View Full Version : optimizing MR

03 March 2003, 03:06 AM
I remember quite some time ago reading a brochure for mental ray 2.1 and in it, one of the big selling points about mental ray was how the renderer only recalculated the lighting information for portions of an image that changed after the initial image when making animations, hence improving render times signifcantly over other GI solutions at the time. In other words, that it took awhile to render the first frame, but subsequent frames would render very quickly. Having been experimenting with mental ray for maya, I simply cannot figure out how to implement this feature for an entire enviornment (including what the camera doesn't see in the first frame) and also with having other objects interact with the scene (but not being crucial for the GI calculation).

I think finalRender has made this a major cornerstone of their addon max renderer plugin. Cebas talks about being able to save GI info for an environment and then have animated charcters cast additional shadows in the scene keeping render times really low while having a certain level of GI (obviously the characters would not be part ofthe GI calculation).

Anyways, I'm floating a bit off topic here. I already know that these maps can be stored, but it seems that it only applies to whats visible in the first frame. The ultimate question is can a GI or FG map be calculated for an entire environment (beyond whats visible in the first frame) and then used in addition to normal lighting for later aniamtion?

does anyone having any further information on this?

03 March 2003, 08:03 AM
Hey Jason,

Here's a little QuickTime movie explaining how to bake the lighting information into your objects:

I'd use this method instead disabling the recalculate map feature because it give you a lot more control. You can actually bake maps for your characters too. I've used that while building the skin textures on a few characters that I've built before. It's actually really cool.


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