is vray now a serious choice for productions?


first of all, i dont want to start a thread about comparations, or something like that,

i was reading a report on tecnology used in the tron movie, and they said that, in digital domain they used vray for a lot of things, including the virtual face of clu… i know they have their own render engines, but since v ray is well known to be easy to use, fast, and very powerfull, and now that is avaliable for maya, i wonder if v ray is now a serious choice for rendering in big productions…

so, is vray now a serious choice for big productions apart from mental ray?


yes v-ray is a serious option for production


Vray is good, buy it!


Yes it is!

best renderer I’ve used so far :slight_smile:


I am assuming from your example that by “big productions” you are talking about film? If so, then no, I don’t see it becoming popular. Mental Ray isn’t used much in big vfx productions either - the top dog for rendering in film is Renderman. And due to Renderman’s current deep roots in studious, I don’t see that changing any time soon. Occasionally other renderers might be used for a few shots here and there, but the bulk of the rendering will still be done with the studio’s main rendering pipeline. Studios don’t just suddenly switch renderers.


Why you don’t see it becoming popular? I believe it already is.

the only pro’s I see so far from Renderman are its MB, DOF, Slim and deep shadows.

Nowdays computers are damn fast, and with the RT engine being developed for Maya (doesn’t work very well today), I think it has a lot of potential in the near future. Some people don’t like to let go some things because it took too long to understand.

Also, I think Vray’s support is much better than Pixar renderman’s. (yea, you didn’t say Pixar’s but I’m guessing that’s the most popular).


I explained why in my post already. Renderman is already deeply rooted in studio pipelines. You don’t just suddenly switch renderers, because that has huge ramifications which trickle down the entire pipeline.

It’s not a case of:

Some people don’t like to let go some things because it took too long to understand.

It’s a case of the fact that a studio’s entire render pipeline will be structured around their current tool of choice, which as I mentioned already, is Renderman for most big studios (ie the studios that work on the aforementioned “big productions”). Switching is not just a matter of “hey guys, let’s use this now!” because all their proprietary tools will have been written around the renderer currently in use. Furthermore, if you switch tools, you then have to hire all new people to use them, and/or retrain all your current staff. This is not really feasible when you consider the kinds of production schedules and budgets that studios work with. This is over and above the fact that the studio has already made a huge financial investment in their current renderer, which makes a switch all the more undesirable. Why pay a huge amount of money to swap renderers when your current renderer is already tried and tested on loads of previous productions in-house?

And I disagree about Vray already being popular. I know it’s popular in the arch viz field, but DD’s use of it in Tron is the first I’ve heard of it being used in film. I am not saying there aren’t other studios using it, because there may well be, but I certainly wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s popular.

Also, I think Vray’s support is much better than Pixar renderman’s. (yea, you didn’t say Pixar’s but I’m guessing that’s the most popular).

Considering you don’t appear to have much experience of Renderman in studios (I’m assuming this, please correct me if I am wrong), I’m not sure how you can say this.


I asked why you don’t see the posibility of vray not becoming popular, not why renderman is.

what I said about people not wanting to switch things is not different itself, but just at a different scale and involves more money than making that desicion for yourself.

and about the support, I’m talking about the forums.

But I agree with you, It’s much more implemented in big production studios and is more flexible.

Now, about its potential, it is for the people to decide, and time will tell.


But it’s the same answer :wink: Studios already have pipelines built around their current software. They’re not likely to just suddenly replace their current renderers with Vray.

Renderers like Vray and others, as I mentioned before, are sometimes picked up for certain tasks for various reasons, but they’re not brought in as replacements for what’s already currently in place. Because of this, I say that the popularity of the renderer is not likely to increase significantly, because it’s not going to be brought in as a big gun, just a supplement for certain tasks.


Sure, but that’s now.

The same was said about Zbrush


Well no, not really. When ZBrush originally came out, it was an illustration tool, and was therefore not on the radar for big studios at all. It then changed somewhat to become a sculpting application, and it offered something that no other commercially available tool at the time did. Hence, it was picked up by studios.

With renderers, the same cannot be said. At least, not to a large degree. Renderers all do more or less the same thing, they just have different implementations, workflows and approaches. Truly unique features in renderers these days are quite rare, thus making studio adoption of the tool quite different.

In addition to this, ZBrush does something which can far more easily be incorporated into a complex studio pipeline than a renderer. So it’s not an appropriate comparison.

Over the last ten years we’ve seen numerous new renderers emerge in the market, and yet throughout, Renderman has stayed steadily as the main choice in big studios. There is no compelling reason to suggest that this will change in the near future, for all the reasons I’ve already stated.

I don’t know why you’re so determined to argue against this. There is no way to say this without sounding really pompous, so please forgive me in advance, but I can only imagine that you’ve never actually worked in any big film studio. Otherwise you wouldn’t be arguing like this.


Yep, your point of view seems right.

Going back to the original quesiton, the answer is Yes. Vray is ready for big productions.


It is already being advertised in jobs for maya vfx.
The companies using Renderman will keep their pipelines due to cost creating them, and keeeping staff who can use the software. It will be interesting to see if time constraints, budget squeezing and an abundance of available vray artists will affect that. As mentioned, Large Vfx companies hold the pipeline as sacrosanct, its more or less bespoke to each firm, with off the shelf software having little to do with the versions used in production, they have been that customised, (was not that long ago that some large vfx companies were still trying to use nurbs for characters because of the infrastructure developed for them had not been milked long enough), but this wont stop the very same companies trying out new software for smaller shots and commercials. I think some people should actually look at version 2 for max before being so sure about these things and see how quickly Chaosgroup are developing stuff.
The advances it is making are leaving other renderers standing, athough breaking through to high end vfx will be difficult, its not impossible. It will be on all of the major dcc programs within a couple of years. And the StandAlone is still in progress.
About 5 years ago I was telling a friend of mine, who now does lighting for film in houdini, about Vray and was shot down and told it was not a contender, well he was the first person to tell me that DD were using Vray to do Tron. And the trend will continue.


The support on pixar’s forums is actually pretty good - they (the pixar guys) do a pretty good job of responding to bugs and feature requests.

The reasons for using renderman typically revolve around extensibility, speed, scalability and art-directability.


Leigh pretty much hit the nail on the head. A lot of software is “production ready” or could be used by studios in major productions but that doesn’t mean it will be used.

As Leigh said, studios don’t and can’t just jump ship because something might be newer or have more features. Hell, something could actually be better, but when the entire pipeline is in place, you can’t just switch stuff out.

So, V-Ray might be ready for the big-time, but that doesn’t mean it is going to be used in the big-time :slight_smile:


The only exception to this seems to be “Arnold” as it has been reported that Sony is now 100% “Arnold” house.

It’s like with any other piece of software that does stuff like other software but does it in a bit different way. In the end, it all comes to the actual single studio making the decision. Nobody sane will go for the new/cool/awesome thing just like that when you’ve got hundreds of employees, thousands of tools, millions of assets and billions of man hours built around whatever it is they have been using so far. That is unless, it’s really really really worth it.

But I must say, from the vRay 2.0 feature videos, it seems quite impressive. I simply love the LightSelect render element. It’s just a so natural companion to objectID though probably much harder to implement. I’m sure we’ll see more and more work done with it and good one at that. Blur switching to vRay is certainly THE REASON to, at least, think about it.

Still, when I read about point cloud based lighting and colour bleeding in Renderman…it’s just :drool:


To put an even sharper point on it, I’ve been in game studios who couldn’t even upgrade to current versions of the same software because all the tools and exporters and such were stable and proven with a specific version of software. It’s not even a different package and they still couldn’t switch without significant cost and loss of production time.

Jumping to a whole new package for a studio that’s heavily invested in an existing pipeline is even more costly, problematic and risky, no matter what the advertised features. Why is that such a difficult thing for you to comprehend? It’s just the way it is.


Vray is no as flexible as mr, it doesn’t have production shaders for integration. But when smart people will put their hands on it, vray will shine. It’s just a matter in whose hands the tools are.


Im guesing it is mutch harder to make a switch to another software whene your a big procution house, but it does happend

i know sony made the switch to Arnold a few years ago,
and didnt ILM switch from ther inhouse 3d software to maya a few years ago ?

It could be a hugh cost for a big production house to make the switch i can imagin, but if it saves you money and time inn the long run it may be the right choic.

you can read about why Sony making the switch here


But Arnold was largely developed at Sony Imageworks. It was hardly a case of them just suddenly buying thousands of licenses and changing their entire pipeline.

As for ILM, they made the switch from Softimage to Maya over a decade ago.