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Sitni Sati releases FumeFX 5.0 for 3ds Max

Monday, March 19th, 2018 | Posted by Jim Thacker

Sitni Sati has released FumeFX 5.0 for 3ds Max, the latest version of the popular gaseous fluid simulator, adding a new GPU-accelerated viewport preview, and improving the detail and stability of simulations.

The software is also now available as a single workstation licence, without any bundled simulation licences, reducing its cost to anyone who only needs to run it on one computer.

Conservative advection generates more detailed, stable gaseous fluid flows
New features in FumeFX 5.0 include conservative advection, a new advection type that Sitni Sati says leads to more stable, detailed fluid flows, particularly when dealing with complex geometry.

According to the firm’s blog post, the system can “easily create fluid flows that minimize numerical losses even after 900 frames of animation”.

In addition, exported velocities or 3D textures can now be used to generate additional advected details within a fluid flow at render time.

New GPU-accelerated viewport preview with support for voumetric shadows and occlusion
Workflow changes include the integration of a GPU-accelerated simulation preview within the Max viewport. The new display supports volumetric shadows, “proper” geometry occlusion and real-time shader feedback.

There is also a new FumeFX toolbar, which provides access to key tools and simulation controls.

Faster, more stable sims, particularly when retiming
Under the hood, the simulation core has been redesigned, making it possible to use more complex geometry instead of proxies without causing instability in a sim.

Performance has also been improved: FumeFX estimates that sims should calculate “up to 20% faster”, and should scale better with CPU cores, resulting in consistent output regardless of the number of cores used.

Retiming should result in simulations remaining smooth “regardless of simulation sub-steps and retiming scale factor”. It is also now possible to retime a sim during the calculation’s wavelet turbulence pass.

Improvements to simulation caching and rendering
Sitni Sati has also introduced a new lossy compression format with support for per-channel settings and the option to mix lossless and lossy channels inside the same cache file.

The changes should help users to balance the quality of a cache against its file size more controllably.

When generating caches in OpenVDB format rather than as native FumeFX FXD files, caches are now written in a way “that makes them easily readable inside the Arnold Volume Grid, Redshift grid and even Houdini”.

Caches can also now be reloaded at a user-defined resolution to make them easier to manipulate.

Other changes include direct rendering support for Corona. You can find a full list via the links below.

Pricing and availability
FumeFX 5.0 for 3ds Max is available now for 64-bit 3ds Max 2014+ running on Windows 8+. At the time of posting, its sister product, FumeFX for Maya, had not been updated to version 5.0.

Pricing remains unchanged, with a workstation licence plus two simulation licences costing $845, and extra simulation licences costing $195 each. You can also now buy workstation licences separately, for $695.

Read a full list of new features in FumeFX 5.0 on Sitni Sati’s blog

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