What's New in Rendering and Render Setup

New Viewport 2.0

The new Viewport 2.0 provides large scene performance optimization and higher quality lighting and shaders. It allows for higher interactivity: you can tumble complex scenes with many objects as well as large objects with heavy geometry.

To switch to Viewport 2.0, select Renderer > Viewport 2.0 from the Panel Menus.

Watch: Viewport 2.0 in Maya

New Hypershade design

You can now use the new Hypershade design for an easier and faster way to create render nodes. The new design provides a search feature and allows for easy navigation.

You can also create a favorites list in order to easily access your most commonly used shaders.

The Create Render Node window and the Assign New Material window also feature this new design.

Furthermore, the Assign New Material window has additional features that simplify your workflow when you assign a shader to surfaces.

Additional utility nodes, such as Add Matrix, Choice, and Decompose Matrix, are now also available through the Hypershade.

New 2D Pan/Zoom feature available

You can now use this feature to pan and zoom in 2D and view the results in your scene view for detailed tracking and rotoscoping work. Using this feature, you can easily toggle in and out of pan/zoom mode.

The pan/zoom mode does not render by default and therefore you have the option of rendering the full camera view or the pan/zoom view. In addition, you can also create 2D Pan/Zoom bookmarks.

You can access this feature by selecting View > Camera Attribute Editor > Display Options > 2D Pan/Zoom or by selecting View > Camera Tools > 2D Pan/Zoom Tool.

Watch: 2D Pan/Zoom in Maya

New stereoscopic camera features

New Multi-Camera Rig Tool

Use the Multi-Camera Rig Tool to create a multi-camera rig of two or more stereoscopic cameras. You can customize the default multi-camera rig or define your own. You can customize the number of layers in your rig as well as the rig type for every layer. Choose between the standard stereo camera or any custom rig that you have registered.

Linking a stereo camera with a set of objects

You can link your stereo camera with a group of objects as a set. This feature is most useful when you have multiple stereo cameras in your scene and you want to have different stereo settings for different objects.

Select Stereo > Make Links to link your camera with a set of objects.

Color management support

Color profile support

You can now control the color profile associated with inputs to and outputs from the rendering process. Using this feature, you can specify a color space for input textures and specify to the renderer a color space for use with shaders and color calculation. You can associate color profiles with these elements:

  • file textures
  • render passes
  • mentalrayTexture nodes
  • mentalrayOutputPass nodes

To enable color management, use the Render Settings: Common tab. Then, you can select the color space for each of your individual nodes via its Attribute Editor.

Watch: Color profile support in Maya

Displaying HDR images in the Render View

You can now display 32-bit floating point HDR images in the Render View. This way, you can use color management to control the color profile associated with the image file and the display output. You can also apply color grading and preview it in the Render View window, as well as specify a custom calibration file.

Furthermore, with this feature, you can adjust the image contrast and exposure, allowing you to view details in over-bright and over-dark regions of an HDR image.

You can access the color management options from the Render View window by selecting Display > Color Management.

Watch: Using color management in the Render View

New ambient occlusion pass attributes

You can now customize your ambient occlusion pass by tweaking these attributes: number of ambient occlusion rays, Spread, Output Mode, Maximum Distance and so forth. You can access all of these attributes through the ambient occlusion pass Attribute Editor.

New render passes supported by mia_material_x_passes shader


The mia_material_x_passes shader now provides support for additional render passes such as: Diffuse Without Shadows, Direct Irradiance Without Shadows, Raw Shadow, Shadow, Specular Without Shadows, Translucence Without Shadows.

For a list of all the passes that are supported by the mia_material_x_passes shader, see:

New final gather attributes available


A new No FG Caching option has been added to the Render Settings: Indirect Lighting tab that enables you to disable final gather caching completely and always perform the full and accurate final gather computation. This option may reduce rendering times, depending on your scene complexity.

The new Normal Tolerance option allows you to specify the maximum angle up to which a final gather point normal may deviate from the surface normal for the final gather point to be considered for interpolation. A higher value reduces rendering time while a lower value may slow down rendering.

Optimization for single objects now available for ambient occlusion and custom transfer maps


You can now choose between optimization for multiple objects and for single objects when creating ambient occlusion and custom transfer maps. Select Lighting/Shading > Transfer Maps to open the Transfer Maps editor and select between these two options under the Optimization drop-down box.

New mental ray shaders added


Two new mental ray shaders are now included: mia_photometric_light and mia_ciesky.

The mia_photometric_light shader balances the photon energy and density with the light intensity and the mia_ciesky shader can be used for lighting analysis.

Backburner now supported for use with Maya on Mac OS X


You can now use Backburner with Maya on the Mac OS X platform.

New shadowmap camera for directional lights


You can now use the new shadow map camera to control the area of focus for directional lights.