Orthographic Views, BIM Data and More in Enscape 2.7

Enscape

The latest version of Enscape has arrived, and the new features will enhance your design process through orthographic views, BIM data visibility, pre-built urban environments and over 250 more assets.

Existing user?
Update to Enscape 2.7

Create floor plans and cross-sections with ease using the new orthographic view in Enscape. Clearly communicate the scope and size of your designs while seamlessly switching between flat perspectives and side view section cuts. With just one click, you can create a 2D view from a 3D project.

NEW: Display BIM Data
© Enscape3d.com

With the new BIM mode, you can quickly access key model information such as material, dimensions, quantities and costings without ever leaving Enscape. Activate BIM mode and click any element inside Enscape to display all available BIM data.

There’s even over 250 assets ready to use to enrich your scenes such as lamps and buildings. With a wider choice than ever, you can easily add to the realism of your project and even place them into pre-made urban environments using the new collection of surrounding buildings.

As with all big releases, you’ll find improvements to existing features too. Enjoy batch rendering and reproducible renderings, plus improved clouds, atmospheric effects, area lights and shading of partially transparent surfaces.

Enscape is available now at CAD Software Direct. If you have any queries at all, please contact us on 01206 804984.

If you’re new to Enscape and would like to give it a try, contact us on contact@cadsoftwaredirect.com to request a free 14-day trial.

KeyShot Updated to Version 9.1

KeyShot 9.1

KeyShot 9.1 has been released, and this update continues Luxion’s core focus on flexibility and creative freedom by improving workflow speed, material control, and render output.

KeyShot 9.1 builds on previously introduced features, such as real-time GPU ray tracing, AI denoise, and RealClothTM technology and adds:

  • Unwrap UV to aid in the position and application of textures and labels
  • Name Templates to improve the filename options for render output workflow
  • Network Rendering with GPU support to scale up the rendering power to make use of all available networked graphics cards.

Unwrap UV enables KeyShot users to generate UV maps which allow textures or labels to be accurately wrapped on an object’s surface. Users can get a quick preview using Quick Unwrap, or define more complex positioning using the Advanced Unwrap tool.

Name Templates gives users control over file names of outputs by automatically generating custom file names for the scene, with custom naming options that include the Revision, Scene Name, Active Camera, Current Date, and more.

Network Rendering now supports the option to use all available networked GPUs to increase rendering speed. The updated KeyShot 9.1 Network Monitor shows the type of rendering nodes available on the network.

KeyShot 9.1 is available immediately to all current KeyShot 9 users.

If you would like to find out more about KeyShot, give us a call on 01206 804984 or email us on contact@cadsoftwaredirect.com

SketchUp 2020 – New Features and How to Get It.

SketchUp 2020

SketchUp 2020 has arrived! Trimble have been watching comments in the forums throughout the year, and discussing ideas during training events to make sure the latest version of SketchUp addresses everything that users want to see out of this new release.

We’ll take a look at what’s new in SketchUp and Layout down below, but first let’s take a look at how you can get your hands on it as an existing user.

If you read just one thing in this post, make it this:
Please ensure that any plugins and renderers you rely on are compatible with SketchUp 2020 before upgrading, and be aware that there is no support for OS X 10.12 (Sierra) any longer. You must use OS X 10.13 (High Sierra) or newer.

With that out of the way…

How Do I Get Started?

Annual Subscription Users
The great news for you is that you’re eligible and are ready to use SketchUp 2020 right away. Simply download the application here. When the application is installed, all you need to do is sign in with your existing credentials.

Classic / Perpetual Licence Users with Active Maintenance
If you have an active Maintenance & Support plan, you will be sent your new SketchUp Pro 2020 licence details within the next few days via email.

Not sure if your maintenance is active? Check here or email us on contact@cadsoftwaredirect.com where we’ll be happy to help.

Network Users
Licences are automatically upgraded to the newer version.

Your old license is marked as “On Hold” in Trimble’s licensing database, and the new license is marked as “Active.”

The SketchUp Pro 2019 network license will remain in the “On Hold” state until a computer is authorised with your new 2020 license information. When this happens, you will have access to both SketchUp Pro 2019 and 2020 for 60 days. After 60 days, you will only have access to SketchUp Pro 2020.

See more about network upgrades here >

So, What’s New in SketchUp?

Introducing a new Outliner
In an effort to increase model performance, you no longer have to create Layers upon Layers – you can manage and organise your model straight within Outliner. Use the eye icon to toggle between the major sections of your model, such as main floor plans and furniture.

New grips on bounding boxes
When you grab a point that is obscured in an object (such as a back corner or centre point) and start to move it, your object will automatically go transparent when something in your model interferes with the object you are moving. This works with both the Rotate tool and Move tool.

Better control of hidden objects
You’ll notice in your drop-down menu that hiding objects are separated from hiding geometry. This will give you the ability to better manage hidden geometry and hidden objects for an even easier modeling experience. For example, now you can hide objects that are nearby (like trees, bushes, or a building) while still being able to edit hidden edges in a landscape or smoothed surface!

Updates to your SketchUp dictionary
There are a few updates to the naming conventions used when talking about SketchUp. This isn’t going to change how you use SketchUp, but we want to make sure you’re up to date with how some things are going to be referred to.

Objects are now a collective term for: groups, components, and dynamic components. Layers are now referred to as “Tags”.

What About Layout?

More power to adjust model views
LayOut now understands a lot more about your SketchUp model and what you’ve overridden. This means you can safely change a style or camera angle directly in LayOut without accidentally losing your changes.

How do you know what’s different in your LayOut viewport versus your model? When you make changes in LayOut, parts of the menu bar will go dark grey, alerting you that you’ve made an override.

Keep in mind – just because you made some changes in LayOut, doesn’t mean you’re stuck with those. You can always re-sync your viewports back to your SketchUp model if needed.

Improved customisation of your drawings
You can now take your LayOut documents to the next level with different models and views. If you have one SketchUp model that exists across several viewports, you can now re-link just one of those viewports to another SketchUp model. Previously, you had to delete that viewport, insert a new SKP model, and reset all your scale settings and viewport sizing.

You also have the ability to toggle Tag visibility within your LayOut document. Now you don’t have to create extra scenes just for your LayOut files, which will save you a lot of time going back and forth between LayOut and SketchUp.

Buy SketchUp 2020 as a perpetual licence, or the SketchUp Subscription 12 month bundle from CAD Software Direct where it is available right now. Not sure if SketchUp is for you? Try SketchUp free for 30 days.

Opening Times and Christmas Deals

Christmas Deals

It’s been another strong year for 3D modeling and rendering. We’ve seen major releases in Vectorworks 2020 demonstrating considerable performance boosts, KeyShot 9 adding GPU rendering and RealCloth, a Maxwell 5 engine re-write built for speed, and so much more than we can list here.

As always, we’d like to extend our sincere thanks to all of our customers and partners for making this another great year, and we wish you all a Merry Christmas and a prosperous New Year. With both the year and decade drawing to a close, it’s time to send off 2019 in style.

CAD Software Direct Opening Times

Our offices are open as normal on December 23rd, so any orders placed before then will be processed as usual. We will do everything we can to get late orders back to you before the break, and there will be limited order processing between Christmas and the New Year. Otherwise we’ll be back to work and sending out orders first thing on January 2nd.

Christmas and New Year Offers – Up to 50% OFF RRP

Vectorworks

25% OFF All Purchases
Offer until December 31st

Vectorworks Offer

Excludes Service Select renewals, Dongles, Shipping, Reinstatements, and Prorated cost of adding to the service select contract.


Maxwell Render

20% OFF A New Licence
Offer until January 6th

Maxwell Render Offer


Realflow

50% OFF New Licences, 30% OFF Plugin versions
Offer until January 6th

RealFlow Offer


Rhino 6

15% OFF RRP on Rhino 6 Licences and Upgrades
Offer until January 2nd

Rhino Offer


15% OFF the V-Ray + Rhino Bundle
Comes with FREE Affinity Photo
Offer until January 2nd

V-Ray Rhino Bundle Offer


£50 OFF A New ZBrush Licence
Offer until January 2nd

ZBrush Offer


£50 OFF A New Artlantis Licence
Offer until January 2nd

Artlantis Offer


If you have any questions or would like further information, give us a call on 01206 804984 or send an email to contact@cadsoftwaredirect.com

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
from all of us at CAD Software Direct!

KeyShot World 2020

KeyShot World

KeyShot World is back! It might be a bit of a trek for us here in the UK, but KeyShot World brings users and experts from all kinds of backgrounds together in one place and is the premier event for all things KeyShot.

This year, KeyShot World returns to Southern California on March 16th-17th at the Paséa Hotel & Spa, Huntington Beach.

Register Now

Network with companies from all over, and join technical sessions and hands-on workshops hosted by Luxion’s own experts. You can expect to see workflows, material creation, lighting, animation and much more during your visit.

Just one ticket covers both days of the event, and with it you will get sessions and workshops, breakfast and lunch on both days, and it includes access to the keynote and evening reception on the first day.

Group pricing is available as well, so if you want this on your calendar for March next year, make sure to register. Tickets really are going fast and space is limited.

Register Now

Corona for SketchUp – What Happened?

Corona for SketchUp

While the latest news surrounding Corona for SketchUp may have been announced way back in 2018, we are still seeing search activity on Corona for SketchUp. Here’s a little bit about what happened, and some alternative suggestions.

In early 2018, the team behind Corona admitted that the SketchUp plugin was not successful due to a small team of developers undertaking work before moving on to other projects. Little progress was made and some development roadblocks surfaced, which combined with limited manpower dedicated to the plugin, pulled the project to a halt.

It was around this time as well that Chaos Group released version 3.6 of their highly successful V-Ray for SketchUp plugin. After seeing where their own project was at, and comparing it to Chaos Group’s offering, the Corona developers decided it best to concentrate their efforts into Corona for 3ds Max and Corona for Cinema 4D – especially as the Corona team have since joined to become part of Chaos Group themselves.

It is a possibility that a unified API for Corona and V-Ray, or a universal export format may appear at some point, but this is far from an official plan so don’t hold out hope on this one.

Corona for SketchUp Alternatives

Fortunately, there are a wealth of renderers for SketchUp.

V-Ray for SketchUp offers easy photo-realistic rendering for artists and designers in architecture, interior design, film and games design as well as visual effects and much more.

Maxwell Render is available as a plugin for SketchUp as well as a standalone package. Maxwell Render provides unbiased rendering for stunning lighting and realism.

KeyShot is a standalone render that can be used with SketchUp files. This is ideal for photo-realistic product shots.

If you’d like to know more about which render is best for you, contact us or find out more at CAD Software Direct.

KeyShot 9 Feature: RealCloth

KeyShot 9.1

With KeyShot 9, you get access to brand new features including GPU Mode rendering, advanced denoise, fuzz and more.

The webinar below focusses on RealCloth, the tool that lets you create highly realistic woven materials within KeyShot 9. Follow along as Creative Specialist Karim Merchant takes you through the incredible new RealCloth feature and see how you too can render realistic soft goods with ease.

Request a free KeyShot trial today to get started.

Artlantis 2020 is Out Now

Artlantis 2020

The latest version of Artlantis is available, and with it comes a host of new features.

Buy Artlantis 2020

What’s New?

RAL Colours – Artlantis 2020 offers 243 codified colours and tints from the RAL Effect, RAL Design and RAL Classic colour charts, which are the defining paint standards in the world of architecture and building construction.

Denoiser Tool – Decrease or even cancel the noise from your renderings, typically produced by the reflection from shaders. Want a little noise in your image? Decide for yourself to activate this option or not. The Denoiser tool analyses the image’s pixels and reduces the noise.

3D Grass – The integrated Media catalog offers 4 new grass types and 6 updated types of 3D grass enhanced with new settings to adjust the colour of the grass tufts and apply density variations.

Portals Tool – A new optimisation setting for managing light in Artlantis. When using low settings for a fast calculation of your renders, this option improves the lighting of your indoor scenes and removes the noise from the image.

Got an Older Version of Artlantis?

If you’re using a version of Artlantis older than the 2019 release, you can take advantage of an offer to upgrade at a discount before the 31st December 2019.

Upgrade Artlantis

V-Ray Next for Revit is Here

V-Ray Next for Revit

Revit is the latest platform to be upgraded to V-Ray Next, as it has now been announced that V-Ray Next for Revit is available! Architects can now get more creative, using dozens of new features and improvements to produce photo-realistic imagery faster than ever before.

V-Ray Next for Revit is available as a perpetual licence, monthly or annual subscription.

What’s New?

  • New Asset Editor – Create, edit, save and manage V-Ray materials all in one place. Advanced materials give designers even more control when fine-tuning their designs, simplifying the process of recreating real-world materials with complex surfaces.
  • Appearance Manager – Basic Revit assets can now be switched to photo-realistic V-Ray assets at render time to keep BIM models unaffected and clean. 
  • Better Entourage – With .vrscene linking, architects can now quickly populate visualisations with high-quality entourage from any V-Ray product, giving designs a more custom look.
  • Randomise Objects – Add variety to plants and trees by randomising the scale and rotation of V-Ray Proxy and V-Ray Scene instances.
  • Lighting Analysis – Easily evaluate real-world lux values from daylight and fixtures to determine the true illumination levels of a design.
  • Speed Boosts – Rendering speeds are now up to 50 percent faster in V-Ray Next. Improvements to GPU rendering offer another 200 percent, further extended through V-Ray’s new Adaptive Dome Light, which can show improvements up to 2x.
  • Auto Exposure & White Balance – The V-Ray Physical Camera can now set the correct camera exposure and white balance automatically, offering picture-perfect renders every time.
  • Real-Time AI Denoiser – No-input denoising eliminates image noise almost instantly to give an immediate sense of lighting.
  • New Lens Effects – Add an extra touch of photo-realism with the fully redesigned camera lens effects. Simulate real-world bloom and glare; add lens dust and scratches; or get feedback in the Aperture Preview for more refined control.
  • Improved Toolbar – Redesigned icons and features make for a more intuitive user experience.
  • Revit Decals – With full support for Revit Decals, users can now easily render paintings, signs, screens and more.
  • Settings & Work-Sharing – V-Ray settings can now be saved within a Revit project, making it easy to adopt and share the same render settings across teams and projects.
  • Direct Render Saves – A streamlined workflow now allows for direct saves to a Revit project from the V-Ray Frame Buffer.
  • Background Image – Stunning light setups can now be combined with custom background images through a merged dialog, making it easier to separate out different elements of a lighting simulation.

V-Ray Next for Revit is available now at CAD Software Direct as a perpetual licence, monthly or annual subscription.

KeyShot 2019 Render Competition

KeyShot 9 Competition

For the month of December KeyShot are hosting the 2019 Holiday Render Competition! This is your opportunity to create an amazing KeyShot scene using the all-new features in KeyShot 9. To be in with the chance of winning, make use of these brand new features including:

  • RealCloth that brings you creation and visualisation of realistic woven materials.
  • Fuzz that allows you to add any amount of fuzz or fur (or tinsel!) you need to the surface of any object.
  • Contour Texture that lets you add an illustration-like effect on top of real-world materials such as metal or plastic.
  • 3D Model Library that provides high-quality, specially curated 3D models to complement the products in your scene.

You can even use the new Web Configurator, Animation Curve Control, Substance Painter Import, and VStitcher Integration, plus the new GPU support and Denoise to render it all out.

The top 3 finalists will receive big KeyShot prizes!

Entry Requirements

– Create your visual using one of the new features listed above.
– Use a seasonal theme of the Winter Holidays (i.e. Christmas, Hanukkah, New Years).
– All rendering and/or animation must be done in KeyShot 9.
– Screenshots, fully rendered images, animations or KeyShotXR’s and Configurators may all be submitted.
– Submit your entry on the ‘2019 KeyShot Holiday Render Competition’ forum board
– Multiple entries are acceptable
– Post edits are acceptable
– The competition is open to everyone
– Team entries are welcome – prize will be transferred to team leader

Render Output Specification:
Resolution: 16:9 Ratio (at or above 1920×1080) and/or 1:1 (1080×1080)
Filetype: .jpg, .png, .mp4, .avi, .html

Need A Licence To Enter?

If you need a licence for the competition, you can request a trial here:
https://www.cadsoftwaredirect.com/request-keyshot-trial

Extra Details

With your submission, mention what modeling software or other tools were used. Provide credit to where you downloaded or who created any supporting models as well. If post editing is done, show a before and after!

Luxion retains the right to use any image or animation submitted for purposes of promotion and marketing. All rights to the image belong to the person creating the image and attribution will be given when an image is used. Additional requests for use of render or animation files may be requested of the user via email.

Luxion’s Judging Criteria:
The entries will be judged on three criteria:

Innovation – How is it being used? What is the application?
Creativity – What is the content? What materials/lighting?
Execution – How was KeyShot used? How is the experience?

Prizes:
3x Grand Prizes  – KeyShot Pro (worth £1,520 each!)
3x 1st Place Prizes – KeyShot HD (worth £760 each!)
Honorable mentions (up to 10) – KeyShot Prize Pack (t-shirts, mug, etc.)

Deadline:
Tuesday, December 31st 11:59 PST (7:59 GMT)

Announcement:
The winner will be announced Tuesday, January 14th on the KeyShot website, forum and social media sites.

The contest is already open and ends
Tuesday, December 31st.