July 28, 2023 Linh Nguyen

Should we use Blender or Maya for animation?

Blender and Maya are two of the most widely used 3D modeling and animation applications. Many experienced users said that Blender is far ahead of Maya when it comes to sculpting tools and achieves the same level of quality related to 3D modeling. For those new to the animation industry, you might ask the question “Should I use Blender or Maya for animation?”. Let’s explore with iRender these two famous software and the animation capabilities of each software. From there you will find out the answer and see which software suits your needs.

Image Source: Pingle Studio

Blender Overview

Blender is a free and open-source application. The Blender Foundation created Blender, one of the fastest-growing communities in the tech world today. Blender is commonly used as a 3D modeling software, allowing you to build 3D scenes and models for various industries. It is used in animation, game design, architectural design, visual effects, motion capture, logo design, motion graphics, and more. In addition, it is capable of modeling, sculpting, UV mapping, texturing, shading, lighting, rigging, animation, simulation, rendering, compositing, video editing, and many other tasks. Between Maya and Blender, in terms of easy-to-learn modeling and better workflow for beginners, Blender has the upper hand. 

Blender 3.6 (Image Source: Blender Nation)

Maya Overview

One of the leading software in the 3D modeling industry is Maya which was developed by Autodesk. Maya has a wide range of tools for animation, simulation, and modeling. You can also use it for motion graphics, virtual reality, UV maps, low poly, and character creation. This 3D software is very popular in the video game industry. It can be used to create detailed and realistic characters, as well as environments, thanks to a great set of texture options. In addition, the software also owns many proprietary virtual technologies including Maya nCloth, Maya nParticles, Maya Fur, Maya Hair, and Maya Fluid Effects. This not only makes the character’s image more realistic but also helps create vivid interactions between parts of the body and the character’s movements. Therefore, it will also be more realistic, bringing the best visual experience to the viewer.

Autodesk Maya (Image Source: Autodesk)

Should we use Blender or Maya for animation?

In many artistic projects, including video games, movies, and advertisements, animation is crucial. In this article, iRender will compare two popular 3D modeling and animation programs – Blender and Maya. And see what they are capable of in terms of animation.


First thing, let’s see what Blender and Maya have for animating.

Blender includes excellent rigging and animation tools, which have been used to produce VFX, short films, and animation. It has features for motion tracking, sound addition, sound synchronization with motion, soundtrack addition, and much more. 

Meanwhile, Maya has a large collection of useful tools for character animation. After you have the animation arranged, you can experiment with cyclical movements like a walking cycle just by repeating it. Besides, Maya’s polygon technology allows for various creative decisions and has tools for two-manifold and non-manifold polygonal geometry, non-planar polygons, retopology, polygon coloring, and polygonal modeling reference. Maya sculpting tools are suitable for editing meshes in alternative ways.

Animation – Blender vs Maya

Overall, both Blender and Maya allow you to use an automatic keyframing tool or just apply keyframes to certain properties. To produce a more interesting animation, you can add keyframes to the object, modify the time, and edit the curve. In terms of animating tools, Blender and Maya are very similar. However, each of them could possibly be better in a particular aspect.

2D animation

The Grease Pencil is a 2D animation system that comes with Blender. From design to storyboarding, scene layout to animation, and visual effects, it can create a whole pipeline for 2D animation production. It is quite impressive. In fact, Blender has been used in the making of a famous cartoon called Hero, which is very interesting.

On the other hand, NURBS modeling helps you to build characters using geometric primitives and drawn curves, and Polygon modeling in Maya allows you to create 2D/3D models utilizing geometry based on vertices, edges, and faces. Characters may be shaped and molded using Maya’s sculpting toolset. Your favorite characters and monsters can have realistic hair and fur thanks to interactive grooming features in Maya. 

Modeling Capabilities

For 3D modeling, Blender provides a variety of tools. Some of the key modeling tools in Blender are Mesh modeling, Sculpting and Painting, Curve and Surface modeling, and Boolean operations.

Maya is famous for its professional and industry-standard modeling tools. Some of the key modeling tools in Blender are Polygon modeling, NURBS modeling, Sculpting and Painting, Curve and Surface modeling. Both programs support mesh, painting and sculpting, modeling of curves and surfaces, boolean operations, extrusion and beveling, decimation and retopology, displacement, and baking of normal maps. However, Blender has more advanced and user-friendly sculpting tools than Maya. Contrarily, NURBS modeling is a feature of Maya that Blender does not support. 

Blender and Maya Pricing

While Maya is a proprietary 3D computer graphics program offered by Autodesk with a subscription-based pricing plan, Blender is a free, open-source 3D creation tool. The cost of a single-user subscription for Maya starts at $235/month.


It can be said that Maya is the industry standard for 3D applications. It is an efficient program that allows users to model, texture, render, and run simulations and animations. On the other side, Blender is more intuitive in some areas than Maya. One can create the same animation, assets, or render in Maya or Blender. This depends on the skill and effectiveness of the developer or artist, which governs the creation of a product. Therefore, using Blender or Maya for animation depends a lot on your project.

Boost your render progress in Blender and Maya with iRender Farm

Working with both Blender and Maya is a process that requires a lot of skill. Users will need to hone and learn every day. iRender provides high-performance GPU rendering services to unleash creativity for 3D artists. We offer high configurations machines from 1/2/4/6/8 GPU servers using the top-tier RTX 4090 and RTX 3090. Almost servers at iRender are powered by powerful AMD Ryzen Threadripper PRO CPUs with up to 64 cores, 256GB RAM, and 2TB NVMe SSD storage, our servers can handle even the most demanding Blender and Maya scenes. Especially with a “beast”, it will meet the ability to create animation and short movies in a short time. This will save you a lot of money in the production process. 

The workflow at iRender is also extremely simple. You will connect and take full control via the Remote Desktop file then you will install Blender and Maya (just ONE time). Then you start rendering and modeling like the way you do on your local machine.

Recently, we launched iRender app for Windows users. This application is very convenient, you just download it for free and a workflow with iRender will be built-in:

Let’s see our tests on server 8 RTX 3090 packages for Maya and V-Ray:

We have a big promotion: Get 100% bonus for the first transaction within 24h of your registration. It means that you can get an extra 100% of the money you recharged the first time. 

Create ACCOUNT now to enjoy the big deal! For further information, please do not hesitate to reach us at [email protected] or Whatsapp: +(84) 916017116. 


iRender – Happy Rendering!

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Linh Nguyen

Hi everyone. I work as an Assistant Customer at iRender. I always hope to know more 3D artists, data scientists from all over the world.


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