What is new in Renderman 24 | In depth

New features in Renderman 24

I’m excited about the Renderman 24 release.

There are so many new features and new buttons to press and It’s hard to pick one major feature as they all are massive improvements in their own right.

The new shading system LAMA makes it easier to blend advanced shading effects

I’m excited about the future of XPU that will now bring even more rendering power in my home studio as I can utilize my graphics card as well as the CPU when I do my look-development.
XPU it’s not for production rendering still but it’s a big step forward towards final frame rendering.

One cloud on the sky however is the Non-commercial version, it does not feature XPU. I was painfully aware of this in some of the Youtube comments. They were asking how to turn it on. A couple of people wanted to rage un-install just because they could not compare it to redshift.

I’m also excited about the OCIO enhancements in this version as colour management is something we all need to have in place in the VFX industry.

From the RenderMan 24.0 release notes

  • XPU™ — Pixar’s hybrid CPU + GPU rendering technology is a next-generation rendering engine, rewritten for speed and efficiency on film production assets. This first phase of XPU is focused on accelerating look development for shading artists.  XPU is only available in the Commercial version of RenderMan
  • MaterialX Lama — A state-of-the-art material layering system developed at Industrial Light & Magic introduces a modular approach to building material networks and includes new work on dispersion and energy conservation
  • Stylized Looks™ — Move beyond physically based shading and lighting into a world where you can easily create a variety of styles for your projects.  You can non-destructively control outlines, create sketch patterns, and develop a wide range of unique looks, including Anime, by using the same familiar toolset. Stylized Looks is available only in the Commercial version of RenderMan
  • OpenColorIO — Robust support for the industry-standard ACES colour management system and other colour spaces in all bridge products, including the interactive RenderMan Image Tool
  • Live Statistics — Watch your rendering resource usage live, thanks to a completely redesigned statistics system that prioritizes interactivity and extensibility
  • New Patterns — We are continually working to provide more artistic options for your look development. New with this release are production-proven technologies Hex Tiling Manifold and Phasor Noise
  • Light Baking — Greatly enhance your real-time and VR rendering needs by baking lighting to 2D texture maps or Point Clouds
  • OSL Patterns — We have converted the great majority of C++ patterns to OSL. This conversion allows the sharing of code between RIS and XPU, which provides confidence that the renders from RenderMan XPU are representative of what you will see in RenderMan RIS. C++ patterns are still supported, but they will only work in RIS
  • Better Sampling — Blue noise dithering results in a perceptually cleaner image sooner
  • Updates to Artist Tools — Support for Autodesk’s Maya, Foundry’s Katana, and SideFX’s Houdini and Solaris (including support for LPEs and AOVs in Solaris).
  • Preset Browser — Now supports Presets for MaterialX Lama and Stylized Looks and ships with examples for both.
  • RenderMan for Blender — And last but not least, a new plugin for cutting edge RenderMan features in the open-source content creation tool. Rewritten to take full advantage of the architecture of version 24.

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