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frank1024
08-15-2006, 09:54 PM
Here is the link to show the actual render done in Discovery Mode with LW9

http://www.clubphotogallery.com/images/LW_Render.html

The same exact scene done with the same setings in LW8 took more than one second less. As I said in my earlier message the renders are all done on PowerPC Quad Core Macs configured the same.

I purchased LW9 because the information given on the Newtek website leading up to LW9's release said that LW9 was faster. I spent nearly $10,000 on my two Quad Core Macs because they are faster than what I used before. Render times on my Dual Core Power PC Macs was more than twice as long. I purchased the upgrade to LW9 because I thought it was faster.

Now I'm hearing that LW9 is dramaticly slower than LW8. 30%???? The difference in render time from LW8 to LW9 is more than one second for the example given. This really ads up when I have to render 18,000 frames.

Hi Frank,

The renderer in 9 does a bit more pre-calculation per render than it did in 8. That means that for shorter renders, this becomes more of the overall chunk. On longer renders, it flattens out quickly, and generally speaking, makes complex renders take less time than they used to. If each frame of your render takes under 10 seconds, you're definitely on the 'less complex' side of the render.

But I'm not saying we're content with this, and this is an issue we're looking at right now. If you wouldn't mind, I would greatly appreciate it if you would send me a scene from anything you're working on, so I can make sure any performance tweaks we make are working across the board.

( [email protected]com )

Thanks,
-Chilton Webb

Last edited by Chilton : Today at 11:03 PM.


Frank,

Try changing to the perspective camera (unless you have any single or 2 point polys) and see what the time is.

-mark

avkills
08-15-2006, 10:15 PM
Yes in your screen capture showing LW9, it is rendering using the Classic Camera. Try switching it to the Perspective Camera (Camera -> Properties) just for yucks and giggles. Although you may not be able to in Discovery Mode.

I have personally found the perspective camera to be up to 2-3 times faster than the classic camera with the same scene.

-mark

frank1024
08-15-2006, 10:29 PM
This forum is so helpfull. One of the reasons I purchased LW was because of this forum. I'll give it a try, but because of the fact I can only work in Discovery Mode it might not work.

I'm getting an LW9 upgrade to my LW8 next week that works with the old dongle so if I can't try your solution with the LW9 version I have now, I'll have to wait for next week. I'll let you know.

I've sent the files to Chilton to try out so we'll see what he says.

Frank

frank1024
08-15-2006, 11:04 PM
Hi Mark

I did as you said and the render with Perspective Camera took over 35 seconds. But I also rendered the scene with Classic Camera with antialiasins set to PLD 2_Pass. It rendered at about the same speed 7.5seconds as LW8 in Classic Camera/Antialising: Classic Low.

I rendered the scene again in LW8> Classic Camera> Antialising: PLD 2-Pass and the render was 5.4 seconds for the scene.

Its really a big dissapointment that LW9 is so much slower after Newtek said it was faster. With what I'm doing every second of each render really ads up. I'm rendering 18,000 frames. So you can see what I mean.

Frank

jameswillmott
08-16-2006, 12:24 AM
Most scenes do render faster. The more polygons you throw at it the greater the return on speed over 8.5.

Simple scenes may render slower, but to say 9 is slower than 8 in general isn't true or fair.

frank1024
08-16-2006, 01:22 AM
Maybe LW9 is faster with scenes more complex than what I have, but I don't care about that. All I know is that LW9 is slower for what I'm trying to do than LW8 and because of that I won't use LW9 for the task at hand.

BazC
08-16-2006, 01:54 AM
Two more points to bear in mind, first on small/simple scenes the perspective camera is usually slower than the classic camera.

Second LW9 works best with the number of threads set to the number of rocessors you have so if you're rendering with a quad set it to four.

toby
08-16-2006, 03:06 AM
Another way to do this which should really blaze through renders is to use multiple copies of LW, or Screamernet, to render 4 scenes at once, all set to one thread.

The reason this may be faster ( you never know what's fastest til you try it ) is that multi-threading takes a little bit of time, or 'overhead' to run. All the data in the scene needs to be split into different threads, and then put back together. The different threads also need to be coordinated. That's three things that don't need to be done at all with single-threaded renders. If your scene only takes a few seconds anyway, it may take just as long to do these extra tasks as it does to render the polygons. It's easiest to think of multi-threading in terms of driving to the store when it's just across the street. It would be faster to walk such a short distance.

So if you have 4 scenes rendering 1 thread, you have none of this overhead.

I just noticed that you've set the threads to 4 - I've seen that setting go slower than 2 or 8 threads. Try 1, 2 and 8 threads to see what's the fastest.

BazC
08-16-2006, 03:21 AM
I just noticed that you've set the threads to 4 - I've seen that setting go slower than 2 or 8 threads. Try 1, 2 and 8 threads to see what's the fastest.

True in earlier versions but not in 9 apparently, NT have stated categorically that 9 is fastest with threads set to the number of processors you are using, user tests seem to confirm this.

frank1024
08-16-2006, 11:04 AM
4 Threads are faster than all the other renders.

toby
08-16-2006, 01:32 PM
True in earlier versions but not in 9 apparently, NT have stated categorically that 9 is fastest with threads set to the number of processors you are using, user tests seem to confirm this.
I still get better times with 8 threads on my dual, unless it'a quick render.

Try Jeremy Hardin's BG Render
http://jeremy.lwidof.net/lscript/
It's the easiest way to use Screamernet for a local render, just push a button! Maybe it will let you do 4 at a time?

BazC
08-17-2006, 12:10 AM
I still get better times with 8 threads on my dual, unless it'a quick render.

Interesting. Thanks for the info!

Lightwolf
08-17-2006, 01:53 AM
I still get better times with 8 threads on my dual, unless it'a quick render.
Is that using the perspective Camera? It always give me best results when set to the number of (virtual) cores.

Cheers,
Mike

theartguy
08-17-2006, 05:30 AM
In this series of benchmark tests, Creative Mac said this of LW 9;

"Performance of LightWave in Rosetta is so cripplingly weak that it really can't be considered a viable platform until NewTek comes out with a Universal Binary version of the software."


http://www.creativemac.com/articles/viewarticle.jsp?id=39238

toby
08-18-2006, 01:05 PM
Is that using the perspective Camera? It always give me best results when set to the number of (virtual) cores.

Cheers,
Mike
It's not as often, nor by as much anymore, but I always test what # of threads is fastest, and sometimes it's 8 with both cameras. I'll do some tests that I can post when I get home.

Chilton
08-18-2006, 07:18 PM
Hi,


In this series of benchmark tests, Creative Mac said this of LW 9;

"Performance of LightWave in Rosetta is so cripplingly weak that it really can't be considered a viable platform until NewTek comes out with a Universal Binary version of the software."

http://www.creativemac.com/articles/viewarticle.jsp?id=39238

Ah Creative Mac, how I've missed their wisdom. Like their most famous article, 'The Mac Sucks' ...
http://www.digitalvideoediting.com/Htm/Articles/chazzletter6.htm

Sorry, sorry, that was low.

To be honest, Creative Mac moved that article off their site for some unknown reason. And a few weeks after that article went live, they hired Dave Nagel, the author of the above tidbit about LightWave. You might remember him as the guy who mocked the Mac users who responded to the earlier article.

http://www.creativemac.com/HTM/Features/talkinsmack/dave1.htm

Sorry, sorry, another cheap shot.

The truth is, we know what Dave said already. LightWave runs much slower in emulation. All apps do. Ours is particularly CPU intensive, which means it's more hampered by emulation than apps that are more dependent on other system resources. The good news is that as your CPU power increases, our render speed increases at the same rate, especially in the Universal Binary version.

Maybe we'd be spending more time trying to figure out how to make it run faster in emulation, if we weren't wasting all our time building this Universal Binary ;-)

I'm frankly quite happy with the performance of LW under Rosetta. It sure beats my PowerBook, and is on par with my Dual 2.0 G5 for most renders, though the above article swears otherwise.

The UB version is very close. But we're not going to release it before it's ready, no matter what kind of bad press we're getting in the meantime.

The article was interesting to me though for another reason--benchmarks. Articles like this give me a solid, tangible way to test our performance vs. earlier versions of our app.

-Chilton

Scazzino
08-18-2006, 07:43 PM
True in earlier versions but not in 9 apparently, NT have stated categorically that 9 is fastest with threads set to the number of processors you are using, user tests seem to confirm this.

It depends on which camera you're using and what your rendering too.

For instance the Classic Camera only allocates the set number of threads to hypervoxels. So if you set it to 2, each half of the hypervoxels get one thread. If one finishes before the other, then one CPU (or core) will sit idle until the slower thread finishes. On my DP G5 the LW9 classic camera renders my current hypervoxel scene fastest when set to 8 threads.

The Perspective Camera however dynamically subdivides the Hypervoxel threads so if one finishes it will split the slower one in two and continue using both CPUs (cores).

byte_fx
08-19-2006, 07:40 PM
Chilton - just a bit curious.

On a Mac Pro does LW 8.5 under emulation render as fast or faster on those little flea flicker scenes as Lw 9.0?

Might be worth keeping both installed.

byte_fx

Chilton
08-19-2006, 07:46 PM
Hi Byte_fx,

Good question. And for some reason I thought to load up all of the v8 content on Friday as I was leaving the office, but left the actual app install there. Not sure what I was thinking. At any rate, I'll let you know an official answer this week.

I *do* know that v8 renders small scenes faster than v9, and that v9 renders more complex ones faster than v8. I plan on doing a bit of more in-depth research on specifics there very soon.

I also know the UB version blows them both away on Intel hardware ;-)

-Chilton

toby
08-19-2006, 09:14 PM
You're such a tease.

Can you tell us if the UB version is faster on Intel than on IBM?

byte_fx
08-19-2006, 09:46 PM
Thanks Chilton.

Just thought it might be an option until the UB version comes out.

byte_fx

Chilton
08-20-2006, 12:27 AM
Hi Toby,



Can you tell us if the UB version is faster on Intel than on IBM?

Well yeah, it's undoubtedly faster than the PPC, but the iMac I tested it on is much newer than the dual G5 I tested on. I also suspect the G5 at my office has memory problems. It's not a fair test, in my opinion.

-Chilton

TomT
08-20-2006, 12:55 AM
Sorry, sorry, that was low.

Sorry, sorry, another cheap shot.

-Chilton

I think it would be more productive on NT's part to understand why they're getting such bad reviews among many in the Mac Community . . .

-T

Kuzey
08-20-2006, 04:50 AM
Well...is official, Maya and Lightwave are equal 8/

That's the only thing I got out of it :thumbsup:

Kuzey

Chilton
08-20-2006, 07:24 AM
Hi TomT,


I think it would be more productive on NT's part to understand why they're getting such bad reviews among many in the Mac Community . . .

-T

That's an easy one! More recent offerings from NT have not placed a priority on the Mac platform. The app looks like a bad port, had stability problems, and didn't take advantage of the numerous platform hooks that make working on a Mac so enjoyable. That's changed recently, but our users won't see tangible proof of this until our next update (the one after this dongle patch).

That version, if it's not a Universal Binary, will at the very least be more of a Mac-like app. The UB version will be out soon, but I'm not about to move it to the market quickly, just to appease the press. I know this doesn't fit in with the 'release early, patch often' mentality that is sweeping the Mac software community as of late, but I want a stable, solid, base application for our first UB offering.

As a current Mac user, and former editor for one very large Mac site, I have a problem with writers (and sites) that badmouth the Mac platform with the hope of driving readership. I've always felt this way, and have been vocal about this in the past (just not here).

Please don't confuse my contempt for Creative Mac's past antics for company policy. :thumbsup:

-Chilton

avkills
08-20-2006, 10:23 AM
Well the one good thing about Lightwave is that it looks the same no matter what platform you run it on, which is actually a plus for the artist. But that does not mean that under the hood, LW Mac can't use some of the new Apple tech do give a considerable speed boost in rendering.

-mark

toby
08-20-2006, 12:32 PM
I think it would be more productive on NT's part to understand why they're getting such bad reviews among many in the Mac Community . . .

-T
Ya know why I think it gets bad reviews in the Mac community? Because it's as stable as Windows software. I've worked on both for years now and it's always seemed that way. I never expected them to make the effort to make one platform better than the other, but now it sounds like that's what we're going to get :eek:

TomT
08-20-2006, 02:05 PM
Hi TomT,



That's an easy one! More recent offerings from NT have not placed a priority on the Mac platform. The app looks like a bad port, had stability problems, and didn't take advantage of the numerous platform hooks that make working on a Mac so enjoyable. That's changed recently, but our users won't see tangible proof of this until our next update (the one after this dongle patch).

That version, if it's not a Universal Binary, will at the very least be more of a Mac-like app. The UB version will be out soon, but I'm not about to move it to the market quickly, just to appease the press. I know this doesn't fit in with the 'release early, patch often' mentality that is sweeping the Mac software community as of late, but I want a stable, solid, base application for our first UB offering.

As a current Mac user, and former editor for one very large Mac site, I have a problem with writers (and sites) that badmouth the Mac platform with the hope of driving readership. I've always felt this way, and have been vocal about this in the past (just not here).

Please don't confuse my contempt for Creative Mac's past antics for company policy. :thumbsup:

-Chilton

A refreshinglingly candid response. Too bad NT spent too much time the last couple of years denying exactly what you're saying in the first paragraph, and making promises they didn't keep. For me (a LW user since it was first ported to the Mac) it will take a lot more tangible evidence of this change of heart before I'm ready to believe NT is going to take care of my professional needs.

Add to that a "blame Apple" approach to every software problem from NT and I think you have a pretty steep hill to climb. I was actually suprised that the current dongle fiasco wasn't blamed on Apple in some way . . .

I don't paticularly care for Creative Mac's editorial style either, but I don't see NT as an institution that should be claiming any paticular high ground, either.

-T

:lightwave

Chilton
08-20-2006, 02:38 PM
For me (a LW user since it was first ported to the Mac) it will take a lot more tangible evidence of this change of heart before I'm ready to believe NT is going to take care of my professional needs.

Fair enough. I expect nothing less from a fellow Mac user.


Add to that a "blame Apple" approach to every software problem from NT and I think you have a pretty steep hill to climb. I was actually suprised that the current dongle fiasco wasn't blamed on Apple in some way . . .

Apple did its fair share of screwing with its developers over the years, and I understand how the NT guys felt. But the dongle fiasco, and how it's being handled, is an example of how things have changed.

There are people we could blame for the problem, but we aren't. Instead, once we'd confirmed exactly what was happening, the development team got on it, and fixed it, within a few days. I didn't have much to do with that, actually. There are other Mac developers here, too ;-)

Right now we're seeing a delay because we hadn't planned on shipping a new version so soon. So we're having to build installer disks again, etc., and that takes time.



I don't paticularly care for Creative Mac's editorial style either, but I don't see NT as an institution that should be claiming any paticular high ground, either.


There are no high horses here. Oddly shaped people, perhaps. But we know we have work to do.

-Chilton