Join Brian Bradley for an in-depth discussion in this video New UI elements and Quick Settings, part of V-Ray 3.0 for 3ds Max Essential Training.
- Along with the V-Ray toolbar, Chaos Group have also added a number of other UI enhancements in V-Ray 3 that are aimed at both simplifying and speeding up rendering for artists who are much more concerned with producing a good looking render, than they are with tweaking and fine tuning every aspect of the render process. The first of the two enhancements that we will look at in this video is the simplified UI layout, that is now applied by default to certain areas of the 3ds Max Render Settings dialogue. In fact, if I go ahead and open that up using the F10 key, and then jump, first of all, into the V-Ray tab, you can see that in both the Global switches and Color mapping roll-outs, we have this color coded toggle button, currently set to green, that says, "Basic." This means that the roll-out is currently displaying only the most important, or likely to be changed, parameters that are housed here.
If I click the button, however, we get a color change, a text change, but most importantly, a change in the number of controls now available to us. Essentially taking us to the next level of complexity, in terms of how much we can tweak these particular options inside V-Ray. A second click now will take us into full Expert mode, whereby we have access, as we did in previous versions of V-Ray, to all of the controls that the engine provides here. If we jump into the GI tab, we can see that this same process is also at work in other areas of the UI, such as the Irradiance mapping controls, where the difference between the three modes, if I just click through them, is clearly quite significant.
Now a question that some users have asked is, "Are they missing out on V-Ray functionality "if they spend their time "working exclusively in Basic mode?" Well the answer to that, strictly speaking, is yes. Simply because there are options we can tweak and fine tune in Expert mode, for instance, that simply aren't there in Basic. These, however, tend to be fairly low level controls that we probably shouldn't be altering unless we have a fairly extensive knowledge of what they are there for, and how they will impact the renders we are taking.
Indeed, Chaos Group have done a really good job of sorting V-Rays controls into these three working modes. So much so, that finished production quality work can easily be produced without ever leaving Basic mode. Another UI element that has been provided to help users, both new and old, is the Quick Settings dialogue, which we can open up from the V-Ray toolbar. Once inside the dialogue, we get four basic rendering scenarios from which to choose. Exterior, Interior, VFX, and Studio Setup.
With each preset housing controls and settings that may provide a good rendering starting point for the project type we are working on. The premise behind the Quick Settings dialogue is pretty straightforward, and obvious really, in that it gives users the ability to render scenes to a desired quality level by tweaking only the three most impactful options available. Namely, GI, Shading rate, and the Antialiasing, or image sampling, quality. If I just click the Exterior option, for instance, we see that we have various GI combinations available, such as Brute force and Brute force, or Irradiance mapping and light cache.
All of which are controlled by means of a percentage based quality slider that does keep us nicely informed as to the settings being used inside each of the GI engines. Shading quality gives us the ability to control the number of rays used for Antialiasing, versus rays given over to other shading effects, such as blurry reflections, global illumination, area shadows, and so on. Higher values tell V-Ray to spend less time on Antialiasing, or eye ray samples, and more time sampling the aforementioned Shading effects.
Finally, we have the Antialiasing, or image sampling, quality slider itself, which, again, works on a percentage basis, and gives us a readout of the max number of subdivs that V-Ray is allowed to use, with the choice of either bucket, that is adaptive, or progressive sampling made available to us by means of this drop down. Now of course, once we start rendering a scene using the controls found inside the Quick Settings dialogue, we are, by no means, locked into using whatever it provides to us. Should we reach a stage in our project where we feel that we need more control than the Quick Setting options offer to us, we can easily hit the Settings button here, and we will be taken straight to the relevant options inside 3ds Max's Render Setup dialogue.
Besides adding plenty in the way of features to V-Ray 3 then, Chaos Group have clearly been putting a lot of thought into making V-Ray both easier and quicker to work with. Especially so for users who really don't need or want access to all of the bells and whistles that the engine provides. In that respect, the V-Ray toolbar, the simplified UI controls, and the new Quick Settings dialogue are certainly all welcome additions.
- Using the new UI elements, Quick Settings, and revamped Frame Buffer
- Understanding color mapping modes
- Adding V-Ray light types
- Working with the V-Ray Sun and Sky systems and dome light
- Using irradiance mapping and light cache
- Working with diffuse color maps
- Making reflective materials
- Creating a translucency effect
- Using the new SSS and skin shaders
- Ensuring quality with image sampling
- Working with the adaptive subdivision engine
- Controlling the physical camera
- Working with FX tools such as VRayFur and VRayMetaball
- Stereoscopic 3D rendering
- Using Render Mask
Skill Level Intermediate
Q: This course was updated on 02/02/2016. What changed?
A: We added tutorials on the new 3ds Max camera tool, which replaces the defunct V-Ray Physical Camera. The author also includes a method for creating a V-Ray camera via scripting.
Q: This course was updated on 04/19/2018. What changed?
A: New videos were added that cover V-Ray 3.1 to 3.3 updates.