Reference/Release Notes/2.81/Eevee

Blender 2.81: Eevee

Shadows

New shadow defaults (32 samples)

Soft shadows were changed and now enabled with the Use Soft Shadow option in the render properties Shadow panel. This will progressive smooth shadows, in combination with a more conventional shadow filtering method (PCF). Exponential and Variance Shadow Mapping methods were removed. (d8aaf25c23fa)

This improves shadow accuracy, makes light and shadow setup simpler, and improves performance for soft shadows.

  • Enabling the Use Soft Shadow option will now anti-alias the shadow-maps (even if the light size is 0).
  • An automatic bias is computed based on the shadow map resolution. Increasing the shadow resolution will reduce the bias and thus light leaking.
  • Reducing the shadow-map resolution will incidentally increase the filter size (previously done by increasing the light shadow's Softness) and will lead to less shadow banding. However, this is a global parameter and cannot be tweaked per light.
  • The shadow Bias parameter now adds an additional bias to avoid false shadowing on depth discontinuity.

Other notable improvements:

  • Contact shadows are now following the light shape. The contact shadow Softness has been removed.
  • Sun lights now have their clip distances automatically computed.
  • Instanced lights and shadow casters are now supported.

Transparent BSDF

Transparency handling has been reworked and now supports the same BSDF combinations as Cycles (d5002f007e8d).

Example of effect that could not be done with previous transparency
Associated node tree

The Additive and Multiply blend mode have been replaced by shader equivalent that is compatible with Cycles. Compatibility code has been added to load blend file containing materials using these deprecated blend modes, but there is a corner case where it can fail. (13d469e6f0c5)

Node setup replacing deprecated blend modes.

Holdout

Holdout is now supported and works with both opaque and semi transparent surfaces. (67c10dbf1322)

Holdout shaders examples.

Other Changes

  • Bump mapping was changed to give more accurate results closer to Cycles. In particular it makes bump mapping with procedural textures work much better than before, at the cost of some performance.
  • The Separate Albedo option is now always on and removed from the UI. Mixing (the active) SSS node and other BSDFs is now more correct.