The History of DAZ Studio

 I know a little but I'm curious, what's the history of Daz 3D?  

Long ago, in a time before Daz Studio, there were applications called Poser and Infini-D, and they were good.  

(for those knowledgeable, please continue this story) ...

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  • JonnyRayJonnyRay Posts: 849
    edited June 27

    For a rundown of the history of DAZ figures, I defer to Scott's DAZ 3D Human Figures - A History thread. :) Since this is the DAZ Studio forums, a few key milestones...

    DAZ 3D started as a content creator for Poser. It was spun off from Zygote Media Group in 2000 and became it's own company.

    The first version of DAZ Studio was released in 2005. There's always been a free version of the software and (occasionally) a low-cost "Professional" version as well.

    • Shortly after DAZ Studio, they released Victoria 4, certainly a milestone content product which set them up for dominance of the human figure market. I'm sure I'm not the only one who never used Poser, having started with DS and Vicky 4 as my first major content purchase.

    DAZ Studio continued through several minor releases and updates, mostly designed at stabilization with a few new features added along the way, until 2011 when they released a major overhaul of the software with version 4.0. This introduced a lot of features like the Shader Mixer and Builders and several improvements in animation control and such. The Professional version included several tools aimed at content creators. This also marked the first generation of Genesis figures.

    DS 4 largely brought DAZ Studio up to par with the Poser product at the time from a technical funcationilty standpoint. One could argue about which one was more easily usable for new artists and the rendering enginges were slightly different, but from my perspective this was the release where content creators stopped focusing soley on Poser, and adding DS support as an after thought, and started to pay attention to optimizing their surface settings, etc. for DAZ Studio as well.

    Since 2011, DS has continued with minor updates, pulled the "Pro" features into the core product, and has slowly gained more "market share" among 3D hobbiests as the Poser product has had it's own struggles. It is hard to compete against a price point of $0 after all.

    Post edited by JonnyRay on
  • ZilvergrafixZilvergrafix Posts: 687

    in previous versions of this website had Bio page with all the key staff inside DS, that was cool, even shared their facebook sites too.

    in some history too, they created ArtZone website like Deviantart but was removed, the reasons were many.

  • ChoholeChohole Posts: 29,044
    edited June 28

    Daz 3D actually started working on Daz Studio back in the days when Poser 4 and the original Poser propack were current.

    before DS arrived there was a company called Metacreations. MetaCreations was founded in 1997 by the mergers of MetaTools, Fractal Design Corporation, Ray Dream, Specular, and Real Time Geometry Lab (RTG)

      Metacreations (who at that time owned Poser as well as Bryce and other programs), decided to sell all their 3d programs to concentrate on something else. 

    • Ray Dream Studio and Specular Infini-D were succeeded by Carrara, which was sold to Eovia and subsequently acquired by DAZ 3D.
    • MetaTools' Bryce was sold to Corel and subsequently acquired by DAZ 3D.
    • Fractal Design's Poser was sold to Curious Labs, which was itself acquired by e-Frontier and finally Smith Micro Software.

    A Group called Curious Labs formed and bought Poser.  They decided to upgrade it to Poser 5, but did it in such a way as to ring alarm bells, so Daz decided to try making a possible replacement program in case Poser did keel over completely, which did seem possible at the time.  .

    I do have a link to an article called "The Poser 5 Mess"  if you want to know more about the Poser side of this.   

    Post edited by Chohole on
  • MaxHancockMaxHancock Posts: 158
    edited June 28

    This is all really interesting! Is it true that some of the programmers that made Hexagon went on to work with Zbrush? 

    Post edited by MaxHancock on
  • melaniemelanie Posts: 302

    Talking about the history of DAZ 3D, here's a piece of trivia: the very first Michael character, Millennium Man, was actually 3D scanned from the face of Dan Farr, the man who started the DAZ 3D company. I remember reading a forum post years ago by someone who attended some 3D convenion where Dan Farr was running a booth for DAZ, and he said it was uncanny talking with him because he felt as if he were talking to a real live Michael.

  • ChoholeChohole Posts: 29,044
    edited July 3

    And another funny thing from the "good old days" of Daz. At one time they had a real live Victoria doing a similar Job to what Britney does now,  Every so often you would get a message about a live chat, and it would be headed "Victoria wants to talk to you"  or something similar.

    Post edited by Chohole on
  • Dave63Dave63 Posts: 17
    edited July 4

                                                                          Way back (sorry I don't have a chronology) when the internet ran through land lines, and there were computers called micro, midi and mainframe ( the best of which had about as much throughput as your smartphone does now-- and micros far less) Daz started marketing Daz studio aggressively. In their forums I found links to their old company= zygote- which made models not just for Poser, but utile in all 3D applications which used the .obj format (they ported them to a Lightwave format too, or maybe that's what they modeled in). The range and quality of those anatomical models was stunning for the time (Mid/late 1990s) . They had meshes for medical illustration, animatronics and hobby well before everybody and his uncle had access to the processing power or applications to model or render them (Nvidia had just begun supporting SGI's Midi based openGl for the micro PC at that time. and their bmrt renderman intrerface was in legal limbo). 

     

                                                                       Sometimes when I see some of the comments on what is and is not professional on these forums I laugh until I need to pee.

     

     

    Post edited by Dave63 on
  • Kevin SandersonKevin Sanderson Posts: 1,281

    Here's a webcapture someone posted of the Zygote page when they first offered Victoria.

    https://goo.gl/images/niqCTj

  • wolf359wolf359 Posts: 1,968
    edited July 5

    I was quite active in the poser community in the midst of the aforementioned "Poser 5 mess"

    A popular  former Daz PA named Anton Kisell
    Broke the news ,on the old poser forums,the Daz was about to release its own figure posing and rendering program.


    During the early releases of DS there were early warning signs of the impending loss of poser native figure compatibility when the scaling options of the Kids4 and Freak 4 models did not work in the latest version of poser.


    Most poser users,at the time, refused to believe that DAZ would ever release a Vicky that was not %100 poser compatible.

    Gofigure started a thread ,on the Old Daz forum, asking for the community to help them build a better animation system for Daz studio.
    This  led to the eventual release of the nonlinear aniblock system "AniMate"
    I dont recall what year that was, however that was when I personally started to take Daz Studio 2.xx Seriously as an alternative to Poser.

    Post edited by wolf359 on
  • Here's a webcapture someone posted of the Zygote page when they first offered Victoria.

    https://goo.gl/images/niqCTj

    I remember that screenshot... The original Victoria  was the first 3D model I ever bought. 

  • Ron KnightsRon Knights Posts: 842

    DAZ3D offered DAZ Studio Pro for free, right after I paid for it! laugh

  • Way back when, Zygote did model in Lightwave, and you could buy what later became Poser Female for $500. It worked in 3D Studio (before it was "3D Studio Max"), Lightwave, and whatever other 3D programs of the day (with the notable exception of TrueSpace).

    Macromedia announced a new internet technology and associated browser plug-in called "Flash", and the race was on. MetaCreations sold off Bryce, Poser, Painter3D, Carrara (Infini-D, Ray Dream Studio, and something else combined though feature-stripped as compared to those products), and everything else to focus on their own "Flash"-type technology (I forget the name but we called it Metapee on the Poser Forum, which was the largest (if not the only) forum dedicated to Poser, Bryce, and all the other MetaCreations products). 

    As I recall, Zygote's future had become one with Poser, and when MC decided to chase white rabbits across the internet, the Poser dev team split down the middle, as did Zygote's modeling squad. One half of each formed DAZ (Zygote had already established a Digital Art Zone) and the other half of each formed a company that bought Poser, but obviously fell on hard times and sold out to a larger body. Through it all, I'm amazed Poser was able to keep corporate meddling to a minimum, especially when they got to Corel (what they did to Paint Shop Pro), though Smith-Micro knows as much about Poser as a mouse does about nuclear physics, but they stay largely out of the design end of things, and let the people who helped make it in the first place keep making it do what it do.

    However, it should be noted that Daz Studio still lags behind Poser in at least 2 critical points: Poser has a built-in Hair Room, where you can generate dynamic hair (which is covered in DS by the Garibaldi Hair System) and Poser's Morphing Tool allows you to sculpt morphs inside the program, without all this export/import with a 3rd party app. Additionally, Poser allows you to break apart a mesh by material separations, generating a separate prop mesh for each one. This made it easier to convert static objects to functional figures. And of course Poser always had the Cloth Room with dynamics, and a built-in animation kit including keyframing and graph editing. Then again, Poser wasn't free.

  • ChoholeChohole Posts: 29,044

    DrNewcenstein   said

    Through it all, I'm amazed Poser was able to keep corporate meddling to a minimum, especially when they got to Corel

    Corel never had Poser.  It went Fractal Design   Metacreations   Curious Labs (egi.sys AG)     E-Frontier  and then ended up with Smith Micro

  • Macromedia announced a new internet technology and associated browser plug-in called "Flash", and the race was on. MetaCreations sold off Bryce, Poser, Painter3D, Carrara (Infini-D, Ray Dream Studio, and something else combined though feature-stripped as compared to those products), and everything else to focus on their own "Flash"-type technology (I forget the name but we called it Metapee on the Poser Forum, which was the largest (if not the only) forum dedicated to Poser, Bryce, and all the other MetaCreations products). 

    MetaStream was the web tool that was thought to be the future. I think the other application you are thinking of was Canoma.

    As I recall, Zygote's future had become one with Poser, and when MC decided to chase white rabbits across the internet, the Poser dev team split down the middle, as did Zygote's modeling squad. One half of each formed DAZ (Zygote had already established a Digital Art Zone) and the other half of each formed a company that bought Poser, but obviously fell on hard times and sold out to a larger body. Through it all, I'm amazed Poser was able to keep corporate meddling to a minimum, especially when they got to Corel (what they did to Paint Shop Pro), though Smith-Micro knows as much about Poser as a mouse does about nuclear physics, but they stay largely out of the design end of things, and let the people who helped make it in the first place keep making it do what it do.

    Zygote was not dedicatd to Poser, it always (that Irecall) created content for a range of applications - as mentioned in your first paragraph. The Poser Content division of Zygote was split off to form Daz 3D, which had nothing to do with the ex-Poser team from Metacreations. Poser went to Curious Labs, which was bought by eFrontier and then moved on to Smith Micro. Corel owned Bryce (which it later sold to Daz) and Painter and KPT (which it retains) - Eovia bought the Metacreations modelling tools, except Canoma I think (which went to Adobe). It's worth noting that Smith Micro did eventurally dismiss the old Poser development team.

    However, it should be noted that Daz Studio still lags behind Poser in at least 2 critical points: Poser has a built-in Hair Room, where you can generate dynamic hair (which is covered in DS by the Garibaldi Hair System) and Poser's Morphing Tool allows you to sculpt morphs inside the program, without all this export/import with a 3rd party app.

    And DS has an SDK that allows third-parties to develop integrated plug-ins, such as Garibaldi/Look at My Hair for hair and Fluidos for fluids. Also, bear in mind that the Poser team did not develop all of the curent Poser tools internally.

    Additionally, Poser allows you to break apart a mesh by material separations, generating a separate prop mesh for each one. This made it easier to convert static objects to functional figures.

    As can DS - Geometry Editor tool.

    And of course Poser always had the Cloth Room with dynamics

    Always being Poser 5+ for the Cloth Room.

  • Ron KnightsRon Knights Posts: 842

    At one time, DAZ offered DAZ Studio free and charged a fee for DAZ Studio Advanced. I remember because I made a video saying I had decided to buy DAZ Studio Advanced. Not long after that, DAZ offered DAZ Studio for free!

  • takezo_3001takezo_3001 Posts: 574

    At one time, DAZ offered DAZ Studio free and charged a fee for DAZ Studio Advanced. I remember because I made a video saying I had decided to buy DAZ Studio Advanced. Not long after that, DAZ offered DAZ Studio for free!

    To be fair, Daz did offer refunds for either store credit or money for the early adopters, I chose not to take them up on their offer as I really love DAZ Studio that much, so I was willing to support their efforts, I bought the D|S3 Advanced/D|S4 Pro as well!

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