Friday, May 4th, 2018 Posted by Jim Thacker

Online documentation for V-Ray Next for Max goes live

Chaos Group has released the online documentation for V-Ray Next, the next major update to the renderer.

The docs are still a work in progress and will be updated before V-Ray Next officially ships, but they should enable anyone interested in its new features to explore them in more detail.

The company has also posted a blog update discussing the new GPU volumetric rendering capabilities in the current beta release of the software, V-Ray Next Beta 3.

Explore all of the upcoming features in V-Ray Next in the new online documentation
As well as documenting the new features in V-Ray Next, the update adds a couple of new features to the docs themselves, including interactive examples and floating menus to help navigate long pages.

According to Chaos Group’s forum post: “[We] know a lot of people could have used the docs earlier in the beta, but … while in the works [the internal changes] would have made the experience unpleasant.”

The firm also says that it will continue to update the documentation until V-Ray Next ships, so it’s probably wise not to take this as a signal that the final release is absolutely imminent.

New in Beta 3: volumetric rendering in V-Ray GPU
In separate news, Chaos Group has a new blog post explaining the features of the current public release of the software, V-Ray Next Beta 3, in more detail.

Released at the end of March, Beta 3 extends V-Ray’s GPU rendering capabilities, with the old V-Ray RT interactive renderer now officially renamed V-Ray GPU.

(It’s still capable of rendering on CPUs as well, but there are no longer separate CPU and GPU versions.)

The change marks a shift in emphasis: rather than an interactive preview, V-Ray GPU is now being pitched as a production renderer in its own right – a GPU-based alternative to the standard V-Ray Adv engine.

Accordingly, the V-Ray interface is now modal: on switching the render engine to V-Ray GPU, only features compatible with it are shown in the UI.

The update also adds a number of new features previously cited by users as stumbling blocks to adopting GPU rendering in production, including VRayMtl’s Glossy Fresnel feature, environment fog and volumetrics.

The latter are covered in Chaos Group’s new blog post, in which Dabarti studio director Tomasz Wyszolmirski shows off R&D tests demonstrating GPU support for VRayEnvironmentFog and V-Ray’s Volume Grid.

As well as the open-source volumetric formats OpenVDB and Field3D, V-Ray GPU can now render volume data in the native format of Chaos Group’s fluid simulation software, Phoenix FD.

You can see the workflow in the video at the top of the story, in which Wyszolmirski changes parameters inside Phoenix FD on the fly, with the results updating inside V-Ray in near-real time.

Pricing and availability
V-Ray Next Beta 3 is available for 3ds Max 2013+, and is a free beta for users of V-Ray 3.x for 3ds Max. You can apply to join the beta here.

Chaos Group hasn’t announced a commercial release date for the software yet.

Browse the new online documentation for V-Ray Next

Visit the V-Ray for 3ds Max product website