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What's new?

Whether you’re new to NUKE, an experienced user or pipeline developer, you’ll find a host of features, functionality and performance improvements to keep you happy.

Giving artists and developers complete creative control, cutting-edge compositing toolsets and more extensive customization options, NUKE 8’s broad range feature updates make it the perfect tool to get the job done on projects big or small.

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Watch the NUKE 8 digital event 

NUKE 8 overview videos

New features

NUKE & NUKEX 8 is bursting with new features in addition to a broad range of feature updates, including:

Open Splines *New for NUKE 8.0v5*

The new Open Splines feature in NUKE gives greater control for roto work on fine elements such as wire and hair by allowing users to draw out a single line curve and change the width and feathering along it on a per-point basis.

In-viewer text compose, edit and animate

The new Text node in NUKE 8 allows artists to enter text directly into the viewer and edit, modify or animate on a per-character basis, with all of the standard word processing and editing features you would expect, such as block selection, copy, cut and paste.  To enter or select text it’s as simple as clicking anywhere in the viewer and starting to type or dragging to select.  

NUKE 8’s new virtual slider knob gives artists easy and detailed control over adjustments with a simple click and drag solution in the number field.

Powerful timeline viewing

NUKE 8’s Dope Sheet has been greatly enhanced and allows artists to see and move keys around in time with the results and each property of the node accurately displayed in context inside of the dope sheet. This new viewing capability makes working in animation or with any scripts that involve time manipulation much more simple. The Dope Sheet also lets artists connect the viewer to different parts of the node graph, see the keys update automatically and see multiple paths through the viewer, to show how key frames are transformed along each path. In addition NUKE 8’s Dope Sheet provides an enhanced view of shots and frame ranges; the Read node and all Time nodes appear as bars shown in the time context of the viewer and can be dragged and resized intuitively, whilst automatically adjusting effected key frame positions. 

Artist-friendly color controls

The intuitive in-panel color wheel in NUKE 8 updates the existing color knobs with a new drop down panel making it easier and faster to select and change a color. The drop down panel in the color knob contains a color wheel, number entry knobs and horizontal sliders for control over color channels, fine tune buttons, luminance and temperature and vertical sliders. The color wheel itself controls hue, saturation and value and offers artists an automatic precision mode or an optional absolute mode for finer control, as well as a hue slider around the rim of the wheel for any hue changes needed whilst saturation stays fixed.

A new Pixel Analyzer in NUKE 8 gives artists easy access to a wide variety of image color values through intuitive in-viewer scrubbing or region box selection tools. Sampling multiple pixels from a specific channel layer, the Pixel Analyzer allows artists to clearly see live variants between images and elements, useful when color correcting.

Scopes are a new addition to NUKE 8 designed to give artists access to detailed levels of color data on images displayed in the viewer. Scopes provide plotted information on tonal and hue values within each channel and help artists in determining whether an image is under or over saturated, what the contrast is, and whether there is any color imbalance. They also give artists access to a display mode where channels can be analyzed in greater detail and whether to display luminance. 

Enhanced viewer rendering results

NUKE 8’s new Full Frame viewer mode ensures the full frame of the viewer is always processed when rendering, regardless of zoom level, and allows artists to playback and zoom in/out without the viewer recalculating any newly exposed scanlines.  

Intelligent in-application help

NUKE 8 comes pre-packed with a new intelligent in-context help system to complement the existing node-specific in-application tooltips. This easy to use interactive online HTML help loads your default browser directly from within NUKE and includes all information currently found in NUKE’s PDF Getting Started Guide, User Guide and Reference Guide, as well as video tutorials and example .nk scripts that open in your existing session.

Advanced 3D controls

The new Viewer Capture functionality in NUKE 8 lets artists create a flipbook of the images from the viewer to quickly and easily check shots, for example the animation of a 3D scene, in real-time without having to do a full scanline render. Viewer capture flipbooks exactly what’s in the viewer, including the 3D and 2D scene with handles overlaid, transformation overlays and wipes and can even optionally save this data as a jpeg sequence as well. 

A new Edit Geo node in NUKE 8 allows artists to modify the vertices or faces of native NUKE geometry, or any geometry read in through a Read Geo node, including: Alembic, OBJ, FBX. Giving artists greater control over 3D elements, the Edit Geo node can be used to alter the position of objects making it easy to tweak geometry for projections, fixes and cleanups all inside of NUKE.

NUKE 8’s new Wireframe Shader node lets artists apply wireframes to a variety of different geometry types, giving them access to a range of additional effects and enhanced control over projection alignment. Whether geometry is a full solid input black, transparent, requires an overlay, needs multiplying, or diffuse shading, the Wireframe Shader node gives artists complete flexibility, and also allows adjustment of line size and color.  

NUKE 8 also includes new Wireframe Render option on the render mode knob of all 3D geometry nodes that gives added choice to artists when rendering objects or full scenes. 


Powerful Deep Compositing

NUKE 8 adds Deep output to the Scanline renderer enabling artists to output Deep images from NUKE's native 3D environment and combine these with existing deep images and enhance the deep compositing workflow.

Speed and performance enhancements

OpenEXR 2.0 adds multi-part image read and write support to NUKE 8.  With these capabilities artists can store their views and layers in separate subfiles to significantly increase speed when only working on a few layers at a time. When writing out EXR files, new interleave options let artists control how data, such as: channels, layers and views, are stored in each part of the EXR file. 

NUKE 8 also supports the recently released Alembic 1.5, Ogawa release, which brings with it improvements in write, read, and especially multi-threaded read performance.

New to NUKE with the latest release is the inclusion of NUKEX’s GPU acceleration, meaning that from NUKE 8 onwards which ever NUKE product you work with you can harness the power of the GPU and speed up interactive processing when using tools such as MotionBlur, Kronos, VectorGenerator, Convolve and ZDefocus.

Planar Rendering Framework

NUKE 8 gives developers of C++ plugins the ability to output planar data in a more flexible way thanks to new Planar Rendering Framework. The new breed of Planarlop removes the need for plugin developers to implement their own caching scheme, and allows them to simply implement the Render Stripe call and let NUKE takes care of the buffer management. The output plane can also be striped, or not, according to developer preference.

Python Import NUKE

NUKE 8 adds the new Import NUKE function that allows developers to use NUKE as a module in any Python interpreter. Straight from set up, import NUKE ensures the NUKE Script Editor’s functions and commands are available in any chosen interpreter.

Blink Script node

The Blink Script node new to NUKE 8, lets developers write their own image processing operations inside of NUKE using the Blink Framework. Getting the best possible performance from a team’s hardware, the Blink Framework ensure code can be written once and then run fully optimized on a variety of devices. The Blink Script node can translate image processing code into standard x86 or SIMD accelerated code to run on the CPU, or OpenCL to run on the GPU.

New to NUKE 8 is an API that allows C++ plug-in developers to harness the Foundry's Blink technology. Image processing algorithms can now be implemented once and deployed on CPU and GPU devices. The API provides greater flexibility and exposes features of the Blink technology that are not available in the Blink Script Node. This results in the ability to create faster and more complex effects.

New features exclusively for NUKEX

Advanced color matching

The new Match Grade node in NUKEX 8 takes a significant step forward from the previous color matching solution handled by the FURNACE plugin set and offers even greater speed and accuracy. The Match Grade node automatically modifies the color histogram of an image to match a reference and makes grading simple and fast. The node can be used in a number of scenarios: to extract a baked in grade and match it to the target image when frames are the same across both images, match grades between completely different shots or match elements between source and target shots such as grass areas and face regions within shots. 

The next generation of Camera Tracking

NUKEX’s Camera Tracker has been completely remodeled to include the projection solver and a new Camera Calibrator. These updates let artists track and solve cameras from reference stills and can be used to assist with set or object modeling. A new locator system has also been added, which lets artists place locators throughout a shot and create a manual solve when needed, and overall workflow has been enhanced to give smoother camera tracks and cleaner point clouds. 

Powerful Model Building

NUKEX’s Model Builder has been updated to give artists the power to create UV’s within NUKE which is useful when adding new 3D elements to existing clips. Designed to make set extension work easy, these improvements allow artists to switch into a new UV mode and take control of UV creation for objects created within the Model Builder. Artists can now create seams, or ‘unwrap marks’, on their model, use the UV window to refine unwrapped UV’s live and in context, and with the transform jack move, rotate and scale UV’s all inside of NUKEX.  

The new Apply Material Filter options help to streamline 3D texture application on objects inside of NUKE. Artists can now choose to add textures to subsets of a model without needing to separate geometry into unique nodes. 

Particle simulation caching

The Particle Cache node in NUKE 8 speeds up rendering times by letting artist save a particle system’s simulation to file and then read it back in different sessions or on different machines at will, without the need to recalculate.

In case you missed it the first time

Take a look at our Sneak Peek videos, showing teaser clips of the features we're most proud of in NUKE 8.

Learn NUKE 8 with our tutorials