AVS/Express 8.1 now available

AVS/Express is a comprehensive and versatile data visualization tool for both non-programmers and experienced developers. Rapid data analysis and rich visualization techniques combined with an intuitive, graphical application development environment make AVS/Express the best choice for challenging problems in a vast range of fields including science, engineering, medicine, telecommunications and environmental research.

For information and trial download links please contact info@avs.com.


What’s New in AVS/Express 8.1

Platform updates

  • Support for Visual Studio 2012 on Windows Vista and 7 (VS2012 is not available on Windows XP, use the VS2010 port).
  • Support for Mac OS X 10.8 (Mountain Lion) in addition to continued support for 10.6 and 10.7.
  • The following platforms have been dropped for this release: Linux EL4, Visual Studio 2005 and Visual Studio 2008.

New animation macros

Two new macros, fly_through and fly_object, have been added to the animation kit. These macro respectively allow the user to move the camera or a set of objects along a timeline by setting up checkpoints on a base plane. fly_through allows the camera position, speed and direction to be controlled and fly_object allows one set of objects to be moved through a scene while the remaining objects are static. Please refer to the example applications in the “What’s New” library, each of which contains a sample timeline which can be read in.


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Fullscreen viewer mode

On Windows, a viewer window can now be made to fill the entire screen. In the View Editor, Options panel is a toggle to turn on the fullscreen mode. Press the escape key to return to the standard size. If for some reason AVS/Express is unable to correctly determine the screen size (for example when using a multiple monitor setup), the fullscreen width and height can be manually set in the UI.

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New macros

Please see the “What’s New” library for example applications demonstrating these new macros.


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  • Cone – new cone geometry
  • crop_view – crop a field based on the current view window, with an optional margin
  • curvature – calculate the curvature of a surface
  • downsize_scat – downsize scattered data by superimposing a uniform mesh
  • FOrthoPlane – plane geometry fixed to the X, Y or Z axis
  • FPlane_Data – enhanced version of the FPlane geometry where a node data component representing the X position, Y position, radius or angle can be added
  • GISReadShape – read ESRI shape files
  • interp_data_orthoplane – interpolate node data using an orthoplane
  • local_rotate – animate rotation of a scene around the X, Y or Z axis
  • make_volume – map non-uniform data onto a uniform grid with a single “short” data component suitable for volume rendering
  • PickCenter – pick the center point about which an object is rotated
  • point_render – draw an unstructured field as illuminated points
  • project_vector – calculate either an axial or tangential projection of a vector component
  • Read_UCD_Cache – speed up reading of large time dependent UCD files by caching some timesteps in memory
  • Read_WRF – read Weather Research and Forecasting Model data
  • select_material – select particular cell sets based on their material id
  • stream_color – add color to streamlines based on various properties of the lines
  • tensor_val – calculate various stress values from an input tensor
  • tensor_glyph – create line or diamond glyphs representing stress values
  • Write_KML_Image – write an image embedded in a .kml file suitable for viewing in Google Maps
  • ZoomBox – zoom into a view by drawing a box

Updates to multithreaded macros

All multithreaded macros have been updated so that when instanced they use the same number of threads as the number of detected cores on the system, rather than requiring the developer to specify each one. If this behavior is not desired, the default number of threads when a macro is instanced can be set using the environment variable or config file setting XP_NUM_THREADS.

New multithreaded versions of existing macros

  • mt_advector
  • mt_advector_point
  • mt_interp_data
  • mt_isosurface_nest
  • mt_slice
  • mt_slice_arbitplane
  • mt_slice_plane

Updated macros

  • advector – add tailed lines at a particular release interval and length
  • crop_area_box – now supports structured fields
  • crop_cylinder – now supports structured field
  • crop_sphere – now supports structured fields
  • interp_data – the null value can now be specified
  • Read_UCD – retain the node/cell id values from the UCD file