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Thread: Sasquatch is SLOWWWWWW!!!!!!!

  1. #1
    Super Member Paul_Boland's Avatar
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    Sasquatch is SLOWWWWWW!!!!!!!

    I remember my days of working in Caligari TrueSpace. When rendering an animation, 10 seconds a frame was my limit. I was willing to go as high as 15 seconds or even 20 on rare occassions, but 10 seconds per frame was my render time limit. And that was 400 x 300 and no antialysis (or whatever it's called).

    Today I render at 640 x 480, a lovely 5x antialysis, and render times... Well, the lower the better for sure, but I'm happy to go 20 seconds per frame as the norm now.

    Role in Shooting Stars 3, my current movie project, and the bear character of Gruffy. After being a textured brown in TrueSpace, in Lightwave he's covered with fur and damn is he cute!! I love him!! But when it comes to rendering... OMG!!! Sasquatch is so slow!!!!!!!

    Picture the scene... An interior throne room, four lights. Three are spotlights with shadow map casting on so as to cast the fur shadows. One is a central point light to light the whole room (this doesn't cast the fun shadows). I got the render underway, 640 x 480, a 1800 frame animation. The scene started with Gruffy not in camera view. Frame render time... 42 seconds per frame!!!!!!!!! OUCH!!!!!!!

    As the camera moved around and Gruffy came into view... 2 minutes per frame!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! AAAGGGHHH!!!!!!!!!!! Thankfully the camera is just doing a pass by in this opening scene. Once Gruffy had been passed by, I cancelled the render (I save out each frame as a bitmap image), deleted Gruffy from the scene, got the render under way again from where I had stopped it. Render time... 12 seconds per frame!!

    Initially Lightwave was reporting a total render time of 48 hours!!!!!!! Thanks to my jumping in and deleting Gruffy once he had been passed by, I got that down to 16 hours. The finished render, all 72 seconds of it, is great, I love it, but the render times... OUCH!!!!!!!! OUCH!!!!!!!!!!!! OUCH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I've learned a lesson here and for any future scenes in which Gruffy will be in the throne room, I'll keep his on screen time to a minimum (outside the throne room he's fine, don't need four lights!!), but damn, is Sasquatch slow!! Don't suppose there is any way to speed it up?
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  2. #2
    Sasquatch actually renders quite fast for what it does. Two minutes a frame isn't really that bad is it? Just to put it in perspecitve, Pixar says on their website that some single frames have taken as long as 90 HOURS to render.

  3. #3
    Adapting Artist jasonwestmas's Avatar
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    Huh? You should try FiberFX, that is awfully slow in comparison to sas. 3 minutes per frame is super duper fast considering the shading standards these days.
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  4. #4
    Super Member dwburman's Avatar
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    Timothy Albee developed a method of speeding up final renders a bit. As I understand it, you bake the lighting/shading as a texture map (with Sasquatch disabled) which you apply back on the character and use to color the fur. That way Sasquatch doesn't have to calculate shading.

    http://worley.com/Tutorials/AlbeeShading/index.html
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  5. #5
    Running at 29.97 fps Titus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hrgiger View Post
    Sasquatch actually renders quite fast for what it does. Two minutes a frame isn't really that bad is it? Just to put it in perspecitve, Pixar says on their website that some single frames have taken as long as 90 HOURS to render.
    This must me a maximum. They are very well known for optimizing scenes. I remember one year at SIGGRAPH they had a scene from Finding Nemo rendering there. It was like 5 minutes per frame.

    Personally, I find rendering a constant over time. 15 minutes was a maximum 10 years ago, and the same time now. This way I can render a 20 second ad in a specific amount of time. The difference now is that video has photorreal motion blur, radiosity and HD resolution.

  6. #6
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    I think I remember reading the quote, I think it was from Mr. Gordon, saying that for TS3 some frames took up to 90 hours but the average was 7 hours per frame, iirc.

  7. #7
    Member toeknee's Avatar
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    I have to agree with the rest of the guys two minutes per frame with fur big deal. But I did have a little thought and that is are you using Sas or Sas lite? if you are using Sas lite then you might want to get the full program because one of the big benefits was suppose to be faster render times. Another way might be to us DPInstance. I have had some amazing render times with that. You could also build some very powerful node networks to control the fur in different ways. http://dpont.pagesperso-orange.fr/pl..._Instance.html I think Denis rocks I made a scene last night that had 500 butterflys zipping around and that was rendering 80 seconds. I am attaching an image that I rendered in 51 seconds of 31 characters instanced. The original character is 107 thousand polys skined and rigged. I also rendered this on a three year old laptop with 15 browser windows open. Click image for larger version. 

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  8. #8
    Profesor Pixel Poo Mr Rid's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwburman View Post
    Timothy Albee developed a method of speeding up final renders a bit...

    http://worley.com/Tutorials/AlbeeShading/index.html
    2 minutes is nothing. But fur baking allows you to use any lights, GI, and full shadows with no render hit. I dont recall all the outdated bits of that ancient tut but you want to use LWs baking camera instead.
    Last edited by Mr Rid; 02-14-2011 at 03:19 AM.
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  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Titus View Post
    This must me a maximum. They are very well known for optimizing scenes. I remember one year at SIGGRAPH they had a scene from Finding Nemo rendering there. It was like 5 minutes per frame.
    Yes, I'm sure it is. And also, that tidbit on their website is several years old so I'm sure that 90 hour frames probably don't happen anymore. Either way, I'm sure they would be thrilled to only have a two minute frame.

  10. #10
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    You didn't say what machine do you have..

    Don't suppose there is any way to speed it up?
    Buy more modern machines, and make renderfarm. f.e. Core i7 or dual-Xeon equivalents of Core i7.

  11. #11
    Registered User Skywatcher_NT's Avatar
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    Errr....sorry guys, but the stuff that you call renders I would rather call
    OGL representations. Sorry again. But that explains the low rendertimes.

    For a "decent" render it's way higher than 50 secs.

  12. #12
    Not so newbie member lardbros's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Skywatcher_NT View Post
    Errr....sorry guys, but the stuff that you call renders I would rather call
    OGL representations. Sorry again. But that explains the low rendertimes.

    For a "decent" render it's way higher than 50 secs.
    Massive sweeping statement if I'm honest, and you can't say that other people's work looks like an OpenGL preview... that's just not cricket (as we say in the UK).

    You can definitely get nice renders out of Mental Ray with only 50 seconds, on a 24core beast... no problem at all. I'm just doing some product animation shots, with FG and at HD and it's rendering with nice glossy reflections in around 29 seconds on a 12 core desktop machine. This is a product shot, on a plain white BG though, but boy does it look pretty

    But aaaaanyway, back on topic... fur/grass will take a while, but sasquatch, as everyone else has said, is actually very fast. A short film I did back in 2004-ish had sasquatch grass all over it, and was taking 4 minutes a frame maximum, on an AMD 1600+ single core and poor machine!
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  13. #13
    Caged but Happy lwaddict's Avatar
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    What you need is the NanoSecRender plugin.

    No, it doesn't speed up the renders...

    But it will change the times enough by moving a decimal point to the right and make you feel like you're working faster.
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  14. #14
    Member toeknee's Avatar
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    Hey, Skywatcher
    Actually my openGL preview looks better. I was not trying to show a beautiful render. I was just trying to show that if Paul used DPInstance he might be able to have actual geometry to work with this could give him quickly renders. My point was to show the amount of polygons you could work with dealing with instances. In this case I render 3317000 polygons on rigged and skinned character. But you are correct that I should not be so lazy and post low quality renders. I also think that this image looks like poo. But if you us instances of actual fur you could us effects on them like gravity and it might give you better control and a faster render.
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  15. #15
    Registered User MaDDoX's Avatar
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    I'm getting EIGHT min renders out of Shave & Haircut for Maya/MR with Final Gather enabled. And it's far from a complex scene, simple cartoon character and just 3-point lighting plus a standard white dome for GI bouncing. 1024x768 rez, two hair systems (one for short hair, one for long hair) applied to the character and that's it.

    And you say 40s is taking long? Wow..

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