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ralphymeijer
06-15-2012, 01:43 PM
Hi all,

I have a question. Recently I've been looking into the 3delight voor Maya renderer. I know it is very powerfull with displacements, motionblur and dof. Another advantage is that they offer a free license for 2 core rendering. One thing I ran into thought is that it's not super artist friendly and in order to get the most out of it shader writing and scripting is inevitable. Also documentation and tutorials are limited. This is where my question comes into play. I'm a generalist focusing on character animation and storytelling and hoping to eventually create my own short. I'm willing to put effort into learning a new tool but I wonder if this tool will really bring something extra that would improve my work or speed up rendering. Something that isn't possible or is a lot harder to do in Mental Ray. My intentions are not to become a rendering td and my understanding of scripting and shader writing is very basic.

Would you think it is worth learning 3delight or should I just stick with Mental Ray for Maya.

Thanks!

tburbage3
06-15-2012, 08:06 PM
Based on what you've said about your objectives, I think you are better off staying on the more mainstream MR path. Plenty of people on the forums using it, lots of learning material available, comes with the product and with a few render nodes if you want to set up your own little render farm.

ralphymeijer
06-18-2012, 09:46 AM
Thanks for the reply.

I pretty much felt the same but I was so impressed with the speed it renders displacements which could really useful.

mr Bob
06-19-2012, 08:58 PM
I would advise you stay away from 3delight and focus on your goal. Sadly my production experience with 3delight led me to never want to go near it again.

xcomb
06-20-2012, 07:46 AM
I would rather suggest switch to Arnold or Vray.
I am very disappointed with mentalray, been using for many years.
Renderman is great and i've used it for several years, but man it takes years to learn this rendere!
Arnold is very flexible and noise free GI i've been playing around with it, but i use beta verion which has some issues.
But as what i can say many studios are now getting to know Arnold and use it in commercials and feature films.
Don't waste time with 3delight i mean nothing bad about it, but you need to be shader writer to write stuff for it, same as renderman.
Hope that helps!
Personally i would rather stay for now with Vray. Much faster, nice quality and realistic images.

Bitter
06-21-2012, 03:17 AM
I think mental ray would be fine, this knowledge easily translates to other raytracers like Arnold or Vray without requiring extra investment.

Unfortunately there is a lot of bad information about how to use mental ray out there which can lead to poor results. (A lot of legacy workflows where artists are behind and suffer poor performance. Or simply following the advice of a webpage from 2006.) Try to stick to the nVidia mental ray forums or other trusted sources and you should be able to produce nice images quickly.

Check out the blog in my signature too for more modern techniques and examples for mental ray. We even have a few nice tools like the fgshooter for easy flicker-free animation with Final Gathering.

CHRiTTeR
06-22-2012, 02:14 PM
try vray, you wont regret it

ralphymeijer
06-22-2012, 09:40 PM
Thanks for the replies guys. After you mentioned Arnold I tried to google it but it seems like it's not yet commercially available for smaller companies or individual artists. Is that correct? I looked at some comparison renders and I was really impressed with the speed it renders. It is notably faster than Mental Ray. The only thing I read is that it doesn't support aov's. Which is quite useful in post. Anyway if it's not available I don't have to worry about it anyway. I heard a lot of good stories about Vray. Is vray faster than Mental Ray?

Cheers!

CHRiTTeR
06-24-2012, 10:52 PM
I heard a lot of good stories about Vray. Is vray faster than Mental Ray?

Cheers!

In my experience, yes

Panupat
07-08-2012, 03:51 PM
I have seen amazing renders with 3delight and really wish I could do them. But after trying to use it for 2 years, I feel like trying to learn 3delight was . . . not . . . fun. The hardest part is how to find learning resources. There are scarcely any at all.

If you're in a studio with 3delight experts to guide you, then I suppose it wouldn't be so bad. Alone, however, you will be for the most part stuck with a few renderman books. Which seriously, I have scripted a bunch of my own tools with Python and PyQt and I still find those books ponderous. That, and 3delight own documentations which doesn't explain how to use them, only what they are.

I just started using vray recently and it's such a delight. Without the number 3. Can't compare it to mentalray, but compare to 3delight, vray seems slower in a lot of respect. But at least I no longer have to sit down for days trying to figure stuff out . . . and even more time trying to teach other light artists to do the stuff I learned. V-ray just simply works.

molgamus
07-13-2012, 08:42 PM
I've used 3Delight in production and I think it's a great renderer to work with. And I do agree that it is most efficient when using shaders that you've written yourself. But 3Delight does support all the maya shaders and lights and will work right out of the box. Don't forget that you may use it for free (limited to 2 cores) and test it out, and use the images for commercial use.

mr Bob
07-13-2012, 11:41 PM
So have things improved ? When did they implement the ability to render a volume primitive or metaballs.

b

kmest
07-30-2012, 04:12 PM
In my own experience, 3Delight is a great engine.Very fast with great quality. The workflow on the other hand, is very slow and hard compared to Vray-mentalray. Raytracing is a little bit of problem since its a REYES Engine but you can easily cheat with it. This is somehow the issue with all the Renderman based engines; Long hours to setup and learn, but in the end, the result and speed is amazing, like a reward ;)

But if you want to quickly setup a nice picture with reasonable speed, and usefull tutorials, Use Vray or MR. and you can always work a little extra on the compositing with passes to get a much better quality

molgamus
08-17-2012, 03:01 PM
I don't know how things was before, but I tested to render particles as blobbys with success. But I believe you are correct regarding volumume primitives. 3Delight was not able to render a Maya Fluid I created. But I think you could get away with using a different renderer for your fluids and composite the result.

mr Bob
08-22-2012, 04:40 AM
I don't know how things was before, but I tested to render particles as blobbys with success. But I believe you are correct regarding volumume primitives. 3Delight was not able to render a Maya Fluid I created. But I think you could get away with using a different renderer for your fluids and composite the result.

That just creates pointless extra work when other renderers work without the hassle.

molgamus
08-22-2012, 12:33 PM
Seems like PRMan can render Maya fluids. Possibly 3Delight can too.

kmest
08-22-2012, 03:57 PM
tried it on Maya20163 right now and NO it cant render Fluids.not yet

molgamus
08-22-2012, 05:15 PM
Found this in the docs for 3DelightForMaya 6.0:
http://www.3delight.com/en/uploads/docs/3dfm/3dfm_29.html

I guess the REYES algorithm isn't the most suitable for fluids and volumetrics and that is why larger facilities, ILM and such, use proprietary volumetric renderers. I guess ILM would use PRMan if it was practical, after all they have unlimited licenses.

rendermaniac
08-23-2012, 03:31 PM
prman 15 onwards is pretty good with volumetrics.

3delight is quite behind prman in several areas - volumetrics being the biggest difference. It's also has poorer struct support and if you want to do any plausible shading you will have to write it all yourself.

molgamus
08-23-2012, 03:46 PM
If understand it all correctly the routine introduced in PRMan 15 is to create a box or a cone that at render time is filled with blobbies that simulate volumetrics? I guess that you could write your own DSO to do it in 3Delight, but it would of course require you to write your own DSO. Your point is valid that 3Delight does not support it out of the box, but I think it's capable of rendering the same effects.

On a related note, where can you read up on getting started with writing DSO's?

rendermaniac
08-24-2012, 07:07 AM
Blobbies are just the RIB representation. In the renderer it builds a 3D microvoxel grid (like Mantra does) in much the same way as 2D grids work in normal REYES. This also means that intersecting volumes are handled by the renderer without you caring about it, and it has shading rate controls etc.

3delight does have some API which is supposed to be used for volumes, but I have never used it and it does't look particularly easy to use. It also doesn't come working out of the box:

http://www.3delight.com/en/uploads/docs/3delight/3delight_73.html#SEC283

Simon

If understand it all correctly the routine introduced in PRMan 15 is to create a box or a cone that at render time is filled with blobbies that simulate volumetrics? I guess that you could write your own DSO to do it in 3Delight, but it would of course require you to write your own DSO. Your point is valid that 3Delight does not support it out of the box, but I think it's capable of rendering the same effects.

On a related note, where can you read up on getting started with writing DSO's?

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