Side Effects Software has shipped Houdini 12, a major new update to its industry-standard 3D software.
Performance is a key focus of Houdini 12, with a completely rewritten geometry engine, improvements in simulation and rendering speed, and a reworked OpenGL 3 viewport.
Side Effects itself is quoting a speed increase of 300 times when instancing to points in the built-in Mantra renderer; and 10 times in FLIP simulations of fluids.
Early testers report that performance gains in the Pyro FX toolset – itself also rewritten – are also significant.
The release also adopts Bullet physics as the default rigid-body solver, as was the case with the recently released LightWave 11 and the Maya 2012 Subscription Advantage Pack; and adds an Alembic exporter to complement the Alembic importer added in Houdini 11.1.
All in all, a significant release. With modo 601 also having shipped this week, and LightWave 11 only two weeks past its official release, a lot of people are going to be engaged in pipeline tests for some time to come.