Karma Renderer FAQs


What is the main difference between Karma and Mantra?

Mantra renders from Houdini using the ifd format and is not available as part of the Solaris LOP context.

Karma renders using the USD format and can only be utilized from within the Solaris LOP context.

Is Karma ready for production use?

With H18, Karma is available in beta and is not full featured for production use, Please refer to the table below to see which features are available and which ones are missing.

If you are using Solaris for lighting, you may want to consider another Hydra delegate such as RenderMan while Karma is in beta.

How does Mantra compare to the Karma beta that shipped with H18?
Feature Mantra Karma 18 Karma 18.5
Status Production-ready Beta Beta
       
CPU Renderer Yes Yes Yes
GPU Renderer No Planned for Future Release Planned for Future Release
       
USD/Solaris Support No Yes Yes
IFD Support Yes No No
Open Image IO Yes | with Env Variable Yes Yes
       
Standard Surface Shader Principled - VEX Principled - VEX Principled - VEX
VEX shading Yes Some shading functions still under development Some trace() function support
       
CVEX: Lens Shader Yes Under development Yes
CVEX: Volume Procedurals Yes Planned for Future Release Planned for Future Release
       
Toon Shader VEX Shading VEX Shading VEX Shading
Rounded edge/Dirt masks Yes Planned for Future Release Yes
Texture baking Yes Planned for Future Release Planned for Future Release
       
Material Overrides Material Stylesheets [USD] | Assign Material and Material Variation LOPS [USD] | Assign Material and Material Variation LOPS
       
Adaptive Sampling Yes Yes Yes
Motion Blur Yes Yes Yes
Depth of Field Yes Yes Yes
Sub Surface Scattering Yes Yes Yes
Random Walk Sub Surface Scattering No Yes Yes
Volumes Yes 80% Support | Under development 80% Support | Under development
Heightfields Yes Planned for Future Release Yes
Instancing Yes Yes Yes
Nested Instancing  No Yes Yes
Deferred Geometry Load Yes Planned for Future Release Planned for Future Release
Subdivision HoudiniSubdiv/OpenSubdiv OpenSubdiv OpenSubdiv
Displacement Shading Yes Yes Yes
Crowd Support Yes Partial Support | USDSkel support, but not optimized Partial Support | USDSkel support, but not optimized
NURBS Yes Planned for Future Release Planned for Future Release
Lens Shaders Yes Planned for Future Release Custom VEX lens shaders
IES Lights Yes Planned for Future Release Custom VEX light shaders allow for arbitrary light sources
Absorption and Nested Dialectrics Yes Planned for Future Release Planned for Future Release
       
Denoising Optix Optix | Intel Planned for Future Optix | Intel
AOVs Yes Yes Yes
Deep Images Yes Planned for Future Release Planned for Future Release
Cryptomatte Yes Planned for Future Release Yes
       
Fur & Hair Yes Partial Support | Under development Yes
Render Curves Yes Partial Support | Under development Yes
       
Viewport Render Yes Yes Yes
Render View Yes Planned for Future Release Yes
Interactive Mplay Yes No Yes
Render Snapshot Gallery Yes No Yes
Render to Disk Yes Yes Yes
HQueue - Distributed Rendering Yes Yes via Husk Yes via Husk
Standalone Command-line render Yes Partial Support via Husk | Under development Yes via Husk
CheckPointing Yes Partial Support | Resuming not available yet Yes via Husk
     
VEX FUNCTIONS      
- gather loops Yes Under development Simple Trace (no shading)
- illuminance loops Yes Never will be supported Never will be supported
- trace Yes Under development Simple trace function (no shading)