MAX News Archive

Archived Plugin News  –  October 2002

New Plugin: Materials

This free 3dsmax r4/5 texture plugin is for simple chromakeying. It will selectively replace colors within a specified range of one texture with another.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v2.0 are:
- New TurnTool utility panel interface, for intuitive configuration
- 18% better compression of 3D geometry
- Support for FinalRender materials and textures
- Texture compression can be set individually per texture

Plugin Update: Materials

Changes for v1.1 are:
- Fixed a Track View crash when expanding keys of sub-textures
- Fixed a crash when changing category type in Material Editor
- Improved distribution of scratches

New Plugin: Renderers

The following description is taken from the finalToon site:
finalToon is a full blown True Line Renderer (TLR), with unparalleled line quality and rendering speed. Cartoon or line rendering scenes that take a long time to render within Max, are lightning fast in finalToon! Suddenly, you can render real fat outlines of an object without the wait and inaccurate dirty look of a shader based solution.
finalToon, being a TLR (true line renderer) doesn't mean that finalToon has to replace your favorite renderer to do shading or other special effects. finalToon is implemented as a true Max 'Render Effect', and so you can enjoy all the great benefits of such an implementation! You may adjust line styles in realtime without the need to re-render the whole scene over and over again. This is what we call 'The Choice of Quality'.
All shading and rendering is done with the production proven Max scanline renderer. When the scanline pass is done, the finalToon line renderer 'pops in' and takes over to produce one of the best line renderings available of today. And even better- finalToon supports perfectly finalRender with all the advanced options, including GI rendering for cartoon style objects!

finalToon is available for Max 4 and 5. The normal retail price is $495, but there is an introductory price offer available until the 1st of December of $295, a saving of $200.

Plugin Update: Render Effects

Changes for v1.1 are:
- Improved speed
- The code responsible for flares has been rewritten, and they now have nice, smooth edges

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v1.55 are:
- New enhancements
- Improved UI and menus
- Extensive Spline Editor scripting
- Max 5 support
- and more...

Plugin Update: Connection

Changes for v1.55 are:
- Enhanced support of the G2 digitizers
- New Surf-iT 3D modeling kit enhancements
- Improved performance
- Custom digitizer tip support
- Max 5 support
- and more...

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v1.09.02f are:
- A memory leak with V-RayDisplacementMod was fixed
- Transparent objects did not render properly with GI - fixed
- Three new keywords supported in the frame stamp: %cpu %ram %vmem %mhz
- 3d displacement mapping added
- A new option Check sample visibility added to the irradiance map parameters
- A new option Smooth surface shadows added to V-RayShadow and V-RayLight
- V-Ray will now check for missing map files and will put up a dialog box listing the missing files
- V-RayMtl has been added to the Basic version

New Plugin: Utilities

This is the Max 5 version of the ASCII exporter that shipped with previous max versions. Ascii Out was removed from the Max 5 SDK. However a few people have asked where it is, so it has been added back as a sparks download. Both source and binary are provided in the zip.

Plugin Update: Modifiers

Changes for Beta 0.4 are:
- Fixed a Bug that sometimes caused a crash while loading a scene containing the modifier.

New Plugin: Modifiers

UnRapper4 is a freeware clone of Max 5's UVW Unwrap tool - except it runs in Max 4.2 and above. The functionality is identical, but the menus and icons are a 'little' different. If you are stuck using Max 4.2 or you would like new uvw unwrap functionality in Max4.2, try this plugin out.

The author of the plugin is giving it away for free because he is confident you will come back to him for all your UV Editing needs. Be sure to check out the html doc before you start. Send him some feedback & feature requests!

Plugin News: Sneak preview from RebelThink

Rebel Think have posted some more information on upcoming plugins. This includes some images from their Natural:Snow and Natural:Sand shaders. You can read all about it on their Future page.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.151 are:
- Fixed a little printf bug in the ASCII exporter (%f => %d)
- Added a warning message when bounding sphere generation fails
- Improved robustness of bounding sphere generation
- New checkbox to make the difference between PHYSIQUE and SKIN modifiers
- Fixed a little bug in the SKIN export
- Fixed various bugs in ICE dlls
- Updated the NovodeX exporter (version 1.03)

Plugin News: New water plugin in development...

Rebel Think have put up a new site that showcases their upcoming plugin Natural:sea. The plugin set will be able to simulate ocean surfaces and underwater effects.

The plugins are currently in beta-testing, and will shortly be available for public testing. Full information is available here.

New Plugin: Renderers

V-Ray is an advanced raytracing system. This free version of the renderer includes support for reflections / refractions, indirect illumination (GI), depth of field, QMC sampler and various anti-aliasing routines.

New Plugin: Global Utilities

This utility provides a new Interface that gives access to the actual mesh used by the Radiosity Engine. This means you have direct access to the Vertex Colors used by the engine when it displays the solution in the viewport. The zip provides a sample maxscript and instructions on how to use this from a c++ plugin.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.15 are:
- First MAX5 version available
- Added user-defined frame conversion callbacks
- Pivot support has been totally rewritten (and improved)
- Explicit parent name has been added to base info
- The fileselect now handles complex extensions correctly
- Better handling of animated nodes
- Added GUI callbacks in custom exporters
- Added support for MAX primitives
- and loads more. The full list of changes is in the ZIP-file (News.pdf)

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for R1.5 are:
- Fixed crash on exit of Max 5 on some machines
- Duplicate cebas.dlu is now detected in most cases
- Plugins now check the version number of cebas.dlu
- Several crashes have been fixed caused by invoking the renderer with F9, F10 or SHIFT+Q
- Several tBaker bugs have been fixed
- tBaker Multiselect now works
- tBaker Error Log is created (in main maxlog)
- tBaker continues baking other objects on error
- Several shadow issues have been fixed
- DOF Min-Sample 4 Hang Error has been fixed
- Memory hole in luma is fixed

The update is available at the cebas family site.

Plugin News: VRay Free coming soon...

Chaos Group have announced the upcoming release of the free version of their VRay renderer.

This is from the press release: "Since the very beginning we promised we would have 3 different flavors of V-Ray: Advanced, Basic and Free. As we are coming to our next major release - 1.1 - we are feeling pretty much confident we will make it an even greater success so we are finally being able to give more attention to our free package. As far as I know we are one of the few to have a fully featured DEMO of our ray-tracing system without any features limitation. But the DEMO would not do any good for production. That is why, we are finally releasing the free V-Ray package for those users who would only need a basic ray-tracer with support for GI."

The free version of the renderer should be available sometime this week. You can read the whole press release here.

Plugin News: Renderers

Cebas have posted some information on the upcoming release of their finalRender Stage-1 plugin. Over the coming weeks, they will be releasing more information about the features and progress found in finalRender Stage-1.

You can find all of the information here.

Plugin Update: Modifiers

Changes for v1.06 are:
- UV coords were incorrect when normals flipped - Fixed
- Added control to set spline segments

The Max R3.x version is available here.

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v1.09.02e are:
- Some additional changes to the translucency algorithm
- Additional parameter 'Energy preservation mode' added to VRayMtl
- Global switches roll-up added
- A new parameter 'Interval center' was added to the motion blur parameters
- Fixed photon maps not working with VRay materials as submaterials
- The authorization dialog did not appear if VRay is not authorized

New Plugin: Materials

This free 3dsmax r4/5 texture plugin is for creating scratches and other subtle surface features for more photorealistic renders. It looks great when used as a bump map.

Plugin Update: MAXScript Extensions

Changes for v5.04 are:
- Adds the following functions: bit.intAsFloat, bit.floatAsInt, bit.swapBytes, hideByCategory structure

Plugin Update: Materials

Changes for v0.0.3 are:
- Fixed a problem with the 'texture' function that caused it to be very slow
- Fixed a problem that caused some large shaders to crash
- Fixed a problem that caused the MAXShade Map to crash in MAX 3
- All shaders should work with Brazil r/s now
- Displacement mapping is now supported, though with the same limitations of the MAX renderer
- Added extended ray tracing functions, compatible with BMRT's extended ray tracing functions
- Fixed a problem that caused shader names to conflict with function names

Plugin Update: Objects

Changes for v11.07.2001 are:
- This is just a minor patch to stop the plugin crashing max 5.