Pixar releases RenderMan 24, introduces XPU rendering architecture
June 30, 2021

Pixar releases RenderMan 24, introduces XPU rendering architecture

EMERYVILLE, CA — Pixar has released RenderMan Version 24 (http://renderman.pixar.com), which introduces a next-generation rendering architecture for animation and visual effects called RenderMan XPU. The new release brings major advancements to look development and interactivity for feature film VFX and animation. 

With the launch of XPU, Pixar introduces a new renderer that’s capable of using both CPU and GPU resources. RenderMan XPU adds next level live rendering capabilities to the pipeline, providing immediate feedback on assets of feature film complexity, allowing faster iterations for artists. The release also features a shading system for layered materials called Lama. Originally developed at Industrial Light & Magic, Lama has been proven in production for years. This shading system provides RenderMan’s first step towards a deep MaterialX integration. Another highlight of this release is a completely-new toolset for crafting non-photorealistic renders, called RenderMan Stylized Looks.

Other advancements in Version 24 include bringing OSL support to the GPU through a close collaboration with NVIDIA, along with streamlined support for the industry standard ACES color management system, live statistics, cutting-edge advancements in surface realism, and a complete rewrite of RenderMan for Blender. Additionally, RenderMan artist tools for Autodesk’s Maya, Foundry’s Katana and SideFX Houdini, as well as Solaris, have been updated for Version 24, along with upgrades to RenderMan’s Preset Browser and library of materials.
RenderMan Version 24 is available for download at renderman.pixar.com for customers on maintenance. Individual licenses of RenderMan are available for $595, and $250 for yearly maintenance. Quantity discounts are available. Researchers, individual artists and students creating non-commercial projects will have access to the free non-commercial RenderMan release.