PADT 0.051 – Blender Add-Ons List
A Somewhat Thorough List of Blender Add-Ons – A Poor-Man's Lumion
Blender & ArchViz
One thing I really enjoy about the Blender Community is the astounding number of Extensions or Add-ons which you can get. Sometimes it feels like a “hodgepodge,” but that’s the point. You can start with the base program’s basics and then add what you need. This helps with learning a new application and not feeling overwhelmed because once you get one area down, you can then add something else. So many of the Big Name BIM systems are overwhelming for the first time you open the application. (I’ve counted, and some of them have as many as 400 commands found on the base application.)
Is Blender Really for ArchViz?
Blender was first conceived as an Open Source alternative to 3D Studio Max. In the beginning, it used a very non-standard interface and was not very friendly to dimensionally accurate modeling. This has changed in recent years, and the Blender Foundation has made great strides to make the interface much more standard. Many developers have come along to make the program in line with what’s needed for ArchViz. But it doesn’t do everything, but it’s a tool that is evolving very rapidly and is worth a look to possibly be part of your standard workflow.
What I wanted to do in the issue is list the Add-Ons, which I feel would be most needed to make Blender more like a Poor Man’s Lumion. But then again, you would only add the Add-Ons for the areas of ArchViz you need. If you don’t need vegetation because you’re down more Mass Model, don’t install that type of Extension. If you don’t need vehicles, because you do primarily interior work, don’t bother with them.
This is by no means a complete list, and new offerings are coming out all the time. In the comments, let me know anything that I’ve missed that needs to be included.
As I said this is not nearly a complete list. For another list go to:
16 Best Blender Add-ons for ArchViz
Dimensionally Accurate Modeling
Importing SketchUp Models
Free Texture Sites
Component Placement Options
What this means is you don’t have to be stuck with the Big Names and you can explore several other possibilities. Naturally, this takes more work than just buying a turn-key solution, but what happens when an application won’t do what you need it to? Do you wait around and hope the application developers give you the features you really want? Or do you chart a different path that gives you many more choices?
Up to you!
What do you think? Comment below…
From Issue 0.050:
Ralph Grabowski - upFront.eZine - Inside the CAD Business
We in the CAD biz definitely benefited from the advances in computer hardware and software made by gaming. Microsoft decided it wanted Windows to be a gaming platform, and so provided the DirectX interface to graphics hardware. As a result, CAD runs well on integrated graphics in CPU chips.
Apple to this day is shy about allowing game and CAD software developers access the graphics hardware directly, something CAD developers tell me in private so as to not anger Apple.
That just seems odd. Even people just doing video editing (every YouTuber) benefits from gaming technology and so do Data Scientists.
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Dave Edwards has been in the CAD/BIM industry as a manager, developer, consultant, speaker, and author for almost 40 years. He has had 80 magazine articles published, written 3 international newsletters, reviewed over 300 CAD/BIM applications, and 3D modeled 2 Billion dollars worth of architectural projects. He is available for professional alpha/beta testing, application feature consulting, technical documentation support, seminar presentations, and voice overs.
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