The current state of Maya for Particle & Fluid FX

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  01 January 2014
The current state of Maya for Particle & Fluid FX

With all the new Fluid and Particle plug-ins now available for Maya, I wanted to ask the community what their experiences have been using these tools.
I'm especially interested in how these tools interact.

VRay Phoenix FD - Better than Maya Fluids ?

FumeFX - anyone tried this in Maya yet ?

Krakatoa MY - seems like a great particle renderer, but how do you simulate millions of particles in Maya ?

Exocortex Fury ?

Naiad - nixed by Autodesk, but do people still use it ?

Thanks in advance for your experiences !!

Last edited by billpayer2005 : 01 January 2014 at 07:11 AM.
  01 January 2014
All contributions welcome !

Last edited by billpayer2005 : 01 January 2014 at 07:03 AM.
  01 January 2014
My answers doesn't reflect the whole community or represent any plugins. I am just sharing my personal opinion based on my experience I had with Phoneix, fume & maya fluid. So don't considered this as take away words from me. you gotta try it out by yourself & find out the differences & odds you might experience while using it for personal test or shot production.

Vray Phoneix better than Maya Fluids ? : In someways yes & in someways No.
Maya Fluids is still used in Big houses for shot production & feature films..whereas Phoneix is really good piece of solver & quite fast but it still needs some love & more features to make it fully production friendly & user controllable unlike maya fluids. The options are bit limited with Phoneix but the result of what it can do for both volumetric & liquid effects are pretty amazing. it definitely seems to have some big potential & I hope it gets more attention from more maya users.

The liquid solver for phoneix is amazing as compare to maya fluid which is really not a good liquid simulator. As on top of my head with Maya fluids you can do enormous types of effect not necessarily only volumetric effects but also various other effects like particle advection, procedural textural effects, Volumetric shading, etc etc & you can manipulate per voxel level through scripting. It can also be used as fields or driving force for nucleus & other objects. The possibilities are unlimited & I am hoping in the upcoming version of next maya it gonna get more features ( like sparse volume data set, good wavelet noise advection , better fluid cache etc ) to compete with other fluid solve in the market especially with viewport 2 features.

It would make more sense to me to compare Phoneix FD with Fume fx. Fume fx is much more advanced & production proven fluid solver. The results of Fume are very popular but somehow I get a feeling that both of these plugins are really well integrated in Max than in Maya. They are still new to Maya environment & are gradually adapting with the maya's architecture when it comes to compatibility , performance , accuracy & reliability. In my personal opinion Fume has lot more to offer when it comes to pure Volumetric effect but Phoneix FD is multi purpose Fluid solver. Recently I have seen some amazing water simulations from the Phoneix FD developer. It gonna be a tough competition in next maya release like Phoneix vs Fume vs Maya fluid vs Bifrost .

Krakatoa MY - seems like a great particle renderer, but how do you simulate millions of particles in Maya ? :

You can simulate millions of particles in maya but it would be terribly slow..What Krakatoa does is it creates multi caches of your particle sim. so if you simulate 50,000 particles in maya & then what kraktoa does is it will run your sim couple of times with different seed positions of your particles depending on the number of cache you specify & then it populates its own particle points which can go upto millions. Its pretty fast & good with self shadowing. you can render it as volumes also but it slows down if you have too many holdouts or cutouts in your scene.
Haven't used Fury in production but when I tried it out first for a testing sake..i was really impressed by its performance but the options with fury is bit limited. have check with demo will see the differences.

I am not a right person to comment something on Naiad.

Hope this helps !


Last edited by viki164 : 01 January 2014 at 06:56 AM.
  01 January 2014
In short, while I consider maya fluids very powerfull, they do take time to do things, while other plugins have better out of the box look, simple results can be achived way faster.
You should have them all, they all have good sides and bad.
Just my 2 dinars.
As particles are concerned, krakatoa is incredible, but it's not there yet inside maya, but getting there.
Naiad is live and well, I guess...

"No Bucks, NO Buck Rogers!"

VFX rule no. 387
# Just redo it!

  01 January 2014
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