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So I've been wanting to get into 3d animation for a long time but I also know it's going to take me a while to get better at it. I have no problem pirating some software to hold me over. I'm not really looking to make money off of things just yet. But I've been tearing out my hair trying to decide if I should bite the bullet with completely learning Blender or Maya?

Seems like Blender has gotten better over the years but it looks like it's more headache and work over Maya.

I've read the sticky and I've been lurking for a while but I guess I just really want the big pro's and con's of both programs.
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Nigga you don't have to pirate Maya, get a student license. As far as pros, well Maya is widely used among studios as far as 3D Animation goes.

You CAN make awesome work on Blender as well I am sure, these are all tools to get a job done. But yeah, the amount of Online resources, job requirements, plugins, render engines, integration with other software, etc etc will vary on every software.
One last thing: while you can make quality work on almost every package, it WILL be easy to do modelling on x, while rigging is easier on y, and animation on z, and so on... personally I prefer Maya, but there's no reason not to try Blender, 3DSMax, or any other tool for yourself.
You'll never do even decent 3d animation until you master the fundamentals
blender will run better if you have a shit/average computer.
far as animation goes its completely up to you, there are amazing animations done in both maya and blender
if its for job purposes start with maya, if your intention is to just dick around with whatever get blender
From what I heard Blender had a better dope sheet and NLA editor or something like that.
could be, blender is improving at fast pace
Maya: better polymodeling, NURBS modeling, history is more useful than Blender modifiers, shelves
Blender: way less fuckups and crashes, better UVing, way better shortcuts. Plugins feel less like patchwork, GUI is consistent.
i feel like blender modeling is quite good, however the baking is terrible
you could do nurbs with few shapes but its not good yet
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good work is done in both. for animation i'd definitely say maya. way more quality free rigs and there are a lot of free tools.
Blender is fine and all, and the concepts used are the same across all programs, however Maya nd 3DS Max are the industry standards (not to mention made by the same company) so it would serve you well to learn one of them right out of the gate.

Like others have said, Maya (and to a lesser extent 3DS Max) have more plugins and tools available for them then the alternatives.

Max is ideal for architecture (being what it was originally designed for), giving you lots of intuitive hard surface modeling tools, and excellent lighting (you are able to plug in the stats from a real world lightbulb and get the exact same appearance in render).

Maya makes animating a lot nicer, hence why most films use it. I find lighting and rendering is a lot more of a pain with it, but that might just be my own lack of understanding. The UI is also way more all over the place; you can tell that a lot of features have been tacked on over time. However, the 2016 version has cleaned up the menus quite a lot, bringing it more up to par.

You've probably heard that Maya is prone to crashing, which is true when you are doing more complicated type stuff. The trade off is a much more powerful scripting program, and more advanced tools. Either way, you should be incrementally saving your work as you go no matter what program you use, so it is more of an annoyance then an issue.

I originally learned Maya at my college course, and then learned Max at my internship. The only real learning curve when switching programs is figuring out the layout and difference in tool names (why does Max call merging vertices "welding" anyway?). It all comes down to what you are planning to focus on personal preference.

There is no need to waste time pirating Maya or Max if you don't plan on profiting from it; you can get a free 3 year student license off their website. You even get to pick which version you want.

Everyone says you can use a student license? How, don't you have to be attending a community / university? Last time I looked it ask for student ID, and a bunch of reference numbers I couldn't possibly have?

I'm working and learning with Blender. I am not looking for a career in 3D. I'm just wanting to make 3D animations and such for my artworks and such. I wouldn't mind learning Maya for the simple fact I love using more than one program for most things. "Jack of all trades" type of mentality.
Google "maya student version" and it'll be the first result. You have to make a free Autodesk account first. I didn't have to put in a student ID or any of that nonsense. They want people to be able to learn the software for free so they can continue charging studios $6k per licence when those students get hired.
Blender's transform tools are a lot better, but Maya's pivot is much more useful than Blender's.
>which is true when you are doing more complicated type stuff
such as combining two objects. 10 crashes in 10 minutes today, and "just export it and reimport into a fresh scene" is probably the most annoying "fix" I have ever heard of.

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