Should Blender switch to SunFlow?

(5_on_it) #1

I know that YafRay has been a tried and trusted friend of Blender for a long time, but the development of Yafray seems to be in Limbo. It also seems that the development of Yaf(a)Ray seems to be… well… I don’t know. I would love to see YafRay grow with Blender as much as anyone else, but there comes a time when the Blender community needs to move forward with something that has more regular updates.

I picked SunFlow because it seems to be a close cousin of Yafray. It’s opensource, supports things like HDR lighting, particles and the renders it produces are amazing. Some on par with unbiased render engines like Indigo. Although if you think another opensoucrce renderer would fit the bill, I would love to hear about it.

Note: I’m not trying to start a flame war and a bunch of arguments on here. I’m just interested in what everyone else is thinking about the matter. If you think switching away from YafRay is a bad idea, by all means, tell me why you think I’m wrong.

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(Joel_nl) #2

from what i’ve read, the new render api will make it possible to include outside renderers much better then currently possible.
so i think after the 2.50 release we’ll be able to pick from a large numbers of renderers.

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(CubOfJudahsLion) #3

I don’t see a reason why this should rise a flame war. We all loved Yafray and its little brother, but yes, maybe it’s time to ask ourselves this very reasonable question.

Ideally, with the rendering API, this should not be an issue any longer – one should be able to write plugins to link any renderer whatsoever to Blender. Once this is done animation in alternate engines becomes practical. Sunflow, Kerkythea (my personal favorite), Aqsis (Renderman adapter middleware, anyone?), Indigo, Toxic – they all become choices.

Now let the change-resistant zealotry begin…

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(Hippie) #4

I think the more choices the better. I don’t see why yafray should be abandoned, but it would be nice, if there were a couple of more options for renderers besides it.

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(oogsnoepje) #5

Anyone who’s seen the recent improvements of Yaf(a)ray would keep their mouth wide shut (which I don’t mean in a bad way, rather friendly :)) about abandoning it.

Matthias is doing an awesome job on making Yafray the renderer it should have been!

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(Cognis) #6

I agree with Hippie. We can choose between Internal and Yafray right now. Nothing wrong with simply a third choice.

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(Rinne) #7

Yea, I’s not that we can’t have more than 2 renderers…

I still have an older version of Yaf(a)ray, because I’m too lazy to compile a new one, but that is still very powerful if you use it right…

and it’s fast :slight_smile:

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(CubOfJudahsLion) #8

Ah, there’s the predicted rub. :slight_smile: A bit rude, don’t you think? And no, the “rather friendly” bit at the end is not working.

My man, noooo ooooone means to demerit the job by the Yafray folks, and if you care to read the previous posts, you will find respect towards their efforts. Still, we gotta keep moving forward. Like everything else in this world, Blender and Yafray have shortcomings and CGI keeps moving forward. You gotta address these issues, improve and change.

Besides, isn’t OpenSource about choice?

One can appreciate your efforts to defend Blender’s UI and Yafray, but you gotta question whether such a stringent defense is actually useful. Change is all-pervading, and constant re-adaptation is a necessity.

I still have an older version of Yaf(a)ray, because I’m too lazy to compile a new one, but that is still very powerful if you use it right…

Speaking of which, and excuse my ignorance, why isn’t Yaf(a)ray developed as a drop-in replacement for Yafray and precompiled binaries offered? I know that would get me to try.

I’m a software dude, but I’m pretty lazy when it comes to compiling. I just don’t see myself trying to guess all of the dependencies, and I don’t have time for that these days anyway. I also bring bread to the table through Blender. The stupid ugly ship? That’s my day job.

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(Gustav Göransson) #9

I would say no. At the moment Sunflow is making very little progress. And far from a “production ready” renderer although you get very impressive results… I think the most logical thing would be to remove Yafray (since it’s old and not being developed) and have acess to all the other renderers (Sunflow, Yaf(a)ray, Aqsis etc…) through new render export api thats being developed…

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(Joel_nl) #10

geez… people really dont read other reply’s do they ? :stuck_out_tongue: :eyebrowlift2:

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(Myke) #11

What keeps you from using sunflow with Blender? It is true, Yafray is neatly integrated into Blender and does support most of the features in Blender but nevertheless, there already EXIST many other choices with good, well developed exporters (Indigo, Kerkythea)…they are so usable that I myself, as an old Yafray fan, am using them currently much more than Yafray.
So, what I’m asking is: what kind of switch do you mean? A better integration into Blender? If so, it’s a nice idea but I’d not like to see Yafray removed…

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(daredemo) #12

my choise of renderer: pixie

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(CubOfJudahsLion) #13

It’s pretty good.

None of the posters who suggested adding alternatives, including the first poster, said anything about removing Yafray. We’re getting too much of a reaction for considering a purley constructive addition.

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(TweakingKnobs) #14

yes it would be cool if in the renderer tab yaf(a)ray , kerkythea and indigo would be tightly integrated like yafray.

anyway its not ·“too” much effort to use indigo and kerkythe via scpits , installing folders in C , moving files from one folder to another , try if what you did is right.

well yes its a bit time consuming , so it would be cool if at least indigo and kerkythea would be another choice in the renderer tab.

By the way , in case you didnt know i just find out , blender can export an avi with audio !

http://blenderartists.org/forum/showthread.php?t=106661

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(Rinne) #15

probably because the old Yafray interface is still available in Blender, but useless at the time Yaf(a)ray support is added. So it would require deeper UI changes for Blender, but as far as i know no Blender programmer is in touch with Yaf(a)ray, and if a new render API is coming soon, it isn’t worth it.

The current Yaf(a)ray implementation is very improvised.

The way the initial post is written does very much sound like replacing Yafray with Sunflow, and the Headline is should Blender switch to Sunflow?

It would make sense to finally replace Yafray with Yaf(a)ray, though, as it is its predecessor

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(daredemo) #16

I think 2 out of 3 in that list are not supported on all platforms [especially Mac], which would make me at least vocally protest against it unless at least pixie is added too.

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(masterhoshi) #17

I like the idea of adding or replacing yafray with yaf(a)ray. If it’s not available on all platforms it’s tough for us Mac people and lInux people to get behind.

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(Felix Kütt) #18

indeed…! :frowning:

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(mattebb) #19

The eventual plan is for the hard-coded yafray export support to be removed from Blender entirely and replaced by the plugin system of the render API, which should provide equal capability to make exporters for any renderer. The current way that yafray is integrated works, but it’s not sustainable, particularly with multiple different renderers, and no further work will be done down this path.

Unfortunately after the Google summer of code finished, there has been no further work on the render API project and it seems to be stalled. I really hope the original coder or even someone else can continue work on this, since it’s very well needed.

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(oogsnoepje) #20

I pity you for having such a shortsighted vision :ba:

(Which can also be read in a rude or more friendly way. I guess you’ll do the former. You know, when words are written down, they can give one a totally different feeling of what was meant originally. Not everyone that writes fuck or moron to you is “super serial” about it!)

And on a more serious note, I agree with you that open source is about choice as well, but fragmentation resulting in many “pet projects” (meaning: renderers that get developed for a year or two and are totally abandoned after that period because the student needs food on the table) is a bad thing.

Everyone and their cat is trying to write their own version of some specific software these days. I can fully understand that (been there done that got the t-shirt!), but in the end, what do you think is better: 10 renderers, each supporting a specific feature, or just 1 or 2 renderers with all those features nicely integrated, and above all more production stable as well? (more people working on it to fix bugs, less different code bases with multiple ways of doing the same things = more stability)

That, and the fact that Yaf(a)ray is not written in Java (Sunflow is great but Java is and will always take more memory) makes me a supporter of Yaf(a)ray and I can only hope that more people will someday come to the same conclusion, that supporting one project with more devs is much better than doing it all for themselves.
(and to be honest, if I had time to spare, I would even go and help Matthias myself to get Yaf(a)ray in a more ready state sooner)

Look at it this way: would write a replacing program for Blender and thus “add more choice”, just because it doesn’t support this or that feature you need and it’s currently not possible to extend Blender easily the way you want it?
(please keep in mind that the original poster of this thread said that he thought Blender should switch away from Yafray, that’s why I’m making this analogy)

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