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leed
05-07-2007, 10:27 AM
Hello all

I am looking to get Vue xStream for use in conjunction with C4D.

Is there anybody using it here at the moment?
Are there any issues?
Does it run well on a Mac - Pc network?
Does it intergrate well with Vray in Max?

I have lots of questions and hope someone here will be able to help me out before I buy.

Thanks in advance.

Lee

bruno021
05-08-2007, 12:53 AM
I'm also experimenting with Xstream & C4D.

Haven't found any issue yet, but I'm not an experienced C4D user yet.
Haven't tried a hybrid pc-mac network, but I know some have, with Vue Infinite, and it works well.
Now about Max, xStream only works with MR.

leed
05-08-2007, 08:04 AM
Bruno thanks for the reply

How do you find the link with C4D. Do the Vue elements show and render straight in C4d window?

Can you bring in animated elements? trees and plants.

Can you give me a bit of a description to your pipe line?

How do you find E-on's tec support?

Thanks

Lee

bruno021
05-08-2007, 09:48 AM
Do get the xstream plug in to work, simply call it from the plug in menu, you then have the option to open the Vue interface where you can work on your vue scene.

Everything renders inside the cinema interface, native C4D elements are rendered by C4D, Vue elements are rendered by Vue, but inside Cinema's viewport or external renderer.
You can bring in animated Vue scenes. The Vue elements will be rendered by Vue inside Cinema.
My pipeline is very modest, since I'm more of a hobbyist than a pro, I sometimes get pro work, but not as often as I'd like, so my pipeline is this:
Cinema4D R10 ( basic + advanced renderer), Vue 6 Infinite ( and now trying out the xStream plug in), Poser ( well, yeah, Poser!), XFrog and Photoshop, also have Hexagon2, but rarely use it (too many bugs and freezes). I'm currently looking for a cheap solution for video editing since the next job is an HD animation for a TV show.
Many things have been said about e-on's tech support, half very bad, half very good. I've never had a problem with them, always get an answer within 48hrs, but then again, I always try and give them as many details as possible, and generally send them a scene to test when I find something wrong.

artzfx
05-08-2007, 11:04 AM
Hi Leed,

Vue 6 xStream is my first e-onsoftware experience. I purchased during pre-release. Obviously there has been some bugs along the way. The support guys have always been very helpful towards me and send me updates as soon as a new build is out to fix any bugs I have raised.

I have a couple of preset atmospheres (of the many) that produce a black 1-2 pixel height horizontal line in renders when rendered in C4D but support are working on it. It doesn't happen when using Vue in standalone mode.

It is real fun software to use. I purchased the Lush and Realm Art tree/plant packs from www.Cornucopia3D.com (http://www.Cornucopia3D.com) and am very happy with them.

leed
05-08-2007, 11:37 AM
Thanks for your response.

I have down loaded the demo of Vue and love it.

What happens with lighting set-ups, is all of that done by environments from vue or is there some matching needed in c4d?

I would like it for archi vis work, stills and animations and speed, for animations is important. What are the render times like?

If you get the xStream plugin do you get a stand alone licence to?

Thanks for your help.

Lee

artzfx
05-08-2007, 01:19 PM
I haven't made many combined C4D/Vue scenes as yet, mainly used Vue as standalone to create pieces for other scenes whilst they sorted out some bugs with saving C4D/xStream files (since fixed). You can light however you wish... using a combo of both apps. As Bruno mentioned Cinema 4D renders its objects and Vue its own objects.

Your Vue 6 xStream licence is one build which is Vue 6 Infinite and the xStream plugin. Both install. You can choose to open as stndalone Vue 6 Inf or xStream via C4D plugin menu. The app looks the same either way. The build also includes 32bit and 64bit versions.

leed
05-08-2007, 04:16 PM
Your Vue 6 xStream licence is one build which is Vue 6 Infinite and the xStream plugin. Both install. You can choose to open as stndalone Vue 6 Inf or xStream via C4D plugin menu. The app looks the same either way. The build also includes 32bit and 64bit versions.
Thanks

Is the xStream plugin tied to the serial number of the C4d?

Lee

bruno021
05-08-2007, 05:18 PM
No, the plug in isn't tied to a serial, but once you chose to use it with C4D, you cannot change it for another app. It will be bound to C4D forever.

About the lighting, main lighting set up is done with Vue if you decide so, but you'll probably want to use Vue for environments and realistic spectral atmospheres. Vue can do indoor radiosity, but so can Cinema, you don't need Vue for this.
With the xstream plug in, you don't get the standalone app, you need to buy the xStream bundle to get both. But if you already own Vue 6 Infinite, just buy the plug in.
Render speeed is not Vue's main highlight. Progress have been made, and will continue to be made with regular software updates, it has been this way with Vue5, so it's likely to be the same for Vue6.
In standalone mode, you can use up to 5 render nodes, if you have a network.
In xStream mode, you only get one. You'll need to buy additionnal nodes for network rendering.

leed
05-08-2007, 06:02 PM
In standalone mode, you can use up to 5 render nodes, if you have a network.
In xStream mode, you only get one. You'll need to buy additionnal nodes for network rendering.


So if I have an Oct Mac with 8 cores it will only use 5, and there is no net rendering facility,
indeed if I had a render farm with 20 machienes I would need to buy 20 nodes?

This does not make a scense with animations, you need a farm, so it will be very expensive.

Is that right? does anybody use vue for animation, how do you handle the time?

Lee

C4DS
05-08-2007, 06:37 PM
I use Vue in combination with C4D R9.6. Only for a few weeks now, and the more I use it the more it seems to be stable ;-)
The first few days I used it, I couldn't get anything done. The Vue scenes were a huge 200MB scene file, with sometimes between 50 en 200 milj. polys. It always ended up locking my machine (so I thought). But after a while, and with the taskmanager permanently open in de systray (I am on PC), I managed to get all scenes opened and rendered with a few workarounds.

My workflow is to create the scenery in Vue (standalone), save that as a scene file.
Create the other props and terrains in Cinema4D, and set all settings and lights as well as camera. Save that as a "prepare_xstream" file without anything related to Vue. When that is saved, I import the Vue scene, and wait, wait, wait ... until the taskmanagers shows 0% CPU activity. Then I remove the Vue lights (as I have already setup the same lights in C4D), and go the xStream plugin settings, disable the Vue camera and enable save Vue scene (this has to be done only once, those settings are kept).
Save the complete scene as a "include_xstream" file. It will take again some time before everything is actually saved, again looking at the taskmanager to know that it didn't crash ...
And when all is safe and saved, I close the project, en perform a batchrender of the scene.
I only have 2GB RAM, and once all is used the application (Cinema or the Vue plugin, I don't know) just crashes and locks up the system. I never could manage to render from withint the open scene without locking up. But using the batchrender, I have never had a render fail.

At first glance, it doesn't look to optimistic in favour of Vue needing the workarounds to get a result, but after the many hours, days and weeks getting nowhere (and multitude of crashes) it soon becomes a second nature to do the workarounds.
I am sure that with smaller scenes, or more RAM things can only be better.

Also another thing to note. If you use HAIR in Cinema4D in combination with Vue, you'll notice that the post-render of the hairs will conflict with the Vue render. One solution is to turn the hairs into polygons ...

leed
05-08-2007, 06:56 PM
My workflow is to create the scenery in Vue (standalone), save that as a scene file.
Create the other props and terrains in Cinema4D, and set all settings and lights as well as camera. Save that as a "prepare_xstream" file without anything related to Vue. When that is saved, I import the Vue scene, and wait, wait, wait ... until the taskmanagers shows 0% CPU activity. Then I remove the Vue lights (as I have already setup the same lights in C4D), and go the xStream plugin settings, disable the Vue camera and enable save Vue scene (this has to be done only once, those settings are kept).
Save the complete scene as a "include_xstream" file. It will take again some time before everything is actually saved, again looking at the taskmanager to know that it didn't crash ...
And when all is safe and saved, I close the project, en perform a batchrender of the scene.
I only have 2GB RAM, and once all is used the application (Cinema or the Vue plugin, I don't know) just crashes and locks up the system. I never could manage to render from withint the open scene without locking up. But using the batchrender, I have never had a render fail.


Good grief that seems almost unworkable....

What type of scenes are you looking at, can you post an exsample?

How long does it take to render them?

Lee

C4DS
05-08-2007, 07:54 PM
With Ambient Occlusion (default settings) and 6 lights (only one with shadows) the xstream render takes an average of 20-30 minutes using geometry anti-aliasing and final output size of 720x576. Note that I have a composition tag on the Vue objects to be excluded from the AO.

Attached is an extremely compressed jpg (to limit filesize). It shows a waterwell, terrain and grass created in Cinema4D, the background and foreground vegetations is all Vue.

I started with a complete environment, as there are more than 30 shots to be taken from different angles. For each shot I reduce all trees and vegetation to only show what is visible to the camera for every shot, and offscreen vegetation that cast shadows.
This way I can sometimes reduce the 200 mil. poly, to "only" 50 mil.
I don't want to try and load or even render the full environment ... maybe it doesn't make a difference, but I just never tried.

Continuumx
05-08-2007, 09:32 PM
Vue Xstream 6 is great. My latest piece was well over 12 billion polygons and rendered pretty fast considering the polygon weight, no lockups. All this in 2 GB of ram. I do not think I will take the temptation to go much further over 12 billion but it was nice to have a fully loaded scene including environment in one rendering package.

leed
05-09-2007, 10:03 AM
Thanks for the replies.

I am still a bit confused though. The xStream bundle is only available for windows, no Mac osx. I can get the stand alone for Mac but want the integration with C4d.

So are there any Mac users of xStream?

and by nodes you mean computers? so I can have 5 oct G5s running totalling 40 processors?

Thanks for your help so far...

Lee

mmhnemo
05-09-2007, 10:56 AM
I just downloaded the PLE Version of Vue6 Xstream and started checking all these things on my own.
Although one might think the Software crashes (because they have no screen update sometimes during render) i had no crashes whatsoever yet - all renders showed up eventually if given the time to complete.
Also im running on an 8core machine and in standalone all 8 cores are working 100%.
Starting the same render from within cinema all 8 cores are crunching at ~25%. So i'm still experimenting but things are looking good at the moment.

Download the PLE and see if it works out for you.

leed
05-09-2007, 11:07 AM
thanks mmhnemo

The PLE of xStream is a windows only thing... I have the PLE stand alone Vue 6 and love it.

are you running xStream, in C4d... colud you clarify, did you down load the Windows version?

Lee

mmhnemo
05-09-2007, 08:25 PM
yes sorry - i loaded the windows version of xstream6

bruno021
05-09-2007, 09:54 PM
Leed, xStream is windows only at the moment.

mmhnemo
05-14-2007, 08:35 AM
Hi again,

well i've been experimenting more and more and now have some questions:

1)
When rendering from C4D using a GI atmosphere i get black artifacts in my pictures. Black lines start to appaer - sometimes single lines and sometimes bigger blocks of unrendered black space.
Has anyone an idea what causes this problem?

2)
Also when rendering from C4D the processor utilization seems to be malfunctioning. Rarely the renderer uses all 8 cores to 100%, more often it will use only ~30-50% and even more often it will use only 25% of each core's capacity.
Does anyone have an idea why this is so and what i could do to enhance this?

Thanks in advance

Nicholas

leed
05-14-2007, 09:17 AM
"I have a couple of preset atmospheres (of the many) that produce a black 1-2 pixel height horizontal line in renders when rendered in C4D but support are working on it. It doesn't happen when using Vue in standalone mode."
Artfx noted a simular problem with a few of the environments.

and I have read somewhere that Vue will only use multi core rendering to the full when used in stand alone.

I may be wrong I have read a lot of things about vue lately. most good I hasten to add...


Keep testing let me know how you are getting on.

Vue xStream is not available for a Mac OSX yet this is the responce from tec support.

"Xstream6 for Mac is still in development. We wish there was something more to say other than we are working hard to make this happen. Unfortunately we have no exact release date at this time. Yes xStream works on windows only Vue6 products work on both mac and windows. Thanks for your patience."

Lee

mmhnemo
05-14-2007, 11:48 AM
Thanks Leed,

do you know if they are working on a fix for the multicore support from C4D?

regards

Nicholas

leed
05-14-2007, 12:00 PM
Thanks Leed,

do you know if they are working on a fix for the multicore support from C4D?

regards

Nicholas

Really do not know. try having a look on

http://www.cornucopia3d.com

There is a good and active forum there.

Lee

Lex1968
08-10-2007, 08:54 AM
Hi Lee,

I have the same pipeline here: OSX, Vue 6 Infinite and C4D10. Syncing the camera's can easily be done with the plugin as mentioned. I have done a little test, not a complete and final animation, but it looks allright... I'll sent it to you by email.

Here are some additional tips:

Be sure to have the latest built and latest sync plugins from the e-on site.
Bake your C4D camera path into keyframes.

Hope that helps a little.

Cheers, Lex

ooo
08-10-2007, 10:40 AM
If you didn't read the news yet: xStream is available for OSX now! YES!!!

odo

artzfx
08-11-2007, 12:17 AM
Hi again,

well i've been experimenting more and more and now have some questions:

1)
When rendering from C4D using a GI atmosphere i get black artifacts in my pictures. Black lines start to appaer - sometimes single lines and sometimes bigger blocks of unrendered black space.
Has anyone an idea what causes this problem?
Thanks in advance

Nicholas


Nicholas,

The Black artifacts issue has been resolved since your post, as have any other bugs I have submitted to support. Another main bug was saving C4D/xStream files which has also been fixed since your post.

I have just installed 6.5 and tested that both issues have not resurfaced.

Tip: One thing to remember when rendering in C4D/xStream is that you need to set the render size inside of the Vue Interface as this controls the size, not the settings in the C4D render settings.

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