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(Legacy) License Types

This information applies only to licenses purchased before April 20, 2022.

ZBrush and its related software is available in three different license varieties.  Two of these are serialized and one is server-managed. 

Serialized Licenses

Serialized copies are called this because they use a serial number (also called a license key).  When you install your software, you activate it on that machine using your serial number.  If you're going to reinstall your operating system or move your software to a different computer, you need to deactivate it in order to free that activation for later reuse. 

  • Single-User License
    • The most basic license type, it is ideal for 1-4 copies of the software.  All privately owned licenses will be this type.  Single-user licenses allow your software to be concurrently activated on any two computers, provided that both copies aren't actually used at the same time.  This is not meant to allow two artists to share a license.  It simply allows ONE artist the freedom to have the application in two places, such as at home and on a laptop.
    • ZBrush and ZBrushCore licenses are available as either Perpetual or Subscription licenses (see the section farther down this page for more information). 
      • The ZBrush to KeyShot Bridge is only available as a Perpetual license at this time.
    • All ZBrush 20XX, ZBrushCore 20XX and ZBrush to KeyShot Bridge licenses are dual-platform licenses, meaning that you can have it activated on two macOS machines, two Windows machines or one of each. 
  • Volume License
    • Only available as Perpetual Licenses.
    • This requires five or more seats.  It is still serialized but it simplifies license management by combining all copies under one serial number.  The serial number allows a number of concurrent activations equal to the number of seats purchased.  As a result, rather than having to track which serial number was used to activate which computer, you can simply keep track of which computers have your software installed.  
    • All ZBrush 20XX and ZBrushCore 20XX licenses are dual-platform licenses, meaning that you can have it activated on any combination of macOS and Windows machines, up to the number of activations for which you have purchased seats. 
    • If you have single-user licenses already and wish to convert to the volume system, there is no cost for this.  Simply submit a Support ticket to start this conversion.
    • If you have a volume license, you must purchase additional seats by placing a Support ticket rather than using our online store.  The store cannot add new seats to a volume license.  By purchasing through our staff, we can ensure that the new seats are properly added to your existing license.


Server-Managed (Floating) Licenses (Not available for ZBrushCore)

Until further notice, we are only able to accept purchases for additional floating seats.  We cannot accept orders for new floating server purchases.

Only available as Perpetual licenses.

For our larger customers, serialized licenses can become cumbersome due to the difficulty of activating and deactivating many copies of ZBrush at once.  To help with this we offer floating licenses.  These licenses use one of your own servers to manage ZBrush usage for your artists.  Whenever an artist launches ZBrush, it checks with your server to see if a seat is available.  If so, ZBrush launches.

Another benefit to the floating system is that it supports license roaming.  This allows a seat to be checked out from the server for up to 30 days, during which time the machine can be disconnected from the network.  This is of great benefit when preparing for a trade show or when allowing artists to put ZBrush on a laptop.

Here are some key points about the floating system:

  • We support Windows, macOS or Linux servers.  This includes virtual machines (VM's).
  • It requires a minimum of 10 seats.  Floating licenses are not available for any fewer quantities and no exceptions are made for this.
  • We use the Reprise License Manager (RLM) from Reprise Software.  This is the program that will be installed on your server to manage the licenses.  You do not need to pay for this separately as its use is included in our set-up fee.
  • For users switching from serialized licenses to the floating system, there is a one-time set-up fee of $949.  This is true for academic customers as well.
  • The price per seat is identical to that of serialized copies.  We do not charge a premium for our floating seats or charge any subscription/maintenance fees.
  • Serialized licenses can be converted to floating.  Floating seats may not be converted to serialized.

Academic Licenses vs. Commercial Licenses

All ZBrushCore or ZBrush to KeyShot Bridge licenses are commercial licenses and may be used for any purpose.

ZBrush allows the choice between academic and commercial licenses.  Academic licenses are always perpetual licenses (see the section below).  Commercial licenses may be used in any way.  Academic licenses are available at a reduced price and are for learning purposes, only.  They may not be used to earn money -- either working for hire or by selling what you create with the software.  An academic license may be upgraded to a commercial license at any time by paying 50% of the commercial license price.  To do this, please submit a Support ticket.

Subscription vs. Perpetual Licenses
ZBrush and ZBrushCore Single-User Commercial licenses are available as either a perpetual license or a subscription.  All other licenses are only available as perpetual licenses.

Perpetual licenses never expire.  You pay a one-time cost for your license and own it from that point forward.  Purchases of perpetual licenses more than one year ago or after December 29, 2021 can only receive critical bug fix updates past ZBrush 2022.0.5.  (In other words, ZBrush 2022.0.5 is the final free upgrade, except for those people who were grandfathered under Pixologic's guarantee of one year of free upgrades.)  Feature upgrades will require the purchase of an upgrade license (pricing and frequency yet to be determined).  Perpetual licenses may be purchased directly from Maxon or from one of our authorized resellers.

Subscription licenses allow you to pay as you go, with plans that automatically rebill on either a monthly or annual basis. They may only be purchased from the ZBrush store.  While your subscription is active you will automatically receive upgrades to the newest version.  Subscriptions rebill automatically until canceled.  You may cancel your subscription at any time.  Should you cancel, you will continue to have access to ZBrush for the remainder of your current subscription but it will not rebill.  There are no refunds for subscriptions.

You can switch from a subscription to a perpetual license at any time, simply by purchasing a perpetual license from our online store or from one of our resellers.  After purchasing a perpetual license you will need to deactivate your software and then reactivate it using the perpetual serial number.  Be sure to also cancel your subscription in order to prevent it from rebilling.


ZBrushCoreMini - the spiritual successor to Sculptris - is unique in that it does not use a license key and does not activate.  It can simply be installed on any computer where you wish to use it.

  • Free for non-commercial use.  This includes hobbyist and academic use.
  • There is no commercial license option for ZBrushCoreMini.  To use ZBrush software for profit you must purchase a ZBrushCore or ZBrush license.

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  1. Matthew Yetter

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