Inside 3d Studio Max 2: Modeling and Materials Paperback – Mar 1998
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The second volume of the most authoritative guide to 3D Studio MAX 2, this guide focuses on the best ways to create sophisticated models and materials. The first part of the book is about modeling and teaches you basic modeling concepts such as polygonal, patch, and Non-Uniform Rational B-Spline (NURBS) modeling, and how to work with curves and primitives. Next you learn how to create models for architectural, industrial, and mechanical design purposes. The authors also discuss how to model for real-time games, virtual reality, and the Web, and how to create high-detail, cinematic output and realistic character models. The second part of the book is about materials: you learn about the types of shaders, reflection and refraction concepts, ray tracing, and rendering, and then move on to design naturally occurring, man-made, fictional, special-effects, and animated materials. You also use the program for creating 2-D maps, which is helpful if you don't have an image editor. The third part of the book guides you through rendering effects, teaching you how to work with cameras, lights, glows, lens flares, highlights, and focal effects.
The intelligently organized guide features tutorials with step-by-step instructions as well as technical discussions and large, clear screen shots. The included CD-ROM has project files for the tutorials. There's also a full-color gallery of interesting models and scenes produced in 3D Studio Max, an appendix that teaches you about importing AutoCAD files into 3D Studio MAX 2, and another appendix that provides an overview of useful 3D Studio MAX plug-ins. --Kathleen Caster
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Most of these "problems" can be overcome, but all are downright frustrating, considering the good money you have to spend for it.
I don't blame the authors, they seem to know the topic well, but the editors really need to be lashed with a rubber hose.
There is an onslaught of tough-to-master techniques from page 1 on, which is both good and bad. If you are looking for some cool, time-saving techniques that show you HOW - this IS the place (I love all the hotkey tips!), but it is at the expense of losing the WHY you are doing things. Also, too many tutorials start with a .max file loaded off CD with no background as to how to create the starting point. If you don't understand lofting very well...you will learn very little from this book, except how to follow incomplete and confusing directions.
The other books in the series are great...but this one needs to stay on the shelf at the store if you are a beginner.
The quality of the finished product in each tutorial is also poor, a sad reflection on the quality of the overall book. IF this book _has_ been quality tested, (which I HIGHLY doubt!), I can only say that the authors have some serious problems and are suffering from delusions of adequacy.
For the price you pay, certainly not worth it, unless you REALLY need to learn your materials and can't find ANY other source.
...of course just my 2 cents.