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Why you should dump Cinema 4D for Houdini in 2023

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Well, it’s like the title says. I’m going to give you 10 compelling reasons why you, as a 3D Artist, should dump Cinema 4D, and start using Houdini instead, this year. But first a quick overview of the two companies.

Houdini is developed by Toronto-based SideFX, who adapted it from the PRISMS suite of procedural generation software tools.

Houdini is most commonly used for the creation of visual effects in film and television. It is used by major VFX companies such as Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar, DreamWorks Animation, Double Negative and ILM, to name a few.

Cinema 4D is a 3D software suite developed by the German company Maxon. It has gained a strong foothold in the marketing and advertising industries, chiefly for it’s 3d motion graphics capabilities and its simple user interface that allows for a super fast turn around on projects.

So with that quick introduction out of the way, let’s discuss 10 reasons why Houdini is superior to Cinema 4D.

Number 1. The node based workflow.
Houdini’s node-based workflow offers a level of flexibility and control that is unparalleled when compared to Cinema 4D’s layer-based, destructive workflow. In Houdini, each node represents a specific operation, and the connections between them create a procedural network, enabling artists to experiment and iterate with ease. This non-destructive approach allows for easy modification and fine-tuning of effects, without disrupting the entire project. On the other hand, Cinema 4D’s layer-based workflow relies on stacking operations in a linear manner, which can hinder the creative process and make revisiting previous stages challenging. Which in turn, can make your demanding clients even more challenging.

Number 2. Automatic History Control.
The node based workflow gives you an automatic, limitless history, allowing you to undo or tweak anything you did, since starting the project. In comparison packages like Cinema 4D and others, tend to have a fixed undo limit, beyond which, well, you’re screwed.

Number 3. It doesn’t require plugins.
Cinema 4D may be one of the leading 3d packages, but what if you one day, had the requirement to create a waterfall? Or a car explosion? Well, you would have to purchase 3rd party plugins like RealFlow and FumeFX to achieve this. Houdini has clouds, fluids, explosions and dozens of other simulation systems, all built in, natively. This allows for more control over your project, as these systems can communicate with your other geometry nodes seamlessly. Not to mention, save you money, and time.

Number 4. Better mograph.
Cinema 4D is known as the king of mograph, but what if I told you that Cinema 4D actually had superior ‘moGraph’, inverted commas. A common counter-argument is that too many nodes are required to achieve the same effect, as Cinema 4D. Well, here is a mograph effect created in Houdini, using only 3 nodes, which might be even fewer steps, than creating the same in Cinema 4D. Not to mention Houdini allows the integration of fluids and explosions into your moGraph type effects, allowing for crazier looking animations.

By: QuickVFX
Title: Why you should dump Cinema 4D for Houdini in 2023
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