Alternative to Realflow and Blender

I love to play with fluids and fluids simulations. I am using Blender for that, but I am not satesfied with the quality of it.
Blender is greait for smoke and fire simulations. Real flow is amazing, but i can’t afford to pay almost 1000 Pound for it.
They do not have a free PLE or something either.

Is there any good alternatives to Realflow and blender when it comes to Fluid, don’t have to be open source, but don’t cost insane much either.

What about Mantaflow?

Houdini, from SideFX, you can export to Alembic and import in Blender, and they have a PLE!

there is a mantaflow Blender edition, I have not trie it yet.

Houdini Apprentice is free thats true, there are not so many and good tutorials for it, but are planning to look more into it.

Houdini Apprentice is free thats true, there are not so many and good tutorials for it, but are planning to look more into it.
Houdini is more like blender, the fluid is just a part of the software.

There are lots of links on their official homepage:

The apprentice edition is heavily limited in rendering size, and if I recall correctly you cannot export from it. They have a reasonably cheap indie license with less restrictions, and, if I recall correctly with export enabled.

there is a mantaflow Blender edition, I have not trie it yet.

Well, not a “blender edition” but there is a blender branch that is integrating Mantaflow.
But I really meant Mantaflow itself. Make the sim and export to blender for rendering.

Do you know where to get a Windows builds?

Thx in adavance

As far as I know, you have to build it yourself. On windows this might be a bit of a hassle. Just visit the page and have a look.
Edit: Oh, if you want to try the Blender integration you can get builds from

True, but the Houdini fluids are as good, if not better, then those of Realflow, Houdini is the king of the FX world!

Yeah, thats why i wanted the blender mantaflow ingration, because I don’t know how to make a build.

Here you can find a Windows build of Blender with Mantaflow:

Houdini Indie does permit export. The free version does not. Indie costs 200USD/year.

Houdini is probably the most powerful 3D application available. This isn’t to say that Houdini is the best tool for everything, it isn’t. But you can do about anything with Houdini, including building your own solvers from scratch using the out-of-box tools provided, without having to use the SDK.

It’s a bit faster than Realflow, and offers a lot more, even within fluid simulations. That said, it’s not easy and it’s definitely not for everyone. I would encourage you to give a solid three months with the free version before buying a license. Even with the rendering restrictions, there’s still plenty to do with Houdini. Most of my personal projects and tinkering I don’t even bother rendering. The process of building tools and sims is rewarding in it’s own right.

But give it a an honest go, and don’t be too intimidated. Over time houdini will make sense if you have the patience and time to dedicate yourself.

Houdini is a very technical tool that requires a lot of upfront construction. Realflow is much simplier, and I would say a little more realistic than Houdini.

Mantaflow has potential, just look at the mantaflow thread for a build.

I have an indie licence, I love Houdini, but modeling simple things is easier in Blender IMHO, but Houdini gets more and more cool modeling tools, it is being developed at lightning speed, and the tools work the way they should, very solid application, and the fluids are out of this world, the infinite ocean in 16 is what made me buy a licence!

If you want to try Houdini perhaps you would like to try it in combination with Blembic. You can use the free Houdini Apprentice version and export your fluid surface geometry to Blender.
Since Blembic in Houdini is a python node setup it does not fall under the restrictions of the Apprentice version. You can then import it into Blender and render it from there: