Houdini Indie FAQs


What is the difference between Houdini Indie and Houdini Engine Indie?

Houdini Indie lets you work interactively in the Houdini GUI, load Houdini Digital Assets into other apps using Houdini Engine plug-ins and to render with Mantra. Houdini Engine Indie does not let you use the Houdini GUI but does let you work at a command-line level, load Houdini Digital Assets into other apps using Houdini Engine plug-ins and render with Mantra.

Is it possible to use Houdini Indie with 3rd party renderers such as RenderMan or Arnold to Houdini?

Houdini Indie works with the following third party renderers: RenderMan, Arnold, Redshift and OctaneRender. V-ray and Maxwell Render will be supported in the future. These renderers will let you render under the Houdini Indie limited commercial conditions.

Are there any render limitations when rendering assets loaded into other apps using the Houdini Engine when using either a Houdini Indie or Houdini Engine Indie license?

The Houdini Indie render restriction only applies to renderings within the Houdini GUI including Mantra and other 3rd party renderers. Rendering from other applications using the Houdini Engine will not have the same restriction although the work created must respect Houdini Indie’s limited commercial license.

We are going to earn over 100K USD but we haven't yet so can we use Houdini Indie until we do?

Yes, but you will have to purchase commercial licenses as soon as you cross the 100K USD threshold.

We are a small studio (legal entity) making less than $100,000 annually. Can we use Houdini Indie for our projects?

Yes you can use up to three Houdini Indie licenses and three Houdini Engine Indie licenses. Once gross revenues reach $100,000, full commercial licenses will be required.

We are a studio making more than $100,000 annually. Can we use Houdini Indie for our projects.

No. You will need Houdini commercial licenses for your work.

We are a studio making more than $100,000 annually. Can we use Houdini Indie for internal testing purposes only? If we decide to use Houdini in production, we will buy full commercial licenses.

Houdini Indie can be used for evaluations but cannot be used for any commercial work because of the studio’s income. Please contact an account manager sales@sidefx.com to get a commercial eval license if you want to run a more effective test.

We are a small group of individuals working on a “side” project. There is no legal entity formed. Can we use Houdini Indie if we earn over $100,000 but individually we are each under $100,000?

As long as the new side project stays separate from your other jobs then it is allowed.

I am an individual working on my own personal project. Can I use Houdini Indie if I have a day job where I earn over $100,000 however the revenues I earn from the personal project will be under $100K

As long as the personal project stays separate from your day job then it is allowed.

I am an individual working as a freelancer. Can I use Houdini Indie if I earn under $100,000 annually but I am contracted to do work for a large company that has revenues over $100,000?

If you produce final renders or baked out data for the large company then they are considered a client and you may use Houdini Indie. If you want to share scene files and assets then you are partners and will require a commercial license.

I am an individual working for a large company but I earn under $100,000 annually. Can I use Houdini Indie for work at my company?

No. The company’s income applies in this situation and you would require a commercial license.

With the $100K revenue limit in section 6.2 of the EULA. What does content refer to here?

The clause "“...in the case of an Indie User that is using the Software to create content for a third party that will use such content in connection with a Commercial activity…”" is referring to situations where larger studios want to contract work out to freelancers. In those cases the combined gross income of the studio and the freelancer needs to be less than $100K USD if you are sharing scene files and assets. If you are delivering final renders or baked out data then the clients income does not need to be considered.

If I qualify for and use Houdini Indie, then later make enough that I need to step up to a full commercial license, can my Indie .hiplc files be converted to commercial .hip files?

Yes. At your request, Side Effects will do a one-time conversion of .hiplc and .otllc files to commercial files after you have purchased commercial licenses.

If I have both commercial and indie licenses, can I interchange the files between the two?

No. Houdini commercial and indie licenses should not be used in the same pipeline.

Can I run both commercial and indie licenses on the same machine, if I keep files separate?

This is not prohibited but also not recommended. Since Houdini commercial and indie licenses can not be used in the same pipeline, it would be too easy to accidentally get .hip and .hiplc files mixed up.

What happens to my node-locked license if I upgrade my computer hardware? Will it still work? Can I update it for my new computer?

The Houdini Indie license server allows you to return your license to SideFX from your old machine then reacquire it to the new one. You can do this a couple times a year unless you have system issues then you can contact support about extending this capability to get you up and running.