Making Your 3ds max Projects Beautiful
- RAY TRACING: SPEEDING UP THINGS (OBJECTS)
- RAY TRACING: SPEEDING UP THINGS (GLOBALS)
- RAYTRACING: INDEX OF REFRACTION (IOR)
- RENDERING: FILTERS FOR STILL IMAGES VERSUS VIDEO
- RENDERING VIDEO: RENDER FRAMES, NOT FIELDS
- RENDERING VIDEO: MAKE SURE VIDEO COLOR CHECK IS ON
- RENDERING VIDEO: CHECK YOUR GAMMA!
- RENDERING GREAT BIG, GIANT, HONKING, ENORMOUS IMAGES SUCCESSFULLY
- DON'T RENDER MOVIES—RENDER FRAMES!
- SPEAKING OF THE RAM PLAYER...
- RERENDERING FROM THE ENVIRONMENT BACKGROUND
- OKAY, SO YOU REALLY WANT TO RERENDER YOUR ANIMATION...
- IFL = IMAGE FILE LIST
- YOU CAN'T CREATE .IFL FILES ON READ-ONLY MEDIA!
- MANIPULATING IMAGE SEQUENCES USING .IFLS
- CREATE NESTED .IFL FILES
- A CHICKEN AND EGG PROBLEM: HOW DO YOU SET UP AN ANIMATED BACKGROUND FOR A SCENE IF YOU HAVEN'T RENDERED THE BACKGROUND YET?
- COULD YOU MAKE THINGS MORE COMPLICATED, PLEASE? (WHAT ABOUT USING A COMPOSITING PROGRAM?)
- COMPOSITING USING VIDEO POST
- RENDERING WITH SCANLINE MOTION BLUR: MULTI-PASS AND IMAGE
- RENDERING WITH SCANLINE: MIX IMAGE AND MULTI-PASS MOTION BLUR
- RENDERING IMAGES FOR PRINT: TEACH THOSE PRINT FOLKS A LESSON (OR TWO...)
- RENDERING IMAGES FOR PRINT: OH YEAH, ANOTHER THING...
- "THOSE PRINT PEOPLE"—MAKE IT EASIER ON THEM WITH 3DS MAX 6
- THE PRINT SIZE WIZARD (ENOUGH WITH THE PRINTING STUFF ALREADY!)
- MENTAL RAY IS IN THE BUILDING!
- MENTAL RAY IS ON THE COUCH!
- USE MENTAL RAY'S IMAGE SAMPLING WISELY
- IN MENTAL RAY, CONTRAST CAN SAVE YOUR DAY!
- HIDDEN LINE RENDERING: RENDER TO VECTORS IN MENTAL RAY
- TRIM YOUR (BSP) TREE IN MENTAL RAY
- MENTAL RAY PREFERENCES: PLEASE LEAVE ME A MESSAGE
- RENDERING AESTHETICS: OUTER SPACE SCENES
- RENDERING AESTHETICS: UNDERWATER SCENES
- RENDERING AESTHETICS: DISTANT LANDSCAPES
- RENDERING AESTHETICS: STILL LIFE AND MACROPHOTOGRAPHY
- "HELLO... YOU'VE GOT RENDER!"
3ds max has always had one of the fastest renderers in the 3d industry. Its native scanline renderer has been the backbone of everything from cinematic special effects to architectural rendering to high-resolution print work. In short, it's a fast workhorse that gets most every rendering job done quickly. (People who want better control and more rendering options can also employ some excellent third-party renderers, such as the Brazil Rendering System [http://www.splutterfish.com/], Cebas's finalRender [http://www.finalrender.com] [http://www.cebas.com/], and The Chaos Group's V-Ray [http://www.chaosgroup.com].)
However, for those desiring more high-end render control within the core 3ds max package, fear not: With the release of 3ds max 6, the acclaimed mental images' mental ray 3.2 renderer is included. The mental ray 3.2 renderer brings fast raytracing, true sub-pixel displacement, advanced shaders and a complex shader language to adventurous 3ds max users.
In this chapter, I'll present several dozen tips on how to get the most out of your native 3ds max scanline renderer. In addition, contributor Aksel Karcher (a freelance designer and lighting technical director, at [http://www.akselkarcher.com/] weighs in with several mental ray tips for those 3ds max users who want to stay on the cutting edge.
RAY TRACING: SPEEDING UP THINGS (OBJECTS)
If you love the look of ray tracing in your scene (for glass and metallic surfaces) but you're not a fan of raytraced material rendering times when using the 3ds max scanline renderer, don't worry: You can speed up your renderings by doing a few simple things.
First, make sure antialiasing is unchecked in the Rendering > Raytracer Settings > Raytracer/ Global Ray Antialiaser menu when you're doing test renderings, then turn antialiasing back on when you're doing your final production rendering. (Note: You must be using the 3ds max default scanline renderer as your production renderer. If you have mental ray chosen instead, the Raytracer Settings and Raytrace Global Include/Exclude menu items are grayed out.) Second, check your scene object integrity: make sure you've welded the cores of Lathed objects, that objects have unified face normals, and that the objects aren't degenerate. (That is, they should not have missing or coincident faces, overlapping vertices, and so on.) Third, if you don't need to keep the modifier stacks active for some or all of your scene objects, then collapse them to the modifier stack results (preferably Editable Meshes). Fourth, keep your Raytrace material as one-sided instead of two-sided, unless it's absolutely necessary to represent surfaces such as thick glass.