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#74895 by artmanvt2000
Tue Oct 02, 2018 12:50 pm
I would like to know what people are using for rendering software. We primarily use Sketchup to generate our 3D models. We have a version of Podium, which works well, but is time consuming to get light sources right.

With your response would you please do your best to answer the following questions:
1) Is it easy to learn?
2) Is there good tutorials, written or training videos, to learn the software?
3) What would you like it to do better?
4) How much does it cost?
#74908 by Mark Bell
Wed Oct 03, 2018 4:54 pm
Hello Arthur,

My office uses Maxwell Render / http://www.nextlimit.com/maxwell/ which touts itself as 'the world's best in realism'.

1) Is it easy to learn? essentially yes! It works differently to 'traditional' renderers as MR is based on real world settings so you basically add your lighting or choose an environment, materials, pick a camera and render. For novices, you'll get okay results with a minimum learning curve as the software pretty much does most of the hard work. Going to that next level of ultra photo realism takes effort to understand what it can do and how to work it. This is where the tutorials come in handy. It interfaces with DataCAD through 3DS or DXF export and imports DataCAD entities easily. Ideally, it works best with dual monitors as it allows you to expand the interface and place more of the menus on the second monitor, especially the materials library. A useful feature is the ability to create unlimited images after rendering is completed using its Multilight software (built-in) and as a free standalone software. It also allows you to stop a render, then resume at some future point, which can be the day after or later as you get time. Check your hardware is up to speed for best results. The licensing is similar to DataCAD in that once you've paid your subscription you can continue to use it indefinitely with the option to upgrade to the latest version, unlike say Autodesk products which expire annually and need repaying to use,

2) Is there good tutorials, written or training videos, to learn the software? in the early days (2010 and before) it was hard to locate good tutorials but now there are plenty: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCp3pJS ... -h57lLSGxA , https://blog.maxwellrender.com/ , http://www.maxwellrender.com/materials/ (free materials), https://forum.maxwellrender.com/ (forum), http://www.nextlimit.com/maxwell/learn-support/ ...just do a Google search and you'll get pages of independent sites,

3) What would you like it to do better? Improved speed. We're on v3 which is CPU-based with v4 now working on CPU and/or GPU for extra speed plus it includes a de-noiser for additional sampling. Our current specs are Lenovo WS Win10Pro, 8-core 2.6GHz Xeon CPU, 96GB RAM, NVIDIA Quadro - depending on the scene, external renders can be from 30-60 mins. to a sampling level without noticeable noise, to 8-12 hours for a quality interior with artificial lights down to an hour or so with natural lighting. You control the time and quality so you can render all day or just an hour depending on the quality you want to see....which is dependent on your hardware!

4) How much does it cost? The software is out of Spain so see their web site for US dollar pricing.
#74942 by Robert Scott
Sat Oct 06, 2018 12:43 pm
artmanvt2000 wrote:I would like to know what people are using for rendering software. We primarily use Sketchup to generate our 3D models. We have a version of Podium, which works well, but is time consuming to get light sources right.

With your response would you please do your best to answer the following questions:
1) Is it easy to learn?
2) Is there good tutorials, written or training videos, to learn the software?
3) What would you like it to do better?
4) How much does it cost?


I use Thea for Sketchup and Thea Studio. https://thearender.com

1. Easy to start. Like all rendering engines difficult to master.
2. Below average tutorials compared to VRAY but the website and forum does have videos.
3. Across the board, EVERYONE is looking for more speed....no rendering engine is immune. Thea utilizes GPU and CPU for rendering.
https://www.thearender.com/features/
4. Check the website.

Robert
#74954 by David Porter
Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:29 pm
I used to use Podium, in combination with SU, but changed a few years ago to Render[In].

1) Is it easy to learn?
I thought so. I found it easier to learn and use than Podium. It turns a normal SU model into one that is better looking (attaching one I did over the weekend for you to see)
2) Is there good tutorials, written or training videos, to learn the software?
I don't remember but I did look at a couple of YouTube ways of using it. I don't remember needing to look at tutorials. I just installed it as an Extension for SU and then clicked on its 4 menus, selected what I wanted, and created renderings.
3) What would you like it to do better?
Easier process to create artificial lights. It does it now and maybe I just haven't used it enough (most of my renderings have been exterior) to get the easy hang of it. I would also like a better way to turn the sun off for when I do renderings under a covered porch or interiors.
4) How much does it cost?
$166. Can see more about it at: https://renderin.com/
Rendering.jpg
#74955 by Robert Scott
Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:33 pm
Two products worth looking at for high-end results with ease of use:

https://enscape3d.com/
https://lumion.com/
#74960 by David Porter
Tue Oct 09, 2018 12:35 pm
Robert,

Thanks for pointing out those two programs. Enscape looks like the winner for my pocketbook and ease of use. It pushes Render[In] that I have been using for a few years to the side. The other program you listed looks quite pricey for my small rendering needs. I downloaded the 14-day free version of Enscape and will put it to the test and then probably purchase it.
#74961 by Robert Scott
Tue Oct 09, 2018 12:45 pm
David Porter wrote:Robert,

Thanks for pointing out those two programs. Enscape looks like the winner for my pocketbook and ease of use. It pushes Render[In] that I have been using for a few years to the side. The other program you listed looks quite pricey for my small rendering needs. I downloaded the 14-day free version of Enscape and will put it to the test and then probably purchase it.


You may also be interested in this that is being developed with Enscape in mind:
https://suplants.com/

I downloaded the early version of Enscape and did not do much with it...just too busy. Will possibly revisit in the slower days of winter.
#75202 by Ted B
Wed Nov 14, 2018 3:36 pm
I used to use Sketchup, then soften the images in PS Elements using several superimposed layers of various aspects of the same model; color, shadows, edges. There was a name for this fairly-popular method... I now have Sketchbook for Galaxy instead of PS Elements, but it should work roughly the same ...but I haven't tried it yet. I primarily just use Sketchup Pro and Layout for renderings using Styles.

I find that most computer-generated images are too "hard", and need a bit of manual "softening" and erasing to get a better image-result; my preference is an image between a marker-rendering and a watercolor.
#75222 by Robert Scott
Sun Nov 18, 2018 6:16 pm
Ted B wrote:I used to use Sketchup, then soften the images in PS Elements using several superimposed layers of various aspects of the same model; color, shadows, edges. There was a name for this fairly-popular method... I now have Sketchbook for Galaxy instead of PS Elements, but it should work roughly the same ...but I haven't tried it yet. I primarily just use Sketchup Pro and Layout for renderings using Styles.

I find that most computer-generated images are too "hard", and need a bit of manual "softening" and erasing to get a better image-result; my preference is an image between a marker-rendering and a watercolor.


The Dennis Techinique: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zWe1aVBEkD4
#75238 by David Porter
Fri Nov 23, 2018 7:31 am
I can report back on the Enscape software. It works directly with SketchUp and with Revit. Not cheap at between $450 and $650 per year for a subscription but a quick learning curve and, at least I think, incredible output results, including video. In the link I post below, if anyone wants to see it, is a 12 second walking video of a screen enclosure project I am working on. It took me about an hour to get the hang of Enscape and to learn enough to create this video. I built the 3D model in DataCAD. I exported it as a DXF file and then imported it into SketchUp. I did all of the colors, materials, entourage, and saving out various view points in SU. Enscape is an add-on extension for SU. Open it up, set up viewpoints and time frames for the video progression, and save out the video. The link below shows the end result: https://www.dropbox.com/s/2tvs7uxb87lx3 ... t.mp4?dl=0
#75239 by Robert Scott
Fri Nov 23, 2018 1:22 pm
Hi David,

I also started out with Enscape less than a week ago. I'm impressed to the point that Enscape will replace Kubity in my tool belt and become my rendering engine of choice for progress and design development renderings. There are some limitations for advanced rendering but rendering out a 4K images is blazing fast and serves the purpose.

The WEB standalone feature is nice but lacks some needed features.
The EXE file export is awesome, especially if your client is a gamer or has a solid video card.

Real-time rendering is the name of the game now.

Quick design development image...took less than 10 seconds to render at 4K:
Attachments
Enscape.JPG

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