Release 2021.2 comes full of advanced improvements. However, as with every release we have tried our best to take a long stride our roadmap and introduce as many improvements as possible. This blog goes through the most remarkable of these:
We have added a new node meant to be connected to the IBL which creates a fully parametric room. This node can be used to quickly create a room-like or lightbox-like (a.k.a., softbox) environment. This can be extremely useful not only to ground your object in plausible neutral surroundings, but also to cancel distracting unwanted reflections from your objects.
The lightbox walls, floor and ceiling, can be fully configured, mapped, or even be turned into emissive panels.
We have also added a new section in our library with ambiences that make use of the parametric lightbox.
We have re-designed curvature and round_edges, which are two of the most computationally hungry nodes in Maverick. The result is a wowing 2x performance boost in round_edges and up to 20x in curvature. This optimization has nothing to do with RTX so it adds on top of what RTX brings.
A long-lasting feature request has been the ability to use a curvature node for weight-mapping in a blend material. This feature kind-of-worked in the past but was half-broken in recent builds. It has now been reviewed, fixed, and benefits from the up-to-20x performance boost in the new curvature algorithm.
We have recorded this video-tutorial that will teach you how to blend materials with a curvature map. In a way this video is also serves as a great tutorial on how to blend materials in general.
Brushed metals library
We have added new brushed metals to our shading library. These materials are ideal for jewelry.
We have added a very handy feature which is especially useful in the Ambience Composer called Lock Selection. With it the selection stays locked so you can move objects or lights around without having to physically click them. This is quite useful when small lights or overlapping lights are involved.