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Xenon Lightmap HDR Light Studio Pro

Review:

Lightmap HDR Light Studio Pro
   

The fastest way to perfect lighting

Create the perfect HDRI lighting in minutes with HDR Light Studio Pro. Lighting shots are now fast, precise and easy. Simply click on the model to position lights on a live HDRI map.

HDR Light Studio software provides 3D artists with a new way to light 3D imagery. Paint your shot with lights. The lighting process is now easy, fast, precise, creative and enjoyable. HDR Light Studio builds lighting that is used by your existing 3D software and renderer. By adding HDR Light Studio, 3D artists become more productive and image quality improves.

Frustrated with your 3D lighting process?

HDR Light Studio will dramatically improve the way you light:

  • Easily and quickly light your 3D models to a very high standard
  • Enjoy a more creative and flexible lighting process
  • Meet your deadlines and produce higher value images

Lighting should be fun

Lighting is one of the most creative opportunities for a 3D artist, it can transform the look of your render.

Don’t be held back by the limitations of your current lighting tools and content. Become a lighting master.

A Lighting Standard

HDR Light Studio has now helped thousands of commercial 3D artists, world-wide, to speed up the lighting process and produce better quality renders. It has become an industry standard over the last 10 years and we work closely with our partners to create plug-in connections to: 3ds Max, Maya, Cinema 4D, MODO, Houdini and many more.

Xenon Release – New Blender connection

This new HDR Light Studio release includes new features for Blender, Octane Render Standalone and 3ds Max/V-Ray 5 users. This release also lays the foundation for improving the performance of all our connections, with the development of a new faster API.

hdr light studio examples
Images lit with HDR Light Studio

HDR Light Studio transforms your lighting workflow:

  • Studio Lighting
  • Lighting to match a back-plate image
  • Adding lights/adjustments to existing HDRI maps

Creative Benefits:

  • Fast
    • Craft lighting to a higher level
    • Explore more lighting treatments
  • User-Friendly
    • Puts the art back into lighting
    • Easy to use with real-time feedback
  • Accurate
    • Precisely position lighting and reflections on 3D models

Commercial Benefits:

  • Cost Effective
    • Increase productivity – light shots in minutes not hours
    • Image-based lighting can significantly reduce render times
    • Works with your existing hardware/software
  • Improve Quality
    • HDR lighting raises image quality to the next level

HDR Light Studio Pro Features

Anatomy of HDR Light Studio

hdr light studio anatomy

HDR Light Studio’s real-time lighting interface provides the tools and lighting content you need to take your images to the next level.

Light Sources: Procedural

HDR Light Studio is best known for creating studio lighting – especially suited to reflective materials.
Procedural lights can be precisely controlled and positioned to create a wide variety of lighting effects.

hdr light studio light sources

HDR Light Studio procedural content includes: Bulb, Linear and Radial Gradients, and Box Gradient (a blended horizontal and vertical ramp).

Light Sources: Images

For the most realistic lighting effects – load HDR images as light sources in HDR Light Studio.
Image based light sources bring high levels of realism with subtle details and imperfections seen in reflections.

hdr light studio pro images

 

Lighting Content

HDR Light Studio includes a huge library of high quality HDR content to use in your lighting designs.

Render View & LightPaint

The Render View is a key feature of HDR Light Studio’s lighting interface.
Lights are positioned by clicking and dragging on the Render View – we call this patented process LightPaint.

HDR Light Studio loads Alembic, FBX*, Collada file formats.
*Windows OS only

HDRI Area Lights

HDR Area lights are created and controlled in real-time in your 3D software as you work in HDR Light Studio. Light geometry, shaders and HDR RGBA image content is all updated on the fly via the connection.

area lights

HDR Area Lights are compatible with 3ds Max, Maya, Cinema 4D, MODO, VRED, Houdini and Octane Render Standalone Connections.

Handles Huge Scenes

The Render View and LightPaint remain fast even with huge scenes.

Matching Photography

When blending photography and CG imagery, matching the lighting between the photographic content and the CG elements is key to a successful and believable image. If a HDRI map of the location has not been captured then a lighting setup needs building from scratch. HDR Light Studio makes this process easy and enabling the rapid creation of a suitable lighting environment.

hdr light studio Pro photography

Enhancing Reality

When reality isn’t enough. Load HDRI maps shot on location and add additional light sources to bring your subject to life.
Just like on a real photoshoot, beauty lights are added to make your subject the star of the show.

hdr light studio pro enhancing reality

Procedural Sky

HDR Light Studio includes a procedural sky shader. Replace the sky on an existing HDRI map and use an alpha ramp to control the horizon position and softness. Drag and drop the included Cloud preset images onto the sky for added realism. The sun disc can be increased in size whilst maintaining its overall lighting contribution, allowing for creative decisions about the sun scale. The sun disc has a controllable soft edge.

Mix Up Your Maps

Load more than one HDRI map into HDR Light Studio and use the alpha ramp to blend between them. Use saturation adjustments and color filtering, via blend modes, to take control of color and create a better match. Enabling you to get more out of your existing HDRI collection.

hdr light studio mix up your maps

More than Lights

The HDR Canvas is a compositor for HDR and LDR content, supporting a range of image formats, mappings and blend modes.

hdr light studio pro more than lights

Lights are not limited to representing light sources. A light can be a loaded HDRI map background or an additional cloud added to the sky.

The procedural light sources are very useful when combined with blend modes. Allowing precise local adjustments of color and brightness on the HDRI map – shaping the lighting effect.

Portable Lighting

HDRI maps are the ultimate portable lighting format. They can be used with different renderers and produce predictable and accurate results. Especially with physically based rendering.

hdr light studio portable

When implementing the new Area Lights feature, we ensured these lights were portable too. For example, you can create a lighting design in Maya for Arnold Render (using a HDRI map with Area Lights) and then switch renderers to V-Ray, the Area Lights will be rebuilt using V-Ray lights. You can also light a shot in Cinema 4D with Arnold, and load the same lighting design into Maya with Maxwell Render to get the exact same lighting.

Industry Standards

VFX artists will be pleased to know HDR Light Studio has progressed to embrace some industry standards.

HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO color management and supports loading Alembic scene files. In order to efficiently handle very large image files, HDR Light Studio will automatically convert image files to mip-mapped and tiled images, saving them as .tx files. When using .tx files, HDR Light Studio only loads the image resolution and area needed – this vastly improves image load times and performance.

Use Standalone or Connected

HDR Light Studio can be used standalone – load a 3D scene and produce the perfect HDRI map.

OR

hdr connections

Connect HDR Light Studio with your 3D software and Renderer. Lighting is built and updated live within your 3D software as you light with HDR Light Studio.

Connections are available for:

  • 3ds Max
  • Maya
  • Cinema 4D
  • Modo
  • VRED
  • DELTAGEN
  • Rhino
  • SOLIDWORKS Visualize
  • LightWave3D
  • Houdini
  • Maxwell Studio
  • Blender
  • Octane Render Standalone

Learn more about connections in the Details tab.

hdri light studio screen

 

Licenses Explained

A node-locked license is for one user and allows HDR Light Studio to run on a designated primary computer, and a designated second home/laptop computer if required (by using the license transfer facility on our web site).

A floating license is for multiple users and allows one concurrent session of HDR Light Studio to run on any computer on the local network. You need to purchase licenses for the number of concurrent users you will require. A computer on the network runs the RLM server software and client machines get their licenses from this computer via the local network.

An annual subscription provides a license that will expire at the end of the 1 year period. During the subscription period you can run the latest software and you are entitled to support. Renewal is not automatic and we do not store card details.

A permanent license does not expire. It includes 1 year of maintenance – providing software updates and support. At the end of this period, additional maintenance can be purchased in order to keep your software up to date and to continue to be supported.

HDR Light Studio Comparison Chart

 IndieProAutomotive
Revenue under $100KRevenue over $100KAccess to VRED, DeltaGen, Patchwork3D
HDR Light Studio
Included connections:
3dsMax, Maya, Cinema 4D, MODO, Lighwave3D, Houdini, Blender, Maxwell Studio, Rhino, Octane Standaline, SOLIDWORKS Visualize
Included connections:
VRED, DeltaGen, Patchwork 3D
Priority Support
Support Channelsemailemailemail, phone, web meetings
Nodelocked – Single User
Annual Subscription
Nodelocked – Single User
Permanent
Floating – Multi-User
Annual Subscription

Features:

Anatomy of HDR Light Studio

anatomy

HDR Light Studio provides a unique real-time lighting interface and includes a wealth of procedural and image based lighting content.

Light Sources: Procedural

HDR Light Studio is best known for creating studio lighting – especially suited to reflective materials. Procedural lights can be precisely controlled and positioned to create a wide variety of lighting effects.

lightmap procedural

Light Sources: Images

For the most realistic lighting effects – load HDR images as light sources in HDR Light Studio. Image based light sources bring high levels of realism with subtle details and imperfections seen in reflections.

images

Includes a Library of Light Sources

HDR Light Studio includes a library of over 200 high quality HDR photographs of soft boxes, spot lights, windows and even clouds. View a PDF Brochure of all Preset Lights included with HDR Light Studio.

HDR light studio presets
Over 50 studio lights

HDR light studio
Softboxes and umbrellas

HDR light studio presets 3
Miscellaneous lighting

HDR Light Studio ships with many high dynamic range images of real lights – softboxes, reflectors, flourescent strip lights,
incandescent bulbs and more.

Render View & LightPaint

The Render View is a key feature of HDR Light Studio’s lighting interface.  Lights are positioned by clicking and dragging on the Render View – we call this patented process LightPaint.

HDR Light Studio loads Alembic, FBX*, Collada and MI file formats.
*Windows OS only

Area Lights

Area Lights are controlled with LightPaint and are compatible with 3ds Max, Maya, Cinema 4D, MODO and Houdini.

area lights

Area lights are created and controlled in real-time in your 3D software, for your chosen 3D renderer, as you work in HDR Light Studio. This includes creating the light geometry, appropriate shaders and mapping the RGBA image content onto the light.

Handles Huge Scenes

The Render View and LightPaint remain fast even with huge scenes.

Matching Photography

When blending photography and CG imagery, matching the lighting between the photographic content and the CG elements is key to a successful and believable image. If a HDRI map of the location has not been captured then a lighting setup needs building from scratch. HDR Light Studio makes this process easy and enabling the rapid creation of a suitable lighting environment.

matching photography

Enhancing Reality

When reality isn’t enough. Load HDRI maps shot on location and add additional light sources to bring your subject to life. Just like on a real photoshoot, beauty lights are added to make your subject the star of the show.

enhancing reality

Procedural Sky

HDR Light Studio includes a procedural sky shader. Replace the sky on an existing HDRI map and use an alpha ramp to control the horizon position and softness. Drag and drop the included Cloud preset images onto the sky for added realism. The sun disc can be increased in size whilst maintaining its overall lighting contribution, allowing for creative decisions about the sun scale. The sun disc has a controllable soft edge.

procedural sky

Mix Up Your Maps

Load more than one HDRI map into HDR Light Studio and use the alpha ramp to blend between them. Use saturation adjustments and color filtering, via blend modes, to take control of color and create a better match. Enabling you to get more out of your existing HDRI collection.

maps

More than Lights

The HDR Canvas is a compositor for HDR and LDR content, supporting a range of image formats, mappings and blend modes.

more than lights

Lights are not limited to representing light sources. A light can be a loaded HDRI map background or an additional cloud added to the sky.  The procedural light sources are very useful when combined with blend modes. Allowing precise local adjustments of color and brightness on the HDRI map – shaping the lighting effect.

Portable Lighting

HDRI maps are the ultimate portable lighting format. They can be used with different renderers and produce predictable and accurate results. Especially with physically based rendering.

portable lighting

When implementing the new Area Lights feature, we ensured these lights were portable too. For example, you can create a lighting design in Maya for Arnold Render (using a HDRI map with Area Lights) and then switch renderers to V-Ray, the Area Lights will be rebuilt using V-Ray lights. You can also light a shot in Cinema 4D with Arnold, and load the same lighting design into Maya with Maxwell Render to get the exact same lighting.

Industry Standards

VFX artists will be pleased to know HDR Light Studio has progressed to embrace some industry standards.

HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO color management and supports loading Alembic scene files. In order to efficiently handle very large image files, HDR Light Studio will automatically convert image files to mip-mapped and tiled images, saving them as .tx files. When using .tx files, HDR Light Studio only loads the image resolution and area needed – this vastly improves image load times and performance.


Connections

Connect your 3D application to HDR Light Studio.

3ds Max

How does HDR Light Studio work with 3ds Max?

The model has materials assigned, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

1. Start HDR Light Studio from the 3ds Max plug-in
2. Export the 3ds Max scene into HDR Light Studio’s live 3D view
3. Paint your shot with lights in HDR Light Studio (Lights are automatically created in 3ds Max as you light)
4. (Optional) Start ActiveShade in 3ds Max and see the results as you light
5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates high-res HDRI images for your lights
6. The completed 3ds Max scene is now ready for rendering locally, or on a farm

Key Features

  • Our 3ds Max plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • 3ds Max’s IPR in HDR Light Studio UI for Light Painting
  • Export your scene into HDR Light Studio’s live Render View
  • Click and drag on the Render View to position lights with live feedback
  • Create and edit HDRI maps in real-time
  • Create and position 3D HDRI Area Lights/Emitters in real-time
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • Lighting in 3ds Max is kept in sync with HDR Light Studio as you work
  • HDR Light Studio project is stored in the 3ds Max scene file
  • HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO Color Management
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes
  • Ideal lighting solution for Physically Based Rendering – Photoreal Results

Compatibility

  • 3ds Max 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020

Maya

How does HDR Light Studio work with Maya?

The model has materials assigned, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

1. Start HDR Light Studio from the Maya plug-in
2. Export the Maya scene into HDR Light Studio’s live 3D view
3. Paint your shot with lights in HDR Light Studio (Lights are automatically created in Maya as you light)
4. (Optional) Start interactive rendering in Maya and see the results as you light
5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates high-res HDRI images for your lights
6. The completed Maya scene is now ready for rendering locally, or on a farm

Key Features

  • Our Maya 4D plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Maya’s IPR in HDR Light Studio UI for Light Painting
  • Export your scene into HDR Light Studio’s live Render View
  • Click and drag on the Render View to position lights with live feedback
  • Create and edit HDRI maps in real-time
  • Create and position 3D HDRI Area Lights/Emitters in real-time
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Lighting in Maya is kept in sync with HDR Light Studio as you work
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the Maya scene
  • HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO Color Management
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes
  • Ideal lighting solution for Physically Based Rendering – Photoreal Results

Compatibility

  • Maya 2016.5, 2017, 2018, 2019

Cinema 4D

How does HDR Light Studio work with Cinema 4D?

The model has materials assigned, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

1. Start HDR Light Studio from the Cinema 4D plug-in
2. Export the Cinema 4D scene into HDR Light Studio’s live 3D view
3. Paint your shot with lights in HDR Light Studio (Lights are automatically created in Cinema 4D as you light)
4. (Optional) Start interactive rendering in Cinema 4D and see the results as you light
5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates high-res HDRI images for your lights
6. The completed Cinema 4D scene is now ready for rendering locally, or on a farm

Key Features

  • Our Cinema 4D plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Export your scene into HDR Light Studio’s live Render View
  • Click and drag on the Render View to position lights with live feedback
  • Create and edit HDRI maps in real-time
  • Create and position 3D HDRI Area Lights/Emitters in real-time
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • Lighting in Cinema 4D is kept in sync with HDR Light Studio as you work
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the Cinema 4D scene
  • HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO Color Management
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes
  • Ideal lighting solution for Physically Based Rendering – Photoreal Results

Compatibility

  • Cinema 4D 17,18, 19, 20

Modo

How does HDR Light Studio work with MODO?

The model has materials assigned, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

1. Start HDR Light Studio from the MODO plug-in
2. Export the MODO scene into HDR Light Studio’s live 3D view
3. Paint your shot with lights in HDR Light Studio (Lights are automatically created in MODO as you light)
4. (Optional) Start interactive rendering in MODO and see the results as you light
5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates high-res HDRI images for your lights
6. The completed MODO scene is now ready for rendering locally, or on a farm

Key features

  • Our MODO plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Export your scene into HDR Light Studio’s live Render View
  • Click and drag on the Render View to position lights with live feedback
  • Create and edit HDRI maps in real-time
  • Create and position 3D HDRI Area Lights/Emitters in real-time
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • Lighting in MODO is kept in sync with HDR Light Studio as you work
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the Cinema 4D scene
  • HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO Color Management
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes
  • Ideal lighting solution for Physically Based Rendering – Photoreal Results

Compatibility

  • MODO 13, 12, 11, 10

VRED (only available in Automotive version)

How does HDR Light Studio work with VRED?

The model has materials applied, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

  1. Start HDR Light Studio from the VRED environment
  2. Load an existing HDRI map to edit, or start with a blank canvas
  3. Add a new lights in HDR Light Studio
  4. Click on the 3D model in VRED to position lights
  5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates a high-res HDRI map for the VRED environment
  6. The VRED scene is now ready for final rendering

Key Features

  • VRED has integrated HDR Light Studio support
  • Light your shots using HDR Light Studio’s interactive HDRI map
  • Click on the 3D model in VRED to position lights on the HDRI map
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the VRED scene
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scene

Compatibility

  • VRED 2017, 2018, 2019 (Windows only)

DeltaGen (only available in Automotive version)

How does HDR Light Studio work with DeltaGen?

The model has materials applied, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

  1. Start HDR Light Studio from the DeltaGen local surrounding
  2. Load an existing HDRI map to edit, or start with a blank canvas
  3. Add a new lights in HDR Light Studio
  4. Click on the 3D model in DeltaGen to position lights
  5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates a high-res HDRI map for DeltaGen
  6. The DeltaGen scene is now ready for final rendering

Key Features

  • Our DeltaGen plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Light your DeltaGen render with an interactive HDRI map
  • Click on the 3D model in DeltaGen to position lights on the HDRI map
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • HDR Light Studio project is stored in the DeltaGen scene file
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes

Compatibility

  • DELTAGEN 2019x (DELTAGEN STAGE 2019x)
  • DELTAGEN 2018x (DELTAGEN STAGE 2018x), 2018, 2017, 13.1

Rhino

How does HDR Light Studio work with Rhino?

The model has materials applied, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

  1. Start HDR Light Studio from the Rhino environment
  2. Load an existing HDRI map to edit, or start with a blank canvas
  3. Add a new lights in HDR Light Studio
  4. Click on the 3D model in Rhino to position lights
  5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates a high-res HDRI map for the Rhino environment
  6. The Rhino scene is now ready for final rendering

Key Features

  • Our Rhino plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Light your shots using HDR Light Studio’s interactive HDRI map
  • Click on the 3D model in Rhino to position lights on the HDRI map
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the Rhino scene
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes

Compatibility

  • Rhino 5 (Windows only)
  • Rhino 6 (BETA VERSION) (Windows only)

SOLIDWORKS Visualize

How does HDR Light Studio work with SOLIDWORKS Visualize?

The model has materials applied, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

  1. Start HDR Light Studio from the SOLIDWORKS Visualize environment
  2. Load an existing HDRI map to edit, or start with a blank canvas
  3. Add a new lights in HDR Light Studio
  4. Click on the 3D model in SOLIDWORKS Visualize to position lights
  5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates a high-res HDRI map for the SOLIDWORKS Visualize environment
  6. The SOLIDWORKS Visualize scene is now ready for final rendering

Key Features

  • SOLIDWORKS Visualize has integrated HDR Light Studio support
  • Light your shots using HDR Light Studio’s interactive HDRI map
  • Click on the 3D model in SOLIDWORKS Visualize to position lights on the HDRI map
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the SOLIDWORKS Visualize scene
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes

Compatibility

  • SOLIDWORKS Visualize 2016 (Standard and Pro) – SP1
  • SOLIDWORKS Visualize 2017 (Standard and Pro) – SP0 and above
  • SOLIDWORKS Visualize 2018 (Standard and Pro)

Lightwave3D

How does HDR Light Studio work with LightWave3D?

The model has materials assigned, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

1. Start HDR Light Studio from the LightWave3D plug-in
2. Export the LightWave3D scene into HDR Light Studio’s live 3D view
3. Paint your shot with lights in HDR Light Studio (The HDRI map updates in LightWave3D as you light)
4. (Optional) Start interactive rendering in LightWave3D and see the results as you light
5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates a high-res HDR for your environment light
6. The completed LightWave3D scene is now ready for rendering locally, or on a farm

Key Features

  • Our LightWave plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Click on the 3D model in LightWave to position lights on the HDRI map
  • Light your shots using HDR Light Studio’s interactive HDRI map
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the LightWave scene
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes
  • HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO Color Management

Compatibility

  • LightWave 3D 2015, 2018, 2019

Houdini

How does HDR Light Studio work with Houdini?

The model has materials assigned, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

1. Start HDR Light Studio using the HDR Light Studio node attached to an Environment light in Houdini
2. Export the Houdini scene into HDR Light Studio’s live 3D view
3. Paint your shot with lights in HDR Light Studio (The HDRI map updates in Houdini as you light)
4. (Optional) Start interactive rendering in Houdini and see the results as you light
5. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates a high-res HDR file for your environment light
6. The completed Houdini scene is now ready for rendering locally, or on a farm

Key Features

  • Our Houdini plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Export your scene into HDR Light Studio’s live Render View
  • Click and drag on the Render View to position lights with live feedback
  • Light your Houdini render with an interactive HDRI map
  • Create and position 3D HDRI Area Lights/Emitters in real-time
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • Lighting in Houdini is kept in sync with HDR Light Studio as you work
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the Houdini scene
  • HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO Color Management
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes
  • Ideal lighting solution for Physically Based Rendering – Photoreal Results

Compatibility

  • Houdini 15.5, 16, 16.5, 17, 17.5

Blender

How does HDR Light Studio work with Blender?

The model has materials assigned, the camera view is set up, you are now ready to light…

  1. Start HDR Light Studio from the added controls in Blender
  2. Press Play – the Blender scene is exported and rendered in HDR Light Studio
  3. Paint your shot with lights in HDR Light Studio (Lights are automatically created in Blender as you light)
  4. Use interactive rendering in Blender to see the lighting with your shaders
  5. Finish – HDR Light Studio generates high-res HDRI images for your lights
  6. The completed Blender scene is now ready for rendering

Key Features

  • Live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Paint Light Positions
  • Live HDRI Creation
  • Live HDRI Editing
  • Live 3D HDR Area Lights
  • Library of HDR Light Captures
  • Manage HDRIs / Save Light Rigs
  • Live Project Sync

Creates lighting compatible with both Cycles and Eevee

Compatibility + RequirementsCertified for Blender 2.83 (LTS) – Windows, MacOS and Linux
For newer versions of Blender, try before purchase.
Supported Renderers: Cycles and Eevee

Blender Add-on is compatible with HDR Light Studio – Xenon release and higher
Blender Add-on is included with Indie, Pro and Automotive licenses

Software delivery via internet download
Internet connection required for license activation only
HDR Light Studio software requires approx. 200MB disc space
Preset light content requires approx. 8GB disc space
CPU based, no special graphics card required

Maxwell Studio

How does HDR Light Studio work with Maxwell Studio?

The model has materials applied, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

  1. Start HDR Light Studio from the Maxwell Studio environment
  2. Load an existing HDRI map to edit, or start with a blank canvas
  3. Start Maxwell Studio’s FIRE render view
  4. Add a new light to the HDRI map in HDR Light Studio
  5. The FIRE render view updates instantly as changes are made in HDR Light Studio
  6. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates a high-res HDRI map for the environment
  7. The Maxwell Studio scene is now ready for final rendering

Key Features

  • Maxwell Studio has integrated HDR Light Studio support
  • Light your shots using HDR Light Studio’s interactive HDRI map
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the Cinema 4D scene
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes
  • HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO Color Management

Compatibility

  • Maxwell Studio 3.2, 4 (Windows only)

Octane Render Standalone

How does HDR Light Studio work with Octane Render Standalone?

The model has materials assigned, the camera view is setup, you are now ready to light…

1. Start HDR Light Studio from the Octane standalone plug-in
2. Press the Play button on the Render View to see the Octane rendered image inside HDR Light Studio
3. Paint your shot with lights in HDR Light Studio (Lighting is automatically updated in Octane as you light)
4. To finish, HDR Light Studio generates high-res HDRI images for your lights
5. The completed Octane scene is now ready for rendering

Key Features

  • Our Octane plug-in creates a live link with HDR Light Studio
  • Octane’s IPR in HDR Light Studio UI for Light Painting
  • Create and edit HDRI maps in real-time
  • Create and position 3D HDRI Area Lights/Emitters in real-time
  • Light Types: Procedural, image based and procedural sky
  • Includes a large library of HDRI light source captures
  • The HDR Light Studio lighting project is stored in the Octane scene
  • HDR Light Studio uses OpenColorIO Color Management
  • HDR Light Studio can be used Standalone: Loads Alembic and Collada scenes
  • Ideal lighting solution for Physically Based Rendering – Photoreal Results

Compatibility

  • Octane Standalone for Windows version 3.08.1 & 4

Licenses Explained

A node-locked license is for one user and allows HDR Light Studio to run on a designated primary computer, and a designated second home/laptop computer if required (by using the license transfer facility on our web site).

A floating license is for multiple users and allows one concurrent session of HDR Light Studio to run on any computer on the local network. You need to purchase licenses for the number of concurrent users you will require. A computer on the network runs the RLM server software and client machines get their licenses from this computer via the local network.

An annual subscription provides a license that will expire at the end of the 1 year period. During the subscription period you can run the latest software and you are entitled to support. Renewal is not automatic and we do not store card details.

A permanent license does not expire. It includes 1 year of maintenance – providing software updates and support. At the end of this period, additional maintenance can be purchased in order to keep your software up to date and to continue to be supported.

 

Requirements

  • Software delivery via internet download
  • Internet connection required for license activation
  • HDR Light Studio software requires approx. 200MB disc space
  • Preset light content requires approx. 7GB disc space
  • CPU based, no special graphics card required
  • Compatible with Windows, MacOS and Linux
  • Connections compatibility with 3D software/renderers – please check here: https://www.lightmap.co.uk/hdrlightstudio/connections/

System Requirements

  • Windows: 7, 8, 8.1, 10
  • Mac OS: 10.12.0 (Sierra)  or later
  • Linux: Certified against: Scientific Linux 7.2
  • Compatible with: Centos 7, Fedora 19+ (not 27 though), Ubuntu 13.10+, Mint 16+, Debian 8+, OpenSUSE 13.2+

Connection Requirements:

  • 3ds Max – 2019, 2020, 2021 – Plug-in build 2020.0814 (updated)
  • Blender – 2.83 (LTS), May work with newer versions, test prior to purchase – Plug-in build 2020.0828 (New)
  • Cinema 4D – 19, 20, 21.115 or higher, 22 – Plug-in build 2019.1212
  • DeltaGen – 2017, 2018, 2019 (and the x-builds), 2020 (and the x-builds)  – Plug-in build 2020.0319
  • Houdini – 17, 17.5, 18 – Plug-in build 2020.0218
  • Maya – 2018, 2019, 2020 – Plug-in build 2020.0302
  • MODO – 11, 12, 13, 14 (Windows and OSX) – Plug-in build 2019.0710
  • LightWave 3D – 2018, 2019, 2020 – Plug-in build 2019.1212
  • Rhino 5 (Windows only) – Plug-in build 2018.0206
  • Rhino 6 (Windows only) – Plug-in build 2019.0624
  • Octane Standalone: 2020 (Windows only) , Plug-in build 2020.0805 (updated)

 

What’s new in Xenon (Released September 2020)

This new HDR Light Studio release includes new features for Blender, Octane Render Standalone and 3ds Max/V-Ray 5 users. However, the work done for this release has laid the foundations for improving the performance of all our connections in the future, with the development of a new faster TCP/IP based API.

New Blender Connection

We are proud to release our new Blender Connection. This brand new connection is the big new feature in our Xenon Drop 1 release. This Blender Add-on is a free addition for existing Indie, Pro and Automotive customers with active Subscriptions or Maintenance. Visit our Blender Connection web page for more details. Documentation for the new Blender Connection can be found here.

New API

We have developed a new TCP/IP based API (Application Programming Interface) for HDR Light Studio. This new API is significantly faster, providing a far more responsive lighting experience for the 3D artist. The first connections to use the new API are the new Blender Connection and the Octane Render Standalone Connection. We are aiming to port other connections to use the new API, where applicable, in future connection updates.

Octance Standalone Connection

This connection has been updated to use the new TCP/IP based API in HDR Light Studio.

3ds Max Connection

Support for V-Ray 5 added.
Fix added to deal with username paths with non ASCII characters. See here for details on how to implement this.

Notable Bug Fixes

Mouse Up event were not being passed to host 3D app when using LightPaint.

What’s new in Tungsten (Drop 4), released April 2020

One of the most underrated features in HDR Light Studio is the Presets system. A wealth of high-quality lighting content and settings are included out of the box (over 1,000 presets including 398 images). Plus you can easily add your own HDRI maps and lighting imagery to this library too – making HDR Light Studio the ideal place to store all of your lighting content.

In this release, we have given the Presets system some more love – allowing you to manage user presets, filter your favorites and apply presets to the lighting designs in new ways that save you time.

To coincide with the release, we have just released over 70 minutes of in-depth training, so you can master Presets. There is so much more to Presets than the default studio light sources. The new training is available on our Learn page.

Plus as usual, this release also includes updated compatibility.

Preset System Enhancements

Manage User Presets
HDR Light Studio users have been able to save their own ‘User Presets’ since the Carbon Drop 3 release. However there has been no method for managing these until now. Tungsten Drop 4 introduces a new User Preset Management panel that is opened using Edit > Manage User Presets. In this panel the user can Edit the Description and Tags for a user Preset, and also Delete user presets.

User Preset Management Panel

Favorite Presets
A user can right click on a Preset and select ‘Add to Favorites’ or ‘Remove From Favorites’. You can then filter to view only your favorite presets using the heart button. This saves a lot of time hunting through lists of lights when you know the ones you like to use often.

Favorite Presets

Replace all lights with a Rig Preset
Right click on a rig preset and select – Replace Lights with Rig, to delete all current lights and add the rig lights. A much faster way to audition different lighting rigs.

Replace Lights with Rig

Hover on a Preset for a larger preview
You can now hover over a Preset Thumbnail and a larger preview will appear that includes additional useful information about the preset. For example, pixel resolution on images, mapping used on lights etc. Images are now shown at the correct aspect ratio on Presets.

Hover for Larger Preset Thumbnail

Improved workflows with Content and Element Presets
You can now create new lights directly from all ‘Content’ and some ‘Element’ presets (where applicable). You will be asked if you want to make a 3D or Background Light.

New ways to create a lights

Area Light Toggle
New keyboard shortcut to toggle Area Light checkbox on 3D lights. CTRL + SPACE BAR (FN + CMD + SPACE BAR on MacOS). A big time saver!

Compatibility

Support added for:

  • Maya 2020
    Tested against: Redshift 2.6.51, V-Ray 4.30.001, Octane 2019.1.5 – 15.14, RenderMan 23.1, Arnold 4.0.1
  • MODO 14
  • Redshift 3 in Cinema 4D

Here is the updated Connections Features and Compatibility Chart PDF.

What else is new?

Enhancements:

Save Render View Images – This Project menu item has been updated to save out all Render Views as EXR files, both the internal and external rendered image when available.

Saving Render View Images during Production Render – Has been updated to save out all Render Views as PNG files with LUT baked into image.
HDR Light Studio ‘Project files’ are about 8 times smaller in file size in this release than previous versions. We now only save the active settings on each light in the project. Performance may be improved when used via a connection as a result.
The updated about box contains more information and a ‘Copy Details to Clipboard’ feature, which can provide our support team with useful information about your installation for trouble shooting.

HDR Light Studio Changes:

Reflection Fresnel settings have been simplified for HDR Light Studio’s Render View. Fresnel setting is now set using only an IOR setting. Removing the none physical approaches of ‘None’ and ‘Custom’.

Image Saturation and Gamma ‘up and down’ arrow button increments were too big and have been reduced to steps of 0.1. (Customer request)

Render Progress Bar is now orange – easier to notice when a render has completed. (Customer request)

Render View and Canvas tool settings are no longer stored within project files. This caused confusion when a scene loaded and the tools changed.

Color Profile (LUT) dropdowns can now accommodate wider LUT names. These were truncated and with ACES LUTS this made them hard to correctly identify and select.

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