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Red_Oddity
04-11-2012, 08:08 AM
Interesting new article on FXguide on rendering engines.
http://www.fxguide.com/featured/the-art-of-rendering/

And guess who's missing at the party again :o

3DGFXStudios
04-11-2012, 08:36 AM
Always the same story with NT :z

robertoortiz
04-11-2012, 11:06 AM
Wh Still, not mentioning LWs renderer (only as a sidenote in the modo section)... kinda weak. :stumped: :)

They might as well have said:
"The product is no longer being devloped"
I am also stumped.
-R

bazsa73
04-11-2012, 11:50 AM
NT should have hired Rob Powers earlier.

Dexter2999
04-11-2012, 12:42 PM
While I really (really) like fxguide stuff, they tend to stick to the "industry standards" meaning they are AutoDesk-centric for the most part. They give nods to other software that is deemed tops in its field like C4D for motion graphics or SynthEyes and PFMatchit.

They mentioned the Newtek booth in their NAB coverage last year and I teased Mike Seymore that is seemed like the word "Lightwave" burned his tongue to say. He replied, "I don't have anything against it. I've just never worked with it." Which is sad, because he has done a considerable amount of work with his company. But "Maya" is the first thing that comes to his mind when he thinks 3D, I'd be willing to guess.

papou
04-11-2012, 06:01 PM
i can't believe it...
maybe lightwave is not a main actor today but it can't be ignored in an article like that!...

Cageman
04-11-2012, 06:13 PM
Actually, I havn't seen any renderengine doing GI-caching for static objects the way LW does it.

Imagine an environment where most of the stuff is going to stay static... Creating an FG or MC cache for every 30 frames (in a situation where the camera movement isn't overly fast, looking at all directions), you can 100% trust that LW will produce absolutely flickerfree GI.

As I said, I havn't seen any renderengine doing that sort of stuff as easily and fast as LW does it.

I guess that the issue is more in line with the author being negatively biased towards LW and, as such, never bothered looking things up... so... quite clueless to some of it's rendering capabilities, obviously.

Netvudu
04-11-2012, 06:15 PM
mentioning stuff like Cinemas 4D renderer, Quicksilver and Modo´s renderer, but not Lightwave´s native renderer clearly shows a hugely biased opinion on the article´s writer.
I can understand mentioning some "specialized" engines such as Maxwell, and such, but some of those I mentioned above are miles weaker and less versatile than LW´s render engine, not to mention they have way less mileage and production-proven record.
When I saw Quicksilver mentioned I wasn´t even bothered anymore. That´s, simply put, a marketing plug. and renders invalid most of the article.
Quicksilver ain´t a render engine. More like a funny and sort of useless prototype of an engine.

Cageman
04-11-2012, 06:33 PM
mentioning stuff like Cinemas 4D renderer, Quicksilver and Modo´s renderer, but not Lightwave´s native renderer clearly shows a hugely biased opinion on the article´s writer.
I can understand mentioning some "specialized" engines such as Maxwell, and such, but some of those I mentioned above are miles weaker and less versatile than LW´s render engine, not to mention they have way less mileage and production-proven record.
When I saw Quicksilver mentioned I wasn´t even bothered anymore. That´s, simply put, a marketing plug. and renders invalid most of the article.
Quicksilver ain´t a render engine. More like a funny and sort of useless prototype of an engine.

Agreed!

Hunger Games has a bunch of LW-renders in it, and, of course, Iron Sky... not to mention Battlestar Galactica: Blood and Chrome...

As I said in my previous post; the author of the article clearly has some form of negative bias towards LW. Just the fact that artists using it, again, won Emmys for best vfx for television... well... I rest my case... Is it 12 years in a row now, that an FX-heavy show relying on LW has won it?

Oh well...

geo_n
04-11-2012, 09:30 PM
Nice article especially the first part. The bad part, no lw renderer, superceded by modo renderer.
Vray for lw? :D
"Scott Metzger, CG Supervisor, uses V-Ray and feels strongly that for medium level companies to survive they need to be exploring V-Ray for their facility due to the combined image quality and speed of production, specifically the speed one can zero in on a production final high quality look. Metzger even told one medium size company he worked with recently that he believes moving forward, ‘you will either be using V-Ray, or you’ll be out of business."

DigitalSorcery8
04-11-2012, 10:23 PM
Vray for lw? :D
Ouch! ;D

geo_n
04-11-2012, 10:45 PM
Ouch! ;D

To be fair though, lw 11 renderer is really good with the unified sampling. :thumbsup:
Just that if many many studios out there are using vray for 3dmax, maya, c4d, etc and standardizing their pipeline based on vray, then its just good idea to bring it to lw with newtek incurring the expenses. Not going to happen vice versa, too little users for chaos to develop for lw.
And those other appz have strong renderers but vray co-exists with them, like kray does with lw renderer. :D

DigitalSorcery8
04-11-2012, 10:57 PM
To be fair though, lw 11 renderer is really good with the unified sampling. :thumbsup:
Just that if many many studios out there are using vray for 3dmax, maya, c4d, etc and standardizing their pipeline based on vray, then its just good idea to bring it to lw with newtek incurring the expenses. Not going to happen vice versa, too little users for chaos to develop for lw.
And those other appz have strong renderers but vray co-exists with them, like kray does with lw renderer. :D

I completely agree! :thumbsup:

Considering what I have seen (from the Modo forum) regarding Vray's capabilities, I would love to be able to buy it NOW. But even if it does end up being ported to LW it will take a relatively long time to happen.

Maybe an Arnold to LW port? :D

realgray
04-11-2012, 11:12 PM
Maybe someone should write a description of the LW engine in the comments for people who may be interested.

Cageman
04-12-2012, 02:06 AM
Nice article especially the first part. The bad part, no lw renderer, superceded by modo renderer.
Vray for lw? :D
"Scott Metzger, CG Supervisor, uses V-Ray and feels strongly that for medium level companies to survive they need to be exploring V-Ray for their facility due to the combined image quality and speed of production, specifically the speed one can zero in on a production final high quality look. Metzger even told one medium size company he worked with recently that he believes moving forward, ‘you will either be using V-Ray, or you’ll be out of business."

VRay is a good engine, but not magical. I have yet to see a reason to invest in it for what we do here.

There are other engines, such as Arnold, that is waaay more interresting for non-architectural work.

:)

Red_Oddity
04-12-2012, 02:54 AM
VRay is a good engine, but not magical. I have yet to see a reason to invest in it for what we do here.

There are other engines, such as Arnold, that is waaay more interresting for non-architectural work.

:)

We switched to Vray to get away from MR (which for years saw little to no progress in features, had little to no support, and was unclear what Nvidia would do with it after Mental Images got rid of it.)

LW rendering hasn't been done for quite some time in our studio, though i do like the improvements that have been made in the version 11 cycle (Unified rendering, instancing), and with the little actual production experience i have with version 11 i can still safely say it could still be made a lot better to be fitted easier in pipelines (some of which can only be properly solved by some serious under the hood changes.)

Still, for an article discussing render engines i'm actually quite surprised that LW 11 isn't mentioned (even for a veteran like Mike Seymour this seems like a big oversight), especially since 11 is mostly a render engine and pipeline improvement update.


As for Arnold, we had to choose between VRay or Arnold, now, i can't speak on experience with Solid Angle since it is almost impossible to get some straight answers for them concerning pricing, subscriptions and software support, Chaos Group on the other hand is very easy to get in touch with, even through their forums, and they listen rather well to their user base, not to mention pricing is very reasonable (1 VRay license entitles you to 10 render nodes (used as standalone renderer or as specially catered rendering plugin for your software of choice.)

robertoortiz
04-12-2012, 05:02 AM
Maybe someone should write a description of the LW engine in the comments for people who may be interested.
This is a very good idea.
I would suggest to compliment the article and mention the fact that LW is alive and still doing well.

geo_n
04-12-2012, 06:22 AM
VRay is a good engine, but not magical. I have yet to see a reason to invest in it for what we do here.

There are other engines, such as Arnold, that is waaay more interresting for non-architectural work.

:)

You should really try vray first because you can't compare objectively only using lw renderer and mentalray for maya which I know you said you haven't used vray. Where do you base your knowledge of vray?
Arnold looks awesome but it looks like it has yet to do general purpose renders like vray and lw. Vray is available to anybody who want's it and you don't need support from TD or light and render guru like the article said even on big productions. We've been using vray for all kinds of renders even cel shaded over two years ago. Not as good as Paths of Hate though but just proves how versatile it is. The look or style of a render in vray is much like lightwave where it all boils down to lighting and materials. Big advantage is vray is super fast, clean and super predictable.
The people who dislike vray gives me the impression they don't like it because people are doing great things with it with less effort that it makes cg work less prestigious, boring, etc. Doesn't matter to me as long as I spend less time doing test renders and staying at work all night.

geo_n
04-12-2012, 06:30 AM
I completely agree! :thumbsup:

Considering what I have seen (from the Modo forum) regarding Vray's capabilities, I would love to be able to buy it NOW. But even if it does end up being ported to LW it will take a relatively long time to happen.

Maybe an Arnold to LW port? :D

An Arnold port would be great. The more the merrier. Then maybe newtek can finally focus on better modelling/uv tools and unifying the lay/mod architecture instead of focusing again on the lw renderer, which the fxguide ignored anyway. 3dmax scanline gets a nod and lw 11 renderer doesn't. Ouch indeed.

erikals
04-12-2012, 08:30 AM
popped the question, let's see...

Red_Oddity
04-12-2012, 08:41 AM
Arnold looks awesome but it looks like it has yet to do general purpose renders like vray and lw.
Not going to happen any time soon, Arnold is optimized especially for film work. It isn't designed to be a general purpose renderer, good thing is we have enough choice when it comes to rendering engines.

rcallicotte
04-12-2012, 09:20 AM
I agree and it's disgusting.



As I said in my previous post; the author of the article clearly has some form of negative bias towards LW.

mikeseymour
04-12-2012, 09:27 AM
This is a very good idea.
I would suggest to compliment the article and mention the fact that LW is alive and still doing well.

Well sorry LW about excluding you.

So perhaps I can suggest that I speak to someone and just amend the source article?

I am in LA now and at NAB from the weekend. Would you recommend I just turn up on the NewTek booth? Who would be the best person to talk to re GI rendering with LW?

Mike Seymour
fxguide

ps
I really dont hate LW. :-)

erikals
04-12-2012, 09:34 AM
Rob Powers :]

rcallicotte
04-12-2012, 09:37 AM
Oh, sorry Mike. Hope to see the change. The rest of the article was amazing, but I was so soured by not seeing software that has been so clearly prolific for so many years and has headlined the industry for so many decades that I couldn't stomach reading the whole thing.

I'm glad that will change now. :bowdown:

robertoortiz
04-12-2012, 09:39 AM
Mike you are a class act.
Thanks for coming to our neck of the woods.
:)

And yes, Rob Powers is the person to talk to.

-R

erikals
04-12-2012, 09:43 AM
Mike, i sent a mail to him (and Matt at NewTek), should contact you shortly...

mikeseymour
04-12-2012, 09:51 AM
Mike, i sent a mail to him (and Matt at NewTek), should contact you shortly...

Great well if Rob Powers is at NAB and he can make some time to talk to me that would be great.

If any of you - the real users, have GI images that we could possibly use in the story. Please email me [email protected] (assuming you own copyright). As you can see in the article we tried to include both company info and artist work.

Thanks for the responses. I look forward to be illuminated as to LW's capabilities.

Mike

Matt
04-12-2012, 01:58 PM
I believe Rob is going to be in touch Mike. Rob, Lino Grandi, David Forstenlechner (one of the LightWave developers) and myself are all at NAB.

And to the LW artists reading this thread, I urge you to respond to Mike's request for images, I know you guys will have a ton of awesome GI centric stuff to show off!

:)

erikals
04-12-2012, 01:58 PM
Imagine an environment where most of the stuff is going to stay static... Creating an FG or MC cache for every 30 frames (in a situation where the camera movement isn't overly fast, looking at all directions), you can 100% trust that LW will produce absolutely flickerfree GI.

the most neglected render trick ever.
if you know your way around post work this trick is worth gold.

Cageman
04-12-2012, 02:33 PM
You should really try vray first because you can't compare objectively only using lw renderer and mentalray for maya which I know you said you haven't used vray. Where do you base your knowledge of vray?

I have friends who have used vray on many occasions, and, as any other renderengine, it has issues in certain situations. As I said; it isn't magic. If that were true, there wouldn't be any bad looking VRay renders out there, but there are... :)

We have the pricepoint to concider and also choose which host software to use it for... and, of course, we would need to devote quite some time into it, which, at this point just isn't going to happen; we are swamped with work, and we need to move through it fast. Sticking to what works, and also knowing that you aren't pushing the limits for those renders we work with (LW and Modo), I really don't see the reason for us to go for VRay. I really don't.

Arnold, on the other hand, is quite an interresting engine because it is a very fast brute force MC-renderer. No photonmaps, no irradiance caching, no interpolation etc. It seems to be FPrime, but on Steroids.. very much a fire and forget kind of engine, unlike VRay that still needs optimizations and techniques that requiers deeper knowledge about the engine itself and how it works.

This is why I think that LW and Modo fits the jobs we are doing like a hand in glove, and we are still not utilizing the full power of either engine. Both of them are unlimited regarding rendernodes and both of them works very well with our renderfarm management software of choice; Muster, and all to an extremely low cost. We also know these engines very well, and we can, in most cases, quickly move past a bug.

In terms of LW, we have extremely good support from third party developers such as Lernie Ang, DB&W, Dan Dulberger, Eurisko Studios and of course, DPont.

So, changing a renderengine isn't just the engine itself, there are MANY factors around it that needs to fit as well.

:)

speismonqui
04-12-2012, 02:57 PM
that's probably why I often get the "lightwave? Isn't that a step back?, you know about max do you"?

We all (here) know the capabilities of LW and it's powerfull renderer and maybe we don't care too much about BIASED articles like this one, but it hurts NT badly for the people outside this community which is A LOT.

People are forgeting LW and articles like this are not helping.

Lightwave? mmmm... it's not even mentioned in that Fx Guide "the art of rendering" article... you should check out Modo... :mad:

erikals
04-12-2012, 03:04 PM
just wondering about Arnold,
is it only available for Softimage and Messiah?
i remember some time back it was a bit hard to find info on it...

Red_Oddity
04-12-2012, 03:34 PM
Last i heard they are working on a Maya translator, but most companies that rely on it (Digic for example) have written their own translators.
And i believe (correct me if i'm wrong) that it uses RIB or a RIB like format to store the scene data.

robpowers3d
04-12-2012, 03:39 PM
Hi Mike,
certainly let's find a time where we can sit down for a chat. Thanks for your comments here in our forum and I look forward to meeting you at NAB and sharing all of the great projects that are being done using LightWave as the primary tool or as a key tool in a mixed pipeline including 'The Hunger Games', 'The Walking Dead', 'GRIM', 'CSI', 'Iron Sky', and many others.

LightWave users are the most creative, flexible, and well rounded in the industry and we are extremely proud of the work that they are doing with our software around the world.






Great well if Rob Powers is at NAB and he can make some time to talk to me that would be great.

If any of you - the real users, have GI images that we could possibly use in the story. Please email me [email protected] (assuming you own copyright). As you can see in the article we tried to include both company info and artist work.

Thanks for the responses. I look forward to be illuminated as to LW's capabilities.

Mike

Intuition
04-12-2012, 03:52 PM
[redacted by request of author]

Celshader
04-12-2012, 04:07 PM
Though fumeFX was just announced for Maya so those fluid fx passes may soon be vray passes as well.

Is that possible? I work at a shop that has access to MAX VRay in addition to FumeFX, and the impression I got from my MAX co-workers was that FumeFX was a separate render engine from VRay. That is, you could not render FumeFX smoke in the same render pass as a VRay-surfaced car. You have to render them separately and composite them together later.

Dexter2999
04-12-2012, 04:28 PM
Just to stay positive about Lightwave I will say this.... Lightwave will cost you much much much much less then vray with a huge farm. This often makes Lightwave a very nice alternative to smaller freelance based projects the world around. Lightwave can get there too.

Would you say this translates to television productions as well?

As an aside, not that I have a need for it, but I would like to see Vray for LW as well.

Dexter2999
04-12-2012, 04:30 PM
Mike you are a class act.

Yeah, he is...and scary smart to boot.

Intuition
04-12-2012, 05:07 PM
Is that possible? I work at a shop that has access to MAX VRay in addition to FumeFX, and the impression I got from my MAX co-workers was that FumeFX was a separate render engine from VRay. That is, you could not render FumeFX smoke in the same render pass as a VRay-surfaced car. You have to render them separately and composite them together later.

Doh, you are correct Jen. Where I crossed my wires was that you can make fumeFX contribute GI to a Vray or mental ray pass. The actual smoke render is fumeFX itself. But it would be a vray pass getting the GI instead of the usual mental ray render.

Though.... this is an interesting note.

During our development of Vray for maya with Chaosgroup they added the ability to render maya fluids natively.

I did some beautiful vray renders of maya simulated smoke. If fumeFX can hand that smoke sim to maya somehow I wonder if Vray for maya can be made to render it?

To be continued......

Chuck
04-12-2012, 05:19 PM
Just to stay positive about Lightwave I will say this.... Lightwave will cost you much much much much less then vray with a huge farm. This often makes Lightwave a very nice alternative to smaller freelance based projects the world around. Lightwave can get there too.

LightWave has a lot more worth and potential than this comment would indicate, if I am understanding it correctly. I can agree that it's a great value for freelance-based projects, but it seems to me, given the context of the rest of your post, I am hearing you relegate it to that and nothing else; whereas to my observation LightWave is very clearly well fit for professional production work in a variety of pipelines and projects, including television and film. All three of the places you list in the mini-resume in your sig have used LightWave rendering to profitable and in many cases award-winning effect. It may have been a while since for DD, but not so for others.

Renders from LightWave and several other renderers were shown to producers in a blind test for Terra Nova, and the LightWave renderings won the nod. A number of other recent production examples have already been cited, so that's enough for the point.

If I took your meaning incorrectly, my apologies; but it really didn't seem like you were coming down with anything beyond that as positive for LightWave, and I see more than enough evidence to suggest there is more of a role in CG production for LightWave than the comment seems to indicate, both from a quality standpoint as well as the economies the package can offer.

Lightwolf
04-12-2012, 05:38 PM
We are a no-BS style business. We don't care about marketing, price, gimmicks, being fancy or software loyalty. We care about results quality AND quantity.

Totally off topic so excuse me for jumping in... but I thought this part is quite funny considering the fuss about recent comments by your CEO.

Cheers,
Mike

jasonwestmas
04-12-2012, 06:45 PM
Newtek is way too quiet for having just released LW11. What's the deal, it seems obvious to me why LW is getting overlooked.

Intuition
04-12-2012, 06:48 PM
LightWave has a lot more worth and potential than this comment would indicate, ........EDIT

I see more than enough evidence to suggest there is more of a role in CG production for LightWave than the comment seems to indicate, both from a quality standpoint as well as the economies the package can offer.

Yeah Chuck, nothing against LW's renderer. It was my bread and butter for years. I also know the folks at Pixmondo and their work on Terra Nova is great.

There is much more worth then what I was getting at with the free render nodes for certain. Still. I don't want to get into specifics because this is a LW site. There are numerous reasons I could get into when comparing LW's engine to mental ray, renderman or Vray where it has certain pros and cons. Many were covered in the Core private forum and some of those things were addressed which is great news, especially for my friends at Pixomondo.

Didn't meant o come off negative at all. Just got long winded in my explanation and then edited in a positive note about LW to let people know I am not here to rip on LW at all. Just give perspective since I have used every piece of software and most render engines in production for years. It may seem bad here but what you don't see is when I am defending Lightwave as a useful weapon when people are asking me about it who have never used it.

Intuition
04-12-2012, 06:50 PM
Totally off topic so excuse me for jumping in... but I thought this part is quite funny considering the fuss about recent comments by your CEO.

Cheers,
Mike

Haha, no doubt Mike.

We have entire management staff who have nothing to do with the creative problem solving. Thankfully. Yes, if you were to judge by his comments then I could wholeheartedly agree. ;D

Celshader
04-12-2012, 06:51 PM
...what you don't see is when I am defending Lightwave as a useful weapon when people are asking me about it who have never used it.

I just point out to those folks that you can't model in VRay. ;) ;) ;)

DigitalSorcery8
04-12-2012, 07:04 PM
Newtek is way too quiet for having just released LW11. What's the deal, it seems obvious to me why LW is getting overlooked.

You're surprised at the lack of Newtek marketing?

Hey... it's Newtek. What would you expect? :question:

One month they're getting better, the next... nothing. And then nothing.... and then nothing... and then a sputter... and then nothing.... and then BAM..... and then nothing.... etc., etc.

jasonwestmas
04-12-2012, 07:18 PM
You're surprised at the lack of Newtek marketing?

Hey... it's Newtek. What would you expect? :question:

One month they're getting better, the next... nothing. And then nothing.... and then nothing... and then a sputter... and then nothing.... and then BAM..... and then nothing.... etc., etc.

No, I've been saying this for several years now, probably since LW 9.0. When I started getting serious about Lightwave rendering. Other than a much better siggraph in 2010, I'm afraid the ghost-like mystique of LW will continue for another decade or so. It must be arrogance or something that makes one so quiet in such a competitive market.

Nevertheless, I'm greatful for what LW and the community has taught me about rendering in general, I can carry that knowledge with me where ever I go.

rwhunt99
04-12-2012, 07:18 PM
This might be a dumb question; but has anyone invited a few of these pundits to a one on one demonstration of LW rendering? Exactly what has the Newtek marketing department done, do they even have one?

DigitalSorcery8
04-12-2012, 07:27 PM
No, I've been saying this for several years now, probably since LW 9.0. When I started getting serious about Lightwave rendering.
It's been like this for a LONG time - well before v9. They are consistently inconsistent and rarely fail to miss an opportunity.

Other than a much better siggraph in 2010, I'm afraid the ghost-like mystique of LW will continue for another decade or so.
That was the BAM.... and then nothing.... and then nothing... etc.

It must be arrogance or something that makes one so quiet in such a competitive market.
I don't think it's arrogance. IMO it's either a complete lack of funds (putting most of it into TriCaster ads) or a marketing department that is incompetent. I don't know what else it could be. But arrogance... I doubt it. How can they be?

jasonwestmas
04-12-2012, 07:36 PM
I don't think it's arrogance. IMO it's either a complete lack of funds (putting most of it into TriCaster ads) or a marketing department that is incompetent. I don't know what else it could be. But arrogance... I doubt it. How can they be?

Yes, there is a thick opinion out there that LW marketing and funding in general has always suffered at the hands of the Tricaster flagship mentality, whatever that means exactly but it kinda makes sense.

Netvudu
04-12-2012, 07:53 PM
I don´t think you are being fair people. Newtek´s marketing for Ligthwave has grown miles from what it was a few years ago. Since Rob Powers took the wheel we can certainly see a steady and constant grow of both Lightwave´s features and perception. Let´s give this guys some more time and I´m sure we´ll soon be rewarded with a great market position and an even greater tool set to match.
It´s also unfair trying to compare a huge marketing machine such as Autodesk to Newtek´s resources. Let´s be realistic.
Right now, Newtek´s at NAB spreading the word...exactly the place where we want them to be.

Dexter2999
04-12-2012, 07:57 PM
It must be arrogance or something that makes one so quiet in such a competitive market.

I'm not saying that this is the answer just putting it out there as a possibility.
Newtek may have market research numbers that indicate that increased spending in advertising may not be producing the desired sales they had hoped to see as result of the investment (ROI).

They increased their presence in some professional publications. It's not cheap. But those ads can't break the mindset of the public who think "everyone who is serious about 3D has to use Maya". "All the schools teach Maya. All the jobs are for Maya." It's a tough nut to crack and just putting money in advertising and convention booths isn't going to solve the situation. I'm not saying that they shouldn't advertise. Out of sight, out of mind. I think they need to maintain a presence. But the deeper issue is how much to spend to keep in the public mind.

I'm with many here in wishing that marketing had a magic wand to wave and make everything all better. But, Newtek is a small company with finite resources. They can only do so much. I would like to say that I think the marketing of the last couple of years has been much better than years past.

jasonwestmas
04-12-2012, 08:31 PM
I don´t think you are being fair people. Newtek´s marketing for Ligthwave has grown miles from what it was a few years ago. Since Rob Powers took the wheel we can certainly see a steady and constant grow of both Lightwave´s features and perception. Let´s give this guys some more time and I´m sure we´ll soon be rewarded with a great market position and an even greater tool set to match.
It´s also unfair trying to compare a huge marketing machine such as Autodesk to Newtek´s resources. Let´s be realistic.
Right now, Newtek´s at NAB spreading the word...exactly the place where we want them to be.

Since when is competition fair? Anyway, I was thinking less about Autodesk and more about all those other render engines that were written and I've never even touched, and how much more information there is out there about them. They can't all be from huge companies can they? Not saying you're wrong, just that I don't think LW can afford silence, especially now. The old "NT is a small company so give em a brake and accept it" card doesn't really fly with me anymore.

jasonwestmas
04-12-2012, 08:42 PM
I'm not saying that this is the answer just putting it out there as a possibility.
Newtek may have market research numbers that indicate that increased spending in advertising may not be producing the desired sales they had hoped to see as result of the investment (ROI).

They increased their presence in some professional publications. It's not cheap. But those ads can't break the mindset of the public who think "everyone who is serious about 3D has to use Maya". "All the schools teach Maya. All the jobs are for Maya." It's a tough nut to crack and just putting money in advertising and convention booths isn't going to solve the situation. I'm not saying that they shouldn't advertise. Out of sight, out of mind. I think they need to maintain a presence. But the deeper issue is how much to spend to keep in the public mind.

I'm with many here in wishing that marketing had a magic wand to wave and make everything all better. But, Newtek is a small company with finite resources. They can only do so much. I would like to say that I think the marketing of the last couple of years has been much better than years past.

Yeah, I'm thinking deeper than the old "gotta get the word out" kind of mentality. Pixologic and Luxology come to mind a lot in this context because their software started out small and are becoming extremely popular, if not already extremely popular. Which I believe has a lot to do with their presentations but also all the videos that are available for free and for purchase. I don't mean watered down feature intros, the videos I've seen for ZBrush and Modo have been done with a great deal of depth and pixo in particular have made their software easy to learn because of their own videos and updated online documentation, that are free and quite detailed. While modo has videos inside it's own manual even.

geo_n
04-13-2012, 12:07 AM
I have friends who have used vray on many occasions, and, as any other renderengine, it has issues in certain situations.

Please try it first. Because really its not that hard to download the trial version for maya. All renderers have issues but some have more than others. :D As a TD should be more open minded about workflows and tech. :thumbsup:

Red_Oddity got me curious about Arnold not being a general purpose renderer like lw or vray. That's too bad, but I really can't comment on Arnold because I haven't used it. It looks not so accessible and easy similar to prman if they're using those rib formats. I remember using them for massive to export to prman. It was not fun at all.

Intuition says that DD uses vray for production in most cases many times before. Come on try it already :D

Vray is a renderengine. Its not a full app like lw. I don't see it as a competition but rather a great addition like it is for 3dmax, maya, c4d, etc. We don't even have bucket rendering and micropoly displacement in lw renderer for how many years now.

DigitalSorcery8
04-13-2012, 12:27 AM
Vray is a renderengine. Its not a full app like lw. I don't see it as a competition but rather a great addition like it is for 3dmax, maya, c4d, etc. We don't even have bucket rendering and micropoly displacement in lw renderer for how many years now.

Just seeing how easy it is to output so many different layers/channels is incredible. You have to seriously jump through hoops to get the same out of LW - and that's no matter what plugins you use.

I was originally apathetic about Vray in LW, but not now. We could REALLY use it!

tayotain2
04-13-2012, 12:42 AM
and i didnt see kray too...

geo_n
04-13-2012, 12:54 AM
Right kray needs some exposure. I beg kray dev to bring it to other platforms so it gets more popular and more funding because its really a good renderer. They're working on it maybe. So far its doing well on Sketchup as Podium renderer base. EXR support badly needed.


Wow C4D has all these renderers.

According to C4D’s web site some of the renderers supported by CINEMA 4D include:

3delight (via CineMan*)
AIR (via CineMan*)
Arion Render
FinalRender Stage 2
fryrender
Indigo Renderer
LuxRender
Maxwell Render
mental ray / iray (via m4d)
octane render
Pixar’s RenderMan (via CineMan*)
VRay for C4D

Red_Oddity
04-13-2012, 02:46 AM
I don´t think you are being fair people. Newtek´s marketing for Ligthwave has grown miles from what it was a few years ago. Since Rob Powers took the wheel we can certainly see a steady and constant grow of both Lightwave´s features and perception. Let´s give this guys some more time and I´m sure we´ll soon be rewarded with a great market position and an even greater tool set to match.
It´s also unfair trying to compare a huge marketing machine such as Autodesk to Newtek´s resources. Let´s be realistic.
Right now, Newtek´s at NAB spreading the word...exactly the place where we want them to be.

There's not just a monetary difference between the marketing departments of ADSK and NT, it's the continuous flow of information, there doesn't go a day by that the ADSK name or one of their products is mentioned on some major CG related site. Sure, the monetary aspect and the huge user base are related to it, but it shows the difference between the two companies on that department.

Marketing isn't just making sure you have your 15 minutes of glory, it's making sure you have a daily minute of glory, i guess the saying 'out of sight out of mind' comes to mind.

Not sure what my point was going to be, lost my train of thought somewhere while typing :)

Red_Oddity
04-13-2012, 02:49 AM
Red_Oddity got me curious about Arnold not being a general purpose renderer like lw or vray. That's too bad, but I really can't comment on Arnold because I haven't used it. It looks not so accessible and easy similar to prman if they're using those rib formats. I remember using them for massive to export to prman. It was not fun at all.

Well, don't take my word as truth, as i too, have no actual production experience with Arnold.
I really should email the guys at Solid Angle again to see what has changed over the last year.

Netvudu
04-13-2012, 04:31 AM
Since when is competition fair? Anyway, I was thinking less about Autodesk and more about all those other render engines that were written and I've never even touched, and how much more information there is out there about them. They can't all be from huge companies can they? Not saying you're wrong, just that I don't think LW can afford silence, especially now. The old "NT is a small company so give em a brake and accept it" card doesn't really fly with me anymore.

Agreed. Some of them (*Ahem* Luxology) are more or less Newtek´s size. You got a valid point there.

bazsa73
04-13-2012, 05:55 AM
Since Rob Powers took the wheel...
or rather lifted LW out of the wheelchair

Celshader
04-13-2012, 01:16 PM
Just seeing how easy it is to output so many different layers/channels is incredible. You have to seriously jump through hoops to get the same out of LW - and that's no matter what plugins you use.

I was originally apathetic about Vray in LW, but not now. We could REALLY use it!

From what I have seen, MAX VRay does offer incredible buffer ("channels") support, but MAX VRay cannot actually output render layers (aka "render passes"). It is the host package that handles render layers, not the render engine, and until this year 3DS MAX did not offer render pass management out-of-the-box.

Maya ships with render layer support, so one Maya scene file is capable of rendering multiple passes for the farm using any render engine you like. A shot that requires a VRay car, a VRay tree and a VRay road can be created in one Maya scene file and defined with three render layers. Maya handles all the render pass work, and VRay renders the results.

Until recently most 3DS MAX/VRay artists needed to create a single *.max scene for each render pass. A shot that required a VRay car, a VRay tree and a VRay road was carefully broken out into three separate *.max files -- one for the car, one for the tree and one for the road.

3DS MAX started offering an official way to handle render passes this year, so my MAX co-workers are now researching the best method of managing render passes for 3DS MAX.

If Chaos Group ever offers VRay for LightWave, LightWave will still need to offer a render pass system of its own.

DigitalSorcery8
04-13-2012, 01:20 PM
or rather lifted LW out of the wheelchair

Matter of opinion.

DigitalSorcery8
04-13-2012, 01:22 PM
If Chaos Group ever offers VRay for LightWave, LightWave will still need to offer a render pass system of its own.

VERY interesting.

It looks like Newtek needs to SERIOUSLY address this - sooner rather than the typical later.

Making something like this easily accessible and understandable in LW would make software decisions much easier. :)

erikals
04-13-2012, 01:44 PM
Lightwave needs to show more up-to-date examples on what the render engine can pull off...
for now though,

Lightwave render - Iron Sky
http://youtu.be/DRVAhJwoIi0

Lightwave render - MIR
http://youtu.be/ER9oD1hZCMM

Lightwave render - TV2 intros
http://youtu.be/PUIaVC7IKJc

Lightwave render - Iron Man
http://youtu.be/xxNHBQdYi78

Lightwave render - CSI crime scene
http://youtu.be/7U4URSz94ns

Lightwave render - Terra Nova
http://youtu.be/RoI6NDblT84

 

Celshader
04-13-2012, 02:09 PM
VERY interesting.

It looks like Newtek needs to SERIOUSLY address this - sooner rather than the typical later.

Making something like this easily accessible and understandable in LW would make software decisions much easier. :)

I personally would prefer that render pass support get addressed first, before moving on to deeper buffer support.

We've had a custom LightWave render pass system in place at work since January 2011. We can work around any missing buffer/channel information with extra render passes. We can also export custom-defined buffers alongside the beauty passes right now with Denis Pontonnier's DP_Filter (using Node Editor Pixel Filter, Node Editor Image Filter and Get Global Buffer).

From what I've seen, artists cannot work around the absence of a render pass management system with superior buffer support alone.

DigitalSorcery8
04-13-2012, 02:14 PM
I personally would prefer that render pass support get addressed first, before moving on to deeper buffer support.
I'm behind you 100%!

NT has done so much work on the renderer, why not get serious with renderpass support?

Now THAT would be a nice update to see in LW11. :bowdown:

Cageman
04-13-2012, 04:46 PM
This is why I invested time in both PassPort, and later on, Janus... I can not even begin to imagine how hard it would have been for us to use LW without Janus in several of the productions we have been, and are doing currently. I've said it before, and I say it again; Janus is a system so well thought out, it is almost scary to what level you actually can access data and also manipulate for different passes.

Recently a new version supporting Unified Sampling in LW11 was released, and soon, it seems, the first implementation of Offline Editing of scenes (meaning, you don't need to load any scenes into memory) will come. That feature will be extremely usefull.

I agree that NT should prioritize Pass management rendering, but there will be some time before that will be fully implemented and working.

geo_n
04-13-2012, 11:15 PM
From what I have seen, MAX VRay does offer incredible buffer ("channels") support, but MAX VRay cannot actually output render layers (aka "render passes"). It is the host package that handles render layers, not the render engine, and until this year 3DS MAX did not offer render pass management out-of-the-box.

Maya ships with render layer support, so one Maya scene file is capable of rendering multiple passes for the farm using any render engine you like. A shot that requires a VRay car, a VRay tree and a VRay road can be created in one Maya scene file and defined with three render layers. Maya handles all the render pass work, and VRay renders the results.

Until recently most 3DS MAX/VRay artists needed to create a single *.max scene for each render pass. A shot that required a VRay car, a VRay tree and a VRay road was carefully broken out into three separate *.max files -- one for the car, one for the tree and one for the road.

3DS MAX started offering an official way to handle render passes this year, so my MAX co-workers are now researching the best method of managing render passes for 3DS MAX.

If Chaos Group ever offers VRay for LightWave, LightWave will still need to offer a render pass system of its own.

Sorry you're mistaken. 3dmax had scenestate since version 9(circa 2006, before I even become a 3dartist) that does what you say it doesn't which is in one max file, all renderlayers are saved and any variation of light properties, light transform, object properties, camera transform, camera properties, layer properties, layer assignment of objects, materials, environment. Just keep sending to backburner without operning different scenes in max.
Lw had something similar called Surpass, but I never used it and now its dead. What lw has urrently is janus which still needs to breakout scenes for simple passes because layout and modeller are separate, janus has to deal with that limitation. You have to save variations of objects if you need a specific pass. You don't need this in 3dmax.
Sorry but it is sounding too much lw worship here.
You can't model in vray? Seriously funny comment not to have vray. Why people feel threatened of vray.

DigitalSorcery8
04-13-2012, 11:59 PM
Sorry but it is sounding too much lw worship here.
You can't model in vray? Seriously funny comment not to have vray. Why people feel threatened of vray.

I don't think it's that.

It's probably more that everyone is not completely familiar with V-Ray and its capabilities. If a studio doesn't use all of the passes that V-Ray can output - as in Cagemans case - they don't know how useful it can be for other projects. After seeing the V-Ray videos... it is EXTREMELY useful and would help a great deal.

Of course a little of it might be trying to compensate for LW's lack of this feature. ;)

Dexter2999
04-14-2012, 12:04 AM
Why people feel threatened of vray.


Vray eats babies.

vncnt
04-14-2012, 01:04 AM
The people who dislike vray gives me the impression they don't like it because people are doing great things with it with less effort that it makes cg work less prestigious, boring, etc.

Many people in this industry try to find something to make their work/art unique.
Guess this is part of the mechanism that makes them (us / me) enthusiastic about a product.

So being able to tweak (nearly) a-n-y-t-h-i-n-g would be an interesting ($elling) feature for LW12.

Think about inventing alternative production routes (point clouds, shrink wrap, deformation, motion/keyframe systems, etc).

robpowers3d
04-14-2012, 01:27 AM
or rather lifted LW out of the wheelchair

Keep the faith guys and gals, we are just getting started ;)

bazsa73
04-14-2012, 07:11 AM
Hei Rob, when do we get full nodal LW? :)

robertoortiz
04-14-2012, 07:17 AM
Keep the faith guys and gals, we are just getting started ;)

We do, and thanks for all your hard work.
I mean it.
-R

jasonwestmas
04-14-2012, 08:15 AM
Keep the faith guys and gals, we are just getting started ;)

Looking forward to Lightwave stuff I can't find anywhere else.

silviotoledo
04-14-2012, 08:36 AM
It seems like Autodesk wants to kick Newtek from the game :). Competition is not fair anyway.

I also have to agree that V ray, Renderman, Mental Ray, Arnold, Brazil, Final Render, Octane, Maxwell are more acurrated in terms of photorealism than Lightwave itself. Maybe because they're unbiased, I don't understand, but they're dedicated rendering engines. All the other softwares uses it, except Lightwave.

Sad OCTANE is available to MODO and not for LIGHTWAVE actually. Yeah Autodesk bought OCTANE indirectly.

I see LW community saying Lightwave is the fast one in render, but it's not what I see when I do comparison tests with V Ray and Modo.

I think LW render is good and very usefull, but it's not the best ( in terms of photorrealism ). That's why I thing Newtek must also open a door for other render engines. But one reason lightwave is in the game is the rendering so I really don't know what to say.

Hope see improvements in LW CA, so people will not use MAYA to animate and lightwave to render.

silviotoledo
04-14-2012, 08:39 AM
And just to remember what will come...

AFTER CS6 WILL DO REALTIME 3D LOGO ANIMATION based in GPU.

So, there will be a new big company in the game to bite the TV Logos marketing soon.

lino.grandi
04-14-2012, 11:39 AM
Sad OCTANE is available to MODO and not for LIGHTWAVE actually. Yeah Autodesk bought OCTANE indirectly.


http://www.refractivesoftware.com/

Isn't a LW logo what I see among the others?

jasonwestmas
04-14-2012, 12:30 PM
Silvio probably wants an octane render plugin like the competition has.

Dexter2999
04-14-2012, 01:34 PM
I'd be very happy to find Worley working on a GPU preview renderer.

50one
04-14-2012, 02:44 PM
I'd be very happy to find Worley working on a GPU preview renderer.

VPR not good enough? I would rather see him working on full featured final renderer something like arnold and G3...:D oh and maybe something better than fume fx;)would be cool to have even a slight info on what he is working on and when roughly we can expect anything.:thumbsup:

erikals
04-14-2012, 02:59 PM
Silvio probably wants an octane render plugin like the competition has.

doesn't the LW-Octane plugin work?

 

jasonwestmas
04-14-2012, 03:06 PM
I didn't even know there was a LW =>Octane plugin, it's not listed on the octane features site.

erikals
04-14-2012, 03:20 PM
bit info on it,
http://forums.newtek.com/showpost.php?p=1221353&postcount=15

Celshader
04-14-2012, 03:28 PM
Sorry you're mistaken. 3dmax had scenestate since version 9(circa 2006, before I even become a 3dartist) that does what you say it doesn't which is in one max file, all renderlayers are saved and any variation of light properties, light transform, object properties, camera transform, camera properties, layer properties, layer assignment of objects, materials, environment. Just keep sending to backburner without operning different scenes in max.

My MAX co-worker with 12+ years of MAX experience told me about Scene States earlier this year. He said Scene States could not be trusted for production work. So all of my MAX co-workers are managing several separate *.max files for each shot. One *.max file per render.

It's only this year that MAX offered a reliable means of render pass management, so my MAX co-workers are now researching the best means of render pass management for 3DS MAX.



Lw had something similar called Surpass, but I never used it and now its dead. What lw has urrently is janus which still needs to breakout scenes for simple passes because layout and modeller are separate, janus has to deal with that limitation.

I have no experience with those systems. I wrote a Python-based proprietary render pass management system at work for LightWave. The original scene is never sent to the render farm -- only modified copies which are stored in a temp folder. The "scene state" information is stored in a folder near the original *.lws scene file. The text-based *.lws file format makes tools like this easy to set up.


You have to save variations of objects if you need a specific pass.

Not us. Right now our proprietary render pass system can create Ambient Occlusion, Crud, Fresnel, XYZ-Local, XYZ-World, RGB-Depth (Fog), Depth (Fog), and other custom passes using Denis Pontonnier's Node Editor Pixel Filter. Two weeks ago I discovered Denis Pontonnier's Get Global Buffer node, so most of this information now gets rendered alongside the beauty passes.

I also plan to make the system capable of generating custom-surfaced objects on-the-fly within the next few months. That way that the AmbOcc passes can work with Unseen by Camera.


You don't need this in 3dmax.

That may be true as of 3DS MAX 2012. Up until now my 3DS MAX co-workers have used no render pass system at all to assist them in their production work. Not even Scene States.


Sorry but it is sounding too much lw worship here.

I stopped worshiping LightWave around mid-2009. ;D However, I've successfully used LightWave for film, commerical, freelance, prototyping and broadcast VFX since 1999, so I'm happy to keep using what works for me.

You should use whatever works for you. If you like VRay and 3DS MAX, you should use VRay and 3DS MAX.

jburford
04-14-2012, 03:31 PM
Silvio,

more accurate than what? The actual render, or the "adjusted" images that are done in Photoshop, or Nuke or such?

and how in the world can you compare apples and oranges? speed comparisons, in which way? how can you set up the scene and lightings and settings in different apps, to have an actual comparison of something?

Cageman
04-14-2012, 04:39 PM
as in Cagemans case - they don't know how useful it can be for other projects. After seeing the V-Ray videos... it is EXTREMELY useful and would help a great deal.

Sorry, but you are very far from the truth in your "assement" of things.

Let me just say that this is something I've seen in other forums as well; the VRay pipeline breaking down so much that LW-artists has to jump in and save the production...

I'm just saying that I've seen this from users who tend to work at large facilities... I've not experienced it myself, btw..

You can give and take whatever you want from that, of course... And, to this, add some of my best friends having to dig out old Mental Ray to do things, apparently, a lot harder to do in Vray...

Maybe it is related to the implementation of MR in Maya? I don't know... but "going back" to MR was, at the time, something they had to do to solve the problem.

In all honesty here... lets get real.. THERE IS NO ******* PERFECT RENDERENGINE, SO LETS STOP PRENTENDING VRAY IS, OK?

Thanks!

Cageman
04-14-2012, 04:40 PM
All the other softwares uses it, except Lightwave.

Last time I ran Octane, it worked perfectly well with the provided LW exporter.

Cageman
04-14-2012, 04:48 PM
I stopped worshiping LightWave around mid-2009. ;D However, I've successfully used LightWave for film, commerical, freelance, prototyping and broadcast VFX since 1999, so I'm happy to keep using what works for me.

Yep.. I have to agree... And... I have to add that LW-artists (the GOOD artists) are extremely versatile and knows every aspect of the production... something I truly can see now when I'm in the position of evaluating people.

A solid, good LW-artist will allways be better than the average Maya artist, even when using Maya.

Just saying...

DigitalSorcery8
04-14-2012, 05:10 PM
A solid, good LW-artist will allways be better than the average Maya artist, even when using Maya.

Just saying...

So then you could say that a solid, good Maya artist will always be better than a solid, good LW artist since Maya is far more powerful than LW and can do more within Maya than a LW artist can do in LW.

Right?

DigitalSorcery8
04-14-2012, 05:11 PM
Sorry, but you are very far from the truth in your "assement" of things.

I'm only going by the thread in the modo forums where you do not seem to understand where geo was coming from when he is describing all of the items within V-Ray. That's all.

robertoortiz
04-14-2012, 05:23 PM
Edited...

Cageman
04-15-2012, 07:16 AM
So then you could say that a solid, good Maya artist will always be better than a solid, good LW artist since Maya is far more powerful than LW and can do more within Maya than a LW artist can do in LW.

Right?

Sure... but from what I've seen, Maya-artists seem to specialize in one or two areas, or areas that are close to eachother, such as modeling/texturing/lighting, for example, and have very little or no idea how do do dynamics, rigging/skinning etc. There are, of course, Maya-users who knows a great deal about Maya and are also versatile with scripting and even coding, but, those types of artists are much more rare, compared to what I see from LW-users, where pretty much everyone use a much wider range of tools in their day to day work.

RebelHill, for example, is one of the most talanted riggers in the LW-community, and has created videotutorials about rigging and also developed RHRiggit, and, of course, he knows a great deal about MotionCapture and how to work with MotionBuilder, and have done tutorials about that as well.

He recently released a tutorial for LW11 rendering reagarding Global Illumination and how some aspects of LW11 will help making a more stable solution, without the use of brute-force MC, in situations where you have deformation on your animated things.

While RH is as rare as those Maya-know it all artists, it tends to be that if I ask an LW-animator about rendering, he usually knows a fair bit about it, which is something that doesn't happen too often when asking Maya-animators about Mental ray. It isn't uncommon these days to meet LW-artists who are also familiar with other applications; usually Maya and/or MotionBuilder and, of course, Modo and ZBrush, and, again, most Maya-users I tend to meet only knows Maya and ZBrush.

For a small team, these types of generalists are extremely usefull, since they can jump in and use the appropriate tool for the task at hand. I'm not saying that specialization is bad, because without it, there wouldn't be those topnotch productions out there where every aspect is carefully done by people who are the best there is at thier specific craft, but you tend to need more staff if going for specialization approach, which is extremely expensive.

Which, again, makes me look at the LW-talentpool, and, my gosh, I see a lot of them are familiar with not just LW; hence my notion that if you need well rounded generalists, LW is the talentpool to look at first.

This, of course, goes hand in hand with LWs renderengine, which is, technically, one of the easiest to use, and getting it up and running on a renderfarm through Muster is a two-minute exercise. Only one other engine out there is as easy to setup through Muster... and that is Modo. The reason for that is most likely that there aren't any license-servers needed, which, quickly becomes challenging for an artist to manage; you really need IT-skills to wrangle that stuff.

This post became quite long, hopefully it answers your question. And, with LW11 and Modo, I stand by my comment that there isn't really a reason for us to use VRay.

DigitalSorcery8
04-15-2012, 12:17 PM
I pretty much agree with just about everything you said. IMO too, LW users are more generalists and know more about the pipeline details and how to do them as opposed to the average Maya/Max/XSI artist. That may or may not be true - I don't know for certain - but that is how I view things as well. That's why I've considered LW generalists for our studio - I think these "types" of people will be more adept in doing all-around work as opposed to using another "higher-end" package where the idea of generalist is not stressed as much.

While I've head very good things about rendering with modo, IMO I still think a V-Ray workflow would make compositing FAR more easier than either LW w/Janus or modo. But since I am not an expert in this area - I will defer to the people that are very familiar with V-Ray and modo. :)

Celshader
04-15-2012, 12:55 PM
I pretty much agree with just about everything you said. IMO too, LW users are more generalists and know more about the pipeline details and how to do them as opposed to the average Maya/Max/XSI artist. That may or may not be true - I don't know for certain

FWIW, I have met Maya/MAX/Houdini generalists. They do exist. :thumbsup:

I'm sure XSI generalists exist, too. I have met few XSI artists, though, because few shops out here use XSI.


- but that is how I view things as well. That's why I've considered LW generalists for our studio - I think these "types" of people will be more adept in doing all-around work as opposed to using another "higher-end" package where the idea of generalist is not stressed as much.

This was the approach taken by my workplace. So far it's worked well, since any given LightWave lighter can turn on a dime and model, composite, rig, surface, calculate fire/water or animate a shot. This has been useful during tight broadcast schedules.


I still think a V-Ray workflow would make compositing FAR more easier than either LW w/Janus or modo. But since I am not an expert in this area - I will defer to the people that are very familiar with V-Ray and modo. :)

If you can afford it, I strongly recommend using trial and error to see what works best. Download the 30-day MAX/Maya trial and download the free 30-day VRay demo. Purchase the $25 modo 601 trial if it is available. See how far you can go with compositing in MAX/Maya/VRay and modo.

We use no render pass management system for 3DS MAX and VRay at work at this time. Each piece of a shot must be rendered with an individual *.max file. However, MAX/VRay offers tremendous buffer support for each of those render passes.

Maya ships with "render layers" built-in, so you get render pass management in addition to VRay buffers. However, my co-workers keep telling me that MAX VRay "integrates better" than Maya VRay. I do not know specifics, but your experimentation should uncover any differences.

I have no opinion about LightWave and Janus, since we use a custom-built render pass system for LightWave. Our proprietary system relies on a combination of exrTrader and DP_Filter.

DigitalSorcery8
04-15-2012, 01:43 PM
FWIW, I have met Maya/MAX/Houdini generalists. They do exist. :thumbsup:

I'm sure XSI generalists exist, too. I have met few XSI artists, though, because few shops out here use XSI.
:agree: But as I'm sure you would most likely agree, the ratio of generalists to specialists is better for LW than Maya/Max/Houdini - simply because of the way LW is set up. And there are XSI generalists too - I've checked in various forums and fortunately they are available.



This was the approach taken by my workplace. So far it's worked well, since any given LightWave lighter can turn on a dime and model, composite, rig, surface, calculate fire/water or animate a shot. This has been useful during tight broadcast schedules.
I have a feeling we will end up the same - and will also have to hit the ground running relatively quickly. Having used LW for more than 15 years (and still nowhere near an expert) I do know that in the proper hands it is a gem.


If you can afford it, I strongly recommend using trial and error to see what works best. Download the 30-day MAX/Maya trial and download the free 30-day VRay demo. Purchase the $25 modo 601 trial if it is available. See how far you can go with compositing in MAX/Maya/VRay and modo.
Unfortunately that's not going to happen. I won't have the time and more importantly I don't have the learning capacity any more to quickly understand these packages. I've been happy enough with simple passes in LW and Fusion, but I know from watching many videos and listening to others that a better pass system can greatly increase speed and workflow - and most importantly reduce time spent re-rendering.

Of course there's nothing preventing a LW-centric workflow and rendering in XSI with V-Ray or Arnold. From what I've seen of Arnold, it is much closer to "plug and play" like the LW renderer is than any other engine available. Something tells me that if everything works out, I'll have a crew in place before we've got the pipeline issue resolved.

Thanks! :thumbsup:

silviotoledo
04-15-2012, 04:41 PM
doesn't the LW-Octane plugin work?



It worked for the old version. It seems Octane will not have the LW plugin available anymore for the new versions. Anyway we can use other packs ( like Blender ) to export throught collada.

It would be a great idea for lightwave to tell these people Lightwave is alive and solid. It seems they still don't know about it, but once AD is owner of Octane and Newtek is a big problem to AD I don't know...

I just preffer Lightwave because it's easier and save me a lot of time, but we really need to be connected to the competition in all 3D areas.

I also think LW development team now is really good. The addition of Rob, Lino and Matt are doing a big difference once they were previously hi-end users and now they are at the development team to tell exactly where improvements are needed with user based experience.

So I really believe when Rob said they're just starting.

I also think K Ray is a powerfull renderer that sometimes looks the same quality as V ray and I really would like to see it incorporated like Max did with V ray.

faulknermano
04-15-2012, 05:43 PM
. Two weeks ago I discovered Denis Pontonnier's Get Global Buffer node, so most of this information now
gets rendered alongside the beauty passes.

Note that some data passes can produce funky results: ie spot/point position; however, they can still be usable.

Have a look at shaderMeister, too: something I've not be able to implement



I also plan to make the system capable of generating
custom-surfaced objects on-the-fly within the next few months. That
way that the AmbOcc passes can work with Unseen by Camera.

If Python/SDK offers a programmatic interface to .lwo editing (which I think it does) then it would spare you what I had to go through, which was manually editing lwos and keeping them sane. Therefore, I reckon it would be fairly straightforward. One feature I found interesting to code was partial overrides - overriding only particular channels - which may or may not be particularly useful to some, but it did tickle my curiosity in regards to the leverage you can have when you have a way to modify lwos.



He said Scene States could not be trusted for production work.


What I will say is, on the Maya side, that Maya' render layers, for all its native implementation and depth, is .... ermmm. It breaks without a particular context, its error logging is stupendously unhelpful, and often infeasible to troubleshoot scientifically without a research grant. As a system, as it stands, it is a time-consuming process to set-up layers or passes because there's no intelligent consolidation of its capabilities. (I'm saying this from the standpoint of a Maya TD, who spends 95% more time rendering (and setting up renders) in Maya than LW.)

What I am trying to get at is that there is a difference between features and actual capability/performance. I think people are mixing up the technical issues, which they won't have control over anyway if LW implemented a 'native' method, and mixing it up with workflow, which they won't have control over, too, unless they coded something and 'took charge'.

As a dev, I have a real reason why I don't like the fact that I can't get surface overrides in LW without having to write to disk; I had to overcome the challenge myself. As a dev I enjoy some conveniences of Maya's architecture. But as a user (e.g non-dev), if the system is so buggy that it takes me days longer to get my job done, then what's the use of the sophistication?

That's why, at the end of the day, despite Janus's so-called 'limitations', it's giving me a fast, flexible, and _smart_ workflow that I don't have in Maya's render layers. I enjoy using it more because it works - and if it doesn't, I fix it. :)

aidenvfx
04-15-2012, 07:08 PM
While I really (really) like fxguide stuff, they tend to stick to the "industry standards" meaning they are AutoDesk-centric for the most part. They give nods to other software that is deemed tops in its field like C4D for motion graphics or SynthEyes and PFMatchit.

They mentioned the Newtek booth in their NAB coverage last year and I teased Mike Seymore that is seemed like the word "Lightwave" burned his tongue to say. He replied, "I don't have anything against it. I've just never worked with it." Which is sad, because he has done a considerable amount of work with his company. But "Maya" is the first thing that comes to his mind when he thinks 3D, I'd be willing to guess.

That is the key. They covered all the software that they do training on which makes since since that is where there contacts are.


I enjoy FXGUIDE but am not surprised to see little LW coverage there. However it appears that much of the 3D world has started to watch LW again just look at CMIVFX and many of the 3D magazines starting to cover LW once again so maybe down the road FXGUIDE will cover LW more.

Dexter2999
04-15-2012, 07:52 PM
so maybe down the road FXGUIDE will cover LW more.

I think when a project becomes popular enough and they have a Post department that isn't ashamed to say that they use LW. Then FXGuide will report it. LW just isn't "sexy".

Mr Rid
04-16-2012, 11:07 PM
Well sorry LW about excluding you.

So perhaps I can suggest that I speak to someone and just amend the source article?

I am in LA now and at NAB from the weekend. Would you recommend I just turn up on the NewTek booth? Who would be the best person to talk to re GI rendering with LW?

Mike Seymour
fxguide

ps
I really dont hate LW. :-)

So, why was LW omitted? What reason could be other than intentional?

As any longtime LW user knows, this happens a lot, and I've been trying to get a straight answer about it for over a decade. Speculation and 'conspiracy' rumours abound but no one is fessing up. Whats the deal?

Yog
04-17-2012, 02:04 AM
So, why was LW omitted? What reason could be other than intentional?

As any longtime LW user knows, this happens a lot, and I've been trying to get a straight answer about it for over a decade. Speculation and 'conspiracy' rumours abound but no one is fessing up. Whats the deal?
There is no conspiracy.
Outside of certain industries in the US, Lightwave is practically un-known.
I would even go as far as to say that in the UK / Europe, all the renderers / software packages mentioned in the FXPHD article have far greater exposure and usage than Lightwave.

It's very rare in the UK for me to come across another Lightwave user (the last new one was several years ago), and in my entire career I've only ever come across one client who has ever heard of it (however most have heard of 3DS MAX).

Being cocooned in the Lightwave forums, where everyone is a LW userer, and every usage of LW is heralded, it's easy to get the impression that Lightwave is more widely used throught the greater 3D industry than it actually is.

tayotain2
04-17-2012, 03:08 AM
im pretty sure im the only lightwave user here in Lapland...

erikals
04-17-2012, 05:30 AM
...It seems Octane will not have the LW plugin available anymore for the new versions. Anyway we can use other packs ( like Blender ) to export throught collada.

didn't find that info, where did you get this info from?
anyway, seems unfortunately to be buggy...

jasonwestmas
04-17-2012, 06:53 AM
didn't find that info, where did you get this info from?
anyway, seems unfortunately to be buggy...

That tends to be the case when a plugin isn't officially supported.

papou
04-17-2012, 08:06 AM
So, why was LW omitted? What reason could be other than intentional?

As any longtime LW user knows, this happens a lot, and I've been trying to get a straight answer about it for over a decade. Speculation and 'conspiracy' rumours abound but no one is fessing up. Whats the deal?

... Same feeling in the Fusion Community too...

jasonwestmas
04-17-2012, 09:10 AM
... Same feeling in the Fusion Community too...

All I hear is nuke nuke nuke. I guess it's good, I don't composite though.

silviotoledo
04-17-2012, 08:21 PM
yeah, octane had a lightwave plugin, but it was not anounced a lightwave plugin for the new versions anymore. That's what I read at their site.

---------------------------------------------------------------
http://www.refractivesoftware.com/features.html <-- see on this link

Octane Render (Commercial Version) includes free plugins for:

Autodesk 3D Studio Max
Autodesk Maya
Autodesk Softimage XSI
Blender
Maxon Cinema 4D
Sketchup
Modo
------------------------------------------------------------------

But lightwave is doing a great job and will back to the game soon!

Red_Oddity
04-18-2012, 02:20 AM
All I hear is nuke nuke nuke. I guess it's good, I don't composite though.

To quote a VFX TD i know, and whole heartily agree with 'They both suck equally'

zardoz
04-18-2012, 03:02 AM
here in portugal I know two more guys...and that's it.

jasonwestmas
04-18-2012, 08:15 AM
To quote a VFX TD i know, and whole heartily agree with 'They both suck equally'

haha, isn't that the case with all software ;) They all suck. Or was this TD being serious.

Lightwolf
04-18-2012, 08:22 AM
haha, isn't that the case with all software ;) They all suck. Or was this TD being serious.
Even eyeon, makers of the legendary "We suck less!" t-shirts.;)

Cheers,
Mike

jasonwestmas
04-18-2012, 08:25 AM
Even eyeon, makers of the legendary "We suck less!" t-shirts.;)

Cheers,
Mike

haha, I'd buy that.

Lightwolf
04-18-2012, 08:30 AM
haha, I'd buy that.
Sorry, not for sale. Mind you, it suffered from too much wearing and consecutive washing anyhow. ;)

Cheers,
Mike

jasonwestmas
04-18-2012, 08:40 AM
Sorry, not for sale. Mind you, it suffered from too much wearing and consecutive washing anyhow. ;)

Cheers,
Mike

Like the town bicycle?

silviotoledo
04-18-2012, 09:10 AM
here in portugal I know two more guys...and that's it.

Just for curiosity I'd like to know how many licences of lightwave 10 and 11 have been sold. This will reveal the amount of users, but I think this information is confidential. Is it?

Read somewhere that Max sold 6 millions licences. Too Much if real.

Adobe wich is around 5 times bigger than Autodesk must sell a lot of photoshops.

Lightwave have been too popular in motion graphics era but is not so popular actually. Hope we will revert this soon.

IRON SKY is a good opportunity of marketing to show Lightwave power.

Battle for Terra too, but they've used Maya for CA :( and CA on that film is not complex. Absent of more Lw users?

erikals
04-18-2012, 10:37 AM
Battle for Terra,

LW is not that good for Cartoon CA,
two reasons > lack of Lattice, and good bendy rigs... (and more)

Lightwolf
04-18-2012, 02:00 PM
Read somewhere that Max sold 6 millions licences. Too Much if real.

That is way too much... even if you chop away a 0 it's more than 5 times the amount that I've heard as being the most reliable maximum number of licenses in use.
Based on employments figures in the vfx industry in the US I've also extrapolated and would guess that there's no more than 40-50,000 people working in vfx world-wide (and that goes beyond 3D). Obviously vfx is just a part of the market, but that should be a good ballpark figure.

Cheers,
Mike

Cageman
04-18-2012, 03:42 PM
There is no conspiracy.
Outside of certain industries in the US, Lightwave is practically un-known.
I would even go as far as to say that in the UK / Europe, all the renderers / software packages mentioned in the FXPHD article have far greater exposure and usage than Lightwave.

No.. the engines I see being used and talked about most are Vray, Arnold, Modo, Mray, Final Render. There are renderengines in that article that just doesn't cut it; heck... even Electric Image renderengine was used massively on Star Wars - EP1 (the spacebattles and the pod-race environments especially, from what I've heard at least), and it is not mentioned in the article either, and it is waaay more usefull as a renderengine compared to Max Scanline....

FXGuide has covered shows like BSG and Drive in the past so they should be extremely familiar with LWs renderengine and its use in the industry.

As Mr.Rid said... it is quite a puzzle to figure out why LW was omitted, since it is such a strong contributor to the fast-paced production that TV-series tends to have, and, of course, based on the fact that FXGuide has covered articles before, with lots of LW-renders.

MentalFish
04-18-2012, 03:55 PM
Don't you know it is politically incorrect and uncool to like and talk positively about LightWave? It's far more chic to go declare ones love for Houdini, even if you don't know how to use it. Just admit it, LightWave is dead and has been so since the 90'ies, at least thats what I heard in 2002.

^ I am being silly, just in case somebody was wondering :neener:

Dexter2999
04-18-2012, 04:26 PM
I see people mentioning the article and being...shall we say "irked"?, that it mentions little known render engines and not LW. Now I only skimmed the article and didn't read it in depth but I did catch the part near the beginning where it specifically mentions that writing a render engine isn't all that difficult for those in an academic environment (and I believe that is what these little known render engines represent) but those engines prove to lack features necessary to production environments, which is where the article goes on to site the better known engines.

Or at least that was my take on the article.

Dexter2999
04-18-2012, 04:29 PM
Just admit it, LightWave is dead and has been so since the 90'ies, at least thats what I heard in 2002.

Was that at the wake AD was having for LW? I heard it had an open bar (don't drink the kool-aid) and a free seat of Maya (with paid annual subscription.)





(Also being silly)

Greenlaw
04-18-2012, 04:42 PM
Battle for Terra,

LW is not that good for Cartoon CA,
two reasons > lack of Lattice, and good bendy rigs... (and more)
Here are two old 'cartoony' bits we created entirely in Lightwave:

Banjo Kazooie: X06 Trailer (http://www.gametrailers.com/video/x06-trailer-banjo-kazooie-nuts/13586)

...and...

Banjo Kazooie: E3 2008 Trailer (http://www.gametrailers.com/video/e3-2008-banjo-kazooie-nuts/36229)

I thought they were pretty good. (I'm biased though because I wrote and drew the storyboard for the first one.) :D

G.

silviotoledo
04-18-2012, 05:20 PM
Here some work I really love from Bittanimation. Everything Lightwave:

http://youtu.be/P7CvdHr47ZM
http://youtu.be/F8cHLoDjpvg
http://www.youtube.com/user/BittAnimation/videos

Lot's of cartoon characters done in Lightwave. Several cool cute animal models from maurocor.

But it seems the orther Bitt Studio in mexico moved to Maya.

Mr. Wilde
04-18-2012, 05:41 PM
I'd be interested in actual benchmarks. How does the LW renderer perform against other renderers with a sample scene that looks the same across all packages?

erikals
04-18-2012, 05:56 PM
Silvio / Greenlaw

yep, but it's still far from optimal for the job, compared to Blender, Maya, Messiah
all of these do bendyrigs and lattice flawlessly...

Mr Rid
04-18-2012, 06:23 PM
There is no conspiracy.
Outside of certain industries in the US, Lightwave is practically un-known.
I would even go as far as to say that in the UK / Europe, all the renderers / software packages mentioned in the FXPHD article have far greater exposure and usage than Lightwave.

It's very rare in the UK for me to come across another Lightwave user (the last new one was several years ago), and in my entire career I've only ever come across one client who has ever heard of it (however most have heard of 3DS MAX).

Being cocooned in the Lightwave forums, where everyone is a LW userer, and every usage of LW is heralded, it's easy to get the impression that Lightwave is more widely used throught the greater 3D industry than it actually is.

More speculation. So, FXguide only covers FX in Europe? The author of this article is obviously aware of Lightwave.

If the explanation is 'because the European LW market is so miniscule compared to Octane, Brazil or Keyshot (I've never head of), and even though LW is used significantly in movies and TV (Emmy winning) that show (some produced) in Europe, it isnt worth mentioning except as a precursor to Modo which is easily more popular in Europe(?).' I guess the Newtek-Europe distributor is some lonely back storage room with crickets quietly chirping. So is NT marketing in the doghouse again? Are the broiling Texas summers making them too sleepy? Whose palm's gotta get greased? Are NT's pockets too shallow? Did someone look at someone's girlfriend the wrong way? Is LW just too darn unsexy?

Among the several LW demo clips in my YouTube channel, UK, Germany, France and Netherlands are usually in the top 10 (if not 5) viewer demogs (Japan is even ahead of US in some) totaling tens of thousands of views, so someone over there has at least heard of LW. Near the end of Flay, I mostly saw LW job listings in London and I know two LW animators who moved there for that reason.

And would still not explain why LW is so oft skipped over by American authored articles on production where LW was used (Cinefex being a big culprit).

Not that this article claims to be comprehensive (Blender, Vue, LUX, Fry), I would think the point of a rundown on renderers is to inform about significant production renderers, not to merely stick to what's already commonly known. I dont expect a straight answer, but the mystery continues.

zarti
04-19-2012, 05:06 AM
Don't you know it is politically incorrect and uncool to like and talk positively about LightWave? It's far more chic to go declare ones love for Houdini, even if you don't know how to use it. Just admit it, LightWave is dead and has been so since the 90'ies, at least thats what I heard in 2002.

^ I am being silly, just in case somebody was wondering :neener:

ah , .. ok .

mikeseymour
04-19-2012, 07:10 AM
I just wanted to loop back around and give you guys some feedback. I hate people saying they will do things and I never see follow up.

I met with Rob Powers yesterday and we did a short interview on LW.
When I get some relevant images from the team - I will add a section to the Art of Rendering story on LW.

We will also be doing a separate story on VFX-3D in Episodic TV. As LW has such a strong history in this space - LW will, of course, be featured.

I cant say when this will come out.

I also wanted to thank those of you who sent images through for the story - some really nice work.

Well I am dead on my feet in Vegas from NAB... but again thanks to Rob for not punching me yesterday and being so keen to work with us.

Mike Seymour

erikals
04-19-2012, 07:16 AM
great stuff, looking forward to the read :]

thank you for looking into it, lightwavers can rest now ;]

best regards,
erik

jasonwestmas
04-19-2012, 07:26 AM
Thanks for your excellent writing Mike Seymour! I don't recall such detailed 3D graphics articles coming around so often. HDRI magazine would have some very informative stuff occasionally but now that's gone.

Go TV-FX!

Bliz
04-19-2012, 03:22 PM
It's very rare in the UK for me to come across another Lightwave user (the last new one was several years ago), and in my entire career I've only ever come across one client who has ever heard of it (however most have heard of 3DS MAX).


I know loads of Lightwave users in and around London. The thing is that all of them know and use another package (usually maya).

The curse and blessing of LW is how easy it is to use. An artist can afford to learn enough to be competent in LW without using up all the brain cells needed to get mental ray working properly in maya.

Back when we were making Captain Scarlet (2003 - 2005) we taught loads of maya artists enough LW to light scenes perfectly well. By the end of that show there must have been 60 to 70 LW users. Then they all scattered and had to use maya and max to pay the bills due to there only being a few LW jobs.

I'm sure we can ramp up again if a big LW project comes into London again :)

Andy Meyer
04-20-2012, 04:03 PM
just look back what NT made the last five years before 2010? no conspiracy, that was NT. looks like some things changed in the positive direction the last 12 months or so. but real improvement isnt possible as long as LW is just a side product, therefore LW must be independent from NT. this is just my opinien.

jasonwestmas
04-20-2012, 04:14 PM
but real improvement isnt possible as long as LW is just a side product, therefore LW must be independent from NT. this is just my opinien.

Why, are you going to buy Lightwave from them with your own company? =)

DigitalSorcery8
04-20-2012, 04:15 PM
but real improvement isnt possible as long as LW is just a side product, therefore LW must be independent from NT. this is just my opinien.

This is my opinion as well.

Unless Newtek sells LW to another company - obviously NOT AD - LW will continue to be plagued by poor owner decisions. It's only wishful thinking since this will not happen. Which is too bad for LW.

In the meantime we live with what we have.

erikals
04-22-2012, 10:07 PM
 
just sent Mike some info on K-ray (http://www.kraytracing.com/)...

 

papou
04-23-2012, 03:19 AM
i hope FPrime will not be forgotten.
I think it was the start of the interactive revolution.

mikeseymour
04-25-2012, 10:03 PM
I have added to the renderering story on fxguide with a LW section. As I posted earlier we will be doing more.

Huge thanks to the users who sent me images - i could only use a few but I really appreciate the support.

Mike
fxguide.com

http://www.fxguide.com/featured/the-art-of-rendering/

ccclarke
04-25-2012, 10:29 PM
Really great article Mike! I enjoy learning about different apps, and there is a wealth of information contained therein.

One very minor editorial comment: you might want to consider revising the last sentence in the Lightwave section from, "It run on PC or Mac." to "It runs on a PC or Mac."

I agree with the former post regarding Steve Worley's fantastic real-time renderer fPrime and his Sasquatch fur plugin (among others.) They deserve an honorable mention, even in a concise history of Lightwave.

I look forward to your future articles. Keep up the terrific work!

CC Clarke

mikeseymour
04-25-2012, 11:52 PM
Really great article Mike! I enjoy learning about different apps, and there is a wealth of information contained therein.

One very minor editorial comment: you might want to consider revising the last sentence in the Lightwave section from, "It run on PC or Mac." to "It runs on a PC or Mac."

I agree with the former post regarding Steve Worley's fantastic real-time renderer fPrime and his Sasquatch fur plugin (among others.) They deserve an honorable mention, even in a concise history of Lightwave.

I look forward to your future articles. Keep up the terrific work!

CC Clarke


thanks I fixed that mistake. I have not included fPrime and Sasquatch as this is not intended as a summary of LW - but of LW's renderer in relationship to GI - especially at the high end. I agree those would be good to mention if this was meant to discuss all of lightwave- but we will be doing more on LW - so hopefully I can mention them then.

thanks again

Mike

robpowers3d
04-26-2012, 12:05 AM
Mike,
Very nice section on LightWave. Thanks for that! I really like the print work of Christopher Short as well. His cover image looks great. And the ship done by Thomas Leitner is another very nice image as well.

Netvudu
04-26-2012, 05:21 PM
I concur. Better late than never. Now we know the omission was simply an accidental oversight.
And it still is a nice article (it already was)

Cageman
04-26-2012, 08:00 PM
thanks I fixed that mistake. I have not included fPrime and Sasquatch as this is not intended as a summary of LW - but of LW's renderer in relationship to GI - especially at the high end. I agree those would be good to mention if this was meant to discuss all of lightwave- but we will be doing more on LW - so hopefully I can mention them then.

thanks again

Mike

Thanks for the addition of the LW-section in the article. :)

Regarding FPrime; it was the first itterative renderer out there that actually did MC bounce GI in almost realtime (I say almost because it was itterating the frame constantly). I know of an artist who used to use XSI+LW/FPrime until he got hold of Arnold for XSI. :)

There is a lot more to talk about regarding LWs GI and, compared to the Modo-section in the article (which is quite short compared to Arnold), LW offers three modes of GI... Background, Monte Carlo and Final Gather... all of which support both Interpolation and Brute force.

Hopefully, you guys will be able to post more about LWs renderengine in the future. I also think it would be good to talk about license-servers, the IT-departments needed for certain renderengines to function properly on a renderfarm and so forth. This type of things are often overlooked and give a false picture of how things really work.

I have first hand experince about support from a third party Maya developer, and it is not pretty... :/ The third party developers active on the LW-scene today are extremely pro, very much on their toes as soon as there is an issue.. this goes for both commercial and free plugins for LW.

Just stating my experiences so far, having worked in this industry for over 8 years now, using Maya, MBuilder, Modo and LightWave.

short223
07-02-2012, 08:07 AM
Hey Rob! Thanks for the kind words! I did get the pleasure to meet you briefly at SIGGRAPH LA a number of years back (2005 maybe?). I just got a chance to read the updated article and it's great that LW got the coverage it deserves!
Chris


Mike,
Very nice section on LightWave. Thanks for that! I really like the print work of Christopher Short as well. His cover image looks great. And the ship done by Thomas Leitner is another very nice image as well.