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Luxology introduces modo 601

Luxology introduces modo 601 – the most significant update in the product’s history


Luxology LLC, this week announced the immediate availability of modo 601, a landmark release of its award-winning, artist-friendly 3D content creation software. modo 601 includes character animation, built-in dynamics, volumetric rendering, and enhanced retopology modeling tools along with a host of other new features.

modo 601 is now a full pipeline solution for professionals working in media and entertainment, engineering and architectural design visualization.

01 - A rendered image from Luxology's new modo 601.

modo 601

“modo 601 is our most significant release ever,” said Brad Peebler, president and co-founder of Luxology. “With new feature and workflow enhancements, modo now offers an end-to-end production solution that is both powerful and highly useable by artists and designers.”

02 - modo 601 has new character animation capabilities with full body rigging support.

03 - modo 601 also has available new CAD Loaders which enable the support of Parasolid-based CAD formats.

modo 601 features a number of compelling summarized below:

  • Character Animation – modo offers a complete character animation functionality, from easy to use posing tools to fully rigged characters with inverse kinematics solver support and layered deformers
  • Dynamics – modo supports rigid and soft body dynamics, based on version 2.97 of the Bullet Physics engine. These are now standard with modo 601 and provide realistic simulations of mechanical and organic motion
  • Retopology Modeling – Focused on tools and a new dedicated retopology modeling layout that simplify the creation of clean models on top of imported geometry
  • Rendering and Shading – New photorealistic rendering capabilities include volumentric rendering, render booleans, hair and skin shaders, and rounded edge control for hard surface models.
  • 3D Paint – modo features a multi-purpose paint system for vertex maps and meshes
  • Rendering Workflow – The Preview Renderer can now be used for final image production as it will progressively render an image to the desired resolution at full quality. A comprehensive render pass system, plus new interactive image processing and comparison tools, speed image refinement.
  • Modeling – modo’s Pixar Subdivision surface modeling now includes the ability to crease individual vertices and control display resolution while rendering at full quality

“Throughout my 18 years in the 3D business, I’ve never seen a 3D software application become so powerful, so fast,” said Dan Ablan, President, AGA Digital Studios, Inc., “The additions to modo 601 are mind blowing, and the render boolean function, blobs, and new deformer tools are absolutely invaluable.”

Architosh Analysis

We were one of the first publications to dig into modo in the early days (see for instance our interview with Brad Peebler from 2006 talking about modo 202) and we’d have to agree with Mr. Ablan above. We are astonished at how quickly modo has grown up and become a full-fledged member of what we might call the “Elite  4” (Maya, C4D, Lightwave, Softimage) making modo really the 5th member of that high-end 3D professional app group, along with 3ds Max and Houdini as well.

So what distinguishes modo from some of the others? Well, for starters, modo from the beginning supported the Mac and Windows simultaneously with more or less full parity. Maya for instance was ported to the Mac and Softimage to this day still has no Mac version.

Another distinguishing feature is modo’s UI. Their award-winning app was lauded by Apple for instance for its beautiful but powerful user interface. While many of the elites mentioned above have improved their UIs in recent years modo’s was superb from the beginning.

What is impressive about modo 601 today is its rendering technology. The boolean rendering features are incredibly powerful. The new and updated character tools really advance modo as a full-fledged studio production tool and good citizen within an existing pipeline. And like Maxon Luxology has done a good job of reaching out to CAD companies to tie-in modo as a CAD visualization tool of choice.

Pricing and Availability

modo 601 is available now and is 1,195.USD new or 495.USD for existing modo users who want to upgrade. Exising modo users can upgrade for only 395.USD for the next two weeks only as a special promo. And also for a limited time, a cross-grade is available for 795.USD for users of Maya, 3ds Max, Softimage, Houdini, CINEMA 4D and LightWave 3D.

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