Houdini 13

Fri 1st Nov 2013 | News

Side Effects Software has revealed and opened for immediate release the company's Houdini 13 software.


The new vew version includes faster, more flexible Particle tools, a new Alembic-based lighting workflow and support for OpenSubdiv and OpenEXR 2.

Side Effects' Houdini 13 includes a finite element solver for bending and tearing FX, a new multi- threaded particle architecture integrated into Houdini’s existing dynamics context and a new lighting workflow to efficiently handle massive datasets. The Finite Element solver analyses the stresses on solid objects, then either bends or breaks each shape. This new solver is ideal for creating realistic destruction shots or soft body FX with volume preservation.


The new particle architecture has been fully integrated into the dynamics context to provide seamless interaction with other simulation tools. This vex-based framework is multi-threaded and allows for speeds up to 10x faster as well as cached results for scrubbing in the timeline. There are also new particle tools and forces including Axis Force which uses 3D volumes to control particles.


Houdini 13’s new lighting workflow has been built to efficiently manage huge datasets. This new workflow offers a new data tree view for assigning materials and lights to the objects and groups found in Alembic files as well as Houdini’s new Packed Primitive objects. This new workflow is linear out of the box and combined with improvements to Mantra’s quality and performance offers a powerful and reliable lighting solution.



Houdini continues to support industry standards which make it easier for artists to work in a multi-application environment. OpenEXR 2 by ILM is now supported to allow for deep compositing of Mantra renderings in Nuke. Houdini 13 also incorporates OpenSubdiv from Pixar which provides viewport subdivision display, geometry-level refinement, native Mantra integration and support for crease weights. Integration of OpenVDB from DreamWorks Animation continues to evolve and plays a big part in making the new particle fluid surfacer faster and more memory efficient.

This feature-rich release also includes an enhanced Bullet solver which is significantly faster, more scalable and more accurate. This solver also supports most geometry types out of the box and is even capable of operating on points. The FLIP fluid and Ocean FX tools in Houdini continue to evolve with a new mist solver; the splash tank, which gives artists the ability to add FLIP sims on top of Ocean surfaces; new shelf tools; and a new, faster Fluid surfacer.


Houdini 13 can be downloaded from immediately with the base version of Houdini available for as low as US$1,995 and Houdini FX available for as low as US$4,495. Both these prices include first year on the Annual Upgrade Plan which provides production-level support, and access to daily builds and dot releases. The free Apprentice Edition and the US$99 watermark-free Houdini Apprentice HD are also available immediately.


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