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Rendering Systems releases ShaderMap 4

Wednesday, August 30th, 2017 | Posted by Jim Thacker

 
Rendering Systems has released ShaderMap 4, the latest version of its texture-creation software, adding support for Color ID maps, and improving workflow when previewing maps and generating normal maps.

The software is also now free for non-commercial use.

Tools for automatically generating or hand painting common texture maps
As with more expensive tools like Substance B2M or Knald, ShaderMap converts 2D source images into a range of common texture maps, including normal, displacement, specular and ambient occlusion.

It also bakes maps from 3D models like displacement, AO, curvature, and world or tangent space normals.

It includes a 3D preview for the maps being generated, including the option to use custom geometry; and comes with a set of brushes for manually editing or detail normal maps.

Users can customise the way that maps are exported for editing in external applications like Photoshop; and the software comes with a C++ SDK and XML-based command-line options for pipeline integration.

New in version 4: support for Color ID maps, improved normal workflow and map preview
New features in version 4 include the option to generate Color ID maps from 3D models, for use in 3D painting applications; along with a Color Tool to paint triangles or subsets within ShaderMap itself.

Normal map workflow has been updated, with new low, mid and high detail controls when generating normal maps from displacement; and support for tilt vector transforms inside the normal map editor.

The 3D preview also gets a new data panel, which displays more information about the map selected: in the case of normal maps, a normal radar; in the case of standard maps, a histogram.

Under the hood, all map rendering is now done in 16-bit floating point space – although the software also imports and exports 32-bit floating-point files – to “maintain precision while reducing memory [use]”.

The update also adds support for models in 3DS and Collada format.

Pricing and availability
ShaderMap 4 Pro is available now 32- and 64-bit Windows Vista and above. The software costs $49 for the first seat, then $29 per additional seat. The software is also now free for non-commercial use.

 
Read a full list of new features in ShaderMap 4

Download ShaderMap 4 free for non-commercial use

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