E-on software has released Vue Infinite 2015 and Vue xStream 2015, a significant new update to its professional environment-creation products.

The update adds a non-photorealistic renderer to the software, boosts performance and pipeline integration, and makes the UI more customisable.

Rendering improvements
The main new feature in Vue 2015 is the non-photorealistic renderer, which provides 40 preset NPR styles, such as paint, chalk and halftoning. Users can create custom effects by combining line and shading styles.

There is also a new displacement mapping engine, which should make it possible to generate high-amplitude displacement effects – for example, faulting in rock faces – and reduce render times.

Render performance has also been improved across the board, with e-on claiming that the software is now “up to 30% faster on a modern GPU” and that photometric rendering is up to twice as fast.

Scene previews should also launch quicker, and complete up to eight times as fast.

Other new rendering features include energy-conservative anti-aliasing, which smooths images but preserves highlight detail; support for double-sided materials; and if you use xStream, the option to generate AO passes.

Pipeline integration
Building on the 2014 release, pipeline integration options have been extended and the UI further overhauled.

New integration features include import and export of scenes, models and camera paths in Alembic format, and the option to exchange data with ZBrush via GoZ, in the same way as general-purpose 3D applications.

Rocks and baked HyperBlobs can be exported to “any standard 3D file format”; and real-world geographic data can be imported in DTED, SDTS/DDF, and GeoTIFF data formats, on top of the existing DEM import.

Users of the xStream edition also get the option to export materials using the Ptex format.

UI standardisation
Vue 2015 also goes some way towards standardising the software’s user interface, with the option to set interface controls and shortcuts to match “other popular 3D apps”.

The layout of the UI can now be customised, including by detaching panels to a second monitor, and the layout saved as a preset. Frequently used dialogs can be integrated into the interface itself, cutting back on pop-ups.

There is also a new content browser for searching, browsing and previewing large numbers of files.

Other new features in the 2015 releases include support for network rendering files over 4GB in size, and further improvements to the clouds and atmosphere functionality.

Read more about the new features in the Vue Infinite 2015

Read more about the additional new features in Vue xStream 2015