Sneak peek: Substance Alchemist’s IBL creation system
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Sneak Peek: The IBL creation system from Substance Alchemist

Friday, July 31, 2020 | Written by Jim Thacker

Adobe has introduced a new feature to automatically create image-based lighting (IBL) in development for a future version of Substance Alchemist, its material creation software.

The system imports sets of source photos and assembles them into HDR environments that users can customize by adjusting parameters such as temperature or even adding brand new synthetic lights.

The feature was introduced yesterday during a live stream on Adobe's 3D and augmented reality tools, the recording of which is embedded above. The Substance Chemist section begins at 00:36:10.

Convert sets of source photos into customizable HDR environments in Substance Alchemist
As with the image-to-material system introduced in Substance Alchemist 2020.2, the new IBL creation system automatically processes source photos in the software.

In this case, this means a series of photos of real environments with different exposures: the photos in the tech demo were taken with one of Richoh's 360 degree theta cameras.

A “series of filters” in Substance Alchemist then automatically assembles the images in an HDR lighting environment for the software's 3D material preview.

Users can adjust parameters such as exposure or light temperature using a series of sliders or even add new synthetic light to the HDR: a workflow similar to that in tools such as HDR Light Studio.

The demo showed a virtual neon tube attached to the ceiling of a real HDR environment.

Pricing and availability
Adobe has not confirmed whether the IBL creation system will be available in the next version of Substance Alchemist: If the company adheres to its current numbering conventions, Substance Alchemist 2020.3.

The current stable version, Substance Alchemist 2020.2, is available for 64-bit Windows 8+, CentOS 7.0 / Ubuntu 16.04+ Linux and MacOS 10.12+.

The software is only available as part of Adobe's substance subscriptions, which also provide access to Substance Painter and Substance Designer, as well as downloads from the online asset library Substance Source.

Indie subscriptions for users with sales of less than $ 100,000 / year are $ 19.90 / month or $ 219 / year. Pro subscriptions cost $ 99.90 / month or $ 999 / year.

Visit the Substance Alchemist product website

Tags: Adobe, HDR, HDR environment, HDR Light Studio, IBL, IBL creation, image-based lighting, new functions, release date, sneak peek, Substance Alchemist 2.3, Substance Alchemist 2020.3, Substance Alchemsist, synthetic HDR, system requirements, video

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