RealFlow | Maya – Exclusive BETA Available

Exciting news for Maya users – a fully-integrated RealFlow | Maya plugin is on it’s way. Top quality fluid sims directly inside Maya for a time-saving easier workflow.

Following the well-received RealFlow | Cinema 4D, Next Limit decided to provide a similar solution for other 3D applications commonly used with RealFlow. This brand new plugin for Maya lets you work solely inside the 3D platform with no need to import or export.

It is compatible with Maya 2017-2018, and provides integration with native Maya tools such as nParticles and MEL. You can simulate all Dyverso particles and have the majority of RealFlow Daemons available to achieve high-end simulations. A complete feature comparison will be available upon release.

Try it today with the FREE Beta!
RealFlow customers can already access the beta version via the Customer Portal, and new users can sign up here.

Please note that this is a temporary license, which will be available for use until release. Your feedback is important and will help Next Limit make RealFlow | Maya better for the official release and future updates.

Webinar: An Introduction to creating Digital Terrain Models with Allplan Engineering

This webinar will introduce how you can easily create digital terrain models with Allplan Engineering to enable 3D design and visualisation of projects, including views, earthworks and calculations. Allplan Engineering will help you raise your level during the design stage to unlock greater project efficiencies.

After this webinar you will understand:

  • The methods used to create a DTM in Allplan;
  • How to create views and sections;
  • Integration with other design disciplines.

Register Now

Wednesday 16th May
12.30pm (UK time)

Presenter: Ralph Pullinger

KeyShot 7.3 Update

KeyShot 7.3 has been released and is now available for download – existing users will receive an update notification in the software at startup. Full release notes below:

Version: 7.3.37
Release Date: 4/5/18

New Features

Major:

  • KeyShot Viewer – A free, touch-enabled, desktop application for Mac and Windows that enables KeyShot scenes to be securely shared with anyone for interactive viewing, presentation, and configuration. Download here.
  • “Add Multi-Material” to Queue (KeyShot Pro) – In the Queue tab of the Render dialog there is a new button for Add Multi-Material that will allow you to select a Multi-Material in your scene and have each sub-material rendered out. This function will add a single job to the Render Queue that contains all sub-materials.

Minor:

  • Added Save for KeyShot Viewer under File menu with option to add password protection and watermarking.

Improvements

Major:

  • SOLIDWORKS 2018 direct import support.
  • Sketchup 2018 direct import support.
  • NX12 direct import support.

Minor:

  • Model Variations area is hidden in Presentation Mode if there is only one variation.
  • Improved setup time for scenes with Rounded Edges.
  • Render Materials automatically in Configurator Wizard.
  • Added Turntable animations to top-level models in the Scene Tree.
  • Updated Scripting to Python 3.6.4
  • Metadata now outputs via Network Rendering for Still Images.

Noteworthy Bug Fixes

  • Fixed crash that occurred after renaming Model Set and opening the Configurator Wizard.
  • Fixed crash when saving package related to texture naming.
  • Fixed Plugin connection issue with “Just for me” installations.
  • Files saved with Ground Shadows disabled will now show Ground Shadows when enabled after saving and reopening.
  • Fixed Ground Shadow visibility error that could occur when toggling between Studios.
  • Fixed double buttons in scripting console.
  • Fixed Environment thumbnail creation when saving to Library.
  • Fixed issue in which Labels would not appear in Clown Pass or Labels Pass when “Apply Bump to Labels” is enabled for that Label.
  • Render Passes and Render Layers are now output correctly for KeyShotXR.
  • Fixed issue where real-time view could be off-center when opened on mac.
  • Fixed quality issue with Clown and Labels pass when black and white image was used to define opacity of a label.

Known Issues

  • When sending jobs from KeyShot 6 to KeyShot 7 Network Rendering or opening KeyShot 6 scenes in KeyShot 7 there may be a difference in environment lighting that would be visible on materials with Roughness applied due to a half pixel shift which has now made KeyShot 7 Environments more accurate in appearance.
  • Ground Shadows become visible when exiting Performance Mode when Ground Shadows are disabled in the Environment tab.
  • Rendering very high resolution images with Render Passes, Bloom, Chromatic Abberation or Vignetting may cause Network Rendering Master to stall if there is insufficient memory.
  • Rendering high resolution images with Bloom, Chromatic Abberation or Vignetting may cause visual artifacts when rendered locally and via Network Rendering.
  • Rounded Edges are lost after Update Geometry.
  • Possible banding with Interior Mode when rendered via Network Rendering. Lower resolution images will have a higher banding visibility.
  • When rendering scenes in KeyShot 6 via KeyShot 7 Network Rendering (from a mac client) the correct environment file may not be sent causing the lighting to appear different in the output.
  • Parts/sub-groups that are locked and in a shown state do not maintain a shown state when toggling visibility of their parent group.

Webinar: Introduction to Realflow | Cinema 4D 2.5 Follow Up

Thank you to everyone that joined the Introduction to RealFlow | Cinema 4D 2.5 webinar. If you missed it or would like to watch the recording back, you can find this below.

New features include:

  • Mesher vertex map creation has been revamped to allow the possibility to customise them using gradients.
  • New vertex maps “Weights” to shade mixing fluids. It also lets you add different weights for the same fluid emitters.
  • New vertex maps, “Age” and “Vorticity”, for meshes.
  • Compatibility with the TurbulenceFD Emitter tag to use RealFlow particles for TurbulenceFD emission.
    Make sure to update TurbulenceFD to version v1.0 Rev 1435
  • The Thinking Particles workflow has been greatly improved, letting the used decide which TP groups should be synchronised with RealFlow fluids.
  • New “Visualizer” node. Used to display the daemon forces.
  • New cache “Offset” parameters to change the frame to be loaded for every cached node.
  • Image Emitter displays the texture in the viewport and accepts animated textures.
  • New “Auto Mesh Normals” parameter for the Mesher to switch between the mesher normals (accurate) or geometry normals (customisable).
  • Falloff for DSpline.
  • Age and Vorticity can be used to colour particles in the viewport in addition to the existing Velocity.
  • New “Texture Sampling Resolution” parameter in RealFlow preferences.

Maxwell | Modo & Maxwell | Solidworks Discontinued

Next Limit have announced that the Maxwell | Solidworks and Maxwell | MODO integration will be discontinued due to decreasing demand for the plugin.

There are no plans for further development for:

  • Maxwell | Solidworksversion 4.2.1 for Maxwell 4.2.0.3
  • Maxwell | MODOversion 4.1.2 for Maxwell 4.1.1.1

What to do now?

There are 3 options available:

  1. Keep using  Maxwell | Solidworks or Maxwell | MODO plugin with all compatible versions
  2.  FREE crossgrade to Maxwell | Studio
  3.  FREE crossgrade to another integration

FREE crossgrades will be available via the Next Limit Portal until the end of 2018.

3D Art Challenge – Survival Car

3D art challenge for the best car in Post-Apocalyptic style. You can choose any related topic from zombie survival vehicles to the Mad Max universe – there is no limit to your creative ideas. Participation in the contest is open to all comers, whose works comply with the rules.

Everything is as usual: you have to create a car 3d model, put it into 3D environment and make a beautiful render. Primarily the judges will pay attention to the visual component of your works, but this is not all that you need to win. The idea of the work is also very important, as well as its presentation, complicacy (both of the model and of the scene) and quality of performance.

The contest is supported by the best companies of the 3D world and so the prizes for the first places look amazing. Also, everyone has an opportunity to receive an additional prizes.

Renderers supporting the competition include KeyShot, Maxwell Render and Corona.

Your work can be submitted from March 13th to May 29th 2018 – submissions end at 15:00 (GMT)

Further information on the competition and it’s prizes can be found here.


Rules

General rules:

  • Create a 3D model of any vehicle (car, truck, airplane, boat etc) in Post-Apocalyptic style, add 3D environment (you can create more than one vehicle in the scene), textures. Then create a beautiful 3D rendering of it (or them). Think creative.
  • Environment should be made in 3D; the use of HDRi for sky and some parts of landscape is premitted.
  • The work must not have been previously published anywhere, neither online or offline (including models with ready-made textures or easily recognisable scenes).
  • To win the competition the quality and idea of the work are important. You need to think about the story behind the image. Make sure everything supports your message – composition, lighting, colours etc. Make a greater emotional impact.
  • You can submit only one work.
  • You are free to make WIP on any website, including the forum, either before or after you submit the work and it’s published in the gallery.
  • Please provide your work with a short story.
  • Add the link to the competition or name of the competition in one of the image corners on your own (so that you can control the quality of the saved work).
  • Attach one wireframe or clay render at your choice to your work – we will place it below your work.

Demands for your render:

  • The render should be at least 1000 pixels wide if the work is horizontal.
  • Render size should not exceed 2 mb.
  • Work can be in any style you like (low-poly, cartoon, futuristic etc), with using post production.
  • Renders with solid background (one colour: black, white etc, test renders, screenshots) and models laid on wallpapers will not be admitted to take part in the competition. As well as works with adult content.

 Other possibilities

  • The work can be updated during the competition if the author noticed a mistake or made use of community advice. The only condition – you can not change the idea of the work, or modify it drastically. Only reasonable changes allowed.
  • You can correct the description and the list of tools after the work was submitted – just get in touch.
  • After your work is published on the competition page, you are free to share your work on other websites.
  • You can see previous competitions here and “Hall of fame” here.

Webinar: An Introduction to Advanced Reinforcement Modelling with Allplan Engineering 2018

This webinar will introduce the advanced reinforcement modelling capabilities of Allplan Engineering that enables complex shapes to be reinforced to local codes. Allplan Engineering’s reinforcement tools will help you raise your level during the detailed design stage to unlock greater project design efficiencies over a 2D approach.

After this webinar you will understand:

  • The advantages of 3D modelling over 2D RC detailing;
  • Structure data to gain advantage for downstream coordination;
  • Rapidly reinforce any complex object.

Register Now

Wednesday 11th April
12:30 pm (UK Time)

Presenter: Ralph Pullinger

V-Ray for Rhino Now Compatible with Rhino 6!

The latest V-Ray for Rhino now supports Rhino 6.2 and above and Chaos have made some overall improvements to make your rendering workflow faster, smoother and more productive. Full release notes can be found below.

Get The Update

 

Rhino 6 Compatibility


  • V-Ray is now fully compatible with Rhinoceros 6
  • Implemented a minimum host application version requirement during installation. V-Ray for Rhinoceros 6 is built to run on the official Rhino 6.2 version or later. This is now accounted for in the installer
  • Updated V-Ray Interactive viewport mode. Selections can now be viewed on top of the rendered image

Improvements


Optimisations & Workflow

  • Stereo camera mode is now supported in Interactive Rendering mode
  • Stereo images can now be rendered by the GPU(Hybrid) engine in both production and interactive modes
  • V-Ray Clipper Plane size can now be controlled on creation
  • Rhino Clipping Planes are now automatically converted to V-Ray Clippers on creation. This way adding a Clipping Plane to the scene will cut the geometry in the viewport giving you the same result when rendered
  • The Rhino UV Editor geometry is no longer visible in the rendered image
  • Rhino-style colour picker is now used when changing light colour from the Light Properties panel or the Rhino Lights list
  • Right-click menu has been implemented for sub-materials (child materials) in a shading network – Cut, Copy or Paste as Instance any child material to another material input slot. Drag-dropping can also be utilised
  • Dome Light rotation can now be controlled by moving the light gyzmo control vertices/points. The orientation of the dome will change accordingly
  • VRScene animation playback can now be controlled. The Offset, Playback Type, Speed, Start and Length options can now be manipulated when necessary
  • Implemented two new modes for calculating the camera focus point. The focus distance can now be determined based on the distance between the scene camera position and target or between the camera position and a fixed point in 3D space. This way the focus can dynamically change between scenes during batch rendering
  • Implemented Multi Matte render element. It works together with the V-Ray Object ID assignments in the scene. The number of unique IDs assigned determines the number of Multi Matte elements that will be created at render time (one element for every set of three IDs). Each element can store three (R, G, B) masks. The new mask channel is supported by the GPU (Hybrid) engine
  • Enabling Interactive rendering mode no longer switches the progressive image sampling toggle. Changing Bucket Production Rendering to Interactive and back no longer requires additional steps
  • Implemented Use Camera path option (for the Irradiance Map and Light Cache engines). The option becomes visible once Animation is enabled. It enables a single step workflow for saving a global illumination cache for the entire camera path. Utilising it can significantly speed up the process of rendering camera fly-through setups
  • The Water texture can now be used as bump or displacement map for animated waves with the help of the new Movement Rate parameter. It speeds up or slows down the movement of the wave
  • Implemented Replace Material functionality in the Asset Editor’s material list. A material can be selected and used as a replacement. A second material can then be replaced with the first one automatically changing the scene shader assigned. The Copy and Paste actions have been removed due to their potential to cause discrepancies and are no longer needed thanks to the replacement functionality
  • Materials from the Library can now be applied directly to the selected scene objects by Right-click / Apply to Selection
  • Rendering animations without an output image file path specified is now possible
  • Recording animations with V-Ray now utilises the Rhino progress bar
  • Recording Sun Study animations no longer triggers a viewport animation preview
  • Spotlight Cone and Penumbra Angles are now specified in degrees instead of radians
  • The way in which animation is internally handled has been changed. Animated VRScenes exported from Maya or 3ds Max will now move with a predictable rate. This change also resolves a number of Motion Blur related issues
  • The option to display specific viewport textures for a Blend, Wrapper, Toon, Hair, Override and Two Sided materials has been re-introduced
  • The V-Ray for Rhinoceros Windows Start Menu folder content has been revisited and reorganised (C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs\Chaos Group\V-Ray for Rhinoceros 5). There are now 2 separate folders – One for Rhino 5 and one for Rhino 6

User Interface

  • The Batch Render V-Ray Compact toolbar icon has been moved to the top level. The Rendering sub-section no longer has to be expanded to give access to the tool
  • Camera settings have been reorganised
  • The V-Ray Object Properties section in Rhino now uses a V-Ray logo icon
  • Right-clicking on the Asset Editor toolbar icon now opens the File Path Editor
  • Right-clicking on the Edit V-Ray Material toolbar icon now converts the Rhino material of the selected object to a V-Ray shader
  • Exposure toggle has been added to the Camera parameters
  • Implemented Camera Focus Source drop-down menu
  • Animation rollout with playback options added to the VRScene parameters
  • Enabling Interactive Rendering mode now automatically hides the Progressive toggle. The Interactive mode always renders progressively, so the option is not needed
  • The Irradiance Map, Light Cache and Caustics Disc Caching options have been re-designed and simplified
  • Use Camera Path checkbox has been added to both Irradiance Map and Light cache
  • The VRayBRDF material layer Environment Override roll-out has been rearranged and simplified
  • The Layered Material / Material Options / Raytrace Properties section has been added. Cast Shadows and Only in Secondary options (previously available in V-Ray 2) have been exposed
  • The Camera Stereo toggle can no longer be used while Interactive Rendering is on
  • The Animation rollout is now located outside of the Render Output rollout (top-level) for easier access
  • The Render Interactive (and its Stop version) Asset Editor icons have been re-designed so that the teapot image position matches the Render Production one

Batch Render Tool

  • The Batch Render window functionality and visual style have been improved
  • Tree-style view has been implemented. The scene view lists can be collapsed or expanded at will
  • Loading a project now automatically lists all the standard as well as named views. Whether a view is going to be rendered can then be determined by its checkbox state
  • Drag-dropping a .3dm file directly in the Batch list is now supported
  • Pre-recorded V-Ray animations can now be rendered using the Batch Render UI. The animation recording will be listed as a view with a unique icon so that it can be easily identified. In case no recording is available V-Ray will automatically skip this step
  • Icons have been added to the view list of the Batch Render UI
  • Override Output Path option added to the Batch settings. Save all the output image files to one predefined location on disk. Disable the option to save the output files at each source’s  .3dm file location
  • Render, Export VRScene, Render and Export options have been added to the Batch settings. Easily choose between only rendering the views, only exporting them to individual vrscenes or do both at the same time
  • Implemented Refresh button. Changes made to files already listed, can be easily updated before the Batch job starts
  • The V-Ray Batch Render window buttons now use icons instead of text. This makes the window more compact allowing it to remain usable even when it’s width has been decreased
  • The current file is no longer handled as a special case and can be added (once saved) to the list by – Right-click / Add Current Model
  • Implemented Open Output Image right-click menu command – Opens the successfully rendered image with the default OS image viewer
  • Implemented Open Output Folder right-click menu command – Opens the folder in which the selected image has been saved in Explorer

Grasshopper

  • The way V-Ray for Grasshopper components are installed has changed. V-Ray for Grasshopper in Rhino 5 and 6 now reside in separate locations and will not cause any conflicts on startup and load
  • All the legacy V-Ray components (pre V-Ray 3.6) are no longer supported
  • Implemented V-Ray Material Preset. Quickly build shaders using a colour and a set of Presets: Generic, Plastic, Paint, Metal, Glass. Changing from one preset to another will preserve the base material colour selected
  • The V-Ray Material Preset and the V-Ray Material Simple shaders can be saved as .vrmat files for sharing or further edits in the Asset Editor

Improvements & Bug Fixes


  • VRScenes no longer get misplaced when rendered by V-Ray Swarm render nodes
  • The Interactive Rendering process no longer stops once an image file is connected to an Environment maps slot
  • Changes to light textures during Interactive Rendering now cause correct and timely updates
  • Rhino no longer crashes when the Anti Aliasing filter is disabled during Interactive Rendering
  • Resolved issues with the V-Ray Animation controls and setup on language-localised operating systems
  • A number of issues with V-Ray Fur textures and their texture placement have been resolved
  • Copy and pasting colours from one Gradient map slot to another now works correctly
  • The Render Output / Save Image / File Path no longer gets auto-resolved on scene load or render. This prevents already rendered images located in sub-folders, relative to the 3dm file, to get incorrectly overridden
  • Using V-Ray together with the VisualARQ plugin no longer causes issues
  • A number of issues with texture viewport representation and tiling have been resolved
  • The Environment Fog light selection list now works in a more reliable way
  • A number of Installer/Uninstaller issues have been resolved
  • Resolved issues with converting a Rhino material to a V-Ray shader
  • The Material Conflict window no longer stops appearing after Apply All has been selected the first time
  • V-Ray no longer causes Rhino to crash on exit. This issue only affected small number of cases and should no longer occur
  • A number of light instancing issues have been resolved
  • Textures with Environment placement can now be properly manipulated using their 2d Transformation controls
  • Dome light’s rendered Hemisphere object now rotates together with the viewport gyzmo when the Use Transform option is enabled

ZBrush 2018

ZBrush is advancing yet again with the release of ZBrush 2018 – another free upgrade for all existing ZBrush customers!

Sculptris Pro Mode

This major new feature is an enhanced version of the dynamic tessellation system from our popular Sculptris application. It enables the artist to ignore the constraints of polygon distribution and simply sculpt! Sculptris Pro will dynamically add (tesselate) and remove (decimate) polygons wherever and whenever it’s needed. It actually does this during your brush stroke in a real-time process called Tessimation. This frees you to focus entirely on the look you’re trying to achieve.

Sculptris Pro is the perfect tool for concept artists and creative users who simply want to get an idea formed without worry about things like polygon distribution. It is also ideal for anyone using CAD, point cloud and other imported models without having to first retopologize the model or switch to DynaMesh.

It is also perfect for refining a model after Live Boolean has been used, where variation in polygon density and triangulation can be a challenge with traditional methods. Additionally, it allows 3D printing users to edit models which have already been optimised before being imported back into ZBrush for quick edits.

Sculptris Pro is a mode that can be enabled whenever you want and is compatible with the majority of the hundreds of sculpting brushes that ZBrush is famous for.

Deformers Extended

ZBrush 4R8 introduced the Gizmo 3D manipulator system which included utilities such as FFD Box, Multislice and several powerful Deformers. In ZBrush 2018, Pixologic are increasing this to a total of 27 deformers. Each deformer has a unique feature set to allow quick shape alterations that would not be possible through brush strokes.

Of special note is the new Project Primitive deformer. This gives the ability to use multiple primitives to reshape a mesh, cut into a surface, build up from another mesh and much more. Not only does Project Primitive offer a new, unique way to blend multiple pieces of geometry together it also empowers you to take something as simple as a sphere and turn it into a rocket ship, automobile, plane, human bust, or nearly anything else you might imagine.

PolyGroupIt

This is an entirely new way to create the polygon groupings that are so essential to a smooth ZBrush workflow. PolyGroup It accurately evaluates the surface of a model in real-time, generating intelligent groupings with a single button click. Creating PolyGroups has never been so easy! What’s more, with PolyGroup It you can add or delete, copy & paste, grow or shrink, create PolyGroups symmetrically and even use PolyPaint to trace out exactly what you want your PolyGroups to look like.

Other Additions

  • Elastic and Liquid options for Curve Mode.
  • Insert Meshes can now be rotated or smoothed along a curve.
  • Equidistant Mesh Duplication using the Gizmo 3D.
  • Remember Draw Size and Dynamic Mode for Brush options.
  • New PolyGroup by Normals option.
  • Increased output size for 3D Print Hub.
  • Snake Hook brushes for use with Sculptris Pro.
  • Option to save Startup Default Material.
  • Tessimate can also be used as a stand-alone feature, outside of Sculptris Pro.
  • QuickSaves can now be saved to any hard drive.
  • New Activation and License Management System, powered by our My Licenses web portal.
  • All licenses are now dual platform for both Windows and macOS.

Webinar: The Efficient KeyShot User – Lighting and Environments

Continuing with the Efficient KeyShot User series, special guest Esben Oxholm takes you through the tips and techniques to speed the process of setting up lighting and environments.

In this webinar:

  • Scene and Model Considerations
  • KeyShot Lighting Settings
  • Environments vs. Physical lighting
  • Working with HDRIs
  • Working with Physical lights
  • Bringing It All Together
  • Output tips
  • Q&A

Sign up quickly as space is limited!



Tuesday 27th March, 2018
6pm – 7pm BST