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Software Review: Poser 7, Pg. 2

Another common task would be to put dynamic clothing and hair on your actor. Though this would be a common task, it is not made terribly simple and requires navigating a rather complex cloth and hair physics room that doesn’t have simple presets. While you can often get some cool looking effects with hair by just rendering default physics with it, you will often find that the hair starts clipping through the skin, even though collision detection is on. With clothing it becomes even more complicated, because dynamic clothing has a tendency to fall down the body of the actor and straight through the floor if you don’t set it properly. For beginners, I would like to see some presets that make this reactive physics engine easier to use. We reviewed Vue 6 Infinite in this issue and it has enough presets when it comes to dynamic objects that react to things like gravity and breeze that even beginners can get very professional results. I would like to see some of these elements brought into the Poser environment to streamline things. (Currently, you can buy an additional program called PoserPhysics for Poser 7, which is supposed to simplify this feature, but I really think this sort of functionality should be included with Poser itself.)

Although I am familiar with the peculiarities of Poser, I would agree here as well. Even I have found that when creating cloth on a model it can become difficult to make it collide properly with other objects. Repetitive adjustments still need to be used to make your dynamically-clothed models as realistic as you would like. The dynamic hair has the same difficulties, which will definitely take beginners some time to familiarize themselves with the hair styling feature.

To conclude, although Poser is capable of much more complex things than DAZ|Studio, I really feel as though the design team at E-Frontier needs to sit down with D|S and find ways to incorporate the simplicity and reliability found in DAZ|Studio into Poser. Additionally, the dynamic behaviors of hair and clothing could take a page from Vue 6 Infinite for presets for new comers. The advanced features of Poser are complex enough on their own without over-complicating the more basic things which should be much simpler. (Additionally, you’ll want to make sure that you do not neglect to install the appropriate service packs for Poser 7, as there are some further control and import issues without the service pack.)

Depth of Options
From a program perspective, the depth of options available in Poser 7 is pretty intense. As you can probably guess from my earlier comparison between Poser 7 Revealed and Lightwave 8 Revealed, Poser 7 has evolved into a fully featured program that will allow you to do an amazing amount when it comes to placing, lighting, and animating your 3D scenes. With that said, there are some pretty big new features that have been added to Poser 7.

If this is just an update to your old poser software you will find a few additional features have made this product worth your while with animation layering, morphing tools, and non-linear animations. The good people of e-frontier have put a lot of thought, behind this to make animation a little easier. The .bvh exporter is great for importing to other animation programs which is another good reason to purchase this product.

Lip Sync. In the legacy versions matching up lip movement with a voice was a long process. It took forever to get it just right. Poser now brings you an automated Lip Synching ability. This feature is a unique designer that creates lip, head, and eye movement to match your imported sounds. It is a big help and time saver for those that are making models come to life. If your wallet falls short of cash to buy expensive motion capturing equipment then this is the way to go.

Multi-Undo. Poser finally introduces the multi undo function that all other versions never had. I couldn’t be more happy about this!

Non-linear Animation with Animation Layers. This creates life- like animations by combining multiple strands of action into one fluid animation using layers and the motion key frames between each layer automatically animate between poses. One good example of this would be through creating a general walking path for a character to follow, then adding a layer with the character’s hand waving, and finally adding a concluding layer that ends the walk in a standing pose. With these new features, your scene can become much more realistic and easy to animate!

Improved Animation. In addition to the animation layers, you can now also connect animation strings and poses, in addition to keying unique keyframes. This can allow you to create an animation string, save it into the library, and then paste it into another animation simply and easily. When combining your talent with what the program has to offer, you will be amazed with your results.

The morphing tool allows you to sculpt the face or body of a digital actor in a way that was previously only available in PhilC’s Face Putty tool in the Poser Toolbox.

Additional Content. Boasting over a Gig of models, lights, and animations, Poser 7 definitely has the most content of any of the Poser packages. Additionally, E-Frontier is making a nice amount of additional model content available for free after you activate your copy of Poser 7 online.

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