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What's New in VUE 2016 R4

Stereoscopic Rendering

Click on the square icon to open the 360 stereo viewer in Full Screen mode. Render ©VUE Artist Drea Horvath.

Click on the square icon to open 360 viewer in Full Screen mode. Renders ©VUE Artist Vladimir Chopine and Barry Marshall.

To see these images in Stereo, you must view this webpage using your mobile device, and use a cardboad-like viewer.

VUE Studio 2016 allows you to render your scenes in Stereo for Stills and Animations. Stereoscopic rendering is available for both panoramic (360° and 180°) and non-panoramic renders. Stereo renders are compatible with most of VUE's Render Options, such as multi-pass or High Dynamic Range (HDR) for instance.

Interpupillary Distance is user defined (default: 6.4 cm) as well as final image layout (top/bottom or left/right). For maximum customization, VUE Studio 2016 offers 3 convergence modes for handling paralax: Parallel, Converged and Off-axis.

Stereo images and videos are automatically recognized by Stereo-compliant platforms (such as Youtube for instance) and can be played on stereo compliant devices such as Occulus Rift, HTC Vive, Nvidia 3DVision, Sony PSVR, Google DayDream, Google Carboard etc.

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©VUE Art by Alen Vejzovic

180 Degree VR Panoramas

Rendering in 360° can sometimes take a lot of computing resources. VUE Studio 2016 now offers VR180 Panoramic still and animation rendering, which in essence will render a 180° vertical and horizontal FOV of your scene. VR180 will be ideal to save some rendering time, for those instances where you don't need to render what's behind the camera!

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©VUE Art by Alessandro Mancini

Path Tracer Renderer Improvements

  • The VUE Path Tracer now supports normal mapping.
  • You can specify the OpenCL devices that should be used for the Path Tracer: All Available Devices, GPU Devices Only, or CPU Devices Only.

Misc. UX/UI Improvements

  • Improved 4K/HiDPI display compatibility.
  • Better responsiveness and faster computation of Procedural Terrain within the Terrain Editor.

What's New in VUE 2016 R3

UX/UI improvements:

  • Major performance/responsiveness/stability improvements
  • All software titles are now available in English, French and German
  • Higher quality display in Render Scene preview for soft shadows
  • Better handling of editor window manipulations
  • Support for HiDPI screens on MacOS
  • Faster computing of Spline operations for HeightField Terrains
  • Application can now use up to 12 CPUs

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Optimized scene saving process:

  • Up to 4x faster scene saving
  • Up to 2x smaller file size
  • 3 New scene saving modes: Default, Consolidated Archive, Network Rendering

HDR Rendering:

  • Major improvements in dynamic range depth when using Spectral Atmospheres
  • New optional Sun Visibility parameter for Spectral Atmospheres
  • Automatic de-activation of Tone-Mapping when saving HDR pictures

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Path Tracer renderer improvements:

  • Adds support for Spectral Cloud layers
  • Support for 'Don’t cast shadows' and 'Disable Indirect Lighting' material properties
  • New Translucent material type
  • Now supports Soft Shadows and Blurry Reflections/Refractions

Cloud Modulation:

  • New Cloud Opacity modulation (requires the AdvancedGraph module)
  • Access local coordinates for color settings (requires the AdvancedGraph module)

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What's New in VUE 2016 R2

360° VR Panoramas

Click on the square icon to open 360 viewer in Full Screen mode. ©VUE Artist Rudi Hendrich.

VUE Studio 2016 allows you to render 360 degrees panorama, as static images or animations. They are compatible with all of VUE's Render Options, such as High Dynamic Range (HDR) for instance.

When rendering a VR panorama, VUE Studio 2016 offers to automatically and perfectly level the camera to avoid unwanted distortion.

Rendered VR panoramas are automatically recognized by Facebook, YouTube (and other panoramic compliant platforms) as 360° images or videos.

Click on the square icon to open 360 viewer in Full Screen mode. Renders ©VUE Artist Rudi Hendrich and Barry Marshall.

Other User Experience Improvements

VUE Studio 2016 R2 also introduces a list of UX/UI improvements, such as:

Terrain modeling:

  • "Blend Terrain with Image" automatically modifies the Heightfield Terrain function graph (instead of modifying the terrain Heightmap).
  • Simplified "Resample Terrain" replaces "Resize Terrain", to update terrain resolution without changing its size within the scene.

User Interface:

  • "Interactive slider changes" option now also affects the mouse wheel for more dynamic visual display of your modifications in real-time.
  • Improved visibility in viewports thanks to reworked wireframe selection colors.
  • The User Interface is now locked when downloading an object or a scene from the extra content.


  • Easier access and edition of multi-material thanks to sub-menu hierarchy display.
  • And more...

HeightField Terrain Technology - More flexible and a lot more Powerful!

With VUE Studio 2016, we're introducing a brand new terrain modeling technology, more flexible and a lot more powerful, called "Heightfield Terrains".

This new technology allows you to add terrain effects that were previously impossible to achieve, such as Hydrological & Thermal Simulations!

Similar to procedural terrains, Heightfield Terrains are based on a function graph, but baked on a fixed-resolution grid. This will give you more flexibility and add more realism to your terrains. Heightfield Terrains are also significantly faster to render!

Heighfield terrains are manually sculptable and parameters can be animated - e.g. to simulate a terrain erosion over time for instance!

And finally, you can easily set up your graph outputs to drive your material presence, directly from within the Terrain Editor interface.

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The Heightfield Terrains technology comes with its set of new dedicated nodes and presets, like 9 different Erosion presets and Slope, Convexity, Blur or Terrace nodes.

New Layout Nodes also let you design a terrain's "layout" (most prominent features) using hand-drawn elements like Splines, elements from the scene, or simple shapes (circles, rectangles, rounded rectangles) (requires the AdvancedGraph module) .

Start as simple as drawing a line, let the power of the Terrain Editor do the rest!

Additionally, all terrain presets in the terrain Editor were reworked, and VUE Studio 2016 now ships with 42 terrain samples.

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>> Learn more about Terrain Modeling Technologies in VUE Studio 2016

Hybrid GPU/CPU Interactive Path Tracer

GPU rendering comes to VUE with the new Path Tracer renderer. This renderer naturally and automatically simulates real-life lighting, and automatically calculates many effects that have to be specifically set with other methods, such as depth of field, caustics, ambient occlusion, and indirect lighting.

Path tracing in VUE Studio 2016 is available as an interactive rendering quality in the viewports, as well as an offline rendering engine .

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>> Learn more about Rendering Technologies in VUE Studio 2016

EcoSystem Improvements

Easily and quickly add more realism to your scenes.
Improve your productivity at the same time!

PlantFactory Preset Variations

PlantFactory 2015 introduced the concept of Presets. PlantFactory 2016 now introduces the concept of Preset Variations.

Preset Variations allow you to immediately include subtle differences to your plant (change the number of buds on a blooming flower, or its petal colors for instance).

This new feature allows you to easily add variety to create realistic environments with one single plant species!

Within VUE Studio 2016, you directly get access to the PlantFactory species presets and variations within the Plant Browser, the Plant Editor and within your EcoSystem population list (requires the EcoPainter module).

So, at every step of your scene creation process, you are able to select the species you want, the preset you want and the variations you want!

Multiple Global EcoSystems and EcoPainter Improvements

The features described below require the EcoPainter module.

VUE Studio 2016 now allows you to populate your scenes with multiple Global EcoSystems layers (i.e. not linked to any underlying material). You can save your Global EcoSystem populations as EcoPainter brushes, and re-use them at any time, in any scene!

VUE Studio 2016 ships with 12 EcoPainter brushes to get you started. Populations in your EcoSystem brushes can also be used in any standard EcoSystem material!

VUE Studio 2016 includes 20 EcoPainter effector brushes, including a new Rotate effector to dynamically alter the placement of your EcoSystem populations.

Memory Saving Technologies

You can now optimize memory consumption by using baked (static or dynamic) versions of PlantFactory species for your EcoSystem populations, or by converting any referenced assets in your scenes to EcoSystem Instances (requires the EcoPainter module).

>> Learn more about the EcoSystem Technologies in VUE Studio 2016

Optimized Workspace and Workflow

  • Split Camera Control Panel: Scene preview and Camera Controls
  • Resize the EcoPainter Dialog (requires the EcoPainter module)
  • Optimized Extrapolation/Interpolation commands by creating references instead of hard copies
  • Set VUE to automatically create a Scene Snapshot after each render
  • Scene snapshot preview in OS browser is automatically created after the render
  • Compatible with HiDPI displays
  • Scenes and assets thumbnail previews in Windows Explorer
  • Automatic detection of global scale factor (from file format and source software) when importing scenes or assets
  • Export original maps for meshes with Uvs (requires the Exporter module)
  • Export objects as Collada (requires the Exporter module)

>> Learn more about Interface and Workflow features in VUE Studio 2016

Further Information

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EcoSystem Generation 4

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Natural Elements

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Interface & Workflow

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Import & Export