June 13
LightWave [6] Gets Update
Free download offers faster render speeds

by David Nagel
Executive Producer

LightWave 6.0b now offers a vector motion blur, which can speed up rendering times up to 1,000 percent, according to NewTek.

NewTek today announced the availability of LightWave 6.0b, a new update to its 3D application that received a major upgrade last month. One of the key upgrades was faster render times, which the company says have been improved "drastically" through code optimization.

"All software products require periodic service revisions, which generally consist only of bug fixes and minor optimizations," said Brad Peebler, vice president of 3D graphics tools for NewTek, in a released statement. "With the 6.0b upgrade for LightWave [6], we decided to go beyond these traditional fixes to also add dozens of new features and even more incredible performance. This 6.0b update also provided a great test of our new architecture in LightWave [6]: We were able to add features rapidly and get them to customers faster than ever, which bodes well for our next major release."

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Other improvements include:

  • Vector-based motion blur: New motion blur filters augment or replace the built-in, multi-pass motion blur. This can reduce render times by up to 1,000 percent.
  • HyperVoxels update: HyperVoxels bounding areas now appear in real time in OpenGL and use the new Sprites mode for fast volumetric effects.
  • Per polygon UV mapping tools: These tools provide two different methods of UV texturing for objects—continuous polygon mapping or the new per polygon mapping.
  • Texture VMapping tool: Animators can use the texture engine to create vertex maps (VMaps), which provide new tools for modeling and animating organics and characters.

The new version is available for the Macintosh as a free download for LightWave [6] owners and as a full retail package priced at $2,495. For more information, visit http://www.newtek.com. To download the upgrade, visit http://www.lightwave6.com.

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