We have tested for you: 3ds Max 2019

What’s new in 3ds Max 2019?

The major innovation that has made headlines was the OSL support.
What is this? OSL means Open Shading Language, this shading description language has been developed by Sony Pictures Imageworks. It was already implemented in Blender and compatible with Arnold and Vray. Hence, it is a tool that allows us to describe textures and materials. On one hand, it lacks of intuitivity but on the other hand it is extremely powerful.

So far, 3ds Max 2019 doesn’t support OSL map (textures creation) and not yet OSL closures (the equivalent of materials). We expected a bit more, but the OSL maps functionality is already a nice thing.

There are two ways to use OSL maps. Either we load a ready-to-use file and we modify the available settings or we directly use the programmation language to code.

For instance, Random by Index is one of the ready-to-use features, without coding. It allows the user to create variations on whatever setting. It is always useful to have randomization tools in order to easily add any kind of variations and also to increase the realism of your scene.

In the new maps, there is also something new: « Advanced Wood ». Usually, I’m not a huge fan of this type of ready-to- use procedurals. I would definitely prefer a photograph or to design it by myself with Substance Designer. Though, I must admit that this procedural is well made: not too many settings and it is user-friendly. Moreover the texture is generated in 3D, which allows us to have the plank side as well as the crosscut wood.

Let’s add a word about the following new feature: Shape Booleans. It gives us the possibility to make boolean calculations with splines. These functionalities are not oriented toward the wow-effect. Still, it is nice to get some functionalities that are productivity-oriented!

Anticipated collaboration with the plugins editors

One of the most common issues of a software release is the incompatibility of the various plugins. Autodesk and its editors have closely collaborated in order to ease our transition from 3ds Max 2018 towards the 2019 version. More than 150 major plugins are ready for the launch of the 2019 version: it will guarantee a fast and smooth transition!

Christophe Bicchierai

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