Cinema 4D Studio – the perfect application for professional 3D artists

cinema_4d_iconCreativity is an awesome outlet. Some of my most relaxing times are when I am busy creating something, be that writing, drawing, sculpting or painting. As computers are one of my most favorite things, being able to combine my creativity with my love of technology is pretty cool. Its for this reason that I really like Cinema 4D Studio. It’s a graphics tool for your Windows PC.

Cinema 4D Studio is a great tool for professional, 3D artists. If you want to create advanced 3D graphics but need a helping hand, then this may be a great choice for you. Cinema 4D Studio adds advanced character tools, hair, a physics engine and an unlimited client network for rendering. The results can be stunning. Cinema 4D Studio can tackle just about any project you throw at.

Cinema 4D Studio’s character tools make it easy to create character rigs and advanced character animations. Adding hair or fur to characters is fast and simple. You can easily grow, comb, style and animate hair and fur easily. The physics engine makes it simple to perform complex collisions and interaction between any number of objects.

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One of the app’s best features is Network rendering. As any graphic artist knows, rendering can take quite a long time, even on the more advanced and more powerful computers available today. Network rendering allows you to take advantage of all computers on your network and can help render your animations faster.

While Cinema 4D Studio is designed for advanced 3D, the extra tools found in it are still user-friendly and intuitive. Generating advanced 3D affects such as hair is pretty easy and fast. The app does much of the work for you. For example, hair will automatically swoosh and sway as you move your character around; and making thousands of objects collide with each other only takes a few mouse clicks to set up.

While the app may be great, its completely out the consumer price range at nearly $4000 USD, as of this writing. Unless you’re a serious graphic artist, or unless this app is something that your company can purchase for you, this isn’t something a regular user will purchase.

Download Cinema 4D Studio

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Create your own stunning logo with Logo Design Studio

Brand identity is one of the cornerstones of good business, which is why a great logo is essential. For those who don’t want to cough up big money for a design firm, Logo Design Studio provides all of the easy-to-use tools that you’ll need to make your own unique logo.

Whatever medium you’re designing for, from letterheads to banners, Logo Design Studio has hundreds of industry-based templates to inspire you. The simply laid out workspace provides you with thousands of graphic objects and artwork, creative textures, slogans and special effects to help you make a striking and unique logo for your brand – be it a business, sports team or even just an event. Within minutes you’ll have a professional-standard logo made to your exact standards and specifications.

For those without the design expertise to create their own logo from scratch, Logo Design Studio is a great, easy-to-use alternative, with bags of creative potential. With thousands of examples and assets to work with, you’re almost guaranteed to find something that catches your eye. With a comprehensive set of editing tools you’ll be able to tweak and alter your logo as much as you want.

One note though, the demo version of this software might contain all of the functionality of the paid offering, but it’s also been packaged with lower quality images to keep the size of the download down. Our advice is to give the demo a try, and if you’re getting results that you’re happy with, upgrade to the full software for a high-quality end result.

Download Logo Design Studio

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Give your digital photos the professional touch with PhotoFiltre

I’ve said this a couple of times now, but it’s very true – with the Holidays come and gone, you’ve probably taken quite a number of digital photos that you’d like to do something really cool with. I see it nearly every year. Post-holiday sales of graphic apps are generally very good for one reason: people want to retouch their photos and give them a professional touch. This is why I really like applications like PhotoFiltre. It’s a prosumer photo retouching application for Windows.

PhotoFiltre allows you to do simple or advanced adjustments to an image and apply a vast range of filters to it. It’s simple and intuitive to use; and has a shallow learning curve. Its toolbar gives you access to the standard filters with just a few clicks. It also gives the application itself, a robust look.

PhotoFiltre has a wide range of filters, allowing novice users to familiarize themselves with the world of graphics. You can find the standard adjustment functions – brightness, contrast, dyed, saturation, gamma correction – and its artistic filters – watercolor, pastels, Indian ink, pointillism, puzzle effect via both toolbars and menus. The application has more than 100 different filters.

PhotoFiltre uses both automatic and lasso/polygon vectored selection methods to select objects and photo elements. Both allow you to select a customized form by drawing a shape by hand or using a series of lines. Every selection can be saved into a separate file, to be used later on.

You can further enhance your photos with PhotoMasque.  You can create advanced contour and transparency effects on your images by using preset masks. PhotoFiltre’s masks are gray scale images, where white is the transparency color.  Opacity increases as the shades of gray become darker. Black is completely opaque. PhotoMasque comes with several basic masks to inspire you to create your own.

Read full review | Download PhotoFiltre

 

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Quickly capture, edit, and color with PicPick

As a technology journalist, I am CONSTANTLY grabbing screenshots or taking and tweaking pictures of both software and hardware products I’m reviewing or writing articles about. As a software QA director and tester, I’m always taking screen shots of software defects and anomalies, annotating them and including them in emails and defect reports for developers and project managers.  This is why I like PicPick. It’s a graphics tool and system tray utility for Windows.

PicPick is a user friendly, full featured graphics and painting app  suitable for software developers, graphic designers as well as the home user. It is an all-in-one program that provides a screen capturing tool, image editor, color picker and palette, and even a whiteboard. It has just about everything that you’d find and need in a shareware or commercial application; but it loads quickly, sitting quietly in the system tray until needed.

PicPick is an interesting application. It does most everything that a commercial application would do and a bit more; but is offered as freeware. It’s a decent application but reminds me a great deal of an enhanced version of Windows Paint. While this isn’t a huge issue for consumer users, commercial users, who are required to purchase a license, may object, despite the reasonable price point.

download PicPick

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MSI unleashes the R6870 Hawk with Propeller Blade technology

MSI announces the next-generation Hawk series, the R6870 Hawk graphics card. Equipped with the advanced Twin Frozr III thermal design, the all new R6870 Hawk is the world’s first graphics card to use propeller blade technology. When compared to traditional fans, the air flow is increased by 20%, allowing the GPU temperature to be up to 21 degrees lower. Furthermore, it uses the 8+2 phase PWM design to provide the GPU with 2 times the power supply, along with triple overvoltage functions that allow further evolution of R6870 Hawk’s overclocking capability.

MSI exclusive propeller blade technology: Air flow increased by 20%

The R6870 Hawk is equipped with the advanced version of Twin Frozr III cooling design with the MSI-exclusive propeller blade technology. When compared with traditional fan blade design, it not only increases the air flow by 20%, but the grooved surface on the fan blade further extends the range of air flow, removing more heat generated by the graphics card’s materials and parts. Additionally, dual 8cm PWM fans, SuperPipe technology and a nickel-plated copper base allow the heat to be removed quickly and effectively. When compared to the reference design, the GPU temperature is decreased by up to 21 degrees, completely validating the excellent cooling effects of the next-generation Twin Frozr III thermal design.

Considering the diversity of graphic card users, MSI has developed the exclusive P/S Switch function for users to adjust fan speed between the Performance Mode and Silent Mode. The former emphasizes an enhanced cooling power that can significantly reduce GPU temperature to keep the graphic card at the optimal working condition, while the latter stresses on quiet operations for users to keep noise minimal while playing games or watching a movie. As both modes deliver excellent cooling performance, even the pickiest power users can always keep the environment under control according to their needs.

PWM enhancement and triple overvoltage support Over-clocking potential outbreak
In order to provide users with the optimal display performance, the R6870 Hawk uses the 8+2 phase PWM design. Compared to the 4+1 design for the reference design, it provides twice the power support, increasing overclocking stability. Together with MSI’s exclusive Afterburner overclocking software, the R6870 Hawk supports GPU/Memory/VDDCI triple voltage adjustment, increasing the overclocking potential!

Besides the unique power and voltage design, through V-Check Points users can easily use a multi-meter and monitor the GPU/Memory/VDDCI voltage status. Overclocking is also made easy and simple on the R6870 Hawk by using the Afterburner overclocking software to monitor all aspects of graphics card performance, as well as save up to 5 user-defined overclocking profiles.

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