Arion for Rhinoceros v2.7.0 toolbar

Dear users,

Arion for Rhinoceros v2.7.0 is coming soon.

Among many other improvements that we will detail as soon as we release, we have been doing some improvements in the UI. For example, we have added a toolbar with the most common operations in Arion:

Arion for Rhinoceros toolbar

Thank you for reading!

New installers (and uninstallers)

Dear Arion users,

We have worked a bit on our software setups.

– Now all our plug-in setups feature an uninstaller. Before, only Arion stand-alone would.
– Now all our setups show up in the “Add/Remove Programs” area.
– Now all our setups feature rcconv.exe and rcshellex.exe. Before, only Arion stand-alone would.

In the special case of Arion for Rhinoceros:

– The installer auto-registers the plug-in on first launch.
– The installer handles the plug-in RUI (custom menu and toolbar).
– The uninstaller auto-unregisters the plug-in from Rhino.

New RandomControl installer

Thank you for reading.

LO pro — GPU low priority

Dear users,

We have added a new LO/HI priority switch in the Hardware Configuration panel of all the Arion-based products:

Arion’s low priority toggle

This toggle allows the GPU to breathe, so the system scheduler can gain control of the GPU at regular intervals (e.g., to update the UI). This is of no use for a render-dedicated GPU, but can be of critical importance for a display card which is used to handle the display and to render at the same time.

Arion’s low priority mode in action

A common request that our users and DEMO users have told us about is that Arion exhausts the GPU resources so heavily, that lag in the UI when editing, or when rendering in the background becomes frustrating. Until now, this could only be avoided by excluding the display GPU from the render. While this is a good sign that means that Arion is really exploiting the computing capabilities of the computer, it can become a serious annoyance in some cases. Specially for users with a single GPU in their system.

The new LO prio toggle…

1- …will allow those users (or DEMO users) with a single GPU (shared for display and rendering) to have a smooth UI experience, or even to switch over to other tasks while rendering in the background.

2- …will allow users with multiple GPUs (all of them but one used for rendering exclusively) to use the display card for rendering also, without lagging the UI or the OS.

This feature trades some rendering performance for a much smoother UI/OS, and is of course optional, and disabled by default. After some intensive testing, we have found that the impact in speed is highly dependent on the architecture of the GPUs. It ranges between 15%-40%.

Thanks for reading!

CUDA 6.5

Dear Arion customers/users.

While we’re working on the upcoming Asa v2.7.x, AfR v2.7.x, and Af3 v3.0.x, we have decided to adopt CUDA 6.5. Fortunately, this time the transition between one version of CUDA and the next has been 100% seamless (thanks, nVidia!).

Because of this, the next builds of our products will feature explicit support for sm_50 architectures (i.e., 980 GTX and such), which should bring a tad of extra performance in those cards in particular.

Thank you for reading!

So long, 32-bit

After learning that Rhinoceros 6 will be 64-bit only, and that Autodesk is no longer releasing their products in 32-bit, we have decided to officially retire the 32-bit branch in our build system and product setups.

Since probably ‘nobody’ in the field of high-end Computer Graphics is using 32-bit hardware anymore, this decision will have no effect on any of you. However, this will cut our build times in half, and will alleviate some development overhead here at RandomControl.

Thanks for reading!

Glitches on the website

Dear customers and DEMO downloaders:

We have been doing some maintenance on our Internet server, and the the whole website (specially the Customer Area) has been down for nearly a couple of days. Everything is getting back online now, except for a few things that we’re still working on.

Please accept our apologies for this issue. We have received quite a few e-mails about release, DEMO and license downloads. The Customer Area and the License Manager should be up and running now.

Thank you very much!

ArionFX for Photoshop v3.0.1

Dear customers and DEMO users of ArionFX:

A small percentage of you detected that ArionFX would not show up as a filter in Photoshop in some computers. This was caused by a phantom dependency with the CUDA run-time (despite ArionFX does not use CUDA) that was only happening in the build system we use for releases, and not in our internal builds.

The problem has been fixed now, and the Release and DEMO setups have been updated on the server. So feel free to re-download anytime.

Thank you, and sorry for the inconvenience to those of you who have been affected by the issue!

ArionFX for Photoshop

RandomControl is proud to announce the immediate availability of ArionFX for Photoshop on its website.

ArionFX for Photoshop

Dealing with 32-bit HDR images can still be problematic nowadays, as few software packages support 32-bit formats properly.

ArionFX for Photoshop is a versatile tool that offers a variety of key HDR image processing algorithms designed to function in floating-point 32-bit HDR data. Remarkably, ArionFX operates in Linear Workflow, not washing out your image, and respecting its full dynamic range at all times.

Whether you are a photographer or a CGI artist seeking for advanced HDR tonemapping, firefly removal, glare, bloom, … ArionFX is a must in your toolchain.

ArionFX for Photoshop’s bloom

ArionFX for Photoshop’s color fringe

ArionFX for Photoshop’s glare

ArionFX for Photoshop’s despeckler

Arion 3 page update

Dear users,

We have just updated the Arion 3 presentation page with a new render featuring a tennis ball.

That render makes use of Arion Scatter 3ds Max modifier for the ground (over 2.4 Million instances on this shot) and support for Ephere’s Ornatrix Hair and Fur plug-in for 3ds Max for the ball’s fibers (about 1.5 million fibers with 24 segments each).

Arion 3

Thanks for watching.