Autodesk Arnold, TurboSquid being acquired, RTX 30-Series Mobile GPUs

CG Director Author Jerry Jamesby Jerry James   /  Updated 
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January’s over, and we’re moving into February of 2021 already! The past week saw a few minor software updates, a couple of major ones, and more confusion in the laptop GPU market.


This section covers news sourced from various trusted media and business outlets.

Autodesk Ships Arnold 6.2

Arnold, Autodesk’s advanced Monte Carlo ray tracing render engine, got an update to version 6.2 last week. The update focuses on bringing an even better post-processing experience to creators while adding GPU improvements like shadow linking, support for NanoVDB, and quicker start-up. Read more.

VR Modeling Tool, Gravity Sketch, Now Free for Individual Users

Gravity Sketch has made its virtual reality design software free for individual users. The tool is free for use in commercial work, and the free version includes the option to export assets in FBX and IGES export. Read more.

Maverick Indie and Studio 2021.1 Update

RandomControl shipped 2020.1 updates for Maverick Studio and Indie (comparison here), its physically based GPU renderers for industrial designers and artists. Both editions get updated built-in denoiser, which now supports resolutions of up to 8K. The update also brings various UI updates and adds new features like an Ambience Composer and the ability to save ambiences from the Ambience Composer. You can find the full changelog here.

Google Open Sources Tilt Brush

Google released the code for the Virtual Reality 3D painting tool under the Apache 2.0 license. The project is now no longer being actively developed. Although Tilt Brush went on to win a series of industry awards, Google has pulled back on actively developing it. It isn’t a surprise as the move is in line with their virtual reality stance in general. That said, with the code now freely available, firms or open source communities can continue developing the software under new names. Read more.

Shutterstock Set to Acquire TurboSquid for $75 Million Cash

Founded in 2000, TurboSquid is one of the oldest and most popular 3D content marketplaces. Shutterstock’s TurboSquid acquisition deal, set to close next month, will make it the world’s largest online 3D marketplace. Shutterstock hasn’t revealed any details about its plans with TurboSquid’s existing services. Read more.

Isotropix Releases Roundup and Details of the Year to Come for Clarisse

The round-up promises the release of Clarisse 5, in addition to updates to Angie (a next-gen CPU + GPU renderer) and many surprises, in 2021. Through 2020, the Isotropix team released 20 service packs, and the team hopes to continue this work in the coming year. The round-up also covered the first tutorial launched in 2021 – Baking Materials into Efficient Textures. Watch the round-up video for more details.

WTools3D Releases LWCAD 2020 for LightWave and Cinema 4D

WTools3D released a significant update to popular modeling plugin for LightWave and Cinema 4D, LWCAD 2020. The update comes with more tools compatible with the application’s new Mesh TR representation of geometry, a new mesh topology inspector for LightWave Users (LightWave version shipped last year). Cinema 4D users will enjoy better integration with the host software and is more of a performance and compatibility update. You can look into more details about Cinema 4D and LightWave releases.

Twinmotion 2020.2.3 is Now Available

Epic released a hotfix for Twinmotion based on feedback from the community. The update fixes several bugs that plagued backward compatibility, vegetation, and imports and exports. That said, there is still a relatively long list of known issues that Epic is aware of and is working to fix. These unfixed issues include bugs like an inability to resize the grab region in the context dock. Read more.

Unity 2021.1 Beta Released for Feedback

A few of the highlights of Unity 2021.1 are Visual Scripting and improvements to graphics, the editor, Profiler, and a list of other things. The latest Beta includes over 1700 fixes and more than 240 features and changes. Unity does remind users that the Beta is not considered production-ready and should not be used for production-stage products. Users can try out the Beta right away. Read more and explore the Beta.

Picking from 28 Variants for GeForce RTX 30-series Mobile Graphics Cards for Laptops

As we reported last week, Nvidia no longer requires manufacturers to list Max-P or Max-Q specifications for laptops with Nvidia GPUs in them. In the past, it allowed consumers to have some idea about what they were buying. However, with 28 versions of Nvidia RTX 3080, 3070, and 3060 mobile GPUs, consumers are in for surprises because a high-power RTX 3070 could very well outperform a low-power RTX 3080. ComputerBase (German) listed all the SKUs in a news post.

Educational Content and Helpful Resources for CG Professionals

This new section features tools, training materials, tutorials, and so on for various CG applications.   

[Free] 3-day Maxon Creative Workshop – Designing and Compositing Compelling Titles using Cinema 4D, Redshift, and Xparticles:                                   

[Paid] Gnomon Workshop Creature Hair & Fur in Houdini – 8-Hour Masterclass with Kristin Farrensteiner (Known for building and simulating hair and fur for Marvel and Disney movies):


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