X-Particles Preferences

There are a number of global preferences which can be found in the main Cinema 4D Preferences box. These are the X-Particles preferences:


Online Updater

Check for Updates on Startup

X-Particles can check for updates to the plugin and documentation each time it is started. If you don't want it to do this, uncheck this switch.

Show Early Access Updates

If you check this switch, you will also be shown any updates available through the Early Access program. Note that any such updates are considered BETA versions and as such may not be production-ready. Only download such updates if you accept the risk that they may be less stable than the release version and that new features are subject to change.

Online licensing

Close License Seat on Exit

This switch is not available for subscription licences for X-Particles.

If this switch is checked, then when Cinema 4D exits the licence seat is closed. This enables you to use X-Particles on another machine, but that machine can only remain offline for two days. After that, it must reconnect to the licence server to revalidate the licence.

If it is unchecked, the licence seat is NOT closed when Cinema 4D exits. This will allow you to continue to use X-Particles for up to 14 days offline before needing to revalidate the licence, but of course during that time, X-Particles can only be used on the machine with the open licence.

The default setting is that this switch is checked and it is recommended that you don't change this, unless (for example) you need a longer offline period, such as when travelling.

Active Licensing

Suppose you use X-Particles at work and later at home, but you only have one licence. Previously, you would close the licence on one machine (by closing Cinema 4D) then reopen it on the other machine. If this option is enabled on both machines then when Cinema 4D is run on the second machine the open X-Particles licence on the first machine will be closed automatically and opened on the second machine, without needing any action by you. The same would be true in reverse if you then run Cinema 4D on your office machine the next day.

Please note that this option is most useful if you want to use the same licence in two locations (e.g. work and home). Do not use it if other people might use the same licence at work, since using the licence at home will automatically close it at work - where someone else might be trying to use it!


X-Particles can send you various notifications. To turn them all off, uncheck this switch. If you click the little arrow next to the 'Notifications' label, you see additional options:

You can use these switches to enable or disable specific types of notification.


When X-Particles attempts to connect to our server on startup, it will do so for the length of time (in seconds) given in this setting. If you find this results in a slight delay when Cinema starts up, you can reduce this value.


Show in Main Menu

By default X-Particles appears in the main Cinema 4D menu bar. If you don't like that, uncheck this switch. When you restart C4D, the X-Particles menu will be found in the Plugins menu (C4D R20 and earlier) or the Extensions menu (R21 and later).

System HUD

Each Emitter can display its own HUD, but if you have multiple emitters this can be inconvenient. Instead (or in addition) there is a scene-wide HUD which simply displays the total number of emitters and the total live particle count in the scene.


If checked, shows the HUD in the editor.

Text Color, Background Color, and Opacity

These settings allow you to change the colours used in the HUD and its opacity.

Horizontal Offset and Vertical Offset

These settings give the location of the HUD on the screen, expressed as percentages of the screen width and height. You can change these to alter the HUD location. (Unlike the Cinema 4D HUD, you can't drag the HUD around the screen.)

Scene Boundary Limit

Sometimes particles can get out of hand and move extremely fast, or move a very long distance away. This can cause problems with features such as the Skinner or Fluids. You can kill these particles if they exceed certain set limits.

Kill Particles Outside Limit

If the particle is farther from the world centre by more than the value in 'Boundary Limit', they will be killed.

Boundary Limit

The distance limit from the origin (world centre).

Kill if Accel. Over Limit

If the particle's acceleration is higher than the value in Acceleration Limit, it will be killed.

Acceleration Limit

The maximum acceleration the particle is permitted.

Emitter Default Values

These are a set of default values for the emitter (as opposed to particles).

Emitter Shape

The shape of the emitter when first created. This corresponds to the shape settings in the emitter; possible choices are Rectangle, Circle, Ellipse or Sphere.

Emitter Plane

The plane the emitter lies on when first created. Possible choices are the X+, X-, Y+, Y-, Z+ and Z- planes.

Emitter Icon Color

The default colour for the emitter icon in the viewport.

Emit all Frames, Start Emit, End Emit

These correspond to the settings with the same names in the emitter: please refer to the relevant Emitter page for details.

Full Lifespan, Lifespan

These correspond to the settings with the same names in the emitter: please refer to the relevant Emitter page for details.

Birthrate, Birthrate Timing

These correspond to the settings with the same names in the emitter: please refer to the relevant Emitter page for details.

Only Modifiers in Same System

This is the same setting as in the emitter's Modifiers tab. If this switch is checked, all emitters will be created with this switch already checked in the Modifiers tab.

Rewind Document on Load

If a scene is saved at some point other than the start of the animation, particles may already have been generated. Although the particles are not saved with the scene file, when the scene is reloaded the emitter will try to generate as many particles as would otherwise have been generated up to that point. This may take some time, especially if large numbers of particles are generated.

If this switch is checked and the scene file contains an emitter, the document will be automatically rewound when it is loaded, abolishing the time required to generate particles. It is recommended that you leave this switch checked. If you really don't want the rewind to happen, uncheck this switch.

Note: rewinding will only occur if there is an emitter in the scene. If there is no emitter, the switch will have no effect.

Particle Default Values

These are the default values which are set in the Emitter when it is created or in a newly-created Group object. Note that, in the case of Groups, these settings are overridden if the Group is created by an Emitter and the switch 'Use Current Display Settings' is checked.

Editor Display

The shape of the particle in the editor viewport.


The default particle colour.

Display Size Factor

Multiplier for the size of the particle.

Speed, Radius, Mass, Scale, Friction, Bounce

The default values for these six parameters.

Particle Groups

These settings affect the creation of new Groups.

Emitter Auto-Create New Group

If this switch is checked, then when a new Emitter is created it will automatically create a new Group and assign that Group to itself.

Random Colour on Creation

Whenever a new Group is created, if this switch is checked the Group colour will be generated randomly. This setting will override both the default colour value and any colour carried over from an Emitter if the Group is created by an Emitter and the switch 'Use Current Display Settings' is checked.

Minimum Colour Brightness

If a random colour is created for the new Group, it will never be below this brightness value. This prevents excessively dark colours from being generated.

Initial Mode

A Group object can be set to three possible modes - please see the Group object for details. This drop-down enables you to choose which mode new Groups are created with. The options are the same as the Group object 'Mode' setting. The default value is 'Display Only'.

Cache Defaults

These are the default settings for the cache type and cache folder. See the Cache object for more details about these options.

Cache Type

The cache type, either external to separate files, or internally to memory.

Cache Folder

The default cache folder that will be used unless the user selects a different folder in the cache object.

Alt Folder

The default alternative folder, which will be used unless a different folder is selected in the cache object.

System Object Default Values

These are default values for the System object.

Color Mode

This drop-down menu has two options:

Single Color

All new System objects will be created using the colour from the 'Object Icon Color' setting.

Random Color

Each new System object will be given a randomly-generated colour.

Object Icon Color

The colour for the new System object if 'Color Mode' is set to 'Single Color'.

Show Viewport Icon

You can turn the system object screen icon off in the System Object itself, but to turn the icon off for all new system objects, uncheck this switch.

Auto-Create Emitter

If checked, when a new System object is created, a new emitter will be created as well.

Match System Object and Emitter Icon Colors

Only available if 'Auto-Create Emitter' is checked. If so, and if this switch is checked, the emitter icon colour will be the same as the System object colour.

Note that the colour matching only applies to newly-created System objects. If you change the colour of the System object after it has been created the emitter icon colour will not be changed.

Add New XP Objects to Selected System

If this switch is checked, when a new X-Particles object is added to a scene, it will automatically be added to the correct location in a System object hierarchy IF there is a System object in the scene AND either the System object itself is selected, or an X-Particles object within a System object hierarchy is selected.

Note that this only applies to objects which appear in the object manager, not to tags, materials, etc.

Quick Tools

Icon Size

This is the size used for the icons in the Quick Tools dialog box. If you change the size, you will need to close and reopen the dialog to see the change.

XP Console

These are the default options for the X-Particles Console. These can all be changed in the console itself, but here are the default options which are used when the console is first opened.

Text Color

The colour to use in the particle data display. Only used for the actual particle data items.

Decimal Places

The number of decimal places to show in the data grid for each item. The Cinema 4D default value is three, but this is often unnecessary. You can change this to between zero and three (Cinema 4D cannot show more than three decimal places).

Time Units

For 'Age' and 'Lifespan' data items, the result can be displayed either as frames or seconds. You can change between them by using this menu.

Show Color

This drop-down menu is used to control how particle colours are shown in the data grid. There are several options; see the XP Console page for details.

Note: if you change these options when the console window is open, you won't see any change in the console because these preferences are only read when the console window is opened. To see any changes, you must close and reopen the console window.

The Factory Settings

If you want to return the preferences to the factory state, you will have to reset them manually. This table gives the factory settings:

Setting Factory value
Online Updater  
Check for Updates on Startup Enabled
Show Early Access Updates Disabled
Close License Seat on Exit Enabled
Active Licensing Disabled
Notifications Enabled
Maintenance Enabled
Promotions Enabled
Marketing Enabled
Timeout 10 (seconds)
Show in Main Menu Enabled
System HUD  
Show Disabled
Text Color Gold (RGB 255, 191, 0)
Background Color Dark Grey (RGB 89, 89, 89)
Opacity 80%
Horizontal Offset 1%
Vertical Offset 1%
Scene Boundary Limit  
Kill Particles Outside Limit Enabled
Boundary Limit 1,000,000 scene units
Kill if Accel. Over Limit Enabled
Acceleration Limit 10,000
Emitter Default Values  
Emitter Shape Rectangle
Emitter Plane Z+
Emitter Icon Color Blue (RGB 115, 209, 255)
Emit all Frames Enabled
Start Emit 0
End Emit 3 seconds (90 frames at 30 frames per second)
Full Lifespan Enabled
Lifespan 3 seconds (90 frames at 30 frames per second)
Birthrate 1000
Birthrate Timing Per Second
Only Modifiers in Same System Disabled
Rewind Document on Load Enabled
Particle Default Values  
Editor Display Dots
Color Blue (RGB 115, 209, 255)
Display Size Factor 100%
Speed 150 scene units
Radius 1 scene unit
Mass 1
Scale 1, 1, 1
Friction 20%
Bounce 100%
Particle Groups  
Emitter Auto-Create New Group Disabled
Random Color on Creation Disabled
Minimum Color Brightness 50%
Initial Mode Standard
Cache Defaults  
Cache Type External (Files)
Cache Folder User document folder
Alt Folder None (empty)
System Object Default Values  
Color Mode Single Color
Object Icon Color Blue (RGB 115, 209, 255)
Show Viewport Icon Enabled
Auto-Create Emitter Enabled
Match System Object and Emitter Icon Colors Enabled
Add New XP Objects to Selected System Disabled
Quick Tools  
Icon Size Large
XP Console Default Values  
Text Color Gold (RGB 255, 171, 23)
Decimal Places 2
Time Units Frames
Show Color As Color