Blender developers and contributors are working fast towards evolving the most magnificent open source professional 3D creation and animation application in the world.
Two and a half months from the amazing 2.66 release, comes 2.67 with many new tools that expand the abilities and possibilities of Blender greatly.
2.67 Main new features
The most amazing new thing that you will find in version 2.67 is Freestyle. Freestyle is an edge- and line-based non-photorealistic (NPR) rendering engine. It relies on mesh data and z-depth information to draw lines on selected edge types. Various line styles can be added to produce artistic (“hand drawn”, “painted”, etc.) or technical (hard line) looks as shown in the below two examples:
Freestyle rendering engine started as a stand-alone program developed in an academic research project, but is now completely integrated in the latest version of Blender.
- 3D Printing Toolbox
Blender should focus on bringing some kind of initial support for the rising technology of 3D printing and is finally delivering on this version that brings a relevant add-on bundled with the main application (but not enabled by default).
The toolbox includes functions like the ruler tool and the mesh-analysis that displays attributes such as thickness, sharp-areas and distortion. The toolbox provides convenient methods of checking the model for errors, statistics (volume, area etc) and a convenient one-click export option for common formats used with 3d printers (including VRML2).
- Refactored Paint System
The paint system in blender has been refactored to better unify the paint systems stroke management. Due to this, there are some new features for all paint modes, and some implemented specifically for texture painting.
Stencil mapping is a new texture mapping mode that works by displaying an overlay which users can place on the viewport and paint in a stencil-like way on their mesh
- Cycles Render
A Subsurface Scattering shader is now available, to create materials such as Wax, Marble or Skin. This is achieved by the different behavior of the light, that in this case penetrates the surface and bounces around internally before getting absorbed or leaving the surface at a nearby point, rather than light being reflect directly off the surface.
Among the many other small or big improvements (depending on what you do with Blender) are the following:
- Border for compositor viewer node, which restricts what is to be composited for faster previews saving you precious and in most cases huge amounts of time.
- Node Groups editing is less cluttered and more consistent with other nodes. Multiple node editor windows can be used independently. Nesting node groups is fully supported.
- The API now supports custom node types. Nodes can be defined and registered in python scripts like other UI classes. This allows the creation of entire new node systems for addons, external render engines and the like.
- New mesh modeling tools: Individual Face Inset, Poke Face and Knife Project. Faster image display in the image and movie clip editors. Better support for UTF-8 text in the text and console editors, and various improvements to other editors.
- Camera and object motion solver motion are much more accurate and faster because the Ceres library is used now for the bundle adjustment step. In addition the tripod solver is finally fixed and has become usable for longer footage.
- In addition to the new features, over 260 bugs that existed in previous releases have been fixed.
To get the latest 2.67 version of Blender, you will need to visit the download webpage and choose to get the 32 or 64 bit Linux package. No need to install anything, as binaries are included and found inside the folder that will be created after you unzip the downloaded file. Be sure to have glibc 2.11, Python 3.3 and FFmpeg installed in your system.