Just got a look at 2009... looks like it has some nice features that I could use... Getting a price to update/renew my subscription (ouch)... Also got a look at the renderer from Luxology. Gotta' say, not impressed. As I "saw" it, other than assigning materials to objects/faces there wasn't much else you could do. No lights, no cameras (the only available is what's already there). Only the "scenes" built in for backgrounds... Frankly it looks like a "renderer for people that don't need a renderer"...
By purCAB
Respectively, I have to disagree with mtripoli. Not that what he says isn't true -- minimal/no control of lights, camera, environment, materials, etc. -- it is his conclusion that it's a "renderer for people that don't need a renderer" where I disagree.

Recently, we had a client, who had a client, that needed to submit some renders of a couple of their products (each from three angles...6 renders in total) for a publication. Oh, and by the way, the publication needed them in less than 48 hours. On our hardware, these renders would take a minimum of 12 to 18 hours each under Maxwell so that wasn't going to be workable. The alternative of course was PhotoWorks, but I've never figured out how to get it to render in any reliable and predictable way, so I felt that (for us) it would lead to a non-usable result and would therefore be a waste of time. (There are, no doubt, those that would be very capable of getting PhotoWorks to run in a decent way, I'm just not one of those people). That left us with trying the newly distributed PhotoView-360 Luxology product.

Was it as good, flexible, robust, etc. as Maxwell? No, but what I was able to do, was to get good quality, medium resolution (2,400 x 2,400) renders, that met the clients visual requirements, and more importantly met the timeframe. At less than 120 minutes per final render and less than 30 minutes for a test render, I was able to show the client the initial direction, have them make some color, texture, and angle changes and still process the overall job.

If we had a dedicated render farm, then certainly we could have accomplished this (and more) with Maxwell, but at this time, we do not and this is the point. Currently, as everyone in this forum is aware, unless you have either the raw horsepower or the luxury of time, Maxwell's achilles heel is its rendering speed. There is no Maxwellian notion of render compromise. There really isn't a test mode (although on occasion I have tried using R0). Simply stopping the render at SL 8 or 10 or even 12 doesn't really portray the way the render will look at SL 18 or SL 20.

So is PhotoView-360 a Maxwell killer -- clearly not. Is it competitive with Maxwell in terms of flexibility, features, ultimate quality -- not even close. But, is it something that one can take advantage of when the conditions warrant -- I think so. At least until Maxwell improves its render speed by an order of magnitude; offers an alternative rendering solution; or until we get that 64 core render farm...none of which seem likely in the near future.


By mtripoli
Everything that Ken said is true. I may have "over-simplified" my take on Photoview. Let me re-phrase what I said.

My impression was based largely on what I saw at the seminar. For the most part the guys in attendence were asking many more questions about new features to the drawings side of things than the solid modeling side of things (I'm guessing because I'm in the heart of airplane manufacturing - Wichita, Kansas). The features that really caught my eye they seemed to care less about.

Once it got to discussing Photoview you would have thought they were showing Black Magic. The common response was "So all I have to do is choose a "studio", drag the material on an object and it makes an image"? The ability (or non-ability) to have more than one camera. control of lights etc. didn't matter to these guys. Hence my "a renderer for people that don't need a renderer". I will be the first to admit, until recently (the last 6 months or so) if I needed a quick render I would output the SW assembly as an LWO object, bring it into Lightwave and render using the Lightwave renderer. I got great results quickly that the customer could appreciate. Now that I've taken a "regular" 9-5 job I don't have to do that anymore. I work on my own projects and have the luxury of setting up a Maxwell render and walking away for a day or two (though I've only ever rendered over night truth be told).

Photoview does create very nice renderings for what it does. :D
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By w i l l
Teaming up with Luxology for me means future organic modelling (i predict). And thats good.
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