Thursday, February 28th, 2013 Posted by Jim Thacker

Sneak peek: 3ds Max’s updated Nitrous viewport

Autodesk has posted its first teaser video showing the new functionality it’s been working on in 3ds Max, in the run-up to its official 3ds Max 2014 launch event on 27 March.

As ever with these things, the video comes with Autodesk’s usual disclaimer, which translates roughly as: “This isn’t guaranteed to be in any specific release of Max… but given the timing, we’re hinting that it’s in 2014.”

Better responsiveness on multi-million-poly scenes
The footage shows the improved performance of the Nitrous viewport, with scenes that were noticeably laggy to navigate in 3ds Max 2013 becoming smoothly interactive in 2014.

If you watch at the highest resolution, you can see that the poly count is up around 2.5 million to 3.5 million for the first two scenes, although some hardware specs for the demo machine would have been nice.

Later scenes show improved animation playback and node selection in complex scenes.

Users stirred up, not shaken
So far, user response on YouTube could probably be described as ‘lukewarm’. One fairly typical post, from duber studio’s Lukáš Dubeda, reads: “This stage should be called Max 10.8, not 2014”.

However, if Autodesk follows the pattern it established with 3ds Max 2013, it will be saving bigger things for later: last year’s teaser campaign began with small fixes and went on to the MassFX physics system.