3Ds Max Vs Maya: Which One Is Better In 3D Modeling?

3D Modeling

The 3D graphic design is a very interesting world. While it is easier to choose to become a 3D graphics designer, finding the right program to work with is not easy. The most commonly used programs are 3Ds Max and Maya. But just which of these programs is the best? What are the differences between 3Ds Max and Maya? What are the strengths and weaknesses of each of these two programs? Whether you choose one or the other will depend on the following factors:

For what use are you acquiring the program?

Just what do you want to use the program for? Do you aim to create character animation performances or create 3D model characters? If you are a game designer, you need a program that either creates game animations or game models. Even if you are using the program as part of a VFX pipeline for film or visualizations of architecture, make sure you know exactly what you are looking for. Who knows? You might just find a very easy way of choosing between 3Ds Max and Maya. The following are some of the applications to which you can put these programs:


Between the two, it is 3Ds Max that comes with a very stout modeling toolset. Add to that the huge library of modifiers and you can be sure of a very easy modeling process. For those who are new to the 3D world, mastering 3Ds Max is very easy. After all, it works more easily and smoothly compared to Maya. With 3Ds Max, it is easy to carry out architectural visualizations such as building exteriors and interiors. In fact, designers and architects love 3Ds Max very much. With Maya, accomplishing complex models is not that easy.

Animal Skeletons


Expect to find an inbuilt rendering engine mental ray in each of these software. What that means is that 3Ds Max and Maya share the same capabilities when it comes to rendering. The only difference between the two is the workflow. However, expect to get similar results no matter which program you choose.


Of the two programs, Maya seems to be the rigging king. But that doesn’t mean it will give you complex character rigs that easily. In fact, you have to, first, program it in MEL. Of course, you can still rig in 3Ds Max. But you wouldn’t be able to create complex characters like those you can achieve with Maya.


Maya stands out because of the huge library of animation tools that make it the best when it comes to this function. You only need to have a working knowledge of its scripting languages – Python and MEL – to customize this program. One of the biggest users of Maya is Blue Sky Studios. All their rigging and animation tasks are done using this program. But that doesn’t mean that 3DsMax is bad when it comes to animations. In fact, it is possible to get the same animations in 3DsMax as those in Maya. The reasons why Maya stands out is the number of tools available and ease of use.

What’s That Makes Maya Stand Out?

Maya is written using the MEL proprietary scripting language, which is easy to customize. You are likely to find this program in use in the film industry where studios like it when they can create their own set of tools. It is the number one choice for people looking to create 3D animations. After all, it has the best animation and rigging tools as well as a friendly workflow. If you are a new game developer, consider subscribing to Maya LT. Although you will not be able to get all the features of the full version Maya, you will have access to texturing, animation, modeling, and game designer functions.

Truck Engine 3D Model

In What Way Does 3Ds Max Shine?

It has already been established how powerful 3Ds Max is powerful when it comes to modeling. This program gives you a fast workflow that’s coupled with robust modifiers for creating complex 3D models. You should be able to find all the poly modeling tools in one part of the user interface. With this program, you will get the best architectural visualization capabilities. In fact, Maya cannot claim to come close. There is no program on the market that is easier to grasp for graphics design beginners than 3Ds Max. You might be new in the industry, but that doesn’t mean you should be intimidated.

So which one should you pick?

Don’t pick either 3Ds Max or Maya before you know what you are going to use it for. Consider the strengths and weaknesses of each of these programs and go for the one that best serves your needs. While 3Ds Max runs only on Windows OS, Maya can be hosted on OSX, Linux, and Windows. Take your pick.