unfortunately, after decades of supporting the rendering community worldwide, the NVIDIA ARC Forum will go out of service, including all of its mental ray sections. That does not mean its vast valuable content is lost, but we will stop hosting it on the original website location.
For those of you who are searching for the download links of the free Mental Ray software, which we did publish in the forum as well, here you are. We include a copy of the text of the original announcement followed by all the links to the pieces of software.
The version 1.2 update of the NVIDIA Mental Ray for Maya and NVIDIA Mental Ray for 3ds Max plugins, and the corresponding Mental Ray Standalone distributions are based on the latest major mental ray version 3.14.5.
This software update introduces support for NVIDIA’s Volta GPU generation, and is based on CUDA 9. It will continue to work with the older GPU generations Pascal, Maxwell, and Kepler. The update also fixes a lot of known issues, and improves rendering performance especially for GI Next. Note, the plugin works in Maya 2018.5 dot release too.
Please note, the plugins are free to use for interactive rendering and rendering of still frames from within Maya or 3ds Max. The rendering of animations with Maya Batch, Backburner or Mental Ray Standalone will ask for a license though.
NVIDIA Mental Ray for Maya Plugin
NVIDIA Mental Ray for Maya Standalone
NVIDIA Mental Ray for 3ds Max
Hi Mental Ray users and lovers,
over the course of the past 12 months, we have converted most of you, the existing and eligible Mental Ray customers, to a perpetual licensing model. That is giving you plenty of time for finishing current Mental Ray projects and for transitioning to alternative renderers in the coming years.
As some of you have noticed, the NVIDIA Licensing Portal was shut down earlier this month. That means, the option to manage your license tokens and generate license files yourself is not available any longer. We are working on a different solution that will allow you to move Mental Ray to another machine easily. We are going to announce any news here, on this blog.
Please do not hesitate to contact arc-licensing(at)nvidia.com in case of licensing issues or requests.
Happy (and uninterrupted) rendering!
we have created a new build of the NVIDIA Mental Ray for Maya plugin, version 1.2.1. The primary purpose of this update is to fix a problem with the original installer, which stopped working with latest NVIDIA driver installers on Windows. At the same time, we also addressed few minor issues in the plugin itself, and in the Mental Ray core engine.
You can download the new version from our Mental Ray for Maya Forum for Linux, Windows, and Mac. This update is not auto-distributed through the NVIDIA Professional Application Center this time.
We would appreciate if you let us know that it works for you.
we got several reports that the installation of the Mental Ray products on Windows systems may fail, or may not start at all. It turns out, that this happens when the latest NVIDIA drivers (version >390) have just been installed before the plugin.
The reason is: the NVIDIA installer framework keeps some files on the system, in order to speed up subsequent installations, and to retain a history. The latest installer version coming with the most recent drivers is not compatible with the older Mental Ray installer version, unfortunately. We are working on a fix. For a quick workaround, please visit our forum post Mental Ray Installation Fails.
Sorry for the inconvenience, and Thank You for your patience.
For all users and lovers of mentalray and Mental Ray (as we used to call it lately),
in case you did not notice, I have sad news: we stopped selling NVIDIA Mental Ray and the related Autodesk Maya and 3ds Max plugins end of last year. For details see Mental Ray and Iray product updates.
Fortunately, those of you who purchased licenses from us, don’t worry, you can continue to use your Mental Ray product for as long as you wish. You are eligible to convert your licenses to perpetual, just contact us by email as mentioned in the FAQ above. The same is true for schools and institutions who have registered in our Mental Ray EDU program. It’s worth to note, that the perpetual licenses are free-of-charge, and therefore do not include any support.
Even if you happen to have no license, you can still freely use the Mental Ray plugins for interactive rendering in Maya and 3ds Max, like with Maya IPR and 3ds Max ActiveShade, as well as for rendering final quality still frames in Maya’s Render View and in the Rendered Frame Window of 3ds Max.
The plugins are essential if you want to load legacy mentalray scenes in recent Maya 2017/2018 or 3ds Max 2018, to render them, or to convert them to an alternative engine, at least. But more generally, you may use Mental Ray to learn all the fundamental rendering and lighting techniques like ray tracing, global illumination, image-based lighting and much more, from the software that was/is the defining standard for a lot of these features. The plugins offer the full functionality of Mental Ray no matter if you have a license or not.
To unlock rendering of animations with Maya Batch or Backburner or Mental Ray Standalone, you need a license. We are open to giving out licenses to cover your critical and ongoing Mental Ray projects. Just let us know.
You can find the download links of the latest versions in our forum at
NVIDIA ARC Forum – Mental Ray for Maya and
NVIDIA ARC Forum – Mental Ray for 3ds Max.
We just released a major update of the NVIDIA Mental Ray for Maya plugin, introducing support for the upcoming Volta GPU generation from NVIDIA using CUDA 9. If you are a user of this plugin then you should have received a notification from the NVIDIA taskbar tool. You may also download the latest version from our mental ray for Maya website.
We now introduce: Mental Ray for Maya 2018.
This is the first release of the NVIDIA mental ray plugin for Maya 2018, coupled with the matching NVIDIA mental ray Standalone. For release notes and download locations please visit our forum at Now Available: Mental Ray for Maya 2018.
Register now for an interactive discussion on the new mental ray for Maya on February 7 – Don’t miss out! Click here or on image below to register.