At SIGGRAPH in Los Angeles today, Maxon announced details about their new Cinema 4D Release 21 as well as new, less expensive subscription pricing model and a vastly simplified product line. Say goodbye to Body Paint as well as the Prime, Broadcast, Visualize, and Studio versions; there is now simply one version of Cinema 4D with the full feature set of what was previously called Studio. It’s a bold move that that is good for customers.

Maxon calls it their “3D for the Whole World” initiative, which aims to have the full capabilities of the Studio version accessible to more artists. It comes with  simplified purchasing, installation, and licensing of the product.

The new single version called Cinema 4D Release 21 will be $59.99/month or €49.99/month with an annual commitment. A monthly rental (with no long term commitment) will also be available for $94.99/month or €84.99/month

A perpetual license will still be available for $3,495 or €2,900 with no more MSA (Maxon Service Agreement) and owners will have the ability to purchase upgrades. The MSA for C4D Studio was previously $725/yr or an upgrade cost of $995.


Maxon will also be offering a bundle of Cinema 4D and Redshift for $81.99/month or €69.99/month with an annual commitment. A monthly rental bundle (with no long term commitment) will also be available for $116.99/month or €104.99/month.

All in all, this pricing change is a big win for users, especially those that upgrade every year. For new users of Cinema 4D, the entry costs are significantly lower (you could use the term “ridiculously lower” for the Studio version) than what they have been in the past. At this point in time, Maxon is still providing the ability to purchase a perpetual license for those that are concerned that they might lose access to the software some day. This is a sensible move and something likely learned from the missteps of Adobe’s initial Creative Cloud rollout.

Customers who recently purchased the Studio version of R20 may be a bit upset as to the timing of their purchase. Users who purchased it with an MSA will receive the upgrade to R21. However, they will have spent over $4,300 USD compared to the subscription model where the cost would be under $1,500 for two years of current software versions. Changes in business models and prices for software is always possible and part of doing business and one always has a chance for a mis-timed purchase.

Paul Babb, Head of Worldwide Marketing for Maxon, understands this could be a sore point for these recent new customers and says Maxon “will certainly deal with those recent customers on an individual basis” in order to make things right. Babb has always had a big focus on customer service and says that he “hates leaving a reasonable customer unhappy.”

As far as facilities, Maxon has taken into account their needs and will still be offering floating server-based licenses and multi-seat discounts. This transition will likely be much easier than the one when Adobe switched business models without really having decent multi-seat support for post and animation facilities.

Maxon is launching a singular global online shop; previously there were US, UK, and German online shops where customers would have to buy their product. Their site is where licenses will be managed, allowing users to things such as free up licenses for use on another computer.

Result of new Caps and Bevels tool

In addition to the new pricing, the software has the following new features and more:

  • Caps and Bevels: A new tool for extruding and beveling, which is not just useable for text but is available on all spline objects
  • Field Force Dynamic Object: New tool to control dynamic forces in MoGraph modeling and animation effects using fields.
  • Mixamo Control Rig: Provides the ability to adjust Mixamo animations that have imported into Cinema 4D; rigs are automatically set up upon import
  • Intel® Open Image Denoise: A denoising filter solution to improve visual quality and reduce rendering times via deep learning techniques. It works with Cinema 4D’s standard renderer as well as other renderers such as Redshift and ProRender
  • Material Nodes: New nodes including Custom AOVs (Multi-Pass), Line node, Spline Mapper node, and more. Node Space that defines which material nodes are available to the chosen renderer. New API for developers to integrate renderers with the new material node system.
  • Interface Speed Enhancements: Project timelines with lots of keyframes are much faster.
  • Workflow Improvements: HiDPI Viewport on Windows, Retina Viewport on macOS, dark mode on OS X, and more
Intel Open Image Denoise applied
Image with noise

Redshift 3 is in preview release with RTX support and they have also added overall general optimizations as well to increase performance. At SIGGRAPH, they are also showing a sneak peek of Redshift RT, a new GPU-accelerated renderer promising millisecond-per-frame rendering speeds. Maxon CEO Dave McGavran announced that Redshift will be supported by Google Zync and also that the OS X Metal version of Redshift will be available by the end of the year.

Unreal Engine announced support for Cinema 4D last week and McGavran also announced support for Unity as well, via a plugin that will be available in the fall.

Feature image at top of article is ©YanGe_VFX



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