AMD Radeon ProRender render engine

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  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by Blinny: The downside is I don't see C4D mentioned anywhere in terms of what has been or soon will be updated.



Typical. I would expect nothing different at this point in the game. It seems ProRender is a little more integrated in C4D than it is in other apps (being one of the built-in renderers), so development and release will probably lag a bit for us.
 
  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by interactiveBoy: Typical. I would expect nothing different at this point in the game. It seems ProRender is a little more integrated in C4D than it is in other apps (being one of the built-in renderers), so development and release will probably lag a bit for us.

With apologies to shattering that assumption: ProRender in Blender is just as, if not better integrated than the version in C4D 19. Full node-based, and it offers pretty much the same level of integration as the native Cycles renderer. ProRender in Blender even comes with a built-in material library to get started easily. After testing both versions, in my opinion ProRender in C4D is somewhat awkwardly integrated. Unexpectedly, ProRender in Blender is easier to use than ProRender in C4D, because of all the caveats in the current C4D version (don't do this, don't do that, and many missing features).

I see Maxon's proprietary control over ProRender's integration as a major drawback: users of Max, Maya, Blender, and SolidWorks get immediate free updates, while C4D users will have to wait until a new version of C4D is released. That may take months, if not another year - at which point ProRender users of other packages have enjoyed free updates, and C4D users will have to pay once more for a feature that wasn't usable in V19. I really really hope that Maxon will update at least ProRender in dot releases/patches, because it feels unfair to their users.

Hopefully this time Maxon will reintroduce the (free) X.5 release cycle. I loved those in the past.
 
  10 October 2017
ProRender will probably speed up a lot. The render engine is only about 1 year old if I am not mistaken. I think someone from AMD posted that on a forum.

ProRender is still a baby, basically. Just learning to walk at this point.

What is most interesting about ProRender - will AMD hardware-accelerate ProRender it in its future GPUs?

I think that the answer is probably YES, because AMD has ZERO to gain financially from developing a free render engine and just giving it to people.

The only reason I can think of for AMD to develop a production renderer is that future AMD GPUs will ship with dedicated pathtracing hardware circuitry that makes ProRender fly.

In other words, ProRender is basically a vehicle for making DCC/CAD/CG/3D professionals buy AMD Radeon GPUs in the future - because AMD GPUs will speed up ProRender tremendously once they have the hardware capability to do so.
 
  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by skeebertus: ProRender will probably speed up a lot. The render engine is only about 1 year old if I am not mistaken. I think someone from AMD posted that on a forum.

ProRender is still a baby, basically. Just learning to walk at this point.

What is most interesting about ProRender - will AMD hardware-accelerate ProRender it in its future GPUs?

I think that the answer is probably YES, because AMD has ZERO to gain financially from developing a free render engine and just giving it to people.

The only reason I can think of for AMD to develop a production renderer is that future AMD GPUs will ship with dedicated pathtracing hardware circuitry that makes ProRender fly.

In other words, ProRender is basically a vehicle for making DCC/CAD/CG/3D professionals buy AMD Radeon GPUs in the future - because AMD GPUs will speed up ProRender tremendously once they have the hardware capability to do so.

Do we know for sure current iterations of Vega don't already have some type of hardware accleration features for this renderer? Information remains fairly sparse out there. But I think what you're saying makes sense so if not currently, perhaps Gen 2 Vega cards (I believe AMD intends to evolve that architecture for several iterations) sometime next year will have that capability. Carefully considering a post-holiday gift to myself of an eGPU and Vega card but waiting to see what happens with all of these variables including Mac driver quality.
 
  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by hvanderwegen: With apologies to shattering that assumption: ProRender in Blender is just as, if not better integrated than the version in C4D 19. Full node-based, and it offers pretty much the same level of integration as the native Cycles renderer. ProRender in Blender even comes with a built-in material library to get started easily. After testing both versions, in my opinion ProRender in C4D is somewhat awkwardly integrated. Unexpectedly, ProRender in Blender is easier to use than ProRender in C4D, because of all the caveats in the current C4D version (don't do this, don't do that, and many missing features).

I see Maxon's proprietary control over ProRender's integration as a major drawback: users of Max, Maya, Blender, and SolidWorks get immediate free updates, while C4D users will have to wait until a new version of C4D is released. That may take months, if not another year - at which point ProRender users of other packages have enjoyed free updates, and C4D users will have to pay once more for a feature that wasn't usable in V19. I really really hope that Maxon will update at least ProRender in dot releases/patches, because it feels unfair to their users.

Hopefully this time Maxon will reintroduce the (free) X.5 release cycle. I loved those in the past.

That's actually what I was trying to say. I just didn't pick the right words. I meant because Maxon is including it as a core part of the package, (instead of a plug-in on a different development cycle) it will probably lag behind a bit. So my use of the phrase "more integrated" didn't mean better implemented, but rather requiring an update to the whole app not just a plug-in.
 
  10 October 2017
Yeah, let's hope this works out better than Pyrocluster and Thinking Particles....
Having control over the sources and adapting them might allow Maxon to integrate better and depper, but the downsides you described are a bit scarry and remind me of the Cebas collaboration...
But since PR seems to be more central than PC and TP, I guess chances are good that there will be more regular updates
 
  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by christianS: Yeah, let's hope this works out better than Pyrocluster and Thinking Particles....
Having control over the sources and adapting them might allow Maxon to integrate better and depper, but the downsides you described are a bit scarry and remind me of the Cebas collaboration...
But since PR seems to be more central than PC and TP, I guess chances are good that there will be more regular updates

Yeah those are scary analogies in this context but as you say, a more integral component of the application which hopefully means MAXON updates it more than once a year. I don't think they necessarily need to do a .5 release either. They should integrate it with one of the larger, planned stability patches they do every year.
 
  10 October 2017
Quote: About that, what would be the minimum GPU you should get to actually take advantage of GPU speed over a normal current gen i7 or Ryzen CPU ?

Which i7 or Ryzen? Keep in mind you can get 18 core i7s now and 16 core Ryzen.

Generally I'd put the minimum point for gpu rendering to be worthwhile at a geforce 960 / 1060. But thats the minimum to consider it being worth your time. You really want to be looking at the 980/1080 cards for it to have enough advantage that its worth accepting all the limitations, and thats assuming a 4core chip. If youre rocking an 8 core or more then with pro render youll likely find physical render can get a better quality in a shorter amount of time.
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Matthew O'Neill
www.3dfluff.com

Last edited by imashination : 10 October 2017 at 09:41 PM.
 
  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by Creattive: Off-topic, but can you please elaborate how you do this in C4D or provide me a link where I can read more about faking GI, AO and sky reflections?
I've not put anything out with these specific topics, but its more about using the old fashioned techniques we used to do back in the day before GI and AO were around. For GI, essentially just careful placement of lights to emulate what the bounced light would have done, or placing lights inside luminant geometry to give the impression it is emitting light.

Depending on the scene, you can sort of fake AO through low quality soft shadows. If you play with the shadow sample resolution, radius and bias, you can get dark shadows to creep out from under objects to give an AO-ish impression, but that depends a lot on how much in your scene is animated.

Sky reflections is nothing more than a checkbox. Render settings > options > limit sky/floor reflections. Instead of reflecting everything, it just tells cinema to use nothing more than the sky. Obviously this isnt entirely right, but in many motion graphics type scene you can get away with just reflecting the sky. For example here all the chrome and screen reflections are just a sky, none of the scene reflects with the scene itself:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4de5mVd8rlM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89gmPTzEj6Q

Though strictly speaking this is another render option, this animation is just a capture of the opengl viewport, it isnt really rendered.
__________________
Matthew O'Neill
www.3dfluff.com
 
  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by BubblegumDimension: Hi Matthew - these techniques that you useto speed up C4d's CPU rendering - do you cover them in the video tutorial available for purchase on your website?
Not specifically these bits mentioned, but I have a video dedicated to speeding everything up. Its made in R16 but 100% of it still works.
https://www.3dfluff.com/video/r16speed/
__________________
Matthew O'Neill
www.3dfluff.com
 
  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by Blinny: Do we know for sure current iterations of Vega don't already have some type of hardware accleration features for this renderer? Information remains fairly sparse out there. But I think what you're saying makes sense so if not currently, perhaps Gen 2 Vega cards (I believe AMD intends to evolve that architecture for several iterations) sometime next year will have that capability. Carefully considering a post-holiday gift to myself of an eGPU and Vega card but waiting to see what happens with all of these variables including Mac driver quality.


I think AMD is going to try to popularize the plain software ProRender first. Get a few million people across various 3D apps to use it regularly.

Then you might see GPUs - perhaps professional FirePro GPUs only - that include hardware circuitry that accelerates the slowest, most processing power hungry functions in ProRender.

I think that this is why they called it Radeon ProRender - the renderer is a part of the Radeon family of GPU products.

When might this happen? I would assume that ProRender needs to be a) fairly widely used and b) have reached a full feature set expected of a production renderer
.
 
  10 October 2017
Yeah you're probably right about the size of the user base needing to be larger before they build it into their GPUs but who knows. Everything changing pretty fast these days. Hopefully MAXON offers some improved PR performance and features prior to R20 for people who made the jump. R18 and Cycles4D for me.
 
  10 October 2017
I've used ProRender for a few hours and have come up with the following:

I like the very simple render settings.
Finding the right kind of lights to use us a little tricky but once setup they work well.
On x2 GTX 980 it rendered a 2k interior in 8 minutes, noise free. I think that is very fast.

This is my main gripe so far. The materials.

The workflow is very confusing to me. does it use standard materials? the PBR presets seem to be standard mats with ProRender nodes in the slots.
I've recently done some testing with FStorm . The material setup is the epitome of simplicity and is very efective in producing realistic results.

I spent some time playing with gamma, colour mapping, contrast settings to get the ProRender image to look anything like right. I'm sure it's something that I'm doing wrong but it doesn't seem very clear how the material creation workflow is supposed to work.

Very impressed so far. Looking forward to some swift early stage development.
 
  10 October 2017
Originally Posted by danaustin84: I've used ProRender for a few hours and have come up with the following:

...
Very impressed so far. Looking forward to some swift early stage development.

That's the hope. And there seems to be early stage development going on, unfortunately it's "swift" for every platform but ours (so far). Probably due to the manner in which it is integrated in C4D, but we don't know for sure. Hopefully you guys will get a "holiday gift basket" from MAXON, only instead of sucktacular fruitcake and stale snacks you get 10 lbs of render in a 5 lb basket.
 
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