03 June 2012

Kernon Dillon - BlenderNewbies - Tutorial Compilation DVD - Training DVD Review

www.blendernewbies.com is a very popular website that generates lots of video tutorials for new/intermediate Blender users, describing large areas of functionality in Blender.

Recently they released a Tutorial compilation DVD with most of the tutorials included on the DVD, as well as extra materials and higher quality video.

When I found out about the DVD I navigated over to the BlenderNewbies website and decided to order the DVD.

Ordering the DVD was very easy as PayPal support was one of the payment options, which made things quick and efficient. The DVD cost $35 dollars, which to me seems reasonable given that there are 14 hours of video tutorials.

Once I had placed my order I waited for it to arrive.

About a week after I ordered the DVD, I was sent an email informing me that there was going to be a slight delay in sending my order because an extra CD-R disc was being included with extra material on it. Thoughtfully I was given the option of choosing weather to wait longer for the extra CD-R content or not waiting and just receiving the original DVD. I chose to wait for the extra CD-R.

When the ordered package had arrived I inspected its contents and found it to be very well packaged.

The contents of the package are listed below:
  • BlenderNewbies - Tutorial Compilation DVD Rome
  • BlenderNewbies - Bonus CD-R Disc
  • Blender 2.47 QuickStart - Cheat Sheet
  • Useful Blender Keystrokes strip
  • BlenderNewbies Bookmark
  • Blender Foundation Bookmark
All the items seemed to me to be of a very high quality (I didn't know that the Blender Foundation or BlenderNewbies produced bookmarks).

The 2 most important items obviously are the DVD and CD-R and both of these are very well made and produced. Both played very reliably in my laptop and desktop machine. The DVD disc was housed in a very solid DVD case and was shrink wrapped.

I worked my way through the 14 hours of video material on the DVD and this alone was worth the price. Also on the DVD was extra bonus material and a snapshot copy of the Blender wiki. The disc based copy of the wiki seems to be fairly recent as some of the documents and alterations I made to the online wiki are also on this DVD based version (can also be viewed online at wiki.blender.org). Very useful.

The quality of the videos on the DVD were of very high quality as promised and in some cases much, much clearer than the online versions. Well worth having.

If there is one criticism of the tutorials DVD for me it would be that the Old Country Pathway tutorial video is still after all this time incomplete and it would have made a lot of sense to complete the tutorial before releasing the DVD.

The bonus CD-R was filled with some extra time lapse videos and Blender files. Although these time lapse videos were fun to watch it's not clear to me what educational use they are. I did enjoy watching the piggy bank video time lapse, and the CD-R was free so I can't really complain. Though I think it would he been useful to have more spoken tutorials instead.

All in all an excellent resource with good videos, blend files and wiki snapshot.

Review Score 85%