Key features of Autodesk Arnold

From furry creatures to wondrous landscapes, the robust Arnold toolset helps artists render professional-grade 3D characters and complex scenes with ease.

Characters from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem on a roof at night

Arnold GPU

Switch seamlessly between CPU and GPU rendering.

Subsurface scatter

High-performance ray-traced subsurface scattering eliminates the need to tune point clouds.

Hair and fur

Memory-efficient ray-traced curve primitives help you create complex fur and hair renders.

Motion blur

3D motion blur interacts with shadows, volumes, indirect lighting, reflection or refraction.


Render effects such as smoke, clouds, fog, pyroclastic flow and fire with volumetric rendering.


Efficiently ray trace instances of many scene objects with transformation and material overrides.

Subdivision and displacement

Create smooth, curved surfaces with support for Catmull-Clark subdivision.

Open Shading Language (OSL) support

Use Open Shading Language (OSL), an advanced shading language for Global Illumination renderers.

Light Path Expressions

Get power and flexibility to create Arbitrary Output Variables with Light Path Expressions (LPEs) to help meet the needs of production.

Adaptive sampling

Use another means of tuning images to reduce render times without jeopardising final image quality.

Toon shader

In combination with the Contour Filter, an advanced toon shader provides a non-photorealistic solution.


Powerful denoising solutions offer you the flexibility to use much lower-quality sampling settings.

Features of Autodesk Arnold

What’s in the Arnold toolset

Flexible and extensible API

Integrate Arnold into external applications and create custom shaders, cameras, light filters and output drivers.

Universal Scene Description (USD) support

Maximise the power of USD with Arnold in production scenarios.


Use Bloom, Light Mixer, Noice and OptiX denoiser imagers to control lighting effects and automatically denoise after each render.

Stand-alone command-line renderer

Arnold has a native scene description format stored in human-readable text files. Easily edit, read and write these files via the C/Python API.

Standard Surface shader

Produce a wide range of materials and looks with this energy-saving, physically-based uber shader.

Standard Hair shader

Render hair and fur with this physically based shader, based on the D’Eon and Zinke models for specular and diffuse shading.

Alembic procedural

Render Alembic files directly without any translation using a native procedural.

Profiling API and structured statistics

Identify performance issues and optimise rendering processes more easily with an extensive set of tools.

Material assignments and overrides

With operators, override any part of a scene at render time and enable support for open standard frameworks such as MaterialX.

Built-in Cryptomatte

Create ID mattes automatically with support for motion blur, transparency and depth of field.

Integrated OpenColorIO

Take advantage of OpenColorIO for state-of-the-art colour management.