This page presents the Preferences window of Substance Designer, and the settings contained within.
You can find the Preferences window through the Edit menu in the main top bar of Substance Designer. This dialog lets you adjust a number of settings.
It is organised in tabs covering different areas of behaviour and functionality. We strongly recommend you review all of these settings to get a better insight on how Substance Designer operates, and how it can be tailored to your workflow.
Recent documents list contains
This allows you to select the number of documents to list in the Recent Packages entry of the File item in the Main Menu.
History stack size
This indicates the number of available undo operations at any given time in the Edit > Undo item of the Main Menu.
The more undo operations you need, the more memory Substance Designer will require.
Choose the language of the application
This setting lets you change the language used in Substance Designer.
Changes to this setting will take effect after restarting Substance Designer.
Invert zoom in views
Determines whether the suggested save/export path is your last selected path, or the SBS package's path. The last selected path is saved across sessions.
Default: Last path
When the image data of a graph exceeds the allocated memory pool (see below Memory > Image Cache), the overflowing data is written on disk. This setting lets you define the location the overflowing image cache data is written to.
This location is also used to store a copy of the currently open SBS package with the latest modifications since the last manual save.
Default: Path depending on system OS
Substance Designer keeps in cache a full-resolution, uncompressed image for each rendered node in the current graph.
Instance nodes will generate these images for all nodes of the graph they reference, and delete them once their outputs have been computed. Only the outputs are kept in memory at that point.
You can set the maximum cache size allocated to thumbnails and images in system memory, and see the current usage. If the cache data overflows its allocated pool, the excess data is written to the Temporary Folder (see above Paths > Temporary Folder).
This allocation is calculated automatically to approximately 75% of the total system memory pool. To set this value manually, select the Custom option and set a value in the adjacent input field.
To prevent this from happening, we recommend taking a look at the suggestions for decreasing a graph's memory footprint in the Performance Optimization Guidelines section of the documentation.
During specific tasks, such as image conversions for thumbnails or the 2D View, Substance Designer will create separate jobs and distribute them across the system processing cores for efficiency. Each job will write data to system memory to perform its operations.
This setting lets you define the allocated memory pool for all concurrent jobs. When this pool is entirely used, Substance Designer will queue new jobs until the current ones have completed.
This allocation is calculated automatically to approximately 10% of the total system memory pool. To set this value manually, select the Custom option and set a value in the adjacent input field.
Disable High DPI
High DPI mode will maintain consistent scaling of text and user interface elements independently of the system's display and scaling settings.
Changes to this setting will take effect after restarting Substance Designer.
Substance Designer includes an auto-save feature, which creates copies of the current state of open SBS packages at set periods of time. Auto-saves are placed in an .autosave folder at the SBS package location.
Auto backup every # minutes
The time period between each auto-save.
|Keep up to # versions|
The maximum number of auto-saves to keep at any given time.
When the maximum amount of versions is reached, newer backups will delete the oldest backups.
Please also note auto-saves should be opened after moving them to the original SBS package location. They should not be opened at their current location.
Cooking Size Limit
GPU Cache Limit
This setting lets you define how much memory Substance Designer should set aside for caching render stages. Usually, the Substance Engine will cache the output of each node in a Substance graph.
Default: 2048 MB
Automatically send usage statistics
Lets Substance Designer automatically send us usage statistics.
Please refer to the Projects Settings page.
Automatically compute node thumbnails
If checked, Substance Designer will automatically render all node thumbnails when loading the graph.
Display comments at a constant size (zoom/unzoom)
If checked, the screen size of the text in Comment graph items will remain constant, regardless of the graph zoom level.
Automatically display newly created compositing node
If checked, the 2D View will automatically update to display the output of a newly created node.
Automatically insert color/greyscale conversion node
If checked, Substance Designer will automatically resolve Color/Grayscale connection types mismatches, by placing specific nodes to perform the appropriate conversion.
When a Grayscale output (gray connector) is connected to a Color input (yellow connector), a Gradient Map node is automatically placed between the two connectors.
When a Color output (yellow connector) is connected to a Grayscale input (gray connector), a Grayscale Conversion node is automatically placed between the two connectors.
Enable graph editing in context
If checked, you can edit graphs referenced by instances using the information passed in the instance by the current graph. To do this, right-click on an instance node and select Open Reference In Context, or use the Ctrl+E keystroke.
This means an instanced graph can be edited in the context of the graph it is instanced into. This is very useful for seeing the effects of the edits on the graph you were working in.
Open Reference In Context
Tab key shows node menu
If checked, the Tab key will open the Node Menu, replicating the functionality of the 'Space' key.
Enable creation of nodes by click-dragging connectors
If checked, when you click on any connector, drag the cursor and release the created link in graph empty space, the Node Menu will be displayed.
The menu will also be filtered according to the type of the connector which was clicked on. This means only nodes which are compatible with the clicked connector will be displayed.
| Environment hidden by default |
Determines the Environment default visibility setting. When hidden, the backdrop of the 3D View is replaced with a solid color.
Lets you can also define the factor by which the texture applied to the environment is scaled down.
| Sample Count |
Impacts the size of the 3D View shaders' sample table . A higher value will result in higher image quality at the cost of performance.
The shaders' sample table is also impacted by the system's GPU and OS.
Defines which hardware resources are allocated to IRay computation. The list should include the CPU and all compatible GPU(s) detected.
Default: All checked.
For the best overall responsiveness, it is generally recommended to disable CPU rendering.
For multi-GPUs configurations, it is recommended to disable SLI and select only one GPU for the best reliability.
If checked, raytracing will be performed on the GPU for compatible bakers.
The following GPU raytracing backends will be the default depending on the GPU architecture:
You can use the following command line arguments when starting Substance Designer to force the use of a different GPU raytracing backend:
--force-optix: force the use of Optix on Nvidia Turing or newer GPUs
--force-dxr: force the use of DXR on Nvidia Pascal GPUs
|The option will trigger a recalculation of all Library thumbnails, which will automatically replace the previous ones.|
Substance Designer lets you assign your own custom shortcuts for node creation. Shortcuts can be assigned for nodes in all Graph Types: Substance Compositing Graphs, Functions, FX-Maps and MDL Graphs.
No shortcuts are assigned by default, you are free to customize this to your liking. Any node can be assigned a shortcut, even custom library nodes.
In case of a conflict with another node shortcut, or a built-in program shortcut, the entry will be highlighted and you get a warning. The shortcut will be disabled until the conflict is resolved.