MagicaVoxel vs Qubicle

In this post we provide a detailed comparison of Magicavoxel and Qubicle. We will discuss the features and abilities as well as some of the strong points that each voxel editor has to offer.

Top Voxel Editors Today

When it comes to creating voxel art, there are several software options to choose from. The two voxel programs that stand above the rest though, are MagicaVoxel and Qubicle. But even though these two programs are considered voxel editors, it's important to learn about their strengths and differences so that you choose the best option for the type of voxel art you want to create. We will be discussing this below.

MagicaVoxel

MagicaVoxel has several strong points compared to Qubicle like the rendering engine.

If you have subscribed to Mega Voxels on Instagram you’ll notice that a lot of the voxel art there is created using a program called MagicaVoxel. MagicaVoxel is a lightweight 8-bit voxel editor that was developed by @ephtracy for building voxel models for artwork and video games for both Windows and Mac. What makes this such a popular choice with artists? It's free to download and use. And to make it even better you can use the software for commercial use with no royalties.

So what exactly do you get with MagicaVoxel? Most things you would expect from a modern voxel editor. MagicaVoxel gives artists the ability to add, edit, move and paint voxels on a 3D grid. It also has tools in place to help duplicate, organize and group voxel models together. On top of all of this, MagicaVoxel has a powerful rendering engine built in to give your creations amazing visual detail. When a creation is done, it then provides numerous export options to transfer the voxel model into other projects like the Unity game engine or even share a picture to a social network like Instagram.

Another benefit with MagicaVoxel is that it's constantly being updated. @ephtracy is always adding new features and tools to make the program easier to use, and give creators the ability to add more cool effects to their creations. If you follow his twitter handle he is always posting new updates and examples of artwork that use new features.

Since MagicaVoxel is technically an open source project, its also very easy to get help when working on your projects. It has a big community of artists that are very friendly. Many of them use this program on a regular basis for work and school, so any questions you have someone will probably already have the answer. In addition to this, because MagicaVoxel is so popular, you'll also find a ton of tutorials that teach you how to use pretty much any aspect of the program. If you want to see our list of tutorials make sure to visit our Build page!

MagicaVoxel is free to use for personal and commercial projects although a shoutout in the credits is greatly appreciated. You can download it by checking out the website below:

Qubicle has its own unique features that stand out compared to MagicaVoxel such as the export options.


Qubicle is the other major voxel editor on the market today. This voxel editor was created by Minddesk to help artists create 3D voxel models for art and games. Over the years Qubicle has built quite the reputation amongst game developers.  If you visit their site you will find multiple hit games that developed art for their games using Qubicle. Some of the hit titles include Crossy Road and Shooty Skies, both which are Editor's Choice on the Apple App Store.

Qubicle as a voxel program is actually very similar to Magicavoxel in many ways. It gives creators the ability to add, edit, move and paint voxels on a 3D grid called a "Matrix". It also provides creators with several several tools such as paint bucket, magic wand and extrude tools. 

However there are some advantages to Qubicle over Magicavoxel. Qubicle gives you the option to export to Maya FBX, OBJ, and Collada (.DAE), whereas Magicavoxel only provides the OBJ export option. This is critical especially for game developers. Whether you decide to use Unity, Unreal or code a game directly in Xcode, Qubicle will more than likely support the correct file type.

The other big benefit of using Qubicle is that Magicavoxel restricts the 3D grid that you build inside of to 128x128x128. Qubicle on the other hand has no limit on the size of the matrix you build inside of. This comes in handy especially when your making more detailed models. There's no need to group several 128 voxel grids.

The only thing with Qubicle is that it charges a one time fee to purchase a license. You can download the trial to try it out, but to get all the features including the export options you'll have to purchase the full version. You can download the trial and full version at the website below:

Qubicle by Minddesk

What's the Best Voxel Editor?

After trying out both I can safely say that there is definitely room for both of these voxel editor's today. And that's because they both have different strong points depending on what you are trying to accomplish. 

MagicaVoxel's built in rendering engine makes it perfect for generating gorgeous voxel images that are very eye-catching. This makes it superior to Qubicle's generic rendering window. Once you get more advanced you can even use some cool voxel effects such as marching cubes to give your models an even cooler look. That just simply doesn't exist in Qubicle at this time.

When it comes to game development however, Qubicle beats out MagicaVoxel by far with its numerous export options making it perfect for game developers. In addition to its export options there's several compression options that are invaluable especially if you're developing games for mobile devices that have limited resources and space.

What is your favorite editor? Let us know in the comments below. Thanks for reading.

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