Help with Mental Ray and Render Farm Details

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  08 August 2011
Help with Mental Ray and Render Farm Details

our school wants to build a new lab..

let's say we're getting 30 workstations with 1 quadcore processors per workstation and hyperthreading enabled = 30 quad CPUS (with HT) = 240 threads

we're also getting a 15 node renderfarm with 2x quadcore processors per node and no hyperthreading = 30 quad CPUS (no HT) = 120 threads

so in total we'll have 60 processors on our network and a total of 360 threads

we're planning to get 33 licenses of Maya Unlimited Education Version

we want to use Muster Unlimited as our render manager

We want to use all our workstations and render nodes with Mental Ray.

Will Mental Ray satellite be enough to achieve this? Do we have enough mental ray lisences or do we need to purchase standalone versions? Can render a single hi-res image using the whole network for example?

  08 August 2011
Satellite is intended to be used for interactive feedback for artists in lighting and look development. This is not the most efficient means to render an animation.

Render one frame per node when rendering for output on a farm.

One license of Maya (floating license) should get you 5 rendering licenses or 5 nodes (mental ray)

I would suggest rendering in strips on a single machine (or maybe strips on multiple machines) for a large image. Satellite works by distributing buckets. That may be less efficient. If you tune correctly, a single machine can handle a large image with enough RAM.
My opinions are always my own...and maybe a friend's, but never my employer's.
  08 August 2011
thanks for the reply but my main question is

With what we 're getting. Will we be able to use all our workstations including the render farm for rendering? Will Muster be able to utilize our whole network for rendering? Distributed at least.
  08 August 2011
If you are using floating licenses of Maya, you should be (Ask Autodesk to be sure)

You mentioned Satellite, that is different than using a license of Maya to farm render. Hence the reason I was making the distinction. Distributed bucket rendering (Satellite) is not the same as rendering an animation on the farm with a manager like Muster.

You would have to see if Muster supports rendering portions of an image on slaves as opposed to entire frames.

That's more of a Muster question, but looks like you will have the licenses.
My opinions are always my own...and maybe a friend's, but never my employer's.
  08 August 2011
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