Alias|Wavefront has announced Maya 4.5 Personal Learning Edition as a free download.

This version builds on the success of Maya Personal Learning Edition that was launched in February 2002, and which has been downloaded 250,000 times.

Maya claims substantial enhancements make Maya 4.5 Personal Learning Edition a more effective learning tool.

The watermark is no longer visible when working in wireframe mode, so users can concentrate on developing modelling skills.

It is also possible to import different data types, including files from the commercial version of Maya. This gives users access to the many Learning Tools from Alias|Wavefront, as well as after-market books and the virtual Maya community on the Web.

This version also includes new modelling tools, subdivision surfaces, integrated 3D paint and numerous user interface and workflow enhancements.