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Dec 10, 2014
Chaos Group Releases V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max SP1
Improved Render Speeds, New Microfacet GTR / GGX BRDF, and Major Advancements in GPU Rendering Now Available

Improved Render Speeds, New Microfacet GTR / GGX BRDF, and Major Advancements in GPU Rendering Now Available

Sofia, Bulgaria – December 11, 2014 – Chaos Group today announced Service Pack 1 for V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max. With further improvements to render speeds, a new Microfacet GTR / GGX BRDF, and major advancements in V-Ray RT GPU, Service Pack 1 is available for immediate download.

New V-Ray RT GPU Features
V-Ray RT GPU now supports rendering hair and subsurface scattering, making it perfect for advanced character work. Improved refresh speeds enable greater interactivity for look development and faster iterations. Light Cache support now makes it possible to render architectural interiors using the GPU.  

New Microfacet GTR / GGX and Shader Improvements
V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max SP1 adds support for Microfacet GTR / GGX BRDF, ideal for hard surfaces such as metal. In addition, many shaders have been refined for faster rendering and added functionality. There are now Clip opacity and Stochastic opacity material options for faster rendering of opacity-mapped trees and vegetation, improved translucency of two-sided materials, and optimized volume rendering with Light Cache support.  

Other new features in Service Pack 1:

Geometry 

  • Updated to Embree 2.3; Embree can now accelerate VRayProxy objects, instances and Ornatrix/HairFarm hair
  • New VRayInstancer geometric plugin for instancing objects using ParticleFlow systems
  • Improved cutaway and section rendering with VRayClipper
  • Automatic instancing of identical proxy objects
  • Added support for subdivision objects in Alembic files through OpenSubdiv
  • Added support for point cloud rendering in 3ds Max 2015
  • New vrmesh/Alembic viewer for proxy objects

Lighting

  • New disc-shaped area light
  • Faster sampling of rectangular area lights
  • Ability to control diffuse and specular lighting contributions separately

Render Elements and Compositing

  • Support for OpenEXR 2.2 with new DWA compression options
  • Render out light contributions into separate components (raw, diffuse, specular, etc.)
  • New controls for object visibility in VRayVelocity render elements

V-Ray Frame Buffer

  • New dockable history and color correction tools in V-Ray Frame Buffer 
  • New Reinhard highlight burn color correction
  • Save multi-channel OpenEXR and .vrimg files directly from VFB
  • Ability to load background image into VFB
  • New option for loading files into VFB for post processing
  • Improved anaglyph stereoscopic preview

Availability

V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max Service Pack 1 is a free update for all V-Ray 3.0 customers. It can be downloaded here.

Oct 22, 2014
Chaos Group Releases V-Ray 3.0 for Maya
Substantial Upgrade to Rendering Pipeline with Improved Ray Tracing Performance and New Progressive Image Sampler

Substantial Upgrade to Rendering Pipeline with Improved Ray Tracing Performance and New Progressive Image Sampler 

Sofia, Bulgaria – October 22, 2014 – Chaos Group today announced the release of V-Ray 3.0 for Maya, delivering a powerful new set of features and optimizations focused on speeding up lighting, look development, and rendering workflows. 

"This is, by far, the most substantial upgrade for our rendering pipeline since we switched to V-Ray five years ago,” said Kirk Shintani, Head of 3D at a52. “The ‘beta’ was stable and amazingly fast, and the staff reaction to 3.0 is summed up with one word, ‘Whoa.’ It's that kind of fast. It allows us to stay focused on making cool imagery. That's why we do what we do, isn't it?" 

Throughout the V-Ray 3.0 for Maya development cycle, Chaos Group worked with artists and studios to benchmark and analyze a number of production scenes. From their research, they found opportunities for significant speed increases as their team refined each section of code. These advances, coupled with beta feedback, bring about many of the key features in V-Ray 3.0 for Maya including:

Faster Ray Tracing and Rendering Performance

V-Ray 3.0 for Maya introduces a faster ray tracing core that significantly speeds up a number of calculations for global illumination, lighting, shading and more. For additional speed gains, V-Ray 3.0 also includes an option to enable the Intel® Embree ray caster for static and motion-blurred geometry, proxy objects and instances.

Faster Feedback

V-Ray 3.0 for Maya adds a new Progressive Image Sampler with a full range of production features and is compatible with all of V-Ray’s GI algorithms such as irradiance map, light cache, and brute force path tracing. The Progressive Image Sampler generates quick feedback even with complex features such as volumetric effects, depth of field, and motion blur. An enhanced V-Ray RT engine renders directly in the Maya Viewport and supports animated sequences as well as final frame rendering. 

Advanced Characters and Creatures

V-Ray 3.0 optimizes shading and rendering of millions of strands of semi-transparent hair with greater speed and efficiency. For added detail and realism, V-Ray 3.0 now supports subsurface scattering with object-based and ray traced illumination, and the new VRaySkinMtl skin shader.

For the complete list of new features, please visit V-Ray.com.

Pricing and Availability

V-Ray 3.0 for Maya is available now. V-Ray 2.0 upgrades start at $420/€300 and the full workstation license price will be $1,040/€750. Upgrades to V-Ray 3.0 for Maya plus 10 universal render nodes start at $970/€700. Customers should contact their local reseller or Chaos Group representative for more pricing information.  

Aug 11, 2014
Chaos Group’s V-Ray comes to The Foundry’s MODO, NUKE and KATANA
Development collaboration brings popular VFX, broadcast and design renderer to industry-standard apps

Vancouver, British Columbia – August 11, 2014 – In response to artist and designer demands, Chaos Group and The Foundry have announced that V-Ray will be available for a number of The Foundry's creative software solutions.

The two companies have been working together on the development of  V-Ray for three of The Foundry products: V-Ray for MODO, V-Ray for KATANA, and V-Ray for NUKE. These products will be unveiled for the first time at SIGGRAPH and can be seen in action at Chaos Group’s booth (#501).

Starting today, V-Ray for MODO and NUKE are available as a public beta, and the commercial version of V-Ray for KATANA is ready for purchase.

“Chaos Group and The Foundry’s products have been cornerstones of Atomic Fiction's workflow since day one,” said Kevin Baillie, co-founder and VFX supervisor at Atomic Fiction. “Both companies share an obvious passion for making amazing, production-focused tools, and are constantly looking towards the future. We’re excited that their futures are converging to unify our rendering pipeline across our favorite applications!”

Built on V-Ray’s latest 3.0 core rendering technology, the integration with The Foundry's tools streamlines the workflow for studios with pipelines built around V-Ray, NUKE, MODO, and KATANA.

The Products:

  • V-Ray | MODO – Provides flexibility and production-proven rendering capabilities for MODO artists creating 3D content. Now in public beta.
  • V-Ray | NUKE - Unifies the pipeline between NUKE artists and 3D artists for unprecedented workflow improvements at all stages of production, while providing access to V-Ray's advanced ray tracing capabilities. Now inpublic beta.
  • V-Ray | KATANA – First used on “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” by Industrial Light & Magic, the industry-leading lighting and look development package is now coupled with industry-standard rendering technology. Available upon request.

Bill Collis, CEO of The Foundry comments: “We have been working together with Chaos Group for a number of years and it’s great that we are now able to offer this integration between our products. V-Ray has a great user-base in our own key markets, VFX and design and we are excited to help our clients to access these technologies in a more streamlined and efficient workflow.”

Users looking to hear more about the V-Ray for The Foundry’s tools will get their chance at SIGGRAPH 2014, as both companies will be discussing this exciting new development as part of a series of joint events.

“Chaos Group and The Foundry products are staples of the VFX and broadcast industries, which makes every measure of efficiency or improvement a step forward for artists in the trenches,” said Peter Mitev, CEO of Chaos Group. “With this alliance, we will continue to give artists whatever they need to be successful at every stage of their pipeline.”

SIGGRAPH Schedule:

  • Chaos Group on-stage interview – Chaos Group’s Chief Commercial Officer Lon Grohs will join Brad Peebler (President of the Americas at The Foundry) in the Foundry Booth (#601, right next to the Chaos Booth) for a web-streamed discussion of the announcement on Wednesday, August 13 at 10 a.m.
  • MODO/MARI user group – Chaos Group will outline the new functionality of V-Ray for MODO at the Vancouver session of this popular user group. It is open to the public and will be held August 13 at the Georgia Ballroom A at The Hyatt Regency Hotel from 7:00 – 8:30 p.m.  

For more information on V-Ray for NUKE and V-Ray for MODO products, go to: v-ray.com/NUKE and v-ray.com/MODO. For information on V-Ray for KATANA, contact: VFX@chaosgroup.com.

--

About Chaos Group

Chaos Group creates physically-based rendering and simulation software for artists and designers. Founded in 1997, Chaos Group has devoted the last 16 years to helping artists advance the speed and quality of one of their most important tools. Today, Chaos Group’s photorealistic rendering software, V-Ray®, has become the rendering engine of choice for many high-profile companies and innovators in the design and visual effects industries.

To find out more visit: www.chaosgroup.com

About The Foundry

The Foundry develops award-winning creative software used globally by leading artists, designers and creative professionals. The portfolio lets users create inspiring and technical high-end visuals across a wide range of industries including product and concept design, marketing & advertising, media & entertainment and game development.

In the design world clients include major manufacturers such as Adidas, Honda, Toyota and Brooks. In VFX, clients include film studios and post-production houses such as Pixar, ILM, Double Negative, The Moving Picture Company, Walt Disney Animation, Weta Digital, Framestore and Sony Pictures Imageworks.

To find out more visit: www.thefoundry.co.uk/about-us/

Aug 5, 2014
Meet Chaos Group Labs: LA’s New CG Think Tank
R&D Center for Creative Projects; Current Initiatives Include Advances in Digital Filmmaking, Virtual Reality, and the Wikihuman Project

Los Angeles, Calif. – August 5, 2014 – Today, Chaos Group introduces Chaos Group Laboratories, a new collaborative think tank to explore advances in rendering technology. Located in LA’s hub of design, visual effects and technology, Chaos Group Labs will serve as a place where artists, industry leaders and academic researchers are invited to contribute to development discussions and help solve key computer graphics challenges.

Significant progress has already been made on projects that focus on massively parallel rendering, cloud and GPU rendering, virtual performance capture, and rendering for next generation cinematic experiences.

"We are passionate about artists and rendering challenges, and we want to help move the entire industry forward,” said Lon Grohs, Chief Commercial Officer at Chaos Group. “Chaos Group Labs allows us to bridge the gaps between hardware, software and artists’ needs at a much deeper level.”

Current initiatives include:

Digital Filmmaking - Chaos Group Labs is working closely with a number of independent filmmakers including the CONSTRUCT team to innovate new rendering workflows and improve the cinematic experience. These experiments include outputting imagery to be displayed at high dynamic range, high frame rates, and ultra-high resolution, all of which result in a significant increase in the rendering required. In addition, this research has led to advances in virtual performance capture, bringing ray traced rendering to the entire filmmaking process. Working with partners at NVIDIA, OptiTrack, and BOXX Technologies, Chaos Group’s newest prototype of V-Ray for MotionBuilder will be showcased at Real-Time Live during SIGGRAPH 2014. 

The Wikihuman Project - To further realistic rendering and animation of digital humans, Chaos Group Labs has formed a panel of academic and industry experts from around the globe, including several members of the Institute for Creative Technologies at USC, including Paul Debevec. “This has always been one of the biggest challenges for CGI,” said Chaos Group Creative Director Christopher Nichols. “And the findings of this open project will be a milestone for the VFX industry.”

Virtual Reality - Chaos Group has also partnered with tech startup Nurulize to develop fully immersive, virtual reality experiences designed for the Oculus Rift.

The disruptive technologies worked on by Chaos Group Labs, combined with partnerships with artists, designers and leaders in multiple industries and disciplines, is a mission that will enable creatives to express themselves in a far more impactful way than ever before. 

To pitch ideas or join the conversation, contact: labs@chaosgroup.com.

Jul 29, 2014
Chaos Group to Host Two “V-Ray Days” at SIGGRAPH 2014
ILM, Method Studios, and Digital Domain Among Featured Presenters, Real Time Live Event Showing Rendering Advancements for Independent Filmmaking

Sofia, Bulgaria – July 29, 2014 – At SIGGRAPH 2014, Chaos Group is bringing back one of last year’s most popular presentation events, “V-Ray Days.” Filled with behind-the-scenes information on rendering techniques used on films like “Captain America: The Winter Solider,” “Maleficent,” and “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” the two-day event will not only cover films, but broadcast television, commercials, game cinematics and more. 

Both “V-Ray Days” will be held at the SIGGRAPH Convention Centre (room 223) starting at 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday (Aug. 12) and 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday (Aug. 13). Presenters include top supervisors from Industrial Light & Magic, Digital Domain, Blur Studios, Method Studios, Scanline VFX, and IKEA. This event will also be open to all SIGGRAPH attendees (see  full program).

In addition to “V-Ray Days,” one of 2014’s big stories is coming to Real Time Live. Entitled “Maturing the Virtual Production Workflow: Interactive Path Tracing for Filmmakers,” the talk will target how Kevin Margo (of Blur Studios) and Chaos Group were able to create a virtual production workflow with a new prototype of V-Ray for MotionBuilder that uses ray traced rendering to display high-quality images during a live motion capture session. Chaos Group’s Vlado Koylazov and Christopher Nichols will join Margo as presenters on Tuesday, August 12 at 5:30 – 7:15 p.m. in the Convention Centre’s West Building, Ballroom C/D.

On Sunday, August 10, NVIDIA will join Margo and Nichols to discuss “How V-Ray RT and GPU rendering are Defining a New Filmmaking Paradigm” in room 223-224 in the Convention Centre at 10:15 – 11:15 a.m. Chaos Group will join NVIDIA again for their Limelight event to showcase the most recent advancements in V-Ray RT GPU rendering on Tuesday, August 12, from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. at the Fairmont Waterfront Hotel

In the Chaos Group Booth (#501), Autodesk will discuss V-Ray’s optimization for 3ds Max 2015; while Ephere will explain how V-Ray can be maximized for their hair creation tool Ornatrix for 3ds Max. Further demos will be conducted by Chaos Group staff and will cover everything from new developments in V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max and Maya to Phoenix FD. There may even be something brand new to share. 

Also at the booth, visitors will see a two story V-Ray Art Gallery filled with some of this year’s most creative user artwork. The V-Ray community’s talents are enjoyed the world over making this signature installation a must see.

To see the full schedule, please visit Chaos Group’s SIGGRAPH website.

To schedule a meeting with Chaos Group or to view a demonstration during SIGGRAPH 2014, please contact: Gina Adden, gina.adden@usa.chaosgroup.com.

Jun 20, 2014
Chaos Group To Present Future of Architectural Visualization at 2014 AIA National Convention
Industry Standard for Architectural Rendering Highlighted by Visionaries from Gensler, BIG, and studioJDK Architects; New V-Ray Virtual Reality Integration

Los Angeles, California – June 19, 2014 – For years, V-Ray has set the standard for architectural rendering. Chaos Group continues this tradition by announcing a new strategic partnership and discussing recent advances in rendering technology. At the 2014 American Institute of Architects Convention (AIA) in Chicago, Chaos Groupwill demonstrate where architectural design, visualization, and virtual reality converge.

Chaos Group technology partner and virtual reality pioneer, Nurulize, will offer an exclusive preview of AtomView, which connects V-Ray rendering with the Oculus Rift. For the first time, AtomView will allow designers to accurately visualize and explore their designs in a fully immersive, photorealistic environment. Visit booth #3054 to experience AtomView for yourself. 

In addition, representatives from leading design firms BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group), Gensler, and studioJDK will be on hand to demonstrate their V-Ray rendering workflows. Alessandro Ronfini from BIG will discuss his visualization process for major international projects, including Denmark’s Lego House and West 57th Street in NYC. Artists and designers from Gensler will share their techniques using V-Ray for Rhino and V-Ray for 3ds Max on Pittsburgh’s The Tower and PNC Plazaand Chicago’s Genevieve and Wayne Gratz Center. Jeremy Kay of studioJDK will offer an innovative approach to non-photorealistic rendering, pairing V-Ray and SketchUp.

“We understand that rendering is a vital part of the design process, and we work closely with architects and visualization artists to build the exact tools they need to communicate their designs from concept to final presentation,” said Lon Grohs, Chief Commercial Officer at Chaos Group. “Having several trained architects on our team helps us design features that make a difference. That’s one reason why we’ve partnered with Nurulize to take architectural visualization to a new level.”

For a complete presentation schedule, visit Chaos Group’s Events  page.

To schedule a meeting with Chaos Group or to view a demonstration during AIA 2014, please contact: Corey Rubadue, corey.rubadue@usa.chaosgroup.com

Apr 10, 2014
Chaos Group Spotlights Students and Independent Films at FMX 2014
Industry Pros and Indie Filmmakers Offer Courses on Lighting, Creature Design, and VFX for Films; Presentations from Students on Award-Winning Shorts

Sofia, Bulgaria – April 10, 2014 – At FMX 2014, Chaos Group will be highlighting how V-Ray supports VFX students and indie filmmakers across the globe. Through a series of presentations by both student teams and professional artists, attendees will see how new improvements to V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max and Maya are used on film and animation projects, as well as how students might get a leg up in an increasingly competitive field. 

Students that stop by Chaos Group’s booth will be able to meet with representatives, see V-Ray for Blender in action (every day at 10 a.m.) and try out both versions of V-Ray 3.0 in the FMX marketplace. 

Miguel Ortega  and Tran Ma, the creators of “Green Ruby Pumpkin” are giving multiple talks on how their team approaches creature design on “The Ningyo.” Currently in production, “The Ningyo” focuses on the world of cryptozoology (the search for mythological creatures). This Kickstarter-funded project is also a collaboration with students from Gnomon School of Visual Effects.

Method Studios’ CG Supervisor, Blake Sweeney will demonstrate the techniques behind the invisible effects his team used on the “mirror room” sequence in “Divergent.” Sweeney will also explain what benefits studios draw from V-Ray’s advanced raytracing capabilities, adding a real world perspective on what makes it an effective production solution for students to learn. 

Sweeney, who has worked on “Robocop” and “Iron Man 3,” will return again to provide students with insight into how they can make a great portfolio and successfully approach blockbuster film work during a special lecture session. Students will also be on hand to offer their own case studies/tips as teams from Supinfocom and Filmakademie share the secrets behind their award-winning projects, "The Rise and Fall of Globosome," "Bet She'an" and "Rugbybugs."

Chaos Group CEO Peter Mitev is set to describe how GPU-accelerated V-Ray RT 3.0 rendering is establishing a new paradigm for filmmaking. The upcoming CG-animated short film "CONSTRUCT," rendered entirely on NVIDIA GPUs will be highlighted, as well as a tech preview of V-Ray for MotionBuilder, which was used on the project. 

Complete Presentation Schedule

  • “‘The Ningyo’: Decrypting Cryptozoology,” by Miguel Ortega, Director at Spy Films and Tran Ma, Production Designer at Spy Films
    April 22, 2014, 12:00 p.m. in Room Mannheim
       
  • “Blockbuster VFX: Behind ‘Divergent’’s ‘Mirror Room’,” Blake Sweeney, CG Supervisor at Method Studios
    April 22, 2014, 12:00 p.m. in Room Mannheim  
      
  • “V-Ray 3.0 Crash Course: Rendering Characters and Environments,” by Konstantin Gaytandziev, V-Ray Master Trainer at Chaos Group
    April 22, 2014, 2:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m.
    April 23, 2014, 11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m., 5:00 p.m. 
    April 25, 2014, 11:00 a.m., 2:00 p.m. in the Chaos Group Booth   
     
  • “Creating ‘CONSTRUCT’: How V-Ray RT and GPU Rendering is Defining a New Filmmaking Paradigm,”by Peter Mitev, CEO at Chaos Group and Konstantin Gaytandziev, V-Ray Master Trainer at Chaos Group
    April 22, 2014, 4:00 p.m. – 5:00 p.m. in Room Karlsruhe   
     
  • “What’s New In V-Ray 3.0,” by Konstantin Gaytandziev, V-Ray Master Trainer at Chaos Group
    April 23, 2014, 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. in Room Karlsruhe    
     
  • “A Career in Visual Effects,” by Blake Sweeney, CG Supervisor at Method Studios
    April 23, 2014, 11:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m.
    April 24, 2014, 1:00 p.m. in the Chaos Group Booth   
     
  • “A Career in Visual Effects,” by Miguel Ortega, Director at Spy Films
    April 23, 2014, 2:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m.
    April 24, 2014, 12:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m. in the Chaos Group Booth   
     
  • “Award Winning Student Projects,” by Supinfocom and Filmakademie students 
    April 25, 2014, 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. in Room Mannheim

 

For more information on what Chaos Group will be doing at FMX, please visit: fmx2014.chaosgroup.com and watch for updates on Twitter (@ChaosGroup and via #VRay). If you are interested in a meeting with Chaos Group at FMX, please contact: pr@chaosgroup.com.

Mar 20, 2014
Chaos Group Announces V-Ray 3.0 for Maya Beta
Faster Ray Tracing, Progressive Rendering, and Open Source Support Bring Speed and Flexibility to VFX Artists; Advanced Skin Shader and Improved SSS Round Out Powerful New Feature Set

Sofia, Bulgaria – March 20, 2014 – The core functionality that has made V-Ray popular for film, commercial and episodic television work is being upgraded with today’s beta release of Chaos Group’s V-Ray 3.0 for Maya. Included in the initial round of enhancements will be a new Progressive Rendering Engine, support for several open source technologies, and up to 5x faster ray tracing and rendering performance.<

After years of using V-Ray in production on projects like “Oblivion” and “Iron Man 3,” Digital Domain has used an early integration of deep image support to put some of 3.0’s features to the test. “On ‘Ender’s Game’, we hooked up massive Houdini swarm simulations up to V-Ray Proxies and rendered the most geometry we’ve ever attempted at Digital Domain,” said Linghao Li, Technical Director at Digital Domain. “In one shot alone there were 333,443 ships on screen. 27 billion polygons rendered out for Deep Compositing and V-Ray handled it no problem.”

V-Ray 3.0 introduces a powerful new path-tracing engine (Progressive Image Sampler) that provides artists with instant feedback during the look development process. In addition, V-Ray 3.0's new optimized core raises speed levels dramatically in all physically-based lighting, shading and rendering.

For character and creature development, V-Ray 3.0 offers up to 15x faster hair rendering, improved Ray-Traced Subsurface Scattering (SSS), and a new VRaySkinMtl with built-in SSS and layered reflections. Support for MARI’s UDIM and Autodesk Mudbox’s UVTILE formats makes it easier for users to incorporate textures from their favorite programs.  

“We rely on V-Ray every day to help us craft big projects like ‘Game of Thrones,’ ‘Warm Bodies’ and ‘Noah,’” said Dmitry Vinnik, CG/Technical Supervisor at LOOK Effects. “Faster ray tracing and hair rendering is exactly what we need to turn around big shots before a deadline.”

Already known for easy integration with production pipelines, V-Ray 3.0 has become even more versatile by adding support for common open source formats like OpenSubdiv, Alembic 1.5, Deep Images and OpenEXR 2.0, OpenColorIO, and in the near future, programmable shaders with Open Shading Language [OSL]. 

“Of the many renderers I’ve used, I personally feel that none are as artist-friendly as V-Ray,” said Blake Sweeney, DFX Supervisor at Method Studios. “The built-in shaders and render elements give us solutions for almost every situation imaginable. For the rare corner case that requires something extra, Chaos Group collaborates and brainstorms with us to find a solution, and it's generally included in updates almost immediately. I've never seen anything like it.”

Chaos Group invites all V-Ray users participating in the beta to send in their thoughts on what would make for the best final product. For the complete list of new features and upgrades, please visit V-Ray.com, the new home for the V-Ray community. 

Pricing and Availability

V-Ray 3.0 for Maya public beta is available now and open to all V-Ray for Maya users. It can be accessed here.

Feb 4, 2014
Chaos Group Ships V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max
Versatile Lighting, Shading, and Rendering Toolkit for 3ds Max Delivers Powerful New Feature Set; Production-Ready for Teams of Any Size

Sofia, Bulgaria – February 3, 2014 – Today’s launch of Chaos Group’V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max continues the company’s goals of making speed and simplicity accessible to all artists. With significant optimizations to the ray tracing core, Brute Force GI, Progressive Path Tracing, Reflections, Refractions and more are running up to 5x faster; while the new Progressive Production Renderer brings a new era of fast set-ups and quick iterations.

“When your customers come from a variety of industries like architecture, product design, games, and VFX, the feature requests can be fairly diverse,” said Vlado Koylazov, Lead Developer and Chaos Group co-founder. “But speed and simplicity benefit all artists, so they are at the core of 3.0’s development.” 

Simplicity starts with V-Ray 3.0’s new interface. Designed with new and experienced users in mind, three UI modes (Basic, Advanced, and Expert) can be selected to match an artist’s preference. The new V-Ray toolbar includes Quick Settings with dropdowns for production-ready presets for common uses like Archviz Exterior, Archviz Interior, and VFX. Settings for Quality and Shading Rate can be fine-tuned with easy-to-use sliders, making the entire process highly intuitive.

According to beta testers, the speed at which V-Ray 3.0 can produce high-res stills and animations is generating a buzz in the design community. “V-Ray 3.0’s new Progressive Renderer was the talk of our recent 3ds Max London User Group,” said David Bullock, Partner at creative agency Hayes Davidson. “Iterating in real-time should really help speed up our workflow, and we’re definitely looking forward to putting it into production.”

VFX artists will find that V-Ray 3.0 offers improved Subsurface Scattering (SSS) including options for object-based and ray traced illumination, faster hair rendering speeds (up to 15x), view-dependent tessellation that automatically smoothes hair curves, and a dedicated Skin Shader with layered reflections. Now with UDIM and UVTILE support, it’s even easier to move MARI and Autodesk® Mudbox® assets into V-Ray.

“Our game cinematics are usually packed with epic action scenes, huge environments, multiple characters with hair and SSS, fire, explosions, debris, all with 3D motion blur and render passes. That’s a lot to work with, but V-Ray makes it easy to get the job done,” said Kevin Margo, VFX Supervisor at Blur Studios. “3.0 is something to be excited about.”

As an industry standard for large environments and complex scenes, V-Ray’s recent use on Industrial Light & Magic’s (ILM) “Star Trek Into Darkness,” “Pacific Rim” and “The Lone Ranger” has proven why it’s become such a dependable part of the pipeline for the digital environments and matte painting team. "When we started ‘The Lone Ranger,’ we changed some of the toolsets under the hood; we went strictly over to 3ds Max, using V-Ray as our renderer. That was the final piece of the puzzle. We were getting not only great render results, but great render throughput; it could handle everything we were throwing at it,” said Dan Wheaton, Digital Matte Supervisor at ILM.

V-Ray 3.0 offers a number of additional workflow shortcuts, technical advances and support for open sources technologies. These include:  

  • Render Mask– Users can define render regions using an object selection or image mask
  • Reflection/ Refraction Trace Sets – Provides more direct control in choosing whether reflections and refractions are visible in objects
  • Max Ray Intensity – Will easily fix artifacts from over-bright sources
  • Probabilistic Lights – Increases the speed of scenes with a high number of lights
  • V-Ray RT GPU – Improved with support for Render Elements
  • V-Ray Frame Buffer – Improved with added color correction controls
  • Open Source Technologies   
    - Alembic integration with support for hair and particles
    - Deep Data output support including OpenEXR 2.0
    - Ptex object-space vector displacement support
    - Open Shading Language (OSL) support for programmable shaders
    - OpenColorIO support for advanced color management

For the complete list of new features, please visit V-Ray.com, the new home for the V-Ray community. 

Pricing and Availability 

V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max is available now. V-Ray 2.0 upgrades start at $420/€300 and the full Workstation license price will be $1,040/€750. As upgrade bundle prices vary, customers should contact their local resellerChaos Group representative, or use the new upgrade calculator to see what option fits their needs best.

Dec 12, 2013
Chaos Group Releases V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino
Popular Renderer for Rhino Gets Major Overhaul Across the Board; Speed, Workflow, Lighting, and Material Improvements; Free for V-Ray 1.5 for Rhino Customers

Sofia, Bulgaria – 9 December 2013 – Today marks the launch of V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino, the newest update toChaos Group’s high-performance rendering engine for designers. With up to 30x faster V-Ray RT performance, V-Ray Express tools and live connection to HDR Light Studio with Light Paint, this release aims to promote creativity and artist-friendly workflows for Rhino users.

Behind every new V-Ray release, you’ll find in-depth feedback from artists and designers. V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino is no different. By partnering with the people that use the software the most, Chaos Group’s development team has been able to ensure that the intuitive and simplified rendering process they envisioned lines up with the creative control their users want.

“V-Ray for Rhino has been our renderer of choice at Minimal since the day the company was formed,” says Dustin Brown, Lead Designer at MNML. “The material system is extremely powerful, lighting is quick and customizable, and network rendering works transparently within our design process, even for still images. It helps us spend more time designing and less time visualizing – and that is exactly what we want.”

Big new and improved features in V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino include:

• V-Ray RT – Interactive responses and a streamlined scene composition with GPU ray tracing up to 30 times faster from directly inside the Rhino viewport. 

• V-Ray Material – A brand new compact and optimized material for V-Ray that includes parameters to adjust diffuse, reflection, and refraction. 

• V-Ray Express – Users can easily access more than 200 materials and interchangeable lighting setups to create realistic studio scenes and illuminate models faster than ever.

• HDR Light Studio Support – Live connection HDR Light Studio with Light Paint feature accessed directly within Rhino, providing the most intuitive and creative way to light a design.

For the full list of product features, click here.

“We are very excited that, for the very first time, HDR Light Studio can be accessed from within an actual 3D design environment through the new V-Ray for Rhino live connection,” said Mark Segasby, co-founder and CEO of Lightmap Ltd. “Everything you need to bring your vision to life is all in one Rhino scene file now – from your 3D forms to material/finishes to the lighting. It just makes sense.”

“Our focus on full integration makes sure our customers never lose precious work hours to inefficiency,” says Corey Rubadue, Product Manager at Chaos Group. “Our commitment to the design community is unwavering, and we believe the faster speeds, easy controls and access to content will only accelerate their projects and products.”

Chaos Group has also prepared a long list of dedicated resources that will help new V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino users. Those materials include:help documentationintroductory videosa dedicated forum, and a dedicated product page.

Pricing and Availability:

V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino is now available for Rhino versions 4 and 5. To provide optimum security, reliability, and portability Chaos Group requires a hardware key to license its software. V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino customers will have the option to purchase a new hardware key or install the license on an existing one. Registered users have access to a free demo through the V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino product page.

The upgrade to 2.0 is free for current license holders of V-Ray 1.5 for Rhino. Single license pricing for V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino is 690 EUR / 960 USD / 590 GBP. V-Ray 2.0 for Rhino can be purchased through Chaos Group’slocal resellers.

Sep 22, 2013
Chaos Group Ships V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp
25 New Features Target Speed, Lighting and Visualization Quality; 64-Bit Rendering, V-Ray RT for CPU and GPU, Plus Support for SketchUp 2013 Now Available

Sofia, Bulgaria – 16 September 2013 – With today’s launch of Chaos Group’s V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp, the access designers have to faster rendering, better lighting tools, and more detail in complex scenes has reached new heights. It’s the biggest expansion to V-Ray for SketchUp’s rendering capabilities yet, and it’s all thanks to the help of a vast and very dedicated group of beta testers.

This artist-friendly rendering solution for SketchUp features dramatic improvements to visualization workflow (V-Ray RT®), image-based lighting quality (V-Ray Dome Light), and a designer’s ability to quickly manage complex scenes with highly detailed models (V-Ray Proxy). 

“This is by far the most exciting and influential release of V-Ray for SketchUp we have ever had. High quality visualization is now easier than ever, making V-Ray even more of an everyday tool for designers", said Corey Rubadue, Product Manager at Chaos Group. 

“V-Ray is the best rendering engine for SketchUp on the market today,” said Matthew Valero, Founder at Valero Studio. “High polygon proxies, RT rendering, and incredible accuracy at rapid speeds - simply amazing. It’s the one SketchUp plug-in I could never live without.”

Since they were first revealed in beta form, V-Ray 1.6 for SketchUp’s banner features were met with much excitement in the V-Ray community. After receiving excellent feedback from beta testers, Chaos Group was able to turn what was initially supposed to be an incremental release into a major one. 

The introduction of GPU support for V-Ray RT provides faster rendering and real time interactions with speed improvements up to 30 times faster. With 64-bit rendering, 3D artists can tap their 64-bit render farm for more processing power with added flexibility to render larger scene sizes, images, and animations in SketchUp. The ability to produce animation for SketchUp projects has also been streamlined, ensuring a cleaner and easier creation process.

For the full list of features, click here.

"We use V-Ray for SketchUp as a base for every illustration that leaves this studio," said Jeremy Kay, Owner at StudioJDK. “Its remarkably fast rendering speeds, customization abilities and beautiful output never let you down or doubt why it’s our industry’s leading rendering software solution.”

Chaos Group has also prepared a long list of dedicated resources that will help new V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp users. Those materials include: help documentation, a dedicated forum, and a dedicated product page.

Pricing and Availability

V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp is now available for SketchUp 8, SketchUp Make 2013 and SketchUp Pro 2013 on both Windows and OS X platforms. To provide optimum security, reliability, and portability Chaos Group requires a hardware key to license its software. V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp customers will have the option to purchase a new hardware key or install the license on an existing one. Registered users have access to a free demo through the V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp product page.

Pricing for V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp will remain unchanged at $800. The upgrade price from V-Ray 1.49 for SketchUp or lower is $320. Users who purchased V-Ray for SketchUp between 15 April 2013 and 15 September 2013 will be eligible for a free upgrade.

V-Ray 2.0 for SketchUp can be purchased through Chaos Group’s local resellers

Sep 4, 2013
Chaos Group Releases V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max Beta
New UI design, Progressive Production Rendering, Cross-Application Shader Format, and Rendering Speed Improvements Highlight the Artist-Inspired Upgrade

New UI design, Progressive Production Rendering, Cross-Application Shader Format, and Rendering Speed Improvements Highlight the Artist-Inspired Upgrade 

Sofia, Bulgaria – September 4, 2013 – Chaos Group has announced the beta program for V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max - the most complete lighting, shading and rendering toolkit on the market. Everything an artist or full scale production team needs to tackle tight timelines comes standard with V-Ray 3.0. Beta testers will have direct access to the Chaos Group team, which will help make this artist-driven package even more appealing to VFX, arch-viz, and industrial design users in the coming months.  

Speed will be the first improvement most users will notice as ray tracing calculations are running up to 5 times faster. Also debuting is a new simplified user interface design that provides quick access to common controls and settings. With Production Presets and Quick Settings right up front, users can fine tune quality and speed from the start of their design process, helping them be more efficient. Another point of efficiency will be the new Progressive Production Rendering; an intuitive one-click action that allows artists to set up a scene in seconds and iterate quickly, even when using V-Ray’s most complex features.

Over the beta period, Chaos Group will roll-out a new XML, cross-application material format called VRmats that can be universally transferred across multiple V-Ray host applications.

“Speed and simplicity remain at the core of V-Ray 3.0’s roadmap because that’s what our users want,” said Vladimir Koylazov, Chaos Group Co-founder and Lead Developer of V-Ray. “Our community is very active and very collaborative, which is a great situation to be in if you want artist feedback. V-Ray 3.0 is their proof that we hear them loud and clear."

V-Ray 3.0 has taken their need for speed and extended it to tasks where time has always been crucial for artists. That means general ray tracing is on average 2-3x faster, and hair rendering speeds are clocking in at up to 15x the previous rate. V-Ray 3.0 will also introduce support for a variety of open source technologies including Alembic, OpenEXR 2.0 and Deep Image Data, OpenColorIO, and Open Shading Language [OSL].

“Productions of all sizes are about to get a lot more out of V-Ray,” added Lon Grohs, VP of Business Development at Chaos Group. “V-Ray 3.0 is our pipeline-ready answer to any production problem that takes away from the creative process.”

For the complete list of new features and upgrades, please visit v-ray.com, a new home for the V-Ray community.

Pricing and Availability

V-Ray 3.0 Beta for 3ds Max is now available for users who already own a V-Ray for 3ds Max License. This release also marks the introduction of several new licensing choices and policies.

Universal Render Nodes

New universal V-Ray Render Nodes support network rendering and distributed rendering across multiple platforms (including 3ds Max and Maya, with Rhino, Softimage and SketchUp to be added in the future).

Unified Licensing

In V-Ray 3.0 the User license and Render Nodes are licensed separately. This allows for unified licensing across applications and reduces the cost for individual User licenses. The new price of V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max User license + 1 V-Ray 3.0 Render Node is $1050/ €750. Single V-Ray Render Nodes 3.0 cost $350 /€250.

Upgrade Bundles

Customers upgrading from V-Ray 1.5 and V-Ray 2.0 will have several cost effective options. V-Ray 1.5 upgrades start at $980/€700; while V-Ray 2.0 upgrades start at $420/€300. Users who purchased V-Ray 2.0 for 3ds Max between 4 August 2013 and the V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max official release date will be eligible for a free upgrade.

Flexible Term Licensing

New flexible options for monthly and annual licensing are now available.

For full pricing information on every licensing type, please visit the Chaos Group website.

About Chaos Group

Chaos Group is a leading provider of innovative rendering solutions for the media, entertainment, and design industries. For over a decade our flagship rendering software, V-Ray®, has set the standard for speed, quality, reliability and ease of use, and it has become the rendering engine of choice for renowned international studios. We work closely with our customers from around the world to ensure we’re creating the best tools for their workflow. Inspired by their imaginative creations, we passionately pursue advances in rendering technology and continue to improve the software needed to communicate their vision.

We proudly support the 3D community with our advanced software solutions: V-Ray® for Autodesk® 3ds Max®, V-Ray® for Autodesk® Maya®, V-Ray® for Autodesk® Softimage®, V-Ray® for Rhino®, V-Ray® for SketchUp®, Phoenix FD and Pdplayer.

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