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Adobe launches Dimension CC

Adobe has released Dimension CC, a new V-Ray powered application for rendering and compositing 3D assets into 2D images, aimed at “graphic designers, not 3D experts”.

Dimension CC is intended to enable graphic designers with little to no experience with conventional 3D software to incorporate 3D elements into their work.

Users can import 3D models in OBJ format, then assign materials and textures via a drag-and-drop workflow. Materials are stored internally in Nvidia’s MDL format, also supported in an increasing number of DCC tools.

The software is also designed to work with Capture CC, Adobe’s mobile application for – among other things – generating physically based materials from images captured on a phone or other mobile device.

Lighting is image-based, with the option to import HDRIs in HDR, EXR or IBL format, then adjust the results in the interactive real-time preview – which uses the same core tech as V-Ray – using slider-based controls.

The HDRI can also be used as a background image for the scene, with Dimension CC automatically setting the lighting, camera properties and perspective of the scene to match the source image.

Reflections and shadows can be adjusted by editing the properties of the ground plane.

When the scene is complete, renders and composites can be exported as multi-layer PSD files for adjustment in Photoshop, or any other image-editing application that supports the file format.

The software comes with a free starter library of models, materials and lights, and is integrated with Adobe Stock, Adobe’s online library of commercial stock assets.

Pricing and availability
Dimension CC is available for Windows 10 and Mac OS X 10.10+. You need a reasonably powerful workstation: Adobe recommends 16GB of RAM and a GeForce GTX 970 GPU or equivalent non-Nvidia card.

Like all of Adobe’s Creative Cloud tools, it is available rental-only, with an annual subscription costing $19.99/month for single applications or $49.99/month for all of Adobe’s creative software

Read more about Dimension CC on Adobe’s blog

Read a full list of features in Dimension CC

The Foundry CARA VR 1.0v2 is now available

This release includes bug fixes and feature improvements for CARA VR for NUKE.

CARA VR ™—the virtual reality plug-in toolset for NUKE—helps you to create incredible live-action virtual reality content. With a specialized toolset that includes headset review, CARA VR dramatically speeds up the challenging and often tedious process of stitching and compositing 360° video footage, so you have more time to focus on creating incredible immersive experiences.

What’s new in CARA VR 1.0v2?

  • Caching improvements to reduce memory usage
  • New support for multi-view inputs in Camera Solver allowing you to define left and right views for all inputs when working with stereoscopic footage
  • New blending options added in the Blender and Stitching nodes to improve stitch results
  • Support for HMD review in all NUKE 10 releases including NUKE 10.0v3 and 10.0v4
  • And more

For full details of updates and improvements, see the release notes.

Purchase CARA VR

If you have a current license for CARA VR 1.0 you can download CARA VR 1.0v2 today.

Download CARA VR 1.0v2

THE FOUNDRY MODO 902 IS HERE

CREATE SOMETHING NEW

MODO is a complete solution for design exploration, game content creation, character animation, and the production of high-quality advertising images. Created with artistic workflows in mind, MODO puts the fun back into digital content creation and design. Artists and designers are free to explore and focus on creative efforts that maximize quality output in less time.

MODO 902 adds a cohesive new solution for digital matte painting and virtual camera creation to the wealth of features delivered in MODO 901. In a world where the lines between what’s real and what’s digital are increasingly blurred, the focused new toolset makes it easy to match the authentic with the synthetic—so you can create everything from set extensions to product placement shots in less time.

Key new features in MODO 902

Camera matching

The new Camera Matcher provides an intuitive and visual method to quickly and easily match a camera’s position, rotation and focal length to a background image. Simply indicate axes on screen by drawing them on, and optionally specify a known measurement. You can also use the system to estimate any lens distortion in the original camera, and apply that to the virtual camera, for an even more seamless match. In addition, you can easily set the camera’s resolution to match a projected image. And if your background photo contains EXIF lens information, MODO can apply those settings to your camera with a single click.

Projection Texture and Shader

Now a fully integrated feature of MODO 901, MeshFusion MODO 902 offers two methods to streamline the texture projection workflow. The Projection Texture can be used to project an image into a given texture channel—such as diffuse color or stencil—and works both within nodal shading networks and in the shader tree. The Projection Shader reproduces the exact pixels of the projected image, overwriting any lighting or shading that exists within the 3D scene, so that you can use the lights and shadows from the original real-world environment.
Projection Texture and Shader

Projection Ink

Projection Ink offers an intuitive and controllable method to bake projected textures onto UV-mapped geometry using the integrated brush-based toolset. With a camera and a backdrop image set up, you can paint textures from the image into the scene as if they were projected from the camera. If you have multiple cameras set up covering different angles, you can easily blend the projected images to form a seamless texture that stands up to scrutiny from multiple viewpoints.

Camera Plane modifier

With the new Camera Plane modifier, you can create an image-mapped plane from a selected image with a single click, and MODO will automatically adjust its size, position and rotation so that it always fills the screen perfectly as you change its depth. This makes it easy to set up a layered stack of foreground, midground and background images (potentially with 3D geometry between)—perfect for VFX set extensions or multi-plane animations. There’s also an option to automatically create foreground and background plates, so creating masks, watermarks and in-camera composites is a breeze.

Physical Sun settings from image metadata

MODO 902 offers a clever trick to help you seamlessly integrate your photography with digitally created elements: if your photo contains GPS location, compass direction and time of day information, you can use it to set the location, orientation and time of MODO’s internal Physical Sun model to match—so your photographed and virtual shadows will align with a single click of a button.

Screen Overlay enhancements

New Screen Overlays include support for more non-standard camera configurations using Overscan, Offset, and so on; support for using the image size instead of the film back for the safe area; and guides to help you with the staging and composition of your shots including golden ratios and horizon lines.

Learn More

Purchase MODO

Save 50% on upgrades to NUKEX and NUKE STUDIO!

Get more NUKE for less, with a special opportunity to upgrade your NUKE or NUKEX seat for a massive 50% off the regular price. Until the end of the year, you can take advantage of these incredible deals:

There’s so much to gain by upgrading. NUKEX extends your core NUKE functionality with an out-of-the-box toolkit of exclusive features, reducing the need to roundtrip to other applications. NUKEX has it all built right in: camera tracker, model builder, particle system and much more.

Step right up to NUKE STUDIO, and you’ll get the full potential of a powerful node-based VFX, editorial and finishing studio in one cohesive solution. Whether you’re working as an individual artist or as part of a collaborative team, NUKE STUDIO helps you successfully complete rapid-turnaround projects like never before.
Plus, with valid maintenance, both NUKEX and NUKE STUDIO get you two NUKE Assist seats that offer a core set of nodes for performing the everyday tasks of paint, roto, 2D and planar tracking.

Terms and conditions

  • Offer closes 31 December 2015
  • Discount applies to upgrades only—not valid on new seats
  • Offer not applicable to upgrades to PRODUCTION COLLECTIVE from NUKE, NUKEX or NUKE STUDIO
  • Discount does not apply to maintenance

Read more here:

AMD unveils FireRender for 3ds Max

AMD has unveiled the 3ds Max version of FireRender, its OpenCL-based GPU renderer, at Siggraph 2015.

First demoed at Siggraph 2014 in its original Maya integration, the new 3ds Max edition has been developed in collaboration with Corona Renderer developer Render Legion.

Functionality and system requirements
FireRender is an unbiased path tracing renderer, and includes a native physically based material system.

Unlike the majority of GPU-accelerated engines currently on the market, it’s based on OpenCL so – although intended for use with AMD’s FirePro workstation GPUs – it should work with any card that supports OpenCL 1.2.

FireRender also provides a CPU backend, so the renderer can run on any combination of CPUs and GPUs.

As well as Max’s native materials, FireRender 3ds Max plugin supports Corona Renderer materials out of the box, as well as V-Ray materials via Corona’s material converter.

As far as we can see, there isn’t any information about the renderer on AMD’s website yet, but the company has provided us with the following feature list:

  • High-level rendering API (C-style)
  • Unbiased/biased path-tracing
  • State-of-the-art sampling algorithms
  • Multiple importance sampling
  • Many lights support
  • Adaptive rendering
  • Physically based materials
  • Layered material support
  • Standard uber-material
  • Volumetrics
  • Physically based camera
  • Lens and sensor simulation
  • Physical bokeh
  • Motion blur
  • Analytic and physical lights
  • Point, directional, spot
  • Area lights
  • Image-based lighting with IS
  • IES profiles support
  • Incandescent material
  • Physical skylight
  • Post-processing filters
  • Numerous image reconstruction
  • Tonemapping
  • Based on open technologies (OpenCL, OpenGL, OpenImageIO, OpenVDB)

Pricing and availabiliy
FireRender for 3ds Max supports 3ds Max 2014 and above. AMD tells us that it will be made available for download from the company’s developer website next week.

In addition, FireRender’s SDK provides a C++ library designed to enable developers to integrate the engine into other DCC applications.

Visit AMD’s developer website

Chaos Group V-Ray for NUKE Now Available!

V-Ray for NUKE’s new approach to lighting and compositing integrates production-quality ray traced rendering into NUKE and NUKEX. The best news, you can get it today!

V-Ray for NUKE helps compositors and studios be more efficient and have more creative control. Taking advantage of V-Ray’s lighting, shading, and rendering tools inside of NUKE’s node-based workflow will make it easier to finish shots faster.

V-RAY FOR NUKE FEATURES

Integration

  • Full integration into NUKE’s native node-based workflow

Rendering

  • Multithreaded CPU rendering
  • Highly optimized, adaptive ray tracing
  • Precise path traced global illumination

Render elements

  • 36 beauty, matte, and utility render elements

Geometry

  • NUKE ReadGeo – Alembic, FBX, & OBJ
  • V-Ray proxy objects – Alembic & vrmesh
  • V-Ray scene files – vrscene
  • Geometry loads at render time

Lights

  • HDR image-based environment lights
  • Rectangular & spherical area lights
  • Mesh lights
  • Photometric IES lights
  • Ambient light
  • NUKE lights – Light, Direct, Point, and Spot nodes

Cameras

  • NUKE projection cameras – Project3D node
  • Depth of field
  • 3d motion blur
  • Spherical, cylindrical, cube & fish eye camera types

Materials

  • Physically-based materials
  • Multi-layered materials
  • Subsurface scattering & skin material
  • Car paint material
  • Material overrides
  • NUKE shaders – Diffuse, Emission, Displacement, UVTILE

Textures

  • Memory efficient tiled EXR and TX files
  • Displacement & subdivision
  • Dirt & occlusion
  • Fresnel
  • Ptex
  • Utility & override textures

Read more on V-Ray Website

V-Ray showreel 2015

Chaos Group has released its 2015 V-Ray reel.

Unlike previous years, the work isn’t divided up into separate reels for different market sectors, so it runs the gamut from Guardians of the Galaxy to game cinematics.

Outside of Method Studios’ work on GoG, the most showstopping feature effects work comes from Scanline VFX, including the parting of the Red Sea sequence from Exodus: Gods and Kings.

However, there’s also nice VFX from the likes of Zoic Studios, Unit Image, and the up-and-coming Ixor.

Blur Studio contributes some typically excellent games work; and there are an interesting selection of arch viz and indie projects, including David Levy’s PLUG.

Visit the V-Ray website

  • Showcasing the RealFlow 2015 new features and improvements.

Next Limit RealFlow 2015 is now available

JULY 30, 2015 (Madrid, Spain) – Next Limit Technologies announces the official launch of RealFlow 2015, an out-of-the-box fluid and dynamics simulation software for 3D visual effects. This ninth edition includes all new features and updates, allowing users to achieve quality results faster than ever before; and with the addition of new control tools, users are now in total command of their 3D workflows.

Some key highlights in RealFlow 2015 include:

  • An exceptional increase in the quality of simulations. All new DYVERSO solvers and the addition of GPU acceleration not only speed up simulations, but allow artists to build smooth layered meshes, making resulting simulations more realistic than ever.
  • A new direct-to-render feature within the program. This option allows users to import their scene, add fluids, and render them out directly in RealFlow using the most advanced physically-based render engine, Maxwell Render™.
  • New tools that give users complete control over their simulations. An enhanced User Interface, new splines nodes, text tools, daemons falloff, crown daemon, and spreadsheets add an extra level of controllability to RealFlow simulations allowing users to achieve the design they want, the way they want it.
  • A powerful speed-up compared to previous versions. The combination of DYVERSO solvers and rapid OpenVDB meshing allows users to achieve outstanding results in a fraction of the time, making your simulation and meshing times up to 10x faster.

Pricing and availability
RealFlow 2015 is available for 64-bit Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. Licence packs including one floating and one node-locked licence, plus a year’s maintenance and a one-year licence of Maxwell Render.

Buy RealFlow 2015 on Medialogic Online Store

Read more about the new features in RealFlow 2015 on Next Limit’s website

V-Ray 3.1 for Maya now available

Chaos Group have announce the immediate availability of V-Ray 3.1 for Maya. V-Ray 3.1 for Maya contains over 100 new and modified features, including Maya 2016 compatibility, numerous V-Ray RT GPU enhancements and two VR cameras.

NEW FEATURES:

Maya 2016 support

  • Support for new Hypershade Node Editor, Material Viewer, and Lookdev view
  • Enhanced Bifrost support – including rendering liquids as isosurfaces without meshing

New – VR cameras

  • Support for 6×1 cube maps and spherical stereo images
  • Shade Map for optimized stereoscopic rendering

New – V-Ray RT GPU Features

  • Hair & fur
  • Subsurface scattering
  • Displacement & subdivision surfaces
  • Light Cache GI
  • Anisotropic highlights
  • UDIM textures
  • Texture baking
  • QMC sampling on NVIDIA CUDA devices

Proxy Object improvements

  • Identical proxy objects are now automatically instanced
  • Improved viewport previews with mesh simplification options
  • Import multiple proxy objects at once
  • Support for hair and particle instances
  • Support for instancing Ogawa Alembic files
  • Mesh viewer utility – to view proxy objects and Alembic files, including subdivision surfaces, particles, and hair

Workflow & User Interface

  • Quick settings
  • Light Lister
  • Tooltips
  • Updated default render settings

Geometry

  • Faster rendering of dynamic meshes, proxy objects, and instances
  • Faster rendering of hair and fur
  • Intel Embree acceleration for hair and fur
  • VRayClipper – for cutaways and sections

Lights

  • Light meter – new helper object for lighting analysis

Global Illumination

  • Updated Light Cache algorithm removes light leaks and improves animation

Volume rendering

  • Probabilistic shading for faster volume rendering

Click Here to View the Full Press Release