/ is entirely as capable as Poser and free. Their business model is to profit on all the content you buy.
I create my own models in Blender, but it gets a bit disheartening seeing them in the same pose all the time. My main problem is that I don't know when to start rigging: is the best time after texturing, or before, or should it be the very last step?
HumbertTheHorse wrote:Two little things to keep in mind.
Poser work will always look like Poser work, same with DAZ 3D.
Using the program isn't a stepping stone to get better at 3d.
I'm fairly confident in modeling with Blender, but it's everything else that's getting me down. Also, if I did get poser, I would probably do the rigging, posing, animating, etc in Poser then export it to Blender for rendering (Although Poser 9 does look like it can do some fairly awesome stuff when it comes to rendering).

HumbertTheHorse wrote:Learning to Rig is a painful process in 3D. Like most things, it goes back to where the bones are placed. Almost every pro app has either plugins and/or premade rigs which really does simplify the process. Are you in school? A student copy of Maya would cost less and leave less to be desired. If you have any general question about rigging, I don't use blender, just ask?
Sadly, I'm not in school anymore. I have to say that I'm really satisfied with Blender, but since it does very nearly everything, from rendering to rigging to UV mapping, it's hard to glean how to do one specific thing. That's partially why I wanted to get Poser. Since it focuses only on rigging and posing, it seems like it should be a lot easier to learn than in a program designed to do everything.

I would like to hear from some others before I make a final decision. But assuming I don't get Poser, do you think it would be easier to start with a pre-built rig and learn how to use a rig before trying to create them, or should I just push through with learning from scratch?

Thanks for taking the time to answer.

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#5 Post by Crocosquirrel » Thu Jun 07, 2012 4:59 pm

Poser's original purpose was to help people learn to draw anatomy. It's still in my mind best used to do that, but that's me.

There are a few things Poser does well, a few things it does that Studio does not, and some other things it does not do. Knowing what those things are is a good chunk of the battle.

Here we go.

1) Poser's barriers to entry are rather low when you get down to it. It's expensive for the non-pro, but not to such a degree that you're going to kill yourself trying. The learning curve isn't horribly steep when compared to Maya or Blender. The rigging tools in earlier versions were somewhat arcane, but they've gotten better in recent iterations.

2) If you're trying to lay out a scene for reference purposes, then it's probably the easiest tool to use. Same for poses-- you have a series of dials off to the right that you can manipulate, and at least theoretically make any pose you need. You can do something similar in Studio, but the special tool they use is much harder to use

3) Poser possesses proper animation keyframe animation tools in all iterations from Poser 5 on, as well as the ability to save animation sets directly. You can set up a complete walk cycle in a few minutes, with practice. Studio has a thing called Aniblocks, which are most definitely not the same thing. It's a pain to make them, for a start.

4) Poser has the built-in ability for dynamic cloth, hair, and etc, that can start from most any .obj or prop file that will fit over the model in question.

5) Poser and Studio only take their own rigs. There is some crossover, but the technologies they're using have diverged, and at this point, the two products have started to attempt to compete directly. The chances of it ever being entirely fixed are getting very remote.

6) Don't put away Blender just yet: Poser and Studio are incapable of modeling or UVMapping. Both can be used for rigging for themselves, once modeled and grouped. Save your mapping and texturing for after rigging. If you do it before, and you make any changes to the mesh, you'll need to remap and retexture. This is common for any 3D work. Save your textures for last.

7) Poser's rigging tools are packed into the base program. Studio requires you shell out extra above and beyond the Basic software to get the tools, and by the time you're done with that, you might as well have paid for Poser. Spend less money.

8) Newest content from DAZ3D is all for the Genesis figure inherent to Studio 4, which is pretty much useless in Poser. Take that for what it's worth. Victoria/Micheal 4 still work for Poser. Most other sites sell for the Generation 3 and 4 figures, and not for Genesis.

9) If you're any good with lighting, you can get something close to pro-quality out of Poser and it's Firefly renderer. 3Delight can get some nice results as well, but the learning curve is steeper. Like any other renderer, you pays your money and takes your chances.

10) the Poser community in general is more likely to be patient about explaining things if you need, and you can always look up Bagginsbill if you need shader help. The Studio-only crowd seems to believe that if you don't already know, you're a noob and a moron, and shouldn't be allowed to waste their air.

11) Last, but not least, there is extensive documentation both with the software and as external books for Poser. Studio's documentation last I saw of it was a mixed bag of versions, from the original forward to Studio 4. Poser implementations also tend to stick around for a couple of years, whereas new versions of Studio like to break things from the previous iterations. Most Studio 4 content won't work in 3 at all. Poser content usually will work, although stuff made with Poser Pro 2012 will generate some grumbling in, say, Poser 6 while it loads. After that, it generally works as advertised.

You'll still need Blender to make things, but hopefully this makes for a decent rundown for you. Studio is good for what it does, and the technology is a tad better in some spots. Personally, I'll take stability over glitter every time.

Edit: I got Poser 6, and had learned enough about it inside of three hours to be able to render a workable scene.
I'm going to get off my soap-box now, and let you get back to your day.

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#6 Post by HumbertTheHorse » Thu Jun 07, 2012 9:53 pm

On rigging, I'd use a well tested rig, such as this one http://www.sintel.org/news/sintel-lite/ , and build the model around it. Changing the proportions of the bones doesn't matter, so that won't limit you. If you use the same rig for all your characters each animation you create can be used on all the characters without having to do anything. No way you would ever reuse your first rig. Or second for that matter.

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#7 Post by Crocosquirrel » Fri Jun 08, 2012 12:14 am

HumbertTheHorse wrote:On rigging, I'd use a well tested rig, such as this one http://www.sintel.org/news/sintel-lite/ , and build the model around it. Changing the proportions of the bones doesn't matter, so that won't limit you. If you use the same rig for all your characters each animation you create can be used on all the characters without having to do anything. No way you would ever reuse your first rig. Or second for that matter.
Sure, that would be easy, but does he learn anything that way? Somehow, I don't think so. OP, take my advice: Lean to rig, learn to model, learn to morph. It's not easy, and it might not be a lot of fun some days, but you won't be beholden to someone else to keep things running.

In this case, nothing necessarily wrong with what my learned colleague says-- the model is CC-BY. The question is, do you want to be be required to attribute, or spend the few extra hours to dedicating a few cells of grey matter learning to do it yourself and be able to do whatever you want with your work?
I'm going to get off my soap-box now, and let you get back to your day.

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#8 Post by ThisIsNoName » Fri Jun 08, 2012 9:25 am

DarkSpartan wrote:
HumbertTheHorse wrote:On rigging, I'd use a well tested rig, such as this one http://www.sintel.org/news/sintel-lite/ , and build the model around it. Changing the proportions of the bones doesn't matter, so that won't limit you. If you use the same rig for all your characters each animation you create can be used on all the characters without having to do anything. No way you would ever reuse your first rig. Or second for that matter.
Sure, that would be easy, but does he learn anything that way? Somehow, I don't think so. OP, take my advice: Lean to rig, learn to model, learn to morph. It's not easy, and it might not be a lot of fun some days, but you won't be beholden to someone else to keep things running.

In this case, nothing necessarily wrong with what my learned colleague says-- the model is CC-BY. The question is, do you want to be be required to attribute, or spend the few extra hours to dedicating a few cells of grey matter learning to do it yourself and be able to do whatever you want with your work?
Well, after reading the suggestions, I think I'm probably just going to play around with the Sintel model and rig to see how a properly rigged model works. Then I'll create my own rig for the model I'm working on, since it has some rather unique anatomy (wings attached to arms, almost like a dragon).

Anyways, I just noticed that this is getting a little off topic (going from Poser to rigging in general). Do you mind if I create a new thread that's dedicated more for rigging and 3d in general? Also, that way if anyone wants to add anything more about Poser, or has any questions, they can do so without having to interupt another discussion. I think I'm going to wait with Poser, and try to get better with the concepts of rigging before I decide either way.

EDIT:

I just created the thread with the model I was talking about over in the H-forums (NSFW obviously):
http://lemmasoft.renai.us/forums/viewto ... 28&t=15630
Last edited by ThisIsNoName on Fri Jun 08, 2012 1:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#9 Post by HumbertTheHorse » Fri Jun 08, 2012 10:22 am

Let me then bow out by saying my experience with poser is from a very dated version. I do not recall even having the ability to rig or maybe I just never learned what it could do. DarkSpartan, and others in here, clearly know Poser better than I do. I intended no disrespect to them with my comments about Poser. I come on too strong many times, I know that. :oops:

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Re: Pros and Cons of Poser

#10 Post by Carassaurat » Fri Jun 08, 2012 1:56 pm

Blender comes with the Rigify plugin (which you may have to enable in User Preferences -> Addons), which can create a very serviceable rig. Here's a video tutorial - it's not as daunting as the 15 minute length would suggest. I know I've found it to be a godsend, I hate rigging!

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