View Full Version : Parallel Computing and Rendering

02-01-2006, 01:37 PM
Anyone know what I am talking about? It relates to Multithread technology in the fact that multiple commands are processed simultaneously. However on a parallel platform the processes are processed by multiple computers all linked up. (In a manner of speaking) It's a modern day version of a super computer. Similar to clustering but different as I understand it.

I don't know much about it, but there is lots on the net about it. AppleSeed is software that lets you link up Mac's to do parallel computing. Anyone know of a similar app for PC's. If so how could we harness this type of technology with Lightwave.

I read an article about Stack!Studios and software they developed to use a 160CPU cluster when pressing F9 in lightwave. Wow thats cool.... Could you imagine sending commands to 160 processors via F9 when you render and in seconds/min. you get your results?

Thanks for any thoughts, ideas or corrections.

02-01-2006, 03:59 PM
There have been rendering systems that use the technique of "tiled rendering" or whatever term you want to use, for a while now... I believe Softimage and Maya either have that functionality built in or plugins that do that, I even thought someone was working on a system like this for LW.

There is a point of deminishing returns tho, when the time it takes to initiate a render on a remote process would be longer, as in 160 processors each taking 60 seconds to get the required files to render a very small amount of the final image, say 10 seconds of render time. Essentially your communication time vs render time is a factor here.

Anyway there are systems that do that, don't know if there is one for LW..


02-02-2006, 10:41 AM
I have had good results from using Amleto (www.nodalideas.com) for my rendering of large illustration across a small render farm. By designating a number of segments in the server window, the software breaks up the image into strips and sends the requests out to the available nodes. As the finished segments come back into the server, they are then composited together into a completed image. I use this for overly large illustrations that either, won't render at all, or take forever on my main workstation. It obviously handles animations just fine, sending out the frames to the nodes, but your question about using the processing power available can be partially addressed using this solution.
Take a look, it has a demo period, then shifts to 3node limit withsome functionality reduction, but licensing is very cost effective and they responded to my emails when I had some setup challenges.