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  1. #1
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    Questions about Manga Studio

    I'm thinking of ordering Manga Studio EX4 on Friday when I get my financial aid installment, but I was wondering a couple of things. Is it the equivalent of Adobe Illustrator in some respects? I have Photoshop version 6, but I don't have Illustrator. I thought I remembered reading online somewhere that Manga Studio is similar to Adobe Illustrator, with vector capabilities.

    My other question is will my system be compatible? I bought a Toshiba laptop about a year ago, it is Windows 7 Home Premium 32-bit with AMD Sempron SI-42, 2 GB ram, and 250 GB hard drive.

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    I use MS EX4 for all of my comic-book style illustration work.

    No, Manga Studio isn't like Illustrator--but it does have some vector / perspective line / etc. tools that are very handy. To me, Illustrator is a design program that can be used to draw (though that's less true with each version, as Adobe adds more art-friendly tools). Manga Studio is a ground-up drawing program for people who *draw*.

    The very best thing to do for your own sake is to pick up the 30-day trial version and just wear it out! Use that 30 days to push everything the software can do, always thinking of what YOU are gonna use it for. Nothing else will satisfy your own questions and give you a better answer than that!

    The link for the trial is here: Manga Studio Trial

    No matter what I say about how it's worked for me, your own experiences with it will be your best answer. If you're interested in what other people are doing with it, all of the black and white artwork (including the pencils, which are Manga Studio EX4 as well) in my portfolio is done with MS EX4. Check out the link in my signature if you think that'll help you out.

    Fred!

    I push pixels for a living, and I love it.
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  5. #3
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    Thanks Fred!

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    depending on what you need it for i would purchase the debut version over ex4, i got the debut version on amazon a while ago for 25$ not sure what it is now the debut version is much cheaper but you dont get vector tools, which i dont really care for in manga studio, no 3-d tools, but you can use sketch up for free, and no symetry mode but you can always copy and paste and reverse a side if you want symmetry, i think its the best program out there for line work, ive used, photoshop, painter, sai, artrage, sketchbook pro, illustrator, and flash, all of them pale in comparison in my opinion over how nice if line work you can get from manga studio. im attaching 2 pics to show how you can get very differntline work in the same program hope this helps

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  8. #5
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    Thanks Mikeorion22, but the vector tools are what I need the most from Manga Studio, to make my dialogue and dialogue balloons.

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    Maybe you could get the Debut version of MS and use Inkscape for the vector objects and import them?

    http://inkscape.org/

    ~John

    John Garrett
    Illustrator-in-training
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  11. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by vapsman88 View Post
    Maybe you could get the Debut version of MS and use Inkscape for the vector objects and import them?

    http://inkscape.org/

    ~John
    Thanks for the tip, but that's too complicated for me. I would rather have vector capabilites in Manga Studio.

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    The vector facilities in MS EX are very good and worth having if you can afford the extra. Debut is also minus a few rulers which are the best in the whole universe.

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    why do you need the vector tools for lettering and word bubbles?

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeorion22 View Post
    why do you need the vector tools for lettering and word bubbles?
    Yeah, unless you're doing something that I can't think of, you don't need vectors for the bubbles and lettering. It all goes to print the same.

    Ace, you might be overthinking this one. Get the trial--you'll see.

    And yes, the rulers are A M A Z I N G. So definitely consider those.

    I push pixels for a living, and I love it.
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  15. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeorion22 View Post
    why do you need the vector tools for lettering and word bubbles?
    They say to use Illustrator for lettering because of the vector capabilities, that's why I want Manga Studio EX4. You're not supposed to use raster graphics for lettering.

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  16. #12
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    it can help with edibility, but you dont need it to letter, the problem is is that you can only try out manga studio debut, not ex4 with the vector tools, i just use it for line work not to color, i would listen to fred lang and see if you can do with out them to save the money, i would have just stayed with debut if i had a chance to play with ex4 but i might be in the minority,

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  17. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeorion22 View Post
    it can help with edibility, but you dont need it to letter, the problem is is that you can only try out manga studio debut, not ex4 with the vector tools, i just use it for line work not to color, i would listen to fred lang and see if you can do with out them to save the money, i would have just stayed with debut if i had a chance to play with ex4 but i might be in the minority,
    Money isn't a problem for me, I'm getting financial aid for college and I'd rather spend more for the correct tools than pay less now and have to pay even more later when I find out I should've gotten EX4 to begin with. I want to be a professional comic book artist some day, so I need the right tools for the job.

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  18. #14
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    you apparently have never used the program but you think the debut version will some how be the wrong tool and make you unprofessional, skottie young used the debut version and he's a professional, you seem set on the more expensive one, just buy it if you think thats going to make the difference of being a professional

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeorion22 View Post
    you apparently have never used the program but you think the debut version will some how be the wrong tool and make you unprofessional, skottie young used the debut version and he's a professional, you seem set on the more expensive one, just buy it if you think thats going to make the difference of being a professional
    I've been told by professional comic book artists never to letter comics with Photoshop, to use Illustrator instead, because it has vector graphics. I can't get Illustrator because my computer is 32-bit and Illustrator requires 64-bit. I will be getting a better computer eventually so I can buy the newest versions of Photoshop and Illustrator, but until then, I have Photoshop version 6 (from 2000), and I want to get Manga Studio EX4 to supplement it, and the vector tools of Manga Studio EX4 are what I need to do comic book lettering properly.

    It's not because I just have some wild whim to get EX4, from the research I've done that is what I need for what I want to do. I want all the extra features and I'm willing to pay a little more for them.

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  20. #16
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    Have you considered trying something like Serif DrawPlus for vector capabilities? The full version of the software is something like $99, but you can try a free version as well.

    Just another thought.

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    Quote Originally Posted by munho View Post
    Have you considered trying something like Serif DrawPlus for vector capabilities? The full version of the software is something like $99, but you can try a free version as well.

    Just another thought.
    I'd rather get Manga Studio because more people use it/have heard of it and I'll be able to find tutorials and ask people for tips. But thank you for the suggestion.

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    Honestly, for someone who has used Manga Studio Debut, EX, and Illustrator (along with a variety of other art software, both vector and raster), if the only reason why you are considering Manga Studio is for dialogue balloons and text, then you may as well not invest in the program.

    Don't get me wrong, I love all three and each are fantastic in the purpose they serve and beyond. In fact, like mikeorione22 showed, Manga Studio is an incredibly versatile program for outlines and to aid in other kinds of art. However, if text is simply all you want to do with the program, it may not be a worthwhile investment for you and you could use your money elsewhere.

    The reason why those professional comic artists recommended that you do your lettering and dialogue balloons rendering in a vector program comes from the fact that vectors can be infinitely scalable and don't utilize anti-alias lines. Which means, when you print your images your lines come out crispy smooth when you do black and white printing and can be resized on a whim without quality loss. That is why vector graphics are utilized in advertisements and logo production since they are more practical for printing and sizing purposes. Illustrator is universally scalable, while Manga Studio, despite having these capabilities as well, isn't used for that purpose but rather for the creation of clear lines set at high resolutions. While lines can be scaled in MS, it's not as as smooth as Illustrator in this particular sense.

    Otherwise, anti-alias lines, which uses lighter versions of the same hue to soften the line to give the illusion of smooth lines comes out blurry, and if done with grayscale tone or tone with anti-aliasing can cause an effect called "moire", or improper translation of toning, or overlapping of tones, to the printing press and mucking up the effect you wanted to achieve with them in the first place. That is why comic artists need high ppi tone sheets that are completely black and white.

    As such: Questions about Manga Studio

    It would seem the softer one would print out better since it appears aesthetically better on the screen, but it's quite the opposite in reality. It all depends on the printer and a huge no no is printing with grayscale or color profiles on a black and white printer.

    Usually, the ones who buy programs like Manga Studio, Comicworks, etc. do so to streamline their digital comic book creation work flow within that program to do all their artwork since the programs work completely in a vector like setting and used, you guessed it, alias lines, lines without blurring on the edges that look jagged and sharp up close up are integral to smooth printing reproduction of black and white images on a black and white press, which also usually requires a higher resolution of 600-1200 ppi which those professional comic artists probably also recommended. Color presses usually require less and can utilize anti-alias lines fine, but many people prefer to use the vector alias capabilities of programs like Manga Studio and Illustrator so their artwork print out crisp, but even so, at a high resolution so the jagged edges of the pixels don't show noticeably.

    So, what I'm saying is, I love MS and I think the program is fantastic if you plan on utilizing and understanding all its capabilities, but if all you want to do is add text and make word balloons, it really isn't worth the investment. You can do the same thing MS does in PS to suit your needs: All you need to do is when you open up the Photoshop is make sure you are saving on a 1 bit image (black and white), make sure your current image is high resolution, and apply your text and balloons! Works the same way MS does, but perhaps without the finese and scaling features, but the technique produces the same result. What YOU specifically need does not require the full power of vector graphics, and in MS EX you would get the rulers and vector manipulation which only becomes pertinent if you plan on using it for drawing and image creation (basically, editing nodes and such). You can get by with PS alone or some other free vector application.

    Although, I still say give the trial a whirl! Even though MS Debut does not have true vector capabilities, Debut itself is still a vector art program ie works with alias lines that are infinitely scalable. With your needs, there really isn't a difference between the Debut and the EX version that you would notice and while EX is definitely the more feature rich version, if you don't plan on using it much outside of your stated needs, it wouldn't be worth the cost and you could use your financial aid for other artistic tools.

    I hope this helps!

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  23. #19
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    hi, i am a manga stUdio User. i love the result in black and White and I haven't any problem to print it ; but i loose alot of quality When I pUt it in photoshop to color it. in photoshop i don't see all effects i have done With the pen :'( Does anyone know how I Can fight against this Capricious soft? (i mean photoshop, because I really get Well With MS ^^)

    Thank you for reading this POSt (i apologiZe fOr my poor English... and MY faulty keyboard Which lives its last mOments...)

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