MAX News Archive

Archived Plugin News  –  January 2011

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v2.5.6 are:
- The arrangement of the Maxwell Fire window menu items is now the way it was in v2.5.3
- Changing a material no longer triggers an unnecessary revoxelization in Maxwell Fire
- Material previews and Maxwell Fire renders are now the same as the production render

The Maxwell 3ds Max plugins come with Maxwell Render, which is available for Max 7 to 2011 and costs €895. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Modifiers

Changes for v5.0 are:
- Adds support for Max 9 to 2011 (32-bit and 64-bit)

I've recompiled this plugin from the open-source code made available by pmG Worldwide. I've only been able to test the 32-bit versions using the messiah demo, so I don't actually know if the 64-bit versions work. If anyone could test this, please do let me know.

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v1.1.7 are:
- Fixes a bug which caused a crash with heavy pattern geometry

VRayPattern is available for Max 2008 to 2011 and costs €150.

New Plugin: Modelling

VRayPattern allows you to periodically multiply geometry without extra memory consumption. It works in a similar way to displacement mapping, but instead of using bitmaps or vector maps, VRayPattern can use the original geometry for propagation. It can sample any tiled geometry (or geometry with unobtrusive joints), and is best put to use where a huge amount of geometry is required, but without particular accuracy.

VRayPattern requires V-Ray 1.5 (SP2 and higher) or V-Ray 2.

VRayPattern is available for Max 2008 to 2011 and costs €150.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v2.8.46.0 are:
- Fixes an error with floating point values in the x64 version of the exporter
- Removed the 'meters' designator from the viewer measure axes
- Fixes a problem with spaces in object names in the TrackMask UI script for Max

Granny Exporter is available for Max 6 to 2011, and is part of the Granny Toolkit which costs $12500.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v0.98.9 Beta are:
- Adds support for V-Ray 2.0 and V-Ray RT
- Now includes the FlyThrough animation wizard
- Adds support for the SigerShaders optimisations
- Adds dynamic RAM management
- Adds support for the new LC 'Retrace Corners' option

SolidRocks is available for Max 9 to 2011 and costs €54. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v2.5.0 are:
- Adds renderer license management
- Net jobs now can have tags
- The log directory can now be set to a user-defined path
- Output filters now support custom script callback functions
- Output filters now support regular expressions
- You can now execute net job post-events on success and on failure
- The 'filter as you type' feature now has a small delay before updating
- Improved how the internal Python path is set
- Minor changes and bug-fixes
- Checking whether a directory exists now works for UNC paths
- Reduced flickering when filtering an event log
- Adds user groups
- The net job list can now be quickly filtered by their tags
- Net jobs can now be 'colored'
- Adds an option to net job frame checking to disable frame checking for subsequent jobs
- You can now quickly reset all erroneous chunks of a net job
- Adds 5 and 10 minutes to the 'Idle clients shutdown' menu
- Dramatically improved performance of the net job chunk list and client list
- Resetting all cancelled chunks of a net job now also resets their render attempts count
- Adding multiple user accounts is now easier
- Improved the coloring in the frames list of the manual frame checker window
- When dropping folders onto the scene list, files will now be added recursively
- The net job dialog now shows warnings if frame splitting cannot be applied
- The lists in the user management dialog now support multiple selections
- The custom idle clients shutdown time dialog now remembers the last entered value
- Fixes a crash if a pool or client was deleted while the net job dialog was open
- Resetting all cancalled chunks of a net job now updates the net job status properly
- The console remote controller can now query data from the server using -query
- Logging in with the graphical RC now updates the configuration file of the console RC
- The console RC now supports multiple presets
- The console remote controller no longer requests administrative system rights
- Made the console remote controller help output easier to read
- The toolbar for the client pool list now reflects the current user rights
- Fixes a minor commandline parsing bug in the console remote controller
- Adds an option to restart chunks on a client depending on CPU usage
- Deleting a net job remotely now adds an entry to the event log
- Cancelling a net job chunk will now reduce its attempts count
- Cancelled net jobs no longer count as pending when sending email status reports
- Placeholder values in Python net job events are now escaped
- Server has been updated to SQLite 3.7.3
- Fixes unnecessary chunk updates being sent when deleting a net job
- Fixes the '$(RenderSet.outfile_full)' net job event parameter
- The Linux and MacOSX clients now report the current CPU and memory statistics
- The client now logs the output of jobs into separate log files

RenderPal V2 is available for Max 9 to 2011 and costs €45. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v1.1.0 are:
- Fixes Garbage Collector problems
- The license calls to have been reduced to 1/15
- Adds a Scene3D autoDispose property
- Adds a Canvas3D showMenu property
- Adds a SphereCollision target property getter
- The Flare3D.swc library is now automatically added to the Flash CS5 library paths
- Fixes some other minor bugs

Flare3D is available for Max 2009 to 2011 and costs $496. A demo version is available here.

Plugin News: Agent demo video posted...

Geoff Samuel has posted a demo video showing some of the capabilities of his upcoming freeware crowd control plugin Agent.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v0.4 Beta 14092 are:
- Adds support for normal, specular and diffuse mapping
- Bug-fixes

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v1.3.0 include:
- Extra elements are prefixed with 'max_' to prevent violation of the COLLADA schema
- Fixes export of triangles with normal export disabled
- Adds the attribute 'bumptype' to distinguish between height fields and normal maps
- Texture map sets now start counting with 0 instead of 1
- Material instances are now written before geometry instances
- Adds support for import/export of different wrap modes in COLLADAMax
- Fixes material ID's not being respected in instances
- Fixes MeshPrimitive::getMaterial() returning an empty value
- Fixes performance issues with many materials
- Empty <extra> elements no longer get written in <profile_COMMON>
- Fixes material names getting an unnecessary '_1' suffix

New Plugin: Texturing

Material Presets Shop Standard is a scripted material collection for V-Ray and mental ray in Max. It includes 78 V-Ray and mental ray Material presets and templates:
- Metal Materials (24)
- Ceramics Materials (18)
- Leather Materials (12)
- Stone Materials (18)
- Concrete Materials (6)

The V-Ray materials are compatible with SolidRocks, and all of the textures used are seamless.

Material Presets Shop Standard is available for Max 2009 to 2011 and costs €30.

Plugin Update: Texturing

Changes for v2.1.1b are:
- Adds 146 new material presets and templates
- Adds support for SolidRocks
- A new license key is required

V-Ray Material Presets Pro is available for Max 2009 to 2011 and costs €75.

Plugin Updates: Import / Export

Cannonfodder has recompiled his SMD Importer and Exporter plugins for Max 9 and Max 2010, so they should work with Max 2008 and Max 2011 as well. Unfortunately, there are only 32-bit versions available.

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for Build are:
- Adds colorized mode support for Autodesk Revit 2011
- Adds 8 Nova templates for Visual Studio 2010 for enhancing features
- The mirror function can now be blurred with controls for intensity and level
- Fixes the double-click problem in Nova Control
- Fixes a problem with pickable objects in disabled companion scenes

Nova Studio 2010 Ultimate is available for Max 7 to 2011 and costs €3,490. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v6.1.3 are:
- Fixes a bug that prevented user detection working under certain circumstances
- Fixes a bug in the heartbeat check logic

Muster is available for Max 8 to 2011 and costs $85. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v2.5.5 are:
- Adds SSS presets to the material wizard
- Material previews are now rendered internally and can use the RS0 engine
- Adds a plugin option to refresh material previews automatically when the material changes
- Adds an option to re-export the geometry for Maxwell Fire at every object change
- Adds a re-export button to the Maxwell Fire window
- Motion data is now always exported when the motion vector channel is enabled
- Adds a production/draft toggle in the global render options
- RFRK meshes now render in Maxwell Fire
- Fixes the Maxwell Fire window not updating if it was cloned
- Fixes emitters in Maxwell Fire if Multilight is on in the global render options
- Emitter MXI files are now loaded when importing a MXM file
- Fixes a crash when opening render options with a daylight system in the scene
- The gizmo for the Maxwell RFRK object is now correct
- Fixes a crash when adjusting the camera settings

The Maxwell 3ds Max plugins come with Maxwell Render, which is available for Max 7 to 2011 and costs €895. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v3.17.4 Beta 2 are:
- Fixes a potential problem in the height map interactive tonemapper tool
- Adds a 'preview mode' option to the height map interactive tonemapper tool
- Adds an option to output raw floating point heights to several formats (OpenEXR, HDR, RAW, TIFF)
- The Optix renderer is now twice as fast
- Recompiled using the latest libraries

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v2.8.45.0 include:
- Adds a new preprocessor feature: 'RunBatch'
- Adds a new preprocessor command: 'MergedSkinnedMeshes'
- Adds 'Track Groups' to the list of 'global' objects recognized by GrannySetValue
- Fixes an angle computation error in the Orientation jump/crease tolerance computation
- Made it easier for Granny Mod tools to strip the branding off the exporter, viewer and preprocessor
- Adds some support for mesh instance detection to the Maya exporter
- Fixes an error that caused granny_control ease-out curves to be ignored
- Fixes Max primitive information only being dumped when UserAttributesOnly was enabled
- Altered the preprocessor to take load mod files or gr2s when BUILDING_GRANNY_FOR_MODS is set
- Fixes a calling convention problem in the Win32 accelerated deformers
- Adds the ability to control the number of times an animation will loop by default
- Adds the ability to mark controls as 'Complete at Local Clock' and 'Ease In/Out at Local Clock'
- Fixes a bug in the preprocessor history storage
- Enumerants in Granny now have an explicit entry to force them to take up 4 bytes
- Adds an 'Export selection only' menu option to the XSI exporter
- GrannyEndVariant now returns the location to be freed to release the allocated memory
- Unified the memory lock across platforms
- Adds range checking for functions that specify a bone range to operate on
- Improved the threaded free just a bit for the default allocator
- Fixes a problem in the viewer that caused it to try to free memory that it hadn't allocated
- Fixes a problem in the blending tutorial that caused double-creation of the granny_control objects
- granny_file_writer now takes a granny_int32x for the SeekType parameter
- Adds a new memory model for the granny_string_table
- Fixes some overzealous assertions in the granny_mesh_builder
- granny_namespace.h now checks for either BUILDING_GRANNY or BUILDING_GRANNY_STATIC
- Adds a generic deformer to match an accelerated path on a handheld platform
- Adds a flag to the tree_walker example to allow omitting pointer values from the output
- Adds security cookie protocol for DLL stack protection
- Re-routed RAD shared allocators for Granny to avoid HAVE_RADMALLOC problems
- Fixes a linker problem in the simulator target for a new platform
- Minor tweaks to the file categorization methods in the viewer
- Fixes a structure packing irregularity in the XSI plugin
- Unified the lock for multithreaded alloc tracking
- Memory lock now progressively yields the CPU to other threads on multi-core systems
- Adds an ExtendedData field to granny_animation for future use
- Adds better file type descriptions in the viewer for open dialog
- Adds clearer log messages for some file reading errors
- Compile fix in the preprocessor
- Fixes a problem with line endings in the OBJImport preprocessor command

Granny Exporter is available for Max 6 to 2011, and is part of the Granny Toolkit which costs $12500.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.7.5.17275 are:
- Fixes nesting state sets causing an error
- Fixes instanced node markings remaining after all nodes are deselected
- Fixes nodes disappearing in multi-pane layout when renamed
- ShowOpenGroupedSceneNodesInLayers is now only applied to layer view
- Fixes an extra wire appearing when wiring textures into composite textures
- Implements Zookeeper native window docking in Max
- Updated to Max.NET 1.2.8

Zookeeper is available for Max 2009 to 2011 and costs $249. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v0.2c are:
- Fixes an issue that caused Max to crash

Plugin Update: New Stripes alpha version

Mankua have released a new alpha version of their upcoming Stripes plugin, which is being developed to add Ptex support to Max.

New features in Stripes are:
- Adds 8 bits per channel painting mode
- You can now resize brush with mouse wheel

If you are interested in becoming a beta-tester, then head over to this page and apply.

The commercial release of Stripes is planned for the first quarter of 2011.

New Plugin: Modelling

SceneOps is designed to make modeling, texturing and populating landscapes as easy as pressing a button. It consists of 4 modules:

The Object Deformer
This module lets you deform meshes by painting height data onto your scenery, allowing you to create vast mountains or smooth deserts.

The Object Mapper
This is the one tool that allows you to quickly paint material ID's onto your surfaces and render out blend materials to smoothly blur between them. No more having to manually map your scenery and generate transition maps. Create a Multi Material and paint the texture into it, press go and realistic terrains are ready to render in seconds.

The Object Placer
SceneOps uses a customizable library to place a lot of objects onto the surface of another object. Because you have full control over rotation limits, scale limits, falloff lengths, density of objects, look at controllers and collision tests, it is a one stop solution for all your detailing needs. No more having to manually place objects to make your scene come to life. And if you feel the need, you can place objects along a spline or even manual paint them onto the scenery with the click of a button.

The Road Modifier
This modifier is applied to an editable spline and creates a UV-mapped road surface along it. It allows you to quickly generate complex road networks or other shapes and align them quickly to your surface just like any other Max modifier.

SceneOps is available for Max 8 to 2011 and costs £199.

Plugin Update: MAXScript Extensions

Changes for v2011.01.09 are:
- Fixes bump map scale issues
- Fixes texture flipping with PLY export

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.2.8.0 are:
- Multiple new types are upcast
- More callbacks and interfaces have been made pluggable
- Compiled under VC9.0 to stay compatible with the Max-installed runtime
- Max 2011 version can now be loaded using the assembly loader

MaxDotNet is available for Max 2009 to 2011 and costs $675 for commercial use. For non-commercial use the plugin is free. A demo version is available here.

Plugin News: 30% discount from iCube R&D

Until the 15th of January, iCube R&D are offering a 30% discount on all of their products (MultiScatter, MadCar, etc.), including bundles. Just use the following coupon code when purchasing: MadCar

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v0.4.7 alpha are:
- Fixes the problem with ATI cards
- Rendering speed is now equal to v0.4.5e and no longer hangs the system

Plugin Update: Particles / Animation

Changes for v1.6.1.43756 are:
- Adds support for FumeFX 2.1
- Fixes a crash on 32-bit Windows 7/Vista platforms when displaying licensing information
- KCMs - Changes the range of integer / float input node spinners to 1 billion
- Particle Data Viewer now has a 4th stat line for vector values
- Particle Explorer can now mass-align/parent/unparent volume sources and PRT volumes
- SchematicFlow adds a pre-declaration of the Krakatoa Camera Modifier
- Adds a check for PFlow saving when partitioning one frame
- Fixes default Deadline loading behavior when no Deadline found
- PRT Loader now updates the R and V checkboxes correctly

Krakatoa is available for Max 9 to 2011 and costs $995 plus support. A demo version is available here.

New Plugin: Modelling

This is a commercial MAXScript for creating realistic mountains with a single click. Several tweakable parameters have been provided to get infinite variety. MaxMounts isn't a simple random noise modifier on a plane, it is a sophisticated algorithm for generating realistic mountain models. The script also has an Environment creation function to create Sky, Sun and Clouds with correct colors depending on the sun's position in the sky.

Features currently include:
- Single click mountain creation
- No two mountains are same, even when created with exactly same parameters
- Twelve tweakable parameters
- Presets for common mountain types
- Three kinds of procedural textures
- Environment creation
- Automatically sets Sky, Cloud and Sun colors depending on the sun's angle
- Full control over materials is available
- Comes with bundled textures
- Free upgrades

MaxMount is available for Max 9 to 2011 and costs $49.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for Build 1745 are:
- Bug-fixes

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.3.9 are:
- Bug-fixes

Switcher is available for Max 6 to 2011 and costs $68. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Texturing

Changes for v1.1 are:
- You can now vary colors for different object elements (Element sub-object)
- You can now vary the texture map amount
- Adds the ability to use the texture map alpha channel
- You can now customize the number of color samples in the MatEd slot
- Increased performance
- Fixes minor bugs

Ky_Color Variator is available for Max 9 to 2011 and costs €29. A demo version is available here.

New Plugin: Miscellaneous

This is a motion tracker built around the open-source OpenNI code and Microsoft's Kinect. It saves a BVH file which can be loaded into Max.

Site News: Happy New Year!

I'd like to wish all visitors to MAX a very happy and successful new year!