Vray vs. C4D Physical Render Engine


I had a play with position passes when I was doing the review for c4d r14, and i got it to work in after effects, but tbh, for most workflows Nuke uses it better.


I cannot seem to extract z-depth info from my exr file. Can you give a brief workflow on how you got it to work? I get what appears to be a correct interpretation in AE, but I would think Extractor would be able to create something that resembles a traditional depth map? Is this not the case?


ok, so, none of this works with the physical renderer. You have to use the standard renderer to generate RPF, RLA and OpenEXR. Took a good portion of my day to figure out that was the problem. Make a note.


Ugh. Total garbage. I already knew that .RPF & .RLA don’t work out of the physical render engine. But I was holding out hope that OpenEXR would work. I realize the physical renders are pretty, and all, but no professional (in their right mind) is going to give up such crucial post-controls.

This brings me back to my original topic:

Does Vray output a fully functioning .RPF/.RLA or Open EXR file format? And, just as important, is the Vray render significantly faster than that (on a comparable scene) of the C4D Physical engine???

Thanks, everyone.


Faster, yes. Don’t know about the data formats. You should start a thread in their forums, they’re quite responsive and good. vray for c4d site


Sure. Thanks. I was hoping for a little additional impartiality here. But I’m sure I can get good info there, too.


right, but there are some very helpful people over there that I don’t normally see here, so it wouldn’t hurt.


I used a plugin, but can’t remember which one (sorry, it was literally a 5 minute experiment) aescipts has a couple of useful ones, pixel cloud looks the most interesting especially with the death of normality


What exactly isn’t working with PR and OpenEXR. I can easily extract depth data from an EXR rendered with PR. Could you elaborate your problem?


We’ve been using a VRay > OpenEXR > Composite multipass in Nuke work flow for two years. So yes, VRay supports OpenEXR, including multilayered files. With the upcoming VRay update multipass will only get better.

In my experience for simple scenes C4D is probably a little faster than VRay. As soon as you start using blurred reflection and GI VRay is the only way to go (ducks head, this is based on my experience of using VRay for product and interior rendering, your experience may vary).


We moved entirely to Fusion over a year ago and are thrilled with it. It destroys After Effects for visual effects work.

Also the position pass stuff works extremely well with it- it has tools for interactively masking areas of a scene as well as interactive volumetric fog (with turbulence and light support) and more.

It’s also even cheaper compared to Nuke when you throw in Nuke X and furnace (which you have to to match Fusion’s feature set.)

We use Fusion, Dimension (which is like voodoo magic for some shots- amazingly powerful optical flow tools) and Generation for project management. Honestly, they’ve revolutionized things for us.


Are you using Fusion primarily for live action comps or full CG scenes?

What do you use for a tracking solution? I know it has a very decent 2D tracker, but nothing in the ways of a planar/camera tracker. Do you go the Syntheyes route?


I’m curious to know the same. I hear about Fusion and Nuke, but I never encounter any outfits or immediate colleagues who use either. I’m guessing these are more in the threshold of special effects, and heavy-duty composting? I have never once seen anything but AfterEffects used in broadcast branding and design. I think there may be a crucial divide between needs and strengths with some of these solutions, based on the targeted work.


Even with pure-3D/design compositing, I think Fusion & nuke would be helpful. Whether those extra features would be worth it for someone focussing on non-realistic graphic work…that’s another story.

For myself, I can think of several situations where I’ve had to render out a brand new element to stick into my 3D scene, and have then had to render out a gazillion masks just to make sure this new object integrates correctly. With the easy to use position pass in Fusion or Nuke, the compositing (theoretically) would be a breeze.


Gotcha. Thanks.
Besides broadcast, the majority of my work revolves around product visualization work. So, high-quality, hyper-real is what I strive for with those kinds of animations. Which, is why I’m considering Vray. That being said, I almost never deal with full CG scenes / environments, nor matched compositing in practical scenes. Most of the product work (thankfully) lives in limbo, or at least inserted into blurred environments. So, I don’t have to concern myself (too much) with the need for keeping a handle on 100s of random components. That is, unless the client’s product has that many pieces. But even then, it’s generally a single output, with maybe a handful of object buffers for whatever, in AE.


We use it for both, post comping CG in general gives so much more flexibility to an image.

We use Mocha and Syntheyes. Fusion’s 2D tracker is great for 2D stuff though. You can track a shot in Mocha and then just paste the resulting nodes into Fusion.


Get Vray. That is the easiest answer…it is worth it alone for the sexy multi-layer specular.
But everything else stated as well. GI+Blurry effects Vray gets my vote hands down.
And it already sees a lot of production in the C4D world. The majority of Aixsponza stuff if Vray…even a lot of stuff on the MAXON site is Vray.

The last few music videos I worked on we used Vray as well.

and to end with what I always say…a dedicated app will always be better…as a developer only has to worry about 1 aspect of the whole pipeline, allowing them to focus their efforts.

I have NOT tried M4D though…and so this could be an avenue of exploration…and they offer a demo.


So stuff in gallery?
If not, maxon don’t like to develop for people and stand by principle of “as is” or indifferent software. We can see really winning thing in c4d or not, hope, can we?


I think I speak for a fair number, when I ask, what?


Thanks. But the nice-looking renders from Vray aren’t in question. My entire concern, and one of the primary reasons I started this thread, was to determine how well Vray would fit into my existing style of production, and more importantly, post-production. I’m frankly extremely disappointed that there is no demo version available. I can’t remember the last time I wasn’t able to try out a piece of software before purchasing, and that includes offerings from some extremely small outfits.