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Alias Releases Maya Personal Learning Edition 4.5

Free 3D suite supports Mac OS X By Dave Nagel
Alias|Wavefront yesterday released Maya Personal Learning Edition version 4.5 as a free download. The new version of the free 3D modeling and animation suite gains a number of new features and will support Mac OS X and Windows operating systems.

The Maya Personal Learning Edition offers all of the features of the commercially available Maya Complete 4.5, with two differences: Renders are watermarked, and projects are saved in a proprietary format that can't be opened by the commercial version of the software. It's targeted specifically toward students. According to Alias|Wavefront, the previous release of Maya PLE had more than 250,000 downloads in the last year.

Aside from being updated to match the features of Maya Complete 4.5, the new version also includes some PLE-specific improvements. These include an improved user interface, multi-lingual beginner's guide and functional improvements. Watermarks are no longer visible when working in wireframe mode. And it's now possible to import more data types, including files from the commercial version.

Maya PLE 4.5 has been available since December in CD form and as a part of the Learning Maya | Beginner's Guide, which includes the software, a one-hour DVD and a booklet introducing Maya PLE. The download version is available through Alias|Wavefront's Web site at

Contact the author: Dave Nagel is the producer of Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; host of several World Wide User Groups, including Synthetik Studio Artist, Adobe Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, Adobe LiveMotion, Creative Mac and Digital Media Designer; and executive producer of the Digital Media Net family of publications. You can reach him at

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