Houdini 13.0 What’s new What's new in Houdini 13


  • You can now use Alt as the view key instead of/in addition to Space. Some view key combinations have changed to accommodate the use of Alt. See viewing for more information.

  • The new Data tree pane enables general editors of arbitrary data in Houdini. The data tree pane supports the new light bank and object appearance views.

  • The Select visible geometry only setting in the Select tool’s context menu is now also available in the Object Selection Mode and Geometry Selection Mode context menus as well.

  • You can now set menus to always appear to the left of the pointer instead of the right (Edit > Preferences > General user interface, turn on Left-hand menus). This is useful for right-handed people using touch/pen displays.

  • Improved asset browser pane.

Linear color workflow

  • Houdini is now set up to work in a linear color space/gamma of 2.2 by default.

  • VEX texture functions that work on 8-bit images will now convert the images from sRGB colorspace to linear. You can override this with a variadic argument.

  • VEX texture functions now take a "srccolorspace" variadic argument specifying the color space in which the texture is stored. The argument takes a string value of either "auto" (sRGB color space) or "linear" (linear color space). Using “linear” will force the texture lookup in the linear color space, as expected for displacement and bump maps. The Texture VOP now has a corresponding Source color space parameter.

  • The iconvert command line utility now now applies a gamma correction to color planes when converting to/from 8-bit color. You can disable this using -g off.


  • You can display low-detail proxies of complex geometry using the Display as menu on the Geometry object's Render tab. You can display only points, bounding box, or centroid.

  • You can change the headlight’s intensity and position using new settings in the viewport menu.

  • Each viewport can now have a separate background image and placement, making it easier to rotoscope in a quad view.

  • You can now show custom attribute values on polygons in the view.

  • Adjusting the view’s level of detail will update Alembic primitives without forcing a recook. Setting the level of detail less than 1 will set Alembic geometry to display as point clouds, then bounding boxes and center points.

  • When displaying point normals, auto-generated normals are now dimmer than actual normal in the geometry.

  • The normal lighting preview level now shows spotlight falloff.

  • Fixed color selection for custom attributes in the view.

  • Unconnected points now cast shadows and are easier to see and select in Object and DOP views.

  • Viewer and selection support for packed primitives.

  • The Frame/Draw time options in the viewport menu are replaced with a single option that shows the frame cook time if available, otherwise the viewport draw time.

  • Fixed Environment light background images in the viewer when the scene has no geometry.

  • Changed Box Zoom to dolly the camera instead of changing the field of view.

  • Added an option to set a limit on the amount of instanced geometry drawn, to prevent graphics card overload. Geometry beyond the limit can be replaced with a bounding box or point.

  • Shadow maps now work for simulations in the viewport.

Network editor

  • Fixed auto-pan when dragging nodes.

  • DOP node context menu now has Spreadsheet item to open a floating details view for the node’s geometry.