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RaVeN{base}
08-25-2009, 06:01 PM
I have a Mac Pro 8 core 3.0 with 8gb ram, ATi X1900 512mb Video Card running 10.5.8 currently.
What can I do to speed up renders.
More ram, Better Video card?

Thanks

rsfd
08-26-2009, 03:26 AM
Hi,

More RAM does not help, as LW 9.6 still is a 32-bit application and cannot use the 8GB anyway (exept you are a "hardcore" member using 64-bit cocoa LW beta).
The graphic card also does not help that much for shorter render times.

So it's more about scene optimization: e.g. finding appropriate render and material settings (or: more CPUs).

RaVeN{base}
08-26-2009, 05:26 AM
Hi,

More RAM does not help, as LW 9.6 still is a 32-bit application and cannot use the 8GB anyway (exept you are a "hardcore" member using 64-bit cocoa LW beta).
The graphic card also does not help that much for shorter render times.

So it's more about scene optimization: e.g. finding appropriate render and material settings (or: more CPUs).

So as a"Hardcore" member, I have not seen anything for Core or this cocoa beta for 9.6.
Where would I sign up for that?

3dworks
08-26-2009, 05:27 AM
...
More RAM does not help, as LW 9.6 still is a 32-bit application and cannot use the 8GB anyway (exept you are a "hardcore" member using 64-bit cocoa LW beta).
The graphic card also does not help that much for shorter render times.
...

agreed completely... scene optimization can do wonders. a few hints, and by no means a complete list:

* if you are rendering with GI, try to read this tutorial http://www.except.nl/lightwave/RadiosityGuide96/ - it contains precious informations for optimizing render times. if after reading this you are rendering in hours instead of days, consider to send the author a small donation ;)

* also, check your modeler geometry: can the details be reduced without impact on image quality? in this case use a polygon reduction tool like qemloss.

* are you using slow rendering surfaces? - try to optimize them. if you don't need 'physical correctness', some slow rendering material nodes (for example dielectric nodes) can be replaced with 'old school' layered materials which will render faster. check also for soft reflections - there are some posts in this forums explaining how to optimize those settings.

* if you are using transparency for clipping masks, try to set clip maps in object properties instead: they will render a lot faster. side effect is that you can lower the recursion limit in raytrace settings. see next point:

* check the ray recursion limit in render settings. if you don't have complex glass structures in your scene this can be set to a much lower than default level, sometimes, even a setting as low as 4 can be OK.

* still in render settings, check if you need raytraced refractions or transparency. uncheck them, if this is not necessary, and rendering will be faster.

* check for slow rendering lights. do you have many area lights in your scene? as they render slow, if you can, replace them with faster rendering spotlights. sometimes light arrays can be a solution as well. also, remember that 'old school' buffered shadows in many cases render way faster than raytraced ones.

* last but not least: certain scenes are rendered much faster with third party engines like fprime or kray. check your budget and time - it could be a good investment...

hope that those tips are not too obvious :D

cheers

markus

RaVeN{base}
08-26-2009, 05:28 AM
also if I were to set up a render farm, I have to Mac Pro 8 core machine and a couple mac book pro duo core's I have set them up before for a screamer net render, but it was a temp situation over a holiday. If I had dedicated machines for this what would be the best option, cheap PC's if so what kind. Thanks.

RaVeN{base}
08-26-2009, 05:47 AM
agreed completely... scene optimization can do wonders. a few hints, and by no means a complete list:


markus

Awesome, thanks for the tips, I will try them out and see what I can do.

rsfd
08-26-2009, 09:14 AM
So as a"Hardcore" member, I have not seen anything for Core or this cocoa beta for 9.6.
Where would I sign up for that?
Well, I'm not in the "Hardcore" Group, but the closed beta for cocoa LW 64-bit has started several weeks ago: http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=99743.
If you joined "Hardcore", you should have access to the "LW-Core" threads and to closed beta. Have a look into your NewTek accounts download page. Otherwise you should contact NewTek Support or ask in the forums, so that other "HC-Members" can help you.


Awesome, thanks for the tips, I will try them out and see what I can do.
Markus' tips are always worth reading :)

For a render farm, I think PC's would give you "more bang for the bucks" (eventhough, as a Mac-addict, my heart is bleeding by such a statement). I cannot make any statements about mixed LW environments, but decent CPUs with appropriate RAM and standard graphic card on 64-bit windows should do.

RaVeN{base}
08-26-2009, 10:58 AM
quick question on the Render window.
the segment memory, how will this affect render speed. say 32 vs 128 etc
also the multi threading, I usually have it at 16 is this better ,higher number faster speed?

I see the HC Beta I can choose 32 threads in the same scene.
Is there a way to allocate more ram for it either in 9.6 or 64 bit beta?

3dworks
08-26-2009, 11:17 AM
quick question on the Render window.
the segment memory, how will this affect render speed. say 32 vs 128 etc
also the multi threading, I usually have it at 16 is this better ,higher number faster speed?

I see the HC Beta I can choose 32 threads in the same scene.
Is there a way to allocate more ram for it either in 9.6 or 64 bit beta?

segment memory: the less segments, the faster (best is to have just 1 segment)

multi threading: leave it to 'automatic' - this usually is the best setting. setting more threads than logical cores in your machine does not speed up rendering, afaik. in a nehalem mac this will set it typically to 16 threads.

cheers

markus

3dWannabe
08-26-2009, 11:19 AM
Just a thought? For a Mac with a lot of RAM, I wonder if a RAM drive would speed up renders?

Would depend on how much drive access is happening - or whether it is 90% computational speed, 10% drive access. Could probably use Mac's activity monitor to check this out on a long render.

I remember how blindingly fast compiles would go in a RAM drive years ago, but I haven't used one in a long time.

3dworks
08-26-2009, 11:38 AM
forgot another important point...

* camera settings. check your AA settings - a good tutorial is here, again http://www.except.nl/lightwave/aa/index.htm

basically, it depends on the scene if you go for an adaptive sampling setting (especially good when larger render areas are simple background) or for a full screen AA without adaptive sampling.

* check out if you really need motion blur or DOF, both rather time consuming when rendering. with certain plugins you can do a fast motion blur in post production - getting a nice post DOF is more difficult.

* last but not least, it can be worth to check if the good old classic camera is maybe rendering the whole scene much faster than the RT based perspective cam.

* last tip: extensively use the region render to check critical parts for speed in your image. use this nice http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=101249 plugin to record all your render settings on image - very useful!

cheers

markus