multiple rendering or renderfarm

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  12 December 2012
multiple rendering or renderfarm

we're a small CG group of 5 (with the possibility of expanding up to 15). The scenes we're rendering aren't particularly huge in render times....maybe .5 hrs to 1hr per animation...and we'll probably be ramping up to making 3 animations per person per machine per here's the question...
I'm totally new to the thought of getting a small render farm ( if we even need it ) but certainly, any time rendering is time not making animations.
My first question is this...
Can I set up Maya (on each persons workstation) to render off a 'queue' so when we go home, each person can render their scenes at night....even when they have multiple scenes?
I'm just trying to avoid having to move into the 'renderfarm' arena if we don't have to.
But if I have to, then that'll be the next question....
Thanks in advance,
  12 December 2012
Well the poor man's renderqueue is to use a batch file, assuming you're on windows.

- Oh no, it's me -
  12 December 2012
Maya itself comes with Backburner which should be able to queue renders... I've never used it so don't quote me on that. At my studio we use Thinkbox Deadline.
  12 December 2012
Originally Posted by ristopuukko: Well the poor man's renderqueue is to use a batch file, assuming you're on windows.

command line render scripts work on all platforms.

but for something like this, you would probably want something that can be scheduled, like Deadline.
  12 December 2012
If you are rendering on individual machines, batch scripts work great - you can even add timers to start them. I have some python scripts to manage batch rendering. I shared them in this post, if you find them useful and need more info, let me know here or a pm.
If you are network rendering, you can try Backburner, but good luck with that. Some people get it to work, but I've wasted many hours with precious few frames to show for it. As a caveat, here is a blog post discussing the use of backburner on the cloud at Amazon, if you could get that to work, you'd come out an order of magnitude ahead of all other options. Else, I'd recommend trying some of the render farm apps.
If you decide to use a render service, I've had great success with ReBUS.
If animation couldn't change the world, it wouldn't be such a Micky-Mouse place.
  12 December 2012
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