SoftImage XSI 5 Announced


Introducing SOFTIMAGE|XSI v.5.0, the digital character software designed with a gigapolygon core to handle ten times the detail for next-generation productions and take full advantage of 64-bit platforms.

Acclaimed for its ease of use, XSI v5.0 introduces a comprehensive set of migration tools for Maya users. New interface layouts and navigation modes let artists transfer their existing skills and muscle memory to XSI, and migrate in days, not weeks.

Going far beyond normal maps, XSI v.5.0 introduces “Ultimapper” for film-quality effect maps with a single-click workflow. Ultimapper generates normal, ambient occlusion, difference, parallax, light, and albedo maps from arbitrarily complex models using the full power and cinematic quality of mental ray rendering.

A core component at the heart of Avid Computer Graphics solutions, XSI v.5.0 allows 3-D art teams to achieve richer results more quickly. Combined with Alienbrain® Studio, the scalable asset management system and powerful Avid editing and compositing workstations, the flexibility of Avid Computer Graphics solutions make it easier and more affordable to bring order to complicated creative workflows.


SoftImage also presented as a technology preview at SIGGRAPH 2005, Face Robot™ provides artists with the tools to produce lifelike facial animation and digital acting with emotion and depth.

SOFTIMAGE®|FACE ROBOT™ allows 3-D artists to achieve realistic, lifelike facial animation for high-end film, post and games projects. Based on extensive anatomical research, Face Robot™ uses a groundbreaking new computer model of the soft tissue of the face to mimic the full range of human emotion. Designed with input from leading animation experts, Face Robot™ gives artists an intuitive way to interact with their characters while providing control over details like wrinkles, frowns, flaring nostrils and bulging neck muscles.

Face Robot™ supports both keyframe animation and motion capture, the primary techniques used for digital acting today. The soft tissue model at the core of the Face Robot™ technology removes the need to manually create dozens or even hundreds of 3-D shapes for different facial expressions and allows animators to work with an optimal number of control points. Keyframe animators can gain very direct, intuitive access to facial expressions, while motion capture animators can work with fewer markers to reduce setup and cleanup time.

With dedicated facial animation technology, Softimage enters a new category that complements the advanced SOFTIMAGE®|XSI® animation system. Face Robot™ removes the barriers to believable digital acting, allowing the 3-D community to fulfill their creative imagination.

more information and demo videos


sweeet candy! :slight_smile:

also worth noting the recent announcments of max 8 and maya 7.

Rock on! ;)

This image does my head in too! hehe! :slight_smile:


Wow, sounds great. The only hard thing about going from maya to xsi is the alt = s.


This one looks like the strongest release out of the ones announced at this year’s Siggraph so far to me. That’s four out of the big five 3D apps down, one left to go. Where’s Maxon? :slight_smile: Bet they’re cooking something nice as well.


I’m sure Maxon always the best. :slight_smile:


I wonder why the videos have been taken down? Maybe not quite polished enough? The facial animation was well sweet but the neck muscles were a bit dodgy, didn’t quite finish watching them all but hey I can’t wait for the new vids to go up…


The QWERTY and alt feature is awesome! Maybe i can finally get a grip on XSI without hitting the wrong buttons. :stuck_out_tongue:

Wonder when a “PLE” version of 5 will be out…


woo hoo, I’ve been clicking the Softimage website for days now !!!
I can finally read whats new.


This update is mainly focused on getting Maya people to use XSI. The complete interface can be transformed into Maya. Understandable update, but for people already using XSI this update seems a bit lame… Sure there are some improvements like the new bezier curve editting tool (stolen from Max)… And the improved rigidbody system… It’s an OK update, but I realy hoped they integrated a facialrig or muscle system into it… well, maybe version 6


I take it you haven’t seen the new GATOR feature, I wouldn’t exactly call that lame! :slight_smile:


Did I miss something?

Gigapolygon Core
Allows for massive scenes and objects to be loaded, managed and rendered. The gigapolygon core means when you can load it into XSI - you can render it.

Never start from scratch again. The all-purpose General Attribute Transfer Operator (“GATOR”) that automagically propagates all surface properties and attributes between different objects.

Shape Manager
A dedicated UI for all morph shape creation, editing and animation. Extremely fast and allows easy editing of original shapes.

Parameter Connection Editor
A powerful editor to create links between objects and parameters, making it easy to create and edit linked parameters.

Migration Tools for Maya Users
Get up and running in a matter of minutes, not hours, with new and easy-to-use migration tools.

XSI Rendering
XSI’s uses mental ray v.3.4 as its native renderer, which means you can easily produce stunning images with XSI’s rendering controls, including new Ambient Occlusion and fast Sub Surface Scattering shaders.

Pass Channels
Automatically generate standard or custom rendered channels such as specular or reflections. Easily speed up your rendering pipeline without being a TD.

Create cinematic-quality normal maps and effects maps from high-resolution models in just a few clicks.

Import Options for ZBrush
New, dedicated options to handle the most complex ZBrush geometries.

XSI Game Example & dotXSI 5.0
Example game for all developers showing how XSI easily integrates into any games pipeline.

Tools Development Environment
A TD’s dream come true. A single, unified development environment to easily create, manage and deploy all tools, plugins and workgroups.

Rigid Body Physics
Interact with thousands of collisions while simulating, with new Ageia™ NovodeX physics simulation. Incredibly fast, stable, accurate and predictable

Hair Instancing and Styling
The industry’s leading hair and fur solution. Perfectly straightforward, predictable and easy to render.

Bezier Curves
Easy curve creation, manipulation and geometry generation.

Tweak Tool
Wonderful workflow for all-in-one freeform component manipulation. Intuitive, proportional, fast and friendly - just use the “M” key.

Emboss Geometry
Emboss geometry using images for a quick alternative to displacements.

Texture Swimming
Maintain your original projection when editing geometry without suffering any texture distortion.

Keying Panel
The one place to set and edit multiple parameters to keyframe. Allows you to define, expose or key multiple parameters at once. Setting keyframes has never been easier.

Timeline Dopesheet
Cut\Copy\Paste\Merge\Scale\Ripple\Replace keys directly on the timeline, for fast and easy animation creation.

How is this a lame update?


This does look the strongest of the “big guns” updates that we’ve seen. Especially looking at the vids,

Can’t wait, and I just installed windows x64 too! YAY!


The Novodex physics library is pretty amazing, multithreaded and everything. Does the inclusion in XSI mean that XSI can take advantage of those new PPU physics accelerator chips as well? That sounds like a pretty sweet thing to have if it does work with the new physics accelerator boards.


Pffff… and max stole them from illustrator…
and 10 years ago SI3d already had bezier curves…


Lame is the last thing I would call this update! I just want some more details :wise:

A new timeline, new physics engine , a comprehensive tweak tool, a connection editor, new shape manager, zbrush import options, MR 3.4 with the new AO and fast sss shaders, all drool worthy…
I am hanging for details on the features that have me intrigued…such as gator and the emboss tool? I am dialup and alas can’t checkout the videos.

Also the new Maya navigation is fantastic news to those of us trained on Maya or Cinema4d!

Sounds like Softimage has really been listening to users…


Also the new Maya navigation is fantastic news to those of us trained on Maya or Cinema4d!

hmm i don’t get how this is so fantastic, i think you can hold the S key instead of alt and navigate ? so how hard is it to use S instead of Alt …


That’s what i call a MAJOR update!

Now XSI have everithing i miss… fantastic! Maybe it’s time to switch :slight_smile:


ok, my reply might have sounded a bit too disappointed. Maybe it was that teaser movie that raised my expectations a bit too much. It’s a cool update and compared to the competition it’s an ever cooler update. But still I was hoping for something like a hypershade-like editor (editting multiple materialnodes in 1 view!), or nodebased particlesystem. But I still love XSI!


Cut\Copy\Paste\Merge\Scale\Ripple\Replace keys directly on the timeline, for fast and easy animation creation.

Does that mean that we can see the keyframe mark on the timeline already now?