J Cube unveils new standalone USD editing tool MUSE
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J Cube introduces the new stand-alone USD editing tool MUSE

Wednesday, October 14, 2020 | Written by Jim Thacker

J Cube launched MUSE, an interesting new tool to open, view, and non-destructively edit USD files without the need for a DCC application.

MUSE – available as a technical preview with the Multiverse | of the company's USD Toolkit for Maya – to provide Studios with pipelines around the USD format with a fast, non-destructive way to modify USD assets.

Load, view and edit USD assets for VFX or animation work without opening your DCC software
MUSE – stands for “Multiverse | USD Standalone Editor ’- is used to load and visualize assets and compositions in USD format, e.g. B. those that were generated during the recording layout in VFX or the feature animation.

More importantly, unlike Usdview, Pixar's free USD viewer that is available as part of the standard USD toolset, USD assets can be modified and easily viewed.

J Cube describes its goal of providing a fast, non-destructive workflow for editing or creating assets that can then be used in other USD-compatible apps, including Blender, Houdini and Nvidia's Omniverse.

Edit attributes, add overrides, or write USD compositions
Editing in MUSE is currently limited to USD attributes, including editing with multiple selections. Adding references to other USD files; Writing USD overrides; and writing USD compositions with overrides.

Users can select USD prims in the viewport. In the current version, however, it is not possible to move, rotate or translate them directly.

The software uses Hydra, the native USD rendering framework, to visualize USD files, although J Cube says it will support rendering engines other than Hydra's Storm renderer in the future.

MUSE currently has "more limited display and rendering functionality" than Usdview, but can both play animations and display static elements.

Pricing and system requirements
MUSE is available for Windows and Linux. A Metal-compatible MacOS version will be available soon.

It is currently available as a free technical preview for users with Pro subscriptions to Multiverse | available USD. See this story for pricing and system requirements for the software.

In version 1.0, MUSE becomes a completely independent tool. With Multiverse | it remains free USD Pro subscriptions, but J Cube has not yet confirmed any other pricing.

For more information on MUSE, see the J Cube online FAQs

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