Running Maya 8.0 on Macbook Pro.
I am trying to light up and interior room scene with FG, GI and need some help. I feel like I'm almost getting it but am stuck a bit. I've attached some picts.
I have an interior room scene. It's was modeled in Feet but I've changed the scale to centimeters and scaled the entire scene down. It is now 20 x 15 units in centimeter scale.
I have 2 light sources.
1 spot light (about 38 units away)
1 area light (right outside the front window shining right into the building)
I have raytraced shadows on for both. Emit photons for both. And the area light is a regular maya area light with Mental Ray checked to on.
I can get really good lighting with these two lights. The photons are working well and the indirect lighting seems to be filling the room well. When I do tests with the photons, things look good to me.
My problem is the area light. If I get rid of it and just use the spot the scene lights up OK and the noise is gone! If it bring the are light back and use it I get much better lighting but my god the noise is a bit much. I figure the noise is coming from the soft shadows being created by the area light. So I cranked up the High level samples... still noisy... I cranked it up some more. The rendering I show here has a sample number of 250! Which seems to high to me. From everything I've read it seems like I shouldn't go above 8 or so. Even then at 250 the noise is very noticable.
The sampling in my Render Settings is set to min 0 and max 1.
And my FG settings are max 10% of the scene size and min 10% of the max. Basically- 2 and .2. 400 rays.
I've tried adjusting EVERYTHING and can't get rid of the grain unless i really crank things up and then the render time is too high. The attached render took almost 10 minutes. 640 x 480. The scene seems very simple too. Low polygon count. Flat DGS shader on everything with no glossy or specular on. I'm afraid of what will happen if I put on reflections and transparency maps.
I know FG and GI rendering using area lights takes a good chunk of time but 9 minutes on a simple scene seems a bit high to me. Is that a descent time? What else can I do to crank the render time down. How can I get rid of the noise?
Any help is awesome. Hope all of the above made scense and sorry for writing a novel to describe the problems.