NVIDIA issued the following FAQ earlier this week:
NVIDIA will no longer offer new subscriptions to the Mental Ray plugins for Maya and 3ds Max, as well as Mental Ray standalone. Current customers who have purchased licenses from NVIDIA will continue to receive support through our Advanced Rendering Forum for the remainder of their subscription terms. All NVIDIA Mental Ray plugin customers with a subscription valid in November 2017, including educational license holders, are eligible to receive a license extension.
Q: What is happening to Mental Ray?
A: NVIDIA will no longer offer new subscriptions to the NVIDIA Mental Ray plugins for Maya and 3ds Max, as well as Mental Ray standalone from November 20th, 2017 onward. There will be maintenance releases with bug fixes throughout 2018 for plugin customers.
Q: What if I need to use Mental Ray beyond my subscription term?
A: All Mental Ray plugin customers with a subscription valid in November 2017, including educational license holders, will be eligible to receive a license extension. This is to cover any ongoing or upcoming projects our customers may have requiring Mental Ray that go beyond the end date of their license subscription. Email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: How long will NVIDIA provide support services for Mental Ray?
A: NVIDIA is committed to supporting Mental Ray for the foreseeable future in line with our contractual obligations with licensees. The public Mental Ray support forum will remain open.
Q: How long will Autodesk provide support services for their embedded Mental Ray?
A: Please contact Autodesk for the actual support plans of Mental Ray in the legacy editions of their products Maya and 3ds Max. NVIDIA will continue to provide Mental Ray support to Autodesk accordingly.
Q: How long will software companies that integrate Mental Ray (like MatiCAD or ViSoft) provide support for it?
A: Our support obligations to our ISVs extend into the 2019/2020 timeframe, and we will honor them. We have briefed these partners about our plan to discontinue support for Mental Ray after the end of our current contract, and we expect that they will opt to implement another rendering product by that time.
Q: What about Service Packs or Bug Fix updates?
A: There will be maintenance releases with bug fixes throughout 2018 for plugin customers. They will also add support for the upcoming NVIDIA Voltaâ„¢ GPU generation. These releases will be announced in the Mental Ray topics of the Advanced Rendering Forum.
Q: Can I purchase or renew my license subscription of Mental Ray?
A: As of November 20th, 2017, new licenses of Mental Ray products cannot be purchased anymore. However, licenses purchased before that date can still be managed in the NVIDIA Flexera licensing portal, for example, to move the license(s) to another machine. Current customers and educational institutions can request an extension to their license term. Email your request to email@example.com.
Q: I recently purchased a Mental Ray product. Can I get a full refund?
A: The standard NVIDIA refund policies apply which is 30 days after purchase. Please contact your reseller or, if purchased in the NVIDIA online store, refer to its "returns and cancellations" guidelines to process a return within 30 days of purchase.
Q: Who can I talk to if I have questions about my Mental Ray subscription?
A: If you have questions about this program, please contact your reseller, local NVIDIA representative, or send email to mentalray@NVIDIA.com.
Q: Why is Mental Ray being discontinued?
A: To bring AI and further GPU acceleration to graphics, NVIDIA continues to significantly focus on developing SDKs and technologies for software development partners who create professional ray tracing products. NVIDIA will focus on bringing GPU accelerated ray tracing technology to every rendering product out there. Therefore, it further invests into core rendering technology, like:
â€¢ NVIDIA OptiX and real-time ray tracing platforms for next-generation GPU architectures.
â€¢ MDL, the open Material Definition Language.
â€¢ NVIDIA IndeX, our platform technology for visualization and computing of multi-valued volumetric and embedded geometry data.
â€¢ NVIDIA Iray for physically based rendering platforms focusing on the CAD, product and architectural design markets.
With this focus, we have discontinued development of plugins and new features for Mental Ray. Learn more about GPU accelerated rendering software products from our partners.