Issue: Volume 39 Issue 1: (Jan/Feb 2016)



Digital Content Creation

More Modo

The Foundry has introduced Modo 902, which adds a focused tool set for digital matte painting and virtual camera creation, making it faster and easier to match the authentic with the synthetic. Users can now create virtual cameras that match a still image simply by drawing on screen. They also can project images into texture channels or use a special projection shader. Projection ink can be used to paint textures directly onto UV-mapped geometry. The upgrade is free to Modo 901 users.

Max Extension

Autodesk has launched 3ds Max 2016 Extension 2 for 3D modeling, animation, and rendering. Extension 2 features a number of improvements. Max creation graph enhancements allow users to create, manipulate, and use shapes and splines with new nodes. Pros can also import bitmaps and simulation data like CSV or Open VDB files. Print Studio allows users to export 3ds Max files for 3D printing in one swift click. And animators can now import and animate accurate simulation data to visualize how it changes over time. New text and shape map tools allow animators to use objects as a mask to create custom decals, graffiti, and other text-based graphics on the fly without leaving 3ds Max. Also new is the ability to easily and accurately create, place, and animate multiple materials, and use any shape to control the application of materials to an object.


Give it a Shot

Luxion, maker of KeyShot, the real-time raytracing and global illumination application, has released KeyShot 6, which refines the rendering workflow with reduced complexity and advanced features. Additionally, KeyShot 6 is now optimized for interior renderings, including complex interiors with indirect lighting, with an all-new material graph that allows complex material creation, including roughness mapping for weathered materials and material animation. 

Luxion also has introduced new product structure and pricing for KeyShot HD and KeyShot Pro Editions. KeyShot HD now comes with unlimited real-time rendering and output resolution and remains priced at $995. KeyShot Pro now includes KeyShot Animation, previously a $500 add-on, and remains priced at $1,995. Animation will no longer be available as an add-on for new purchases of KeyShot. KeyShotVR and all KeyShot Network Rendering options remain available as add-ons for all editions of KeyShot.


For Small Studios

IKinema has introduced a small-studio version of its full-body IK RunTime middleware. RunTime-Indie is targeted at small, independent studios and is technically identical to RunTime, the full-body solver used by top publishers to create convincing and realistic motion for characters during gameplay. Integrated with Unreal Engine 4, RunTime enables characters to react naturally to ever-changing terrain and environments, and scale obstacles with ease in real time. As a result, VR and game developers are able to deliver realistic animation with believable characters. IKinema has also announced the addition of a full rig editor to both RunTime and RunTime-Indie, enabling developers from studios of all sizes to rig characters – whether human or fantasy – without the use of third-party tools. Instead, they can rig directly within the engine, modifying assets and unlocking game play, from locomotion, climbing, and foot placement, to pointing props and weapons, reaching, and
so forth.




@Xi Computers has unveiled a new MTower line of workstations based on overclocked Intel Xeon processors. Xi MTower workstations sport the latest V.3 edition Intel Xeon 1650 and 1660 processors, clocked at over 4 ghz and configurable with the newest generation of Nvidia Quadro Maxwell video cards. Single-socket, Xeon workstation performance is now delivered by the Xi MTower PCIe, with a full eight-core clock speed of 4.10 ghz and four-channel interleave 2133 DDR4 scalable to 64gb. These new Xi Workstations can be custom-configured and ordered directly from the company’s website.