The easiest 3D modeling software: 2020 update
Posted By Kat Plewa on May 22, 2019 |
Are you starting your adventure with 3D modeling software or maybe you tried and feel like you haven’t found the perfect choice for your needs yet? Don’t get discouraged! There are actually plenty of choices and we prepared for you the ultimate list of the easiest 3D modeling software. Either you’re just a hobbyist or you have professional plans for your 3D modeling future, our list will surely help you to take a closer look at the easiest 3D modeling software!
Which software should you choose?
Overall, we will provide you with the easiest 3D modeling software divided into 3 categories. Firstly we will introduce to you software for absolute beginners. They can be used for simple models or mechanical parts and are great to begin learning 3D modeling.
Then we will talk about software to edit 3D models. It can happen that you just need to adjust a 3D model you got off the internet and there is no need for you to get complicated 3D programs and start learning 3D modeling. We will show you that there are easier solutions.
Lastly, you will find 3D modeling software which is still easy to use, but will also provide you with more advanced options. They are great to start learning 3D modeling and then continue using the same programs for more complex tasks.
To choose the best software for your needs, you need to understand what skills do you require. There are also various types of software, 3D modeling, and CAD. What is the difference? Find out here.
Top 6 easy software for beginners
Tinkercad is a product of Autodesk, leader of the most popular 3D modeling and CAD software. It’s free software available online. It’s very intuitive and shows you the basics of 3D by using primitive shapes. It is fast and easy, you will build your first 3D model in no time.
Vectary has a nice set of tools as it was inspired by graphics, product, and video games design, but also 3D printing. Therefore, this online software is great for all sorts of 3D modeling projects. Vectary works by dragging and dropping the elements, which means you don’t have to create them from scratch. This software also allows for creating renders. A free version is available after signing up on the website.
Maybe you prefer to use a tablet over a computer; which is more mobile and easier to take anywhere with you. This need has been answered by a New York-based startup and their mobile app Morphi.
It is easy to learn and it’s popular in American schools to teach kids 3D modeling. You can make a simple project or choose one from decorative and functional models available in the library. The application is free, however additional charges apply for specific models and tools. For schools, the software costs $9.99.
You probably have heard or even played Minecraft. This iconic game is based on blocks. This was an inspiration for 3D Slash, where you delete blocks to achieve the shape of your model. One option is to trace an image, or you can create a basic shape and then sculpt it by deleting and adding blocks. The accuracy in this software is 0.1 mm which is enough for simple, but functional 3D models. This software fast and easy to learn additionally can be quite fun when deleting the blocks.
This is one of the latest arrivals in the 3D software family. It was only released this year, but it’s already very popular in American schools. Why? Because it’s very user-friendly and one of the easiest 3D modeling software for beginners out there.
Several options allow for sculpting, modeling and slicing the objects. SelfCAD is based on SaaS learning, therefore an experienced user should not have problems getting started. There is a free trial offered, and if you decide to buy it, it’s only $9.99/ month.
If you want to take your 3D modeling skills to another level later
SketchUp is very well known, especially in the architecture, design and filmmaking industry. SketchUp Free is a more simple version of SketchUp. It is a web-based software with easy tools. Getting started is simple as the user face of SketchUp Free is user-friendly and clear.
When you polish up your basic 3D modeling skills, you can then invest in the pro version of SketchUp, which is very powerful, capable of designing huge and complex models. You can discover it with our tutorial.
For non-commercial and educational use, OnShape is available for free. This software is quite special, aimed especially to produce technical and spare parts. Since it’s a CAD software, you will learn how to sketch basic geometrical shapes and then turn them into 3D models by options such as extrusion. This is definitely more technical CAD software.
Fusion 360 is one of our favorite CAD software. Developed by Autodesk, it is widely used by industrial designers. While it is powerful and capable of very complex 3D models, it is also a great option if you know a little bit of the basics. You can get to know the primary tools with our tutorials, where we explain step by step how to design a 3D printed turbine, functional threads, and a pipe fitting.
FreeCAD is a great alternative to sometimes pricey software. It is a professional CAD software with a great set of tools to design mechanical parts. FreeCAD is not only free but also open source with a large community that contributes to improving the program. You can discover it a bit more with our tutorial to create interlocking parts, where we made 3D models using FreeCAD.
This software definitely counts as one of the easiest 3D modeling software. Without any previous experience, we created a Sculptris tutorial for you, and the experience was surprisingly simple and straight-forward.
Digital sculpting allows for application of different brushes, editing mesh and texturing your models. This is certainly much less technical or mechanical software, we would advise you to use it for more abstract models such as figurines.
This 3D modeling software can be used for both 2D drawings and 3D models. A lot of its options overlap, which was designed on purpose. This means that turning a 2D image into a 3D design is quite simple. ZBrush is also great because it doesn’t require a powerful graphics card, which is an important aspect you should consider when deciding which of the easiest 3D modeling software is the best for you.
Cinema 4D aims to be fast and easy at the same time. It is widely used by professionals, but simple enough to learn for beginners. Customizable User Interfaces make it more personalized and you can have all the tools you need in one place. A lot of experienced users claim this software deals with various tasks much faster and 3D models are easier to edit than in some other 3D modeling software.
Thanks to a wide range of powerful 3D tools Modo is great for modeling, rendering, and 3D animation. The editing options are intuitive and simple making Modo one of the easiest 3D modeling software. You can start learning it with our free tutorial.
Last, but not least in this category of the easiest 3D software, Blender. Blender is very popular across different industries. It is free and open source. Blender is a great start if you want to stay in the 3D modeling world. From 3D models for 3D printing to rendering 3D animation, Blender has a top quality set of tools for different needs. Check out our tutorial and start 3D modeling right now!
Editing 3D models
This open source and free software allows for editing models and also creating them. If you’re totally green when it comes to 3d printing, MatterControl will be a great start to get familiar with basic commands and terms.
Another product from Autodesk, you can very easily repair, optimize and edit your 3D models. It is so simple you can learn most of the tools by just playing around. However, if you need guidance, you can learn it with our tutorial. Meshmixer is free and will quickly help you to adjust 3D models.
A fast and simple way to fix some issues in your 3D model is also Sculpteo website. You don’t need to download or learn any software. All you have to do is upload STL files and the website will mark for you the problems and propose several solutions.
Have you decided yet?
Deciding which program is the easiest 3D modeling software might be hard, but we hope this blog post gave you a lot of options to choose from. Are you going to try more basic programs such as Thinkercad or will you invest in your 3D modeling future with Blender? Share with us your experience in the comments!
3D printing your 3D models is even easier than learning how to 3D model! With online 3D printing services like Sculpteo, you just need to upload your file. You will get an instant quote and fast delivery.