Pixologic has released ZBrushCore 2018, the latest version of its cut-down edition of ZBrush targeted at hobbyists, students, 3D printing enthusiasts and illustrators.
The first major update to ZBrushCore since its launch, the release adds some of ZBrush’s VDM brushes and Gizmo3D deformers, a cut-down version of its Decimation Master plugin, and the full version of 3D Print Hub.
Like the last ten releases of ZBrush itself, the update is free to existing users.
A cut-down version of ZBrush aimed at less demanding jobs
First released in 2016, ZBrushCore is a cut-down version of Pixologic’s digital sculpting software.
Users get 35 of ZBrush’s 300-plus sculpting brushes, plus support for InsertMultiMesh and DynaMesh, and basic rendering options, either via BPR or a separate paid add-on for KeyShot.
Options for painting, masking or polygrouping models are basic, and there is no support for most of ZBrush’s advanced features, including its automatic retopology, hard-surface modelling and Live Booleans toolsets.
Scripts, plugins and macros are also disabled.
Adds some of the major new features from ZBrush 4R8, but not from ZBrush 2018 itself
To that, ZBrushCore 2018 adds several features from last year’s ZBrush 4R8, including two of its Vector Displacement Mesh (VDM) brushes: Chisel3D and ChiselCreature.
The brushes are designed to enable artists to stamp more complex overhanging forms – anything from overlapping scales to entire body parts – into sculpts, using ‘3D alpha’ maps.
ZBrushCore users also get ZBrush 4R8’s Gizmo3D primitives, and six of its 27 Gizmo3D deformers, designed for making quick overall adjustments to a model in a similiar way to deformers in other DCC apps.
The update also adds ZBrush 4R8’s 3D text and SVG import capabilities. We wrote about all of the tools in our original story on ZBrush 4R8, so check it out for more details.
However, despite its version number, ZBrushCore 2018 doesn’t add the major features from this year’s ZBrush 2018.
In particular, ZBrushCore users don’t get the new Sculptris Pro dynamic tessellation system, which automatically adjusts the resolution of a mesh to make sculpting more like working with real clay.
New options for mesh decimation and export
ZBrushCore 2018 also adds a cut-down version of ZBrush’s Decimation Master mesh-optimisation plugin: rather than being able to choose any target poly count, users get presets for 20K, 35K, 75K, 150K or 250K.
Users also now get the full version of the 3D Print Hub plugin, designed to export models for 3D printing in STL, VRML or OBJ format.
The update also removes poly count limitations when exporting STL or VRML files, although the maximum mesh resolution supported internally remains 20 million polys, as opposed to 100 million in ZBrush itself.
There are also a few smaller new features, which you can find via the links below.
Pricing and availability
ZBrushCore 2018 is available for 64-bit Windows Vista+ and 64-bit Mac OS X 10.7+. The update is free to existing users; new licences of the software cost $149.95.