Geek Brain Dump Useful App Reviews: Swift3D by eRain

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Geek Brain Dump Useful App Reviews: Swift3D

Swift3D by eRain.com

www.erain.com

‘A 3D Program that was built for doing simple Flash Animations.’

That was the tag line most who communicated what Swift3D was for back in 2004, when it was version three or so.

Now on version six (current), Swift3D is a mid-ranged 3D design tool and is very powerful.

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It’s it built from the ground up for website animation, but it gets deeper the more creative you are. Thinking things out to save time and costs.

Of course you get instant access to basic shapes:

• Cube (Square Box)
• Sphere (Ball)
• Cone (Triangle Ice Cream Cone)
• Torus (Ring Loop)
• Cylinder

And a few others. But the program shines when you venture into the Extrusion Editor and Lathe Editor tools.

 

Extrusion allows you to put points in any way you’d like. The end result is like a chiseled block.

Example: A set of basic stair steps.

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That is easy as few clicks for a few steps. This Extrude section is GREAT for converting flat 2D Logos into 3D Logos. Users can even import images for reference to build or to trace over.

Lathe allows you make objects that were made on a lathe machine in carpentry. Think of a Vase (using this as example instead of a flask), in Lathe Editor you can make points of one side, top to bottom part all as one piece and hollowed out.

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Once you understand both tools, your creativity grows.

You can build soda cans, soda bottles, straws, pipes of all types, vases, and so much more. Then move onto modeling more advanced objects.

Textures. Swift3Dv6 comes preloaded with textures, but the best of this feature? You can make and import your own textures.

The main two types of texture image formats accepted are JPG and PNG. With these textures, once imported, you can drag and drop the texture to make sure it is just right. If not, edit the image texture in your image editor, then import it again.

The Advanced Modeler is a great addition to the application. It allows for the bending and moving of points, edges and more. But note, any object edited in there can not be edited any more in neither the Extrusion Editor nor the Lathe Editor.

Another feature includes, importing files.

You can import in the:

• .3DS format from other 3D programs
• .ai format Adobe Illustrator files saved to Illustrator CS5 format
• .eps
• dxf and dxb, though I recommend not to do that as those files cause issues down the production line

That means you can build some things in other programs and import them into your projects.

Users can also export objects built in Swift3Dv6 as an object or as a scene to the .3DS format to be used in other 3D programs.

Frames can be exported as:

Vector
• SWF
• EPS
• AI (Adobe Illustrator)
• SVG

Raster
• JPG
• PNG
• TIF
• AVI
• MOV
• FLV
• SWF

All the standard web formats a designer, printer, web designer, graphic artist, graphic designer, hobbyist could need to be productive and creative.

Animation, the fun part. This program was not made to do advanced animation like a Pixar film. But if you plan correctly you can model and animate Luxor Sr. and Luxor Jr. from the Pixar animated title screens.

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Be sure to go to www.erain.com/Community/Examples for the User Showcase. You can see many examples of what can be modeled.

This is a great beginner to advanced 3D model program. Some users move on to Lightwave and Maya once they can afford them. Applying knowledge gained here in a more simple program.

This review goes over just some of the features. There are many more things you will learn as you become familiar with the program and become more advanced. Such as lighting, shadows, line art, meshing and more.

Download the demo and try it out.

www.erain.com/Downloads/Trials

Pros: Easy to learn and quick to pick up and learn. Loads of export options, import Adobe Illustrator files, straight forward export and use in SwishMax program.

Cons: Can not export file format OBJ or STL (for 3D Printing).

OS: Windows and Mac

Note: I was not paid for this review and these are my words, experience and honest opinion.

Why no music, sound or voice over in the video?  This was a 10 minutes and 25 second video coming in at 29MB on the smallest setting.  In HD, 237 MB, so it exceeded GBD’s file limit and I had to cut the video into four sections.  Next time, I will plan more effectively.

Author

Warren Galloway

Warren Galloway is a currently a freelance multimedia web designer. Is that even a title any more? Digital Media Specialist - You Want it Digitally, I can do it. "Eli for President, we should be happy, but also very afraid."

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