Brought to you by Norton Symantec
Microspot 3D Toolbox
- Some instability
This is a useful 3-D tool with potential for Mac users on a budget.
Price$ 15.00 (AUD)
Note: The price of this product is in US$.
Microspot 3D Toolbox is a bit of a curiosity: it's a truly modular 3-D application. You start off with a free base application that's useful in its own right as an object viewer. It lets you open 3DMF, Google Sketchup (.SKP) and 3DS files. If you've got 3DS Max, Vue or Poser in your workflow, you can import a combination of models from them — and Sketchup — into the same scene.
This scene can then be customised by dragging image files into the scene from the desktop, to create backgrounds and provide textures for objects. Texture replacement on models can take a bit of time, but if you click Ungroup you can separate models into component parts ready for individual texture application. You can also drill down further through the levels of grouping contained within the object, by using the Edit Group Menu command or alternatively Option-double clicking the 3-D object. Either method will open a new sub-document window with the object broken down into its components.
Once you've done this, holding down Ctrl and dragging textures onto the component will restrict their application to that single component. If you're thinking of buying Photoshop Extended for its 3-D texturing capabilities, you might want to check this out first.
However, if you want to save work, or do anything complicated, you'll need to purchase a serial number. This opens up the Library, Save and Export functions. You'll then also have access to Microspot's custom library and be able to start working with the plug-in pack modules. These modules, available for an additional cost, offer textures, modelling primitives, wall-creation tools and modelling tools. You can make the output look more natural by adding the Light and Render pack, which offers point lights, spotlights, sun and ambient brightness, and three renderers, including a raytrace renderer.
The most useful module is the Animation pack, which includes the Animation Tweener palette. This displays all animated objects, as well as any camera and light animations. You can animate several objects using variable 'tween' timings, as if they were on separate animation timeline tracks. The interface is slow to update in places, but the finished result looks fine once exported to QuickTime.
The Camera and Alignment pack is useful for animation too, with palettes for aligning objects, aligning the camera and nudging objects into place and switching the cursor options.
Several actions, such as Apply Gravity or Add Base Plate, provide workflow shortcuts when working in 3-D space. The base plate is a ground plane to cast shadows onto while rendering, but you'll need the Light & Render pack to use anything but wireframe and preview rendering.
The application crashed a couple of times, so it's essential to save your work.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei P20 Pro review: See it and believe the hype
- 2 Nokia 8 Sirocco review: A unique flagship that's more of a mutation than a market-leader
- 3 Nokia 6 (2018) review: Simple. Solid. Supreme.
- 4 Samsung Q9F Series QLED: Peak performance from a home entertainment heavyweight
- 5 Sony Xperia XA2 review: One last hurrah for OmniBalance
Latest News Articles
- Opinion: Is Microsoft already killing off Windows 7?
- Google bring SMS to PCs with Android Messages for Desktop
- WWDC 2018: Apple gives us a first look at an all-new Mac App Store
- Budget 2018: Government seeks to boost Australian AI capabilities
- Dropbox Rolls Out New AdminX Tools for Data Management
PCW Evaluation Team
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.
Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category
The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
- Huawei P20 Pro review: See it and believe the hype
- Computex 2018: Nvidia launches new AI-focused hardware and software platforms
- Computex 2018: Everything you missed at Asia's biggest tech tradeshow
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?