VFX Reference Platform 2023-2024

Tears of Steel by Blender Studio.

Based on feedback received on the announcement early this year and at SIGGRAPH 2022, there is a new direction regarding Blender and the VFX Reference Platform.

Upcoming VFX Platform Specs

In 2023 and 2024 Blender will be fully compatible with the VFX Reference Platform specs.

Besides helping studio integration, this also facilitates ongoing development to integrate Hydra render delegates with Blender, which requires more strict alignment.

In Q3 of 2024 this decision will be reviewed based on feedback collected on the blender.org channels: code.blender.org, devtalk.blender.org, bf-committers mailing-list.

Custom Builds for VFX Platform 2022

The official Blender 3.3 LTS is compiled with Python 3.10 making it incompatible with the VFX Reference Platform of 2022. However, there is a new build option in the blender-v3.3-release branch to compile Blender with Python 3.9 support.

Check the build instructions for more information. If you need help with the builds please use devtalk.blender.org or blender-builds on blender.chat.

Get Involved

If you work in a pipeline that needs integration with Blender and relies on VFX Reference Platform compatibility please make yourself heard online or contact the Blender Foundation directly. Organizations and studios are always welcome to join the conversation and be an active part of the development process.

Join the Blender Development Fund to support this initiative.

Dalai Felinto
Blender Development Coordinator

Amsterdam, 27th September. 2022

14 comments 9,362 views
  1. Does this mean we are finally getting ACES officially supported?

  2. That’s an excellent news, I hope it stays that way.

  3. Great news!

  4. brilliant news. I don’t think the community really understands what they’re going to gain when Hydra is properly integrated into blender.

  5. I really don’t understand this obsession with new Python versions. I guess following the VFX standards it is beneficial for Blender, since the third party developers would not be “surprised” by a new Python version. For me, it is very annoying have to recompile code because Blender was delivered with a new version of Python without any really justification whatsoever.

    • > (…) Blender was delivered with a new version of Python without any really justification whatsoever.

      There were justifications, and there were presented here: https://code.blender.org/2022/02/vfx-reference-platform/

      > For me, it is very annoying have to recompile code

      I’m sorry to hear that. I’m not sure if you are referring to recompile your own application or Blender itself.

  6. Does this mean there won’t be official Blender 3.x builds that support python 3.9? I thought in one of the discussion threads on devtalk.blender.org said that the upcoming Blender 3.4 would support python 3.9.

    • > Does this mean there won’t be official Blender 3.x builds that support python 3.9?

      That’s correct. For now anyways.

      It should be simple enough now for TDs (or any tech savvy user) to build Blender with Python 3.9. Are you having troubles building it?

      > I thought in one of the discussion threads on devtalk.blender.org said that the upcoming Blender 3.4 would support python 3.9.

      I’m assuming you are referring to these meeting notes: https://devtalk.blender.org/t/2022-09-06-blender-admins-meeting/25750

      At the time having an official build was considered as an option. The final decision happened in the follow up meeting: https://devtalk.blender.org/t/2022-09-21-blender-admins-meeting/25920

      • We are an addon developer (RenderMan). Does this mean you’re expecting addon developers who have not moved their code to support python 3.9, to provide their end users a custom build of Blender?

        • Hi, it is the end users that need Python 3.9 and Blender 3.3 that will have to build their own custom build of Blender. Not add-on developers.

          Add-ons targeting the “VFX Reference Platform” audience in 2022 will need to make sure their add-ons is not using anything that is specific to Python 3.10 (or create a new version of their add-on).

          > addon developers who have not moved their code to support python 3.9

          I don’t understand what you mean here, could you elaborate further? I tried to look at the RenderMan add-on documentation page but I got even more confused:

          “Please note that due to the change in the version of Python in Blender 2.93, RenderMan only supports Blender versions up to 3.0 at this time.”

          Was the mentioned version of Blender supposed to be 3.1 instead of 2.93? Was the RenderMan add-on ever ported to Python 3.9 even?

          • Yes, RenderMan was updated to support python 3.9. This was in response to the upgrade to python 3.9 in Blender 2.93.

            I believe you guys started going to python 3.10 in Blender 3.1. This is why the RenderMan documentation says we can only support up to Blender 3.0 (we still have support for Blender 2.83 LTS as that was python 3.8, I believe).

            > it is the end users that need Python 3.9 and Blender 3.3 that will have to build their own custom build of Blender. Not add-on developers.

            Sure, but that doesn’t seem very user-friendly. There’s no way we can expect all of our users to know how to download compilers, type in build commands, or know how to navigate their way through a command shell.

        • Since official Blender 3.3 LTS releases and all Blender releases in 2023 will be using Python 3.10, supporting that is going to reach most users. And you may be able to support both LTS and 2023 releases with a single add-on version.

          For 3.3 LTS with Python 3.9, we don’t have specific expectations for add-ons. If you have customers who need this you can support it. Maybe the same version that supports 2.93 LTS can also be made to work for 3.3 LTS with Python 3.9. But we’re not demanding the entire add-on ecosystem to support two Python versions.

  7. Are there compiled versions of this on the website? I have had to have two versions of Blender on my system: the released version of 3.3 LTS and a copy of 3.0.1 just to be able to use Renderman 24.

In order to prevent spam, comments are closed 45 days after the post is published.
Feel free to continue the conversation on the forums.