Alias, a Silicon Graphics Inc. (SGI) company, has brought out the next version of its award-winning 3D animation and special effects software Maya 6, featuring hundreds of new features and enhancements requested by Maya users from both large and small organizations working in film, broadcast, game development, digital publishing and visualization markets. These developments can be seen at NAB in Alias suite #S111 at the Las Vegas Convention Center where Maya artists will conduct demos hourly.
Apples new Shake 3.5, features new shape-based morphing and warping tools for advanced compositing and new shape shifting special effects, fine-tuned to take advantage of the performance and architecture of the Power Mac G5 and Mac OS X version 10.3 Panther.
Softimage Co., a subsidiary of Avid Technology, Inc., has released SOFTIMAGE|XSI4.0 - the latest version of the industry's leading nonlinear 3D production environment and has made it available in three distinct configurations at breakthrough prices: XSI Advanced, XSI Essentials, and the new entry-level XSI Foundation. Version 4.0 delivers advanced toolsets, dramatic performance enhancements, and advancements to the core architecture of the software, including new customization, project management and workgroup capabilities.
In conjunction with NAB, NVIDIA has announced the release of Gelato, the first 3D final-film renderer accelerated by industry-standard graphics hardware; the Quadro FX 4000, a professional graphics solution; and Quadro FX 4000 SDI, a workstation-based graphics solution enabling weather, news, sports and virtual-set broadcast as well as video and film post-production.
HP has announced an expanded relationship with DreamWorks and a new deal with Warner Bros. to clean up the image quality of Technicolor films in Warner Bros. library.
HP and DreamWorks will team on new technologies for off-site animation rendering and remote collaboration. Built on a technology partnership that began in 2001, the collaboration provides DreamWorks Animation with state-of-the-art technology solutions from HP, which will be used on SHREK 2, SHARK TALE, MADAGASCAR and the NBC computer-animated TV series, FATHER OF THE PRIDE.
Discreet has announced accelerating momentum amongst broadcasters and post-production facilities around the world purchasing Discreet systems to deliver on their standard-definition (SD) and high-definition (HD) requirements. From Madrid to Mumbai, and New York to Los Angeles, broadcasters are relying on Discreet's systems to create sophisticated programming, including graphics, promos, commercials and episodics.
Visual Circuits will unveil the first multi-channel, high definition video player, Mantis MC, at NAB 2004 in the Focus Enhancements booth, SL3501. Designed around Visual Circuits' Gemini 2 Universal Media Card, Mantis MC integrates 32-bit accelerated graphics with high definition (HD) video, and scrolling text; supporting Multi-Zone playback and offering extreme flexibility in digital media file integration on one or two display channels.
High-speed data transfers and improved image quality in a streamlined digital mastering and post-production workflow are a few of the benefits of the integrated systems da Vinci and Silicon Graphics will showcase at the NAB2004 exhibition, demonstrating its continued partnership in delivering efficient and robust toolsets to post-production professionals.
New Wave Ent., one of Hollywood's largest entertainment marketing companies, has purchased and installed 30 Avid Media Composer Adrenaline systems running on HP xw8000 workstations, replacing its entire suite of competitive editing solutions.
Imagineer Systems will be debuting monet, its new product for broadcast, film and video post-production, for the first time at NAB in Las Vegas April 19-22. monet is a start-to-finish solution for inserting images (moving and still) into moving footage, with a combination of tools that allow artists to handle everything for complex logo replacements, product packaging alterations and product placement into moving footage, whether it be DV, SD, HD or film.
Discreet has begun shipping its smoke 6 system on the Intel-based IBM workstation running Linux. The smoke 6 editing and finishing system is already available on the Silicon Graphics Octane2 and Silicon Graphics Tezro visual workstations. The addition of Linux workstation support and new pricing ensures that the smoke 6 system is accessible to broadcasters and the growing segment of mid-range post-production facilities.
Bauhaus Software Inc., a leading provider of products and technologies for the digital vfx market, announced support for Leitch Technology's Velocity and VelocityQ NLE platforms in its flagship Mirage product line. Using Leitch's Reality and Quattrus hardware, respectively, to act as a frame buffer for Mirage allows broadcasters and post-production professionals to view the results of their work in real time on an external NTSC/PAL monitor.
Bionatics, a leader in plant modeling software solutions, has been embraced by Gusto Games, the recently formed Oxfordshire-based development studio. Gusto has adopted the natFX package as their plant modeling reference tool.
Tokyo-based Robot Communications relied on Discreets 3ds max to create the introductory cinematic opening sequence for ONIMUSHA 3: DEMON SIEGE, the final installment in the critically acclaimed game series from Capcom. The game, running on Sony Computer Ent.s PlayStation 2 platform, has been available in Japan since February 2004, and is expected to be available April 2004 in North America.
Kaydara Inc. has announced its first middleware solution for game developers, HumanIK | Middleware, a character animation and rigging technology. With HumanIK | Middleware, game developers will now be able to easily embed the character animation technology found in MOTIONBUILDER directly into their game engine. The new product will be available in the second quarter 2004.
Alias announced that U.K.-based game developer Blitz Games is moving its entire game development pipeline to Maya after extensive research of the industry's top game development tools. Blitz has successfully moved two of its five teams to its new Maya software pipeline and is currently utilizing Alias custom Maya training for the remaining teams, in preparation for a switch of its entire pipeline, to be implemented as each new game project begins.
Eovia Corp., developer and publisher of leading 3D software, announced the immediate availability of TransPoser. TransPoser is a full-featured plug-in to dynamically import animated Poser 4 and 5 figures into Carrara Studio 3.
C.O.R.E. Feature Animation-- the newly launched division of C.O.R.E. Digital Pictures -- will deploy BlueArc Corp.'s leading Titan SiliconServer on its first computer-animated feature, THE WILD, a joint project with Disney and San Francisco-based Hoytyboy. As a result, C.O.R.E. Feature Animation is using more than 50 terabytes of storage across three Titan systems to save valuable rendering time and simplify storage management, allowing quicker delivery.
Kaydara Inc. announced the release of MOTIONBUILDER 5.5 Professional, the latest version of the company's popular realtime 3D character animation software. With added support for Python scripting and CgFX shaders, MOTIONBUILDER 5.5 Professional allows 3D animators to create complex character set-ups and animation sequences in minutes instead of the days and weeks required by other systems.
Softimage Co. announced that Los Angeles-based Pandemic Studios, creators of three upcoming console titles, FULL SPECTRUM WARRIOR, MERCENARIES and STAR WARS BATTLEFRONT, is standardizing its entire 3D pipeline with SOFTIMAGE|XSI, the leading nonlinear 3D production environment. The three phase transition, which will take place over the next six months and also includes the purchase of multiple licenses of SOFTIMAGE|XSI software, will replace all competitive 3D tools currently used at Pandemic Studios.
Pixologic Inc. has announced the upcoming release of ZBrush 2, the newest version of its award-winning 2D/3D digital-art creation software, on March 31, 2004. Modeling, texturing and painting features have all benefited from code enhancements and new tools and options provide even more versatility in all areas. Medium- to high-resolution models respond instantly to sculpting actions, constantly rendered and shaded in realtime.
cebas Computer GmbH has announced the release of finalShaders for finalRender Stage-1. finalShaders is the first of many upcoming finalRender Stage-1 material and shader plug-in collections. finalShaders works with finalRender Stage-1 Service Pack 2a or higher. Owners of finalRender Stage-1 can upgrade to Service Pack 2a for free by sending your serial number to email@example.com. finalRender Stage-1 is available for 3ds max4.X, 5.X and 6.
The materials found in finalShaders include: