MAX News Archive

Archived Plugin News  –  September 2013

Plugin Update: Modelling / Texturing

Changes for v4.1.2 are:
- Adds Density/Scale falloff and Boundary Checking for Surface areas
- Adds Surface->Randomize Stacked function
- Adds right-menu selector for Custom Objects, Surfaces and Areas
- Adds Display->Update All to rebuild all Forest objects
- Adds RGB Level for diffuse maps to Material Optimizer
- Adds support for VRay 3.0 beta (3.05.02 or greater)
- Adds support for VRay 1.5 in Max 2013
- Adds Max 2014 to the installer
- Increased limits of Transform->Translation
- Forest Tools assigns Object ID from the Forest object to instances
- Adds preset materials for Octane and Thea Render
- Some library models have been scaled to a more natural size
- Adds support for Laubwerk Plants catalog add-on
- Right click on Creation Panel->Library button clears current selection
- Presets can now use library materials
- XRef import is now disabled by default for Preset models
- XRef materials are always merged into the scene, regardless of Library Browser settings
- The templates layer now keeps a single copy for each plant model
- Fixes an error loading preset when objects with the same name are in the scene
- Adds support for labels and thumbnails at library level
- Fixes a major viewport slowdown when using animated VRay proxies
- Point-cloud colors are now gamma corrected
- Point-cloud mode is suggested for Laubwerk objects
- Fixes a bug with nested Forests when inner object is on Custom Edit mode
- Geometry->ID Color are now properly updated after cloning
- 'Add Multiple' selectors now accept geometric objects created from splines
- Fixes an updating issue when two or more areas share the same spline / object
- Fixes a crash bug using Tree Editor when object is empty
- Fixes item rotation when using Forest in XRef scenes with 'Bind' option
- All MAXScript functions with a size parameter now accept zero for the default size
- The uninstaller no longer removes installed catalog add-ons
- Fixes a crash when assigning Custom Objects directly from the templates layer
- Fixes a crash when using the Octane material converter

Forest Pack Pro is available for Max 9 to 2014 and costs €190. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Renderers

Caustic have decided to take their Visualizer plugin for Max back to alpha for the time being. They intend to narrow their focus and accelerate their efforts on other plugins that are farther along in development (eg. Caustic Visualizer for Maya). They will return to developing the Max Visualizer next year, and in the meantime they have refreshed the last build to extend the expiration date.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.0.2.0 are:
- Nodes producing non-array outputs can now be connected directly to array inputs
- Fixes an 'If' node problem with array inputs
- Dynamic array nodes now revert to normal nodes when the dynamic array connection is removed
- Disabled the check for 'Ephere.Lab.Templates.' prefix for editable plugins
- You can now connect a non-array output to an input which previously had an array value
- Adds logging when licensing is unsuccessful
- Internal changes and fixes
- Doc updates

Lab for 3ds Max is available for Max 2009 to 2014 and costs $250.

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v3.2 are:
- Para can now use control points in all types of FFD modifier
- Para can now explode EditablePoly and EditableSpline objects to Parametric Arrays
- Magnet controller now accepts multiple magnetic points
- You can now sort List controller values by comparing the results from another controller
- Link controller can now access the parameters of different Parametric Arrays
- Different update methods have been integrated in Collection and List controllers
- Improved functionality in Collection controller
- Improved performance and graphics (new interface is programmed in WPF)
- Adds searching among the properties
- New labels can help to put comments and notes next to other Para nodes
- Adds automatic zoom and pan function when selecting nodes not visible in current view
- Para node interface now creates multiple connections when wiring from multiple properties
- You can now add or remove modifiers from array members and refresh the property list
- Animations are automatically removed before closing Max
- Update methods have been improved
- You can now clear the selected properties using the right-click menu
- Create Parametric Arrays from selected objects when the Para dialog is open
- Fixes the Link Objects function problem in the link controller
- Fixes the Set distance function in the Linear controller
- Interpolate controller in Matrix mode has been fixed
- Parametric Shape bugs have been fixed
- Various bugs fixed

Parametric Array is available for Max 2010 to 2014 and costs $80. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Modelling / Animation

Changes for v2.3.2.0 are:
- You can now assign material IDs to proxy geometry in Mesh From Strands modifier
- Mesh From Strands proxy mesh option can now output multiple mapping channels
- Updated documentation to reflect additions

Ornatrix is available for Max 2009 to 2014 and costs $499. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Utilities

Changes for v1.3 are:
- Adds support for Max 9 SP2 and Max 2008
- Adds new macro: Round'Em no UI directly adjusts selection into the form of circle
- Easy Peel adds support for Edit Poly modifier
- All scripts now work with docked and undocked Command Panel

miauu's Script Pack Volume 2 is available for Max 9 to 2014 and costs €17.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v2.49 are:
- Adds Maya and Max 2014 plugins
- Adds Maya 2012 and 2013 32-bit plugins
- Rebuilt all plugins to exclude dependency from Microsoft's CRT

New Plugin: Utilities

Catalyst is coded to increase the rendering speed of V-Ray. It basically allows you to set the quality (and speed) of your render using percentages: 100% is the full render, 20% would be a fast preview. It also has a few useful extras such as automatically removing RayTrace maps from inside materials and multimaterials, a button to hide objects behind the camera and a button to turn on/off objects hair and fur.

Catalyst is available for Max 2011 to 2014 and costs $24 for a two license pack.

New Plugin: Utilities

Lab is a node-based plugin authoring toolkit which allows creation of in-place plugins inside Max. It is integrated into Max's architecture and can be used to visually create in-place or reusable controllers, modifiers, objects, particle forces, textures, and many other entities.

The visual nature of Lab allows non-programmers to quickly pick up the process of developing tools and enpowers them with the ability to extend Max as they are working directly inside it. You can also distribute your Lab plugins to users who don't have a copy of Lab.

To give you a better idea of what can be done with Lab, EPHERE have a YouTube channel with a load of tutorials and an introductory video.

Lab is available for Max 2009 to 2014 and normally costs $250. Until September 15th they are running an introductory 25% discount which is available using the discount code 'LAB_INTRO' on the EPHERE website.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v1.1.138 are:
- Fixes a crash on semicolon-wrapped false token in import job string
- Material ID from faceset name is now parsed on import (if possible)
- Adds support for Max 2014

Alembic for 3DS Max is available for Max 2010 to 2014 and costs $399. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Modelling / Texturing

Changes for v4.1.1 beta are:
- Adds RGB Level for diffuse maps to Material Optimizer
- XRef materials are now always merged into the scene regardless of Library Browser settings
- Materials are now assigned correctly from the Library Browser

Forest Pack Pro is available for Max 9 to 2014 and costs €190. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Animation

Changes for v1.5 include:
- Layer Manager can now autoscan Cat rigs in the scene
- Layer Manager now has a resizable window
- Adds playback tools to the Pose Manager
- JoyCreator Pro has been totally rewritten
- Adds 8 directions joystick
- Adds infinite layers for any map point of the joystick with different weights
- Adds easing curves to give different acceleration to each layer in the list
- Adds a non-destructive system to edit the created joystick/s

XRay CAT Survival Toolkit is available for Max 2009 to 2014 and costs $49.99.

New Plugin: Modelling

miauu's Script Pack Volume 2 is a set of commercial MAXScripts that will help you to make tedious tasks faster and easier when using Max.

miauu's Script Pack Volume 2 includes:
- Attach and Link - automates the process of linking objects to the surface of other objects
- Align Verts to Vert - align selection to the X/Y/Z/XY/YZ/XYZ position of the last selected vertex
- Easy Peel - helps you with UV-mapping your geometry easier and faster
- Extrude Along Path - extrude selected object's polygons along selected edges or spline path
- Open Edges Extrude - extrude border edges using the numeric values for the extrude distance
- Quad Cap Holes - quad cap even sided holes
- Round'Em - adjust each set of selected closed edge loops or polygons into the form of circle
- Smart Spline Extrude - extrude in arbitrary directions / angles
- Vert Stitcher - align one selection of vertices to other selection of vertices in a few easy steps

miauu's Script Pack Volume 2 is available for Max 2009 to 2014 and costs €17.

Update: I fixed the faulty links to miauu's site.

Plugin Update: Renderers

Changes for v1.20 include:
- Adds multi-threaded scene compiling
- Significantly improved rendering performance in all scenes
- Adds architectural glass
- Adds volumetric fog and lightshafts
- Adds customizeable sky/sunset color and sun size
- Adds background image support in the viewport
- Adds a dirt texture
- Adds panoramic cameras (spherical and cylindrical)
- Adds customizeable bokeh DOF
- Adds lens distortion
- Adds a raytraced wireframe mode
- Improved nodegraph navigation
- Adds camera presets (front, back, top, bottom, left, right)
- Render priority (provides smoother UI)

OctaneRender is available for Max 2010 to 2014 and costs €359. A demo version is available here.

Plugin News: V-Ray 3.0 beta

Chaos Group have opened up beta testing of their upcoming V-Ray 3.0 to licensed users. The new version has a host of new features, and will also have a new pricing structure (more details can be found here).

Plugin Update: Modelling

Changes for v2.0 are:
- Adds bend controls
- Adds twist controls
- Adds skew controls
- Adds a Presets Save/Load section
- The active section is now highlighted while editing
- Adds a preview Multimat material
- Adds 'Weld end verts' functionality
- Adds noise controls

Tubular is available for Max 9 to 2014 and costs $2.

Plugin News: FurryBall 4 Beta 2 for Max available

Art And Animation Studio have released the latest beta version of their GPU renderer FurryBall which finally adds support for 3ds Max (2013 and 2014, 64-bit only). You will need to register for their forum before you can take part in the open beta test.

New features in Beta 2 include:
- Adds multi-GPU support
- Adds 3ds Max support
- The watermark is now less visible
- Adds displacement (raytraced)
- Adds support for bump maps in reflection and IL
- Adds tile rendering (you can now use unlimited resolution)

Plugin Update: Connection

Changes for v6.5-1 are:
- Adds support for Adobe's Creative Cloud 'CC' version numbering scheme
- Adds worker_boot_delay to qb.conf.template
- Modified the new worker_boot_delay to default to 0 seconds on ALL platforms
- Large re-write, not backward-compatible with previous argument spec
- Jobs are now only deleted when all jobs in the jobs' pgrp completed more than X days ago
- Adds removeOrphanedLogs functionality for jobs no longer present in Qube
- The MySQLdb module is no longer a requirement, but runs faster with it
- Adds deprecation warnings to python qb module accessor method
- Fixes erroneous 'timecumulative' of instances (subjobs)
- Removed 'Configure Qube' menu item from workertray.exe
- The 'Administrator' user now gets permissions to manipulate others jobs
- Adds worker_boot_delay to qb.conf to set the number of seconds to artificially delay booting
- Fixes appFinder jobs error out at setup
- Fixes random Worker crashes on Windows DU mode
- Adds code to 'generate movie' jobs to support frame ranges that don't start at 1
- Adds a leading '.' to the movie_ext choice strings, which is required
- Patched a crash bug in supervisor
- Fixes a global resource collector error on MySQL servers running in STRICT mode

Qube! is available for Max 7 to 2014 and costs $3500 for one supervisor, five workers, MySQL and subscription for one year.. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Import / Export

Changes for v2.0.3 are:
- Fixes some issues with dummies and other nodes
- Free users can now use right-handed option

AXE Pro is available for Max 7 to 2014. At the moment I have no information on pricing. A demo version is available here.

Plugin Update: Texturing

Changes for v0.0.0.4 Beta are:
- Fixes a crash when using an empty tile set
- Fixes bugs in image based color control and image based tile control functions
- Fixes an activation bug

Mighty Tiles Pro is currently in open beta testing, and is available for Max 2012 to 2014 (64-bit only).

Plugin Update: Post FX

Changes for SP2 are:
- Improved 3ds Max and Modo scripts
- Auto-installation of 3ds Max plugins/scripts
- Bugfixes: modo match specular, Windows XP support, language support
- Other minor bugfixes

MOTIVA Colimo is available for Max 2008 to 2014 and costs €139.