Wednesday, July 20th, 2016 Posted by Jim Thacker

Isotropix releases Clarisse iFX 3.0

Isotropix has released Clarisse iFX 3.0, a major update to its next-gen hybrid 2D/3D rendering tool, introducing a new physically based rendering engine, new UV baking tools, and a range of workflow improvements.

The developer has also introduced new rental pricing, and simplified its licensing policy – both changes intended to help widen the software’s usage in smaller and mid-sized studios.

A hybrid renderer-cum-compositing tool for look dev and layout work
Combining features of conventional renderers, compositors and animation tools, Clarisse iFX is designed to enable artists to develop heavy production scenes while interacting continually with the final image.

First released in 2012, the software has quickly carved out a niche in high-end visual effects, and is now in use at a number of major visual effects facilities, including ILM and Double Negative.

Complete new physically based rendering workflow and baking toolset
The headline feature of Clarisse iFX 3.0 is the its physically based rendering workflow, which includes a new rendering engine – you can find more details here – and new sets of materials, lights and volume shaders.

The system implements the widely used GGX microfacet surface shading model; and other features include material layering, multiple importance sampling, and per-camera motion blur.

The update also adds a curvature-based edge shader – useful for simulating edge wear on objects – and the option to script variations in material properties across a surface using Open Shading Language.

There is also a complete new set of baking tools supporting the UDIM format used in tools like Mari, and AOV output; and a new UV Texture view. Both can be seen from around 01:00 in the video above.

Improved layout and scattering workflow
Layout and scene assembly artists get a range of UI and workflow improvements, including improved 3D manipulators, object snapping, and asset search.

There are also a range of new scattering options, including density map-based point cloud generation, shown at 03:15 in the video.

Better Alembic and Python support
Alembic support has been improved, with new controls for looping animations imported in Alembic format, and a new Alembic file exporter.

The improved fur interpolate object also means that users can adjust fur length directly within the software, rather than having to import multiple Alembic files representing different lengths.

For TDs, or anyone hoping to get to grips with scripting, any operation performed within the software is now logged as Python code, which can then be quickly copied to the Script Editor.

There are also a range of other new features and performance improvements, which you can read about on the Clarisse iFX 3.0 product page on Isotropix’s website.

Pricing and availability
Clarisse iFX 3.0 is available for Windows, Linux and Mac OS X. It costs $999 for the first licence, then $1,998 per additional node-locked licence, or $3,198 per floating licence. Prices include one year’s maintenance.

Isotropix has also introduced new rental options, with pricing starting at $390 for 90 days. You can find full details in the company’s online store.

Read Isotropix’s official news release for Clarisse iFX 3.0

Read a full list of features in Clarisse iFX 3.0 on Isotropix’s website