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Plugin News  –  July 2016

Saturday 30 July 2016 - 16:51

 

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for Alpha 3.02 are:
- Bitmaps connected to a material are now baked to their native resolution and color depth
- Cycles Environment map now has a reflection map slot
- Adds a Hair BSDF (Surface) material
- Adds a Hair BSDF node to the node graph editor
- Burley falloff is now available on the SSS material/node
- Backspace now works for numeric inputs in the node graph editor


New Plugin: Atmospherics

This commercial MAXScript is designed to quickly create realistic dust particles or dandelion fluff flying in the air based on the geometry.

GoldenDust is available for Max 2014 to 2017 and costs €2.60.


Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v0.2.1b are:
- Setup now detects lack of Nvidia GPUs and old processor models
- Alpha can now be read from images
- Improves material preview and quality settings
- Adds a preview quality control
- Adds a property for translating octane instancing
- Adds a gamma parameter for the color correction texture
- Adds support for tone mapping LUTs
- Textures with different from 1st map channel are now shown in the Max viewport
- The environment tab is now updated during scene conversion
- The GPU manager settings now get saved properly


Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v8.0.6.5 are:
- Updates Repository Installer to create a backup of existing Mongo data when re-installing
- The 'installmongodb' option for the Repository Installer is no longer required
- Tweaks the width of the Houdini Submitter installer text boxes to fit better on OS X machines
- Fixes several integrated submitter installers to work properly in unattended mode
- Fixes Harmony and Katana integrated submitter installers to be properly signed
- Improves performance of the Select Dependencies window when opened via integrated submitters
- Clarifies message logged when reloading Event Plugins due to Repository modifications
- Fixes a bug with Deadline's embedded Python that was causing errors on some relative imports
- Fixes a Launcher bug where resuming a suspended machine would not re-start the Deadline Slave
- Fixes the init.d script for the Launcher daemon sometimes being unable to stop the Launcher daemon
- Fixes a bug where the Launcher could crash when failing to connect to the specified Repository
- Fixes a bug where scripts run through the Launcher might connect to an out of date repository
- Fixes a Dependency View bug that prevented certain dependency chains from displaying
- Fixes a Monitor update issue where it could lock up upon losing connection to the database
- Fixes the Monitor panels button state not being preserved when pinning/restoring layouts on OS X
- Fixes a bug where Limit Groups would not immediately show up when connected to a Proxy Server
- Fixes the Monitor from querying for License Forwarder information even after disconnecting
- Fixes the Monitor to load Jobs in descending order of last modification on initial load
- Fixes a bug that was preventing new Limits from saving their UBL options properly
- Launching a second Monitor pointing to a repository ending in a backslash no longer causes an error
- Improves error logging on the Proxy
- Fixes a bug where certain files requested through the Proxy weren't synching properly cross-OS
- Fixes a bug that caused a '?' at the beginning of all log reports when connected to a Proxy Server
- Fixes Slaves constantly printing out errors if it can't connect to the primary Pulse machine
- Fixes a bug where a Slave's Tasks sometimes got requeued by Repository Repair
- Fixes Slaves from rendering in Overage mode (using UBL) after overage value has been reduced
- Fixes a bug that caused an import error when starting the Web Service on OS X
- Fixes a bug where the Web Service was checking the 'Verbose Logging' setting for Pulse
- Improves the initialization speed for Command, which speeds up any command it is used to run
- Fixes the Max plugin not respecting the Slave's CPU Affinity overrides
- Fixes a unicode-related bug in the After Effects plugin's error handling code
- Stdout handlers in the After Effects plugin now properly pick up 'Group Messages'
- Fixes an error that occurred when changing the Script File in the C4D Monitor Submitter
- Adds an option to the C4D submitter to use the frame range from individual Takes
- Adds explicit support for Clarisse 3
- Fixes the integrated submitter to work properly with Fusion 8.1
- Fixes a bug where the Jigsaw panel wasn't working in the Houdini integrated submitter
- Fixes a Houdini submitter bug that occurred while retrieving IFDs when there were no takes defined
- Fixes a Houdini submitter bug where progress wouldn't increment when submitting multiple Jobs
- Fixes typos and improves tooltips in the Katana submitters
- Makes some cosmetic improvements to the Katana integrated submitter
- Changes the Maya Batch plugin to force standard frame list when rendering with V-Ray
- Adds Iray support in the MayaCmd plugin
- Fixes some confusing error messaging that was listing incorrect render layers in the Maya submitter
- Fixes a bug in the Modo plugin that prevented relative paths from being updated properly
- Adds a check to account for negative progress being printed out by some versions of Modo
- Improves error messaging in the Nuke Integrated Submitter
- Rhino will now print out errors encountered when rendering with Maxwell to the Deadline log
- Adds a popup handler to the Rhino plugin for the Maxwell License dialog
- Fixes a bug in the Rhino submitter which was causing it to never get the path to Jigsaw
- Fixes a bug where the VRay DBR submitter for Max didn't remain interactive once rendering started
- Fixes a bug in the Monitor Submitter for VRED that prevented the icon from loading properly
- Fixes a bug in the Monitor Submitter for VRED when submitting the Scene as an auxiliary file
- Fixes arguments passed to VRED to correctly have a space after the scene file

Deadline is available for Max 2010 to 2017 and costs $185 per node. A demo version is available here.


New Plugin: Animation

Place People is a commercial MAXScript that allows you to place characters created with Populate anywhere in your scene, either following a 3D spline path or glued to any surface.

Features include:
- Move and rotate 'walkers' and 'standing' characters anywhere in your scene with the mouse
- Glue them to any surface made from a list of geometry objects from your scene
- Create a 'walkers' Flow following a 3D spline path and glued to a surface
- Create a 'standing' people IdleArea from any spline in your scene and glue them to a surface
- Create a queue of 'standing' characters following any 3D path and glued to a surface
- Place any existing 'walker' or 'standing' character anywhere along a 3D spline

Place People is currently available for Max 2014 and costs €14.95. A version for Max 2016 will be available soon.


Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v3.0 include:
- Lots of improvements in Max V-Ray/Scanline to C4D Standard conversion
- Lots of improvements in Max V-Ray/Scanline to C4D Vray conversion
- Adds support for Max V-Ray Proxy -> C4D instances
- Smarter conversions based on scene analysis
- New interface with different export options
- You can now easily change the temp path from the UI
- V-Ray logo no longer appears in C4D when exporting in default mode
- Faster C4D V-Ray material import
- Adds support for Proxy/Instances, IES lights, Meshsmooth/Turbosmooth and more
- Adds support for V-Ray 3.0, 3.20. 3.30 and 3.40

MaxToC4D is available for Max 2015 to 2017 and normally costs $39. For a limited time you can get a license for $19.


New Plugin: Modelling

This MCG creates fluted column geometry with lots of controls so you are not stuck with a static pre-made column. It's worth noting that it only creates the main shaft of the column, not the ornate base or top.

MCG Fluted Column is available for Max 2016 to 2017 and costs $5.


Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v0.2.0 are:
- Adds vertex motion blur
- The noise channel uses red to show noisy areas and green for noise free areas
- New 'angle affect' parameter increases glossiness for low angles
- Textures are now shown in the viewport after material conversion
- The Fresnel curve is now affected by glossy values
- Fixes a crash with incorrect face IDs
- You can now select objects via FStorm Camera in Max 2015
- Fixes incorrect results with SSS + opacity


New Plugin: Global Utilites

This global utility plugin allows the MAXScript Editor to be controlled using MAXScript and exposes the Editor's internal SciTE API to MAXScript. Additionally it lets you use the MAXScript Editor in an extended viewport and control several aspects of the Editor window. It allows for pretty advanced usage, but the extended viewport functionality might come handy for many casual scripters too.

Features include:
- MAXScript Editor as an Extended Viewport
- Extensive control over the MAXScript Editor via MAXScript
- Access to the Scintilla/SciTE internal command set
- A Callback mechanism to get notified about changes and events occurring in the MAXScript Editor


New Plugin: Animation

Tracks Simulator is commercial MAXScript that allows you to simulate tank tracks along splines or with keyframes. Features include:
- Automatic track creation
- Automatic track animation (forwards, back, left, right)
- Realtime simulations or baked simulations
- Change tracks from left or right side

Tracks Simulator is available for Max 2014 to 2016 and costs $10.


Plugin Update: Particles

Changes for SP1 are:
- Enhances stability and improved interoperability with Max
- New EggTimer 'ReachedHold' feature acts as a new output staying active after reaching the event
- The enhanced SnapShot operator now supports a two pronged 'Particle A' and 'Particle B' input
- The Object Helper operator can now evaluate or process pairs of particles in an object list
- Intersect operator no longer fails on possible self-intersections
- Fixes the Max auto-backup feature from interfering with the student edition 'Save' dialog
- Alembic Export Material ID Fix when using Per Object per Particle
- Fixes the StdEmitter random positions stopping after 4000 points
- Fixes VolumeBreaker not fragmenting when you used more cells as set in max chunks

ThinkingParticles is available for Max 2015 to 2017 and costs €540 per year. A demo version is available here.


Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v1.23 are:
- Fixes some bugs with the custom attributes

ProPal is available for Max 2008 to 2017 and costs $10.


Plugin Update: Modelling / Animation

Changes for v4.5.2.8067 are:
- The License server IP file can now be specified using an environment variable
- Changes the MR shader install directory on Max 2017
- Fixes the Hair clustering modifier low threshold value causing flickering on deforming meshes
- Removes the 'reorient hair node' option from the Ground Strands modifier (it did nothing)
- Fixes an assertion during grounding about direction vector not being unit size

Ornatrix is available for Max 2009 to 2017 and costs $499. A demo version is available here.


New Plugin: Modelling

Laubwerk Plants are an easy way to use high quality, botanically approved plants with multiple variations, ages and seasons in Max. Visual plant library browsing, a wide range of Level of Detail Options and much more comes through the bundled Laubwerk Player, a piece of software that brings the plant dataset to life.

Plants Kit 8 includes the following temperate shrubs: Juneberry, Yunnan Redbud, Purple-leaved Filbert, Common Hawthorn, Border Forsythia, Bachelor's Buttons, Dwarf Mountain Pine, Cherry Laurel 'Schipkaensis', Dog-Rose and Dwarf Artic Willow.

Laubwerk Plants Kit 8 is available for Max 2010 to 2017 and costs €149. A demo version is available here.


New Plugin: MCG

This is an MCG object that creates a cylinder with a user-defined number of grooves, including full control over groove count, depth, segments, profile, etc.


New Plugin: MCG

This is an MCG object that converts your text to a Runes font (Elder Futhark).


Plugin Update: Modifiers

Changes for v1.82 are:
- Fixes a crash when opening geometry paint modes in Max 2017
- Fixes a crash in some Max versions when using 'Adjust vertex colors'


Plugin Update: Modelling / Texturing

Changes for v5.1.0 are:
- Adds support for Max 2017
- Adds support for V-Ray 3.4
- Adds an option to customize Font Size for the Lister
- Toolbar Actions are available at 'Customize User Interface' (within 'Forest Pack' category)
- Forest Lister is now sorted by object names
- All HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE configuration keys can also be read from HKEY_CURRENT_USER
- Fixes invisible objects in V-Ray when using VRayPhysicalCamera / PhysicalCamera with motion blur
- Effects->Distance to area attributes now returns correct values
- Fixes a bug with Animation modes in Mental Ray
- Fixes a rare crash bug when using Animation modes and Display limits
- Fixes a crash when rendering without a license
- Effects->dotprod function is now declared as real instead of vector
- Fixes the Toolbar being placed out of screen
- Fixes the Toolbar not being available after a Workspace change
- Effects->random generator now returns consistent values in Custom Edit mode
- Fixes a rare bug that caused animated objects to not update correctly
- Fixes Forest Exclude Areas sometimes having no effect after the first animation frame
- Forest now updates with rotation or scale changes on Custom Objects
- Fixes a bug with XRef scenes binded to a rotated object
- Fixes an updating issue with Effects using the 'max.time' property

Forest Pack Pro is available for Max 2010 to 2017 and costs €200. A demo version is available here.


Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v2.7.0 are:
- Adds support for Max 2017
- Adds support for V-Ray 3.4
- Adds an option to customize Font Size for the Lister
- Toolbar Actions are available at 'Customize User Interface' (within 'RailClone' category)
- When a Library style is loaded, all objects in the scene using that syle are now updated
- 'Copy Style' and Library updates retain parameter values which have been modified by the user
- RailClone Lister is now sorted by object names
- Fixes an error if an empty segment is used initially on a Sequencer or Conditional operator
- Fixes an error with Points-cloud mode if the RC object has no material assigned
- Fixes invisible objects in V-Ray when using VRayPhysicalCamera / PhysicalCamera with motion blur
- Library load now updates current if style is used in the scene on more than one object
- Fixes the Toolbar being placed out of screen
- Fixes the Toolbar not being available after a Workspace change
- Fixes a bug with Bevel and corner angles that are exactly 180 degrees
- Fixes incompleted segments with Bevel and Extend mode
- Fixes a Style Editor crash in 64-bit Max 2011 and 2012
- Fixes colors in Points-cloud mode
- Fixes a potential issue with Edit->Clone procedure
- Style->Thumbnail is now updated on 'Copy Style' operations
- Style->Thumbnail and Description are now visible even if Library Browser is not initialized
- All HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE configuration keys can also be read from HKEY_CURRENT_USER

RailClone Pro is available for Max 2010 to 2017 and costs €200. A demo version is available here.


Plugin Update: Modifiers

Changes for v1.8 are:
- Adds support for Max 2014 to 2017
- Average vertices now works across multiple objects
- Adds an option to select double faces
- Adds an option to exclude hidden vertices from soft selection
- Vertex color now supports map channels
- Adds a filter option to vertex color which can hold R, G, and/or B channel
- Vertex color and vertex color adjust now support soft selection
- Paint scatter can now clone node trees


New Plugin: Modelling

RelaxBySG is a modifier that smooth meshes without destroying the hard edges defined by smoothing groups. It works on the same principle as the standard Relax modifier, but offers a greater degree of control. Rather than relying on the modifier to find boundaries and corners and hoping for the best, you can use smoothing groups to define them yourself.

RelaxBySG is available for Max 2012 to 2017 and costs $4.99.


Plugin Update: Animation

Changes for v4.0 are:
- New Narrowband FLIP solver speeds up simulation time with no change to the end meshing result
- Adds support for exporting and rendering foam particles and granular particles with V-Ray
- User Interface has been rewritten for ease of use and for fast setup
- New Co-Rotational algorithm for simulating Finite Element Method replaces the Co-Rigid solver
- Adds Volumetric cutting of Finite Element Method objects via a cutting node
- Finite Element Objects can now be animated by other objects
- The FX Particle System now has a Node Based Editor for specific control of the fluid simulation
- New Strain Based Dynamics solver allows for extremely accurate cloth simulations
- The Strain Based Dynamics solver also allows for SBD and FLIP Fluid interaction

BulletFX is available for Max 2013 to 2017 and costs $320. A demo version is available here.


Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v1.3.3947 Alpha are:
- Adds support for light linking of FurryBall lights
- Adds support for layered (composite) materials
- Adds support for environment maps
- Adds support for import objects
- Some other improvements

FurryBall RT is available for Max 2013 to 2017 and costs €359. A demo version is available here.


Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v1.85 are:
- Adds new modify tool: 2-point planar rotation
- Adds new convenient tool: Unhide by selection
- Adds new Replicator tool: in-viewport (pick and point) object replacer and instancer
- Adds new Eyedropper tool: in-viewport (pick and point) mass copying
- Measure Area should now work faster
- Fixes thickness parameter and improves Obj mode in the Paneling tool
- Paneling Detailer can now be launched as a separate tool
- Fixes object selection and adds more mirror options to the Paneling Detailer
- Improves Tooltips in toolbars and adds tooltips in Ribbon and tools w/UI
- The Ribbon layout has been re-worked
- Adds an intersection mode (all guides or current) toggle command
- The refGuides floater UI has been re-worked, bug-fixes and cosmetic changes
- Adds a floater UI for the ToolBox
- Adds a floater UI for the rest of the tools
- Some other minor cosmetic changes

DesignToolBox is available for Max 2014 to 2017 and costs $22.99.


New Plugin: Renderers

Redshift is a fully GPU-accelerated, biased renderer which uses approximation and interpolation techniques to achieve noise-free results with relatively few samples, making it much faster than unbiased rendering. Redshift uses an out-of-core architecture for geometry and textures, allowing you to render massive scenes that would otherwise never fit in video memory. It also supports multiple GPUs, proxies and instances, uses node-based shading, has AOV outputs and comes with a full selection of cameras (eg. stereo spherical, orthogonal, fisheye)

Redshift is available for Max 2013 to 2017 and costs $500. Until July 19th you can get a 20% discount on the license price, taking it down to $400. A demo version is available here.


Plugin Update: Animation

Changes for v1.4.1 are:
- Adds a LookAt axis
- Fixes Twist
- You can now change any parameter without the script (in Controller object(head object))
- Adds a Slide function for selected objects

Bone on Spline is available for Max 2014 to 2016 and costs $10.


Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.1 are:
- Adds support for Max 2017


Plugin Update: Texturing

Changes for v4.2.7 are:
- Fixes the Rectangle Packer not detecting NaN and Infinite values
- Fixes a bug in UV Template Render not rendering correctly stacked modifiers
- Fixes a bug in UV Template Render with disabled modifiers

PolyUnwrapper is available for Max 2010 to 2017 and costs $34.99. A demo version is available here.


Plugin Update: MCG

Changes for v1.04 are:
- Adds the RemoveDuplicates logic back in


Plugin Update: Materials

Changes for v3.4.132 are:
- Adds support for Max 2017


Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v0.1.16 are:
- 18% speed up on benchmark scene
- Adds a motion blur global setting
- Adds RT mode launch and scene converter via 3ds Max command/MAXScript
- HDRI textures now take 3 times less GPU memory
- Adds a non-tonemapped result option (for HDRI output)
- A 100% white bitmap opacity now gives 1.0 opacity
- Fixes incorrect FStorm setup path in some cases


Plugin Update: Modelling / Animation

Changes for v4.5.1.7927 are:
- Fixes an assertion when the Detail modifier is applied to malformed strands
- Fixes Hair from mesh strands with frizz flipping around when the strip surface is deformed
- Fixes a Mental Ray assertion on Max 2017 startup
- Optimizes some operators by pre-computing texture map information
- Some internal changes

Ornatrix is available for Max 2009 to 2017 and costs $499. A demo version is available here.


Plugin Update: Animation

Changes for v1.3 are:
- Adds functionality to bake animation

Bone on Spline is available for Max 2014 to 2016 and costs $5.


Plugin Update: Particles

Changes for v6.4 are:
- Adds Ultra HD UI support in Max 2017
- Adds a dedicated viscoelastic solver for simulating highly viscous fluids
- Materials and Mapping can now be assigned to generated implicit ISO surfaces
- Captured or free air bubbles can now be simulated/created with the new ImplicitShape operator
- Adds a new reset mode to the VolumePosition Helper
- You can now set different adhesion values per boundary with the adhesion multiplier
- A new boolean flag 'Reached' has been added to the popular EggTimer node
- Adds a new Object Helper node to the Object output channel
- Adds a new FLOW option to MatterWaves

ThinkingParticles is available for Max 2015 to 2017 and costs €540 per year. A demo version is available here.


Site News: Available for contract work...

This is my monthly news entry to let people know that I am always available for 3D work (I don't just run this site, and I don't earn any money from it).

My main areas of work are commercials, industrial and technical animation, as well as programming and scripting. All of the relevant information can be found on my other site Animation Design, along with some videos of my work to give you an idea of what I can do. So if I can help out at all, just let me know.


Site News: Calling all freeware plugin developers

If you are a plugin developer with source code for plugins that you don't develop anymore, it would be great if you could get in touch with me. I would be glad to recompile as many old plugins as possible to stop them from disappearing for ever. Just mail me to let me know what sort of stuff you've got.

On a side note, this is how the Messiah:studio plugins got recompiled for Max 9 to 2012, as well as all of the Sisyphus plugins, so it's worth sending stuff my way :o)

Dave


Site News: News Archives

The news from previous months can be accessed by clicking on the 'Plugin news archive' link in the menu.