Tools company Autodesk has announced that it has begun shipping Autodesk 3ds Max 8 software, the latest version of its 3D modeling, animation and rendering solution.
As part of the release, Autodesk is introducing the industry's first scalable, unlimited mental ray network rendering option specifically for 3ds Max. This proprietary addition gives valuable rendering flexibility to customers using 3ds Max software. 3D artists can now distribute 3ds Max rendering tasks (via Backburner) across a network using the integrated mental ray renderer without incurring additional costs-allowing them to scale their mental ray rendering resources to the limits of their network or render farm capabilities.
Other major features in the realm of character development include: advanced rigging tools, motion mixing and motion retargeting (non-linear animation). Modeling & Texturing advancements include new UV pelt mapping, DirectX and .fx support. Comprehensive Development Framework enhancements include improved software developer kit (SDK) tools and documentation, XML support that efficiently exchanges scene and animation data and an interactive MAXScript debugger along with support for the Autodesk DWF Viewer, for simple collaborative review and approval of 3D data. Complex Data and Asset Management advancements bring continued connectivity to third-party asset management systems and integration of the Autodesk Vault full-featured data management and asset-tracking solution.
"This release of 3ds Max software brings significant productivity boosts to our user base," said Marc Petit, vice president of product development and operations at Autodesk Media and Entertainment division. "To that end, we're very proud to also provide our customers with the extended flexibility of the mental ray network rendering framework, adding great value to 3ds Max by allowing our customers to freely scale their render farms and realize an even greater cost of ownership advantage."