Foundry Release Katana 3.5

Katana. No scene too large. No endless waiting. Just more time to be creative, smash deadlines, and exceed expectations.

Core performance – time to first pixel

Katana’s core has been completely rewritten engine to be completely multithreaded, making an already formidable tool 2-30x faster in handing over information to a rendering plugin. The result: drastically reduced time to first pixel so artists can iterate faster and more frequently. This engine overhaul also allows for farm renders to scale up with the most recent advancements of server CPUs, whilst future-proofing any other advancements in the CPU space.

Core performance – rendered image refresh rate

Improvements to the performance of Katana’s display of rendered pixels means that Katana 3.5 now shows rendered images in its Monitor or Monitor Layer just as fast as external 2D image viewing tools. Artists no longer have to choose between functionality and viewing speed, since they’re neatly tied together in this latest release. Memory leak bugs that would otherwise bloat Katana’s use of RAM have also been mended so artists can work faster, whilst using less memory.

Monitor Layer

Katana’s new Monitor Layer brings artists closer to their work by allowing them to interact with ray traced renders directly in the viewer. With the image and the tools that manipulate the image in the same place, artists now have a streamlined, holistic experience. This workflow also comes with a performance boost, with drastic improvements to refresh rates of large images with or without large numbers of AOVs.

Network Material Create Improvements

Improvements to Katana’s Shading Group mechanism allow artists to make customised shading groups with user defined input and output connections. Shading Groups can now be whole materials or regularly utilised blocks of shading nodes. Simple workflows allow selected nodes to turn into Shading Groups via a hotkey, both in large numbers, and with better interactivity.

Katana USD Import nodes based on USD 19.11

Katana 3.5 includes new USD Import nodes based on the production source code from Pixar, which we’ve tweaked and optimised to make them render-agnostic, and shipped as an opt-in tool so users can set up, experiment and use USD in production with Katana.

Core USD updated to USD 19.11

As part of our ongoing commitment to USD, Katana 3.5 features the most recent USD source code so artists and studios can use the latest version of Maya plugins, Houdini 18 and Katana together in one pipeline for seamless cross-software collaboration.

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