Originally posted on 8 April 2013. Scroll down for updates.
Knald Technologies has released
an open beta of Knald, an interesting new map-generation tool it describes as “the world’s first GPU-powered solution for generating ‘bake quality’ textures from any 2D source image”.
The software generates the usual range of maps, including normal, AO, concavity, convexity and displacement, from photographic images – and being based around OpenCL, it works with any graphics card.
According to the developer: “Knald can generate [such] maps in around five seconds on a mid-level Nvidia [GeForce GTX] 560 Ti. When loading a height map directly, all other maps are generated instantly.”
Engineered for high-precision workflow
Knald looks pretty robust: the software includes a 3D preview showing your maps applied to a model with “real-time, scalable tesselation”, and supports 8, 16 or 32-bit workflow.
According to the website: “All calculations within Knald are performed in double/single precision floating point (float64/float32).”
“We have painstakingly ensured that with our robust I/O pipeline, with full 8, 16 and 32-bit (integer and float) support, you will never suffer from precision drop due to lazy coding and can focus on creating great art!”
Knald runs on Windows 7 and Windows 8, and you’ll need at least a 2GHz dual-core and 2GB of RAM to run it: ideally, a 3GHz quad-core GPU and 8GB of RAM. It runs on any OpenCL 1.0/OpenGL 3.2-compatible GPU.
Updated 10 December: Knald 1.0 is shipping. A licence costs $100 if you’re a freelancer or hobbyist; for studios, pricing starts at $200 per seat. You can read the official announcement or download the demo version.