Potentially BIG News for Cycles4D


I am really disappointed that cycles 4D is no longer available as a separate product. If you need all their tools, I’m sure insidiums products are really neat (although their fluid plug-in now no longer supports viewport visualization in s24 since maxon moved to direct x on windows and metal on mac).

Paying subscription for Cinema 4D is one thing, paying that enormous subscription- $992- for the insidium group subscription is another.


The C4D eco system has got very expensive if you’re a hobbyist and these software subscriptions soon add up if your business is dealing with the fallout of covid, some sectors are still very depressed and some companies have discovered they can get away with paying a lot less for 3d work.

I briefly looked at the ‘Fused’ thing and it was as clear as mud, I think XP is the only plugin which has a perpetual element. It seems an odd thing to do for a ‘fused’ package.

I find it crazy that the first thing someone has to do after buying or renting C4D is have to shell out for a modern particle system and a production quality renderer. If Maxon was doing its job there should be no need for Insydium. I used XP since v2.0 and thought it would be a stop-gap until a native particle system arrived but TBH I never used much of the the features beyond 2.5. Latter updates have a lot of features that make pretty demos but in production I never found I needed much more than an emitter, a few effectors and the odd collider. Xplosia is absolutely dreadful and the liquid sims are limited by C4D’s awful cache playback and found them impossible to use in production.

Perhaps there has been a drop off in yearly upgrades which has pushed Insydium into offering everything as a job lot to generate more interest? Maybe Maxon has finally managed to squirt out a native particle system in the next release and this prompted the move to ‘Fused’ to give the impression of greater value for XP?

If you’re only interested in Cycles4D you’re completely hosed though. As good as Cycles-X is (and it is really very good) I wouldn’t pay for the whole Fused package just to get a renderer.


Yeah, it’s really a shame :frowning:
To me this all would make the most sense, if Insydium knew that R25 will include a decend rendering option, or as you said, a particle system. Particle system is not unrealistic, maybe part of the geometry nodes? But inclusion of redshift makes even more sense to me. The renderer is the biggest weakness at the moment, and they own a capable one. Sure, Redshift just went sub only, but this doesn’t change to much regarding that possibility. They would have to transform licenses/subscriptions somehow, and the less perpetuals are out there, the easier would this move be.


I think a node based particle system based on the Scene Nodes system is the most likely thing. A particle system is just a distribution system that you move with forces so I can see this coming sooner rather than later. It wouldn’t need such a system to be 1:1 feature complete with XParticles to be useful for 95% of users so even in an early version state it could hit XP’s market.

One clear advantage a native particle system would have would be running on the new scene graph which should mean it could handle vastly higher particle numbers. As an FYI Blender’s node based particle system which was paused so they could concentrate on Geometry Nodes was around 6x faster than XP on my machine. I could generate 6x the particles for the same frame rate it was almost as fast as Houdini’s particle system which is the performance benchmark.

So, if Maxon has their own new particle system ready expect them to crow about the performance, it should be able to cope with vastly greater numbers of particles than XP which could be a big selling point or a big enough reason for people not to continue with their XP subscription.

Late July/Early August is normally when the latest C4D version is announced so maybe not long to wait?


Yeah, typically it is presented at SIGGRAPH, which starts at august 9th this year.

And yes, new particle system in R25 would also be my bet.


Just Blend it with Cinema 4D and enjoy.


For those interested in a possible Mac Cycles4d return Apple has committed some serious resources to getting CyclesX running on Metal and they are looking to get into the hands of users for Blender 3.1 so Q1 2022 at the earliest.

It’ll be interesting to see how Metal compares to CUDA/Optix and AMD’s HIP early next year. Intel are alleged to be working on their CyclesX GPU support which might mean by mid 2022 CyclesX will be compatible with all CPU and GPU hardware across all platforms. Will the same be said for Redshift?

Insydium could clean up the C4D 3rd party rendering space next year.


According to CG Channel, the first fully metal-native Cycles renderer will be in Blender 3.1 next year. I still don’t enjoy using Blender as much as I do using C4D, but as a value proposition, R25 (and the £500+ annual subscription) is bloody awful. If S26 doesn’t redress the balance, I’ll revert to my R20 perpetual and invest my money in Blender instead.


I didn’t enjoy using Houdini as much as C4D in the early days but at some point along your journey this changes and using C4D feels odd. Same with Blender but once I built up a mental map of where to find everything in the Properties Panel I find myself being more productive than I was in C4D. The viewport performance of Blender combined with the speed of CyclesX means I can get work turned around so much quicker. I’ve actually rendered out work using Alpha Blender it’s been that stable.

Now that Apple is a Patron of the development fund and their developer has full commit rights you can expect Apple to use Blender to hail the performance of Metal in their Mac Pros when they arrive. It’s a virtual guarantee. I may be an ex-Mac user but only a fool would ignore the clout the Apple endorsement brings and can see a whole new userbase coming to Blender. There is a Blender Mac userbase albeit a small one but if Apple can contribute a Metal viewport and Cycles backend I can only see this part of the community growing significantly.

Only Open Source Software can combat the anti-consumer greed mentality of rental software licenses in the long term. Support the development fund if you can but if you can’t get involved with making Blender better. I could be wrong but I’m sure I’ve seen a former Maxon developer on the devtalk forum actively suggesting feature improvements. As I say, I could be wrong and it’s just a similar name. But the point stands, if there’s something you don’t like suggest an improvement either on devtalk or blender.community.

FOSS is the focal point for the wider software using community to push back against corporate greed that wants to take as much and give as little back it can. The F in FOSS is ‘Freedom’. You are free from some disproportionately well paid suit sat in an ivory tower telling you how much you must spend and when.


I just skimmed through the Houdini 19 reveal video – it’s 105 minutes long! My god the technology is amazing.

And what did we get for R25? About five minutes on a new UI and ‘Capsules’. I couldn’t be more disappointed with Maxon right now if I tried. And, frankly, more worried about C4D’s future, or lack of it.


Yes, the H19 roll out was mighty impressive, it’s almost like SideFX gives a crap about their software. It’s obvious how much pride they have for the software and keen to give the hard work of their developers a day in the limelight. Nothing more to say than, impressive.

When I first bought Houdini I had a registration issue and couldn’t get my license to work so I sent off a rather terse message on their support form thinking it was just a roboform and I would just get a roboreply then nothing like you know who. Within a couple of hours I got an extremely apologetic email and a message that they had fixed the issue their end. They made it clear how important my business and experience was and at the time I was only buying an Indie version for learning. Every dealing I’ve ever had with SideFX feels like you’ve just walked into your local cornershop, you’re not just a number but a valued customer and they can’t be more helpful. I hope they never change!

Maxon is making money hand over fist and at first glance things could look very rosy, C4D’s short to mid-term future is not in doubt, what is in doubt is how quickly it’ll get developed and moved over to the new Neutron (?) scenegraph system. The Scene Nodes system doesn’t appear to have captured the hearts and minds of the general C4D userbase so they need to get the mograph tools over very quickly. I see very few examples of Scene Nodes usage and from what I see the performance really isn’t all that to shout about, a bit of a disappointment if I’m honest.

6 years ago I predicted it would take 6 years for Maxon to sort out the object management bottleneck, the C4DCafe faithful came down on me like a ton of bricks. As it turns out I was wide of the mark and underestimated how glacial C4D development would be, it could be another 6 years at this rate. We might be closer to 2030 before the old C4D object management system is fully retired. If R25 is going to be a typical update who could disagree with my prognosis?

If anyone at Maxon think they can do doggie paddle while everyone around them is doing freestyle in the race they are going to have a shock soon. The competition from Houdini for the highend mograph is a losing battle and come 2022 you will see a plethora of Blender mograph start to take a large chunk of what’s left of the mograph mindshare. Once the mindshare leaves it rarely comes back, ask Newtek.

It would have been genuinely unthinkable that C4D would ever be knocked off its perch as the de facto standard for Mograph but I really do think there is about to be a huge change in the industry. When it happens absolutely no one can say Maxon weren’t warned.


Quite a big day for Cycles and future Cycles4d enthusiasts.

The E-Cycles scrambling distance/micro-jittering routines have been added to CyclesX. These are not so much optimisations rather than a clever trade-off between absolute image fidelity and speed which many of us are more than happy to accept.

The rendering speed improvements are scene dependent but significant nevertheless. On my production scenes CyclesX is already way faster than Redshift on my machine especially with SSS materials and DOF etc and an additional 20-30% speed boost will be gratefully received.

Here’s the original paper on the subject for those interested in the theory.

It’s almost time for Nodevember. Follow @NodevemberIO and #Nodevember on Twitter for some crazy Cycles Shader creations. If you have Cycles4D maybe give the examples a whirl.


Out of interest, what GPU are you using for Cycles? Any idea how it’d run on a 1070?


I’m running 2x 1080TI. Cycles will run absolutely fine on a 1070.

To give you an idea of performance I’ve just finished a science illustration with just under 7 Million on screen polys rendered at 4k in full GI, DOF, noise free in 30 secs. Your 1070 will probably render the same scene in circa 60 secs I’d guess.

CyclesX runs best on nVidia 3000 series GPUs not just because of the RT cores but because it can make use of Ampere’s enormous shader count. Early lab testing indications are that it runs incredibly well on AMD’s new GPUs but they won’t be supported until early next year.

I’m keeping this thread alive because I think many have overlooked Cycles4D because, to be completely fair, it wasn’t the fastest GPU renderer on the block a while ago. This really has changed dramatically with the introduction of CyclesX, it feels like a completely new renderer.

If/when Insydium deliver Cycles4D based on CyclesX I think people will be genuinely surprised by its performance not to mention it should also support nVidia, AMD and Apple GPU hardware in the future which is super important to the mixed userbase which C4D attracts.


Good stuff. I gave up on Cycles prior to getting stuck into RS but I suspect it’s improved massively in the last 4 years. Probably worth adding “re-learn Blender” to my ever-growing training pile as quite frankly I’m not a fan of Insydium’s maintenance.


It’s a real shame Insydium felt the need to go down the Subs route and lumped Cycles4d in their Fused package. I’m pretty sure plenty of people would’ve been interested in Cycles4d alone. Seems short sighted to me.

Anyway, with USD and Alembic you can easily use Blender as a glorified render engine which is what I do.

If you need any steers just ask.


I’m going to keep banging on about Cycles because, frankly, it’s the best render engine for my needs and I think many of you freelancers will feel the same when you manage to try it.

Currently the only way to use Cycles in C4D is with Insydium’s Cycles4D Bridge but that could be about to change. The nVidia developer Patrick Mours has recently committed the first patch of a Cycles Hydra Render delegate. To cut a long story short this means any DCC that supports Hydra Render delegates will have a drop in Cycles support.

Currently Houdini supports Hydra render delegates and any 3D DCC which supports the USD format should easily be able to support Hydra render delegates. Any premium 3D DCC worth its salt will eventually support Hydra as it’s an easy way for renderer developers to write the one renderer and have it run on any DCC which supports it. It’s surely only a matter of time before C4D supports Hydra render delegates.

Intel developers have announced they’ve been working hard to bring support for their new line of GPUs to Blender with their OneAPI which could make Blender 3.2 (more likely 3.3) so all major GPU manufacturers will be natively supported with Cycles nVidia Optix, CUDA, AMD HiP, Intel OneAPI and Apple Metal.

Intel also announced that they intend to bring machine learning into 3D rendering with their Open Path Guiding Library which will eventually work on all CPUs and GPUs not just Intel’s. From what I understand it uses machine learning to accelerate rendering by effectively increasing the number of samples or rays so a low sample scene will render with a similar quality to a scene with many times the samples. I hope ML will save us from 600W GPUs!

As OpenPGL is open source you can bet this will end up in other renderers too in time. Everyone will eventually benefit from Intel’s development involvement with Blender.

Sooner or later Cycles4D will be updated (it may have already I haven’t checked) to support CyclesX or Maxon will bring support for Hydra render delegates so C4D users will have two ways to enjoy an extremely powerful and lightning fast renderer with huge industry backing.


Manifold next event estimation, a type of caustics calculation has been added to Cycles. This was coded by Facebook engineers one of which is formerly of Pixar.

The first iteration of Lightgroups has been added. A long requested feature by studios.

Cycles4D users are going to get a huge update one of these days.