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Jaakko

New update 9.0.6

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6 hours ago, FZnoob said:

"Thanks so much to all you guys who are effectively beta testers"

...and who effectively paid for the privilege.

That seems a bit harsh.  Some of us are beta testers by choice and some are by default.  However, I challenge anyone out there to find a perfect piece of software in this industry.  I have used many of them and they can all be buggy.   I have even crashed Photoshop which in my opinion is the most stable software on my machine.   Autodessys, with all its challenges, seems to be a bit more on the buggy side from time to time.  What interests me, and has been stated previously, is stability first and new tools second.  We already have so many ways to achieve the same results that focusing on stability seems to me where the future should be.   That and the seamless integration of outside models, but that is a rolling target.   For what it's worth I still find Form.z tech support to be outstanding compared to other software where the forum is often your only option.  

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FZnoob, indeed. Many years ago my old boss bought a brand new Austin Maestro, untypical for him who had previously had an old BMW. Anyway, that car was back to the garage so many times during its first year! I tend to buy cars a year old or more now thinking the teething problems will be mainly sorted. Same philosophy with software, don't buy the #.0 version unless you just have to have the latest bells and whistles, but FZ v9 has been around a while now so I would expect it to be nearly sorted, but reports indicate otherwise.

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12 minutes ago, Andrew West said:

That seems a bit harsh.  Some of us are beta testers by choice and some are by default.  However, I challenge anyone out there to find a perfect piece of software in this industry.  I have used many of them and they can all be buggy.   I have even crashed Photoshop which in my opinion is the most stable software on my machine.   Autodessys, with all its challenges, seems to be a bit more on the buggy side from time to time.  What interests me, and has been stated previously, is stability first and new tools second.  We already have so many ways to achieve the same results that focusing on stability seems to me where the future should be.   That and the seamless integration of outside models, but that is a rolling target.   For what it's worth I still find Form.z tech support to be outstanding compared to other software where the forum is often your only option.  

There are people here saying that despite buying the update, they are having to go back to the previous version because it is so bad they are even losing 2d content. I don't think those who are complaining are being too harsh, unless it is untrue or there is some justification. It would appear to me that it was released before it was ready and that disappoints me because it lets down the hopes and causes wasted time and inconvenience to those who had hoped to use it and often for commercial purposes and it will lose them money as well as satisfaction. Don't get me wrong, I agree with you that FZ support is good, but that does not excuse for releasing a commercial version prematurely imho.

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I am not having issues with 9.0.6.1 currently.  Not to say there are not outstanding issues, but it works for me on Mac OS.

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I'm pretty happy with 9.0.6.1, only few bugs here and there. Perhaps it's because I don't use 2D features at all. Only modelling and rendering. 2D work is done with Draftsight.

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10 hours ago, Jaakko said:

I'm pretty happy with 9.0.6.1, only few bugs here and there. Perhaps it's because I don't use 2D features at all. Only modelling and rendering. 2D work is done with Draftsight.

Thank you Jaakko,

Nice to get the positive comment and thank you. Hopefully it won't be long before I gain enough confidence to upgrade, but it is a big decision because going back if I hit problems would present some compatability issues, and this is for commercial purposes so matters a lot to me.

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On 12/1/2020 at 3:29 PM, Andrew West said:

That seems a bit harsh.  Some of us are beta testers by choice and some are by default.  However, I challenge anyone out there to find a perfect piece of software in this industry.  I have used many of them and they can all be buggy.   I have even crashed Photoshop which in my opinion is the most stable software on my machine.   Autodessys, with all its challenges, seems to be a bit more on the buggy side from time to time.  What interests me, and has been stated previously, is stability first and new tools second.  We already have so many ways to achieve the same results that focusing on stability seems to me where the future should be.   That and the seamless integration of outside models, but that is a rolling target.   For what it's worth I still find Form.z tech support to be outstanding compared to other software where the forum is often your only option.  

I stand by my assertion. This still feels like a beta version. I advised my company not to upgrade to V9 for a while and let the dust settle, but they didn't listen. Now I think they wish they had as many if us are still using V8.6.5

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I know it's more critical where there are many seats. I'm only one here who's primary tool is fz. All 2D work is done with other tools and mainly by my collagues.

Clipboard01.jpg

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The 2 forums I use on a regular basis are this and the Redshift forum.  The big difference (besides what appears to be a much larger user base on Redshift) is the developer response over there is excellent. They chime in on everything. If there's an issue they acknowledge it and if it's not addressable immediately it will be resolved as quickly as they can. They're very open about it.  I think there are only like 6 people working on that plugin so it's amazing to me how responsive they are.  More to the point they seem to understand that not only are we users but by helping us we're helping them make their products better.  There's a lot of threads that don't get responded to or get one initial response and then no additional comments, by Autodessys. 

In regards to the stability issue...  For me V9 has been the best version since V6. I couldn't go back to it but I would love that speed and stability. V9 definitely has issues but it's heading in the right direction. Most of my issues are still interface related. The new Datasmith plugin is the first thing In a long time that gives me hope for the longevity of FormZ. What a great way to triple the userbase in short order. It tells me that Autodessys is finally starting to realize that's FormZ is NOT a great render solution (I know some of you use it and more power to you) but is a FANTASTIC modeler.  My perfect scenario is it would become a modeling addon for something like Cinema4D and then you could legitimately have a one package production solution.  

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I think that Autodessys is in a "catch 22" situation with these releases.  In order to raise revenue to pay for future development they need to release software that people will want to buy.  But to create that software they need to raise revenue through sales.  In the end the company probably took it as far as they could before they released it in Beta format.  Hopefully that translated into enough sales for them to debug the subsequent releases.  So the pattern over the years seems to be like this:  Use the sales proceeds of the current release to create a new version that feels and looks significantly different than the previous release.  Then as quickly as possible debug these releases so the program is more stable.  It just always feels like they are playing catch up with this method.  Perhaps a different approach might yield better results. Like focusing on marketing  or trying to get Form.z taught more broadly in the architecture schools.  Maybe a partnership with another company or an angel investor?  I don't know.   Either way they desperately need to expand their base somehow so that R&D can get some breathing room.   

I also imagine that all the negative comments here about the current release are probably hurting their sales.  Which in turn hurts their ability to address all these issues.  Around and around we go.   

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One of the biggest problems, is that form.Z has a lot more competition now. In it's heyday it was untouchable because it offered arguably the most comprehensive set of tools on the market, for not much money at $1495.

Rivals were thin on the ground and consisted of software either for "hobbyists" (Infini-D, trueSpace, Ray Dream) or for well heeled pros with deep pockets (3DS Max, Houdini, LightWave, Alias PowerAnimator, Softimage 3D).

From the latter group, Alias PowerAnimator at $30,000 came closest to form.Z when it came to modelling power. The buying decision was obviously a no brainer.

Cinema 4D, Maya, and Rhino were not born untill around 1999, and they signalled the decline of the dominance of form.Z, in terms of power to value ratio.

In addition, "The Joint Study Program" ensured a steady stream of future new users, by seriously involving students with the software early on. Rave reviews flooded in from various publications around the world. These were the golden years, and lasted for about fifteen years, 1991-2006, but then the decline began.

I believe that the only way back will be to try to claw back the lost respect, but the question is how? Indeed, can it be done..... or is it too late? 

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The sad thing in my opinion is that FZ has never been good at marketing. I discovered FormZ far too late having come accross a mention of Bonzai 3d (the old name for Junior FormZ) on a Sketchup 8 Forum when Google ran Sketchup. Having used Turbocad pro for many many years, constantly looking for alternatives, eventually moving to Sketchup 8, struggled with that for a year, and when I eventually became aware of the existence of FormZ quickly realised how much more powerful and fast FZ was than Sketchup to model with (apart from some bugs which would crash my system from time to time) and came on board. But I should have become aware of FZ  several years earlier. Lack of marketing was the reason I didn't because I had be reading and searching and trying out other software. The way ahead is to minimise any risk of the program crashing, so bugs don't involve loss of any operations, then market effectively. I believe there is still time to make this work, although admittedly a lot of water has already passed under the bridge.

Edited by Alan Cooper
spelling, repetition

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It's nice that formZ is NOT on the bottom of this list when searching "the best 3d modeling programs" on G2. https://www.g2.com/categories/3d-modeling

It's also nice that there are a number of pretty current reviews of the software.  Perhaps word of mouth is working a little bit.  But there's still a severe lack of exposure of the software.  ADS could use a social media manager of sorts and maybe commission it's end users to create "how-to" videos for their YouTube page.  

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3 hours ago, snow said:

It's nice that formZ is NOT on the bottom of this list when searching "the best 3d modeling programs" on G2. https://www.g2.com/categories/3d-modeling

It's also nice that there are a number of pretty current reviews of the software.  Perhaps word of mouth is working a little bit.  But there's still a severe lack of exposure of the software.  ADS could use a social media manager of sorts and maybe commission it's end users to create "how-to" videos for their YouTube page.  

Those are excellent suggestions.  It does seem that social media is everything these days.  I too am struggling to figure out how to use it for my business.  I wonder how ADS could use it to their advantage.  As for YouTube I only wish that there were some dedicated individuals here that could make that happen.  I don't know if other platforms pay people to make those videos or if there is a different incentive but Form.z is certainly lacking when it comes to this.  Since so many people rely on these videos to learn it would make more sense to put some serious effort here. For what its worth I have a neighbor who is a surgeon.  He told me he learns new techniques and tricks by YouTube.  Seriously.  

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Hi there, just wanted to add that after installing the latest v9 a lot of the issues i had were fixed. still a bit of a lag but much better than before. so Thanks for that update.

 

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Is there anyone who can manage a file that is 86 Mb large working with the 9.0.6.1 version? 

My file has a reference file, but this one is unloaded. The file is still 86 Mb but every single click produces the spinning ball and it takes minutes and minutes before selecting the next command. If people are enthusiastic about this 9.0.6.1 version, I do not have that experience at all!

I try to figure out the reason, but cannot find one. Maybe a memory leak or video card issue??? My MacPro 2013 8-core model with 64 Gb internal memory and 2 video cards AMD Firepro D500. 

Hopefully someone got this spinning ball issue as well and having a solution for the problem, because I am not able to deliver my product to my clients.

 

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I have no reference file but 135MB FZ file works fine here.

Radeon RX570 , Catalina

Have you tried turning off the "snap to key point" snaps - I found this helps performance

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35 minutes ago, Hugo said:

Is there anyone who can manage a file that is 86 Mb large working with the 9.0.6.1 version? 

My file has a reference file, but this one is unloaded. The file is still 86 Mb but every single click produces the spinning ball and it takes minutes and minutes before selecting the next command. If people are enthusiastic about this 9.0.6.1 version, I do not have that experience at all!

I try to figure out the reason, but cannot find one. Maybe a memory leak or video card issue??? My MacPro 2013 8-core model with 64 Gb internal memory and 2 video cards AMD Firepro D500. 

Hopefully someone got this spinning ball issue as well and having a solution for the problem, because I am not able to deliver my product to my clients.

 

Hugo,

Would you be able to send the trouble file to support@formz.com? An 86MB file seems like a very reasonable file size and we would like to investigate the source of the hanging. Please include any Reference Files and image maps involved.

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2 minutes ago, Hugo said:

The file reduced to 9,... mb after deleting the reference file. But, the problem is still there.

If the problem persists without the Reference File then you don't need to include it.

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Hi Hugo,

After seeing your post, I decided to make a video to share in the forum.

I also work on Mac, and at the moment, I'm using a pretty old computer from mid-2012. It's a MacBook Pro 15", the first Retina model, with only 8 GB RAM and an NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M graphics card with 1 GB VRAM.

Despite their limited capabilities, in general, I have no problems working on projects of single-family housing or similar sizes.

To do this test, I used a file that weighs 23 MB, copying all the objects four times. The file has a final weight of 85.9 MB.

In general, formZ behaves quite smoothly with this file. There's a bit of delay when I reveal all the objects in one pass and a bit more when I use the scenes, especially with the one that makes visible all.

The link to see the video in Dropbox:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/y6ertvbm9v9nehp/CJS-modelo 15 proyecto x4.mp4?dl=0

I also share some screenshots with some extra information about the file.

Best,

Marcelo

macOS 10.15.7 / formZ 9.0.6.1

Edited by ZTEK

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On 12/15/2020 at 3:08 PM, Tech said:

Hugo,

Would you be able to send the trouble file to support@formz.com? An 86MB file seems like a very reasonable file size and we would like to investigate the source of the hanging. Please include any Reference Files and image maps involved.

The cause of the hanging in Hugo's file was determined to be an excess of empty animation tracks. The development team is devising a better way to handle these in the future.

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1 hour ago, Tech said:

The cause of the hanging in Hugo's file was determined to be an excess of empty animation tracks. The development team is devising a better way to handle these in the future.

I'm curious if an implementation of a "purge" tool could help here.  Instead of individually purging layers, materials, ghosted objects, animation tracks, empty groups (I've noticed excess groups that contain one object and aren't actually grouping anything, can slow things down a bit.  I get this a lot importing SKP files or after I happen to delete multiple objects in a group and don't realize I have one object left in said group, but I digress), etc., the user could call the PURGE tool, and check/uncheck various things to purge in the tool options. 

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