MONTPELLIER, FRANCE — Isotropix, a privately held software company developing high-end, innovative graphics software, has released Clarisse iFX 4.0 SP2, an update of its flagship product, Clarisse. Clarisse is a high-end 3D DCC and production renderer used to create and render a large fraction of the visual effects in the last two Oscar award winners for best visual effects: Blade Runner 2049 and First Man. This new update enables interactive Nvidia RTX ray tracing in Clarisse’s 3D viewport at game engine speeds. Clarisse iFX 4.0 SP2 is available immediately for free to existing customers with active maintenance (http://downloads.isotropix.com).
Isotropix is using Nvidia RTX ray-tracing hardware to speed up manipulation and display of production scenes. As a result, artists can now create, interact and display production scenes made of hundreds of billions of polygons in real-time at speeds often 50-100X faster than the prior CPU-based viewport.
“This technology has major implications for our industry. The display performance is so fast that it is now possible for filmmakers and VFX supervisors to visualize and edit in real-time actual, unmodified production scenes for set dressing and for virtual cinematography. They no longer need to convert product assets to play in game engines to display an approximation of the scenes. This is truly revolutionary! It’s very exciting since it’s just the beginning,” says Sam Assadian co-founder and CEO at Isotropix.
In a technology sneak peek video released at the Nvidia GPU Technology Conference recently, Isotropix showed a 3D artist manipulating a production scene of over 700 billion of polygons with ambient occlusion on at over 60 frames per second. This level of performance on such scenes has never been seen before.
Now this technology is available in Clarisse iFX 4.0 SP2, which also includes many improvements to its multiple importance sampling that improves final rendering quality, as well as bug fixes. Compared to previous versions, the new sampling strategies, introduced in 4.0 SP2, resolve faster and produce less visual noise for the same number of samples.
Isotropix has always been interested in GPU accelerated ray tracing to improve artists’ workflows. For the past three years, Isotropix and Nvidia have collaborated to use GPUs to speed up Clarisse. In March 2018, Isotropix introduced Clarisse iFX 3.6 SP1, the first commercial application in the VFX and animation industry to offer the Nvidia OptiX AI-accelerated denoiser.
“When Nvidia presented OptiX to us, we immediately saw the immense benefit our users would get from it during lookdev and lighting. We were the first company to adopt the AI-accelerated denoiser included with the OptiX SDK and, since then, many others have followed our footsteps,” adds Sébastien Guichou, co-founder and CTO at Isotropix.
Current hardware limitations prevent the team at Isotropix from porting Clarisse’s production renderer to GPU without giving up several critical features. Isotropix is working with Nvidia to support volumes, render-time displacements, direct ray tracing of Catmull Clark implicit surfaces without tessellation and time instance in scatterers to future updates of hardware-accelerated 3D View in the future.
“Isotopix has taken an innovative and phased approach for the adoption of RTX ray-tracing technology to deliver the uncompromised rendering experience Clarisse customers have come to expect. Building on our long history of working together to advance the rendering workflow, we’re looking forward to bringing new capabilities to customers,” says John Ison, director, marketing and business development, Nvidia.