Viewport rotation

Hi everyone. I’m a long time 3DS Max user, and I’ve recently been trying to learn Blender also. I’ve only just begun with tutorials that introduce the interface, so far I’m impressed with the usefulness of the shortcut keys to speed up workflow.

There is one thing that is bugging me quite a bit though, and that’s viewport rotation in the perspective view. By holding the middle mouse button you can rotate the view, which would seem straightforward enough, only the way the view rotates seems very unusual. Normally (in other 3D apps I’ve used, as well as in every 3D video game ever), when rotating a 3D camera, the view would orbit around the center point, and the camera’s horizontal plane would stay level with the horizon of the world. This doesn’t happen in Blender, the mouse viewport rotation is completely free by default and is not locked to the horizontal plane at all. This makes rotating the view very disorientating and hard to manage.

There are the keyboard shortcuts for rotation on the number pad, which rotate in the logical way (up,down,left,right without tilting from side to side), if I could get the middle mouse button rotation to act in the same way, I would be very happy.

I know it seems like a lot of fuss about nothing, “if the keyboard shortcuts work fine, then why not use them instead?”, to me it’s an issue of ease of workflow, I work almost exclusively in the perspective viewport and I need to rotate the view constantly.

Go to the user preferences and change form Trackpad to Turntable rotation (different apps usually have one or the other as a default rotation method). Trackpad can be a better method with something like sculpting when you need to rotate around you object in a more complex way.You can also select rotate around selected as well.

Perfect, thanks for the help!