Best renderer for photoreal interior scenes?


#1

Wanting some suggestions, speed is also a consideration. I’ve been using MR but really only because it’s the Maya default.


#2

if speed is a consideration, go with V-Ray. Maxwell produces more realistic light (I use both renderers) but V-Ray is much faster since you can control everything (sampling, biased stuff).

Don’t waste your time learning mental ray in Maya unless you are looking for a generalist job.


#3

Also, don’t waste your time listening to CGBeige. He’s biased and has various paid agendas and rarely says anything worthwhile.

mental ray can do anything you need it to do; just takes some patience, research, and persistence. If you’re looking for a more photorealistic renderer, there are none. Some can rival mental ray for quality, but none are “better”.


#4

yes, I’m on the Pixologic, Autodesk, Next Limit, Chaos Group, Adobe payrolls… :rolleyes:

Infernal said himself that he’ll be switching to V-Ray but is just angry because he can’t afford it yet. I know how to use mental ray - I learned it first. It’s just a steep learning curve and then you realize it’s broken for what you want it for so you wasted a lot of time learning it. And this has nothing to do with mental ray’s quality - it’s fine, it’s just that mental ray in Maya is a crappy implementation.

mental ray for Maya: iRay, linear workflow and passes by 2023. We swear.

Meanwhile, V-Ray RT for Maya is going into beta testing next week and it’s a free update for owners of V-Ray for Maya.


#5

I love mentalray . It has been or primary renderer since a couple of years . No doubt it can produce renders as effiicient to speed and quality to any render engine in the market ; In the hand of an experienced 3d artist . Very helpful community on Cgtalk and other forums ! .

Mentalimages has spent years integrating mentalray in Maya , still no good compared to Max and Softimage . Vray can already render painteffects :slight_smile: .

Vray IS more artist oriented . Vray IS more ArchRender friendly .Huge resource library available . Is our primary render for ArchiVis project for the very reason . It simple/easily produced great results . . like no brainer .

But in the end It also depends on the Artist himself .

If you have the time ; I would recommend giving MR a go , it can do it and comes integrated . But If u have the money and avoid some headaches , go VRAY .

Another little point to add . Browse the forums . You will find “vray like interiors in Mentalray” . “maxwell like renders in Mentalray” :stuck_out_tongue: not the other way around . I wonder why :\ .


#6

Interesting… any idea why Maya users get it for free but Max users have to pay?


#7

Infernal said himself that he’ll be switching to V-Ray but is just angry because he can’t afford it yet. I know how to use mental ray - I learned it first. It’s just a steep learning curve and then you realize it’s broken for what you want it for so you wasted a lot of time learning it. And this has nothing to do with mental ray’s quality - it’s fine, it’s just that mental ray in Maya is a crappy implementation.

I totally agree with you, only there’s no anger here, silly. Just pointing out your perpetual agendas for the OP so he was aware of your endless bias. But I do agree with you; mental ray for Maya has a huge learning curve, and at the end of that curve: workarounds at best for all the broken functionality. The lack of any decent internal material library alone is preposterous! After six years working with it, I still have a pathetic library of MR-ready materials, and when you go to use most of those in newer versions there’s all kinds of bugs to behold… It’s brutal.


#8

It’s going to be free for Max users as well. I guess it was just the early adopters who had to pay for V-Ray RT for Max. Don’t know if they’ll be compensated in any way. Can’t wait to get my hands on it - Vladimir from Chaos Group was demoing it at SIGGRAPH and it looks great. The best part: you don’t have to use different materials between the software and GPU renderer. Unlike mental ray and iRay. It’s going to make scene setup a breeze.


#9

The best part: you don’t have to use different materials between the software and GPU renderer. Unlike mental ray and iRay. It’s going to make scene setup a breeze.

That does sound excellent! I don’t have high hopes for iRay; from the name itself, we can extrapolate the value of that silliness. And having to use different materials alone is a big downfall - as if there weren’t enough discrepancies in mental ray already!


#10

ya, it was clearly a poorly-thought out approach. The quality looks great but who’s going to use half a renderer for staging only to have to redo the work later for production software shaders? This way with V-Ray RT, you at least get to use it until something just isn’t doable in RT (SSS or something) and then fall back to software. After using Octane and seeing what it’s like to do sun and sky in realtime, it’s hard going back to simple scene GL previews. I’m glad V-Ray RT is OpenCL too - I’m going to test it out with the Mac version of the Radeon 5870 soon. Finally an ATI card with enough stream cores to actually use for stuff…


#11

That does sound excellent! I don’t have high hopes for iRay; from the name itself, we can extrapolate the value of that silliness. And having to use different materials alone is a big downfall - as if there weren’t enough discrepancies in mental ray already!

if you guys didn’t see the nvidia presentation at siggraph you can check it out. they go over physx in max and the last chunk of the video is iray in max. after watching the iray demo i wasn’t that impressed at all. the iray demo starts at 7:42

http://area.autodesk.com/siggraph/video22


#12

I’ve been a mentalray user for god knows how long. I’ve gone through the struggles and rewards of learning all the tricks, nooks and crannies of the renderer. A couple of days ago I decided to give Vray a try. I’m banging my head against the wall for not trying it earlier. IMO not only for archviz world, but for smaller studios, or studios without an army of coders, Vray is also an excellent production renderer. Dont get me wrong, I got a lot of love for mentalray, and I’ve even been crazy enough to trust mentalray for Maya in actual heavy production work as a primary render. And most of the headache inducing problems mentalray for Maya has, Vray manages easily…i.e. render passes. Vray may not be perfect either, but Im starting to like it!


#13

Can you talk a bit more about V-Ray RT for Maya CGBeige? I understand you were at Siggraph where they demo-ed this?
Was it running inside of Maya (the V-Ray framebuffer)? Does it run on ATI cards on OSX?


#14

http://vray.info/news/article.asp?ID=464

Apparently it was running inside maya. And since it’s working with OpenCL, and not only Cuda, ATI video cards are supported. OSX is also supported so I guess a combination of those two would also work :slight_smile:


#15

Honestly, Vray has the best quality/rendertime. I preffer Mental ray for some particular reasons, but if you can afford, Vray is faster than MR, and easier to learn. For advanced techniques, new shader model implementation MR is much better, but for daily work in Arch previs, Vray is your beast :wink:


#16

ya, like in the screenshot - it runs in the floating VFB window. They were using 3 GTX 470 cards I think but it is OpenCL based so ATI/AMD cards will be fine on any platform if they have OpenCL support. I’m going to be reviewing the 5870 for OS X when it comes out soon and I want to use V-Ray RT as a benchmark. It’s known that the Fermi cards are still much faster for CUDA/OpenCL though - I’m expecting the 5870 to be about as fast as my GTX 285 from what I’ve seen. But this is the good thing about OpenCL - you can mix and match cards so I could just use the 5870 for the faster OpenGL/Maya performance and keep the GTX 285 in there as well for added OpenCL cores. The heat is an issue though, so that’s why a Fermi Quadro is a better choice for really long GPU renders.


#17

dot87 & CGBeige, thanks for the info. Sounds real good.

CGBeige: the 5870, that’s the one that will come with the new 2010 Mac Pro’s right? Could one hook up more than one of those cards in the new Mac Pro and have it contribute to OpenCL/V-Ray?
Are all V-Ray shaders supported in RT? And how much of a visual difference can one expect when switching from RT to the main V-ray renderer.


#18

ya, it’s a BTO option in the new Mac Pro and presumably AMD will sell it solo like the 4870 as well. I’ve seen that some people have flashed XFX cards for Windows running with the drivers already (with some caveats). Ya, you can pair multiple cards (and CPU cores) with OpenCL very easily. Just keep in mind that the memory doesn’t stack like computer memory - at least that’s my experience with Octane. You can only use the max memory of your single card.

The only shaders I actually saw running in RT on the GPU were the V-Ray material (the V-Ray equivalent of mia_material_x_passes - only passes work) and an emitter shader. You can see a screenshot in my article here:

http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/news/2010/07/gpu-renderers-proliferate-show-newfound-maturity.ars?comments=1#comments-bar

edit: oops, that’s Max. Anyway, it was on display.

I haven’t used V-Ray RT and only had a brief demo so it’s hard to say exactly where the limitations are. I doubt you’ll see things like caustics, SSS, instancing and motion blur with the first release, but I could be wrong.


#19

Bummer about instancing support.


#20

Thanks CGBeige.
Shame about the memory limitations. Just when our CPU based rendering solutions are getting access to decent amounts of Ram (16+GB) in 64bit environments. It’ll be hard to throttle back on that once more. Good for look-devving individual assets or small scenes I guess.