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DominikSusmel
08-10-2004, 03:27 AM
August 9, 2004

Pixar is pleased to unveil RenderMan® for Maya®, a new rendering solution based on Pixar's award-winning rendering technology. RenderMan for Maya brings the power of RenderMan to new audiences with this easy to use plug-in, available at the low price of $995.



Easy to use Power

RenderMan for Maya enjoys complete integration with Maya®. Just switch your renderer to “RenderMan” and automatically render everything in your Maya scene, including Maya materials, Maya particles, and Maya fur.

Provides a Select Set of Features

RenderMan for Maya is a perfect fit for small studios who covet movie-quality images but do not require the premium features of RenderMan Pro Server. The software has been streamlined for ease of use, giving Maya users one-click access to Pixar's core rendering technology, the PhotoRealistic RenderMan renderer.





“Pixar and Alias have a long standing tradition cemented by our mutual customers, who have created the most compelling and successful films using our combined technologies,” said Bob Bennett, general manager of product management at Alias. “The availability of an affordable integrated rendering solution from Pixar will make many Maya artists happy. We're confident that users will love how the engineers at Pixar took advantage of Maya's unified rendering interface. Now the proven power and stability of PRMan is even more accessible to Maya artists.” Entering beta testing soon, RenderMan for Maya will be available on computers running Mac OS X or Windows XP.






Source: https://renderman.pixar.com/




It looks like Pixar tries to popularize it's PRMan via new entry level product. Can't wait to see what kind of limitations are there in contrast to Pro Server version in combo with RAT. This one is an integrated solution not like RAT+Pro Server...
PRMan for begginers :)

Jozvex
08-10-2004, 03:36 AM
The announcements from Siggraph don't stop do they!

What's next? A Cinema4D plugin for Photoshop??

Phearielord
08-10-2004, 03:39 AM
mmm....seems like the growing popularity of mental ray got them a bit worried!
which is fair enough :)
cant say if is going to be a good or bad thing until i have more info.......but if it's not too stripped down, it might be pretty cool....

in any event, this is cool news!!



you gotta love the news that comes out of Siggraph! :D

Byla
08-10-2004, 05:46 AM
The announcements from Siggraph don't stop do they!

What's next? A Cinema4D plugin for Photoshop??
Cinema 4d plugin 4 photoshop... eeee, what?:shrug:

Jozvex
08-10-2004, 06:03 AM
It was just the first crazy announcement I could think of.

:)

Byla
08-10-2004, 06:14 AM
you mean, direct 3d model export to photoshop :thumbsup:

Couse cinema can allready export render images with layers to pds files... multipass.

lestdog
08-10-2004, 08:17 AM
if you can still write your own shaders this should be awesome. A dream come true.

ilasolomon
08-10-2004, 09:34 AM
couldn't RENDERMAN ARTIST TOOL do the job? or maybe this is a competition with Mental Image which is going to hand over all major commercial 3d application rendering engines?

NUKE-CG
08-10-2004, 11:14 AM
Well, I could see this coming. Mental Images for the past few years have been giving 3D software makers offers to bundle their renderer in, and this pressure I assume is affecting profit and upcoming adoption of renderman.

I look forward to seeing some features and comparison chart, and the odd screenshot of the editors would be much appreciated too Pixar ;)

lestdog
08-10-2004, 01:35 PM
couldn't RENDERMAN ARTIST TOOL do the job? or maybe this is a competition with Mental Image which is going to hand over all major commercial 3d application rendering engines?

Yes but it's not integrated into maya like mental ray, if I'm reading this correctly, this new renderman will work in a more seemless fasion like MR. This would be great for SubD users since MR still dosent support SUBd's 100 percent.

Ckerr812
08-10-2004, 01:54 PM
RAT is not compatible with Maya shading networks, MayaFur, etc..

The philosophy of RAT was to do you modeling and animation in Maya, and everything else you would use RAT and renderman for.

This means that we can use Rendermans superior motion blur, and speed all in Maya and it's CHEAP! Which is the best of all!

This is awsome....best news out of siggraph so far.

mental
08-10-2004, 02:04 PM
i wonder what the NURBS performance will be like?

Lyr
08-10-2004, 02:05 PM
:eek: Ok I'll be getting this, too damn cool. The speed and stability of Prman are simply unmatched.

TheGreenGiant
08-10-2004, 02:09 PM
hmm. interesting. How are the rendering licenses/processor costs split though? We all know MR is exhorbitant. so it this going to be better?

onlooker
08-10-2004, 02:15 PM
I have to start a list of all the great new tools I'll be needing from SIGGRAPH then trim off the excess. This one won't be trimmed. :buttrock:

balistic
08-10-2004, 03:41 PM
you mean, direct 3d model export to photoshop :thumbsup:

Corel Photo-Paint has had 3D DXF import since forever.

Not that I've ever found a use for it.

ThomasMahler
08-10-2004, 03:49 PM
G R E A T News!

Seems that we Maya users finally get some decent renderers - Vray, Final Render, Renderman integrated into Maya... hell, yes! :)

Mudvin
08-10-2004, 04:11 PM
Yes but it's not integrated into maya like mental ray, if I'm reading this correctly, this new renderman will work in a more seemless fasion like MR. This would be great for SubD users since MR still dosent support SUBd's 100 percent.

Hope they will support some custom attributes like edge/vertex creases, since Maya subdivs is a mockery on subdivision surfaces at all with their "sharp-mid-smooth" creases... :banghead:

Daniel-B
08-10-2004, 04:51 PM
Humm, I've never used Renderman. Does it's motion blur render faster? Cause mental ray's motion blur takes a while to render.

tjnyc
08-10-2004, 04:56 PM
PRMAN's Motion Blur is the best in the business. No one is able to touch PRMAN when it comes to Motion Blur, or fast sub-pixel displacement for that matter.

Lyr
08-10-2004, 04:58 PM
Motion blur in PRman is insanely fast. Much faster than anything else out on the market. Same with displacements.

cold_fusion
08-10-2004, 05:05 PM
that is so pretty cool, renderman rulz:buttrock:

shehbahn
08-10-2004, 05:23 PM
i have -not- seen the software yet so take this with a large pinch of salt, but i am guessing that this integration is basically a carbon copy of the MR plugin. in other words, all you get is support for Maya features and nothing else, which is a very watered down version from RAT/MToR/Slim (except fur / hair maybe, for the few people who actually used it).

DominikSusmel
08-10-2004, 05:33 PM
I believe it will be something like this in contrast to RAT:

Will bring:
=================================
- Renderer which comforms to Maya API for Renderer plugins (like MR, Vector, Vray and FR soon etc..)
- All Maya Render Nodes which we have now in Maya will be made as custom shaders for PRMan as to seamlesly (can't spell) render any existing scene file
- Possibility to attach custom shaders to material and/or object (precompiled or as source for further compilation)
- Custom attributes for Lights

Will not bring:
=================================
- SLIM or anything like it, since shading groups will be controled from within maya through Hypershade
- ALFRED
- Command line rendering (quite possibly)
- RIBBox or any kind of RiProcudural (maybe we get some pre-packgaged)

So, in other words we will get MTOR scaled down with a PRMan as DLL (or SO if you're on Linux) not as an exe..without SLIM, ALFRED, IT and other stuff..it's quite possible we will get some form of IRMA...but hey, I'm guessing here already at large :)

lestdog
08-10-2004, 05:38 PM
i have -not- seen the software yet so take this with a large pinch of salt, but i am guessing that this integration is basically a carbon copy of the MR plugin. in other words, all you get is support for Maya features and nothing else, which is a very watered down version from RAT/MToR/Slim (except fur / hair maybe, for the few people who actually used it).Thats why its called renderman for maya. Did you expect your renderman for maya to support lightwave, xsi, etc.? It's called Renderman for maya 1.0 . And a carbon copy of MR? The only thing that will make or break this for me is if you can use renderman shaders. You can use MR shaders with MR so I don't see why they would limit that on this renderer.

mestela
08-10-2004, 06:17 PM
surprised no-one's mentioned mayaman, its offered the full shader/light translation for a few years now:

http://www.animallogic.com/research/mayaman/

This looks to remove the need for mayaman completely, can't make animal logic very happy...

tjnyc
08-10-2004, 06:40 PM
surprised no-one's mentioned mayaman, its offered the full shader/light translation for a few years now:

http://www.animallogic.com/research/mayaman/

This looks to remove the need for mayaman completely, can't make animal logic very happy...
Not neccessarily, the AIR Renderer runs ideal with Mayaman, and with it in a renderfarm it would still most likely remain a cheaper Renderman solution than Pixar's Renderman for Maya.

Backenbotten
08-10-2004, 07:14 PM
First the Kaydara Purchase by AW, then the XSI price drop, and now this; Discreet will find an even harder time keeping their price tag where it is i believe. I believe that Pixar releasing the Renderman plugin for Maya at that very attractive price, has a "political" significance for film/broadcast users. We can't be sure (I'm just speculating) if some of their intention is to increase partnership with AW, not release the plugin for other packages, and become the "one" choice for film/broadcast work.

Kudos to discreet though for including the Mental Ray with Max, and making it so (relatively) easy to use. However, if I had known this 6 months ago, I guess I would have taken the time to learn Maya; however I didn't and went with Max; which is about 133% as expensive as Maya Complete and the Renderman pluginhttp://cgtalk.com/images/smilies/sad.gif. As for now I kind of regret that - but anyway the job gets done.

shehbahn
08-10-2004, 08:40 PM
>Did you expect your renderman for maya to support lightwave, xsi, etc.?

Maya is very limited in terms of shading & rendering. RAT adds many tools to the RIB generation core, and i am guessing that without them, it will make it very hard to tap into the power and flexibility of the renderer.

shingo
08-10-2004, 09:20 PM
>Did you expect your renderman for maya to support lightwave, xsi, etc.?

Maya is very limited in terms of shading & rendering. RAT adds many tools to the RIB generation core, and i am guessing that without them, it will make it very hard to tap into the power and flexibility of the renderer.
This is probably a ploy to educate a wider market on Prman, which by and large, is a pretty complexed renderer to use and implement. Get people used to it which will then garner greater demand for it. Mental Images have been pretty successful it seems, in becomming the standard so PIXAR is upping the ante.

If indeed the plug-in is limited or the integration less than complete. it may have the reverse effect.

kmest
08-10-2004, 10:45 PM
what was wrong with the PRMAN?
but good news.although there is a problem with maya render that even mental ray and turtle have,there are jagged in some edges when you render it to pal/upper field.and when i render it with PRMAN,all edges are smooth,i hope i dont see this problem with this one(and if i'm wrong and anyone has a solution,please tell me and save me)

Aneks
08-10-2004, 11:03 PM
I am very happy and supprised by this announcment . Is it just me or do they seem to be offering basically the same thing as Mayaman except it is developed by Pixar. Mayaman is very very good ! Basically offering an *almost* seemless transition from your maya scene to any .rib compliant renderer. ir Air Prman, entropy :chuckle....

In terms of extra features contained in PRman both RAT and Mayaman allow you to access things way beyond the default shader options and utilities in Maya. Granted RAT has slim which is designed for this but Mayaman has a custom shader node which can be used for jsut about anything as well as having the ability to add extra features to lights and objects. Either way one could always just use ribbox's to add in any groovy shader code that they wanted !!

Then again maybe I'm biased towards mayaman !!!

shehbahn
08-10-2004, 11:22 PM
>This is probably a ploy to educate a wider market on Prman

probably - i am not saying it is a bad thing, just curious to find out what kind of market there is for this, other than students and hobbyists.

Ckerr812
08-10-2004, 11:59 PM
>This is probably a ploy to educate a wider market on Prman

probably - i am not saying it is a bad thing, just curious to find out what kind of market there is for this, other than students and hobbyists.
What are you talking about...Not every studio (hardly any except the big boys) have teams of renderman shader writers.

It's aimed at the smaller studios that don't have teams of R and D and shader programmers....

As for the talk about Mayaman.... it's ok, but after you figure you buy mayaman for 2 grand....then have to buy the prman render on top of that it's a whole lot more money your spending.

This could be the best thing to happen to maya in a long time, have to see how well it's implemeted....as for being compatible with maya sub D's...I guarentee it won't, but that's just a guess.

I am going to buy this when it comes out, anyone that uses motion blur on a regular basis would want to buy this....

Lyr
08-11-2004, 12:11 AM
I am going to buy this when it comes out, anyone that uses motion blur on a regular basis would want to buy this....
Or if you use displacements on your models, or if you want to use both displacement AND motion blur on your scenes and live to see the end of the render.

shehbahn
08-11-2004, 01:43 AM
>I am going to buy this when it comes out,

by all means share your experiences with us then :)

ristopuukko
08-11-2004, 05:11 AM
Shouldn't we wait for a feature list before judging ?

/r

playmesumch00ns
08-11-2004, 07:49 AM
Nah! Let's just declare it the best thing since sliced bread/condemn it to hell (delete as appropriate) based on guesswork, hearsay and prejudice! That's the CGTalk way! :)

Array
08-11-2004, 10:00 AM
I'm surprised that so many people here are dissatisfied with Mental Ray. :shrug: If you cant get a good result in that, I doubt that PRMan will make your life any easier either, unless of course you are a pro with SL.

Anyways, this is great news. Anything that keeps the Renderman standard on the tips of people's toungs is fine by me!

Nemoid
08-11-2004, 11:27 AM
Great news! first Kaydara aquisition, then a Pixar renderman version dedicated for Maya.Very good for a small studio wich wants to do high production-like renderings and products. sub pixel displacement is very good in Renderan, and the engine itself has many advantages in terms ofminimum amount of geometry and best results.

In this period, Alias seem to want to improve their app adding pieces coming from other companies, rather than develop Maya into a powerful way to give it more intuitiveness and a faster workflow as it is out of the box.

They lost the possibility to have a great release with 6.0 but they added these tools through other apps.

Array
08-11-2004, 11:29 AM
In this period, Alias seem to want to improve their app adding pieces coming from other companies, rather than develop Maya into a powerful way to give it more intuitiveness and a faster workflow as it is out of the box.

Haha, where have we seen that before?

CIM
08-11-2004, 11:52 AM
Great news! first Kaydara aquisition, then a Pixar renderman version dedicated for Maya.Very good for a small studio wich wants to do high production-like renderings and products. sub pixel displacement is very good in Renderan, and the engine itself has many advantages in terms ofminimum amount of geometry and best results.

In this period, Alias seem to want to improve their app adding pieces coming from other companies, rather than develop Maya into a powerful way to give it more intuitiveness and a faster workflow as it is out of the box.

They lost the possibility to have a great release with 6.0 but they added these tools through other apps.

What are you talking about? Are you somehow predicting the future of what Alias will do with the acquisition of Kaydara? Oh, and Pixar owns and develops Renderman/PRMan, not Alias. Since when does Maya come with Renderman/PRMan? I see mental ray in there. :rolleyes:

maninflash
08-11-2004, 12:06 PM
I'm surprised that so many people here are dissatisfied with Mental Ray. :shrug: If you cant get a good result in that, I doubt that PRMan will make your life any easier either, unless of course you are a pro with SL.

Anyways, this is great news. Anything that keeps the Renderman standard on the tips of people's toungs is fine by me!
Mental Ray is a decent renderer in many ways but comes short where it counts, Sub-Ds! For one, it only renders Sub-D models that are fully quads, and then, even when you have a clean model, it can't produce fully round edges. And as you know, Sub-Ds are becoming industry standard for character animation, and trying to render your SubD character in Maya Software and everything else in MRay is not really productive, althou it could work if you are a good compositor.

Mental Ray is very powerful in rendering NURBS thou and also it's GI and Final Gather lighting, if you have the extra CPU/Hour to burn.

mestela
08-11-2004, 12:31 PM
Hopefully pixar will include arbitrary outputs in their plugin; that was one of the great things I learned in my short play with PRman, something still missing from mentalray for maya if memory serves me right...

The simple joy of being able to split out seperate diffuse, spec, normal, shadow, depth, uv, sss etc.. with almost no time penalty is something I really wanna see more widespread!

Nemoid
08-11-2004, 12:33 PM
What are you talking about? Are you somehow predicting the future of what Alias will do with the acquisition of Kaydara? Oh, and Pixar owns and develops Renderman/PRMan, not Alias. Since when does Maya come with Renderman/PRMan? I see mental ray in there. :rolleyes:
Nope i'm only trying to understand better the Alias policy in this period. true that Pixar owns renderman, but a dedicated Maya version makes me think alot.

I like more the recent Avid policy in developing the app more aggressively for one complete and powerful app, rather than a bunch of different apps wich get your job done - very very well, however.

Renderman is however THE rendering engine so far, so, such a news is way cool for Maya.

mustique
08-11-2004, 01:46 PM
I whished the anouncement site had mor info.

I've never used renderman. Only thing I now is its speed, versatility, AA, displacement and Motion blur power that's sad to be the best available. There's a renderman site with lots of theory that looks like rocket science to me and the new plugin would probably no use to me if it wouldn't come with a wide set of sweet renderman shaders. And what about paint fx, light-fog, optical effects, fluid compatibility etc... No idea at all.

guess I'll have to wait and see.

Lyr
08-11-2004, 03:40 PM
Nope i'm only trying to understand better the Alias policy in this period. true that Pixar owns renderman, but a dedicated Maya version makes me think alot.


All there is to understand about this Alias "policy" (even though it's a pixar product?:rolleyes: ) is that MOST of pixars customers use Prman with Maya and they want to better serve thier customers. It's in the damn press release.

Necropolis
08-11-2004, 09:23 PM
I got to say I am a little disappointed with some of the past posts. Let's give them a chance to give us details about what this product is before we start hailing it as the next coming of Christ or the Apocalypse. At the very least we should all see this as a very positive move for Pixar. You can basically get two very exciting facts from the press release. The first is that Pixar is digging into the Maya Rendering API. This means only good things for the future of PRman and Maya integration. Whether that is a new bridge through the new Renderman for Maya style pulgins, or further integration between RAT and Maya. The second is that we can see them working on a Maya to Renderman bridge for OS X. Again that is great news as it broadens the user base and the choices that PRMan users have. Even if this specific new product isn't for you or your company. Maya users and PRman users should be excited to see the direction in which integration between the two companies products is headed.

Necropolis

RobertoO
08-11-2004, 09:31 PM
I think that renderman for maya should offer more immediate benefits to small studios and single users than mental ray for maya. By that I mean that out the box, Mental Ray for Maya doesn't solve many of the day to day issues that made the Maya renderer awkward under tight deadlines.

Features such as totally automatic smooth tesselation, totally automatic sub-pixel displacement, fast motion blur, fast dof, super fast AA, easy to use procedurals, small memory usage, 100% reliability etc etc are things that are great for all types of users. ie they aren't niche features. In many of these areas Mental Ray is still tricky to get right and even when optimised usually much slower and more memory intensive than PRMan.

The company I work for did several months of testing with MRFM before going with PRMan, and we came to the conclusion that even though the integration was not as tight, PRMAn was worth the extra effort for the points listed above. Now if Pixar do a great job of their plugin (which is a big task) and do indeed tighten that integration to a similar level as MR - everyone gets the best of both worlds.

On the other hand the raw raytracing/GI speed of MR is certainly one area where MR has an advantage over PRMan - especially for single users. This is because Pixar have implemented the raytracing in PRMan with a view to rendering their own super complex scenes. The raytracing operates using a complex multiresolution cache that allows raytracing of millions of displaced primitives. There's even a research paper knocking about on the internet where a pixar employee tested GI in a scene from monsters inc - totaling 237 million unique triangles, 52 million photons - all of which used less than 600mb of ram. I doubt any other renderer on the market could match that kind of performance..

That kind of flexibility comes at a slight speed penalty, and many users will never require that level of performance. So I imagine that when renderman for maya gets released there wil be many posts titled "GI in renderman sucks, mental ray/brazil/turtle is way faster" (followed by a 512x512 picture of a cornell box:-). Maybe Pixar will implement a quicker, more traditional (and restrictive) raytracing system as an alternative to the present system should renderman for maya users represent a significant chunk of thier revenue. I guess it just depends on how many people buy the plugin.

Anyway it used to be that in the right hands PRMan was a great renderer, that'll always be the case, just now there's gonna be way more hands (which has to be a good thing).

R

kiaran
08-12-2004, 02:52 AM
The simple joy of being able to split out seperate diffuse, spec, normal, shadow, depth, uv, sss etc.. with almost no time penalty is something I really wanna see more widespread!


I would LOVE that. This would be SUCH a nice feature.

onlooker
08-12-2004, 03:06 AM
I got to say I am a little disappointed with some of the past posts. Let's give them a chance to give us details about what this product is before we start hailing it as the next coming of Christ or the Apocalypse. At the very least we should all see this as a very positive move for Pixar. You can basically get two very exciting facts from the press release. The first is that Pixar is digging into the Maya Rendering API. This means only good things for the future of PRman and Maya integration. Whether that is a new bridge through the new Renderman for Maya style pulgins, or further integration between RAT and Maya. The second is that we can see them working on a Maya to Renderman bridge for OS X. Again that is great news as it broadens the user base and the choices that PRMan users have. Even if this specific new product isn't for you or your company. Maya users and PRman users should be excited to see the direction in which integration between the two companies products is headed.

Necropolis

Hey that's a great post buddy. And I totally agree. Well said. :thumbsup:

colinbear
08-12-2004, 12:35 PM
necropolis, i agree. we'll have to wait and see to get a better understanding of who this plugin will benefit and the options that it might offer before we can say one way or the other that this is a good/bad thing
integration of an outside renderer such as this is a notoriously difficult task. in some ways i think that there will always be a trade off in terms of integration vs power. i guess what i mean is the more transparent prman becomes in your maya setup, the less of its power features can be made available.
the features you can transparently integrate are the ones that have an equivalent in maya, like sub-d support, better renders of displaced geometry and motion-blur etc. and the hard ones to integrate are (as mentioned before) creasing edges for sub-d's, and things like non-parallel perspective, custom lens shaders, and shader message passing.
if all this plugin does is get more people rendering with renderman, then perhaps thats a good thing. if it goes further than this and allows you to get in there and hack a bit of rib and integrate custom shaders etc then it'll be well worth the cost.

just some parting thoughts ...

i wonder if youll have to txmake your textures prior to rendering? or will they perhaps include native support for prman tiff/tex files within maya.

will the prman option add another bucket-load of standard renderman attributes to maya dag nodes as with all the mi* attributes or will it be a bit smarter and infer as many as it can from the maya attributes that already exist?

will they include some good 'basic' renderman documentation, explaining things like eye-splits, displacement bounds etc in such a way as to educate new prman users rather than scare them away.

RobertoO
08-12-2004, 05:26 PM
will they include some good 'basic' renderman documentation, explaining things like eye-splits, displacement bounds etc in such a way as to educate new prman users rather than scare them away.
Its worth noting that version 12 has totally eliminated eyesplits! check out the 12 feature list at the pixar site.

R

onlooker
08-12-2004, 07:59 PM
I just got this from the RenderMan forums at Pixar.

Not much experience with Renderman but I did talk to the Pixar folks at Siggraph today. Basically renderman for maya just uses all the existing hypershade nodes but adds attributes to some, adds attributes to lights, and then of course has its own render globals section. So.... like mental ray, upon rendering all the maya render nodes are converted to renderman and then render takes place.... there is no RIB.... or anything like that.


I'm not convinced this is what we all would have hoped for.

I think I may look into RenderMan Artist Tools and RenderMan Pro Server for the edu price while I still can. I hope they finish, and release the artist tools for OS X while I still have some money. :hmm:

dstripinis
08-12-2004, 08:37 PM
I was talking with the folks at the Pixar booth quite a bit about this yesterday.

Some specifics I asked about:
First, it won't even be in beta till october, with release planned by the end of the year. Also, there likely will not be a linux version, only win and OSX.

It doesn't support RIB in/out, nor Renderman procedural objects.

It does support Maya Fur, even with Deep Shadows, which is sweet.

Maya Sub Ds are handled as Renderman SubDs.



The main gist I got is it provides a way for a small studio or single end user to quickly and easily use renderman, without the cost and complexity of using MToR. Overall, I think it's a pretty swell deal for $1K. It would be better if it came in da box a la mental ray, but it's still rather affordable.

leuey
08-12-2004, 08:41 PM
Hmmm, sounds like it's pretty much what I'd want. I've used RAT before and prefer hypershade, and it makes more sense to me to use the same tool (hypershade) for whatever renderer you're using. I would be -very- surprised if you couldn't created a shader library of prman specific shaders or import various shaders (you can w/ MR). And I would think that the scene would be converted to a RIB at some point - I mean, it has to be for PRMan to render it, right? (I could be wrong about this). You may not be able to manually manipulate the RIB, but that's not something I would ever do anyway. I'm more interested in the out of box features (mo blur, tesselation, displacement, speed..) than I am in the flexibility of a RIB - especially w/ my lack of technical knowledge of PRMan....

The big question is do you have to get pro-server to render across a render farm? B/c if that's the case the cost is still pretty darn high, it would be nice if there was a stripped down network render node for a grand or something of that nature that worked w/ RenderPal (or something similar)

best,

Greg



I just got this from the RenderMan forums at Pixar.



I'm not convinced this is what we all would have hoped for.

I think I may look into RenderMan Artist Tools and RenderMan Pro Server for the edu price while I still can. I hope they finish, and release the artist tools for OS X while I still have some money. :hmm:

Ckerr812
08-12-2004, 08:54 PM
Maya Sub Ds are handled as Renderman SubDs.

Seriously? They said that..wow...how did they manage that...not even Mayaman could do that.

That's worth 1G right there.

This is sounding better and better all the time.

and leuey, my sentiments exactly, it's impossible for a small studio to use renderman now a days, unless they have a genuis at the helm working 18 hour days.

How it works with a render farm setup will be very interesting to find out as well.

shehbahn
08-12-2004, 09:04 PM
>And I would think that the scene would be converted to a RIB at some point - I mean, it has to be for PRMan to render it, right?

not exactly : in this case, the renderer is directly integrated as a part of the Maya software (as a DLL) and communicates directly with it, bypassing the rib file stage (hence the "no procedurals / no DSO" part of the statement). so there's still "conversion" of the maya scene graph into something more adequate for rendering (namely RI specification), but it's not stored on file.

the low price point ($1k - i initially thought it would be in the $3k range) will probably make this interesting for people who do not use render farms and want an alternative to ray-tracers. it's still watered down compared to RAT, but it probably has its place in the smaller shops.

dstripinis
08-12-2004, 09:59 PM
There is no network rendering. Batch rendering locally yes. Network - no.

Oh, and it's single proc.

Necropolis
08-12-2004, 10:15 PM
David if you would be so kind could you possibly see if you can squeeze some info from the Pixar people for me? I am curious if they will say anything about whether or not the integration we are seeing for the Renderman for Maya plug-in will see its way into RAT in the near future. For that matter with this new plug-in are they changing RAT in any way or just going to keep it plugging along as it is?

Necropolis

dstripinis
08-12-2004, 11:13 PM
I'm not going back to the show - so I can't get anymore info.

But they said they are meant as seperate and distinct products.

Necropolis
08-13-2004, 12:02 AM
Thanks for the info. I knew there would remain distinct products. I was just curious if they were mentioning if some of the inegration in the Renderman for Maya plug-in was going to find its way to RAT any time soon. It would sweet if you could use Hypershade for all of your Slim functions. I definatly am going to stick with RAT, and was not planning on straying from that. I was just wondering if they were saying anything about changes to RAT's integration yet. But since you aren't going back, and I am not there. I guess I will have to wait and see.

Necropolis

NUKE-CG
08-13-2004, 04:13 AM
Boy.. three years ago if someone said you could have Maya Complete, mental Ray and PR Renderman rendering solutions for $3000 you would have been laughed at for hours.

For a "1.0" this sounds pretty good and overall will boost mental Images, and indirectly Alias, to step up and improve their offerings even more. This is great news for individuals and small studios which don't require excessive control and just want to bang out quality short scenes.

Jozvex
08-13-2004, 04:20 AM
*What NUKE-CG said only in a sexier less-annoying accent*

NUKE-CG
08-13-2004, 04:51 AM
The ladies love it, nuff' said.

malducin
08-13-2004, 05:46 AM
I was just curious if they were mentioning if some of the inegration in the Renderman for Maya plug-in was going to find its way to RAT any time soon. It would sweet if you could use Hypershade for all of your Slim functions. I definatly am going to stick with RAT, and was not planning on straying from that. I was just wondering if they were saying anything about changes to RAT's integration yet.
No.

At the Pixar user group meeting they mentioned they would be totally separate. Renderman for Maya is meant to be strightforward to use so you don't have to worry about anything. As such you won't have access to RIB streams or have to worry about shaders. My take on it was not really a direct response to mental Ray (that's what PRMan is directly competing with), but with other high quality solutions like V-Ray and Brazil on Max.

RAT will remain separate and geared towards technical users which require all the power and functionality of RenderMan.

mustique
08-13-2004, 01:33 PM
...

Oh, and it's single proc.

:sad: :cry:

TheWraith
08-13-2004, 02:47 PM
man, finally maya is getting a nice variety of renderers to choose from. with turtle, final render, renderman, mental ray and i think even vray all on the horizon or here already, it's good to be a maya user. i always hated that max had so many nice renderers to choose from and maya users didn't have a lot of choices.

Necropolis
08-13-2004, 05:14 PM
Thanks for the info Malducin!

enygma
08-13-2004, 05:44 PM
there likely will not be a linux version, only win and OSX.
This angers me greatly... :sad:

Maybe it's time for me to get a G5

Andreyev
08-13-2004, 07:02 PM
whan I just started using RAT, I thought about it's very unsuitable interface, complicated shader system, non-displaying textures at the viewports and so on... But last two days I began to understand that prman is the best render that I ever used. It just need to be learned a bit before you can understand that :-)

And a renderman without SLIM - what it will be?.. Just another renderer IMHO. But motion blur and displaicement with maya shaders (which are not very flexib;e, I think) - maybe these functions will save new prman.

Anyway, I'm so excited last two days - Alias, Kaydara, Pixar, Siggraoh (I wish I could go there someday :-)).... I'm so happy that I'm using Maya instead of MAX, from which I switched 1 year ago!! We live in a gold times of 3D and CG now, I think. Very cooollll :bounce:

rock
08-13-2004, 07:41 PM
man, finally maya is getting a nice variety of renderers to choose from. with turtle, final render, renderman, mental ray and i think even vray all on the horizon or here already, it's good to be a maya user. i always hated that max had so many nice renderers to choose from and maya users didn't have a lot of choices.It's nice but were we to look at it objectively, every new choice of Maya renderers (Mental Ray, Vray, Renderman, Turtle, Final Renderer) thus far are not 100% integrated - fluids, hair, paintfx, ngons, ipr, shaders and materials consistencies, lighting consistency and speed consistency. I rather have 2 renderers with 100% integration than 100 renderers at 2% integration. :)

lestdog
08-13-2004, 10:16 PM
It's nice but were we to look at it objectively, every new choice of Maya renderers (Mental Ray, Vray, Renderman, Turtle, Final Renderer) thus far are not 100% integrated - fluids, hair, paintfx, ngons, ipr, shaders and materials consistencies, lighting consistency and speed consistency. I rather have 2 renderers with 100% integration than 100 renderers at 2% integration. :)

Well we are close then right? MR is about 80 to 90 percent integrated and this new Renderman looks about the same hopefully.

beaker
08-14-2004, 01:42 AM
It does include support for Prman shaders like you get in MR for maya. Only thing is you have to have them already compiled. Raw .sl files can't be used. That feature was broken on the osx version the guy demoing it had so I couldn't see how much of the shader could be altered inside the maya hypershade.

ristopuukko
08-16-2004, 06:04 AM
Well if you can't use *.sl's then hopefully RMan for Maya comes with the shader - compiler

anderslanglands
08-16-2004, 10:37 AM
Prbably will come with shader compiler

mummey
08-16-2004, 10:43 AM
Well if you can't use *.sl's then hopefully RMan for Maya comes with the shader - compiler

That's the point of RMan for Maya. ITs a low-to-mid end solution where you are not supposed to need a shader compiler. If you wanted that ability you need PRMan. If you want to intereact with the shaders via gui as well you need RAT.

RMan for Maya (needs better acronym, MRM anyone?) is meant to be a single machine solution aimed at artists who do not see themselves writing shaders or configuring renderfarms to create their frames. Also, Maya does have to be running for MRM to work.

ristopuukko
08-16-2004, 11:22 AM
Point taken, walshbem...

I might add that the ability to use compiled prman shaders is quite nice, though

/risto

playmesumch00ns
08-16-2004, 11:27 AM
I would think it's highly likely that they will include the shader compiler, as they'll doubtless need to include txmake as well.

If the whole point of this is to increase the RenderMan user base, it makes a lot of sense to get people using RSL.

I would be very surprised if this did not come with the shader compiler.

beaker
08-16-2004, 10:12 PM
Unfortunatly it does not. You have to purchase Renderman Pro Server to get this ability. Both txmake and shader are not included with renderman for maya. I asked them about this at siggraph.

RobertoO
08-16-2004, 10:31 PM
I would be very surprised if this did not come with the shader compiler.
I agree, there would be little point not including the shader compiler - best case is that a user would get into shader writing and upgrade to PRMan.

The thing to remember though is that even if RMan for Maya does let the user use .slo's in the hypershade they wont be networkable like mental ray shaders. This is a real limitation of the RI spec.

IMHO when Pixar set about desigining slim they should have opted to add the power into the spec to support networked functions/shaders and not into slim. This would have made for a more general purpose, modern renderman shading system instead of a cool bit of software specifically for Maya. Slim would have worked exactly the same, it'd have just been a fancy UI instead of a complex text preprocessor.

This is the great thing about mental rays design - its easy to provide a library of hundreds of shaders in a single dll ( mayabase.dll for example ) which can be used over and over without ever having the need to compile anything. So where as mental ray just needs mayabase.dll to support any shader you could ever write in Maya, PRMan needs to recompile a new shader everytime the artist makes a tweak.

PRMans shader design was great in the 90's but really needs to reflect the complexity of modern pipelines. More than anything else I suprised the current system doesn't give a studio the size of Pixar a few headaches.

anyway, only my opinion of course.

R

onlooker
08-17-2004, 03:23 AM
It does include support for Prman shaders like you get in MR for maya. Only thing is you have to have them already compiled. Raw .sl files can't be used. That feature was broken on the osx version the guy demoing it had so I couldn't see how much of the shader could be altered inside the maya hypershade.

So beaker, would that mean that one could download pre-compiled shaders, or write PRman (renderman) shaders in C++ to be used in renderman for Maya 1.0 if they had the know how?

And if they are already compiled how does one tweak a renderman shader? I've never used it.

I would be very surprised if this did not come with the shader compiler. You would think it would have to come with a dev package to compile your shaders.
Wouldn't you just use your platform specific compiler? Like in MacOS you would just use cc, or gcc -3 just the same as MR?

kemijo
08-17-2004, 03:36 AM
At the User Group meeting, the powerpoint presentation listed many of the restrictions...no RIB in or out, no DSO and procedural prims, and no SL out. This stands to reason that you can get SL in somehow...whether you need to compile it with shader.exe or not.

Onlooker, MRay needs a C++ compiler cuz the shaders are written in C++. RenderMan shaders are written in SL (Shading Language) which is specific to RenderMan, so all you need is the compiler that ships with whatever RMan distro you use...PRMan's is called shader.

beaker
08-17-2004, 03:40 AM
.sl shaders can only be compiled with the "shader" executable that comes with Pro Server. Only DSO's can be compiled with an external compiler like gcc or vc++ but they can't be used with Renderman for Maya.

playmesumch00ns
08-17-2004, 07:14 AM
Wow. I am surprised! Talk about shooting yourselves in the foot...

Seems to me Pixar's software development these days is getting more and more rushed. Seems like they're not thinking things through properly (or testing them)

malducin
08-17-2004, 07:46 AM
Why is that? Do you see animators and non technical people compiling DSO, writing shaders or having the need to massage RIBs? This is an out of the box solution to be used straight away.

This is the great thing about mental rays design - its easy to provide a library of hundreds of shaders in a single dll ( mayabase.dll for example ) which can be used over and over without ever having the need to compile anything.
It depends on your view. It's wasteful to have to load a huge dynamic library to use just a couple of shaders (even if you unload afterwards). Besides in pracdtice is no different that having PRMan shipping with lots of individual shaders that you can pick and choose. And conversly if you want to create a new MR shader icorporating a new illumination model you still have to write it and compile, just like in PRMan. You don't need o compile over and over in RMan shaders, only when you change the algorithm. But if you use certain shader and just want to modify the specific look, just change the parameters (via Slim or modifying the RIB or the function call). No difference between both systems.

playmesumch00ns
08-17-2004, 08:25 AM
I think it's reasonable not to expect people to want to write DSO's or do any RIB tickling, but RSL is one of the best things about RenderMan. It seems a little limiting to restrict users to what Maya's Hypershade offers. I won't argue with their strategy until we see how well it works. I'd miss it, that's all I'm saying. :)

mummey
08-17-2004, 12:37 PM
I think it's reasonable not to expect people to want to write DSO's or do any RIB tickling, but RSL is one of the best things about RenderMan. It seems a little limiting to restrict users to what Maya's Hypershade offers. I won't argue with their strategy until we see how well it works. I'd miss it, that's all I'm saying. :)
I won't disagree with ya, but I write shaders sometimes so why would I. :)

I think their intented market is the larger studios who have artists who do not write their own shaders but would like to preview their work from time to time. I don't see it being used as the final output since it would render slower with Maya running at the same time.

lestdog
08-17-2004, 02:26 PM
This is so stupid, Didn't they unveil this renderer at SIG? Still there is not breakdown at all about this thing on thier site. It's 1000 bucks and we are still not totally sure if we can get RSL into this thing. I hate it win companys tell us how much it's gonna cost but not exactly what it's gonna do.

kemijo
08-17-2004, 02:36 PM
I wouldn't get to flustered just yet...It's been announced, but it's not even in beta yet. It won't be out until after RMan 12/RAT 6.5 I'll bet, and that prolly won't be out until after Incredibles.

mummey
08-17-2004, 02:39 PM
I wouldn't get to flustered just yet...It's been announced, but it's not even in beta yet. It won't be out until after RMan 12/RAT 6.5 I'll bet, and that prolly won't be out until after Incredibles.
The guys at the booth said 3 months at least. It is not even code-complete yet. Expect RMan 12 in about a month and a half.

onlooker
08-17-2004, 02:55 PM
.sl shaders can only be compiled with the "shader" executable that comes with Pro Server. Only DSO's can be compiled with an external compiler like gcc or vc++ but they can't be used with Renderman for Maya.


Onlooker, MRay needs a C++ compiler cuz the shaders are written in C++. RenderMan shaders are written in SL (Shading Language) which is specific to RenderMan, so all you need is the compiler that ships with whatever RMan distro you use...PRMan's is called shader.

Thanks guys. Like I said I've never used it. But now it definitely seems a little silly not to come with "shader".

Anticulturist
08-17-2004, 04:04 PM
One thing they said at the booth, comparing to MR it should be a little bit faster.

fahr
08-17-2004, 06:33 PM
From what I'm reading, the point of RM for Maya is to give small studios an industrial strength renderer while still maintaining the normal Maya workflow. Just like Mental Ray. This has me very excited. I use Hypershade for shader creation, and do not have much time lately to learn how to create and compile renderman shaders. I will never be a Renderman shader programming god, but i still wish to have access to insanely fast motion blur, great displacements, deep shadows, auto-tesselsation, and industrial strength stability and scalability. So far this new app sounds perfect for small studios and 1 man shops, with one exception: Network rendering. I'm using Spider to net render with Maya software on anywhere from 3-6 machines at any given time. I understand that in order to use renderman on multiple machines, I need to pay per CPU, thats fine. BUt at least give me the option. I want to make a batch file that says "render -r rm scene1.ma" and have it work. That would be utopia. :)

shehbahn
08-17-2004, 07:13 PM
guessing again - but assuming you can batch maya renders, this plugin will behave exactly the same, as long as you have one licence of the plugin per CPU you will be rendering on.

onlooker
08-17-2004, 07:23 PM
You guys brought up CPU's so I have to complain a bit about something that is driving me up the wall. If your computer has Dual Processors (and so many do especially Mac's) you should be able to use both CPU's with MR, or RanderMan (any flavor). I think it's a totally bogus idea that you cant. :argh:

dstripinis
08-17-2004, 07:41 PM
What if you have a 64 proc SGI?

The reasoning is that to a network license server, 1 proc = 1 computer.

Lets say you have a dual proc machine, and I have two single proc machines. Why should you get to use both your procs for rendering when I can only use one?

or maybe I only have one single proc machine. Shouldn't I get 1/2 of the price of whatever program it is?

RobertoO
08-17-2004, 09:49 PM
[QUOTE=malducin]It depends on your view. It's wasteful to have to load a huge dynamic library to use just a couple of shaders (even if you unload afterwards). Besides in pracdtice is no different that having PRMan shipping with lots of individual shaders that you can pick and choose. And conversly if you want to create a new MR shader icorporating a new illumination model you still have to write it and compile, just like in PRMan. [QUOTE]

But in practice they are completly opposite. mayabase.dll is 860kb and contains every shader and utility. It would have to be a very large library to be any kind of bottleneck. As for a new illumination model, thats where mental ray shines - all you need to do is add the new material to your library and all your other functions will plug right in. RSL on the other hand would require every shader that needed that lighting model to be recompiled.

Look at the cool mental ray shaders that are begining to pop up on the internet. For example several people have writen subsurface scattering shaders for mental ray. A shader in mental ray only has to calculate a specific effect - the author doesn't need to know exactly how it'll be used because it can be networked with any other mental ray shader(such as texture mapping, bump mapping etc). This can be done in slim but not PRMan. No one will ever do it for slim and make it public because you'd have to give away the source code (slim templates are just TCL)

How many years has slim been around? - you can count on (almost) one hand the number of third party slim templates. In essence core mental ray is like slim minus the UI - so with mental ray your simply getting a more flexible shading system out the box.

playmesumch00ns
08-18-2004, 08:21 AM
How many years has slim been around? - you can count on (almost) one hand the number of third party slim templates. In essence core mental ray is like slim minus the UI - so with mental ray your simply getting a more flexible shading system out the box.
http://www.highend3d.com/renderman/shaders/

I'd need quite a few hands to count all of those.

Your point is basically right though - precompiled shaders are pretty much a closed box. Unless you fancy hacking the byte-code:) That means you can't drop them into the Hypershade and start plugging Maya functions into them. Which is why I was suprised they're not including shader.

But then again, as fahr said, most people won't care. And if they do, they'll probably upgrade to pro server.

rendermaniac
08-18-2004, 08:58 AM
Its worth noting that version 12 has totally eliminated eyesplits! check out the 12 feature list at the pixar site.

R
Amost every Pixar press release claims this. I'll believe it when I see it! They usually just push it a bit more, but eyesplits is fundamental to the REYES system.

Ironically I think at one time you had to compile shadeops seperately - then everyone went to inline compiling (everything in one shader). Maybe it's time to go backwards? I may be wrong here though.

Simon

onlooker
08-18-2004, 09:21 AM
What if you have a 64 proc SGI? (1)

The reasoning is that to a network license server, 1 proc = 1 computer. (1)

Lets say you have a dual proc machine, and I have two single proc machines. Why should you get to use both your procs for rendering when I can only use one? (2)

or maybe I only have one single proc machine. Shouldn't I get 1/2 of the price of whatever program it is?(3)

1) I understand why it sees what it does the way system license is set up, but there are simple ways of determining, and defining what your system is before you purchase, and they could easily supply a more specific license per system, and license them more accurately if they wanted to.

2)They are using 2 separate computers. They did not pay to use it on 2 computers. The person with the dual processor computer isn't trying to use it on anything more than his one computer. He is not attempting to cluster a mini farm from the UT2K4 Lan party he had the night before, or anything similar. But I think he does deserve to get full functionality from the application on his computer.

3)If a person has a single processor computer why would they pay less suddenly? That is the computer they decided to license. Does any other application that utilizes the second processor charge extra for it? H3ll no. Does that person deserve a price break for Maya, Photoshop -Image ready, Premier, Illustrator, After Effects, Lightwave 3D, Combustion, and more than half of the other pro applications in existence because they licensed the software to a single processor computer? Heck I didn't, but I don't think I deserve a price break because my computer doesn't have dual processors.


My 2¢

mummey
08-18-2004, 11:11 AM
You guys brought up CPU's so I have to complain a bit about something that is driving me up the wall. If your computer has Dual Processors (and so many do especially Mac's) you should be able to use both CPU's with MR, or RanderMan (any flavor). I think it's a totally bogus idea that you cant. :argh:
Dual Processors do not necessarily mean it will run twice as fast. In fact, it does not necessarily mean it will run faster at all. Renderman would have to be rewritten to handle multiple processors for the PPC970(the IBM processor the G5's run on). In fact Renderman would have to be rewritten for each type of processor you wanted to use dual processors with. (P4, AMD, Xeon, Itanium, etc...)

This is under the assumption that having the extra processor is a benefit. In the worst case, keeping track of the two processors causes extra overhead, or you use twice as much memory because basically you have two instances of Renderman running. These are just my estimates though.

-b

shehbahn
08-18-2004, 05:05 PM
>Amost every Pixar press release claims this. I'll believe it when I see it!

indeed - this version does make things a lot better though.

>you use twice as much memory because basically you have two instances of Renderman running.

there's a little bit more to it, but mostly accurate. unlike MR and other ray-tracers, REYES is not quite so amenable to fine grain parallelism. there are a couple new features (in pro-server i think) that make things better, but splitting buckets across 2 CPUs on the same machine still incurs some (sometimes very) significant memory costs.

beaker
08-18-2004, 08:05 PM
Dual Processors do not necessarily mean it will run twice as fast. In fact, it does not necessarily mean it will run faster at all. Renderman would have to be rewritten to handle multiple processors for the PPC970(the IBM processor the G5's run on). In fact Renderman would have to be rewritten for each type of processor you wanted to use dual processors with. (P4, AMD, Xeon, Itanium, etc...)Pixar added support for threading a single render to two processors in Prman 11. It was mainly meant for interactive rendering, not a renderfarm. Irma also supports multiple cpu's.

onlooker
08-18-2004, 09:26 PM
Pixar added support for threading a single render to two processors in Prman 11. It was mainly meant for interactive rendering, not a renderfarm. Irma also supports multiple cpu's.

Does that mean PRMan does indeed see better performance from a second CPU. I was starting to think that it didn't even support more than one CPU after browsing some older threads in here.

mummey
08-18-2004, 10:43 PM
Pixar added support for threading a single render to two processors in Prman 11. It was mainly meant for interactive rendering, not a renderfarm. Irma also supports multiple cpu's.

I stand corrected, and rightly so. :)

RobertoO
08-19-2004, 06:41 AM
OK, so there'a a handfull:D of slim templates - but it'd be great to see more - and I think the open source tcl style doesn't help things.

As far as 2 procs goes, as of 11.5 PRMan can be run with a -p:2 flag that will use two procs but only 1 license. PRMan isn't multithreaded though, so in effect the flag starts 2 separate PRMan processes that each require their own chunk of memory. Buckets are then distributed between the procs in the same way as netrender. Renders will take more or less twice as much memory with 2 procs than with 1 for this reason.

As far as speed goes the benefit varies from scene to scene. In general there's between 60 - 80% speed increase. Big scenes where network transfer of data (rib, textures, shadowmaps etc) plays a big part tend to get hit the worst cause the network can slow disproportionally as the volume of data increases.

Rob

onlooker
08-19-2004, 07:07 AM
But for the consumer, or student user the memory issue does not seem like it would be a problem, other than maybe not having enough. Unless I'm missing something.

playmesumch00ns
08-19-2004, 07:57 AM
Well with PRMan memory usage generally isn't a problem at all. You have to work pretty hard to get it to choke.

If you want to avoid network overhead distribute your textures etc to each render box and have the local disk at the top of your search paths.

rendermaniac
08-19-2004, 10:26 PM
Well with PRMan memory usage generally isn't a problem at all. You have to work pretty hard to get it to choke.

If you want to avoid network overhead distribute your textures etc to each render box and have the local disk at the top of your search paths.
I've managed to get it to choke ;) But the beauty of RenderMan is that there is a lot you can do to optimise things. Roll on 64 bit machines and plenty more memory to chew on!

If you use 3delight it has a RIB option to automatically set up a local texture cache on the render node and handle then as you'd expect- something that prman should have really.

Simon

shehbahn
08-19-2004, 11:19 PM
quick notes about the "-p" mode - this is directly from the documentation:

Note that this rendering mode consumes licenses in a "pairwise" fashion: in other words, each pair of processors will check out one license.


it is correct that similar to netrender, render -p will spawn coarse grain subprocesses. for all intents and purposes, considering the memory to "double" is somewhat accurate (some caching assets are shared by the subprocesses but those usually only account for a small percentage of the memory used).

RobertoO
08-20-2004, 06:26 PM
If you use 3delight it has a RIB option to automatically set up a local texture cache on the render node and handle then as you'd expect- something that prman should have really.

Yeah, the texture cache feature is really nice in 3delight, the 1 pass subsurface scattering shadeop is also pretty cool too. It would be nice if prman had something similar in both these respects.

shehbahn
08-20-2004, 07:32 PM
>Yeah, the texture cache feature is really nice in 3delight,

distributed renders with alfred can easily be setup so that textures can be cached locally - so the feature is "available". asset management is not exactly a "rendering" task, which is why it is left to the render manager software.

>the 1 pass subsurface scattering shadeop is also pretty cool too. It would be nice if prman had something similar in both these respects.

not sure how the "1 pass" bssrdf shadeop works, but simulating diffusion without pre-caching of some data is rather... inefficient. for data caching, the current RAT release has a number of irradiance cache files that can be used for global illumination / expensive calculations. this is also expanded with a more generic scheme of 3D textures with version 12 (not sure what was announced at Siggraph... so that's all i'll say for now).

beaker
08-20-2004, 09:19 PM
this is also expanded with a more generic scheme of 3D textures with version 12 (not sure what was announced at Siggraph... so that's all i'll say for now).Yea, they went over the whole brick map and point cloud data formats at the renderman users group meeting at siggraph so your safe to talk about it. It is some really cool technology that I will definatly be using in the future.

RobertoO
08-21-2004, 09:49 AM
>distributed renders with alfred can easily be setup so that textures can be cached locally -
>so the feature is "available". asset management is not exactly a "rendering" task, which is
>why it is left to the render manager software.

Yes alfred is certainly capable of copying textures from one place to the next (3Delight uses a LRU cache mechanism - a custom program would be required to mimick this exactly in alfred). Thats the easy bit though. The hard part is modifying texture paths in the RIB and possibly shaders so that the local copies get used during the render while keeping it all transparent to the user. I guess rif filters could be used to modify paths in the rib but for texture paths constructed on the fly in shaders there's no easy solution - this is why 3Delights method is nice. Also I wasn't aware MTOR allowed users to "customise" job submissions to Alfred anyway. If it is possible then thats quite cool, if not though, even copying files from one place to another in a robust/transparent way is tricky.


>not sure how the "1 pass" bssrdf shadeop works, but simulating diffusion without pre->caching of some data is rather... inefficient.

3Delight does cache data, but it's been designed to work as a built in pre-process much like mental rays final gather. By 1 pass I meant it only needs 1 rib submission so to speak. Surfaces are grouped and as soon as the renderer hits a collection of surfaces that have a shader that uses the subsurfacescatter shadeop the render precomputes the diffusion (with the option to save out the data to a file). Looking at the Incredibles shading I imagine Pixar have got some tricks up their sleeve to handle this stuff on much bigger scenes. 3Delights method is still nice though, we'll have to wait and see how prman 12 handles it.

dmaas
08-21-2004, 09:51 PM
The 3D point-cloud/brick idea is awesome because it allows you to bake shading information without needing a parameterized surface. (all the older baking methods involved texture maps, which meant you needed to spend time setting up texture coordinates on polygons and SubDs). Point clouds are just "fire and forget". (although if you want to bake deforming geometry without re-baking every frame, then you'll still need some kind of parameterization or Pref setup).

This is all very good news as the PRMan 11.5 occlusion/irradiance cache feature is very rudimentary. (especially in memory usage- the entire ocf file is loaded on first reference and stays resident, so you can easily run out of memory)

RobertoO
08-22-2004, 10:13 AM
The brickmap format sounds very interesting, I'm looking forward to finding out more about it. So am I right in thinking its possible to bake anything? Re - reading the 12 press release it seems as though sss is done through point cloud filtering instead of a dedicated shadeop. If this is the case I guess pixar are going to have to make some interesting mods to slim for it all to work in an artist freindly way. cant wait!

Rob

playmesumch00ns
08-23-2004, 08:39 AM
I'm personally not a huge fan of the pointcloud-filter sss workflow. You have to illuminat e your cache in a preliminary render, then do your diffusion on it, then brickmake it, then do your beauty render. Then what happens if you want to move a light? You have to start all over again. It's an efficient way of doing things for sure, but it breaks the tweak-repeat cycle fro an artist. And until Pixar open up mtor some more there's no way we'll be able to create an efficient workflow for it.

If you ask me, the solution presented by erin tomson at siggraph last year for finding nemo's much better. I'vebeen using that for a while now and it works great.

It is nice to have a 3d bake, but there are some cases where a 2d parameterized bake is much better, and it's nice just to be able to paint a texture...

neods
08-23-2004, 09:44 AM
as title say "PIXAR RenderMan for Maya 1.0 Unveiled", does it mean that it will only work on Maya 1.0? as the current Maya version is 6.0. Just wanted to clarify this.

WHW
08-23-2004, 10:12 AM
Nope, it's "RenderMan for Maya v1.0" meaning it's the first version of RenderMan for Maya. They have the same naming convention for MentalRay, which confused me at the start ;)

ThomasMahler
08-23-2004, 10:31 AM
as title say "PIXAR RenderMan for Maya 1.0 Unveiled", does it mean that it will only work on Maya 1.0? as the current Maya version is 6.0. Just wanted to clarify this.

Geez... ;)

neods
08-23-2004, 11:30 AM
Thanks. I know my question was dumb as ****, but the naming confused me and i think many other people. I aint a newbie in the business, but i havent been checking renderman so much, and when I saw these news I was like "wha?"

shehbahn
08-23-2004, 05:18 PM
>The hard part is modifying texture paths in the RIB and possibly shaders so that the local copies get used during the render while keeping it all transparent to the user.

actually - if you set your searchpaths in the RIB properly, with a half decent directory structure this should be -really- easy (assuming you're not relying on something like NTFS or other wannabe file systems)

>You have to illuminate your cache in a preliminary render, then do your diffusion on it, then brickmake it, then do your beauty render.

that can be easily fully automated in MTOR so that all you have to do is push the render button... the only serious drawback is having to wait for the irradiance pass (which on average is much faster than a standard shadow pass)

>And until Pixar open up mtor some more there's no way we'll be able to create an efficient workflow for it.

got a specific idea ? chances are you can already do it...

>If you ask me, the solution presented by erin tomson at siggraph last year for finding nemo's much better.

actually : Erin's solution is very very similar to this. the main difference is that she computes the mean free paths at render time, with an approach that's based on V. Jensen's implementation presented in his second Siggraph paper (2001 or 2002). there are a number of problems with this, a big one being that the longer the scatter length, the longer the render time and the more inaccurate the solution (noise / blotches). and you still have the extra-irradiance gathering step. on average, this solution is significantly slower, but the price is displaced from a pre-pass to the render of the actual frame. i am not saying that ptfilter is the perfect solution (it needs some speed improvements), but it has a number of advantages on large scale applications.

>The brickmap format sounds very interesting ... its possible to bake anything?

correct - you can bake any type of data ( floats / colors / points / vectors )

>though sss is done through point cloud filtering instead of a dedicated shadeop

the current swiss-army shadeop is terrible : it's a complete brute force approach - it was about time another solution was included in the pack...

>I wasn't aware MTOR allowed users to "customise" job submissions to Alfred anyway.

alfred (and MTOR) are completely flexible : you can use alfred to manage any and all tasks on a renderfarm, be it prman / MR or shake. similarly, mtor is very flexible and you can submit ribs to any renderer of your choice that accepts ribs.

RobertoO
08-24-2004, 07:39 AM
>actually - if you set your searchpaths in the RIB properly, with a half decent directory >structure this should be -really- easy (assuming you're not relying on something like NTFS or >other wannabe file systems)

Thanks - don't quite follow though. Any chance of expanding on this? I assume PRMan checks searchpaths in the order they're defined - so the local path first would mean a local search first - but what has the file system got to do with it?

thanks

playmesumch00ns
08-24-2004, 08:28 AM
This message is at least ten characters long

beaker
08-24-2004, 03:45 PM
>actually - if you set your searchpaths in the RIB properly, with a half decent directory >structure this should be -really- easy (assuming you're not relying on something like NTFS or >other wannabe file systems)

Thanks - don't quite follow though. Any chance of expanding on this? I assume PRMan checks searchpaths in the order they're defined - so the local path first would mean a local search first - but what has the file system got to do with it?

thanks
Because on any *nix system you can easily create symbolic links to resolve your path problem in a matter of seconds. Since it is not on windows with NTFS you don't have to deal with retarded drive letters that cause so many problems.

shehbahn
08-24-2004, 05:25 PM
>I assume PRMan checks searchpaths in the order they're defined - so the local path first would mean a local search first

correct - this way, if by some turn of events your local copy forgot to move over files, a remote copy can still be used. also depending on how your data is arrayed and networked, you will probably want to keep some textures remote and have only part of the data set moved over to the render node.

>but what has the file system got to do with it?

NFS just makes things a lot more transparent and easy. assuming you have a consistent directory structure (some would call it a pipeline...), every machine can see the entire data set, however big it may be, under the same exact tree starting at the root. the same path works for everyone. maintaining the same consistency on NTFS is a proven recipe for headaches. sym links are just the icing on the cake.

RobertoO
08-24-2004, 06:10 PM
thanks guys - I think I need to invest in a crash course unix book...

ThomasMahler
11-23-2004, 08:50 PM
So, any news about the Renderman Plug-In? Didn't want to create a new thread for it, but don't you guys think it's awefully silent round here? I mean, they wanna launch the product 01/05, right? Some news about the Plug-In wouldn't be bad! *cough* :)

onlooker
11-23-2004, 10:12 PM
So, any news about the Renderman Plug-In? Didn't want to create a new thread for it, but don't you guys think it's awefully silent round here? I mean, they wanna launch the product 01/05, right? Some news about the Plug-In wouldn't be bad! *cough* :)

It's rare that they pre-announce anything twice. They already pre-announced it once. So unless it's delayed a little while I would expect to see it on time.
If not I would hope for the courtesy of a rescheduled release date from the press release portion of the website.

beaker
11-24-2004, 12:25 AM
The biggest update they announced is that the shader compiler will be included now. Other than that, the December-January ship date was their goal, not a definate date.

mustique
11-24-2004, 11:27 AM
My initial interest got lost. No multithreading doesn't make justice to the price IMO.

I mean what's the point in giving away 1000 bucks when you get a free 2 cpu mentalray licence with maya? I'd rather put another 1000 bucks on top of that and get another maya seat with another 2 cpu mr licences.

3delight
11-25-2004, 08:11 AM
>Yeah, the texture cache feature is really nice in 3delight,

distributed renders with alfred can easily be setup so that textures can be cached locally - so the feature is "available". asset management is not exactly a "rendering" task, which is why it is left to the render manager software.


Not really. There is many things only the renderer knows about:

1) Which textures are used exactly ? Could you manage to find that out just by looking at a RIB ?
2) Will every texture be used ? An object might be invisible, so its textures might not be needed.
3) How to efficientely manage the cache (without copying everything?). Only heursitics on texture access can give you an idea.

Also, among other problems is managing concurrent renders all caching textures at the same time.

Anyway, the render manager software can't really do all that.

- Aghiles.

ThomasMahler
01-23-2005, 05:37 PM
Man, I'm dying for news here... Is no one else here waiting for it to be released? Me wantsss it!

dmaas
01-24-2005, 09:14 PM
Kevin at Cinesite posted an ingenious solution to the Windows/UNIX path mapping problem:

"we use paths that look like
//data/path/to/file.tx
that windows interprets as "path/to/file.tx" on the machine data,
but linux interprets as a file with path /data/path/to/file.tx, and our machines
are set up so that these are actually the same place on a shared server."

i.e. use UNC paths with forward slashes on Windows (which treats forward slashes just like backslashes), and set up a symlink on the UNIX root (UNIX ignores the additional slash at the beginning). Then the *exact* same string is a valid Windows and UNIX path!

robo3687
01-25-2005, 11:30 PM
so is this the only version of renderman that will work with Maya 6?

cos the boss just upgraded our 2 maya workstations to version 6 and now MTOR won't work....? we've got RAT 6.0 and RMPS 11.5.3

he wanted me to find out if he was gunna have to change versions or something

beaker
01-25-2005, 11:54 PM
so is this the only version of renderman that will work with Maya 6?

cos the boss just upgraded our 2 maya workstations to version 6 and now MTOR won't work....? we've got RAT 6.0 and RMPS 11.5.3

he wanted me to find out if he was gunna have to change versions or somethingWhere have you guys been? RAT for maya 6 has been out since last summer. Also Prman 12 came out 4 months ago.

robo3687
01-26-2005, 12:04 AM
ok thats fair enough.....but shouldn't it work then?..version 6 is as far as RAT has gone isn't it?

EDIT: ok nevermind....got my answer on the pixar forums.... :) need to get RAT 6.0.1

gladallover
03-23-2005, 08:17 AM
Thursday April 7th 2005 at 5.00pm.

Pixar is pleased to announce the worldwide launch event for RenderMan for Maya – a completely new rendering workflow for Maya artists aspiring to the highest levels of movie quality rendering available only through Pixar's award-winning RenderMan technology.

RenderMan for Maya is a completely new product, seamlessly integrated into Maya's unified rendering interface and offering unparalleled workflow productivity combined with RenderMan's advanced rendering tools - all at a price of only $995.

Targeted at Maya artists not requiring every feature in RenderMan Pro Server but who demand the same uncompromising levels of visual quality, RenderMan for Maya is currently scheduled for shipping in summer 2005.

Due to limited seating, attendees are encouraged to register as soon as possible for this special Pixar event to be held on Thursday April 7th at:

Gnomon School of Visual Effects
1015 North Cahuenga
Hollywood, CA 90038
323-466-6663 (Received via email)

I can't make it to the launch, so I'm hoping someone will post some feedback from the launch here. I've also heard that Gnomon are considering making training films for Renderman based products.

kemijo
03-23-2005, 09:51 AM
ok thats fair enough.....but shouldn't it work then?..version 6 is as far as RAT has gone isn't it?

EDIT: ok nevermind....got my answer on the pixar forums.... :) need to get RAT 6.0.1

If you intend to use Maya 6.5, don't upgrade yet...Renderman 12.5 is in beta and RAT 6.5 will be out soon as well.

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