I thought I would answer an honest rendering service question from a separate thread that is rather flame-laden at the moment and at the same time start a discussion about rendering services in general. Hopefully this one can stay flame-free and technically-oriented.
Please note that I am pointedly avoiding making this a ResPower-specific thread, although I can obviously only field questions related to ResPower or make comments based upon my competitors’ websites. Competitors, feel free to join in, but for the good of the community, let’s please try not to make this into a marketing battle - i.e., let’s try to keep it to answering other posters’ questions and on a wholly technical level.
It’s pure rendering at the moment.
The primary gain is that as long as your frames finish in the alotted time frame based on your subscription level (15,30,or 60 minutes), you can do a lot more frames in the same amount of time. What we do is give each computer one frame. Since there are so many computers all crunching at one time, they all finish that much faster. So if your frames finish in 15 minutes a piece, you can do roughly 700 frames in 15 minutes. Which algorithm you use (AO/radiosity/etc…) is essentially irrelevant once you optimize your scene to fit in the subscription level limits.
Nope. But we may incorporate them soon, time allowing.
We’ll definitely have to focus on doing something about this. Unfortunately, fluid sims are notoriously hard to parallelize, since the initial state of each frame is the ending state of the prior frame. However, there are ways to speed up individual frames’ baking - we’ll try to schedule some time to look into it when we work on making it where you can even render an already-baked fluid.
– Early Ehlinger, President, ResPower, Inc.