which visuliser do you prefer?

snowmansnowman Registered User
I was fiddling around with capture the other day and about halfway through a show I wondered which of the four visualisers was the most preferred.

Any suggestions/comments?

Comments

  • stephlightstephlight Registered User
    edited November 2008
    I'm using Wysiwyg since V2 but updates are very expensive since 3 years, so I'm thinking about other solution (like a HogViz :D )
  • Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
    edited November 2008
    I concur with Steph....I've been invested into WYG for a VERY long time.

    I almost jumped ship to ESP, but R22 came out (R23 due out soon) and I'll stay....for now. If Cast can fix all their issues with the "Presentation" mode in WYG then I will stay for good.....otherwise I'll be forced to go the Vectorworks (which I use , but HATE:684: ) coupled with ESP route.
  • srautanesrautane Registered User, Hog Beta
    edited November 2008
    The same here Marty, the new versions of Wyg looked very promising. So, I also decided to stay working with Wyg. I also hope they get Presentation section better. Plotting is just awful in Wyg.
  • aranajoseluisaranajoseluis Registered User
    edited November 2008
    MSD is good for me.
    the new version 4.5 is not expensive.
    and the renders are goods.

    i prefer for plots in 2d...vector works..easy to use and understand.
  • jxgriffijxgriffi Registered User, DL Beta, Hog Beta
    edited November 2008
    I too am a Wyg guy...we've had it for 5 years. I seriously was thinking about jumping ship to ESP, but unlimited, plus the cost of Vectorworks was cost prohibitive. We paid up through 2010 so, at that point, we'll see if we stick with it or jump the shark....
  • MarkScottMarkScott Registered User
    edited November 2008
    Let me ask the question a slightly different way:

    If you were looking to buy your first visualizer, which way would you go?

    Mark.
  • stephlightstephlight Registered User
    edited November 2008
    Wysiwyg Or ESP.
  • RobfulRobful Registered User
    edited November 2008
    I use Capture.

    As most of my lighting is non-professional and small scale, I can't justify buying into the other systems. Besides, i like Capture - easy to use, does everything I need it to, graphics are vastly improved with the latest Polar edition and there are no ongioing subscription/support costs.

    Rob
  • snowmansnowman Registered User
    edited November 2008
    rob,

    I know exactly what thats like!

    The other problem I have is that as well as running H3PC and Capture on the same computer, I have a slow computer when it comes to complex 3-D rendering. Its funny I know, but I actually like running Capture 2005 because it is older and doesnt have as good graphics...it just makes a look and thats all I need
  • RobfulRobful Registered User
    edited November 2008
    Hi Snowman,

    I must admit, I much prefer the Polar graphics, though I understand where you're coming from. One thing I liked about 2005 was the ability to be able to match fixture brightnesses - useful for programming/focusing. Also, Polar tends to oversaturate filter colours - my pale straw tint is now very yellow!

    I've never tried to run Hog and Capture on the same machine. My laptop only just copes visualising full screen, so both programs together may cause melt down! If I'm demo-ing at a rehearsal, I borrow a friend's laptop to look after the Hog side of things, and hook it up to mine. Not been able to try polar graphics on the laptop - the ATI drivers can't cope with it and there are no up-to-date ones on the HP site. Very annoying! Give me NVidia anyday!

    Rob
  • Matthew TweddleMatthew Tweddle Registered User
    edited November 2008
    Hi Snowman.

    I started out using Wyg 21 about a year & a half ago. It was the first CAD platform for me. The beauty with Wyg is that the GUI and CAD design aspect is very easy to use. In no time at all I started producing some pretty cool venues which I work in. Now that Wyg 22 has been released the rendering looks infinitely better and I am happy to stay with Wyg for now.

    The downside of Wyg for me is 1) Very expensive software subscription which has to be paid yearly. The amount payable seems ok for large scale buisnesses, but for your average lighting Joe it's harsh. If your'e running Wyg Perform It's gonna cost you $1,119 US yearly just so you can aquire the new fixture & software updates. 2) Presentation mode still crashes a lot. Make sure you save your work before you go there. 3) Autofocus feature is not compatable with all lighting consoles. Just because a console can be used with Wyg as a visualizer, it doesn't mean that it also has the Autofocus feature. ( eg Strand 500 series consoles ). 4) I don't exactly love the control GUI in Design mode. It seems very dated to me now & is too small & fiddilly. So I pretty much control everything in Perform mode via an offline editor.

    Aside from that its all very cool on Wyg.

    Hope this helps.
  • Matthew TweddleMatthew Tweddle Registered User
    edited November 2008
    Hello All

    Considering looking into ESP vision.

    Can users please list the stronger & weaker aspects of this software.

    Your feedback would be very useful to me.

    Cheers.
  • snowmansnowman Registered User
    edited November 2008
    matthew,

    I havent used ESP vision too much (i.e. few days!). The main problem that I found, and that I mention above is that you need a powerful computer to operate it, and as I've found out from experience its not too good to have H3PC and the visuliser program on the same machine (ESPECIALLY if you've only got one screen!) because you cant see everything at the same time. It is doo-able though

    ummm..... what I'm trying to say is that if youve got a fast new computer she'll be right!
    It does what it's programmed to do and that's what matters
  • Matthew TweddleMatthew Tweddle Registered User
    edited November 2008
    Hi Snowman.

    Running my software on a Dell XPS M1710.
    CPU 2.33Ghz
    2G Ram
    512k Graphics Accelerator.

    Can run Wysiwyg & Hog IIIPC quite well on same machine via the loopback adaptor ( I only do this because I only have one computer ). GrandMA ole works well too ( minus some CAD orientation issues ).

    Works quite well until I start to tax it with lots of movers & fx running. Then things get jittery. This arrangement works well enough for pre-programming shows though. Would of course never do it on a live show.

    ESP vision ran very slowly on my laptop. Of course my lappy is underspecced in the CPU dept for its hungry requirements.
  • snowmansnowman Registered User
    edited November 2008
    you would have to talk to some people who have used both WYG and Vision to get a good idea.

    Personally I think whatever works best is what's worth doing, if WYG works fine why bother change?:dunno: especially if vision doesnt run properly.....
  • Steve HarperSteve Harper Registered User
    edited December 2008
    Hi there Snowman,

    I may be the right Guinea Pig at the right time. I've just decided to switch over from WYG to ESP ... I recently bought VectorWorks 2009 and ESP 2.3, waiting eagerly for 3.0, and would be happy to let you know what I discover in the coming weeks. In the meantime, below find my mini-treatise on what led me to the change, apart from a burning desire to ultimately rid my life of Microsoft:

    I am a very longtime WYG user ... My first serial dongle is #252. I really like the program in many ways. However, I've had the same mixed feelings about the program as many others have posted.

    WYG to me was a great concept, a totally innovative product at it's inception, very easy to use for the most part, a nice integration of paperwork. But WYG still has some stumbling blocks that remain unresolved. It crashes when pushed very hard, and other times as well. Presentation isn't great, and requires a whole series of "work-arounds" to force the look I want out of it. WYG has served us very well as a way to draw quick and dirty plots, and at the same time basic 3D Cad Flats to sell a concept, or to communicate to other elements of production. Oddly, we use the actual visualization component very little. I find it's useful to clean up palettes, double-check things, basic organization, but doesn't provide enough nuance or detail to be relevant as a true "Pre-Viz" program to me. Maybe none of them do ... but ESP looks the closest to me right now.

    One of the fundamental advantages of WYG is also one of it's downfalls ... specifically that it's a totally integrated program: CAD program, 3D modeling, lighting pre-visualizer, and spreadsheet ... all in one lighting specific package. This is incredibly ambitions, and commendable. The problem is that CAST has developed a program that is both ambitions, and serves a very small niche, and therefore has limitations in terms of resources ... hence the higher average cost per user I would assume. They are "lighting people" which makes their understanding of the end user greater, but being relatively small for a software company, they can't possibly pour the resources required in developing a world-class CAD component to their program, like AutoDesk or Nemetschek can. Plus they started so early, they became invested with both PC, and by necessity at the time, with OpenGL, rather than more powerful DirectX available later.

    I am beginning to see the whole dilemma as akin to buying a home stereo ... you can either pick the pieces separately, and get the best quality from each component, at greater cost probably ... or you can buy everything integrated into one box, save some money and time figuring it out, and have an easier to use "out of the box" experience. So, I think the underlying question, as many pointed out, is ask what your real goals are. It's a series of trade-offs. If you want the very best, with the highest learning curve, and highest overall cost, probably 3D MAX, Viz, or VW, coupled with ESP. If you don't have 6 months to learn VW, or more for the others, go with WYG, which is very easy to get going on. If you demand great presentation and fast real-time rendering, go with ESP/VW. If you want to spend less initially, go WYG, but prepare to pay more for updates. If you want it all, at a low price ... go fish.

    Ultimately I've decided that the "component" approach is the way for me to go ... Get the drawing program, the pre-visualizer, and the spreadsheet separated to get the most control and power. Re-learning a new program and workflow, and dropping 10K was not that exciting to me ... but the prospect of finally getting where we want to be is. We shall see.

    ... I'll know a lot more in a few months.

    PS - I also think it would be great for the Hog to ... umm ... "Host" a pre-viz solution in a more integrated fashion, like the GrandMA does. However, I don't think it's a good idea for HES to actually develop their own application head-to-toe. I imagine their hands are full with the Hog OS, and are best concentrating resources on perfecting that to the extent possible.
  • stephlightstephlight Registered User
    edited December 2008
    Just a question, what is the price of ESP full options and the price of Vectorworks.

    What are prices for the ESP update and vetorworks update.

    Same questions with 3DS.

    Thanks
  • Steve HarperSteve Harper Registered User
    edited December 2008
    ESP is priced by the universe:

    1U = $750
    2U = $1,500
    3U = $2,250

    ... and so on, adding 750 per universe, capped at 10 universes, where it becomes unlimited number of channels for $7500. The annual subscription is comparatively low, $150 per year, which is supposed to give you tech support and access to all upgrades. That's my understanding anyway. There is also an educational version for $450, and they sell "V-boxes" for DMX output to consoles that don't have direct connectivity.

    Of course the system requirements for ESP are pretty high, so factor that in, unless you run it on an Intel MAC, in which case I'm told any of them are fine, run in Boot Camp right now, and native MAC when 3.0 comes out.

    VectorWorks 2009 Spotlight with RenderWorks lists for $2,195, but I got a 25% discount on upgrading my VW 12.5 to 2009, so it might be worth calling Nemetschek and asking if they have any specials on the software itself.

    I looked into 3D Max about 6 months ago ... don't remember exactly, but want to say it was $4000 range, and was sold under a pretty tight distributorship, so there weren't any real deals I could find ... maybe save a few hundred with some looking.
  • stephlightstephlight Registered User
    edited December 2008
    Thanks Steve, I think I will prefer to buy a DP 8000 This year.

    I'm agree with you a hog pre-viz would be the best solution! :D

    Ps I think I found VW update, something between 500 to 600$ following versions.
  • Richard RasmussenRichard Rasmussen Registered User, Hog Beta
    edited December 2008
    I just heard rumors that grand MA 3D is going to start selling there new version for all consoles. Rumored release is june 2009. Did anyone else hear that rumor? Would that be comparable to Vison?
  • JeffMJeffM Registered User
    edited December 2008
    Looked into Wysiwyg for years. Overpriced and cumbersome to use and setup, do drawings and so on. takes to long to get the end result.
    Upgrades are also rediculously expensive.
    Then there is Vectorworks. Again, cumbersone to use and setup, do drawings and so on. If ESP vision could work without Vectorworks, it would be a great visulaizer to use.
    Best cad program hands down is Autocad. It's fast, inexpensive compared to Wig, and very user friendly.
    LD Assistant version 08 has visualization and uses artnet interface. Cad is Autodesk shell so it's already got the most powerful cad available.
    You can literally build your venue in a few minutes and have a finished drawing in a short amount of time.
    How much do you pay per universe of Wig control?
    With LD Assistant, you don't pay anything extra for the visualization or per universe and it has capability to handle more universe connectivity than you would ever use on a show.
    My upgrade cost from an earlier version of LD assistant without the visualization to the new version was under $1k.
    ESP vision rocks. If only it could be coupled with Autocad.
    WIG is just overpriced and takes too long to get what you want.
  • srautanesrautane Registered User, Hog Beta
    edited December 2008
    People who think Wyg's cad sucks, I recommend using Google Sketchup... very powerful and easy to use and Wyg supports it's native format.
  • Joe BleasdaleJoe Bleasdale Registered User
    edited August 2009
    Light Converse.... stunning visuals... seriously!!

    Best,
  • fritznpopfritznpop Registered User
    edited September 2009
    I use wyg . . . have for years. Of course cost is an issue with it, and of course the plots you get out of it are really weak. I do like Wyg tho. I only use it for pre-visualization, still cad on vectorworks (I know, I'm a glutton for punishment and extra-work). Nothing quite like that massive library . . . I am also interested in Light Converse.
  • drathbundrathbun Registered User
    edited October 2009
    srautane wrote: »
    People who think Wyg's cad sucks, I recommend using Google Sketchup... very powerful and easy to use and Wyg supports it's native format.

    +1 on Sketchup. I like to do all my 3D on Sketchup and then go to WYG. WYG has improved the CAD features slightly over the years but it is still an awful CAD environment.

    I've used WYG since 2003 and taught it since 2006 as part of my lighting curriculum, and the upgrades are just too pricey to continue especially with the freakin' dongle and dongle replacement policy.

    I could never get WYG to speak to Hog either. Changes on the HOG would reflect in WYG, but I couldn't pre-design in WYG and hook it up to HOG and get what I did in WYG to show up live in HOG. This is what I thought the product was FOR in the first place! According to the person I spoke to at Cast, WYG is not designed that way. It was designed to reflect what is live onstage in your WYG. I think that is BS... I mean, what is the POINT of a visualizer if you can't design offline and bring it to the live environment ready to go?

    I'm looking into ESP.
  • jxgriffijxgriffi Registered User, DL Beta, Hog Beta
    edited October 2009
    Actually...the Wyg autofocus stuff is now working correctly. It took them a while to get things right, but it does work now. I can select fixtures in Wyg and they show up in the Hog3. Give a focus position in WYG and they show up as P/T values in the Hog.

    So, that does work now....
  • drathbundrathbun Registered User
    edited October 2009
    Thanks JX!
  • serdar kastasserdar kastas Registered User
    edited October 2009
    light converse should be in the options! It is also very good and high quality ! There are also lots of special effects... (Pyro , heavy fog , water screen , laser , co2 and moving object , mirror ball , video input ..)
  • Innovative IlluminationsInnovative Illuminations Registered User
    edited October 2009
    Light Converse is by far the better value of all visualizers on the market.
  • kurtiswilkkurtiswilk Registered User
    edited November 2009
    I just did my last show of Wyg R22. and it saved my ass. I walked into a rig i did not pack. there was many many things missing.I didn"t get any in venue program time. Annyways Wyg did everything I needed it to. I had set up the show and programed with wyg a week before. CADing with it took less the 30 minutes, Placment took another 15, and addressing took 2. Granted it was a small show, 5 truss, 24 mac 250 Entour, 32 par, 13 led par, and 8 lekos.

    I run it all off a tablet pc (hp tx1228ca). Works wonders for me. I guess it really comes down to how you work. On a sidenote i do plots in VW 11. also only takes 30 min for an average plot
  • kurtiswilkkurtiswilk Registered User
    edited November 2009
    drathbun wrote: »
    I've used WYG since 2003 and taught it since 2006 as part of my lighting curriculum, and the upgrades are just too pricey to continue especially with the freakin' dongle and dongle replacement policy.


    Or it could have just been your awesome instruction, since you taught me.
  • rabeilerrabeiler Registered User
    edited March 2010
    Another vote for Light Converse. A much better value for the money compared to the others if you are looking for your first visualizer. It just keeps getting better and better.

    Ross
  • neil-NSLXneil-NSLX Registered User
    edited March 2010
    Another vote for Light Converse.

    I have been using WYSIWYG for a number of years, and I have ESP.

    I used someone elses Wyg, and hired a laptop when I needed it..... then when it came round to buying my own system I looked at various options.

    Because I draw in Vectorworks, ESP (at the time) was the best product on the market for me. So I bought it. However, since I have found that ESP isn't quite as good as I origionally thought it was. I have also recently tried using ESP on Mac which is in my opinion poor and not even at alpha quality.

    So, I moved on to Light Converse, and haven't looked back. Its an incredibly powerful piece of software. An NO YEARLY SUBSCRIPTION!! you pay your money and thats it!

    The problem is that it doesn't yet allow you to import VW drawings, but I think they are working on this.

    The videos are great in Light Converse too! I showed one to a band I am currently working with and they were blown away. That said, it renders them in AVI's, and my 1.23min video was 1GB!! And you can input content from a Media Server onto LED Screens, Projection Screens etc.

    That said, I must say that WYSIWYG is by far the quickest thing I have ever used for quickly drawing rigs, and quickly getting trusses built, lights flown etc...
  • OliLightsOliLights Registered User
    edited March 2010
    For the record i use. ESP Vision 3 on running under MAC OSX twinned with Vectorworks 2010. I Find this to be a very usable and time efficient solution because everything can be done in one workflow.

    I was a wyg user and still use MSD for some projects, but for me ESP (when they get it fully sorted) will pack the power to do most things.

    I find the support from ESP to be very good too. Keep up the good work AJ, Kensy and the Team.

    I just wish Barco/ HES / Flying Pig would produce a connectivity driver for MAC, then you wouldn't need the DP8 to get ArtNET into vision.

    MacPRO 8 Core 2.93Ghz
    16GB RAM
    ATI 512MB Graphics
    Vision 3
    VW 2010
  • JeffMJeffM Registered User
    edited March 2010
    LD assistant is by far the best CAD software for designing lighting and now with the visualizer is the best value of any out there.
    WIG is way overpriced and Vectorworks just sucks for CAD period. And you have to buy the visualizer separately making it expensive also.
    How many universes? How about this> as many as you can possibly need!
    If you have the units on the plot and the console is patched, then you have control period. Non of this buying universes crap!
    Check their sofware out. AUTOCAD by Autodesk is the best CAD software on the planet!!!!
    Where else can you draw a line and build a truss out of it in seconds?
    Draw a box and extrude it, turning it into a stage in seconds?
    Add projectors and screens to the drawing and actually have graphics or video running on the screens when rendered?
    Best client presentation available, fastest design CAD, generates all paperwork from patch, channel, focus, color, gobo, bill of materials, 2d/3d simultaniously as you draw.
  • MLorenzMLorenz Registered User, Hog Beta
    edited April 2010
    JeffM wrote: »
    AUTOCAD by Autodesk is the best CAD software on the planet!!!!
    Where else can you draw a line and build a truss out of it in seconds?
    Draw a box and extrude it, turning it into a stage in seconds?
    Add projectors and screens to the drawing and actually have graphics or video running on the screens when rendered?
    Best client presentation available, fastest design CAD, generates all paperwork from patch, channel, focus, color, gobo, bill of materials, 2d/3d simultaniously as you draw.

    Vectorworks with Spotlight ;-)
  • JeffMJeffM Registered User
    edited May 2010
    Vectorworks can't do any of that!!!!!
  • MLorenzMLorenz Registered User, Hog Beta
    edited May 2010
    Ever tried VW with Spotlight?
    Cause this it what I do...
    Drawing lines with the truss-tool -> there´s a truss
    need a curved one? draw an arc
    need a stage, draw a box use the stage tool -> theres a stage, already with textures
    Paperworks.... almost the the same method...
  • JeffMJeffM Registered User
    edited May 2010
    Had it given to me to try out. It's terrible. slow, cumbersome and doesn't do dwg formatting well at all either.
    There is a reason Autodesks autocad is an industry standard and has been for many years.
  • drathbundrathbun Registered User
    edited September 2010
    kurtiswilk wrote: »
    Or it could have just been your awesome instruction, since you taught me.

    Yes but what I taught you and what you learned might be two different things hmm? :)
  • kurtiswilkkurtiswilk Registered User
    edited October 2010
    true but you provided the first paving stones on that road.
  • Firewood1Firewood1 Registered User, Hog Beta
    edited July 2012
    Capture Polar all the way. Stunning visuals and superb technical support.
  • XOP15XOP15 Registered User, Hog Beta
    edited August 2012
    MSD for me, works great with hog pc on the same Computer, imports straight from Vectorworks, low yearly subscription,

    Anyone want to buy my copy of ESP v3 for Mac 1 universe, PM me if interested.
  • MWPS1MWPS1 Registered User
    edited August 2012
    I have found that cost of wyg is very prohibitive so I use Vectorworks with ESP gives you a full CAD tool in VW with a good visualizer in ESP.
  • Marty PostmaMarty Postma Registered User
    edited August 2012
    MWPS1 wrote: »
    I have found that cost of wyg is very prohibitive

    I'm not going to argue about the merits and/or drawbacks of these products since a lot of it comes down to personal preference in the end.

    However, Vectorworks + ESP is far more expensive from the start as well as annually. Here's the numbers as of Aug 2012 comparing products with similar feature sets:

    Vectorworks Spotlight + Renderworks w/ ESP unlimited bundle - $9,300.00
    WYSIWYG Perform - $5,800.00

    Vectorworks upgrades (every 1-2 years) - approx $500.00
    ESP Unlimited annual subscription - $1,350.00
    WYG Perform annual subscription - $1,200.00

    WYG is cheaper by over 50% to purchase initially, and the annual costs are also about 50% less.

    Again, I'm not speaking to functions or features on either platform, but on costs I think you need to re-examine your numbers.
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