Corona Renderer

Hi odil24,

I’m really happy to hear about your project. I’m struggeling with the “cartoon” render cycles for years now. Filmic is bad too. In my opinion, it is very hard, even impossible to render a photorealistic interior with cycles. I spent too many hours doing R&D for shaders, the tonemapping curve and trying alternatives like luxcore and octane. The results or the usability have never been satisfiying. A few weeks ago I tested fstorm and I was blown away, how easy photorealism can be. But fstorm has its limitations, too. Regarding the many stunning Corona interiors I saw and the features it has, it is the best of both worlds, photorealism and production readiness.
So I want to encourage you to keep doing this.


It’s possible. Just render to exr and use Corona Image Editor as tonemapper ) WIthout tonemapping cycles and corona gives pretty similar results in terms or lighting.


I cannot agree with you, I tried once with one project I made for a client, and after all these renders weren’t so good as these made Using Corona

These renders were made using Cycles

And these using Corona


I think I had done the right things in blender. The output of the Corona image editor looks pretty close to mine, or the other way round.
Ok, lets say, you can crank the settings of blenders tonemapper to behave like the normal behavior of corona image editor. I don’t think that a rendering in cycles looks the same as in corona. I know too many things in cycles, which do not behave as I expected, color and reflection on high glossy plastic, to name a few. I have a photographic background and I don’t know corona, but I haven’t achieved and haven’t seen any top notch photorealistic results in cycles. On the other handy, the web is full of corona renderings which feel real. The grass is always greener on the other side, I know, but I really would like to test it.

Don’t crack the settings of blender tonemapper to look like Corona tonemapper. Use Corona tonemapper instead. It can be fed with regular exr file (not multilayer one) CyclesX, Corona Image Editor, Photoshop:

I did a test of lighting once, not touching the reflections etc, just the light. And the raw output of corona, cycles and luxcore with pathtracing (not bidir) are similar. You can easily repeat it yourself and compare.

Haven’t seen doesn’t mean there’s no any.

Corona wins with memory consumpsion (at least in 3dsmax vs Blender in needs half of system memory used for the same scene) and some features, like caustic solver. BUt the overall lighting is the same.


Are these raw images in both cases? I don’t think so. Please read my message once again, with the special attention to phrase “without tonemapping”.

1 Like

As @suomi say, lighting should be the very similar in both engines, because they use similar equation and they tend to the same output - achieving physical plausible light.

(renders by Sebastian Zapata, source)

In my opinion it’s not about why Corona has better results - it is a false assumption. It is question why there’s more photorealistic works in Corona than in Cycles.
With Corona it is easier to achieve photorealistic results - there’s easy and fast tonemapper, realistic bloom and glare, more built-in features (ready-made materials, thin glass, camera vertical guess, triplanar, light groups, light linking, better displacement, caustics, proxies). There’s also more community and content for that specific area which is archviz - we’ve got maxtree, more tutorials etc.
Besides that Cycles is an engine made primarily for animations and Corona for static images (mainly architectural visualizations) so the development is also different.

There was some tests to compare engines (this and this).
If somone would made for comparison the same exterior scene for Corona and Cycles with better results in Corona - then we should talk about the quality of Cycles.


Is there a way to achieve this without having to buy corona? I have photoshop and affinity photo. My usual workflow is to export from Blender in exr and tonemap in Affinity Photo with this macro.
Maybe you know of a way to achieve Corona’s tonemapping in 3rd party software?

afaik, corona 3 is free

I agree and respecting all of your opinions. And I say you just one thing: “Do what you can do more than other method!”. There are no problem not with Corona not with Cycles not with LuxCore not with Octane or some other engines. Just love what you can do as best you can. Thats it! Hope you are very well with my words ))

1 Like


This is good info. Perhaps rather than asking for “Corona for Blender” perhaps instead we should be asking for “Corona Render features for Cycles X” instead. It seems like Corona’s Tone Mapper and Light linking and other post tools are really what makes Corona renders stand apart. The LightMixer alone is just so nice and a real time saver for tweaking that final output.

I think I read that Blender 3.1 is looking to have in-3dviewport realtime compositing too. Does Corona have this ability?

No, it doesn’t.


Added: new Corona Transparent Shader. E.g.: For alpha-masked transparented textures.

I created Patreon page for contiously developing of Corona Renderer for Blender.
Hope you checkout and will be my donator on my Patreon page :wink: