Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

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Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Eldormain » Thu, 17Jan19 07:46

Hi All, I have been reading through several threads geared for us beginners and I have some more questions.

I have been familiarizing myself with DAZ3D. Going through the tutorials and working with it outside of them as well. My time is being split at the moment between that and looking at the various sites for what I will need to augment what the program gave. What I am looking for is the best bang for the buck. So, I am thinking there is a balance between need, want, and must have. I know need and must have sound similar but this is the difference I would like to define. All the lighting and shaders that would be needed to finish a render are great but if you don't have the figures or items or sets to shade and light then the purchase is fruitless, at least at first.

I have compiled a list of what I am seeing from other threads as good suggestions. I would like to share and am tremendously interested in feedback from those with experience or input. The list follows in no particular order:

Michael 4 (4.2? Base? Or is it better to get one of the large bundles?)
Victoria 4 (same inquiry as above)
Victoria/Michael 4 Morphs++ (4.2 morphs++?)
Genesis Female Body Morphs
Genesis Female Head Morphs
Genesis Male Body Morphs
Genesis Male Head Morphs (are their other morphing pakcages that are needed or are these a good start?)
More Skins (people, places, etc)
Clothing (for both male and female)
Props (varies, many options, probably going to get them as needed)
Environments (Housing, exteriors, businesses, cars, greenery)
Lighting
Shading

Doing a rough count in my head and relating it to a story idea I have I am looking at a minimum of 30 things to purchase. I know, I know, this is extremely conservative. But keep in mind I am just starting. This could and will lead to a decent chunk of change. Especially, because I have been noticing that the items that look better cost more.

Oh, and I didn't include poses and expressions, although, I should have; because I think I will be doing a lot of that myself. At least, at first. I also haven't included any of the sexy bits (probably really included under More Skins) or animations (which I am in all likelihood going to wait a while before delving into the latter, we shall see).

>breathes deeply and exhales a purifying breath< Okay, looking forward to feedback and/or referrals to threads I haven't read yet.

I appreciate your time and knowledge,

Cheers,

Eldormain
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Mik » Thu, 17Jan19 10:59

I'm not sure if I would use Vic/Mic 4/Genesis base models.
There is a lot of content for it, some of it looks good with iray shaders, some look a little bit outdated or crappy (assuming that you want to do iray renders).
There are products to use this content on a Genesis 2 base model which gives you the advantage of a better moving/ better rigged base model.

If you want to show sexual interaction you need what Daz calls "anatomical elements", the original ones are only in the pro bundles for the newer models Victoria 6/7 pro and Michael 6/7 pro or in the morphs++ for Michael 4 and I think Victoria 4 pro bundle...but there are alternatives on renderotica and even some free ones, but it is mostly not as convienient as using the original ones.

The face and body morphs are used for characters you buy for your base models, as well as for your own individual character design, there are additional products with several presets for the morphs, but you can do this all by yourself.

There is a lot of free quality content out there, I think you've seen the thread here, and if you wait for sales you can often save about 50 % or more with the paid content, sometimes there are "creation" kits available which is really versatile, e.g. these product to build an outdoor street scenario.

http://www.daz3d.com/streets

even a free one

https://www.renderosity.com/mod/freestu ... t-03/60381

or a house bundle

http://www.daz3d.com/home-one-bundle


There are nice shader presets (to buy) to use older skins with iray rendering which is really useful, but I've never bought any lighting setups myself and there is some shader content that comes for free with daz...

for Genesis 2

http://www.daz3d.com/beautiful-skin-gen ... ray-bundle
http://www.daz3d.com/iray-smart-convert ... -genesis-2

for Vic/Mic 4 / Genesis

http://www.daz3d.com/iray-converter-for ... n-4-bundle
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Ehlanna » Thu, 17Jan19 11:55

Will you be using Iray or 3Delight (or another render engine) to produce the output? Each use different lighting and shaders (natively), though some to convert between the render engines.
The Genesis range of figures you get free with Daz Studio, you need to purchase Victoria 4.2 and Michael 4. Any of the figures you obtain will likely need the various morph additions to help you make them look unique.
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Mortze » Thu, 17Jan19 15:23

I'm not sure, respectfully, Mik, that the question if the rendering will be done with IRay or 3DLight, should be a criteria in choosing the figures. I use exclusively M4 and V4 and I've rendered Finding Miranda totally in IRay. Only if you're planing in rendering extreme close ups of the models where skin details really matter would that be important since Gen3 figures have textures optimized for IRay.

As a parenthesis you should choose your rendering engine, either IRay or 3DLight, based on your personal preference of image look and on your hardware setup. You'll only be able to enjoy IRay if you have a rather powerful Graphic Card setup and it must be an NVIDIA card. If you don't have a powerful NVIDIA card you'll have to go with 3DLight.

As for the choice of the figure I've already discussed it elsewhere. If you choose V4/M4 you'll have lots of content available but those are figures that won't have NEW content made for them made in the next years. It's like a Playstation 2. Lots of games out there but there won't be any new releases for that platform. On the other side, Genesis 3 is what's up now. There isn't much content for them now but most of the content that will be released will be for Gen3.

My advice would be for you to acquire a starter bundle, with a male and female figure. They have some clothes, and might have some props and a setting. You should also acquire free content.
And learn the basics of the software and how to make pictures.
Don't invest tons of money for a hobby and then you give up because you don't get along with it or it doesn't motivate you. Go low budget at first until you think you like the software and you like learning and working with it. If you enjoy it then you'll gladly buy more stuff.
Learn composition, posing, lighting. That's free and ready to use in the software. For instance, I never bought and used light content. I made my own with what the software provides.
For isntance, there's this starter bundle http://www.daz3d.com/victoria-4-2-complete if you choose V4. There are others for the G3 family.
Search for a free environment, or even buy one that you like, like a bedroom and you're good to start. With that start trying the software and rendering. Post your pics and ask for critics and advise. Look for tutorials free in youtube and deviant art. Daz Studio site has also a good forum with a group for beginners.

You don't want to buy a list of things and have a great content library and decide to give up on that all out of frustration.
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby MaxCarna » Thu, 17Jan19 16:42

Eldormain,

My best advice about purchasing in Daz marketplace is wait for good offers.

A regular base character of any generation costs $44.90, but I already bought by $4.00. Before christmas there was a great offer, now since of it, only weak offers. They change every day.

Daz Studio already has Genesis (5º generation), Genesis 2 (6º generation) and Genesis 3 (7º generation) for free. I wouldn't spend money on V4 (4º generation).

In my last conference of items I checked that I already have 960 items purchased, most for free. Many V4/M4, and I don't use nothing of it in months. Genesis (5ª) is a strange generation, I recommend genesis 2 or 3.

1. For exteriors you will need skies. Skydome don't work with iRay. Try this http://www.daz3d.com/skies-of-iradiance ... s-for-iray or http://www.daz3d.com/iray-worlds-skydome. Or try to fit a HDRI image with a distant light.

2. You can assemble objects using primitives, just apply a shader, Daz Studio already has some built-in, as you can see here viewtopic.php?f=30&t=3959

3. You can create houses for free in Sweet Home as you can see here viewtopic.php?f=30&t=3866

4. Don't waste money on poses, you can reach them by yourself, Power Pose can help to go faster. Expressions are harder, you should by at least the base expression for your base character like http://www.daz3d.com/genesis-3-female-expressions

5. About clothes, if there are many offers for V4 and you are using genesis 3 for example, you can buy a good converter like http://www.daz3d.com/wear-them-all-auto ... 3-female-s . Always aim for magnetized clothes, otherwise you will have a lott of work to fit them when you customize your character.

That's what I can remember now.
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Mik » Thu, 17Jan19 16:53

Sorry Mortze, you got me wrong, but my wording was also really bad, was meant like there is a lot of stuff out there for V4/M4, but especially some of the older/free stuff come with really outdated or crappy textures, and these look even worse rendered in iray than in 3delight, or at least they do in in my opinion...and to do new texturing is hard for beginners.

And although you/your art were one of the reasons I've started with 3D render art myself I have to respectfully disagree with you in 2-3 points... ;)

Especially daz is pushing G3 really hard and there is a lot of content available now, talking of characters and clothing, but for sure not that much free stuff.
At Renderosity however, there are still a few artists which actual produce clothing and characters for V4/M4 and even for close ups these look great.

This is a character skin from 2015 from Maddelirium which wasn't made for daz studio and came only with poser mats.
The skin is converted for G2 and adapted for daz with Sickleyield's Beautiful Skin for iray and I think it doesn't look that bad speaking of realism...

http://s23.postimg.org/cwc1lmd7f/Face.jpg

Again, no offense, I'm fan of your art... [img]images/icones/icon13.gif[/img]
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Sarchx » Thu, 17Jan19 17:00

I agree, that the render engine you decide to use, should be based on your hardware. Personally I prefer Iray.

Regarding the figures, I'd ignore V4/M4 and go for V7/M7 (Or any other 7 version, since they are based on Genesis 3.) I'd buy 1 of each gender, as a pro bundle to get the anatomical elements.
It's true there isn't as much content (i.e. clothes) for them yet, as there is for V4/M4, but there is plenty of choices, for whatever you are looking for, and more new stuff comming everyday. So I doubt you'll run into problem, finding what you need/want for them.
Where the main difference, is with the prices. There is more free stuff for V4/M4, and prices are usually lower, as the stuff is older, but you can save a lot by buying things when they are on sale. (And there is sales everyday).

When it comes to shaders, Some are good/nice to have - but you don't need all of them.......Trust me on this one [img]images/icones/icon14.gif[/img]

As for lighting, I think it's a balance of time/money. Do you want to spend time getting it just right, or do you buy a preset - which you probably are going to spend some time in getting right for your scene/picture.
This goes for expressions and poses as well.
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Mortze » Thu, 17Jan19 18:55

Mik wrote:Again, no offense, I'm fan of your art...

None taken, and thnk you!

Mik wrote:Especially daz is pushing G3 really hard and there is a lot of content available now, talking of characters and clothing, but for sure not that much free stuff.
At Renderosity however, there are still a few artists which actual produce clothing and characters for V4/M4 and even for close ups these look great.

What I meant is out of personal frustration. I check Daz3D and Renderosity every day for new content and about 90% of the time, all the clothes, shoes, hair, skins and morphs are for Genesis 3 derived models. That for the past 6 months or more. It's a trend. Where it's true that at Renderosity you can find, ocasionally, a content creator that releases something for V4/M4, it almost never happen at Daz3D now.
Daz decided to abandon V4/M4 for Gen3 for a pure mercantile reason. Gen3 figures are Daz Studio exclusives, they don't work, or work badly, in Poser.
Sure, there is some great content for Gen3 now, but the amount of material is residual compared to what you have for V4/M4.
I'm very slowly building a library for Gen 3, for survival reasons.
For the moment I'm happy with V4/M4, despite the immense flaws of the figures compared to Gen 3 figures, but I foresee that I might have to migrate for another figure soon. And I'm not talking about Gen 3 :p

Sarchx wrote:Regarding the figures, I'd ignore V4/M4 and go for V7/M7 (Or any other 7 version, since they are based on Genesis 3.) I'd buy 1 of each gender, as a pro bundle to get the anatomical elements.
It's true there isn't as much content (i.e. clothes) for them yet, as there is for V4/M4, but there is plenty of choices, for whatever you are looking for, and more new stuff comming everyday. So I doubt you'll run into problem, finding what you need/want for them.
Where the main difference, is with the prices. There is more free stuff for V4/M4, and prices are usually lower, as the stuff is older, but you can save a lot by buying things when they are on sale. (And there is sales everyday).

Where I starting today I would probably do that. I'm not sure if Gen 3 figures have penises and vaginas that would please me (not the best phrasing), I haven't looked into it deeply (phrasing...).

Sarchx wrote:When it comes to shaders, Some are good/nice to have - but you don't need all of them.......Trust me on this one

I agree. I only use about 15% of the ones I have in my library. Once you get to understand how texture, bum, displacement and transparency maps work, and the settings in Surfaces, you will start using always the same shaders tweaking them or even creating your own.

Sarchx wrote:As for lighting, I think it's a balance of time/money. Do you want to spend time getting it just right, or do you buy a preset - which you probably are going to spend some time in getting right for your scene/picture.
This goes for expressions and poses as well.

I'd advise to avoid poses and lights presets. You will want to have maximum control on your scene and on your finished product. Presets are only good for one thing, fast work. But you'll eventually take lots of time correcting any preset and moving some features to your vision that you might as well not use any preset and start the posing or lighting from scratch. You need to understand the basics of lighting and posing first. That take lots of time. Lots! But it's best to have the skills and knowledges and then decide to use presets. It's like car gears; automatic or manual. I ride manual. I've learned to drive on manual. I can drive automatic too. But someone who has learned automatic and drive automatic all his life won't know how to drive manual when in need.
I'd buy some sets of preset poses for one reason only. That's how I work; to quickly pose the character to a pose near the one I need (they all load with the T pose) and then I'll work it from there.
Expressions presets, I won't recommend any. I acquired a few in the begging and soon decided not to use any of them. I simply don't find any that I like.
I don't use light presets either. HDRIs presets, on the other hand, are very useful if you'll work with HDRIs lights. Those aren't easy to do by yourself in Photoshop.
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Eldormain » Thu, 17Jan19 22:56

This is great. Thanks all for the time and information.

Here is some of what I have picked up so far. Get a Starter pack of some sort for both genders. Forget poses and expressions. Don't forget about skies. Look into Sweet Home 3D. Pick up a couple other odds and ends just to satisfy myself.

All the while working with DAZ to become as familiar with all of its aspects and options. Mortze, I do see myself spending a lot of time working with HDRI.

Now for some followup questions:
The Sweet Homes end user license I am assuming is friendly? Wait, you're all off the hook...
"The free version of Sweet Home 3D application, the Furniture Library Editor and Textures Library Editor applications, as well as Sweet Home 3D JS library are distributed under the GNU General Public License; you can use them, copy them, redistribute them and/or modify them under the terms of that license as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version. For more details, please read..." 'What? You mean I have to read?' I am including this for the other beginners. It was probably covered at that thread.

Where do you most often run into Gensis 2 vs 3 issues? (To keep the question relavent to the thread focus this question relating to purchases).

...

I have been writing this post for about an hour now. I keep getting distracted going to various sites linked. Thanks so much for the swift and informative answers. I will keep checking back for updates.

Cheers,

Eldormain
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby MaxCarna » Thu, 17Jan19 23:46

Eldormain wrote:Where do you most often run into Gensis 2 vs 3 issues? (To keep the question relavent to the thread focus this question relating to purchases).

Eldormain


I really liked Genesis 2, more than Genesis 3, I started about July in last year. But they added a lot of stuff and new base characters for Genesis 3 along the year. Very good offers, in about november. For example, one base character in each two days for $4.00 after getting 8 legacy items for $2.99. Possibly I have more items for Genesis 3 than 2 now.

If you are interested in erotic material (penises, vaginas, ass, cum and so on) the best place to get them is Renderotica. There isn't many items for Genesis 3 as they are for Genesis 2, this can be a decisive factor.

They have same prices on Daz Marketplace.
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Mik » Fri, 17Jan20 00:06

Wow, Erogenesis has released his own standalone Schlong at renderotica, haven't noticed this yet, it is also for G2M and seems to support the original gen textures...
Unfortunately just for Poser and no Daz support atm.

http://www.renderotica.com/store/sku/56 ... -Core-Pack
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby tlaero » Fri, 17Jan20 02:46

Eldormain wrote:Michael 4 (4.2? Base? Or is it better to get one of the large bundles?)
Victoria 4 (same inquiry as above)
Victoria/Michael 4 Morphs++ (4.2 morphs++?)
Genesis Female Body Morphs
Genesis Female Head Morphs
Genesis Male Body Morphs
Genesis Male Head Morphs (are their other morphing pakcages that are needed or are these a good start?)


The way I read this is that you were planning to get both V4 and Genesis. You definitely shouldn't do that. Pick one generation and focus on it. There are pros and cons to the various generations, but there isn't really any place where you NEED both. That's just a way to spend more money. Better to buy the morphs for one generation and spend the money you would have spent on the morphs for the other generation on clothes or hair styles.

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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby MaxCarna » Fri, 17Jan20 03:12

tlaero wrote:The way I read this is that you were planning to get both V4 and Genesis. You definitely shouldn't do that. Pick one generation and focus on it. There are pros and cons to the various generations, but there isn't really any place where you NEED both. That's just a way to spend more money. Better to buy the morphs for one generation and spend the money you would have spent on the morphs for the other generation on clothes or hair styles.
Tlaero


That's true.

And reminded another tip: put items like Body morphs, Head morphs, Head Expressions in your Wishlist. Check daily if they are with discount, never buys at full price. In the fast grab session, items appears with 70% off from time to time, for example.

If you want to go deep on Daz, joining the platinum club is a great idea.
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby Eldormain » Fri, 17Jan20 05:49

Excellent points. Thank you both.

Tlaero, to make sure I got this right, the V4 and M4 are Genesis 2; correct? Then the Gen 3 is used by the newer characters like V7 and M7. From what I have been reading at the DAZ site it seems like some of the proper morphs come with certain starter bundles.

MaxCarna, that's a great suggestion. Patience was one of things I had meant to mention in my last post.

Excellent, all these 2 cents, I have 12 cents now. [img]images/icones/icon13.gif[/img]

Cheers,

Eldormain
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Re: Suggestions for Best Bang for the Buck

Postby MaxCarna » Fri, 17Jan20 06:31

Eldormain wrote:

the V4 and M4 are Genesis 2; correct?

Eldormain


No, no

V4(Victoria 4) and M4 (Michael 4) are the 4º generation.

Genesis is the 5º generation. There is a Victoria 5 http://www.daz3d.com/victoria-5 Victoria 5 and Genesis had the same base generation.

Genesis 2 is the 6º generation, here is Victoria 6 http://www.daz3d.com/victoria-6

And finally Genesis 3 the 7º generation, Victoria 7 http://www.daz3d.com/victoria-7

I understood the following: the first tool they made is Poser, 1º to 4º generations were made for Poser. When they released Daz Studio, they create the Genesis concept, the next step, 5º generation. Then some features were added to Daz Studio to work with Poser legacy items.

For example, when you load a Genesis, Genesis 2... figure in Daz Studio, they instant load it to the scene. When you load a Victoria 4 figure, you see several scripts running, before the figure appears.

Old school guys ( :D ) bought Poser long time ago, because it isn't free even in our days, and got used with Victoria 4. The new guys usually get Daz Studio because it is free, with all 3 genesis generations for free. Sometimes they listen the old guys talking and just go and bought Victoria 4, like I did :(
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