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Old 01-07-2013, 07:27 AM   #46
lewistaylor
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lewis taylor
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My two cents.

I've been using RMS4 & RPS17 for the last couple months as I was given a nice eval
by the folks at Pixar, and I'm sold on it. The Plausible shading stuff works well and the
hooks into Maya GUI wise are good. I'm coming from 2-3 years in Vray and recently a few months in Arnold and I really dig it.

The revamped website was overdue and it made sense in combining the RFM & RMS into
one version, it's price is pretty much the same as VRay. The Renderman University tutorials
on the website are a slightly stripped down version of Escape Studios Renderman course that ran for a few years, heaps of good stuff there.

Increased sales fuelling dev? I'm pretty sure the crumbs from Toy Story merch would more than cover that. OpenSubDiv wont lead to world domination, I think you're reading too much into this.

There seems to be this notion that every Renderman shader needs to be hand-coded, this is simply not the case. Renderman, and 3Delight for that matter, will translate standard Maya shaders on the fly. But just like VRay will work quicker and more stable by using it's native shaders, so will Renderman. Slim can be used to visually construct an elaborate shader so you really can get by without coding anything.

The power of RSL is in the fact that shaders aren't dumb. They can be used to query quite a lot of things, and pass those results on. If you need that power, it's there.

I had a scene in VRay that had lots of objects acting as lights (think neon lights) to get colour bleeding onto the live plate, took from 1-2 hours at full HD. Still a little noisy, but it's
just like film grain yeah? I did a comparison test in 3Delight & PRMan using point cloud colour
bleeding. 3-5 minutes full HD, noise free. This is not to take anything away from VRay, I use it every day at work and it's ace, or to say that Renderman is perfect. But it illustrated to me the flexibility in having point based indirect as an option.

Finally, if you really are curious just email them for a eval.

Lewis
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Old 01-07-2013, 04:25 PM   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grrinc
May I ask a question? And excuse my ignorance here. But for years I have always wondered why there is a need for 'shader's' that are so complicated that a level of programing is needed. I wondered if it was some dark art and must admit to feeling a bit of a fool for asking.

Could someone give me a 'layman's' example of why such a system is needed?

It's a bit odd that people are saying that RSL shaders need to be handcoded and require a CS background of sorts, it's not technically true.

RSL is very simple to code if you really need to, otherwise tools like Slim allow for some really complex shaders without any programming knowledge. I taught myself basic to midelvel RSL in a very short time and the ideas are very easy to grasp, especially if you are a compositor.


As for why the ability to code the shaders is desired, there are a few reasons:

*POWER. the ability to go low level and edit a shader that isn't working exactly like you want is incredibly useful. It may be faster than manually editing it in a gui, you can batch it, you can get very specific very quickly

*Optimization: a lot of general purpose shaders are meant for ease of use for the artist and maximum flexibility. the flexibility comes at the cost of speed. Being able to handcode a shader or using slim to build a custom one, is huge for films. What may be a few miliseconds in a single shader can amount to hours or days on a full feature.

*Render time calculations: Renderman allows for rendertime dso calculations. these can be incredibly powerful. For example, most of the vegetation in Brave is created at rendertime by a dso, feeding off parameters the artist provides. This dso was advanced enough(from the demo i saw), that it could calculate wind etc at rendertime too with very little overhead.




Also if you want to try renderman out, other recommendations I| can make are to download 3Delight which is free for a single license, or download Houdini.
Houdini's mantra render engine and it's shader writing language are so similiar to Renderman and RSL that you can often use the same shaders with minimal changes.

That said, neither tool is as artist friendly as Renderman. You won't be missing funtionality, but the added overhead of their more technical UIs can often detract from the power and flexibility you get
 
Old 01-08-2013, 02:45 AM   #48
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A little more question. If I buy RenderMan for Maya, which RenderMan product do I need for the render farms? RenderMan for Maya doesn't include any license for the farm right?
 
Old 01-08-2013, 03:41 AM   #49
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Panupat
A little more question. If I buy RenderMan for Maya, which RenderMan product do I need for the render farms? RenderMan for Maya doesn't include any license for the farm right?

You need an RPS license for remote rendering and a tractor license for dispatching.
With that license you can even render single frames to the farm and view them live instead of rendering locally which is extremely useful, you just need the data drive on both machines set to the same directory, preferably a fast drive.
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Old 01-08-2013, 05:26 AM   #50
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Thanks Leif.

Am I understanding correctly that I only need 1 RPS license on the server while each render nodes need Tractor? Sorry for asking a lot of question but the the reseller in my country isn't responding to my questions :(
 
Old 01-08-2013, 05:30 AM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Panupat
Thanks Leif.

Am I understanding correctly that I only need 1 RPS license on the server while each render nodes need Tractor? Sorry for asking a lot of question but the the reseller in my country isn't responding to my questions :(

1 rps and tractor license per machine.
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Old 01-08-2013, 03:24 PM   #52
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I just wanted to thank everyone who posted to this thread. It's one of those rare ones where I just learned a tonne and I truly appreciate it!
 
Old 01-09-2013, 12:15 AM   #53
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can you read glossy reflections from a point cloud using the all purpose shader through slim or the hyper shade yet?

last time I used rms I was forced to raytrace reflections as I couldn't find an out of the box / artist friendly work around.
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:34 AM   #54
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickrowan
can you read glossy reflections from a point cloud using the all purpose shader through slim or the hyper shade yet?

last time I used rms I was forced to raytrace reflections as I couldn't find an out of the box / artist friendly work around.


Kind of, you can install the laika shaders in a couple of minutes and have glossy refractions and reflections with the AP shaders.
The new GP shaders only have point cloud functionality for sss and gi. Anything else is raytraced. There is a new raytracing workflow, so it makes sense I guess...
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:11 AM   #55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by leif3d
Kind of, you can install the laika shaders in a couple of minutes and have glossy refractions and reflections with the AP shaders.
The new GP shaders only have point cloud functionality for sss and gi. Anything else is raytraced. There is a new raytracing workflow, so it makes sense I guess...


fair enough. I know they are pushing for a new raytracing workflow and that's what most people and studios seem too want from it but personally I wont raytrace with renderman if I have the option. I prefer using renderman for its strengths.

I would like too see alot of the secret sauce/advanced work flows that places use more accessible/out of the box / less clunky or even just documented better for the common artist. If these trickled down too rsm like the laika shaders it would make it an even better package for artists and separate if from the competition.

Point clouds are one of its strenghts I think at this stage the GP shader and lights should be able too read everything off it from rms.

Can you set id, noise etc aovs from the hypershade with the GP? that would be awesome. I know you can do it in slim but it took a while too figure out.

Slim/renderman does take a while too get get your head into but is very power and I guess you don't need too be that technical once in the slim/renderman mindset. the official forum and support where top notch.
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:02 PM   #56
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Quote:
can you read glossy reflections from a point cloud using the all purpose shader through slim or the hyper shade yet?


Brickmaps are probably a better choice to handle this - fortunately RSL should be mostly agnostic about the input file, so AP "should" work (disclaimer : it's been a while since i used RMS).
 
Old 03-21-2013, 11:28 PM   #57
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Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickrowan
fair enough. I know they are pushing for a new raytracing workflow and that's what most people and studios seem too want from it but personally I wont raytrace with renderman if I have the option. I prefer using renderman for its strengths.

I would like too see alot of the secret sauce/advanced work flows that places use more accessible/out of the box / less clunky or even just documented better for the common artist. If these trickled down too rsm like the laika shaders it would make it an even better package for artists and separate if from the competition.

Point clouds are one of its strenghts I think at this stage the GP shader and lights should be able too read everything off it from rms.

Can you set id, noise etc aovs from the hypershade with the GP? that would be awesome. I know you can do it in slim but it took a while too figure out.

Slim/renderman does take a while too get get your head into but is very power and I guess you don't need too be that technical once in the slim/renderman mindset. the official forum and support where top notch.


ive just used rms4 and I must say well done! the new workflow is great, out of the box and very easy to setup. Also raytraced motion blur is very fast. nice work I take it all back and would recommend it to any small shop, freelancer or hobbist.
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Old 03-21-2013, 11:28 PM   #58
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