Getting more realistic renders

zug22zug22 Posts: 0

I want to improve my renders above the basic 3Delight - mainly to get "realistic" renders.
I am using DAZ Studio 4 Pro on a Mac (but I might upgrade to 4.5 soon if it is worth it).

As far as I can tell there are 2 options:

1. The "Reality" plugin available here that then uses LuxRender.
Anyone recommend this method? I looked at a vid showing some of the settings but I didn't see anything about realistic lighting or HDR.

2. An HDRI plugin for DAZ Studio called "UberEnvironment" also available here. Or is it a set of plugins?
I am not sure about any of this: for instance, the "Uber" things seems to be a series of shaders for different things: Environment, skin etc. but I can't figure out if they work in DS4 . Similarly,

I went to Download SkyMapGen but then saw that it said "DS 2 and 3" so I assume that it won't work with DS4. But hang on, it only generates an HDRI Skymap, which DS then needs to read, right? Where does it do that? Is that what the Uber Environment plugin does?
I am confused. How can I improve my render quality, preferably without complicating the whole process too much or re- materialing everything in my DAZ Studio files?
I have searched the forums but search does not seem to work well for me.
Thanks for your suggestions folks.

«1

Comments

  • zug22zug22 Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Okay, an update: I got the UberEnvironment plugin and a set of Luminance HDRI's and tried a render.
    I searched the forums and found thread where someone explored some settings for UE in DAZ 3 I think but I have no settings like what he has adjusted: what I DO get is an item in the scene mamngeer that has some settings, but there is nothing in the Render Settings tab or any new tab. I will assume that is normal. So here is my test pic:
    http://i694.photobucket.com/albums/vv309/profnull/Sylvie30603Norm.png
    and here it is rendered with Uber Env:
    http://i694.photobucket.com/albums/vv309/profnull/Sylvie30603Norm.png
    It has a sort of marbled texture all over it and I'm stumped as to why.
    I did try the product page but it appears he creator's wiki is gone and i have not found any helpful info here yet.
    Anyone ?

  • PendraiaPendraia Posts: 2,522
    edited September 2012

    zug22 said:
    Okay, an update: I got the UberEnvironment plugin and a set of Luminance HDRI's and tried a render.
    I searched the forums and found thread where someone explored some settings for UE in DAZ 3 I think but I have no settings like what he has adjusted: what I DO get is an item in the scene mamngeer that has some settings, but there is nothing in the Render Settings tab or any new tab. I will assume that is normal. So here is my test pic:
    http://i694.photobucket.com/albums/vv309/profnull/Sylvie30603Norm.png
    and here it is rendered with Uber Env:
    http://i694.photobucket.com/albums/vv309/profnull/Sylvie30603Norm.png
    It has a sort of marbled texture all over it and I'm stumped as to why.
    I did try the product page but it appears he creator's wiki is gone and i have not found any helpful info here yet.
    Anyone ?
    There is a thread somewhere by Adam that helps with Uberenvironment. The marbling is caused by one of the settings iirc.

    I'll try and find the thread for you...


    found it, hope it helps...
    http://www.daz3d.com/forums/discussion/7679/
    and this

    http://www.daz3d.com/forums/discussion/5320/

    Post edited by Pendraia on
  • prixatprixat Posts: 611
    edited December 1969

    Its a bit worrying that you say you 'got a plugin'.
    Uberenvironment is built into DS4 (and 4.5).

  • GreyMouser69GreyMouser69 Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Actually uberenvironment and ubersurface have been a part of D|S since 3 came out. If you want a recommendation on an excellent set of lights for a reasonable price take a look at Lantino's Lights all of which include uberenvironment as a part of them. They are great on their own or as a jumping off place to start tweaking/adjusting for your own needs.

    The biggest flaw in uberenvironment is in the default settings which even at 4x high setting doesn't look great without adjustment. Select the uberenvironment light and look for a setting called "occlusion samples" and set this to at least 128. This will clear up the mottling effect you see with the default settings.

  • FirstBastionFirstBastion Posts: 2,385
    edited September 2012

    UberEnvironment is included in DAZ Studio3 and 4 so no purchase necessary, though there are some great light sets out there to buy. Lantios Lights are good.

    But if you are going for realism , Reality/LUXRender can definitely deliver realistic results. And if you know real world photography principles, you can transfer those in 3D using Reality.

    Same model, same hair, different render options. The Reality render uses less lights than the others.

    comparisonFB-reality.jpg
    800 x 800 - 340K
    Post edited by FirstBastion on
  • StratDragonStratDragon Posts: 1,751
    edited December 1969

    Daz 4.5 can only use Reality 2.2, and I highly recommend it if your going for realism and you want to keep your setup simple. PretA3D is a mac developer so I don't foresee Mac versions getting sidelined by anything Windows can do. Just know that 3Delight and LuxRender approach rendering your scene very differently.

  • mjc1016mjc1016 Posts: 7,260
    edited September 2012

    One of the things needed is a very good texture set...besides the other things listed.

    Here's a render (post to lighten it...I didn't 'test' the lights before rendering and didn't want to rerender it), of Pheonix1966's Thomas on M4 in DS4.5 with the HSS shader and UE (softbox, 4x quality level)...no 'tweaking' or anything...load, pose and render. Shading rate is set to 0.20 in the Render Settings.

    thomas.jpg
    800 x 1000 - 432K
    Post edited by mjc1016 on
  • mjc1016mjc1016 Posts: 7,260
    edited September 2012

    And here's one in LuxRender (M4 DS3A LuxrenderDS exporter)

    thomas.jpg
    600 x 750 - 64K
    Post edited by mjc1016 on
  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    Regardless of the route you choose, keep in mind that each are only tools and you will need to learn the ins and out of what you choose. There is no easy route.

    With that in mind, first I will state that I have two preferences for rendering. First one is pwSurface2 for use on all my surfaces. Combined with standard lighting in DS one can achive a really good apearence. Not hyper realism but still good.

    The second preference is LuxRender via Reality (Reality is the plugin or bridge, not the render engine). Through it you can achive very realistic renders. I have an image rendering atm in Lux that I will try to show here once its done. In my own opinion, it is the best I have done so far to date using Reality and Lux. The way LR works is that light is treated that same as in real life. In order to fake lighting in Poser or DS you need a lot more lights and you need to know what your doing with them all the more. In Lux, not so much but there is still a leaning curve there. Whatever you know about lighting in Poser or DS you can throw out the window when you render in Lux. Because of how light is treated in Lux. one thing to keep in mind when rendering in Lux is that painted on features or details will not work as well as they do in Poser or DS.

    If you want to take a look at my own work using both pwSurface2 and LuxRender (Reality plugin), check out my DeviantART link in my sig below.

  • GeddGedd Posts: 2,444
    edited December 1969

    Why pwSurface2 over Ubersurface2 btw?

  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    Gedd said:
    Why pwSurface2 over Ubersurface2 btw?


    With pwSurface2 you can control AO at the surface level. I find this to be a far greater way to control AO then leaving it to the lights to do. With pwS2 I can also adjust overall quality of the shader per surface allowing me to make sure hair is less of a resource hog on the final render even with higher render settings in the program. With pwS2 on the surfaces, I dont have to depend on any special lights to accomplish the same effect which means I can go with standard DS lights and render a lot faster (based on my own personal testing)

  • GeddGedd Posts: 2,444
    edited December 1969

    Ty Mattymanx,

    That was what I was 'almost' remembering... The per surface AO control and quality per surface. As you say, I had come to the conclusion researching them that pwSurface seemed more flexible but I wasn't at the point I could test them effectively at that time. I wonder if there are occasions where US2 is better then pwSurface? Does the layered surface make a difference for instance?

    I like the idea of Reality and Oxygen renderers but am wondering if there aren't times where the control of using 3DLight might not be useful.

  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    Gedd said:
    Ty Mattymanx,

    That was what I was 'almost' remembering... The per surface AO control and quality per surface. As you say, I had come to the conclusion researching them that pwSurface seemed more flexible but I wasn't at the point I could test them effectively at that time. I wonder if there are occasions where US2 is better then pwSurface? Does the layered surface make a difference for instance?

    I like the idea of Reality and Oxygen renderers but am wondering if there aren't times where the control of using 3DLight might not be useful.


    Both options for rendering have their place. Rendering in DS is faster so if you need to render sooner then later and hyper realism is not a key issue, then DS it is. If time is not an issue and hyper realism is called for, Lux is the better option. But it can also depend on ones own desires or tastes. Looking at my own work in DS with pwS2, I would say it has a slight comic book feel to it whereas none of my Lux images do. Lux is more demanding of your system. My current scene is using over 3GBs RAM for a single A3 character, short hair and a bikini top. But there is subdivision on all surfaces of the model and hair (minus the mouth and teeth) so it looks more smoothed out and real. The biggest scene I have ever rendered in DS had 22 people + clothing, 5 cars and 2 stonemason sets in it and render in about 30 hours. But it only took about 5GB of ram at the most. With my current scene in Lux, by the time it reaches 3000 samples, it will be over 60 hours of rendering. One of the last scnes I did in Lux reached 3000 samples in 6 hours but it was an outdoor scene with the sun overhead and no reflective surfaces. This newest one is indoors with one mesh light and glossy surfaces. Big difference but it is so worth it for the quality. Forgot to add, one advantage Lux does have over DS for rendeing is that you can see what your seen is like in a matter of minutes or sooner so you're not wasting time sitting there waiting for a test render to finish in order to see all the details.


    Since i dont use Ubersurface2, I could not tell a thing about the layered surfaces. Didn't even know it was in there.

  • GeddGedd Posts: 2,444
    edited December 1969

    Thanks Matty :)

  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    You're welcome! :D

  • MarkR151MarkR151 Posts: 78
    edited December 1969

    Mattymanx said:
    Gedd said:
    Ty Mattymanx,

    That was what I was 'almost' remembering... The per surface AO control and quality per surface. As you say, I had come to the conclusion researching them that pwSurface seemed more flexible but I wasn't at the point I could test them effectively at that time. I wonder if there are occasions where US2 is better then pwSurface? Does the layered surface make a difference for instance?

    I like the idea of Reality and Oxygen renderers but am wondering if there aren't times where the control of using 3DLight might not be useful.


    Both options for rendering have their place. Rendering in DS is faster so if you need to render sooner then later and hyper realism is not a key issue, then DS it is. If time is not an issue and hyper realism is called for, Lux is the better option. But it can also depend on ones own desires or tastes. Looking at my own work in DS with pwS2, I would say it has a slight comic book feel to it whereas none of my Lux images do. Lux is more demanding of your system. My current scene is using over 3GBs RAM for a single A3 character, short hair and a bikini top. But there is subdivision on all surfaces of the model and hair (minus the mouth and teeth) so it looks more smoothed out and real. The biggest scene I have ever rendered in DS had 22 people + clothing, 5 cars and 2 stonemason sets in it and render in about 30 hours. But it only took about 5GB of ram at the most. With my current scene in Lux, by the time it reaches 3000 samples, it will be over 60 hours of rendering. One of the last scnes I did in Lux reached 3000 samples in 6 hours but it was an outdoor scene with the sun overhead and no reflective surfaces. This newest one is indoors with one mesh light and glossy surfaces. Big difference but it is so worth it for the quality. Forgot to add, one advantage Lux does have over DS for rendeing is that you can see what your seen is like in a matter of minutes or sooner so you're not wasting time sitting there waiting for a test render to finish in order to see all the details.


    Since i dont use Ubersurface2, I could not tell a thing about the layered surfaces. Didn't even know it was in there.

    To Mattymanx & anyone else using Reality 2.2. with DS4+,

    You said that a render could take as long as 60 hours with a whole lot of elements(characters, textures, environments & props) so I’m curious as a relative beginner what sizes you’re rendering at. What is the largest image size you’ve rendered with Reality/Lux & how many hours did it take? And how many lights did you use?

    Is Reality compatible with Windows(7/64)?

  • mjc1016mjc1016 Posts: 7,260
    edited September 2012

    The thing with Luxrender/Reality is that there is no point that it will 'finish'...you decide when that it is. Basically that means you can let it render for a year. I have found the fewer 'lights' the better...IBL and mesh lights work very well in Luxrender (in fact you can, with a little work, create mesh (geometry/objects) lights using 'real life' light data/profiles).

    The image I posted earlier in the thread (the one of Thomas...) is 800 x 1000 and I rendered it in about 40 mins on SPPM (a slightly tweaked SPPM setting), with the only light being IBL. Since I don't use Reality (I'm saving up for it, since it doesn't look like LuxrenderDS will be updated to DS4.x anytime in the near future...), I'm not sure how to get to SPPM rendering in it...but it should be an option and it is generally faster, than any of the other options than hybrid (GPU...which still has some problems on Luxrender's end).

    And yes, Reality should be Win7 compatible...you just need to remember to get the 64 bit version of Luxrender...and if you've got an OpenCL compatible video card, don't forget to get that version of Luxrender.

    Post edited by mjc1016 on
  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    Reality will work on W7 x64

    With Reality/LuxRender, image size will affect render times just as much as your lighting and surface setup.

    To get an idea about how some of it is done, you can download the Reality 2 manual from Paolo's website here - http://preta3d.com/reality-2-0/ - just below the video. Also check out his youtube chanel for different Reality videos to see what its like to use it currently - http://www.youtube.com/user/PretA3D/videos?view=0

    Size wise I normally do 600x900 or 1280x960 since they both fit to my screen quite nicely. But as stated before, what you have in your scene, your lighting and the settings of your surfaces will cause the render times to vary. A lot of questions about Lux may be answerable via their online wiki here - http://www.luxrender.net/wiki/Main_Page - I admit I have not looked at it much there is useful info there. Also feel free to hang out in their forums too since that talk about lux all day long there. I have picked up helpful pointers from the developers.

    One pointer is concerning the light groups tab in lux. The Light Group tab was not designed as a way to freely tweak your lights as your rendered. It was actully designed to help you figure out how much you need to increase or decrease you lights by via the exporter (in our case Reality) The reason for this has to do with light output (if I recall correctly) If you light needs to be increaded to 5.0 in lux, doing so in lux does not actully change how much its emiting into the scene whereas if you go back to Reality and adjust the Gain to 5.0 then in Lux the light emmits as it should (not quite the cool technical answer but its the basics)

    Also related to that, the lighting groups are only intended to help you figure out what each light or group needs to be set to as described above. Once you go to do your final render and you have all the lights Gain values adjusted to where you need them, make all the lights apart of the same group. It saves on RAM.

  • GeddGedd Posts: 2,444
    edited December 1969

    Regarding pwSurface, I was trying to apply it to surfaces.. did the same as I would HSS, Uber etc... I selected the surface then ctl+clicked, clicked, double clicked... nada. I'm wondering if I'm doing something wrong or if I just have to reload pwSurface.

  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    Did you remember to select the model in the scene tab and the surface in the surface tab

  • GeddGedd Posts: 2,444
    edited December 1969

    Yes, I ended up reloading and that seems to have fixed it..

  • MarkR151MarkR151 Posts: 78
    edited December 1969

    Thanks Mattymanx & mjc.

    What is SPPM?

  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    MarkR151 said:

    Thanks Mattymanx & mjc.

    What is SPPM?

    http://www.luxrender.net/wiki/SPPM

  • MarkR151MarkR151 Posts: 78
    edited September 2012

    That went waaaaaaaaaay over my head. Yikes!!

    I hope someday this stuff will be as easy as "Tea, Earl Grey, Hot!"

    Post edited by MarkR151 on
  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    Here is the image I had cooking for over 60 hours - http://www.daz3d.com/forums/viewreply/104070/ - I would post if here directly but no sense in reuploading it to the forum again and again.


    Mark, I dont use or understand SPPM either!

  • Scott LivingstonScott Livingston Posts: 4,104
    edited September 2012

    Actually uberenvironment and ubersurface have been a part of D|S since 3 came out. If you want a recommendation on an excellent set of lights for a reasonable price take a look at Lantino's Lights all of which include uberenvironment as a part of them. They are great on their own or as a jumping off place to start tweaking/adjusting for your own needs.

    The biggest flaw in uberenvironment is in the default settings which even at 4x high setting doesn't look great without adjustment. Select the uberenvironment light and look for a setting called "occlusion samples" and set this to at least 128. This will clear up the mottling effect you see with the default settings.


    When I bought Lantios Lights 2 in March, I was brand new to the world of 3D, and I noticed an immediate, significant increase in the quality and realism of my renders: http://www.daz3d.com/shop/lantios-lights-2

    Some more recent examples of what I've done with Lantios Lights 2: http://www.daz3d.com/forums/discussion/2516/P45/#44966 (no edits to lighting, no postwork)
    http://www.daz3d.com/forums/discussion/3452/#56704 (minor edits and postwork)
    http://www.daz3d.com/forums/discussion/5085/P15/#86434 (I added an extra distant light, no postwork)
    http://www.daz3d.com/forums/viewreply/93498/ (one image with postwork, one without)

    Edited to add: I don't own (and thus didn't use) UberSurface2, pwSurface2, or Interjections, any of which would probably have yielded even better results (but my examples should hopefully illustrate that with the right lightset you can get good results even without these things, or the Reality plug-in, or even much knowledge and experience about lighting). I did use the Elite Human Surface Shader, which is included in DS4 and DS4.5 (I think in DS3 also).

    Post edited by Scott Livingston on
  • StratDragonStratDragon Posts: 1,751
    edited December 1969

    Using DS and Reality to get to LuxRnderI have gotten some large renders (2400x3800) that had a single light source but were files in Studio upwards of 50MB - 70MB with several hundred surfaces to render in about 3-6 hrs. that I was happy enough with to call then finished. I7-920 12G RAM. I've never had anything come close to 48 hrs. let alone 60. Personally when I compared them to similar projects in Uberenvironment I like how they came out in LuxRender better. Lux does seem to slow down as more lights come into the scene but all of this depends on how your surfaces are set up. Scene setup is a combination science and art, out of the box without adjusting those surfaces generally leads to needlessly longer rendering times.

  • MarkR151MarkR151 Posts: 78
    edited December 1969

    Mattymanx said:
    Here is the image I had cooking for over 60 hours - http://www.daz3d.com/forums/viewreply/104070/ - I would post if here directly but no sense in reuploading it to the forum again and again.


    Mark, I dont use or understand SPPM either!

    So 1 character, 1 light and a very simple black background took 60 hours to render?

  • MattymanxMattymanx Posts: 3,410
    edited December 1969

    MarkR151 said:
    Mattymanx said:
    Here is the image I had cooking for over 60 hours - http://www.daz3d.com/forums/viewreply/104070/ - I would post if here directly but no sense in reuploading it to the forum again and again.


    Mark, I dont use or understand SPPM either!

    So 1 character, 1 light and a very simple black background took 60 hours to render?


    Yes, and it did not surprise me either. Unbiased rendering is not the fastest thing in the world and many different factors affect the time required to render.

  • MarkR151MarkR151 Posts: 78
    edited December 1969

    What is "unbiased rendering" ?

Sign In or Register to comment.
Rocket Fuel