new at this, what do I need to start?


https://forum.reallusion.com/Topic314933.aspx
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By Rampa - 3 Years Ago
The compact 1060 system you mentioned in your other thread will be fine for iClone. I would start with it. Stick with Intel and Nvidia. AMD really will not save you much money, and seems to have more compatibility issues (with iClone).

If you do go for an inexpensive AMD card, the only one you should consider is the RX480/8 gig. Although you probably not find it any cheaper than an Nvidia 1060/6gig.

The GI in iC7 will run in realtime on any directX 11 or higher card with enough power, Nvidia or AMD. It does need to be at least GTX 970 level of power. I still say go with a 1060/6 gig.
By animagic - 3 Years Ago
It's iClone not iCloud...Wink

iClone 7 is coming, which only has a Pro version, so that's what you would get. The Standard version was always kind of limited.

As to Biblical figures, check the RL marketplace (http://city.reallusion.com/market/iclone) and search for "cc biblical". Quite a number of characters come up. If you need something special you can always approach the developer whose work you like.

I added "cc" to my search, which stands for Character Creator, because these are the new high-quality characters for iClone. Character Creator comes with iClone and allows all kinds of customizations. You do not want to get the older (G5) type characters, except for background roles (extras) in case you need crowds.

iClone has lip-synching built-in, and iClone 7 will have improvements for adding facial expressions. I believe the motion system will be improved as well. There are various motions packs available, and since your needs are basic at this point that should be sufficient for now. You can also customize and create your own motions with keyframing.

The RL marketplace can also be a resource to find props for your sets. I tried searching for "Middle East" and "Egypt" and various results came up.

3DXchange is a separate program to import assets into iClone (there is a lot more than can be done with it, but I'll keep it simple). So if the marketplace doesn't have what you want, you could check out 3D Warehouse (https://3dwarehouse.sketchup.com/), which has a large number of free models created by people using Sketchup. Not all models are of good quality, but many are. I use it frequently. It would be an extra expense, so if the marketplace provides what you need you can dispense with that.

The PC. This requires some thought, because over the years iClone has become more demanding. There is a new shader system that supports Global Illumination. (Shaders determine how things look.) In the real world, lighting consist of direct and indirect lighting. GI allows you to simulate the indirect lighting contribution. It gives improved results but also requires a fairly powerful system. For starters, you could still use the same lighting system as in iClone 6, which is less demanding and can still give very good results.

I have to get going now, so the PC specs will have to wait till later. Number one is the graphics card, which needs at least 4GB to avoid disappointment. It would be good to know your budget. (You are used to Mac prices...Tongue )
By rgreenidge - 3 Years Ago
Rampa, in my experience both are important depending on what you use in your scenes, NVidia cards work with some kind of particle crap, which I don't use. I bought both type cards AMD also, but I usually bough the card who gave me the most for the money. I've been buying mostly AMD video cards, because it was easier for me to look at the numbers, and to see which ones were more powerful, where it seemed like NVidia cards had hundreds of models just like their processors and wasn't that that simple choosing the top model to somewhere in between.. To be specific using iClone when I went from a video card with 1 GB of RAM,  to 2 GB of RAM, the only difference I saw was that I could smoothly pan around inside of my scenes, and when I went to a 8 GB Video card, it didn't solve the problem I had with the cars I bought from Big Boss, who told me I need at least 5 GB of RAM. Again it was something in the wheels of some cars that was slowing my playback choppy. I also read after I got the 8MB video card, that only 4 GB worked unless I had two 4K monitors, which I don't. To say that the Video card is the most important thing I will have to disagree. I can buy a 1080 card, and I would not be able to add more avatars, which was the most important thing to me if I only had 32 GB of mother board RAM. Also if you don't have the right processor on your motherboard, or the right motherboards you cannot use all the streams even if you have a NVidia 1080 Video card. The thing I want to point out, It's just not that simple to say the Video card is the most important. Other than panning around my scenes I've seen no difference in video quality from 1 GB to 8 GB with 3 different cards. The only difference I see is with the MP4 video encoder that came with iClone 4 & 5, and poor one with iClone 6, which gives me a smaller file. It's the reason I will probably not buy iClone 7, because they are not telling us what their output formats will be. I would love to see a H.265 or that they improved their mp4 (H.264) encoder. But I'm going to stick to PNG sequential until iClone stops crashing during rendering. As I said here for the first time, the only improvement I've seen on two different top of the line AMD to almost top of the line Intel system, is that with my video cards, I've only see a improvement when I'm panning while I'm working on a project. It doesn't stutter like with the 1 GB video card. To see what motherboard RAM does. I put two videos on YouTube, one with 64 GB of RAM on my motherboard. After I added all the lights that you see in the second video, I was only able to add 4 more avatars before the animation playback was off time with the music, and with the last avatar, I could not add puppet animation to it. It wouldn't activate. After I added 32 GB more of RAM for a total 96 GB, I was able to add puppet animation to that avatar. But after even that the playback was still a little off with the audio. The next day I maxed out my motherboard with 128 GB of RAM, I added more Avatars some of which you can barely see because they are in the shadows upstairs, and including a couple of CC characters, and I feel I can add a lot more because nothing has slowed down. There is no way the video card can do this. What would I get if upgraded to NVidia 1080? Nothing extra, I guarantee that. Even if it made my avatars and scenery sharper, once I output it to the video encoders iClone provides for us, we lose it. I compared a MP4 encoding to PNG Sequential converted to a mp4 with a good MP4 encoder, and the difference most people will not notice. In my conclusion a video card is important, but not as important as the RAM on the motherboard. These two videos on You tube show what 64GB of RAM compared to 128 GB RAM can do, and I could have added a lot more things to the scene, but I chose to stop here because I'd be blocking all the work I did. Now can anyone here show me on You tube or on here, how your project looks different on a let's say NVidia 1070 compared to a NVidia 1080? You can't. So most important? I don't think so. My new video is here:    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7TQlDD6EXRs   Older video with a nearly 64GB of RAM limitation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SMfEQudj0OQ both under rioleo8. Motherboard RAM prices seem to have risen since October. DDR4 Memory for 32 GB is around $200. Now and this is my interpretation that this is what Rampa is saying? If you bought 32GB of RAM for $200 and a NVidia GTX 1080 card which goes for about $600, it's more important. I'm saying if you bought a $200 video card and use 96 GB of RAM $600, it's the only way you could have added those Avatars and moving props in my project. I guarantee if I bought a GTX 1080 card, removed half my RAM memory and back to this project to a earlier saved date, add then one Avatar at a time, and before I reach to where I am now, I guarantee when I add avatar motions, it will grey out or not function. Now I know no one will do something as time wasting putting their old video card in their computer, but if you have a electronics or computer programming background you should know this. The proof is on YouTube, right in front of your eyes, and if I didn't state what video card I have, you wouldn't know what I have. Now that's my conclusion. I want to know what Rampa saw where he came to his conclusion that the Video card in his view is the most important thing in his projects so everyone can take notes and decide what works best for them. Let me make one thing clear, I'm not one of those AMD vs Intel guys. I want to get the most for my money. If Rampa or anyone here can prove to me by showing that having a GTX 1080 card stops my iClone from crashing, improves my mp4 encoding, I'll buy one tomorrow. I posted my results, for all to see, not theory everything works on paper or a blackboard. Is a GTX 1080 card worth paying $600 I really want to know. I'm showing everyone what I get with 64 GB of RAM and 128 GB RAM. I'm not here to argue put anyone down. I really want a reason to get the GTX 1080, but for myself I don't think it will change anything. Years ago someone told me the women in the Dominican Republic look better than the ones in Brazil. After sending him 100's of photo's of those I took photos of in Brazil, I got all kinds of excuses except any photos. I'm from Missouri when I don't believe things, I'm 66 and electronics has been my thing since 8. Sorry but that's the way I am, If I tell you something works like this, I will show you and I expect the same. If I don't know, I don't know and will tell you so. All I'm saying if you are going to say that video cards are the most important part of your computer system, I like to know how you came to this conclusion and based on how it affects the projects we work on iClone, and can you tell me what differences I will observe spending $400 for a GTX 1080? I have shown the difference between spending $400 on RAM. So what's the difference in spending $400 more on a video card, I guess that is my question, and can you show me?


 
By dante1st - 3 Years Ago
I used to always wonder whether it was the video card or ram that would have the biggest performance boost. 
By rgreenidge - 3 Years Ago
I'd like to add to what Animagic said. I'm not trying to scare anyone, but I've seen where at least I got two calls where people called and the power supply they bought burned out or caught their motherboard on fire. Luckily the CPU survived. But a bad or cheap power supply could fry your whole system if a part shorts out. Then your whole system can get fried. No, that's not a LED in your power supply that's glowing. Don't believe every power rating that's on the box. Take time to read the customer reviews. And if you system fries, maybe you'll get your money back, or a replacement power supply of the same, but nothing else. Some companies in China have about 6-8 names, same product thought. Everyone's budget is not the same we know that, and most of us have been there. I think I'll write a article on Reallusion and call it; Computers, software and upgrading from DOS. 
By bpkantor - 3 Years Ago
Hi all,

I am new here, wanting to get into iClone, but I need to get a PC first (I have a Mac without enough power to run it on Parallels). Basically my only experience with animation is using GoAnimate.com, so I am pretty green. I posted a couple questions within the past week. I am an ancient language teacher (teach Biblical Greek and Biblical Hebrew as if they were spoken languages) and want to be able to make short videos to illustrate little narratives and dialogues from the biblical text. Forgive me for being so ignorant of all this stuff, but I would definitely appreciate any help and answers you all can give me. I will outline what I want to be able to do, and then my question is what do I need to start working towards my goal.

What I want to do:
- make 1-5 minute short films of biblical stories
- want to be able to take pre-made stuff and not have to make it myself, I can pay if I need to (ancient Greece, ancient Israel, etc.)
- most of the films will involve simple actions like talking, walking to and from places, sitting, etc.

What do I need?
- Software: iClone 6 standard or pro or more?
- 3DXChange, is this helpful/necessary to get?
- I understand how to compare Macs, but I am quite ignorant when it comes to PCs. To get me started, could somebody please link me to the cheapest desktop PC that I can use iCloud one without getting a headache? At least that will help me to start searching...
- Tutorials, where should I go for tutorials to start learning how to run iClone?

Thank you all so much for your help. Just beginning to get into something like this can be kind of intimidating without knowing much about it so I really appreciate everyone's help.

Ben
By Rampa - 3 Years Ago
bpkantor (2/5/2017)
Thank you very much for such a helpful and detailed response. I appreciate it.

It is true I buy Macs, but I usually get them used. I have a Mac Mini, which I upgraded myself, and got a non-Apple monitor, so in the end I don't end up spending too much on Mac stuff.

I fully defer to your experience and trust that what you outlined makes the most sense and would be ideal, if I could spend that much. If I am working on a tighter budget (which I am), is iClone still workable with lesser specs? Say, for example I were to build a PC with the following as the basic elements:

intel i5 6500 Quad Core 3.2 GHz
16 GB Ram
nvidia GTX 1050Ti

Could this run iClone reasonably or will I spend more time waiting for things to happen than actually doing things? I know it exceeds the system requirements that Reallusion posts, but I assume that there is no better judge than experience for what the above would get me. My budget is more like $500 in trying to get into this. In short, the ideal is out of my price range, so is the less-than-ideal still workable (see above specs) or would it not be reasonable to run it with this?

Thanks again for all your help. I've really appreciated this community so far. Everyone has been helpful and encouraging!


This system would work pretty well, if you make sure to get the 4 gig 1050ti. If you can possibly swing it, get an Nvidia GTX 1060/6gig. That extra power, and especially the extra VRAM on the card, will go a long way.

The graphics card is the most important part of the system for iClone.

By rgreenidge - 3 Years Ago
A $500 iClone system? It may be done, but it would be hard doing it with Intel? You need to go to Micro Center and compare to Newegg because they had the best Motherboard/CPU combos I've seen. A AMD 460 video card which is pretty good is about $120, RAM memory, power supply and a simple case. Win10 (Oh boy another $100 and a cheap DVD ROM).  Hard drive, monitor? Try to get a AMD FX-CPU with 6 or 8 cores. 8 cores preferred. AMD bundle CPU & MB  8 core is a minimum of $160, but it has DDR3 memory. Sad to say 8 GB of this memory is about $55 a piece. 16 GB will probably work ok, but I would max it to 32 GB. We're talking about +$200 for 32GB of Mem. We're at $580 minus the Case and DVD ROM. Very hard for $600. Remember no hard drive or monitor also. I can't see it. Upgrading a IBM type computer would be about $500 and you already have Windows, a power supply, case, CD ROM. From scratch more like $700. Sorry, I was hoping I could find cheaper.   Good luck.!
By Snarp Farkle - 3 Years Ago
You might look at QVC's site for a good system too, I used their "5 Easy Payment Plan" setup to get my machine.  All Ill need to do in a year or so is upgrade the video card to a 6 or 8gig one, it came with 4gig which is good enough for now.
By rgreenidge - 3 Years Ago
In April, I'll be using iClone for 8 years. I don't know everything about it, or have used everything it offers. I spend a minimum about $40 a month for items I need, and created what I would say is about 60% of my props and scenery using sketch it, which that alone you can spend weeks or months doing. The more time you put in it, the better it can look. The first thing I did was to make or buy the locations I will be filming in, and make sure the sizes are in proportion to my main avatar characters. You will find that first thing you really need to know is how to scale things whether you buy on here or get from other places or make it yourself. I always used one avatar as my size reference. Things are going to be too big or small once you bring it to your scene, and sometimes finding it can be a pain. Where is this thing, and you find out it's bigger than your whole set. Once you've got all your sceneries, now you can work with your characters and decide how many. You can purchase a lot of them on here, but I'm using real people that I know to be the stars, and I find out for my self that though CC characters are more versatile, look better, but after spending hours messing with the faces, the heads and faces rarely look like the one I've spent hours with once it transfers to iClone. The faces I made with non-CC characters look exactly to what I made before I finalize it. People recognize my characters right away. As far as power, I wouldn't recommend a laptop, and I can't see spending less $1000 for a desktop if you are serious, especially If you spent Mac money like Animagic said. Not counting monitors, and I would recommend two, just because I need the see timeline and other menus at the same time usually, without blocking my almost full scene view. These are estimates, but you don't want to keep upgrading every payday. Yes you can go cheaper, but.. you don't want to buy something for $40 and find out it's not helping. I'm rounding off these prices, from the lowest price on line sellers using Intel, AMD you can get cheaper, but with a limited max RAM motherboard headroom. Power Supply $80, a good Motherboard $120, Video Card $200, CPU $400, RAM Memory 32 GB (use 2-16GB Modules, in case later you want to buy more) $200. So this is just to start and it's $1000. Minus the monitors, the storage drive(s), and CD or burners? Keep in mind you will need backup drives to be safe, you'll be spending days with iClone, not just hours or minutes. I keep my iClone stuff on it's own drive, and the videos made from it on another, all backed up after each session If I don't forget. Someone starting from scratch, I can easily see $2000 with no computer stuff from a older computer to use. With simple projects I can see folks spending $1000 for everything if you have a AMD based system. I have used both and the only advantage I have with my new Intel system, I went from 32 GB of RAM to 128 GB. And if someone would tell you it's over kill it depends on their projects, I have seen the difference between even 96 GB and 128 GB while I'm watching my projects play. But I have a lot of avatars in some scenes and want to add more. I don't know what everyone's budget is, but it's better to be able to add later, than to buy another motherboard and waste another $100 or so. Why did I switch to Intel for the first time in years? My onboard Ethernet stopped, and I started to buy the same MB, I have the same MB in another machine plus a few other computers I built for others. Then I started seeing the 8 memory slots on Intel, but not with AMD. So I looked and saw that Intel has the fastest CPU's and that the AMD versions weren't even close. I also wondered how 64 GB of RAM would work on iClone would it stop my crashing, could I add more stuff to a scene? Well the extra RAM works better than I imagined and I'm very happy with that. But as I found out with this and my music. If you are not pressed for money or a time schedule, you need to make a schedule to when you will work with iClone and stick to it, or nothing will get done, even if it's just looking and learning with the You Tube tutoring. You're not going to learn everything in a week, nor will you remember everything or where it is. I just save, and try that.  Good luck, and welcome to the club.
            
By JimmyB7 - 3 Years Ago
Just to add one footnote to animagic’s super list of helpful tips, if you need free music and sound effects for your projects try YouTube’s Audio and Music Library.  It requires a login but the collection is amazing.  Good luck.  LINK
By brand468 - 3 Years Ago
From https://reallusion.com/event/iClone7-preorder/

System Requirements
iClone 7 has the same system requirements as the iClone 6 DX11 System Requirements. >
For real-time GI editing in iClone 7, please refer to the recommended requirements for NVIDIA VXGI*:
Graphics card GeForce GTX 970 (4GB Memory), or above
Intel i5 dual core CPU, or higher
8GB main memory, or higher

Note:
To know more about NVIDIA’s VXGI, visit NVIDIA GeForce - Technology - VXGI Technology
For more about GPU requirements for VXGI, refer to VXGI – Supported GPUs
For computers with lower GPU hardware, you will need to turn off real-time GI viewport render for better editing performance, however you still can get fine render results with GI quality
GI also works with ATI cards, delivering correct visuals but with less performance

By dante1st - 3 Years Ago
Snarp Farkle (2/6/2017)
You might look at QVC's site for a good system too, I used their "5 Easy Payment Plan" setup to get my machine.  All Ill need to do in a year or so is upgrade the video card to a 6 or 8gig one, it came with 4gig which is good enough for now.


Out of curiosity, can I ask specifically which video card it is?
By bpkantor - 3 Years Ago
Thank you very much for such a helpful and detailed response. I appreciate it.

It is true I buy Macs, but I usually get them used. I have a Mac Mini, which I upgraded myself, and got a non-Apple monitor, so in the end I don't end up spending too much on Mac stuff.

I fully defer to your experience and trust that what you outlined makes the most sense and would be ideal, if I could spend that much. If I am working on a tighter budget (which I am), is iClone still workable with lesser specs? Say, for example I were to build a PC with the following as the basic elements:

intel i5 6500 Quad Core 3.2 GHz
16 GB Ram
nvidia GTX 1050Ti

Could this run iClone reasonably or will I spend more time waiting for things to happen than actually doing things? I know it exceeds the system requirements that Reallusion posts, but I assume that there is no better judge than experience for what the above would get me. My budget is more like $500 in trying to get into this. In short, the ideal is out of my price range, so is the less-than-ideal still workable (see above specs) or would it not be reasonable to run it with this?

Thanks again for all your help. I've really appreciated this community so far. Everyone has been helpful and encouraging!
By dante1st - 3 Years Ago
I'll touch on the part about tutorials, because I can speak from a complete noob perspective..


There's a ton of organized tutorials on Youtube. That's literally how I learned to use iClone. I literally had ZERO animating experience, I was just a random nobody, but wanted to try out 3D animation.

I watched a TON of tutorials over the span of a week or so, to learn how to use the program. You have to understand, I had no idea where to start. Where do I click on? What am I even supposed to be looking for? What are these buttons and how do they relate to each other? Trust me, those tutorials help. Here am I a few years later, about 1,000+ subscribers on Youtube (small compared to some, but big for me), and have my own little fan base on there (not too many or viewers of my material here on this website, but on Youtube I managed to get an audience).


I guess the point is, if I learned how to use it, anyone can.
By animagic - 3 Years Ago
Re "Cheap PC": Remember, when using an AMD graphics card, Global Illumination will have to be handled by the CPU and RAM, so one has to take that into account.

And whatever you do, DO NOT use a $20 brand-less power supply. We haven't talked much about power supplies, but a bad one can cause much grieve. I've used Corsair for my builds and have been quite pleased with it. There are several other good brands.

Some cases may come with a power supply, but again, get a respectable brand.