Subject says it all…
I should have called it “YARWABES” (guess what that stands for … ) but I’m going with “Radium” for the time being.
It will ALWAYS remain free and maybe, at some point in the future, open-source (when I’m happy with the state of the code which, knowing me, will be “never” … joking).
I’ve been working on this on and off for the last year or so and, due to various circumstance, I’ve had a fair bit of time to polish up the main render engine and GUI in the past few weeks.
The main focuses (foci?) of this renderer are:
- Easy navigation and preview of the scene in real-time (constantly updating tiled view, Blender-like viewpoint control, solid and “real” preview modes etc. etc.)
- Complete control of every parameter, material, object, light-source through an Explorer-like interface.
- Progressive rendering using path tracing, plus configurable bias settings to merge path tracing results and more conventional ray tracing methods in the same image. Support for multi-processor and basic support for multi-machine rendering.
Needless to say, it ticks all the usual boxes such as HDRI, texture mapping, bump mapping, procedural textures, arbitrary combination of shaders, basic primitives (sphere, box, square, disc, torus, cone, cylinder), UV-mapped triangle meshes with smooth normals etc. etc. No point me repeating a long list of features already supported by every renderer that you’re all already familiar with.
Internally it can do a great job of rendering GI with photons but I’ve disabled photons at the moment. I’ve come to the conclusion that they’re are a pain to use and many hours fiddling about with irradiance cache settings, shadow refinement etc. can be much better used for fnal rendering. I want to stick with a “fire and forget” philosophy, which means … tweaking materials -> seeing what they look like in real time -> positioning the camera -> setting up the lights -> start final render -> go to bed -> wake up -> inspect results
You might already have seen a couple of images I’ve produced recently on the Contests forum (see “IT Department” and the original “Renderer Challenge” threads).
Here’s a link to a movie that shows off the real-time preview and object/material/shader/image browser as they stand at the moment.
www.trackvids.co.uk/radium_movie01.avi (21Mb … please “Save Target As…” before viewing)
Here are some links to various screenshots…
I would really appreciate a few volunteers to help with 3 phases of initial testing, likely to start within a fortnight or so…
1 - Manipulation of preview scene (with a view to seeing how the GUI looks and operates on different OS’s)
2 - Using the material editor and associated previewer
3 - Using in conjunction with Blender (I have an export script at the moment but it needs more work)
I’ve also previously implemented and tested a scene previewer using Java 3D (getting close to 40fps even with complex scenes) but I’ve disabled it at the moment. I’ve recently moved to a WinXP64 development platform and, unfortunately, Java3D doesn’t work on 64 bit yet (but I’ve been told the next version, due this month, will). This is a VERY cool feature and was worth the many, many days figuring out how to convert my internal scene data into a J3D Universe.
I’ve also developed a textual scene description language that is not disimilar to POV-Ray’s (i.e. procedural and turing-complete) but easier to learn and use (IMHO). Creating a test scene with bump-mapped and texture-mapped primitives takes a matter of a couple of minutes armed only with Notepad.exe.
Please feel free PM me or reply on here if you’re interested. Hope to get at least a couple of guys willing to thrash the hell out of this thing to find the (doubtless numerous) bugs …
Thanks very much in advance for any volunteers and finally … special credit to Christopher Kulla (fpsunflower, author of the excellent Sunflow renderer) who has done some sterling work on KD-Trees, so rather than re-inventing the wheel, I based my kd-tree on his
If anyone wants to suggest other forums this might be usefully posted on, that would be cool.