Sunday, June 24th, 2012 Posted by Jim Thacker

Rendering Systems releases ShaderMap 2

Rendering Systems has released ShaderMap 2, an update to its normal map-generation tool. The software automatically generates displacement, normal, specular and ambient occlusion maps from a source texture.

New real-time preview options
New features in version 2 include a new UI and the option to paint normal maps in real time. The results are automatically previewed in 3D, with the option to adjust the lighting manually.

The Material Visualizer display can also be used when editing textures in other ways.

Under the hood, Rendering Systems has added support for multi-core systems and separate 32 and 64-bit binaries, plus a free SDK enabling users to develop custom materials via HLSL shaders.

Import/export options have also been expanded, with supported image formats now including PSD and DDS.

Value for money
The feature set still isn’t quite as extensive as similar tools such as CrazyBump or Allegorithmic’s Bitmap2Material – but then, ShaderMap is only a fraction of their price.

ShaderMap 2 is now available for Windows XP and above, price $39.95, including all version 2 updates and three seat installations per licence. Additional licences cost $19.95 each.

Visit the ShaderMap website

Download a trial version of ShaderMap 2