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AMD releases Mac versions of Radeon ProRender plugin for Blender & Maya

AMD this week published Mac versions of its Radeon ProRender plugins for 3D creation mainstays Blender and Maya —enabling Macs with compatible hardware to take advantage of ProRender for physics-based rendering.

Macs must be running at least macOS 10.13.3, and using hardware that supports Apple's Metal 2 graphics platform. When those are in effect, ProRender offers a scalable ray-tracing engine exploiting maximum CPU and GPU power.

The new plugins also include AMD's updated Uber Shader, with touches like better subsurface scattering for elements like skin. In Maya, "interactive" denoising attempts to strip noise while retaining detail, simultaneously lowering render times.

Several Blender upgrades have been made, among them adaptive subdivision of surfaces, more AOV options like reflections and diffuse lighting, and volumetric effects such as fog, smoke, and clouds.

The plugins are mostly of interest to graphics professionals with the iMac Pro or any recent model with a connected eGPU. Most Macs use integrated or mobile-level GPUs not suited to professional work.