[Originally posted on: 18 December 2012. Scroll down for updates.]
E-on software has released Carbon Scatter 2, a new version of its vegetation instancing plugin.
Carbon Scatter is derived from the EcoSystem instancing technology in e-on’s Vue products, and is available as a plugin for 3ds Max, Maya and Cinema 4D.
New algorithms, new editing controls, new plant editor
As ever, e-on’s press release is very thorough, so we won’t repeat too much of it here.
But while the most striking feature of Carbon Scatter 2 is the ability to populate 360° environments (above), it’s probably the improvement in raw performance that will make most difference to your work, along with support for display technologies like Max’s Nitrous viewport and the option to control object placement with curves.
There is also an optional new Botanica module for customising stock plant models, and creating new species.
Carbon Scatter 2 costs $195, or is a free upgrade for registered users. The Carbon Botanica module costs $145 if bought separately, or $295 as a bundle with Carbon Scatter 2. You can see system requirements below.
Updated 1 February 2012: A 30-day trial version of Carbon Scatter 2 is now available to download. Rendering is limited to 10,000 instances, and saving and network rendering are disabled.
e-on software, the leader in Digital Nature solutions, today announced the immediate availability of Carbon Scatter 2, the company’s advanced instancing plugin for 3ds Max, Maya and Cinema 4D.
Derived from e-on software’s acclaimed EcoSystem technology, Carbon Scatter 2 is the easiest and most straightforward solution for creating complex and detailed populations using the native instancing technologies of the host application.
On top of new super-fast population algorithms (create over 1 million instances per second!), Carbon Scatter 2 adds the ability to populate objects all around at 360°, allows stacking of instances, and makes fantastic use of the native displaying technologies of your application (point-cloud rendering, Nitrous interactive rendering, etc). There are many other novelties in this release, including the ability to use curves to define population areas, which, added to Carbon Scatter’s interactive painting tools and powerful fractal rules, gives you unprecedented control over your instancing.
By adding the optional Carbon Botanica module, users can even edit and create their own plant species directly, for even greater variability and control (see below).
Key features of Carbon Scatter 2
Carbon Scatter 2 integrates e-on’s patented EcoSystem™ algorithms directly inside the end user’s favorite 3D application, allowing the population of native scenes with millions of instances and rendering them with the user’s renderer of choice.
Key benefits of Carbon Scatter 2 include
- Over 100 3D plant species (with variations!) and 130+ billboard trees included
- Populate millions of instances per second!
- Interactive population – change a setting and Carbon Scatter repopulates in a blink
- Populate at 360° around objects
- Use the powerful EcoPainter brush to paint-in instances directly with your mouse
- Edit or create your own plant species with the optional Carbon Botanica module
- Render billions of polygons easily thanks to native instancing
- Works with all your shaders
- Compatible with native previewing options (Nitrous, point-cloud, etc)
- Advanced scattering rules with procedural graph control
- Multi-layer scattering with internal affinity/repulsion
- Scattering inside/along curves
- Stacked instances (e.g. to create piles of rubble)
- Use animated populations with full phasing control
- Enormous library of additional plant species available from cornucopia3d.com*
*Requires Carbon Botanica
Vegetation Customization with Carbon Botanica
Based on e-on software’s renowned procedural plant technology, the optional Carbon Botanica Plant Editor lets the user easily customize any of the plants included with Carbon Scatter and allows creation of his own, unique plant species.
The user can adjust the settings for the entire plant, or work on individual subsets of the plant (trunk, branches leaves…). Textures for any subset can be edited or replaced, so custom pictures and scans can be used to create new realistic leaves and trunks.
Newly created plants can be saved as specimens for later use. Since each plant is based on the SolidGrowth™ technology, each plant populations will automatically feature variations for that extra-realistic look.
Pricing and Availability
Carbon Scatter 2 is available in English for Windows XP, Vista and 7 (32 and 64 bit), and on Mac OSX 10.5+ (Mac Intel only, 32 and 64 bit). One license of Carbon Scatter can be used with all compatible applications and renderers installed on the end user’s system.
Carbon Scatter 2 retails for $295 bundled with the Carbon Botanica plugin, and $195 without. The Carbon Botanica plugin for Carbon Scatter 2 retails for $145 if purchased separately.
Compatible applications and renderers
- Carbon Scatter 2 for 3ds Max works with MentalRay and V-Ray renderers (3ds Max 2009 to 2013).
- Carbon Scatter 2 for Maya works with MentalRay, and V-Ray renderers (Maya 2009 to 2013).
- Carbon Scatter 2 for Cinema4D works with the native renderer, and should work with all other renderers that are compatible with Cinema4D instances. Such renderers include VrayC4D or m4d (mental ray for Cinema4D) for instance (Cinema 4D R11.5 to R14*)
*R14 on windows only. Support for C4D R14 on MacOS should be available early 2013.
Until January 31, 2013, the upgrade from the previous version of Carbon Scatter is free for all registered users. Users who upgrade to Carbon Scatter 2 may also get the Carbon Botanica plugin for a reduced $99 only.
E-on software expects to release the free Carbon Scatter 2 Trial version early in 2013.
Visit the Carbon Scatter website
(Includes six demo videos of the new features)