A new version for Arnold, Solid Angle’s unbiased production renderer made some huge strides adding a multitude of new features. If you use Arnold, you may have noticed that the aiStandard shader is no longer, replaced with the new Standard Surface Shader. This is because the latest version of the renderer decouples shaders from the rendering engine.
There are some changes to how the shader works in comparison to the now legacy aiStandard. The new Standard Surface shader is still monolithic in premise, capable of reproducing any type of materials. There are some changes to it’s attributes though. It has been cleaned up somewhat, using base, specular, transmission, subsurface, coat, and emission attribute groupings.
If you were wondering on how some of the changes affect workflow, Lighting TD Arvid Schneider offers a basic introduction in his latest tutorial. Arvid runs through all of the attributes noting changes between the legacy shader and the new standard surface. He also shows how to make some basic materials such as plastic, metal and glass.
Inevitably the new shader should be more user friendly and fit for a wider variety of workflows. It’s just a matter of getting used to where things are and how it all works now, so thanks Arvid!