Side Effects Software has today released Houdini 12, the latest incarnation of its popular 3D animation and visual effects software. Most user had seen Houdini 12 at its Siggraph preview or since, but now users can evaluate the impressive speed improvement claims at the heart of this major release. If v12 lives up to its promises it will make a host of 3D solutions with Houdini vastly faster.

Some of the new feature additions are Bullet solver integration, Pyro FX 2, faster more accurate FLIP fluids, production-ready cloth, GPU-accelerated sims and an Alembic exporter.

The final image. (click for larger)



With a viewport now based on OpenGL 3.2, the release also includes improvements to Houdini’s Mantra renderer, which recently garnered a Sci-Tech Oscar in relation to the integration of micro-voxels. Mantra now enables physically-based rendering for volumes such as smoke and fire. Side Effects says Mantra includes a 300 times speed improvement when instancing to points.

Below, watch an overview of Houdini 12:

Price-wise, the release is available as 'Houdini Escape' starting at $1,995 and Houdini Master starting from $6,695. There is also a free Apprentice Edition.

For more in-depth information, images and video of Houdini 12's features, check out


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