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Blender 4.1: Geometry Nodes

Baking

  • The Bake node allows saving and loading intermediate geometries (00eaddbd51).
  • Baking no longer loses materials (2d2b087fcf).
  • Duplicate data in bakes is better deduplicated, resulting in much smaller files in cases with identical geometry or attributes (586fadd6d2).
  • Volumes can now be baked (444e148976).
  • The bake cache is no longer lost after undo (7bb1ce1241).

Nodes

  • The Musgrave Texture node was replaced by an extended Noise Texture node.
  • The Menu Switch node allows creating custom "enum" menus to allow switching between options in the group interface (5ad49f4142).
  • The Split to Instances node allows separating a geometry into multiple pieces based on a group ID (5bee6bcedc).
  • The Index Switch node allows choosing between an arbitrary number of inputs with an index (8d5aa6eed4).
  • The Sort Elements node allows reordering geometry elements based on some sort key. (37b2c12cfa).
  • The Fill Curve node now has a "Group ID" input to limit filling to specific curve groups (90de0368cd).
  • Node tools are now supported in object mode (3fcd9c9425).
  • The Rotate Rotation node replaces the Rotate Euler node as a faster and clearer way to modifier rotations (f4867c0d70).
  • Five nodes have been changed to use the rotation socket introduced in the last release (600a133521, 49087a84d0).
    • Distribute Points on Faces
    • Instance on Points
    • Rotate Instances
    • Transform Geometry
    • Object Info
    • Instance Rotation
  • The Active Camera input node gives the scene's current camera object (75f160ee96).
  • The Set Curve Normal node now has the ability to set free ("custom") normals (f63a7c1ee9).
  • The Viewer node overlay can now be displayed as text values directly instead of colors (b85011aee0).
  • The Blackbody shader node is supported in geometry nodes (3f485c8bf3).

Modifier

  • The panels in the geometry nodes modifier have been reorganized (9df4ffc0c2):
    • The Output Attributes panel is hidden when it is empty.
    • A new Manage panel contains a new Bake and Named Attributes panel.

Performance

  • The Extrude Mesh can be over 6 times faster for large meshes with many vertex groups (6aaa74cda9).
  • The Shortest Edge Paths node can be at least 60% faster (c106066900).
  • The Face Group Boundaries node can be over three times faster (5429e006c8).
  • The Edges to Face Groups node can be over seven times faster (274b2dbe5e, 33442e0992).

Auto Smooth

  • The mesh "Auto Smooth" option has been replaced by a modifier node group asset (89e3ba4e25).
    • This means geometry nodes now has the ability to set edge sharpness and create split normals without the need for an "original" mesh with the auto smooth option.
      • The behavior of sharp handles in the *Curve to Mesh* node is also controllable, and possible to create from scratch.
    • Blender automatically chooses whether to calculate vertex, face, or face corner normals given the presence of custom normals and the mix of sharp/smooth edges and faces.
    • Face corner "split" normals are calculated when there is a mix of sharp and smooth elements.
    • For more information on the impact to modeling, see the Modeling section.
    • For more information on the Python API changes, see the Python API section.

A node group asset to replace the behavior of the Auto Smooth option