Finally an image I feel confident posting in the finished projects section. :smiley:

This is my entry for this weeks weekend challenge #753, themed “80´s technology”.
I titled it “Bandsalat” - The German word for a chewed up tape.
One thing I remember very well form the pre digital age are compact cassettes, used both for playing music and storing computer games. - The goal was to go as photoreal as possible with this.

I modeled the cassette in Fusion 360 but spent ten times more time working in Blender to get the scene, materials and lighting right. ^^

Rendertime with a 1060 and 750Ti card combined was about two hours for the 3000x2000px image with 1000 samples. I skipped the denoising, since I felt the noise would add to the vintage look of the rendering. Post and color adjustments were done in Affinity Photo & Photoshop.

Comments and critique are of course welcome.


Great job! Congratulations !

wow stuning! congrats

Hey DM9, really awesome entry, you should setup a gallery of all your works! Also you only rendered at 100 samples? I don’t see how that is possible, when I render at 100 samples it looks very grainy and poor, I have to do 1k+ to even get remotely decent… But looking at your post again you say the dimensions were 3k so is it that you can render at a lower sample and just scale the image down? The image looks very clean and well rendered for just 100 samples… I must figure this out.

Hey Rob, did I miss to put a zero somewhere? - It was in fact 1000 samples for the rendering. The image was still a bit noisy with that amount of samples, but I thought it would help to achieve a bit of a grainy 80s analog photography look in this case. At some point in the post work I used photoshops “remove noise” filter on an additional layer to smooth some parts of the image out a bit, where I thought the noise was too sharp.

This looks incredibly realistic! I’m very amazed at how good this looks. I feel like I shouldn’t point this out but as it might help you, I’ll say it. Actually, if memory serves me right, I remember that black tape that comes out of the cassettes used to be a lot shinier than that. It was actually very shiny!

What’s this? (tries to hide age)
Great job on every aspect! Congrats.

You can do a caustics pass with YafaRay and compose it with the cycles render to give the scene more interest and realism. Not only ray passing through plastic (IOR = 1,46) but also rays reflected by the shinny tape can be considered as a refractive event. Caustics will tend to be in the most upper part of the histogram with little contrast in within.

Really nice image, shaders are top notch! Great work!

what do you do exactly to make such realistic lighting

Thanks for all the feedback. :smiley:
@alf0, there is actually nothing special to the lighting, in fact it turned out bloody simple for this scene. ^^ … All it is is a sun turned towards the tapes from the left and a very dim HDRI at 0,1 to give some fill light and reflections. - I established some basic shaders, defined the lighting and then tweaked the shaders “endlessly” until the preview rendering looked right.

Edit: Color management is set to Filmic, Exposure 0, Gamma 1, Base Contrast, No curves.

What kind of interface?

I guess you are asking about the user interface in the screenshot?
This is BforArtists, a visual UI centered Blender fork. You can find more info on their website >>>

What a reminiscence! I remember the days when I saved my BASIC programs on cassettes. :slight_smile:

Really enjoy how simple this scene is. I love the textures on the cassette tape.

Really good job.

Nice, looks almost identical to a photo. I also wonder if that barely-visible background pencil is a subtle nod to how the tape is going to get back in? :cool: