Modernizing Shading and Rendering

In May, I’m starting to work for the Blender Institute again. Besides maintenance, bug fixing, release work, etc, my big target will be modernizing the shading and render system. We haven’t worked out the exact plans, but this is roughly what I have in mind:

First, there is the need for an improved shading system. Such a system should be node based, to give full flexibility to artists, and to make it possible for external render engines to extend it by adding their own nodes. On the other hand, we should make it physically based, to simplify materials and support global illumination. There are also issues like UV mapping and texturing workflow that need to be addressed. To get the design right, we intend to work out a design over the coming months, with help from blender users and developers working on external engines.

There is also the problem that the internal render engine is showing its age. Before and during the Sintel project, I have worked on refactoring and improving it, but found it simply too hard to get it where I think a modern render engine should be.

I do think there’s still a place for a “small studio” production render engine, that sits between a render engine with a focus on complete realism, and a totally programmable and customizable Renderman style engine. Over the past months, I’ve been working on a new engine called (codename Cycles), that I hope will fit that space. Here’s a sneak peek:

Cycles source code will be released in a week or two. Much work remains to be done, it’s going to take time before this will be integrated and full featured. Cycles is currently working as an external engine addon, but needs a heavily modified Blender.

There are many active open source render engines like LuxRender, Aqsis, Yafaray, Mitshuba, and we can do a lot still on the Blender side to make it possible to integrate these better. These other render engines will benefit
from the work that will be done on the shading system and the render API.

There may of course be developers that want to continue developing Blender Internal, and the intention is not to drop it immediately.

Anyway, I’m happy to be back, exciting times ahead :)


  1. Artists who are unfamiliar with the concept of PBR systems often assume that content creation is drastically different, usually because of the terminology that is used. If you’ve worked with modern shaders and art creation techniques you already have experience with many of the concepts of a physically based rendering system.

  2. Three years now and Cycles has come such a loooong way :) !

  3. Its funny, I completed an IT Diploma and I am currently doing Computer Science 3rd year. And Started to Script in Blender in 2012. I wonder how does Mr Bretch van Lommel does all these advanced things at his age. Compared to him I feel like an insect to a giant. How does he know so much? He is impressive.


  4. I have a piece of krop DELL Studio 1535 with oem graphics that makes cycles look like fuzzy logic. Until I can FIND OUT just exactly WHICH graphics cards on what motherboard running what CPU and subsequent GPU PLEASE don’t switch entirely to Cycles. I get the idea! real-time rendered quality 3d-views. Its ahead of its time! Its beautiful, in concept and execution! Just Pleas don’t drop the cheapo croppy blender renderer for another few years.

  5. Hi! Cycles already is epic!
    However, I’ve tested some OpenCL builds from and looks like my ATI card only supports OpenCL 1.0 – and the builds available use 1.1.
    So, does this mean older cards won’t be able to run it? Is it possible to make the code using OpenCL 1.1 downward compatible (with 1.0)?

  6. speechless, my dream came true. I love you Developers. Esp. you Brecht !!!

  7. can I just be informed when this releases!! :)

  8. Something that is not very clear is if i have 2 video cards (in SLI) would be any diference?

  9. I just hope they keep all the settings and sliders that we’ve come to know and love in Blender Internal. Currently, the reason I don’t like Yafaray and Lux is that there is no versatility in materials.

  10. Can Blender render as vector?…so I can use in Illustrator.

  11. Brecht, i do not understand how you could change the iOr setting to a 0-1 thing. I cannot find any sans and i still do not know any other setting then 0.3 for glass. Can you tell please how i have to recalculate normal iOr’s?

  12. So The reason that other commercial programs don’t render that fast is because they don’t have this guy Brecht working for them? And thats because they’re so exclusive? And/or Brecht doesn’t want their 9 to midnight BS? I personally am proud of Brecht, and Blender. I have learned as much if not more using Blender and following the development over the last 3 years, than in all my days in computing. I mean Maya has actually tried to get people interested and learning 3d computing, but they have not tried as hard as Blender, which is completely and totally free.

  13. Cycles rocks! Even without GPU support (in some builds). I got that it’s about twice faster than Modo’s renderer (when it was in 401).
    Thank you, Brecht!

  14. AMAZING!! Give me anything, a Beta, an Alpha, Heck, I’ll even take a Gamma! (lame greek alphabet joke) ANYTHING! This is what I’ve been waiting for for a LONG time! An Internal renderer that creates realistic images! Blender and all of the incredible people who work to make it better will never cease to amaze me. God bless you all!

  15. Sorry, but…is there the possibility to use a GPU to render alternatively at Cpu???

    Sorry for newby question….


  16. It would be nice, if the “render viewport in OpenGL” button would be able to render the scene without gizmos like “object center” and wireframe of lights.

    • Just turn on “only render” in the N panel/Display.

  17. Felicidades, very good.
    Eastman Double X = B&W film. 4,5,6 y 12 min = chemical development time.
    4 min soft contras, 12 min hard contras
    I have several CRF (camera response function) that I work well with Luxrender.
    pardon my English, Google translator

  18. How to select the GPU card if I have many GPU card installed?
    or cycles use all of them automatically?

  19. At long last. Spent some time with it last night, just on my windows i7 machine with 8 threads. Crap. Totally cool. Can’t wait until there is a CUDA/OpenCL build for windows.

    I use and love Octane. But if Brecht can implement this and get a workflow going, it is (already!) a viable replacement in my eyes. A lot of the interface enhancements in Octane already exist in Blender. And to be able to use nodes….. holy crap.

    We should all support the Blender Foundation in any way that we can. A few Euros here, a few dollars there- it all adds up. The BF has proven to us, time after time, that they will propel development as much as possible. Every time you use Blender, you should say to yourself: “how much would I have to shell out for Max or Maya, or any other production package?” Is giving $10 dollars or $5 euros too much to ask?

    I say we call for funding to build an entire team around Brecht and and get the renderer moving at breakneck speed. Head over to and toss in a few sheckles.

    No- I don’t work for Blender, or the Foundation, or get a kickback. But I am unabashed about the fact that we should support it as much as possible. Money will not fix every situation. But it sure can’t hurt. :-)

  20. That is just insanely good.
    Tell us, are there plans to implement the bake operation on this? Bake would be specially cool for us game developers who use blender outside it´s game engine. Looking forward to this!

    • Cycles will replace BI entirely in a year or two.
      So yes.

  21. Man just watched the feature of this on and it is looking amazing. Is there any development being done for a network renderfarm type option like the internal renderer has now?

    Jeremy Deighan

  22. Awesome Work!

  23. Welcome back! Dang, talk about returning with a bang. You are the man.

  24. woowwww…Way too good news

  25. Hi,
    I just tryed Cycles, it’s so incredible and very human interface and intuitive, (very fast)
    many compliments for the project

  26. This is awesome news, and an awesome feature for Blender.

    One feature that I’ve asked in the past, and now is the time to implement it, is object level visibility – to fade objects in and out – without using the compositor, without animating materials (complex to do on large objects with multiple materials per object, or groups/layers – even the ability to animate layer visibility as a float instead of an integer.

    Anyway… good luck, and keep up the good work. I’ve donated to Blender in the past, and am likely to continue to do so. :) cheers.

  27. this is awesome in too many levels

    hasn’t Brecht been sleeping lately? :)

  28. “You think that’s air you’re breathing?” –Morpheus

  29. welcome back brecht – it´s great to see you working for the blender institute again!

  30. Caustics please!
    Blender is God’s gift to me. Thanks developers.

  31. welcome back Brecht!!!

  32. DANIE, Octane render is very similar too to Radiance’s previous project: the open source Luxrender, which is also going GPU. Plagiarism who?

    Everyone doing raytracers is targetting the GPU, even though it’s hardware best at game-like scanline rendering.

  33. Yes Brecht this “”small studio” production render engine” like you have written will be great piece of tool for artists who want to visualize their ideas which are between reality and imagination. Definitely good way of thinking from “creative” point of view. Best Regards.

  34. This is really exciting, it brings real GI to blender and it looks very fast. Still, I think it’s important to have a fast, fake and noise-free renderer for animation. Imho, Blender internal should not be forgotten, and should also be modernized.

    • “Imho, Blender internal should not be forgotten, and should also be modernized.”
      That’s exactly what he is doing. A new modern BI. Don’t worry, you will be able to do anything you want with it, including non GI stuff.

  35. Looks great. If it would support texture baking I will be extremely happy :)
    Keep up a good work.

  36. That really looks awesome! Hope there’ll be a test build soon, I totally want to try this out! :)

  37. mmm…is very similar to octane render of Refractive Software …(Brecht has worked for them) I hope that the large community of open source has not been stained with plagiarism!!!

    • It hasn’t, read 9th comment above this one.

    • mmm… read a few posts above (reply by Thomas Dinges). I think Brecht has proved to be smart enough not to need to copy code. The concepts are documented and there is plenty of open source implementations to take inspiration from.


  38. This is super awesome and better yet, welcome back, exciting times ahead for sure

  39. Yes, blender really needs renderer no worse than vray and mental ray, i’m mot sure about realtime (it will be impossible to render big scenes (about a billion polygons + hires textures with it)). But if blender will have a renderer compartible with Mental Ray or Vray it (blender) will be compatible with 3dsmax/maya and many other mainstream software.

  40. Excellent work brecht! You’re a brave man, blender has a long way to go to catch up to 2011 in this regard but so far so good.

    For me one of the most promising parts of this post is seeing that you’ve made a conscious decision to target a specific audience (small studios/freelancers – which is blender’s main professional user base), and I agree 110% with the design decisions you’re making based on that. Knowing that you’ve got a clear goal in mind gives a lot of confidence that things will go well – don’t listen to people trying to widen scope or trying to satisfy too many people, including (especially? ;) ton! :) A tool that does a job really well for its target audience is so much better than one that tries and fails to be everything to everyone.

    Looking forward to see how this progresses.

    PS. It would be awesome if this was kept interfacing through the render API. It’s the best way to ensure that external renderers are integrated seamlessly and not treated as second class citizens.

  41. Makes every stage of the process look like it’s own work of art.

  42. …and to think I was getting ready to buy Modo. With this and B-mesh, hopefully, I’ll convert to Blender and call my 3D package DONE!

  43. Here’s what i would like to see, blender, yafaray, lux and all other open source renderers join together and develop an opensource renderer that blows away all commercial software . I think that there’s to much fragmentation and resources spread to thin. i think there needs to be a pooling of coding design talent for this project. what do others think??
    lux is to slow(currently)and the firefly is horrible(i need to do more research on this for i’m pretty sure its a user prob ;-)>
    havn’t used yafray successfully
    tried others but struggled to get them to work.
    i want to be a guinea pig for this squeak squeak

  44. You obviously learnt a lot from your time at Refractive Software.

      Ton already said ^^

      Having a public & open project means we need to conduct the utmost ethical practices. That’s an intrinsic value. Everything we do is open, and anyone can read the code and techniques to verify if that’s original, not something copied from other sources.

      Anyone who has ever met with or worked with Brecht knows that he’s a very modest, easy going and ethical person. He’s also a brilliant developer, who took a long experience and a lot of 3d coding competences to enthusiastically join Refractive Software. The fact this company let him go after a short while was a shock to me as well. Brecht then needed a while to sort out stuff, and luckily decided to join the Blender team again. We unfortunately can’t pay him what commercial 3d companies could afford, so his decision was based on choosing for working in a pleasant, encouraging and rewarding environment first.

      What he worked on, and will work on, are common concepts and techniques where everyone in the industry is heading anyway. Check Modo, Lightwave, Max, Maya for example. It’s also well aligned with design proposals and discussions here in the studio and on our public developer mailing list from long before he joined RS. If it wasn’t Brecht, similar ideas would be in Blender sooner or later anyway. :)


  45. Awesome !!! I am anxious to see more of it.

  46. Yep OpenCL is going to be supported too, was just not as simple to quick get to work. Blender will remain cross-platform and we for sure wouldn’t accept development that benefits one hardware manufacturer only.

  47. Cant we use yet?
    “Cycles source code will be released in a week or two.”

  48. I’m offering to be a tester!!!!!

  49. That’s great and really needed but…
    Sintel was rendered with the Render Branch, which seems like isn’t been developed lately. I really liked it since it was quick and simple although not physically based, so is that project dead? What will happen with the Render Branch? I’ve been waiting so long for it to be commited to trunk and now it seems like it will never be.
    Don’t get me wrong, that’s great news!

  50. I’m really glad that you are back Mr Brecth. I do hope that you will stay at the Blender Institute for a long time.

    You are really making a great great job with this new renderer. But I also really like the fact that you are also thinking of all the great open source great renderers out there that are also giving there best. Ant that you are thinking of making things easier for them with there integration in Blender.

    I wish you all the best, the whole community is gonna support all the Devs at the BI.


    A little demand on my part. Please after you have finish the new renderer. Could you please think of making the BGE better.I do not know if this falls in your expertise but I’m learning that great feature of Blender now and it would be grate if it gets better as we can do so much with it.

    Thanks for reading, have a nice day.

  51. Brecht this is very exciting news! I’m sure I speak for all Blender users when I say “welcome back!”

    Please keep us abreast of the development; if there is anything I can do to contribute let me know.

  52. Sweet! Hope this means we can code our own shaders for blender! That’s something I really miss. (light shaders too)

    I don’t suppose it would be possible to build a system that uses both a raytracer and Reyes-like system? I’m not saying Renderman is the answer, just that after using it I understand it’s incredible potential (and drawbacks).

    The choice to cache visibility and shadow data would be cool as well, so long as it encompasses a proper “lazy” behaviour.

    I know all these things are way off in the distance as building a render engine requires a lot more important stuff. But if these can be considered and possibly worked into the grand plan that would be super cool.

    Probably also help increase Blender’s extensibility.


  53. really looking forward to viewport-based gpu rendering(for certain projects). Hopefully OpenCL will also be supported

  54. Excellent news!!!

  55. Welcome back, Brecht. You know we love you, right?

    Also, Cycles is… wow… I’m gonna die…

  56. You’re very welcome back! Great to have you here again, render engine looks real promising!

  57. Impressive work!
    Is cycle going to support hair?

  58. Getting Rid of material and texture nodes? Sure.
    But hows about textures for Brushes and whatnot?

  59. One question.
    Will it be unbiased engine?

  60. Nice work. Welcome back. How was the Real work world?. We got a meaningfully blender update out of it all. thank you. :) ;)

  61. I’m so psyched about brecht coming back :D

    But i’m worried about one thing :

    If blender gets an awesome rendering engine which is physically based and all that good stuff can we still make unreal stuff??? Because in some images something unreal (or not so physically based)is what makes the image awesome. I usually acheive these “effects” in the compositor (ex: excessive blurring etc…)

  62. I thought as much, but figured I would ask.

  63. Are you going to add data on the pixels other than RGB? I mean, the renderer stores the lighting info and keeps it rendered while the user can change the shader color easily?

  64. Es sorprendente, espero se integre pronto a blender.
    It’s amazing, I hope soon to be integrated blender.

  65. Hi brecht,
    this is looking amazing so far.
    there’s recently been talk about the possibility of direct integrating slg(smallluxgpu) and it’s live mode into blender, maybe you know about it:
    for me it seems very similar to your efforts.
    Luxrays library can basically have both OpenCL and CUDA backends, which is also interesting.

  66. Regarding the Texturing, why don’t we ditch

    * Material Nodes
    * Texture Nodes

    and make both a single Shader nodes! Imagine the things you could animate if you’re able to just hook up a Texture file via these shaders node seen above, to “diffuse” or “specular” socket.

    then use other Math etc nodes to animate it.

    • Or even ditch all the nodes and allow one kind of node that can be used with everything whose final output gives it a type.

      For example this would allow python scripts such as blended cities to generate cities with procedural buildings using node setups which proved to be impossible when I looked at it last year.

      Or in this context shader nodes and more advanced pattern nodes

  67. This is unbelievable! Genius!

  68. OMG OMG OMG!!! Blender just keeps on surprising me!!! Welcome bretch !! You are awesome!!!!

  69. welcomeback!


  70. WellCome back!
    It’s THE BEST BLENDER NEWS EVER!!! Especially for those who use Blender professionally!
    Good luck!

  71. Behalf of the Blender to Renderman community – welcome back! We are excited to see what you plan to do. :)

  72. What would be really cool would be if only the new or changed object was rendered with the unchanged stuff staying as it is. Not sure if this could be done though.

    • this would be difficult because the lighting of the surrounding objects depends on the color of the changed object. IMHO it would be possible to change this color too if the software didn’t save “red” there but “1/2 of the color of X”

  73. once this is done I’ll be fully satisfied with blender, cause in my point of view, the big downside of blender now is it’s render features. Congrats and keep the good work

  74. I’d like to try this feature out in a graphicall builds. Renderman and Raytracing (both options) would be great if possible.

    Many thanks Brecht; (sic) blendcome back (as Satish Goda would say).

  75. Whoa! Sweet news there. Can’t wait to see it implemented. Is it a bit too much to wish it to be on 2.58?

  76. Now that’s a superstar re-entry Brecht :)

  77. All Hail Brecht, our one and true Blender savior!

  78. Can’t wait!!! Great job; this is exactly what Blender needs to “compete” with the other major rendering and modelling suites.

  79. Indeed exciting times ahead. I feel the quality, design and scope of the modern Blender projects reflect the maturity of the development team. BMesh, the nodetree, the tiled compositor, Cycles, Animato, the RNA itself.. this aren’t just cool fancy features but well designed tools with flexibility in mind. Even (specially) when it means starting from scratch, the dev team shows a strong sense of direction and long term planning

    Kudos to all!

  80. very thankful to have this work being done. being a freestyle enthusiast, i hope that there is some thought into freestyle integration hopefully being merged before next release. 3ds max’s nitrous (or whatever) has good fast rendering liek in your video with also NPR lines and such. I realize how the two may not share any link to make this possible, but I hope it’s at least pondered.

  81. Just a few days ago I thought about the exact same renderer being missing. And now it’s there and Brecht is back.

    I hope that things will work out with Brecht and .. Oh damn, this is nice news.

  82. Looks great! (And welcome back)

  83. Ladies and gentlemen. The Brecht Van Lommel Fan Club is now officially re-instated (and soon to be registered as an official tax-exempt religion). Bow before the Master. ;P

  84. sweet thing to see – brecht – did u see slg’s integration? it looks similar to yours – maybe you and slg’s devs could join forces? or share experience?

    times are changing soo fast…we should start a special fund for this awesome mod

  85. I would like blender to go more toward renderman, but as long as exporters get good support I’ll settle for 3delight. Great to see improvements in rendering!

    • I agree with simon, make good support for 3delight. btw really cool rendering.

  86. What is important to me, that there still is a possibility for old machines (mine 2.7ghz 512mbram) to render, without needing hours, or the computer dieing.

  87. YYYEEEEEESSSSSSSSSS I haven’t even watched the video yet but YYYEEEEESSSSSS anyway! Great to have you back in the loop Brecht!

  88. A W E S O M E! People. Donate more, we have to keep Brecht with us :p.
    Great work.

  89. Anyone here realized the FAST that this render engine IS??????

    I didn’t see any CPU raytracer render that FAST in my whole life.
    This is simple a humble demonstration of what Bretch is capable of.

    And now he is Back, too many good news to hold my heart working!!

    AND in addition Campbell will stay with us, i was really worried that others companies stole him from us!

    This will be definitively the year of Blender

  90. fuck yeah. epic brecht is gonna make blender even more epic, like a boss! :D

  91. Brecht, you think sensibly and do the really great work. I’m glad about all this progress very much! :)
    BI will be forever as the best basic render engine for stylized renders. And your new engine will be the best solution for realistic pictures and movies. The full harmony :)

  92. this looks great. are you thinking about your own shading stuff or something like OSL is the idea ?

  93. Great news. I’m happy that there is cap space to offer you such a work and it seams you are looking forward for this challenge :)
    Wish you great ideas, many great helping hands and success to implement a great solution.

  94. Pretty damn awesome. One thing Blender also -really- needs is a workflow redesign that allows multiple rendering AS a node, which could be multiple passes (I.e. Portal effect with two cams rendering out then composited)or integrating different renderes. also, being able to pull a video file into the locked camera/matte like most of the big budget apps could give Blender major respect in the VFX world.

  95. Whoa! this is just amazing!!! welcome back! :)

  96. I almost had tears going down in my eyes…

    thanx bring it oooon !!!

  97. Wow fantastic. The most useful thing a renderer could have from my perspective would be a drop down ‘environment’ list so I only need to worry about the scene / camera setup and then I can pick time of day, weather, rotation from ‘into the sun/moon’, light type – street lamp / table lamp / candle / etc. without the technical knowledge so I can mood the scene quickly and then tweak once the feel is right. Awesome stuff in the reel though and great to have sight of things to come thank you for sharing !

  98. Welcome back!!!
    That is amazing!

  99. It looks preety good!! =D

  100. Wow – utterly fantastic news! Imagine tying this in with social network rendering capabilities like RenderWeb. The potential for superior quality at reasonable render times would no longer be an issue. Go Brecht!

  101. Looks great, though I hope much of the internal renderer stays too. Approximate AO and indirect lighting is one of the best things about rendering in Blender, IMHO, and most of us Maya users wish we had it for the awesome speed!

  102. Thanks Brecht for working for the Blender Institute.

  103. Welcome back Brecht!

    Everything looks awesome so far :)

    Will the GPU rendering be limited to the GPU ram amount?

  104. Wow ..nice work Brecht and wb…..ohooo..I see the benefit in the Game Engine

  105. You’re The Man, sir.

  106. Cool!
    Is that GPU?

  107. This is what I want most, thank you!

  108. Brecht, you are a true genius!!!

  109. Is this a dream or really where Blender Will go into pro rendering engine internal. It’s mostly welcome to have you back Brecht.

  110. Brecht, it’s so good to have you back! Welcome! :)

  111. Welcome back :)

  112. That looks amazing I can’t wait to get my hands on it.
    Just when I think blender gets awesome it’s get awesomer! lol

  113. very cool! =D
    but won´t the physically based part make the render time slooooooooow as hell?

    • Have a look at the video. The active view updates pretty quickly and that’s on CPU rendering, on a dual core only. I think it’s safe to say that speed won’t be an issue, and if it becomes one the equal amount of time it takes to render will produce a result far superior to the current BI renderer in the same amount of time.

      Plain and simple, quality will always take more time but the results are worth it and so far it seems that the time sacrifice for increased quality is nearly negligible.

  114. Best news I’ve heard since that of the existence of a free 3D animation program :)

  115. Finally it happens!!

  116. Welcome back !!! It’s simply amazing ! :)

  117. Really awesome, that looks super cool, blenders internal has been needing a bit of work for a while. Really looking forward to testing this one out in the future.

  118. Wow!!! Can’t wait for it!! :D

  119. Wow! Great news!

  120. welcome back!

  121. a REAL TIME rendering….and so light, even at core2 duo cpu…this is really awesome. can’t wait for this treasure :)

  122. Looks excellent, very impressive. Looking forward to it. Exciting times are ahead.

  123. Way too good news :)

  124. When/Could it be possible to use this engine to work visually in blender to make decision about lightning colors textures etc. (direct light + maybe AO) and then use blender internal for rendering (with all its strengths) ? (maybe use it for re-rendering simple passes for composition).

    It will speeds decisions greatly, without having to constant rerendering.
    Also I think in the early stage of development using it for something like masking/rotoscoping should be very useful.

    Overall working visually is something amazing and I am very intrigue what people could develop using rendering API.

    High Hopes.

  125. Awesome work! its like a dream I can’t wait to see this finished

  126. That is really great news, shading and rendering is the part of blender that is a bit behind. Please, don’t hesitate to modify or change parts of Blender because users are used to something – users will learn. Also, if you need models for testing I’ll be happy to help.

  127. This made my day!

    I have a question throught…does your render, Cycles, support ATI graphic-cards?
    I’m kinda tired of see all the better renderes only for Nvidia :)

    Thanks you so much!

  128. Awesome!!
    Welcome back Brecht! This was unexpected, but great news!!! The video looks really great so far. It seems that you have learned some new improvements from octane!!! :D

    I am really looking forward!

  129. Excellent news !!

    been dreaming of “modern” GI in blender for years now :)!!

    +1 for “shadow only” materials for compositing and may I add bakeable GI for game environment creation :)

    Thanks and good luck for all the work !

  130. Oh my gosh! Words cannot describe how awesome that is… Keep up the epic work!

  131. Thats Amazing!!! :D
    Please take account the options like: visible to camera, visible to reflection, refraction and alpha tweaks. That is so needed for compositing :)

    • Jaaaaaaaaaa! Wow!
      And yes, Eibriel: Those additional options would be very cool

  132. any plans on PhysX\OpenCL?

  133. Woah, this is looking great already! Amazing work Brecht; exciting times seem to be ahead for Blender! =)

  134. Welcome back, dude.

    Cycles is looking pretty sweet, hoping that you have fun being back in the fold :)

  135. Looking epic from the early snippets. I guess it’s a bit early to ask how well displacements will work with all this? My main raytracer experience is with Mental Ray which unless I’m missing something seems to crawl with anything higher than some mild displacements here and there due to the poly count/required raytree. Other than that, very excited already. :)

    • This is sort of the choice you have to make in designing a render engine, either you start from a renderman style engine, and work to get various lighting effects added one by one, or you start from a ray tracer, and work your way towards supporting heavier scenes. There’s a no free lunch, but we can do many things to improve rendering displacement.

      • Hi Brecht, fantastic job with Cycles! I just want to ask you if you are planing on the long run to have support for dispersion effects. I know this requires the light to be treated differently in code.

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