If you’re looking to invest in the best 3D modeling software on the market, one option to consider is Adobe Dimension. With in-depth model design and virtual photography features, Dimension is used in packaging design, brand visualization, advertising, and more.
Adobe offers several different ways to access Dimension, including as part of its Creative Cloud set of software. It might not always be obvious what the most cost-efficient plan is, however, so in this feature, we explain how to download Adobe Dimension as a free trial, the various pricing plans available, and any alternatives that you might want to consider.
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Can I download Dimension for free?
You can download Dimension and try it out for seven days as a free trial. To access this, go to the main Dimension page on Adobe’s website—it’s usually the top search engine result for “Adobe Dimension”—and click Free Trial. You will be given the choice of trialing Dimension alone or the whole Creative Cloud suite.
You do have to give Adobe your payment details when you sign up for the trial, and when the week ends, a paid subscription will automatically begin. If you don’t want to commit to this, make sure to cancel the subscription before the trial is over, or you might end up having to pay a cancellation fee.
During your seven days, you can try out the various aspects of Dimension and decide whether you want to continue using it. There’s no way to continue using it for free, so after the trial, you'll have to look at the payment plans available.
How do I buy Dimension?
From the Dimension page on Adobe’s website, click either Buy Now or Choose a Plan, and you’ll be taken to the page giving you all the options for buying it. Do note that all the plans are subscription-based, and there’s no option to pay a one-off fee to have the software outright.
You can either subscribe to Dimension on its own or go for the Creative Cloud All Apps package, which includes over 20 desktop and mobile apps. Some of these can work alongside Dimension, such as image-editing app Photoshop and vector design app Illustrator. If you’re likely to use three or more Creative Cloud programs, then the All Apps plan probably works out as the most cost-effective choice for you.
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What’s the price of Dimension?
Paying for a full year at once does work out cheaper than a monthly subscription for 12 months, but if you’re not going to use Dimension every month, the more cost-effective approach is to pick up the monthly subscription when you need it and to pause it when you don’t.
With the Creative Cloud All Apps package, the standard subscription costs $52.99 / £49.94 / AU$76.99 per month, though this includes an annual commitment—if you cancel before the year is over, you have to pay a cancellation fee of 50% of your remaining subscription. Alternatively, you can subscribe for $79.49 / £75.85 / AU$114.99 per month without this commitment, meaning you can pause the subscription whenever you like without a fee. Or, you can pay $599.88 / £596.33 / AU$871.07 for a full year.
Note that these prices were correct at the time of writing, but prices outside the US often fluctuate with the exchange rates. Also, you can cancel any Adobe subscription within the first 14 days and get a full refund.
Dimension discounts for teachers and students
Adobe offers a discount scheme that enables students and teachers to pay the price of one app for the complete Creative Cloud package, including Dimension, all the other desktop and mobile apps, and 100GB of cloud storage. This costs a monthly fee of $19.99 / £16.24 / AU$21.99 for the first year, then $29.99 / £25.28 / AU$43.99 per month afterward. Like with the main Creative Cloud plan, you’ll need to commit to a year at a time. You can prepay for a full year, but this doesn’t work out cheaper. Adobe asks for proof of eligibility; the easiest way to do this is to use a school-issued email address when you sign up.
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How can I get started with Dimension?
As Adobe Dimension is an in-depth, feature-packed app, it has a steep learning curve. If you’re struggling to get started, then the tutorials section on Adobe’s website can help you build your skills. Another useful resource is this list of tips for getting started with Dimension, compiled by Creative Bloq.
Dimension: Key info you need to know
A relatively recent addition to Adobe’s portfolio, Dimension was launched in 2017. It’s a 3D rendering and design app, but unlike some other comparable programs, models aren’t actually created in Dimension: you import models from other software and use this to render them in various environments and add graphic design. Despite this limitation, it has incredibly flexible features that enable packaging visualization and virtual photography. Be aware that it’s a desktop-only app, available for macOS and Windows computers.
Dimension: Android and iOS apps
Adobe does not offer a version of Dimension for mobile devices, and since it’s quite a complex app, it’s unlikely that they’re planning to develop one any time soon. However, Adobe does offer various mobile apps, including drawing tool Adobe Fresco and image-editing tool Photoshop Mix. Basic versions of these can be downloaded and used for free, and the full versions can be subscribed to individually or as part of the Creative Cloud All Apps package.
If you decide that Dimension isn’t the right software choice for you, there are plenty of alternatives available. One popular choice is Blender. While Dimension focuses on rendering, Blender covers the entire process: modeling, rendering, video editing, and everything in between. Plus, it’s open-source software, so it’s available for free.
Another option is Autodesk 3DS Max. Its deep functionality, including 3D character controls, make it a popular choice for game designers. It’s expensive, though: $1,700 a year.
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