RealFlow is a unique fluids and body dynamics software package which allows you to simulate anything from a single drop of water to a massive tsunami crashing across a beach, sweeping debris in its wake. RealFlow is the definitive tool for creating flawless large- and small-scale fluid and dynamics simulations straight out of the box.

RealFlow 10 New Features

RealFlow 10 introduces the new DYVERSO multiphysics solver, a highly-optimized CPU and GPU particles solver where different types of materials are simulated within the same framework and are able to interact with each other. The HYBRIDO solver is also better in terms of speed and memory. There are hundreds of issues fixed, improving the overall stability of the software, new features for a better workflow, useful new daemons and more!

The DYVERSO solver architecture has been redesigned to get the most out of the modern GPUs and multi-core CPUs.
GPU 2-8x (over CPU)
GPU CUDA 3x (over RealFlow 2015)
GPU OpenCL 3x (over RealFlow 2015)
CPU 2x (over RealFlow 2015)

The daemons’ main purpose is to transfer particle motion and animation (as a whole particle system) to geometry objects. In effect, particles function as bones for skinning the modified geometry.

Objects can be used to fade a daemon’s forces and control exactly how they should vanish.

Any object can be used to remove particles that are inside.


HIGHLIGHTS: New solvers: 3x faster SPH, 6x faster position based fluids, even faster with GPU

• RF2015 Dyverso solvers offer a huge speed up on small to medium scale simulations.

• These solvers have been rewritten from scratch and with GPU in mind to take advantage of new hardware options.

• Scenes that with previous RealFlow versions might have taken hours can now be simulated in a matter of minute



HIGHLIGHTS: Enhanced UI: compact relationship editor

nodes, Nodes Panel: one click workflows, Nodes Params

Panel: animate button, expressions, lock params, ramps &

curves widgets, sliders & MMB Controls

• The RealFlow interface comes packed with loads of new enhancements in this 2015 version, making it more artist friendly.

• The Relationship Editor now has a much more compact look, to optimize space, and also shows the nodes icons, adding visual clues that speed up interaction.

• The Nodes panel includes a new section of one-click buttons to deal with bread and butter node actions such as simulation status, files export, visibility and shading, making common workflows faster and more intuitive.

• In the Parameters section you will see a massive revamp.

• Sliders, value changes with the middle mouse button, Curve and Ramp widgets, and the ability to keyframe with a single click, lock parameters and enter expressions very easily.

• Users can now add notes to any node too.

• Nodes with editable parameters, such as the new spline curves, now display visual clues on the viewport to help guide the user on how to start using the features.


HIGHLIGHTS: New Spline Nodes. Create splines to emit fluids from and control forces. Import your own SVG files into RealFlow as spline nodes.

• Spline nodes add an extra level of controllability to RealFlow simulations.

• Spline curves can be created interactively, or imported using the SVG format, and be used to emit fluid or control the Spline Daemon forces.



HIGHLIGHTS: New Text Tool for splines and geometry

• A new Tool for creating text has also been added and appears in different locations in the shelves.

• In the splines shelf the text tool allows for creating spline emitters and forces.

• In the Objects Shelf, the text tool generates text as native RealFlow objects.


HIGHLIGHTS: Daemons Enhancements: New Falloff Control

• With the additions of Daemons Falloff controls, the users now have the power to shape, even more artistically, how the forces affect the RealFlow simulations.

• Thanks to the enhancements to the user interface, controls such as spline curves are now possible to drive highly detailed effects.


HIGHLIGHTS: New Crown Daemon: Splashes everywhere!

• The New crown daemon adds a very fast and easy way to create this fluid effect that is always in demand.

• With just a few steps, users can define the shape of the splash crown they want to create, and the fluid will follow that shape, when it gets activated, and for the time the user decides the force to have an effect.


HIGHLIGHTS: Faster Meshing

• RealFlow 2015 now comes with OpenVDB meshing by default for both Particles and Hybrido fluids solutions.

• With OpenVDB meshing, users can now get faster results and, with the new volume filters, fine tuning the look of the meshes becomes even easier than before.


HIGHLIGHTS: Faster and more accurate Hybrido simulations

• Hybrido also benefits from a more in depth integration of OpenVDB algorithms in RealFlow 2015.

• Hybrido Flip simulations are now faster, have more accurate collisions, and better memory management, especially when dealing with complex geometry and fast moving objects.


HIGHLIGHTS: New Spreadsheets panel.

Query, visualize, modify

• The New Spreadsheets Panel allows for a great deal of flexibility, control and customization over pretty much any of the simulation elements.

• It is now very straightforward for users to visualize, filter, modify and delete particle and object values, speeding up workflows and turnarounds, making RealFlow artists and TD’s lives much easier.


HIGHLIGHTS: Render your simulation in RealFlow

• Easy steps to import your scene, add the fluids and render them out from RealFlow.

• Powered by the most advanced physically-based render engine: Maxwell Render™.


Hybrido 2

RealFlow's grid fluid solver has been completely rewritten from scratch. Hybrido 2 provides a very high level of detail and is much faster than its forerunner. We also added sophisticated support for GPU-based simulations and a new mesh engine which is able to catch all the fine structures from the core fluid simulation. You will also find completely new emitters for splashes, foam and mist. Another improvement with Hybrido 2 is that you do not have to define domains anymore: the simulation now happens within an adaptive grid. Experienced users will find our new Hybrido fluid solver extremely easy to handle, because the workflow from previous RealFlow versions remains more-or-less the same. Of course, there are some changes, but they only affect simulation settings, preferences and some basic fluid parameters. We have also overworked the export resources and now, Hybrido 2 will generate much fewer files than before. Hybrido 2 is a cutting-edge technology that combines the latest developments in fluid simulation with our long-time expertise in this field. We have listened closely to our user's demands and suggestions and present you a state-of-the-art solver capable of handling tens of millions of particles.


Relationship Editor

Relationships, global and exclusive links have always played a very big role in RealFlow: you have been able to exclude certain nodes from a simulation, define which objects should react with each other or will not be taken into consideration at all. These connections had to be controlled with long lists of scene elements and a hierarchy that had to be maintained. This is a thing of the past, because the way you establish and manage these links has completely changed in RealFlow 2013. Now, a node-based workflow with a graphical interface provides full visual control over a project, its elements and relations. A flexible, versatile and clear interface makes it easy to keep track of your project – even with many hundreds of different nodes. The “Relationship Editor” is a fully-featured environment with incredible possibilities to remove and establish connections and change the way the scene's nodes will finally react with each other.


Visual Programming Interfaces

Scripting is one of RealFlow's core concepts and nearly any node or parameter can be accessed and influenced with a huge set of Python statements and functions. Although scripting opens the door to a whole new world of fantastic possibilities, there is a downside: You have to learn a scripting language, become familiar with the SDK, the concepts of syntax and maybe even object-oriented programming. What if it were possible to simply drag and drop elements to a canvas, create links between them and connect various parameters with each other? This way you would not have to learn a complete language and struggle with Python's specialities and notations. The “Batch Graph” and “Simulation Graph” environment have been developed to assist you and ease your daily programming tasks. All available functions and commands of the Python SDK are now clearly arranged and you can start programming by simply linking nodes and their parameters.


Alembic File Format

Sometimes there are developments that literally thrill the VXF community: Radiosity and global illumination, unbiased rendering, displacement painting and the HDRI concept, to name but a few. Many of these inventions quickly found their way into the commercially available 3D applications. The Alembic file format, developed by Sony Pictures Imageworks and Industrial Light & Magic, is another example. The Alembic format is a hierarchical sampled data storage format and supports a complete representation of the original scene. It was designed to build a bridge between the wide variety of applications and is already supported by most of the leading 3D packages. RealFlow 2013 provides an implementation of the Alembic format as well and now data exchange is easier and more accurate than ever before.


GPU-based Simulations

Hybrido 2 also supports OpenCL GPU-based simulation – even in collaboration with your computer's CPU(s). With appropriate equipment you will be able to boost simulation speed and finish your fluid tasks in a fraction of the time. Due to the nature of today's graphic cards and hardware standards, we cannot support any existing model or driver, but we settled on up-to-date standards to offer the maximum possible compatibility. Please note that GPU-based simulations are only possible with Hybrido 2, RealFlow's Hybrido solver. Particle fluids, RealWave jobs or rigid/soft body dynamics do not benefit from this feature. Multiple GPUs are supported as well.


Maxwell Render Integration

Previews are a very important concept with simulations, because they are the only way to evaluate the results in realtime. Playback from the cached data is often not possible due to the large amount of data. Previously, it was only possible to create OpenGL previews from the simulation window. This is nothing more than a sequence of screenshots taken from each frame that will be assembled into a movie. Now, RealFlow provides Maxwell Render's realtime preview engine, called “FIRE”. With “FIRE” it is possible to create almost photo-realistic renders from the currently loaded simulation. You can even assign different materials and use some features from the RealFlow RenderKit, for example the “MultiPoint” technology for spray and foam rendering. Your previews will be taken to a much higher level with “FIRE” and for the first time you will get a render within RealFlow.



The “Fracture” tool has experienced a comprehensive update and now supports different modes to easily create broken glass, splinters and other types. You can create impact zones with a higher density of pieces at predefined locations, use supporting geometry to control the fracture process and simulate radial cracks. All these different modes are accessible under a clearly arranged interface.



In this version we have mainly focused on improvements and the new "Fracture" tools. One common issue with RealFlow's dynamics solver was a slight jitter or tremble at the beginning of a simulation. This unwanted effect can now be reduced and even completely removed with an “Anti-jitter” slider. The “Caronte” team has also worked on simulation speed and introduced a new system to improve quality. In RealFlow 2012, quality was determined with a few fixed adjustments, but now the solver's accuracy can be easily changed with a slider. One of the most important improvements to Caronte is that our rigid and soft body dynamics solver is now completely scale-independent.


General Improvements

You can find many more new parameters for different node types in RealFlow 2013. We have also improved the software's stability and fixed many bugs. The SDKs and APIs for C++ and Python have been updated to provide access to the new functions via programming and scripting. We also added demo scenes for each of RealFlow's main elements, e.g. Hybrido 2, graphs or Caronte body dynamics. You can open them, perform simulations and see how to work with RealFlow's exciting tools and solvers.


The RealFlow PipeLine





Specifications & Licensing

System Requirements

Windows (32 and 64):

Windows XP, Vista, 7 or Windows Server 2008.
2 GHz Intel® Pentium® 4 processor, Athlon 64 AMD or better.
2GB RAM minimum. 4GB of RAM memory is recommended.
Hardware-accelerated OpenGL® graphics card.
400 MB available hard disk space for installation.
3 button mouse.

Macintosh (32 and 64):

Mac OSX 10.5 and up.
Intel® processor is required.
2GB RAM minimum. 4GB of RAM memory is recommended
Hardware-accelerated OpenGL® graphics card.
1 GB available hard disk space for installation
3 button mouse.

Linux 64:

64 bits distribution with a 2.6 Kernel and glibc 2.5
2 GHz Intel® Pentium® 4 processor, Athlon 64 AMD or better.
2 GB RAM minimum. 4 GB of RAM memory is recommended
Hardware-accelerated OpenGL® graphics card.
300 MB available hard disk space for installation
3 button mouse.

Host Applications

RealFlow is Interoperable with the following via Plug-in

  • 3ds Max
  • LightWave
  • Softimage
  • Houdini
  • Maya
  • Cinema 4D

Plug-in Overview




RealFlow Standard Licenses

  • Standard licenses are GUI licenses for customers who want to work on scenes within RealFlow. Standard licenses are floating and work per concurrent user: a license can be installed on as many machines as you like, but it can only be used by one person at the same time. RealFlow 5 licenses do not have core limitations; most simulations will take advantage of all the cores on a user’s machine when required.
  • A Standard license comes with the complete feature package: the main RealFlow software plus plug-ins for a range of 3D and CAD applications free of charge. You will also receive one free RealFlow Renderkit license with each Standard license purchased.
  • Please note that all RealFlow software is download-only. Once you have placed an order, you will receive your license, download and installation instructions, and a confirmation by email as soon as your order is processed.


RealFlow Node Licenses

  • Node licenses are non-GUI licenses for customers who simply want to simulate their scenes. Due to their lack of interface, Node licenses are also up to 30% faster than Standard versions. With the new Job Manager and the new IDOC concept you can use several Nodes to simulate different parts of your scene at the same time in a network of computers.
  • Node licenses are floating and work per concurrent machine: a license can be installed on as many machines as you like, but it can only run on one machine at the same time. Node licenses do not have core limitations.
  • Please note that anyone looking to purchase Node licenses must also purchase or already hold at least one Standard license of RealFlow.

RealFlow Product Packs

The RealFlow Studio Bundle - (For medium studios with 11-50 VFX artists)

  • 2 x RealFlow 
  • 10 x RealFlow Render Kit
  • 10 x RealFlow Nodes

RealFlow UNLIMITED - (For large studios with 50+ VFX artists)

  • UNLIMITED RealFlow Standard, Node and RenderKit licenses, upgrades to the latest version and dedicated technical support.


RealFlow Learning Edition

  •  A restricted, non-commercial version of RealFlow
  • Full access to top-of-the-range Hybrido fluid technology
  • No watermark
  • Caronte body dynamics engine
  • The latest features of RealFlow
  • Free technical support and download access
  • Free plug-ins for all major 3D platforms
  • Compatible with Mac, Windows and Linux


  • For personal use only
  • Up to 100,000 particles
  • Up to 500,000 grid domain resolution
  • RFRK not included
  • XML import/export locked
  • Scenes created with Learning Edition cannot be loaded into other versions
  • No command line
  • Caronte - 100 objects only

Additional Info

Upgrades / Support

 Contact RFX Sales for pricing



RealFlow OnDemand:

A solution for those of you who:

  • Only use RealFlow for occasional projects but, when you do, require quick, short-term access to the latest version have a big RealFlow project on and need some additional RealFlow 'oomph' for a finite period are just curious and would like to have a play! Evaluate your workflow with additional GUI, RealFlow Node and RealFlow RenderKit licenses before committing to purchase

Available for RealFlow, RealFlow Nodes and the RealFlow RenderKit, RealFlow OnDemand allows you temporary access to everything you need, giving you the flexibility to use RealFlow on YOUR terms.

Call RFX sales for pricing !

Weekly and 30-Day rentals available for:

  • RealFlow Standard (GUI)
  • RealFlow Node (Simulation)
  • RealFlow RenderKit for mental ray
  • RealFlow RenderKit for Renderman


 Related Products

RealFlow is compatible with the following 3D platforms via plugins, which are freely available for all RealFlow license holders:

  • Autodesk 3ds Max
  • Autodesk Maya
  • Autodesk Softimage
  • Maxon Cinema 4D
  • Newtek Lightwave 3D
  • Side Effects Houdini

RealFlow works with both mental ray and Renderman render engines



Rendering Maya files with RF stuff in a Render Service provider, depends
on what's inside the Maya files:
Option A: Maya scene with RealFlow standard meshes. This was the classic
method, almost obsolete. These meshes are 'almost' conventional geometry,
but you just need the RealFlow plugin for Maya in order to read the
external .bin files sequence (each .bin is for a single frame). Stricltly,
you don't need neither RealFlow nor RFRK at all, but YOU WILL NEED the
Maya plugin (theoretically, only customers have access to the Download
area, but certainly you can get a RF demo thru the website, and this will
give you a 1 hour pass to the Gateway for downloading the software -not
needed- and the 3D platforms plugins too.
Option B: RFRK Meshes built on RealFlow GUI. The great 'unknown'. Exactly
the same case as in the previous one. RFRK meshes built within RealFlow
are saved as a .bin files sequence, and you'll need to load these sequence
via RF for Maya plugin, exactly the same way as in the previous case. You
DON'T need any RFRK licese (yes, you read it correctly!): as the RFRK
conversion from particles to meshes was done inside RealFlow and the
meshes are finally saved the same way as a standard mesh, in a single .bin
file per frame.
Option C: The most usual case today. Particles that you want to render
them as a mesh in render time or as particles themselves (like
micro-spheres) using the RFRK. In this case you'll need as many RFRK
licenses as simultaneous rendering jobs that you want to hold in your
network. Technically you're OK with -only- the RFRK package, licenses. I'd
say (not 100% sure, but a 98% sure) you must own a RF standard license in
order to purchase separate RFRK licenses.


Training / Resources


RealFlow has just released a new training suite, available for FREE on YouTube:

This series of videos will take you step-by-step through the different components which make up RealFlow in four easy-to-follow videos:

  • Hybrido
  • SPH Particle Fluids
  • RealWave
  • Caronte Body Dynamics

Videos produced by RealFlow Xpert: Thomas Schlick.


More RealFlow Training Resources