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I'm fairly new to blender (2.8), been using it for just about a month now.

How do you combine a bunch of different objects (e.g. light, mesh, etc) to act as one object? That is so I can easily duplicate and edit the resulting composite object.

I've already checked collections, appears to be not I need. Already did some googling but I guess I'm in the wrong rabbit hole.

Thanks!

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You can't make objects of different types into a single object, but you can make a group of "siblings" (children of an Empty) and duplicate them all together. This method doesn't create instances but whole new objects: they will still be editable individually (at the cost of being all simultaneously in memory).

  1. Add an Empty

    enter image description here

  2. Select all the objects and then Shift+Select the Empty. Do CtrlP and Set Parent to Object

    enter image description here

  3. Duplicate the bunch (ShiftD) and Move (or rotate, or scale) the new Empty. Indeed, the duplication is smart enough to transfer the "Parent" relation to the new Empty

    enter image description here

You can select a group (for example if you need to delete it or duplicate further) by selecting the Empty, then doing Select > Select More/Less > Extend Child or just Shift]

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Nicola Sap proposed a solution (parent all your object to an empty), note that if you use altD instead of shiftD, your object copies will be linked, meaning if you change one object it will affect its copies.

Another solution could be Collection Instance:

Put your objects in the same collection (let say Collection1), then create an instance of this collection with ShiftA > Collection Instance > Collection1. You can move, rotate or scale the instance, but only the original objects will be editable.

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  • $\begingroup$ Collection Instance does solve my current problem. So thanks. To expand the solution, the instance/Duplicate can be made into real objects if you so desire by ctrl A > Make Duplicates Real $\endgroup$ – TheNoob27 Dec 27 '18 at 19:06

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