Sketchup for Interior Design books

Sketchup for Interior Design books
Now Sketchup 2013 for Interior Designers

Friday, March 16, 2012

Five Rendering Plugins Comparison. Part 2

I want to thank everyone who voted for an image and somehow helped me with this post.

Many are the renderings plugins offered.
All have advantages and disadvantages. It is possible that those who have used one in particular have been pleased with the results.
Very different was the experience to start from the same model, interact with each plugin, and put the results next to each other. The approach of this post will probably have many diverse opinions as each professional is looking for a different scope when it comes to creating a rendering.

For the curious, the result of the survey resulted in a tie between the 3 images on the right. In order from top to bottom - Lightup, Shaderlight and Kerkythea. The two on the left correspond to SuPodium and Maxwell. Due to the dissimilarity of methods used by each of these plugins, I have decided to base my comments on a common theme when choosing Sketchup as design platform; primarily people use SketchUp because it is fast and easy. Although this analysis included biased and unbiased rendering methods I started with the assumption that the resulting images did not seek to reproduce the real world outcome but rather that they had an acceptable result in a short time.

Unbiased rendering refers to a rendering technique that does not introduce any systematic error or bias. However, a biased rendering method can still converge to the correct answer if the estimator is consistent. Unbiased rendering method therefore requires much more time on mathematical calculations, and are often used by professionals with high demands on lighting and definition. Using the unbiased method to generate a rendering in a short time invariably shows a lot of noise in the image.

In addition to these variables, this is a summary table of the variables we analyzed. I hope this helps in deciding which is the one that most fits your requirements.

SU podium
Rendering method
Biased. Ambient Oclussion for interiors
Biased. Interior scenes use Global illumination
Biased. Progressive ray-tracer and interior scenes use GI
Biased and Unbiased
Types of artficial lights
Area Lights, Points Lights, IES files
LEM, Omni light, Spot light
Point light, Spot light, area light, sky portal, IES files
Emitting materials, IES files
Inside Sketchup Point light and spotlight. Inside Kerkythea: IES light  and projector light
Material can be modified over the rendered image. Allows adjust, bump (map), specular(map), Reflections (fresnel), rugosity, IOR, with presets, animation of texture and color
Allows Difusse, Transparency, Reflection, Refraction(presets) Bump depth, Ligth Power
Allows settings Auto, Matt, Satin,Shiny, Glossy, Metal, Transparent, Traslucent, Self Illuminating. Every material has differents types of finish
Allows settings: Automatic, Plastic, Lacquer, Car Paint, Metal; liquid, Glass, AGS, SSS; Satin, Velvet, Complex IOR, Emitter, HDR Image, IES file. Each material has different parameters tos et. Allow to load their own materials in SU
Allow to import materials from the Kerkythea library. Materials editing is done in Kerkythea not in SU.
Max. Resolution
7014x 4919
Up to 16000x16000 px.
1920 px, 800 px in demo
Still (TIF), Cubic (TGA, JPG), Video(AVI), (FBX,TIF,TGA), LighUP Player(.LUCA)
png,jpg, hdr
bmp, png, exr, hdr, jpg, tga, tif
bmp, tga, jpg, png, tif, jpg2, ppm, bpm, pmg, hdr, exr
Image correction
Don’t allow
Don’t allow
Don’t allow
Don’t allow
Don’t allow
Learning curve
Very easy
Very easy
Very easy
Learning resources
Short manual breve and tutorial videos online (1 hour)
Short manual and tutorial videos online.(50 min.aprox.)
Extensive manual and tutorial videos online.(1 hour aprox.)
Extensive manual and tutorial videos online.(1 hour 15 m aprox.)
Manual and tutorial videos online.
$ 189
$ 198
$ 299
$ 95
Scene adjustment time (lights and materials)
1 hour
1 hour
1,5 hours
2 hours
2,5 hours
Final rendering time
11m 17s (with resolution of  5mm)
1m 8 s (interior high)
10m 15s High Quality
1h 30m aceptable quality, still with noise. 3h good quality
17m (photon map high), 1h 30m aceptable quality (Metropolis), 2h 30m good quality (Metropolis)

Monday, March 5, 2012

Five Rendering Plugins Comparison

These 5 renderings were made with 5 different plugins using the same scene in SketchUp. I would love to receive feedback from you which one do you like more and if you dare, guess which plugins were used for each of the 5 images. Your feedback will help me with my next post.