The latest version of Pixologic’s digital sculpting app is announced with enhancements to FiberMesh, Best Preview Render, and the interface, as well as the addition of Vector Displacement Maps and the NoiseMaker plugin
Last month, Pixologic released ZBrush 4R2b. In addition to enhancing the Best Preview Render (BPR) capabilities of ZBrush, the upgrade patch also added innnovative and exciting features such as FiberMesh and MicroMesh.
Today Pixologic has announced the upcoming release of ZBrush 4R3. This update includes new features and expands the features introduced in previous versions. As Jim Thacker writes on CG Channel, “Our hopes of ZBrush 4R2d2 are dashed… Lots of cool tools, though, including the NoiseMaker plugin.” (Ha, ha, ZBrush 4R2D2!)
Alongside many features and enhancements, ZBrush 4R3 will now be released with NoiseMaker, the procedural texture-generation plugin.
This powerful enhancement to ZBrush 4R3 allows you to create a wide variety of noise and patterns. With over 25 parametric generators, limitless combinations, and the ability to work in both 3D and UV mode, NoiseMaker is looks like a neat solution.
NoiseMaker uses interpolated masking per polygon for an accurate display of noise and patterns even on lower polygon meshes. It also features a larger preview window and new masking capabilities to provide multiple scaling options to your noise.
NoiseMaker, the procedural texture-generation plugin, will now be released with ZBrush 4R3
Significant advancements to the FiberMesh settings provide you with greater control and flexibility. Curve modifiers have now been added to a number of FiberMesh settings including: Length, Coverage, Gravity and Color Profile. Revolve has also been added as a new setting. Textures applied to FiberMesh and MicroMesh objects can now be transparent (true black pixels will be hidden), allowing even greater diversity in their use. FiberMesh settings can now be saved and loaded as needed it. In addition, various FiberMesh presets will ship with ZBrush 4R3. These presets can be pre-viewed in Lightbox, as well as modified and shared amongst ZBrush artists. Once you have styled your FiberMesh to perfection, export the fiber guides to other applications for further use. Moreover, fibers can also be exported as unique vector displacement maps to be rendered in external applications.
Vector Displacement Maps
ZBrush 4R3 will export both 16-bit and 32-bit Vector Displacement maps, providing you with a powerful and easy way to export your sculpted details to other programs for rendering. Take full advantage of the capabilities inside rendering engines by using maps to displace the surface in any direction, including undercuts.
BPR to Geo
You can now convert your MicroMesh and FiberMesh renders into actual geometry with a single click. The resulting geometry can be further edited. With the additions of the dot preview and Spin Edge features, control the direction of any MicroMesh before rendering or converting into geometry for future edits.
Sub-palette sections will allow you to control the length of each sub-palette simply by collapsing or un-collapsing sub-sections. Show what you need, when you need it! Moreover, a new Magnify option allows you to zoom into portions of the canvas or interface. This is especially useful when recording videos or turntables.
With the ability to cast shadows and silhouettes based on any Micromesh and FiberMesh (including fibers with a transparent texture applied), the ZBrush 4R3 BPR (best preview render) rendering system takes your final image a step further.
ZBrush 4R3 will include a new web-enabled update feature. Enjoy “click of a button” access to check if new updates or plugins are available from Pixologic. Never miss a new plugin or enhancement!
There’s no more talk of the remeshing solution, codenamed QRemesher, but despite this R43 looks to be a significant update. As usual, the update will be available free to registered users – it is due to ship on 28 February 2012.
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