The best DAZ Studio goodies for free or cheap!

So you’ve downloaded DAZ Studio to give the wonderful world of 3D rendering a spin, and now what you need is content – and lots of it! You’re tired of seeing Victoria 4 prancing on the beach, and want more figures, scenes, lights, clothes and props to fill out your Runtime folder.

But you’re still not sure about it all. The last thing you want to do is throw your hard earned pennies into something you might use once or twice and decide it’s not for you, yet at the same time you want top quality models that really let you put DAZ Studio through it’s paces and show what this brilliant, awesome program is capable of.

Trust me, I understand. I’ve been there.

Starting with this post, I’m going to highlight the best of all the free (and ridiculously cheap) content out there so you can make the most of DAZ Studio with as little (or no!) money spent at all. We’re going to begin with what’s available directly from the great guys at DAZ3D themselves. In later posts we’ll be cherry-picking from sites across the whole of the internet. Some of this is old ground I’ve already covered in past tutorials, but time (and product availability) marches on, so it’s worth taking a fresh look at what’s out there in the wonderful world of 3D Rendering for free or dirt cheap.

The first thing to so is register your copy of DAZ Studio, right here. This drops a load of Free Additional Content for DAZ Studio into your Available Downloads as a thank you for registering, and also adds a special STUDIOSTART coupon to your account too. We’ll be coming to that shortly.

Download and install the Additional Content, and you’ll find a couple of Fairy scenes setup in Scenes->Faerie Forest and reduced resolution version of Victoria 3 in People->Victoria along with a Fairy outfit (People->Victoria->Clothing), hair and poses. As a starting setup, it’s a darned sight better than Vicky and her beachball! :D

fae v3

But there’s more. DAZ3D offer a whole shedload of free bundles and content on their site. Probably the single most useful one is the 3D Bridge Starter Pack which includes Aiko 3 complete with hair and sci-fi outfit, a dragon, cat, dog, elephant, toon emotiguy and rather cool Stinger Aircar. I’ve raved about this particular free bundle before – it’s a terrific introduction to a wide range of 3D styles and models.

3dbridge

To complement this bundle, I recommend snarfing two more. The free Sarafi Starter bundle updates your existing Cyclorama backdrop with an excellent Serengeti background set and models of an African Elephant, Pronghorn Antelope, Panther, Rhino and Zebra too.

safaristarter

The Anime Uniforms bundle includes the full (rather than Limited Edition) Aiko 3 complete with full morphs and texture maps as well as manga-style Sailor and Captain’s uniforms. XinXin is also included for free. This is an excellent manga character and hair set for Aiko 3, and with this bundle and the goodies from the 3D Bridge Starter Set you’re all set for your manga-inspired renderings.

madeinjapan

That’s a LOT of content just to get you started! Most of it is older (but no less high-quality and useful) stuff from DAZ3d’s back catalogue. Moving more up to date, the Michael 4 and Victoria 4.2 base figures are an essential download. They are the latest generation models from which all new DAZ3D characters and figures are based. For Victoria 4.2 grab the wonderful Shadow Dancer set too. Alongside your existing Casual Clothing and Basicwear Sports Top and Bra that should give you more than enough clothing combinations to get started. Michael will have to stay in his second skin boxers for now, though next time I’ll be showing you where to find some great free clothing to cover his bones too.

shadowdancer

We’re almost done, but let’s not forget that STUDIOSTART coupon. This gives a whopping 97% off the price of any bundle listed on these pages – including those items already on sale. For example, the Kay Bundle is currently $23.97 (reduced from $39.95 until the end of July), but use the STUDIOSTART coupon at the checkout and it’s yours for just 73 cents!!! Considering the full price of the individual items is close to sixty bucks, that’s one heck of a bargain.

freakbundle

Which pack you use your coupon on largely depends on the kind of renders you want to produce. As it’s a one-shot offer (use the coupon, and it’s gone) it’s worth looking carefully at all of the packs to decide which one offer the best value for you. Order them by Newest First and you’ll see that the newer bundles easily eclipse the older one both in terms of quality and value with only the FREAK Bundle imho worth consideration out of the older packs. That’s a personal favourite of mine as it includes the FREAK himself as well as a full set of textures, morphs and the all-important bodyuit – perfect for superhero renders!

pvp

I guess the choice boils down to this: if you want to render absurdly muscled superheroes, get the FREAK Bundle. If Dinosaurs are your thing, it’s Predator vs. Prey. If Sci-Fi, grab the SciFi Sets and Vehicles, and if you want to create realistic modern scenes, grab the Modern Apartments bundle.

scifiset

When it comes to fantasy renders, there’s two choices – either the Kay Bundle, or DM Briana. Either are excellent and include a full character and texture set for Victoria 4, poses, scenery, weapons and more. Either is likely to get tons of use, though for my money the Kay bundle just edges forward in terms of re-usability.

briana

Here’s the thing though. All of these bundles are currently on sale so the most one of them will cost you is a buck eigthy after your STUDIOSTART coupon is applied. For what you’re getting in terms of great quality content, that’s a steal!

And I’ve still only scratched the surface of what DAZ3D has to offer the freebooting render junkie. There’s the two free Dystopia city packs (here and here, and I’ve written a tutorial or two how to use them, here and here), the regular weekly freebie with the newsletter, the sizeable freebie archive and the Freepository forums. Phew! And that’s before you even sign up to their Platinum Club ($100/year, and well worth it) and be given a hole load of even more free content to fill your Runtime as a thankyou.

Next time, we’ll take a look at the best of what ShareCG has to offer, and find some clothes for Michael.

Till then!

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28 Responses

  1. Elton says:

    I should have bought the freak. :(

    Anyway, I shall have to save up for him and the Predator + Prey bundle.
    .-= Elton´s last blog ..DAGGERFALL =-.

  2. Greywulf says:

    What did you use your STUDIOSTART coupon on? Just wondering.

    Even without the voucher, he’s well worth the purchase price, imho.

  3. Calie says:

    Don’t forget the four free models Victoria3 Michael3 Aiko3 and Hiro. This package is free and available at downloads.com The Hiro character comes complete with morphs aleady part of him, so no extra’s to buy.

    http://download.cnet.com/Poser-DAZStudio-3D-Models-Pack/3000-6677_4-10579249.html?tag=mncol;lst

  4. Greywulf says:

    @ Calie I’d recommended that set before, how could I miss it?! Thanks!

  5. Steve says:

    I’ve been working through your tutorials, truly excellent, many thanks!

    I got daz 3d so i could try and do some char portraits for my new Mongoose traveller campaign… any suggestions for where i can get some clothes for M4, particularly interested in some combat armour?

  6. Greywulf says:

    Thanks :D

    Compared to Michael 3 (M4’s predecessor, and still a darned fine model), decent armour is a little thin on the ground for M4. Here’s the pick of the bunch:

    Probably the best sci-fi combat armour for M4 is Epsilon and with the Raw Epsilon texture pack, but it ain’t cheap.

    Epsilon is also included with the M4 Pro Bundle which is much better value than getting just Epsilon on it’s own.

    Xurge also offers some brilliant sci-fi and fantasy armours for M4, and they work great in DAZ Studio.

    Over in the land of the freebie, the Nitro Armour could be convincingly re-textured as a scifi armour. I’ll throw together an image to show you how.

    Hope that helps!

  7. Greywulf says:

    There you go. Here’s a pseudo-space marine in Imperial red, courtesy of the Nitro Armour an a little Super-Shiny Shader magic: http://microlite20.net/images/m4_marine.jpg

  8. Steve says:

    Its like being a kid in a sweetshop all over again, so much choice….

    The Nitro armour looks great, i couldn’t get it to attach to M4, does it require any special progs for that or just more effort from me?

    Still have my Studiostart voucher which im thinking the Sci Fi set, although the two girls look neat. The Freak is going for just a few dollars so might just buy outright.

    Once i gain some technical competence and can i’ll look into getting some more expensive items, m4 bundle with a 30% voucher off looks good. I’ll probably change my mind tommorow!!

  9. Greywulf says:

    @Steve Lol! Sweet shop, indeed.

    The Nitro armour is a little fiddly to use as it’s in .obj format (actually .obz compressed .obj, but that’s just splittin’ hairs) rather than being a “proper” Poser/DAZ Studio model. This means you can’t just double-click to load it than Fit it to a figure. What you do instead is……….

    Use File-Import to load the individual elements in. Set the Scale in the Import Dialog which follows to Bryce Scale (1 unit = 8ft). This will scale the pieces to fit Michael 4 correctly and position then over the top of M4 in his default pose.

    Next, in the Scenes tab, expand Michael out so you can see entries for his Chest, Adbomen, Arms, Legs, etc. Drag and drop the entry for each piece of the armour over the body part it covers. This “parents” the items to the location so that it moves when Michael is posed. For example, drag the chest guard over the chest, right thigh guard over the right thigh, etc.

    Hope that helps!

  10. Greywulf says:

    … and here’s another quick render of the Nitro Armor and M4, this time with a whole Dark Cylon vibe going on: http://microlite20.net/images/m4_dark_cylon.jpg

  11. Cypherwulfe says:

    I like your tutorials, they are exactly what i have been looking for to help me get started.

    One problem I have is, the additional content pack that I got when I registered will not work. I installed it, but there is no fairy outfit, or anythign that I can find anywhere…..

    Was I supposed to do something other than just run the installer?

  12. Greywulf says:

    Hello from one Wulf to another! :D

    It might be that you need to change the way that the Content tab is displaying things. Click on the little triangle in the top right-hand corner of that tab and select “View Folders as List”.

    If that doesn’t work, press F2 to show Preferences and select the Directories tab. Click on the drop-down and select “Poser Content Directories” then press Add… and choose your DAZ Studio/content folder (mine is at c:/Program Files/DAZ/Studio/content – if you’re using DAZ Studio 3 it may differ). Click Accept and you should see everything in your Runtime folder.

    Hope that helps!

  13. Cypherwulfe says:

    Wow, that was a rather quick reply. I didnt expect to hear from you so soon.

    I am using DAZ Studio 3, and on a windows 7 installation. I am thinking MAYBE that windows is the cause, however the program itself works without any noticable issues.

    I do know one that that is different. Just about everywhere says that when I start it the first time, that a Quickstart of some form is supposed to pop up. It does not for me.

    I am going to try a fresh install tonight, without any of the default stuff that comes in the DAZ Studio instalation, and then try to load the additional free content…. Maybe I can see where it is and then be able to find it later…. Who knows.

    And yeah, Another Wulfe hehehe…. Been using that handle for ohh…… 16ish years now?

  14. Greywulf says:

    Good luck! Let me know how you get on :D

  15. Cypherwulfe says:

    Just wanted to let you know I got it to work.

    The issue had to do with directories. There was a Program Files/DAZ/Studio/content folder, as well as a DAZ/Studio 3/content folder…. That may or may not be entirely correct.

    However, the long and short of it is, I was installing somewhere that didn’t exist previously, and DAZ Studio was looking somewhere that had nothing in it.

  16. Denis says:

    Hi I noticed a lot of things didn’t run for me the first week I was using DAZ 3, but my friend and I finally found out the problem, it’s all where you unzip, or in most cases, install, your content. The easiest way to describe i is it’s under user/(in my case Denis), then documents/daz3d/studio/content. Go no deeper than content, that should cure most of your problems. And if you’re a bit anal like me, it’s worth going back and reinstalling everything there so it’s easier to find when using DAZ and you don’t have to worry about searching for hours. I had to fumble around on DAZ for weeks trying to figure it out, it’s extremely vague wen it comes to the “how to” section.

  17. Lee Shaw says:

    Awesome advice, Bought the scifi apartments for $2.70! what an incredible saving.


  18. Cypherwulfe:

    I like your tutorials, they are exactly what i have been looking for to help me get started.
    One problem I have is, the additional content pack that I got when I registered will not work. I installed it, but there is no fairy outfit, or anythign that I can find anywhere…..
    Was I supposed to do something other than just run the installer?

    plz help!!!!! the same thing happened to me except now i can’t download it again!!!!! all of my avalable downloads are GONE!!!!! PLEASE HELP!!!!! the reason i downloaded daz3d was to make fairy art!!!! D: D: D: D: D:

    • greywulf says:

      If the problem you had was the same as Cypherwulfe’s then I suggest you uninstall the content pack and re-install it into your documents/daz3d/studio/content folder. The free additional content was setup for an earlier version of DAZ Studio which stored things in a slightly different location to the one it uses now.

      If that’s not the case, it may be that your layout is set to use DAZ Studio’s built in “catalog view” of your content. This lets you organize your content in any way you wish. That’s great if you don’t mind sorting and organizing things yourself, but if (like me) that doesn’t sound like your idea of fun, do this:

      Select the Content tab and press the little black triangle in the top right corner. Select “View Folders as List”. Done!

      Hope that helps!

  19. thanks, but that download is gone from my avalable downloads, and when i click the past download thingy all i get is things from the store….and how do i uninstall it?

    • greywulf says:

      Over at DAZ Studio, head into My Account then our Order History and hit Reset. Wait a little while, and the files will be available to download in your Available Downloads again.

      Good luck!

  20. ahhhh thanks!!!!!!! now i have downloaded it again and i have tryed both of that stuff, but it still isa’nt on their…..??

  21. Lady Morgan says:

    I’m a big fan of Courageous and it’s add ons for inexpensive leather or chain armor in a variety of looks. It’s items like that which make me a happy Platinum Club member.

  22. feat3 says:

    its no counter strike models?

  23. duce says:

    hey your a real life saver but i was wondering if you knew where i could get the code to auto fit my clothes and stuff because i just don’t have two hundred dollars to shell out like that. Also if you know where i can get free clothes and hair and poses if possable thanks in advance

  24. blowme says:

    these are neither “free” nor “cheap” nice try though, can find better ones on torrent, ass.

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