Insydium releases Cycles 4D Build 500
Insydium has updated Cycles 4D, its implementation of Blender’s Cycles renderer for Cinema 4D, adding support for hardware-accelerated ray tracing on both CPU and GPU.
Build 500 of Cycles 4D also adds support for custom AOVs, readymade Lights Kits replicating real-world studio lighting set-ups, support for OpenVDB velocity maps, and a lot of workflow and UI improvements.
Blender’s powerful Cycles renderer – directly inside Cinema 4D
First released in 2016, Cycles 4D implements Blender’s Cycles render engine inside Cinema 4D.
It’s capable of a range of rendering effects, including SSS, microdisplacement, motion blur and depth of field, and is compatible with Cinema 4D’s native hair and Mograph systems, and with XPresso visual scripting.
Support for hardware-accelerated ray tracing on CPUs and Nvidia RTX GPUs
Build 500 of the software adds support for hardware-accelerated ray tracing on Nvidia RTX GPUs via the firm’s OptiX framework: also available in the core version of Cycles since Blender 2.81.
For non-Nvidia users, Insydium has also added support for CPU-accelerated ray tracing via Intel’s Embree.
New Lights Manager and readymade studio lighting kits
The release also adds a new Lights Manager, which provides a global overview of the lights in a scene, making it easier to tune lighting set-ups.
Insydium has also three new readymade Light Kits, intended to replicate real-world studio lighting rigs, including soft boxes and ring lights.
New nodes for custom AOVs, texture replication and layer management
Other major new features in Cycles 4D Build 500 include support for custom AOVs.
The new AOV Output node makes it possible to generate a custom render pass for the output of any colour or numeric value from nodes in the shader tree.
The update also adds a new Replicator node, designed for scattering a bitmap image texture across a surface, and a new Layer node to layer colour inputs in an equivalent way to Cinema 4D’s Layer shader.
Users importing animation or simulation caches from other software in OpenVDB format can now render them with motion blur, thanks to support for OpenVDB velocity maps in the cyCamera tag.
Workflow improvements to the Node Editor, real-time preview and viewport
The software’s Node Editor gets a number of workflow improvements, including the option to add nodes to a node tree by right-clicking on an output port.
Users can also drag and drop assets – including lights, hair, selection tags and Insydium’s X-Particles emitter – into the node editor and have the software create corresponding nodes automatically.
The real-time render preview has been updated, adding a new Stop on Render option, and making it possible to draw a render region in the RTP window rather than having to resize it with drag handles.
In addition, all image textures used in Cycles 4D can now be viewed directly in the Cinema 4D viewport.
Pricing and availability
Cycles 4D is available now for Cinema 4D R14 and above, running on Windows 7+ or Mac OSX 10.10+.
Full licences of Cycles 4D now cost £210 (around $230), including one year’s support and updates. The software now comes with unlimited render nodes, previously a separate purchase.
Cycles 4D officially requires a Nvidia graphics card for GPU rendering: rendering with an AMD card via OpenCL will theoretically work on a Windows machine, but is not supported.