Version 1.2.0

This update adds the project material panel, which lets you easily work with materials across your scene, improved real time shadow rendering, and other enhancements and fixes.

Some graphic assets sourced from the Adobe Stock asset library. Artists: ‘svetolk,’ 'max-776', 'softulka' and 'nadezda-grapes'.


Project materials panel

As a scene building tool, understanding how materials are in use across your scene is critical to working in Stager!  With this release we've introduced the new project material panel, which lets you see materials across your entire project.  Any time you import a material (or a model with materials) you'll see the materials listed in the project material panel.  You can import materials from disk, the starter assets, or CC Libraries.  You can then easily select them to edit their properties and assign them throughout your scene.


This new system is entirely additive - all of the previous functionality of Stager continues to work.  You can select objects in the scene panel and then use the properties panel to find materials on a specific object.  Having these two ways of working means you can think at object or scene scale for whatever is most efficient.

There's also a ton of new functionalities for managing your materials.  You can reuse materials more easily by assigning directly from the project material panel.  You can also keep unused materials in your project while you're experimenting so you can swap between them easily.  The right-click context menu gives you great management capabilities like duplicating materials and assigning materials to selections so you can apply materials to many objects or even swap materials through the whole scene.

Learn more about the project materials panel


Send materials to Stager from Designer

With the new project materials panel in place, you can now also send materials to Stager from your other favorite material creation tool: Designer!  These one-click sends make gathering assets for use in your project extremely quick.  The materials will be part of your document, saved in your project materials panel.  Future enhancements for sending multiple assets or saving to a cross-project location are things we have in mind as well!

Learn more about Stager's interop workflows with other apps.



Real time shadows for environment lighting

Stager is a great app for quickly getting a scene together.  Our ray traced rendering produces gorgeous, photorealistic results easily.  Now, we're also improving the real time rendering view!  In Stager 1.2 we've completely overhauled our real time shadow system, replacing our previous drop shadows with a new technique that uses a hybrid approach of screen space shadows and voxel shadows.  The new technique provides real time shading from your environment light.  This makes working in real time mode a truly beautiful experience that will be extremely close to your final rendering result. 

Learn more about Stager's rendering system.



Enhancements

Realtime render settings presets

As we invest into rendering, controlling settings to balance performance and quality is extremely important!  To help manage settings we've added presets for real time, similar to the existing ones for ray tracing.  They follow the same levels - draft, medium, high, and ultra - and will help you quickly choose a setting that works for your scene and device.  You can fine tune your settings at any time!


Scene panel swipe

Little things that speed up your work matter!  You can now click and drag in the scene panel to toggle states like lock, visibility, and collision, across multiple objects quickly.


Rendering improvements

  • Improved rendering for edges eliminates dark rendered polygons, especially with displacement.
  • Improved shadow termination on low polygon models to reduce artifacts.


Release Notes

1.2.0

(Released April 26, 2022)
Summary : A new project material panel and improved real time shadows, and performance enhancements all make Stager faster to use.

Added:

  • [Materials panel] Added the new project material panel
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to see all materials in a project with base color as thumbnail
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to create a new default material in the project material panel
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to import materials to the project materials panel from disk, starter assets, and CC Libraries
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to use materials from the project materials panel via drag-n-drop to viewport, scene panel, and properties panel
  • [Materials panel] Added a right-click context menu to assign materials to selected objects
  • [Materials panel] Added a right-click context menu to assign materials to other selected materials in order to replace them through the scene
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to keep unused materials in the project
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to select unused materials
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to select all materials
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to sort materials by name, add order, and in use
  • [Materials panel] Added the ability to switch between grid and list views
  • [Properties panel] Updated the properties panel to display properties for selections from both the scene panel and project materials panel.
  • [Scene panel] Added the ability to swipe across objects to toggle states like lock, visibility, and collision, across multiple objects.
  • [Scene panel] Added the ability to select cameras with other object types, making it easier to delete, group, or otherwise manage selections.
  • [Rendering] Added new real time shadows for environment lighting
  • [Rendering] Added new render settings for real time shadows for environment lighting (quality, resolution, samples, opacity)
  • [Rendering] Improved the visualization of the environment light when used as the background - was previously clamping colors too much
  • [Rendering] Added new 4X antialiasing for real time rendering
  • [Rendering] Added new render setting presets for real time rendering (draft, medium, high, ultra)
  • [Performance] Improved performance when editing image based lighting (environment lights or light layers) while raytracing is enabled.
  • [CC Libraries] Updated to CC Libraries version 3.19, bringing the latest bug fixes and features from the Libraries team.
  • [Substance Engine] Updated to Substance Engine 8.5.1 for support of the latest Substance material graphs from Substance 3D Designer
  • [Substance Model Engine] Updated to Substance Model Engine 1.6.1 for support of the latest Substance model graphs from Substance 3D Designer

Changed:

  • [Rendering] Removed the previous drop shadow real time rendering technique
  • [Rendering] Removed non-interactive rendering mode. Previously we had interactive raytracing as a render setting. When on, raytracing would continue to be on while editing. When off, raytracing would automatically swap back to real time during interactions then swap back to raytracing after an interaction. This was used by a very low number of people and caused some code complexity. In order to provide the best experience and focus on quality overall we've removed this option. You can use real time or raytracing, but it will no longer automatically swap between them during interactions.
  • [Export] Removed the export resolution (DPI) settings. This setting only affected exported PSD "DPI" settings for print resolution. No change to pixel render resolutions was made.
  • [Environment lighting tool] Removed the tool option to rotate your environment light vertically. This was not used and causing some bugs.

Fixed:

  • [Crashes] Triaged and resolved a number of rendering crashes. Many reported crashes are about running out of GPU memory. The team is continuing to investigate how we can more seamlessly inform when GPU memory is full and switch gracefully to CPU rendering.
  • [UI] Resolved an issue where the tool options could break if opened while the color picker or depth-of-field viewport selection action was enabled
  • [Substance models] Resolved an issue where UV position nodes wouldn't update in the real time render view for Substance models (SBSM)
  • [Rendering] Resolved an issue where displacement caused black artifacts on the edges of models
  • [Rendering] Resolved several issues where low polygon count could cause shadow termination artifacts in ray tracing
  • [Files] Resolved an issue where saved files were accidentally saving duplicate texture data. Stager will no longer duplicate data. Previously saved files will fix themselves on load. This can result in file sizes being reduced by 5-50%.
  • [Properties panel] Resolved an issue where the scroll position would reset when collapsing or expanding groups.
  • [Viewport] Fixed an issue where material drag and drop would not work on some parts of the viewport.
  • [Viewport] Fixed an issue where the select tool would not properly highlight meshes when over some parts of the viewport.
  • [Starter assets] Updated the “Cloth backdrop” asset so it doesn’t crash the app when interacting with some tools.