Autodesk releases Maya 2020

After release 3D Studio Max, its turn of Maya 2020 and the list of improvements are huge. So much so that that this article is unable to cover all of them! Here is an attempt to cover the major changes.

  • Animation productivity and workflow improvements:
    • Cached Playback updates
    • Cached Playback Dynamics support
    • Auto snap keys to whole frame
    • Ghosting Improvements
  • Bifrost Extension for Maya plug-in: new procedural node graph for creating simulated effects and custom behavior. It includes sample scenes and compounds, as well as solvers for aero, combustion, cloth and particle simulation. 
  • Animation bookmarks: Time Slider Bookmarks are introduced tool that lets you flag events on the Time Slider with coloured tags so you can draw attention to moments in time.
  • Arnold GPU included in Maya 2020: Arnold for Maya (mtoa) version 4.0.0, which uses the Arnold 6 core, can now be used for production rendering on both CPU and GPU.
  • Polygon Remesh and Retopologize: Two new commands in the Mesh menu make it easy to fix or add topology to a selected mesh
  • Rigging Improvements: A new matrix input, parentOffsetMatrix, has been added to all Transform-derived nodes to simplify the Dependency Graph (DG) and directed acyclic graph (DAG) graphs.
    • keeps translation, rotation, and scale channels on driven transforms unpopulated and available for animation
    • reduces the number of DG and DAG nodes and connections riggers need to create
    • lets you define the position of a node when its transform attributes are zeroed out
    • reduces computational overhead and simplifies editing in the node editor.
  • Better audio management
  • Graph Editor improvements
  • New Standard Surface shader available: can be used to model materials used in visual effects and animation productions. It’s a render agnostic surface shader that’s easy to use and gives you a minimal set of the most useful artist-friendly parameters.
  • New area lights Normalize option: lets you modify the size of the light without affecting the light intensity.
  • Other Improvements that can be seen in the release notes.




Abhishek is a Finance Professional and has worked in multiple MNCs. However, he is also an avid tech reader and tinkerer with over 20 years of experience. His passions include 3D animation and drawing Illustrations. His creations can be viewed at

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