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Thread: LightWave Physical Sun / Sky settings and other render engines

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    LightWave Physical Sun / Sky settings and other render engines

    LW 2018 / 2019 have the new physical sun / sky model based on Hosek-Wilkie.

    As I mentioned in another thread I'm not convinced by its quality and easy of use but that's maybe because I'm not familiar with it.

    Based on Prometheus request to provide screenshots of sun / sky settings in other render engines I created this thread.

    For example I was not able to create soft shadows with the LW Sun. Also in 2019.1 it's not possible to modify the horizon blur. Note that other engines also provide additional Sun / Sky models like CIE or Preetham. If it's of interest I can render those too.

    It would be great to see some good LW sun / sky settings and rendered results.


    Pic 1: LW Sun / Sky

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    Pics 2 - 4: RedShift Sun / Sky / Environment

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    Pic 5: Vray Sun / Sky

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    Pic 6 - 7: Cycles4D Light / Environment (no specific Sun / Sky settings)

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    Pics 8 - 9: C4D Physical or ProRender Sun / Sky (crazy amount of features and settings)

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    In this scene I added a couple of parametric objects and default RedShift Sun / Sky - Render time a bit more than a minute. I would probably increase the sun intensity and lighten the shadows a bit in those.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Render 1: Default Redshift Sun / Sky - note the hard shadows

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    Render 2: Redshift Sun / Sky with softer shadows

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Render 3: Redshift Sun / Sky with modifed Turbidity and sun rotation

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    Render 4: Redshift with Environment object

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    Render 5: another example of Redshift Sun / Sky (15 sec render)

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Please don't judge textures, I just used default rock object and material without any bump/normal/displacement/roughness and no post processing.
    Last edited by Marander; 07-17-2019 at 07:05 PM.

  2. #2
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marander View Post
    LW 2018 / 2019 have the new physical sun / sky model based on Hosek-Wilkie.

    As I mentioned in another thread I'm not convinced by its quality and easy of use but that's maybe because I'm not familiar with it.

    Based on Prometheus request to provide screenshots of sun / sky settings in other render engines I created this thread.

    For example I was not able to create soft shadows with the LW Sun. Also in 2019.1 it's not possible to modify the horizon blur. Note that other engines also provide additional Sun / Sky models like CIE or Preetham. If it's of interest I can render those too.

    It would be great to see some good LW sun / sky settings and rendered results.


    Pic 1: LW Sun / Sky

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_LW01.PNG 
Views:	120 
Size:	56.5 KB 
ID:	145464

    Pics 2 - 4: RedShift Sun / Sky / Environment

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_RS02.png 
Views:	50 
Size:	54.0 KB 
ID:	145466 Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_RS03.png 
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ID:	145467 Click image for larger version. 

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    Pic 5: Vray Sun / Sky

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_Vray01.png 
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    Pic 6 - 7: Cycles4D Light / Environment (no specific Sun / Sky settings)

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_Cycles01.PNG 
Views:	25 
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ID:	145470 Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_Cycles02.PNG 
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ID:	145471

    Pics 8 - 9: C4D Physical or ProRender Sun / Sky (crazy amount of features and settings)

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_C4D01.PNG 
Views:	32 
Size:	99.2 KB 
ID:	145472 Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_C4D02.PNG 
Views:	29 
Size:	185.0 KB 
ID:	145473


    In this scene I added a couple of parametric objects and default RedShift Sun / Sky - Render time a bit more than a minute. I would probably increase the sun intensity and lighten the shadows a bit in those.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_RS01.png 
Views:	71 
Size:	773.5 KB 
ID:	145465

    Render 1: Default Redshift Sun / Sky - note the hard shadows

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_RS_Render01.png 
Views:	84 
Size:	2.74 MB 
ID:	145474

    Render 2: Redshift Sun / Sky with softer shadows

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_RS_Render02.png 
Views:	75 
Size:	2.73 MB 
ID:	145475

    Render 3: Redshift Sun / Sky with modifed Turbidity and sun rotation

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_RS_Render03.png 
Views:	80 
Size:	2.48 MB 
ID:	145476

    Render 4: Redshift with Environment object

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_RS_Render04.png 
Views:	78 
Size:	2.04 MB 
ID:	145477

    Render 5: another example of Redshift Sun / Sky (15 sec render)

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SunSky_RS_Render05.png 
Views:	79 
Size:	2.34 MB 
ID:	145478

    Please don't judge textures, I just used default rock object and material without any bump/normal/displacement/roughness and no post processing.
    Ok..
    Though You can really get the same results practicly for the backdrop with Lightwave physical sky, I do not see any particular quality in there that Lightwave physical sky could not do.
    The renderers you refer to may have some more options, ozone water wapor...if you want that you may want to use sunsky and preetham instead.

    Maybe the only thing would be the horizon blur.

    I need to post pictures as well..but itīs bedtime now, and it will probably include clouds.

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    I'm interested in a simple setup that can be used for animation.

    More important than the backdrop (which can be faked with an image) is the light itself, a nice warm early afternoon to evening light with nice shadows.

    For still images of atmosphere / environments I have VUE and Terragen but they render extremely slow.

    Now I don't expect render times like in Redshift but something noise and firefly free that renders within a few minutes per frame.

    It starts with having a default light in an 'empty' LW scene, do I just change that into a sun and use for the sky backdrop shader or do I need Stars in that panel? Why would I even require additional stars? Depending on the choice I can only modify the sun orientation in the world map which is not a good workflow except one requires exact time and position for arch viz (which I do not care about). Some engines automatically create a sun target object which is more useful to me.

    In case of other render engines it's basically one click to have good sun light in the scene but with LW I maybe do something essentially wrong?

    A simple setup like an infinite plane (or large plane in LW), an object and Sun / Sky rig including good render settings is what I'm looking for.

    Thanks!
    Last edited by Marander; 07-17-2019 at 11:54 PM.

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    To me the best option is to use the Physical sky and the environment light, with volumetrics also. I attach a test scene I've made.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    test.zip
    English is not my native language so please be patient.

    Salvador Ureņa
    http://urenasalvador.wixsite.com/portfolio

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    Quote Originally Posted by Asticles View Post
    To me the best option is to use the Physical sky and the environment light, with volumetrics also. I attach a test scene I've made.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	image000_001.jpg 
Views:	125 
Size:	157.6 KB 
ID:	145481

    test.zip
    Thank you Asticles. Your image is exactly what I'm talking of, that's what I get with LW. Awful unrealistic colors, bad light and extremely grainy. In my opinion LW2019.1 makes it even worse.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marander View Post
    Thank you Asticles. Your image is exactly what I'm talking of, that's what I get with LW. Awful unrealistic colors, bad light and extremely grainy. In my opinion LW2019.1 makes it even worse.
    Fairly certain the grain and lighting appearance is due to Asticles' render being very low resolution; the file size is only 156kb @ less than 640x480, compared to your attached renders which are between 2 and 3mb @ 1920x1080.

    It looks to me like it was rendered using the default render settings.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by RPSchmidt View Post
    Fairly certain the grain and lighting appearance is due to Asticles' render being very low resolution; the file size is only 156kb @ less than 640x480, compared to your attached renders which are between 2 and 3mb @ 1920x1080.

    It looks to me like it was rendered using the default render settings.
    I do not see any direct issue with the quality of color and light in the physical sky nor grain, itīs just that it hasnīt got that blur at the horizon as an option, Daz studios spectal background is quite nice in that regards.

    But I think I see other issues with the sunlight, previously we could at a lensflare on DP sunlight and rotate it by checking manual control...that is if we added the sk_sunmotion in the lights motion properties and set the right distant in km, that way the lensflare matched up.

    Now...DP updated his stuff for lightwave, so you could add the sk sun motion modifier in 2019 as well..But, I think Denis skipped th sk light and it now uses Lightwaves new sunlight, and the way it worked before was that you had to check manual in the sk sunlight, that is not an option and all you get is location, so you can not manually dial in the sun as you want and get a sunflare..so that is bad.

    I think I also see an issue with the size of the sunlight, it should yield softer shadows but I donīt think it seems to yield the correct softness when increasing size.

    As for asticles render, the grain is most likely Not resolution, but a result of too low volumetric samples, you may want to raise the Lights volumetric samples from 20-40, especially if you have volumetric clouds as well.
    Could be that the environment light is affecting the volumetrics as well..and you need right samples in such case, you could also turn that off for affecting volumetrics.

    As for lighting, most likely color space thingy, and the environment light as well.

    if not using GI, you loose out on the inderect lightning if that is checked for volumetrics, that can boost light mulitple scattering illlumination inside of cloud volumes.
    As for volumetric global scattering, you may want to set a very high asymmetry..like 0,8-0,95 this makes the volumetric glow around a light source more prominent in falloff so to speak and not spreading out in the sky so much.
    Similar in a volumetric item, settings above 0,5 will help the sunlight glow in the clouds a bit more.

    Got some images to gather, will have to check some..I have with godrays as well from the new sunlight, Not unpar with Terragen or vue exactly...but it may be tweaked to an acceptable level.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marander View Post
    I'm interested in a simple setup that can be used for animation.

    More important than the backdrop (which can be faked with an image) is the light itself, a nice warm early afternoon to evening light with nice shadows.

    For still images of atmosphere / environments I have VUE and Terragen but they render extremely slow.

    Now I don't expect render times like in Redshift but something noise and firefly free that renders within a few minutes per frame.

    It starts with having a default light in an 'empty' LW scene, do I just change that into a sun and use for the sky backdrop shader or do I need Stars in that panel? Why would I even require additional stars? Depending on the choice I can only modify the sun orientation in the world map which is not a good workflow except one requires exact time and position for arch viz (which I do not care about). Some engines automatically create a sun target object which is more useful to me.

    In case of other render engines it's basically one click to have good sun light in the scene but with LW I maybe do something essentially wrong?

    A simple setup like an infinite plane (or large plane in LW), an object and Sun / Sky rig including good render settings is what I'm looking for.

    Thanks!
    The stars " sol" works as a sundisc, so you can add two suns, and depending on order they are stacked..you can have one of them specificly over the other...for that starwars ending scene

    otherwise at certain sun positions ..you may want to turn the disc of,(0 value) or adjust volumetrics so it glows around the disc instead.

    Animated is no issue, you just need to dial in the settings to your likings for a sunset.

    as for infinite plane, I agree ..it should be one by default, otherwise, make a 60 km groundplane or bigger..and it should in most cases serve as an "fake infinite" plane.

    The tonemapping I think they mus add a function for soon, I think it is mentioned in the docs that you may want to adjust luminance in the physical sky to adress some of that, but I do not think itīs good enough.
    a complete disable of the color space presets will yield a more colorful contrasted sky ..but may be a bit too dark as well.

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    what are the rendertimes for lw stuff? i am just wondering if you will end up dialing in settings that get a good result but too long to wait.

    any examples of octane sky?

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    Thanks guys. I'll have a look again into LW and Sun / Sky this weekend. All I'd like to see is a render with LW Sun / Sky, good lighting with a simple object on a plane, noise and firefly free, without using a denoiser, showing the light and render settings screenshots and/or an attached scene. It should at least match quality of the 15 second render time I posted above with an acceptable render time (maximum a couple of minutes per frame, suitable for animation).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marander View Post
    Thanks guys. I'll have a look again into LW and Sun / Sky this weekend. All I'd like to see is a render with LW Sun / Sky, good lighting with a simple object on a plane, noise and firefly free, without using a denoiser, showing the light and render settings screenshots and/or an attached scene. It should at least match quality of the 15 second render time I posted above with an acceptable render time (maximum a couple of minutes per frame, suitable for animation).
    I think the hardest noise to get rid of..that is if using PBR materials with "Glossy reflections" and if you have rougness set to high on that, turning that off I think most of the fireflies can be avoided without denoiser, but otherwise I am not sure.
    I think they need to adress this though.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by gar26lw View Post
    what are the rendertimes for lw stuff? i am just wondering if you will end up dialing in settings that get a good result but too long to wait.

    any examples of octane sky?
    Impossible to say if you lay it out like that, do you mean a simple clean background sky, do you mean with volumetric scattering, do you mean with volumetric clouds, do you mean with a lot of objects with various render impacting objects?
    Donīt have octane.

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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    Impossible to say if you lay it out like that, do you mean a simple clean background sky, do you mean with volumetric scattering, do you mean with volumetric clouds, do you mean with a lot of objects with various render impacting objects?
    Donīt have octane.
    The thing is: For GPU render engines like RedShift (and I guess Octane is similar), the render time doesn't really change much by adding features.

    No matter what you throw at RS - Volumes, Scattering, DOF, Refractions, GI, Bloom, Gleam, Hair, even fly-trough clouds - the render times are about the same (mostly 30 seconds to 2 minutes per frame for FullHD in my setup, seldom more).

    The only noticeable increase in render times is when forcing a high amount of samples, GI bounces or many Irradiance points, which is not required in most cases. Or when using heavy sub poly displacement where the tessellation needs to be calculated (only for the first frame). Or when using a lot of AOVs that might require separate calculation.

    And I've never seen any firefly, no matter how low the samples are, also even though there are denoisers they are not required. I haven't even activated the RTX features yet which can increase the render speed in certain scenes by multiple times.

    An advantage in CPU render engines like LightWave or Vray (and why I still bother) is, they are usable on any system, even on laptops with integrated graphics. And the CPU renderers I use are not node-locked.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marander View Post
    The thing is: For GPU render engines like RedShift (and I guess Octane is similar), the render time doesn't really change much by adding features.

    No matter what you throw at RS - Volumes, Scattering, DOF, Refractions, GI, Bloom, Gleam, Hair, even fly-trough clouds - the render times are about the same (mostly 30 seconds to 2 minutes per frame for FullHD in my setup, seldom more).

    The only noticeable increase in render times is when forcing a high amount of samples, GI bounces or many Irradiance points, which is not required in most cases. Or when using heavy sub poly displacement where the tessellation needs to be calculated (only for the first frame). Or when using a lot of AOVs that might require separate calculation.

    And I've never seen any firefly, no matter how low the samples are, also even though there are denoisers they are not required. I haven't even activated the RTX features yet which can increase the render speed in certain scenes by multiple times.

    An advantage in CPU render engines like LightWave or Vray (and why I still bother) is, they are usable on any system, even on laptops with integrated graphics. And the CPU renderers I use are not node-locked.
    Unfortunately I havenīt done my studies on Redshift or octane...did try octane standalone around 2011, cool then..but have not tried it with Lightwave, I did install a demo for blender, horrible to set up to get going...and the first scene I tried with boolean brushes didnīt yield proper render result, that along with too small preview window..and I kind of lost interest and will have a go at looking at e-cycles next, will have to evaluate alleynestudios test on youtube.

    and Yes...a GPU render natively I am all for it, but now we are more getting in to render speed between CPU and GPU, not focusing on what differs in quality, realism on the backdrop physical sky.
    ARe you using full version of Redshift or a Demo?

    Daz studio and itīs spectral environment is pretty nice though...it takes a bit of time to pass it to the GPU before you can start to tweak, but I like the lighting in there, but spending time with that render alone leaves you in the dust of lacking other effects that Lightwave has, ergo I do not spend any time with it really.

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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    ARe you using full version of Redshift or a Demo?
    Daz studio...
    Yes you're right, getting slightly off topic here.

    All my software are licensed full versions. Except Blender and Krita

    DAZ Studio or let's say iRay (discontinued by NVidia) is a very nice looking render engine but also rather slow.
    Last edited by Marander; 07-18-2019 at 09:13 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marander View Post
    Yes you're right, getting slightly off topic here.

    All my software are licensed full versions.

    DAZ Studio or let's say iRay (discontinued by NVidia) is a very nice looking render engine but also rather slow.
    Didnīt know it was discontinued, and to my experience it was quite fast..not slow, except for the initial pass through when you activate it.

    My desktop system Asus Rog G20CB Gtx 1080

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