Substance 3D Painter version 8.1.0 is here! The latest version of Painter continues the app’s focus on improving product design workflows with the Substance 3D ecosystem, with the introduction of ICC support and physical size scaling for assets, as well as a range of other new features and content. Let’s delve into the details.

ICC Support

This feature provides support for ICC profiles natively within Painter, ensuring that colors display correctly in the viewport – we have, in fact, implemented the same technology present in Illustrator and Photoshop. This update cements Painter’s role as component of a larger workflow, carrying out consistent color transforms and image display across applications which are compatible with ICC . Color consistency will improve the quality of designs; smooth integration with other Substance 3D and third-party apps will allow designers to explore their graphic designs with confidence in Painter.

Physical Size

Physical Size

Painter now takes into consideration real physical size information embedded in SBSAR files imported from Designer, Sampler, or Substance 3D Assets. This allows you to improve your texturing efficiency and fidelity by directly autoscaling your materials based on the physical size of your mesh in Painter. We’ve also added a grid to the viewport features, allowing you to control and adjust the scale of your material with absolute precision.

What does this mean, in real terms? If, for instance, you need a pattern to recur every two centimeters, at a real-world scale, you can ensure it does precisely that. Or if you’re working with multiple materials on a single mesh – two different fabrics on an armchair, say – these materials will automatically scale to their real-world size by default, providing overall consistency.

New Bakers

New Bakers

New bakers have been added for height, bent normal, and opacity maps. This extends the range of texturing possibilities available in Painter, bringing it more closely into line with the level of flexibility provided by Designer. The effect of this is that texturing is easier, as the app can leverage the new bake to drive layer stack texturing, as well as quicker, because there is no longer any need to pass through another app to bake any missing information. The bent normal baker in particular assures improved visual accuracy in Painter’s viewport.

Bent normals improve the occlusion and reduce light-leakage when computing the diffuse shading helping ground object better than before.

The specific advantages here are numerous. The opacity baker can be used to bake holes, an especially useful feature for scans and tiling materials. The height baker can deform tessellated low-poly meshes. And the bent normal baker can be used with the new shader feature to improve the fidelity of shading and lighting, in the viewport as well as in game engines.

Bent normals improve self-shadowing on metallic surface and reduce light-leakage with specular reflections.

Other New Features

Other New Features

Version 8.1.0 contains a range of other new features too, such as:

New content: 20 new grunge maps from external artist Emiel Sleeger.

Painter also includes 3 completely new 3D noises, and updates its 4 existing 3D noises with improved parameters and presets. Overall, more than 100 new presets have been added to Painter’s collection of 3D noises, so that users can more easily see the vast range of possibilities available.

Improvements to the color eye dropper: It’s now easier to preview selected colors, as the eyedropper includes a preview circle to more clearly show the color beneath your cursor. Using a shortcut (Shift), it’s simple to toggle between the color of the specific channel and the onscreen pixel.

The material picker has similarly improved, previewing any selected material. It also now respects the current channel visibility – for instance, if the only active layer of a material is its metal channel, this is the only information that the picker will select.

The color picker has also received a UX improvement, to ensure consistency with Substance 3D Sampler. It’s no longer necessary to hold down left-click throughout this process.

An update to the auto UV unwrapping feature, with improved segmentation for organic meshes: Automatic UV unwrapping now provides more natural segmentation. Consider the example of the unicorn mesh below – first, the UV unwrapping carried out by the previous version of Painter:

With this update, Painter now uses the same unwrapping algorithms as Modeler; Painter therefore auto-UV unwraps meshes in a way more closely resembling the type of unwrapping an artist might carry out manually. Below, the same mesh has been auto-UV unwrapped by version 8.1.0 of Painter – notably, the unicorn’s limbs are now separate islands.

This release of Substance 3D Painter is available right now. For further information, please see the app’s documentation. And remember to show us the awesome artwork you create!

Banner artwork created by Anthony Salvi; graphic design used created by Antikwar1, and provided by the Adobe Stock asset library.