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Autodesk Arnold Render v5.0

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Arnold is an advanced Monte Carlo ray tracing renderer built for the demands of feature-length animation and visual effects. Originally co-developed with Sony Pictures Imageworks and now their main renderer, Arnold is used at over 300 studios worldwide including ILM, Framestore, MPC, The Mill and Digic Pictures.


Highlights

Arnold was the primary renderer on dozens of films from Monster House and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs to Pacific Rim and Gravity. It is available as a standalone renderer on Linux, Windows and Mac OS X, with plug-ins for Maya, 3ds Max, Houdini, Cinema 4D, Katana and Softimage.

Arnold is a fast, memory efficient and scalable physically-based raytracer. Its aim is to simplify the pipeline of VFX and animation companies with a reduced set of user interface elements, and by promoting a single pass approach removing all the associated storage and management costs.

Features

Fur & Hair

arnold fur and hairAn efficient raytraced curve primitive makes Arnold the perfect choice for rendering fur and hair using very little memory. Its hair shader has double offset speculars, transmission and is specifically designed to reduce flickering of thin hairs.

 

Motion blur

arnold motion blurAccurate 3D motion blur correctly interacts with shadows, volumes, indirect lighting, reflection or refraction. Deformation motion blur is extremely efficient and works for polygons, hairs and particles. Rotational motion describes precise circular arcs.

 

Sub-surface scattering

arnaold subsurface scatteringOur raytracing-based sub-surface scattering approach makes tuning point clouds a thing of the past. It's easy to use, requires no additional memory, supports motion-blurred lighting, interactive lighting and its performance scales optimally as more CPU threads are used.

 

Volumes

arnold volumesThe volumetric rendering system is based on proprietary importance sampling algorithms and can render effects such as smoke, clouds, fog, pyroclastic flow or fire. Volumes interact with direct and indirect lighting from arbitrary area light sources. Supports OpenVDB and MayaFluids.

 

Flexibility and extensibility

arnold flexibilityThanks to an easy to use C++ API with Python bindings, TDs and programmers can integrate Arnold in external applications, and create custom shaders, cameras, light filters and output drivers. Arnold has been integrated into many apps, both commercial and proprietary.

 

Scalability

arnold scalabilityArnold is carefully multi-threaded and makes optimal use of all available CPU threads. Even for traditionally single-threaded operations such as loading of procedural geometry, displacement or ray accel construction. Hyper-threading provides a solid 20% speedup.

 

Instances

arnold instancesArnold can efficiently raytrace instances of any scene object with transformation and material overrides. It is easy to create thousands or even millions of instances resulting in trillions of renderable primitives, which is great for vegetation, large environments and FX.

 

Memory efficient

arnold memory efficientThanks to Arnold's compact and highly optimized data structures, you can render scenes with hundreds of millions of unique primitives quickly and with a much lower memory footprint than is possible with other renderers.

 

Deferred geometry loading

arnold deferred geometry loadingGeometry can be created on demand through "procedural" nodes (or stand-ins) rather than upfront. This allows the modular assembly of scenes. Procedural nodes can point to ASS, OBJ, PLY and DLL/DSO files, opening the door to programmatic scene creation and compositing.

 

Subdivision and displacement

arnold subdivision and displacementArnold supports Catmull-Clark subdivision surfaces. Subdivided vertices are then vector-displaced through arbitrary shader networks. High frequencies can be automatically captured as bump map, reducing the need for excessive subdivision.

 

Arbitrary Output Variables (AOVs)

arnold aovArnold can render any number of AOVs or passes for compositing purposes, including normal, Z-depth, position and ID masks. It also supports deep image data. Shaders can create their own custom outputs (such as direct and indirect diffuse, specular, SSS, etc).

 

Standalone command-line renderer

arnold command line rendererArnold has a native scene description format stored in human-readable text files (Arnold Scene Source, or .ass). These files are easily edited, can be read and written with the C/Python API, can be lazily loaded at render time, or can be fed to the command-line renderer, kick.

 

 

 

 

Plug-Ins

Arnold can be used in Maya, Softimage, Houdini, Cinema 4D and Katana. We will release other plug-ins in the future.

All of our plug-ins are free to use when you buy Arnold licenses. This means you can easily switch 3D software packages without having to spend money on additional Arnold licenses.

 

maya iconArnold for Maya

Provides a beautiful interface to our photorealistic renderer within Autodesk’s Maya.

Arnold for Maya (or MtoA) provides a bridge to the Arnold renderer from within Maya's standard interface. MtoA is now shipping with the Arnold 5.0 core.

Features

  • Seamless integration with Maya shapes, cameras, lights and shaders.
  • Image Based Lighting support, including a state of the art physical sky.
  • Interactive rendering (IPR) allows parameter changes to be rapidly previewed without interrupting your work.
  • Support for volume rendering with Maya Fluids.
  • Support for Maya Hair and nHair.
  • Particles and nParticles support, including particle instancer.
  • Defer the creation of geometry at render time with the Stand-in placeholder nodes.
  • Productivity boost: override sets, holdout mattes, shadow catcher, passes, UDIM style textures, and arbitrary primvar data.
  • Extensible through plug-ins (Golaem, FumeFX for Maya, Yeti, Shave & Haircut).
  • XGen integration.
  • Texturable geometric lights.
  • Deep EXR.
  • Rendering of curves.

 

c4d iconArnold for Cinema 4D

Arnold for Cinema 4D (or C4DtoA) provides a bridge to the Arnold renderer from within the standard Cinema 4D interface.  C4DtoA is now shipping with the latest Arnold 5.0 core.

Features

  • Seamless integration with C4D: objects (instances, cloners, deformers, generators), MoGraph geometry, hair and splines.
  • Support for both native particles and Thinking Particles.
  • The fastest interactive rendering (IPR) of all Arnold plugins, allows parameter changes to be rapidly previewed without interrupting your work.
  • Arnold Shading Network Editor, a node-based material editor.
  • A comprehensive list of shaders and utilities, including vertex maps and per-face materials.
  • Volume rendering with OpenVDB.
  • Deferred, render time generation of geometry with the Arnold procedural node.
  • Native linear workflow.
  • Team Render, including single-frame distributed rendering.
  • Support for third party plugins like X-Particles and Turbulence FD.

 

houdini iconArnold for Houdini

Arnold for Houdini (or HtoA) provides a tight bridge to the Arnold renderer from within the standard Houdini interface, in a way that is familiar to both Houdini users and Arnold users in Maya or Softimage. It also enables smooth lighting workflows between Houdini and other DCC applications, since setups can be exported and shared.

Features

  • All Arnold cameras (perspective, orthographic, spherical, fisheye) with depth of field and advanced shutter controls.
  • All Arnold lights (point, distant, spot, quad, disk, cylinder, skydome, mesh) with light filters and accurate viewport representation.
  • Custom Arnold shading network context with a comprehensive list of 106 shaders and utilities.
  • Atmospheric and background effects.
  • Volume rendering with support for OpenVDB and particles.
  • Polymeshes, curves, points with support for displacement and bump mapping and subdivision.
  • Procedurals, with sample Alembic and mandelbulb implementations.
  • Accurate motion blur (transform, deform, velocity, acceleration), overridable per object.
  • Geometry attributes translation as user data.
  • Optional Arnold properties for objects and cameras.
  • Render to AOVs, in single or separate files.
  • Support all Houdini rendering contexts (render region, mplay, render viewer, render COP, batch), with support for AOVs and clickable buckets.
  • Interactive rendering (IPR) allows parameter changes to be rapidly previewed without interrupting your work.
  • Instancing.
  • Multi-camera renders.
  • DeepEXR support.

 

katana iconArnold for Katana

Arnold for Katana (or KtoA) provides a bridge to the Arnold renderer from within the standard Katana interface. KtoA is now shipping with the latest Arnold 5.0 core.

Features

  • Natural integration with Katana nodes, scenegraph, and scripting.
  • Multi-threaded scene translation, made possible by Geolib3 in Katana 2+.
  • Bundled Arnold, shaders, and plugins for a smooth out-of-the-box experience.
  • Support for the latest Arnold 5.0.x series.
  • Improved interactivity for live rendering (IPR) allows look changes to be rapidly previewed.
  • Ultra-fast OpenVDB volume rendering.
  • Shader networks.
  • Works with third-party shaders and renderer procedurals (for hair, etc).
  • Render outputs and AOVs, including Deep EXR.
  • Supports the curves location type in Katana for hair rendering.
  • Many light types and light filters supported, as well as interactive modification of lights.
  • Object parameters and global options better match what is available in Arnold.
  • Improved documentation within Katana (args files).

 

3ds max iconArnold for 3ds Max

Provides a beautiful interface to our photorealistic renderer within Autodesk’s 3ds Max.  Launched at SIGGRAPH 2016 and now with Arnold 5.0, Arnold for 3ds Max (or MAXtoA) is bundled standard with 3ds Max 2018, providing a bridge to the Arnold renderer from within the standard 3ds Max interface.

Features

  • Integration with 3ds Max shapes, cameras, lights and shaders.
  • Image Based Lighting support, including a state of the art physical sky.
  • 3ds Max ActiveShade interactive rendering allows parameter changes to be rapidly previewed without interrupting your work.
  • Support for AOVs & Deep EXR files.
  • Defer the creation of geometry at render time with the Procedural placeholder nodes.
  • Texturable Mesh lights.
  • 3rd Party Arnold shader support.
  • MAXtoA Cloud Rendering for stills and animations. Users can join the optional Autodesk ‘Render Pilot’ program, which now supports MAXtoA.

 

softimage iconArnold for Softimage

A comprehensive and tailored interface to Arnold within Autodesk’s Softimage. Arnold for Softimage (or SItoA) provides a bridge to the Arnold renderer from within the standard Softimage interface.

Features

  • Seamless integration with Softimage shapes, lights (selective lights) passes and render region.
  • Full ICE support (particles, strand and geometry) with advanced instancing functionality.
  • Native Softimage render tree and shader support.
  • Stand-ins with realtime view representation.
  • Productivity boost: passes, overrides, UDIM style textures.
  • Full Alembic integration via Exocortex Crate.
  • Texturable geometric lights.
  • Deep EXR.

 

Host Compatibility and Requirements

Maya

  • Compatible with Maya 2015, 2016, 2016 Ext2, and 2017
  • Windows 7 and later
  • Linux RHEL6 equivalent (glibc 2.12) and later
  • Mac OS X 10.8 and later
  • CPU with at least SSE 4.1 instructions (2006 and later Intel CPUs, and 2011 and later AMD CPUs)

Cinema 4D

  • Compatible with Cinema 4D R16, R17, and R18 (all products except Lite)
  • Windows 7 and later
  • Mac OS X 10.8 and later
  • No GPU or graphics card requirements
  • CPU with at least SSE 4.1 instructions (2006 and later Intel CPUs, and 2011 and later AMD CPUs)

Houdini

  • Houdini, Houdini FX, Houdini Indie or Houdini Education (Houdini Apprentice is not supported)
  • Windows 7 and later
  • Linux RHEL6 equivalent (glibc 2.12) and later
  • Mac OS X 10.8 and later
  • CPU with at least SSE 4.1 instructions (2006 and later Intel CPUs, and 2011 and later AMD CPUs)

Katana

  • Compatible with Katana 2.5
  • Linux RHEL6 equivalent (glibc 2.12) and later
  • Windows 7+ with VC++ 2015 redistributable
  • CPU with at least SSE 4.1 instructions available

3ds Max

  • Compatible with Max 2018
  • Windows 7 and later
  • CPU with at least SSE 4.1

Softimage

  • Compatible with 64-bit Softimage 2013, 2014 and 2015
  • Windows 7 and later
  • Linux RHEL6 equivalent (glibc 2.12) and later
  • CPU with at least SSE 4.1 instructions (2006 and later Intel CPUs, and 2011 and later AMD CPUs)

 

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