Cheif compatible 3D software


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1 hour ago, Grumpka said:

This is great!  Free is always good.  I can't imagine paying 2k for it though!  :)1596110996_Image01.thumb.jpg.76557fee27334c56f87cf8f34dcf16c0.jpg

I'm sure there is a learning curve to getting more realistic renders, but the soft sun shadows alone might make it worth the effort.  

(no soft shadow control in PBR is a major oversight by CA IMHO)
 

 

If you try Twinmotion, keep in mind that none of the lights in CA are recognized, you will need to redo them using their lights. Exteriors are easier as they mostly only use the sun.

 

You can create softer shadows in CA PBR. One thing worth trying is to open up the camera DBX and under the Show Shadow box, uncheck Ray Casted Sun Shadows and see if you prefer the look.

 

The other method to control shadows is by creating a spotlight array as a substitute for the sun. This scene has an array of about 12 spot lights of varying intensities and slightly different positions, note the larger shadow right bottom on the grass and patio, the edges are softer. Also the soffit shadow across the back garage door. The array also contains one spot with shadows turned off to control the overall shadow depth.

 

188540807_TestHouse_SunOnly.thumb.jpg.e0975721b634997d6b6172f8893b8dc1.jpg

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I intensified my original.

 

I find it interesting as the interpretation of realism is often dictated within the context of the relative degree of realism of one version when directly compared to another.

 

Abode Chief PBR

1864443763_Untitled1acopy2.thumb.jpg.db0bf22d55c467ea61c6ca8787a210a3.jpg

 

Grumpka Twinmotion

636947847_Image05.jpg.4e7c4694b613663cd7a1961058aa3893.thumb.jpg.406406d57f09d075d124aa6e172704ae.jpg

 

This so called realism is also influenced by ones personal interpretation of what constitutes realism. From my perspective I Iean more to how I envision things to look as my eye would see it in real life, which can be distinctly different than an artistic interpretation of this.

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7 minutes ago, Grumpka said:

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder!  Perhaps, if we want to be picky, 'realism' isn't the best word.  Artistic Rendering is better, as that is what all this is.  I like the WARMTH and feel of what I was able to get in Twinmotion.   Your Cheif PBR is nice and sharp and you have some skills I need to work towards for sure.  However, when I think of what I feel good presenting a customer,  I think the twinmotion presentation gives me a bit more of the feel I was after.  Doesn't mean I won't strive to keep at it with CA. In fact, been spending the day reading the forum, the manual, and playing around.   I've had nothing but positive feedback on my work. so that is what counts.  

 

Absolutely, I was not attempting to state whether one was superior to the other, they are different and it is up to each person to decide their preference, not I.

 

I think overall there are three formats, Artistic Renderings, Realistic and Photo Realistic, the latter which is most likely the pinnacle of rendering. In respect to CA's PBR I think it can do better, but this is likely to elude us as the current structure/flow does not naturally provide the user with a good sense of direction, it's difficult to predict the effect when changing something and how that change may impact on something else. This results in significant user frustration and it certainly doesn't do much to encourage it's continued use.

 

Anyways, keep up the good work and keep posting your results and experiences.

 

 

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Add a vote for Thea, plugins for most 3d softwares such as Sketchup

runs off of GPU and CPU, one of the few that can..also has an add on that can be purchased to create your own render frm including utilizing external GPU's...pretty much the fastest render engine available that offers photo-realism....and its very affordable for someone offering rendering services as a business model

samples:

Chinese_village_and_Dragon-66.thumb.jpg.080a2e8b403c25eecbeb9e1c0d9056c7.jpgsatellite.thumb.jpg.f02de1b1016a5589d5b3e6a4125174b6.jpgSimple_Interior___1___Created_by_camara-548.thumb.png.27caa9d6499caeef232e24949f75c508.png

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Please do not construe this as if I'm advocating using CA's PBR for more photo realistic renderings .If I was a professional graphics artist such as Rene I would be using the likes of Thea or Lumion, no if ands or buts.

 

When evaluating CA's PBR I look at it from two perspectives, one being the fundamental capability of the rendering engine and the other being the effort it takes to exploit this capability. To put this in some form of context CA's PBR is like using a 100% manual camera, the photographer has to manually set and control every aspect of the scene, sun, lights, materials, models, colors, virtually every aspect. This is complicated by the fact that the default settings for all of these elements do not seem to be conducive for the best results. More sophisticated cameras have many additional features and algorithms that reduce or eliminate such a high degree of manual input, thus freeing up the photographer so they can spend a higher degree of their time on the creative side of the process.

 

Here is an example of what I consider to be the best CA PBR I've been able to create to date. Not perfect by any means, but it does provide in my opinion a reasonably good example of what the engine can do when given some decent settings. 

1786339553_LP_Kitchen_PhotoMatch.thumb.jpg.4fe05d05efd2472df18bd4c2e9bbbcd4.jpg

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16 hours ago, TheKitchenAbode said:

Here is an example of what I consider to be the best CA PBR I've been able to create to date.

Nice work Graham.

 

BTW, how much does a bottle of that 400

year old Rembrandt signature wine go for?   :)

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22 hours ago, Grumpka said:

 

That's one shiny kitchen finish.  Nice CA render though. 

I can agree up to a point about CA's PBR, but honestly, the vast, and I mean, VAST, majority of what I've seen from CA has never come close to what 3rd party render software can do with little effort.   That makes the case for the investment of an independent render engine.  I find way too much of my time being wasted forcing the 'manual' camera of CA to get mediocre results. I think it is time for CA to ditch the Ray trace feature and replace it with perhaps a more capable PBR engine.  Even if we could make the case for CA's Ray Trace engine offering better quality renders, why would one want to wait 30 minutes to 30 hours for the result when you can invest in a 3rd party engine that can do it in almost zero minutes?

Time is money.  Can't say it enough.  Beautiful results, consistent results, in the least amount of time.  Right now, I'm starting to see the light (pun intended) in 3rd party render engines. Bang out the design in Chief with the ability to design in a real time PBR environment.  Export to 3rd party, replace some materials, adjust here and there, move sun around, minutes later you have a very beautiful, inviting scene.   Did I mention 'FUN'.  CA's PBR or RT just isn't fun when it comes to messing around.  It can be too frustrating vs the end result. 
 

 

Yes, I did overdo it on the cabinet finish.

 

I'm just not sure about "what 3rd party software can do with little effort...minutes later a very beautiful, inviting scene" So far anything that I have seen posted by the average user form Twinmotion is just ok. I'm not saying Twinmotion can't produce superior quality renderings but in order to achieve that it requires more than a few simple clicks

 

I played with Twinmotion a bit and initially it seemed exciting, making it rain, leaves blowing in the wind, etc. However, this soon wore off when I wanted to roll up my sleeves and attempt to generate a more photo realistic scene. I watched one of their videos, it was about 30 minutes and speed up, the user must have made 1,000 adjustments and tweaks to lighting and materials to achieve the final end result. You have to keep in mind that this user would have been highly skilled and knowledgeable, definitely not your average user.

 

The other thing when looking at 3rd party gallery renderings is to be aware that many of those renderings have also been post processed in the likes of Photoshop. Rene posted this one a few threads ago.

satellite.jpg.2f3893482a18f981b599bcae5d2fd244.thumb.jpg.bad78a930f32b6c08b2cc08e7e80db3a.jpg

 

It's a beautiful rendering, if you load it into a pic editor and zoom in it appears that this is a composition of a rendered element, likely the pavilion, set within a real photo of the main street scape. If you look were the sky/clouds meets the street scape it also appears that the sky/clouds were also added in as a separate element. This type of result can't be achieved via a few clicks, no matter the rendering engine.

 

I fully understand that you are not looking to generate this level of rendering and as such Twinmotion may very well be the software package that meets your needs. I just thinks it's a bit unfair to overly criticize CA's PBR due in part to the fact that the user may be having difficulties in developing a clear understanding as to how to correctly adjust the lights and materials.

 

Getting decent results in CA's PBR is really no different than what it takes to get an accurate kitchen cabinetry layout. It does not take long to realize that just picking and dropping preconfigured library cabinets on the floor is not going to do it. To really pull it off you need to dig deep into the program and explore and develop numerous other techniques, this takes considerable front end time and effort. The payoff is that once you put this front end time and effort in then both time and effort significantly reduce.

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1 hour ago, TheKitchenAbode said:

the sky/clouds

Just an FYI Thea houses an incredibly powerful HDR spherical background tool with support for HDR lighting..the clouds were not photoshopped in but we're a 16k spherical image that actually produces reflections and light. This is the same method used for creating mirrored finishes on vehicles from the surrounding environment without the heavy lifting of having to create the environment.

There are so many tools in Thea that would make you eye roll at CA...CA doesn't compare, it simply can't...and when you really get good at Thea results can be had in a very short amount of time.

I still prefer using CAs PBR for my business model, it's right in front of me so to speak...it also differentiates a tier for the next level of services or LOD(level of detail)

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I think people would be doing themselves a favor by making sure not to overlook Chief’s ray trace engine.  It’s a little sad to me to see people so quickly abandon it for the quick and easy PBR.  

 

Don’t get me wrong, the new PBR is great and I can only assume it will improve in upcoming versions, but in its current iteration it still falls short of a ray trace for photo realism and I don’t see how this could even be considered up for debate.  Some of the PBR’s that have been posted are great, but done properly, there’s no way a Chief PBR is going to beat a Chief day trace for photo realism and it isn’t even close.  There are simply things that can be done in a ray trace that cannot be done in a PBR.  Try for example to create a dark room with only one corner lit up by a small lamp, or create a nice bright kitchen with realistically dark nooks and crannies...

 

See the last rendering in Grumpka’s post above...notice how you can’t hardly see under the breakfast nook table?  Or check out the proper shadows and ambient occlusion at the panels and bottom side of the dishwasher.  Those are the type of proper lighting and shadow control that’s not possible to recreate in a PBR right now.  It’s those little things that make all the difference in the world when realism is the goal.  

16E6A007-37E9-4F26-8BA2-8E901779DF25.png

087A6BBD-1F01-4299-98A6-4063ECB84E40.png

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42 minutes ago, Alaskan_Son said:

there’s no way a Chief PBR is going to beat a Chief day trace for photo realism and it isn’t even close

totally agreed, and not here to argue, for those looking for a built in best of, raytrace for the win..but at a fraction of the setup time in CA's Ray trace I can have double the render quality in a 3rd party software..I don't spend any time in PBR really, my sun/cameras/materials are already set in a SAM .plan it's pretty instantaneous...that is the draw for me personally..if I want better quality I export.

CA doesn't have true spherical backdrops or environment light, it doesn't offer material clipping, instancing, material blending or layering, its AO is a joke, doesn't offer save state rendering, material or object ID masks(or any other masks).No displacement, no mediums, poor emitter control, no .ies support, no coatings, no anisotropy, sigma, micro roughness, translucent layers, absorption. It doesn't have camera functions like F-stop focal length size of lense, aperture, ISO, Custom resolution etc. and the biggest annoyance for me is its cross section slider isn't true in the sense that if I cut away the roof, the sun shouldn't shine through!!!!!!!!

No batch rendering, no farms, no material tree, no model tree, no global editing

Man I feel like I can go on and on now that I'm typing...CA is a joke for rendering, truly.

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55 minutes ago, Grumpka said:

It only runs as a plug in to sketchup, cinema 4D or Rhino?  That's a bummer if that is the case.

 

You will find that most of these 3rd party rendering programs work this way, they are usually designed as plug-ins. Linking to an exported 3DS file like Twinmotion does is likely the best you can do.

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1 minute ago, Grumpka said:

Looks like Lumion runs as stand-alone as well.  That program is a 2-3k investment though.  Thea use to be a stand-alone called Thea Studio.  For a while, I believe it was setup so if you purchased a thea studio, you would pick a plug-in to Sketch up or such, but you still had the stand-alone studio.  That doesn't seem to be the case now.  Maybe, Rene knows as he is a Thea user. 

 

Yes, if you wish to use a 3rd party renderer without the need for another interfacing program you will need to find one that offers a standalone version and then work via the CA exported 3DS model, essentially the way Twinmotion works. How well this works really depends on your workflow and your design process, if you start rendering before your model is fully completed then you will be bouncing back and forth between the two programs. At lest with something like Twinmotion the 3DS model link is live so you can jump back into Chief, adjust your cabinet, export back to the same model and Twinmotion will automatically recognize the changes.

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54 minutes ago, TheKitchenAbode said:

 

Yes, if you wish to use a 3rd party renderer without the need for another interfacing program you will need to find one that offers a standalone version and then work via the CA exported 3DS model,

Once upon a time the goto on the forum was Kerkythea (free) the predecessor to Thea.

Kerkythea is still out there as a stand alone freeware. Look here

I have no idea what the differences are, maybe Rene can tell you.

 

When Thea was being released as a commercial product they had an early adopter price so I got a license for Studio. I only ever fiddled with it. Came a time that there was a kitchen job where I thought I'd need it. Rene was kind enough to give me a short tutorial on it-impressive. I fiddled a little more.

PBR came out in Beta a few weeks later and that job went south so Thea sits unused. My work doesn't require more than I can do quickly with PBR, not near what Graham and Rene do, but using their tips the folks (extremely grateful fellas-thanks :)

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5 hours ago, Grumpka said:

  Thea use to be a stand-alone called Thea Studio.

A few years back Altair bought out Thea and started pumping new life into the brand...the 2.1 version plugins are much faster to render than thea studio...I got in touch with Altair a few months back and they said they were in development..checked in today and they are in the beta state of the software which I believe you can download for free...but the time limit on the license is probably not enough to be able to do anything with it starting with no experience in the software.

https://www.thearender.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=167&t=25896

I had to put this together last night in CA and render in Thea...came out okay, not photo-realistic but good enough for the presentation being made:

1700039810_DISCORDRM2.thumb.png.2b96c57c066cdbde4fd21c21c5a4ca1a.png

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1
1 hour ago, Renerabbitt said:
 
 
 
1
1 hour ago, Renerabbitt said:

A few years back Altair bought out Thea and started pumping new life into the brand...the 2.1 version plugins are much faster to render than thea studio...I got in touch with Altair a few months back and they said they were in development..checked in today and they are in the beta state of the software which I believe you can download for free...but the time limit on the license is probably not enough to be able to do anything with it starting with no experience in the software.

https://www.thearender.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=167&t=25896

I had to put this together last night in CA and render in Thea...came out okay, not photo-realistic but good enough for the presentation being made:

1700039810_DISCORDRM2.thumb.png.2b96c57c066cdbde4fd21c21c5a4ca1a.png

Actually, that looks pretty damn nice!  I'd be pleased with that level of quality.  

 

The new interface in Inspire looks great!  I wonder what the cost of the package would be?  I'd be interested in the studio and the render for sure.  Signing up for the beta!

Thanks for sharing!

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On 8/1/2019 at 12:58 PM, Grumpka said:

Actually, that looks pretty damn nice!  I'd be pleased with that level of quality.  

 

The new interface in Inspire looks great!  I wonder what the cost of the package would be?  I'd be interested in the studio and the render for sure.  Signing up for the beta!

Thanks for sharing!

Here is the same project using sketchup and Thea 2.0

It's actually a really nice interface and thea 2.0 works WAY faster than 1.5

This was 19 minutes to render at HD res:

734033753_DISCORD2-Camera2(ACT).thumb.png.490638358f3983491bf306ae5b2a69e9.png204475172_discord5.thumb.png.67822e733d392597b4745c545eacb817.png219-08-02-RM2-PLAN.thumb.png.fe0f64acb975f5831c477a0cc0a56cc8.png

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7 minutes ago, Renerabbitt said:

CA model only, no imports, spent 30 minutes establishing materials, camera settings and environment, 9 minute render.

600456314_TEST-Camera2(ACT).thumb.png.125899956c0a3bbb7bc72d47d0bb8d2d.png

 

That's what I consider photo realistic. Really great job Rene. Looks like a professional photography shot on real film and photographic paper.

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