Color Ramp Improvements


Let’s be honest, these have been a long time coming – in fact the lack of some easy and precise controls for color ramps used to be one of  the things I hated the most, I use them quite a lot. In fact, it was even pretty high on my Todo list for Node Wrangler to add these features myself, though I couldn’t find a simple and usable way to do it.

But luckily, Krantz Geoffroy (kgeogeo) has come to the rescue, bringing a Position slider for precise control over the location of the active color stop. Other new additions include an input for the index of the active stop (in case you have trouble selecting the right one) and some welcome rearrangements of buttons (including the color ramps in BI textures and the rest of the UI)

I suppose the only thing left on my wishlist for Color Ramp features is some more interpolations, like squared and cubed  falloff, and the inverse of each.

Oh and in case you were wondering where I disappeared to for the last two weeks, I was on holiday in Scotland visiting (and meeting for the first time) my Blender Nerd partner Rex :) but more on that later.

Link Juggling Removed

From the commit logs:

(r61178Lukas Toenne)
Removed the automatic “link swapping” feature from the node link operator: When a link was being dragged to an already connected input, the existing links were shifted to the next free socket.

This was originally intended as a way to speed up workflow for math and mix nodes, but more often than not it just gets in the way. Most binary (or n-ary) functions are not even commutative, i.e. changing the order of sockets does not usually produce the correct result.

Also this includes the more common case where one actually wants to replace a socket, which then requires a second click to remove the shifted connection.

All in all this is not a helpful feature.

I think we can all agree this is a change for the better :)

Sure there are some times where it’s useful, but it’s mostly just annoying. If you really miss it, fear not, in the next release of Node Wrangler there’ll be a feature for all you lazy bastards.

SSS on GPU… works?

Mail from Thomas today:

“…with latest SVN this surprisingly works?! Simply enabling the feature and compile the CUDA kernel (sm_21 tested here, on Geforce 540M). As far as I can tell it renders correct with all fallof modes. Have not messured performance yet.”

Confirmed by benchmark tests on BA (win64 test build available) – definitely faster than CPU and seems to have no issues. Magic! It works and we have no idea why! Perhaps Brecht can spread some light on it this Sunday, for now I shall believe the path-tracing gods are at work.

However we can be pretty sure it won’t make it to 2.69, since that’s currently in feature-freeze, bug fixes only. But 2.70 is a good bet!

Auto Tile Size Addon Updated


[Download] [Documentation]

NOTE! An even newer version is available!

Just updated!

  • Removed ‘Set’ button – tile size is now automatically updated when changing target, render size or tile size (to manually change tile size, disable Auto Tile Size)
  • Improved accuracy for small tile sizes (result from 16 wasn’t so different from 32)

Remember to report any bugs and crashes or suggestions! Original post