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3ds Max V-Ray
3ds Max V-Ray
General guide
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General workflow
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Maya Arnold
Modo Native
Modo Native
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3ds Max Corona
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Maya Redshift
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Maya V-Ray
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V-Ray standalone full workflow
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Redshift standalone (.rs)

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FAQ

3ds Max V-Ray

3ds Max V-Ray

Log in to Web Manager (web dashboard) at https://app.garagefarm.net and download our renderBeamer app for you operating system. 

3ds Max V-Ray
Web Manager downloads panel

Install the renderBeamer app and start it. Once renderBeamer is done with the installation process, you need to choose the default download directory. This path will be used as the main output place for all your renders. Next, just log in using the account ID you received or your account email. Please keep in mind that the app should always be running in the background whenever uploading a project or downloading rendered frames.

3ds Max V-Ray
renderBeamer startup windows - default download directory on the left, and login panel on the right

Once renderBeamer is installed and you’re logged in, you’ll see the Plugins panel. Plugins installation panel should automatically open after the first renderBeamer startup. You can also open it anytime you need to install additional plugins for your 3D apps.

3ds Max V-Ray
renderBeamer 3D app plugins installation panel

Here in the plugins panel, you can install plugins that allow you to work with our farm. Once you installed the plugin for your 3D app, you can proceed to the next step.

Note

Please keep in mind that each 3D app (DCC) you use needs to have a plugin installed to properly connect to and render on our farm. 

2. Prepare the scene (global setup for all 3ds Max render engines)

Open your scene in 3ds Max and prepare it for rendering on a render farm.

  • Set the right resolution, file format with output path and cameras to render.
  • Set required render range. You can select between all available options (single, active time segment, range or selected frames). If you are using multi-camera scene you can set different frame ranges for each camera in our plugin.
  • Make sure that your scene does not contain any missing assets and caches.
  • Animated textures – animation files (avi/mp4/etc) are not a valid option, also .mov files cannot be used. Please make it a frame sequence (jpg\png or so) and connect as an image sequence. You can use “.ifl” sequence in 3ds Max.
  • External plugins – we support quite a lot of 3ds Max plugins, however, if you are using some atypical add-on, we may need some time to run a test with the plugin & our network rendering system. Also, we check for plugins used in the scene and compare them with our system. In the case of we don’t support plugins, you will be informed about it automatically upon sending the project. You may also contact our support team via chat from your web manager.
  • Outputs – they need to be configured the same way as rendering on a local machine. This includes 3ds Max main output, V-Ray frame buffer, V-Ray RAW image, Corona & Mental Ray outputs and render elements.
  • Render region should be off, however, should you require it, you can turn it on and omit our plugin’s warning.
  • Multiple cameras in one scene – our plugin supports this setup for stills, camera animation and full animation
  • Scene name and output paths should not contain any non-standard system characters like / \ ” % # ? or language specific non-ASCII characters such as from the Cyrillic or Korean alphabet. If your scene contains such characters, it’s always best to change them. If our plugin detects any special characters, it will convert them to “_” including output paths.

Note

Each render engine operates on different render options and features. Therefore, our plugin opens an appropriate GUI for you based on the render engine selected as “Production”.

3. Use the plugin - setting the mode (V-Ray)

Once your project is prepared, please locate the renderBeamer menu and hit Beam it up to open the plugin window. In the plugin GUI you’ll need to finalize the scene setup using one of the available render modes: Render as is (Default); Still image /strips (Still shot); Irradiance animation (Animation pre-pass & rendering); Irradiance camera (Camera fly-through & rendering). Each render mode is specifically designed for a different kind of scene setup, so please make sure that you select a mode suitable for the type of scene you’re going to render. This is crucial because each mode uses different GI and render settings and so selecting an inadequate mode will result in incorrect rendering.

3ds Max V-Ray
Plugin UI for V-Ray render engine. On the top - mode selection box, in the middle - camera and render range setup, bottom - output and render settings

Plugin render modes for V-Ray render engine:

  • Render as is (Default) - In this mode, your scene renders "as it is". It's useful for scenes with already pre-cached GI or for shots which do not need GI caching. Also, it can be used for scene testing purposes or for atypical GI setups like Brute Force with Brute Force, or Brute Force with Light Cache. We do not provide any GI caching options in this mode. Render as is doesn't have any additional settings either.
  • Still image /strips (Still shot) - This is our custom distributed rendering system. It’s designed especially for high-resolution still shots. It works with all kinds of GI setups. Depending on which settings you choose, submitting your scene with this mode creates two or three jobs - GI cache, render and merge. If you already have pre-cached GI, you can turn off the bake switch, and connect your GI maps via the“from file” modes. They will be uploaded with your scene and used for rendering. Turning off bake will force our plugin to forward 2 jobs to the farm render queue - render and merge. When the bake switch is on you will receive 3 jobs - GI cache, render and merge. Still image /strips mode renders your scene with “strips” (horizontal or vertical render regions). After the strip render jobs are completed, strips are then stitched to one final resolution frame in a merge job. With “Still image /strips” mode, GI can be cached with all kinds of Irradiance maps and Light Cache combinations (like IR+LC, IR only, LC+LC, LC only and so on). GI setups like Brute Force + Brute Force cannot be cached. Please keep in mind that the usage of a non-cacheable GI setting sometimes can cause issues with GI rendering. For example, with BR+BR setup you can receive visible seams where the strips connect as each of the render nodes will be calculating GI from scratch when rendering the strip.
3ds Max V-Ray
Additional settings for “Still image /strips (Still shot)” mode
  • Irradiance animation (Animation pre-pass & rendering) - This mode should be used for fully animated scenes which include object animations, materials changes, camera or light movement. Generally, if your scene contains more than an animated camera, you should use Irradiance animation mode. Our plugin creates two jobs in this mode. The first one for the GI caching - called the "bake" scene. The second job is the rendering scene. The rendering scene uses pre-cached GI maps from the first job. With Irradiance animation mode, GI is cached for each frame in the selected render range so if your scene is starting at 0 and ending at frame 100, you will receive 101 GI map files. Each GI map is calculated on a separate node, so the process is very fast and stable. Irradiance animation mode works only with Irradiance map & Light Cache. Before using Irradiance animation mode please make sure that your GI setup is set to Irradiance Map & Light cache! Otherwise please use the “Render as is” mode. 

    Irradiance animation (Animation pre-pass & rendering) mode has some additional settings you can use - turn on/off Store direct light and set Interpolation frames (for GI caching/bake job). By default, Store direct light is always on. This kind of setup is recommended by Chaos Group. Turning it off will force V-Ray to save separate files for the Irradiance map and Light cache. Interpolation frames (by default set to 2) is an option for GI blending between frames. We strongly recommend leaving both settings at default values.
Additional settings for “Irradiance animation (Animation pre-pass & rendering)” mode
  • Irradiance camera (Camera fly-through & rendering) - This mode should be used for scenes where the camera is the only animated object. Irradiance camera mode works only with Irradiance map & Light Cache. Depending on which settings you choose, this mode will create 2 or 3 jobs - a GI cache, a merge and a render job. The first job is for the GI caching - called the "bake" scene. The GI cache is calculated using the selected "bake step" parameter. For the GI cache job, we switch your current Irradiance map mode type to “add to current map” and Light cache mode type to “flythrough”. For render jobs, we use both GI engines in the “from file” mode. GI caching is done using the bake step and bake jobs parameters. The default baking step value is 10, so if your scene is starting at 0 and ending at frame 100, you will receive 11 frames cached (including the first and last frame) into one .vrmap (Irradiance Map cache) file. Before using the Irradiance camera mode please make sure that your GI setup is set to Irradiance Map & Light cache! Otherwise please use the “Render as is” mode.

    GI (IR+LC) cache can be calculated using one of two methods - single node or multi-node. With a single node setup, GI will be calculated on one machine. With a multi-node setup, your frame range will be split over several render nodes. Each of the "split" jobs will be cached with the selected bake step parameter. So, for example, if your scene is starting at frame 0 and ending at frame 100, you can make GI cache with the bake jobs parameter at 5. Our plugin will create 5 GI caching jobs using the 0 to 100 range, and each of them will be cached with the selected bake step parameter. After successful GI caching with a multi-node setup, our software will merge the parts of the Irradiance map into one big file and use it for rendering. Multi-node GI caching setup is recommended for scenes with render ranges of more than 500 frames.

    Irradiance camera (Camera fly-through & rendering) mode has some additional settings. First, you can select between single and multi node GI caching. Next, you can set a baking step value. Please keep in mind that the baking step will be used as the scene timeline calculation step - but only for the GI caching job! Render step can be set directly in the camera settings boxes. You can also turn on and off the Store direct light switch.
3ds Max V-Ray
Additional settings for “Irradiance camera (Camera fly-through & rendering)” mode

Note

You should always run a test job first prior to rendering a full range animation or full resolution still image to check for potential issues and to get an estimated job cost. For animations, try to render a shorter range or use step. For still images, you should render a smaller resolution job (i.e. ⅕ res). This is a very important step to follow which will help you fully test the service without potentially overspending your credits. To get a preliminary cost estimation, use our Cost Calculator. While this is only a rough number and it shouldn’t replace the actual testing, it’s a quick way to get a cost and render time estimate for animations (it doesn’t work for stills).

You can read more about the importance of testing and ways to estimate the render cost and time in our FAQ.

4. Use the plugin – camera settings (V-Ray)

Once you selected the plugin mode, you can now continue the workflow to the second part of the setup window – the camera and frame range setup. When you have multi-camera scenes, you can set multiple frame ranges for each camera all at once. The same kind of workflow goes for Still Image mode. Each camera in the scene will be rendered as a separate render job including a GI caching procedure, scene rendering and merging job (applies to strip mode). If you want to test your scene, just put some render step value in the camera frame ranges. For example, if a scene timeline is 0 to 100 frames, you can test it by putting s10 at the end of time value – 0to100s10, thereby making the job render every 10th frame.Once the test is rendered, you can then resume the job to render full range in your web dashboard without the need to upload the scene again.

3ds Max V-Ray
Camera and range settings

Note

Our 3ds Max plugin automatically checks your scene’s time setting and will not allow you to put in any frame number other than the scene timeline. For example, if your timeline starts at frame 10, you won’t be able to input frame 0 in the plugin. Also, please keep in mind that Camera Animation mode with GI caching enabled will not allow you to change (or resume) the full range after the rendering. That’s because the GI is calculated for full range and it cannot be updated when re-rendering the scene with a different render frame range.

5. Use the plugin – render settings (V-Ray)

Once you set all your cameras and frame ranges, you can proceed to the last part of the plugin settings. This settings group is mostly a reflection of what you see in V-Ray settings plus output formats from the 3ds Max render setup.

3ds Max V-Ray
Render settings – universal for each render mode

Dynamic memory limit – This option allows you to set RAM utilization border for V-Ray geometry and pre-processing. By default, it’s set to 28GB (28000). We strongly suggest leaving this setting at a default value unless your scene is really big with tons of additional xrefs or V-Ray proxies.

Bucket size –It’s set to 32×32 by default. If you are using 4k+ resolution, you can increase the size of render buckets (to something like 64×64), but please keep in mind that if a scene contains a lot of reflection or refraction materials, and the bucket size is too big, some buckets may “hang” on calculating the most reflective (or transparent) objects. That’s why we strongly suggest leaving the 32×32 setting as buckets, with 32×32 size are the most common for 1080p and similar resolutions.

Use Frame Buffer / Use Raw Image / Use Split Channels – these 3 switches are just on/off settings for 3ds Max + V-Ray outputs. By default, Use Frame Buffer should always be turned on. That’s because when using V-Ray the main output,the image and format are saved from the V-Ray frame buffer and not the 3ds Max main output. You can use Use Raw Image to turn on the multi-layer exr (or .vrimg) saving option.The Use split channels switch works in conjunction with Use frame buffer. It forces V-Ray to save main outputs with its default setting – separated from the main RGB channel and Alpha.

Use camera path Irradiance map/Light Cache – This switch is just a reflection of the GI settings. Our plugin reads those switches from your current render setup, so if you don’t want to change them, just leave this setting as it is.

Below that you can select output formats for the V-Ray output and 3ds Max main output. By default, selection lists are off. That’s because plugin reads those settings and just forwards them with the scene. If you want to change your V-Ray or 3ds Max output format, you need to turn on Overwrite extension switch.

Please keep in mind that turning on “Overwrite extension” will force both outputs modules to save them in a default setup. So, for example. if you are using some internal settings for output (like TIFF48Bit with alpha or similar setups for .exr outputs) we strongly suggest leaving the “Overwrite extension” switch off. Otherwise, just turn it on and select something like “PNG” for V-Ray image file format and “JPG” for Max image file format.

V-Ray buffer gamma override – It’s off by default. This switch should be used ONLY if you need different gamma for V-Ray frame buffer and V-Ray RAW image outputs.

Below all the main output formats configurations you can find the V-Ray scene image file output. This selection list works along with the send .vrscene switch. You won’t be able to select output format from this list until send as .vrscene is on. This selection list is for rendering 3ds Max scenes as .vrscenes. You can do that by turning on the send as .vrscene switch. This option forces V-Ray to export the scene to V-Ray standalone. This can be used in various situations. For instance, when a 3ds Max scene is really big, or when most of the scene is compromised of V-Ray objects, or V-Ray proxies and similar solutions.More importantly, in most cases rendering a .vrscene (V-Ray standalone scene) is significantly faster than rendering a .max file.

Some of 3ds Max’s plugins may not be compatible with V-Ray standalone rendering. Especially plugins like scatters, or deformers/generators. Ideally, please change those kind of objects to geometry before using the “send as .vrscene” switch.

merge XRef – This switch works similarly to the 3ds Max “merge object” function. Once it’s on, it will force 3ds Max to merge all external objects into one scene. This switch can be used when your scene contains many external x-refs scenes in different directories and network paths. Also, using .max scenes with merged x-refs makes the rendering on the farm faster and more stable because there’s no need for loading & reloading those assets.

New project name – This option should be used only when you’re working on a new scene (with new assets) from the same project directory. Otherwise, please leave this switch OFF. With this switch inactive, our plugin will not reupload any previously uploaded assets linked to the project.

Our plugin automatically checks assets connected to the scene, so as long as you keep your scenes in one Project directory (e.g. C:\MyProject\Scene_1.max & \Scene_2.max and so on) your assets will be uploaded only once. If you move your .max scene to a parent folder – our plugin will treat it as new project and so will upload all assets as if they were new.

Once you’re done with the mode selection, camera range settings and render setup, just click the Send to farm button. Our plugin will create a temporary directory next to your .max file and will start preparing your project.It will then copy all connected assets and relink them. Due to some network drive limitations of Windows and copy/move/rename operations on them, we advise against using network drives. Next, our 3ds Max plugin will check the farm .dll list with what you have locally. If there are any incompatible .dlls (3ds Max plugins) you will see a prompt with Continue and Cancel options. If those missing plugins (.dlls) can be skipped, just continue with the process. If those missing plugins are crucial in your project (and are not installed on the farm), please contact us. After the complete project preparation process (depending on scene and assets size it can take several minutes) our 3ds Max plugin will redirect all data to the renderBeamer application which will take care of the file compression and upload processes.

6. Use the plugin – An overview of output settings (V-Ray)

There’s one rule you should remember – all outputs, settings, and file formats from 3ds Max Common tab, V-Ray Frame Buffer, and Render Elements settings are inherited by our plugin settings as well as the scene which is uploaded to the farm.

If you want to render the scene the same way as it is set up to render on your computer, just skip the ‘Render settings’ part of the plugin setup, select the render mode, frame range and cameras setup and click the Send to Farm button.

However, if you only want to change the output settings for the purpose of rendering on the farm, you don’t have to modify your scene’s settings every time. You can use our plugin output settings which will overwrite the settings of the scene you are uploading.

In the diagram below you can see how the scene’s output settings are inherited by our plugin.

3ds Max V-Ray

As you can see all output formats and V-Ray frame buffer options are inherited by the plugin settings and can be modified if desired.

Separate render channels is inherited by plugin’s Use Split Channels option
V-Ray raw image file is inherited by plugin’s Use Raw Image option
Enable built-in frame buffer is inherited by plugin’s Use Frame Buffer option

3ds Max main output format (from Common tab) is inherited by plugin’s Max image file format

V-Ray frame buffer output format (from Common tab) is inherited by plugin’s V-Ray image file format

Let’s take a look at several things you should keep in mind.

The behavior of 3ds Max and V-Ray Render Elements (even when you render on your computer):

  • If you haven’t set the output paths and formats for Render Elements in Render Elements tab or in V-Ray Frame Buffer\Split channels, they will be taken from from 3ds Max main output settings.
  • If you are using Render Elements and V-Ray frame buffer is turned on you need to also turn on either Separate render channels or Use raw image file option and set up the paths and formats for them. If you don’t, then the render elements won’t be rendered! (even on your computer).

The behavior of our plugin:

  • Please remember that in all cases the 3ds Max main output (from Common tab) must be turned on with a path and format set (even if you don’t want to use those frames). It is needed for technical reasons and our plugin won’t allow to upload the scene when it’s not turned on and properly configured.
  • Please note that Overwrite extension in plugin options will use default options for the chosen format (like TIFFs or PNGs bit depth setup or internal EXR render layers). If you want to render to such formats with custom options, you need to set the output format in your scene and don’t use Overwrite extension in plugin options.
  • If you are used to saving your RGB outputs and Render Elements manually from V-Ray or 3ds Max Frame Buffers, please note the farm doesn’t save the images this way. They are saved accordingly to the paths and formats set on 3ds Max Main Output \ V-ray Frame Buffer and Render Elements.

Please make sure that the frames render correctly on your computer with given setup before uploading a scene to the farm.

You can read more about various output setup scenarios in a scene and our plugin in the last chapter of this guide: Extra: Scene and plugin output settings (V-Ray)

7. Use the plugin - additional settings for 3ds Max plugin

Our plugin has additional settings that allow you to adjust your rendering workflow and experience.

To check and set your preferred settings for our 3ds Max plugin, you need to click the "Settings" button in the top right.

3ds Max V-Ray
Plugin settings - additional settings for 3ds Max plugin

In the settings window, you will find options such as:

  • Show confirmation prompt after preparing the scene - by default, this option is always turned on. When our plugin completes the process of preparing a project, it displays a prompt that the renderBeamer application has started uploading the project files.
3ds Max V-Ray3ds Max V-Ray

If you want the scene to reload automatically without being prompted everytime, turn off this option in the settings.

  • Upload original Max scene for Vrscene - this option refers to the “send as .vrscene” setting available in the plugin submit window (for projects with the 3ds Max + V-Ray setup). When enabled, our plugin will upload the .max file together with the .vrscene whenever “send as .vrscene” is used. By default, this option is disabled to skip the unnecessary transfer of a .max file.
  • Show scene state warning - this option refers to the scene setup using V-Ray. When you use “scene states” in your scene you always get a warning that the scene states feature is not supported and that it may cause errors when saving outputs (for Render Elements).
3ds Max V-Ray

If you want to disable this prompt, you can do it here by unchecking the box.

  • Render Stereo V-Ray as a separate job - when you use "V-Ray Stereo Camera" in the scene, by default our plugin splits the main view into two separate jobs - the left view and the right view. This setting allows you to render your project in an optimal way (each view on a separate node). If you need to get one main view from the stereo camera, without splitting it into two separate views, you need to uncheck the box.
  • Select .anipack file manually - by default, our plugin will automatically handle Anima assets and export the necessary files to .anipack, but in exceptional cases when such a workflow does not work automatically, it is recommended to enable this option. When enabled, in the process of collecting all the assets and preparing the scene for upload, our plugin will ask you to select the .anipack file which will be used to render the project.

8. Upload the project

Once our plugin completes the scene export, your project will be redirected to renderBeamer to be uploaded. renderBeamer is a standalone uploader/downloader application that works in conjunction with our plugins. Simply put, it takes care of the file transfers.

After the scene has been fully uploaded, the app will show you a window with a direct link to your scene on Web Manager (web dashboard). To continue just use click here to submit job button. If for some reason you closed the window with the link or it didn’t work, don’t worry, you can locate your project in the web dashboard and submit your scene by clicking on the scene file later (more on that in the next step). You can also copy link to clipboard and manually paste it into your web browser.

3ds Max V-Ray
renderBeamer window with options to add job to render farm

9. Submit the job & monitor render progress

Now that your project is uploaded you will need to follow the final step - creating and submitting a job to render farm. Web Manager is where all your projects and render jobs reside.

If you followed the link generated earlier by renderBeamer, you will now see the job submission window with several fields and settings. If you didn’t follow the link or it didn’t work, you can do it manually by locating your project in the Projects panel, finding the scene file within the project folder (in your folder structure look for the folder called “data”, i.e. Project_name/data/SceneName.max), and clicking on it to open the job window.

3ds Max V-Ray
adding a scene to rendering directly from Web Manager file browser

You can choose between three priorities when submitting a job: High, Medium, and Low (more info on Pricing page and FAQ page). You can also view the current queue on the farm, which should help you inform your decision about selecting the priority.

After giving your render settings a final check and choosing your preferred priority hit Submit to add your job to the render queue. If you’re a first time user, you will have received $25 worth of credit to test out our service. The credits should be enough to run a few test jobs and get you familiar with the service.

TIP

You can right click on the job to get additional options: change priority, pause job, kill job, and archive job.

Note

The estimate is based on the currently finished frames, and is an approximation at that point. Rendering a test as prompted in the plugin (using a step i.e. 1to100s10) is highly recommended for more accurate estimates and for detecting potential errors.

jobs added to render queue and options available under right mouse button

When the job has started rendering, you can check the real-time progress of currently processed frames. To do that, just select the render job from the main project list and then click the arrow on the top right side to open the progress panel.

Web Manager progress panel showing currently rendering frames

The progress panel will show its content only when any of the jobs is selected. The panel is divided into 3 sections.

Active frames - it shows currently rendering frames. When a frame finishes, it is moved to the second section Done frames. If you select any frame in the Done frames list, you can then access the render output process log in the bottom section called Process results.

TIP

When you’re in the Progress Panel and right-click on any of the currently rendering frames in the “Active frames” section, you can access the real-time render log from our nodes.

Note

Please keep in mind that if a job has finished rendering, the frames list in the “Active frames” section will be empty because all frames are already rendered and the list is moved to “Done frames”.

real-time render log from our node accessible in the “Active frames” section under RMB

10. Download and review frames

Each frame that has completed rendering is downloaded automatically to your local drive to a directory you selected in the renderBeamer application. If you’re not sure where your download folder is located, you can double check it or change it in renderBeamer’s settings (click on the cogwheel). Also, make sure you have auto download turned on to get the frames downloaded as soon as they are available. If this box is unchecked, you will have to click on each job in Beamer's "downloads" tab, and manually download the frames. 

renderBeamer default settings with auto download ON

If you prefer more control over what to download and when, you can also download your frames manually. To do that, just turn off auto download switch in renderBeamer settings and go to the “downloads” tab. Next, select the desired render output using a checkbox, and click the download button. 

renderBeamer downloading frames for a selected render job

This kind of workflow will download all rendered frames for the selected job or jobs. However, renderBeamer also gives you an option to download individual frames. To do that, you need to use the list files function under RMB. 

renderBeamer listing files option for selected render job

Once files for the selected job are listed, just roll down the list and select the files you’d like to download using checkboxes. Next, use the same download button.

renderBeamer downloading only selected frames from a render job

Once your frames are downloaded, you can use open directory option under RMB to open the folder where frames are saved. 

Note

Please make sure you keep renderBeamer running whenever you have jobs rendering to get the frames downloaded right away. It may happen, however, that your frames aren’t downloading in the given moment, and most likely that’s because our application checks for the files on the server in 15 minute cycles and it is currently in between the cycles. You can click refresh list to force the check without waiting for the next cycle.

11. Purchase credits

When you use up all your trial credits, you’ll need to charge your account to continue using the service. Please note that when your balance goes below $0, you won’t be able to download rendered frames or start new render jobs. You can make payments in the Billing panel in Web Manager. We accept debit cards, credit cards, PayPal and DotPay payments.

If your rendering needs are high or you plan to render regularly, please make sure to check out our volume discounts.

billing panel where you can buy credits, view cost & payment history, and view discounts

12. Contact us anytime

You can talk to the GarageFarm.NET’s tech team any time of the day, any day of the week. We’re here to help you get started, answer your questions, and assist you in any way. Don’t hesitate to give us a shout.

You can contact us through our live chat accessible in the web dashboard or our desktop app when you log in to your account or message us here through the guest chat.

We also recommend checking out our FAQ page which answers most of the questions new users have.

13. EXTRA: Scene and plugin output settings (V-Ray)

Here are some example scenarios that show how our plugin output options work.

CASE 1

Scene setup:

3ds Max main output: turned ON

V-Ray outputs: Enable built-in frame buffer: OFF / Separate render channels: OFF / V-Ray raw image file: OFF

Render Elements: ON – With NO paths and format set

Plugin’s Overwrite extension switch: Not used

That’s the default 3ds Max setup – with no V-Ray Frame Buffer options used.

Note

Leaving output settings empty in Render Elements is not a correct practice, but it sometimes happens that scenes sent to the farm are set like that.

  • V-Ray built-in frame buffer is turned off in the scene and wasn’t turned on in the Use Frame Buffer plugin settings, so all plugin output switches (Use Frame Buffer / Use Raw image / Use Split Channels) are turned off as well.
  • Render Elements are set without output path or extension, so they will take the path and extension from the 3ds Max main output settings.( This is how 3ds Max works )NOTE: If you will turn on Overwrite extension in our plugin and select a different extension from Max image file format drop down menu – it will change output format for both 3ds Max main output, and Render Elements!

In this case, the plugin takes the 3ds Max main output setting from the scene (it’s set to .JPG). Therefore, all files will render to .JPG

After complete rendering, output files will look like this:

As you can see, everything is rendered correctly – the same way as it was set in the scene before running the plugin.

Scene setup:

3ds Max main output: turned ON

V-Ray outputs: Enable built-in frame buffer: OFF / Separate render channels: OFF / V-Ray raw image file: OFF

Render Elements: ON – With paths and output format set

Plugin’s Overwrite extension switch: Not used

  • This setup example is pretty much the same as the previous one except Render Elements have the output path, and extension set in the scene. Because of that, they will be rendered with their path and format, and the settings won’t be taken from 3ds Max main output, as in the previous example.
  • All Render Elements are set to .TIFF format and 3ds Max main output is set to .JPG.
  • This setup will be saved and forwarded to the scene uploaded to the farm (unless you will use the plugin’s Overwrite extension switch, and change the output formats.)

However, if you use the Overwrite extension switch (and change the 3ds Max main output image file format to a different one – (PNG for example),it will also change the extension for Render Elements!

After complete rendering, the output files will look like this:

3ds Max main output renders to JPG, and Render Elements render to TIF as it was set in the scene.

CASE 3

Scene setup:

3ds Max main output: turned ON

V-Ray outputs: Enable built-in frame buffer:OFF / Separate render channels: OFF / V-Ray raw image file: OFF

Render Elements: ON – With paths and output format set.

Plugin’s Overwrite extension switch: Turned ON for 3ds Max main output.

In this scenario, 3ds Max Main Output setup and Render Elements render setup stays the same as in Case 2 example.

In this case, only the plugin output settings will be set in a different way – we will use the Overwrite extension switch in our plugin. With this setting used, the scene outputs formats will be overwritten with a new one (.TGA.)

To select a new format for 3ds Max main output, you need to use the Max image file format drop down menu.

Note

V-Ray built-in frame buffer is turned off, so overwriting 3ds Max main output image format, for example to TGA will also change the Render Elements output format – even if they are set in the scene to .TIF or .EXR.

That’s how Overwrite extension works – it’s overwriting current selection to a new one.

After complete rendering, the output files will look like this:

As you can see, everything was overwritten to our selected format – TGA in this case.

Please keep in mind that CASE 1 – 3 scenarios are “dedicated” to users who are not using V-Ray built-in frame buffer in any form – neither standard VFB with Separate render channels switch, nor Raw image file saving options.

CASE 4

Scene setup:

3ds Max main output: turned ON

V-Ray outputs: Enable built-in frame buffer: ON / Separate render channels: ON / V-Ray raw image file: OFF

Render Elements: ON – With paths and output format set.

Plugin’s Overwrite extension switch:Not used

This is the most common setup for rendering with 3ds Max and V-Ray Frame Buffer. All the standard outputs are turned on.

So, we’ve got 3ds Max main output set to JPG, V-Ray built-in frame buffer turned on and set to PNG with standard, correct setup in Separate render channels ( the output path and the format are set), and some Render Elements added with the format set to JPG

The plugin setup window should look like this:

As you can see, the plugin reads all current scene output settings. Use Frame Buffer option is turned on and the same thing goes for Use Split Channels. For V-Ray frame buffer file format, the output formats are already set to PNG and for 3ds Max main output format to .JPG.

Note

3ds Max main output is set to JPG, so Render Elements get set to JPG as well when you add new ones to the list in Render Elements tab. Eventually, they will render to PNG format which is set in V-Ray built-in frame buffer\Separate render channels.

Since the Overwrite extension option in plugin’s settings isn’t used, the output formats will render as set in the scene.

So, we got the 3ds max main output rendered to JPG and the rest of the outputs (including Render Elements) to PNG.

CASE 5

Scene setup:

3ds Max main output: turned ON

V-Ray outputs: Enable built-in frame buffer: ON / Separate render channels: ON / V-Ray raw image file: ON

Render Elements: ON – With output paths and format set

Plugin’s Overwrite extension switch:Used on 3ds Max main output and on V-Ray built-in frame buffer output

This is yet another type of standard render output settings.

In this example 3ds Max main output is set to JPG, V-Ray built-in frame buffer is turned on with all options set – Separate render channels is set to PNG and Use raw image file to EXR.

Render Elements – which are set like in Case 4 example – are set along with 3ds Max main output to JPG, but in “real world” – the output settings are controlled by V-Ray frame buffer output format.

In this case, we want to get all the outputs in the same format, let’s say we want TIFs everywhere + additional output with RAW (EXR).

As you can see, we are using overwrite extension (to .TIF) in both outputs – 3ds Max main output & V-Ray frame buffer.

That type of setting will give us the certainty that all outputs are rendered to selected TIF in this case. Also, Use Raw Image is used and it will render to the format you have selected in your V-Ray Raw Image settings.

The scene has V-Ray Raw image output configured already, and we won’t overwrite it – even when the overwrite plugin option is turned on. V-Ray RAW buffer is more complicated, so we decided to not add an overwrite option to it.

After complete rendering you should receive files like this:

As you can see, we got all 3ds Max and V-Ray outputs saved as TIF and one additional output from V-Ray raw image file – EXR.

3ds Max V-Ray
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