Blender 4.0 released
Blender Foundation, in collaboration with its online developers community, has recently released Blender 4.0, marking a significant update to the popular 3D creation suite. This version introduces numerous enhancements focusing on rendering, tool creation, and overall user experience, underlining Blender’s commitment to “Freedom to Create.”
A highlight of Blender 4.0 is the revamped Principled BSDF, which is more energy-conserving, efficient, and flexible. It includes a new coat layer for simulating effects like emissive textures behind glass and a sheen layer employing a microfiber shading model, expanding its utility beyond traditional applications like fuzzy cloth.
Color management sees a major advancement with the introduction of the AgX view transform, providing improved handling of over-exposed areas and color saturation, especially evident in the rendering of metallic and highly saturated objects.
Texture capabilities are also enhanced, with the Voronoi Texture node now supporting fractal noise for unlimited procedural detail. This node has been equipped with new inputs such as Detail, Roughness, and Lacunarity, and a Normalize property for better output control.
Blender 4.0 also introduces Light Linking in the Cycles rendering engine, allowing lights or emissive objects to affect specific scene elements. This feature provides greater control over lighting and shadow effects in complex scenes.
Geometry Nodes receive a significant upgrade with the implementation of Node Tools. These tools facilitate the creation and customization of Blender tools without requiring Python knowledge, expanding creative possibilities and ease of use.
Modeling improvements include enhanced snapping options and user interface upgrades. New snap options and dynamic cursor changes make the process more intuitive, while the introduction of Snap Base allows for more precise object transformations.
Search functionality within Blender has been improved, with instant search capabilities in all Add menus, enhancing workflow efficiency.
Blender 4.0 aligns with the VFX Reference Platform 2023, ensuring compatibility with studio pipelines. This version also includes updates to its animation and rigging modules, with new features and improvements reflecting the ongoing “Animation 2025 project.”
In addition to these highlights, Blender 4.0 offers a myriad of other enhancements across its feature set, including updates to EEVEE, the viewport, import/export functions, text editor, Python API, and the Sequencer.
Following this significant release, a minor update, Blender 4.0.1, was issued on November 17th to address critical issues, with updating highly recommended.
Find out more on the Blender website.