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Old 09-09-2004, 02:08 AM   #1
Darkware
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Default What is the best renderer?

What is the best renderer out of the ones you have to purchase? I assume it's Renderman since it costs the most, but what is your opinion?
Renderman - $3500
RenderDotC - $595-$2995
Air - $450
Mental Ray - $2,995 or $5,495 + $1000 or $2500 license (since I'd have to purchase it as a stand-alone product)

What is the best renderer out of the free ones?
Aqsis
Pixie
JRMan
Maya's default renderer (free since I obviously already own Maya)

The images I get through Maya are pretty good and I really haven't been able to analyze renders from different renderers to actually see the difference first hand.
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Old 09-09-2004, 09:48 AM   #2
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a lot of it is based on the person using the renderer. I mean renderman is "the best" but not only because of the renderer (you're renders wont automatically look better in renderman) but because of the whole rib and sl languages that go along with it.

So what I'm saying is that it's the artist and not the renderer i've seen beautiful stuff come out of the maya renderer....

I can't believe how much mental ray costs, can't you upgrade maya for that price!?

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Old 09-09-2004, 09:53 AM   #3
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I agree, PRman is the best. but given the cost.. and that it takes a lot of TD time.. MR is next best. why would you have to buy it stand alone ??
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Old 09-09-2004, 06:00 PM   #4
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hey thanks for the input. The reason I would have to buy MR seperately is because I'm guessing it would cost more to upgrade to a new version of Maya that actually comes with it. I'm actually several versions behind in my version of Maya, so I'd basically have to buy a brand new copy.

I suppose I'll just stick with the default Maya renderer for now though because if I do get something, I'll probably get something really good like Renderman or MR, but I don't have enough money for either right now because of college. :\

Perhaps another question I could ask is what makes a render better than another render? I know good lighting and tesselation and HDRI and blah blah blah, but what is the biggest difference between say the best Maya render and the best Rendman or Mental Ray render? Are images sharper? Do textures come out better? I really just don't know myself...
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Old 09-09-2004, 07:18 PM   #5
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You should give a look at Turtle Renderer, I have seen good things out of it.

Renderman is a standard, PhotoRealistic Renderman is the renderer that is sold. Its viewed as the best renderer because of its speed and motion blurs mostly.

When you want to pick a renderer, think about what you are going to do with it: stills or animation. In animation you need good motion blurs and speed. In stills its more toward lighting and feature to tweek the image.

Personnaly, I think I will use Maya as long as I can. Especialy since you have unlimited licence with it, this is great for render farms.
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Old 10-09-2004, 12:44 AM   #6
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Dark, Mutant scrached on something there that is inportant. Besides the speed and capability of PRman, and Mr. there not brand new, have a track record. And hold up better under animation than anything. They have good motion blur also.

Intresting to note, that lightwaves native render is considered advanced enufe to be listed in some comparisons with the other big 3.

more info in PM.
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Old 10-09-2004, 09:36 AM   #7
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unless you are running stuff out commercially I really can't see any reason for you to have to buy prman, one of it's main advantages is it's scalability and extensability and if you have no experience in it, it will seem like the most daunting thing in the world. Large studios use it because it allows them to control their rib(what actually gets rendered) generation, shader assignments, shader descriptions etc etc. For one person sitting at home messing around you definatley dont need prman.

Interestingly though you can now get prman for maya

https://renderman.pixar.com/products/tools/index.htm

It's a standalone license and doesnt use alfred etc. I think it's about $1000 but dont quote me on that. That would be a great way to get to learn renderman(which is a great skill if you are looking for a job!)

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Old 10-09-2004, 01:50 PM   #8
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The Turtle Renderer is great but it is not very expandable yet. There are limited Utility nodes still. Turtle is still a v1 package. It doesent support post process rendering no layered shaders or ramp shaders. Other than that has some great features that will rival the competition. you should definetly check them out. I have been testing there stuff for a bit and I am very impressed with some of the features. some big stuff I like at the moment

-ambience occlusion
-sub div rendering (take low poly model and automatically render Higher res)
-bump mapping allows multiple files into one node

There is alot more.
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