Quicksilver Hardware Renderer
 
 
 
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Main toolbar (Render Setup) Render Setup dialog Common panel Assign Renderer rollout Choose Quicksilver Hardware Renderer as the active production renderer. Renderer panel Quicksilver Hardware Renderer Parameters rollout

The Quicksilver hardware renderer uses graphics hardware to generate renderings.

One advantage of the Quicksilver hardware renderer is its speed. The default settings provide rapid rendering. You can also increase the quality for more polished results.

Hardware rendering with default (draft) settings

Scanline rendering of the same scene, for comparison

Hardware rendering with hardware sampling increased to 8x

ImportantTo use the Quicksilver hardware renderer, your graphics hardware must support Shader Model 3.0 (SM3.0) or a later version.

If you aren’t sure what graphics hardware you have, in 3ds Max choose Help Diagnose Video Hardware. This displays a dialog with details about your graphics configuration, including GPU Shader Model Support, which shows the Shader Model version number.

Supported Materials, Maps and Shaders, and Features

The Quicksilver hardware renderer supports the following materials:

The Quicksilver renderer also supports the following maps and shaders:

The Quicksilver hardware renderer supports rendering elements separately. It does not support Render to Texture.

Interface

Image Precision (Antialiasing) group

These controls set the level of sampling used to calculate antialiasing. Higher levels give smoother results, at a cost of some render time.

Hardware Based Sampling

Sets the level of edge-based sampling performed by the graphics hardware. Default = None (Draft).

  • None (Draft)
  • 2x
  • 4x
  • 8x
Software Based Sampling

Sets the level of per-pixel sampling performed by the software component of the renderer. Increasing this value is helpful when you render texture maps. Default = None (Draft)

  • None (Draft)
  • 4x
  • 16x
Resulting Sampling Value

Displays the level of sampling obtained from hardware and software methods combined.

Lighting group

These controls let you choose how the renderer handles lighting.

Illuminate with

Choose how the rendering is illuminated: with Scene Lights or Default Lights (that is, viewport lighting). Default = Scene Lights.

  • ShadowsWhen on, the scene is rendered with shadows. Default=on.
Soft Shadows Precision (Multiplier)

Scales the sampling value of area lights in the scene. Default=1.

Ambient Occlusion

When on, enables ambient occlusion (AO). AO improves shadow quality by taking into account the proximity of objects. When AO is enabled, the controls for it become available. Default=off.

  • Intensity/FadeControls the intensity of the AO effect. The higher the value, the darker the shadows.
  • RadiusDefines the radius, in 3ds Max units, within which the Quicksilver renderer looks for occluding objects. Larger values cover larger areas.

For more information about ambient occlusion, see Built-in Ambient Occlusion (the version of AO used by the Architecture & Design Material has somewhat different controls).

Indirect Illumination

When on, enables indirect illumination. Indirect illumination improves the quality of lighting by taking into account bounced light. When indirect illumination is enabled, the controls for it become available. Default=off.

  • MultiplierControls the intensity of indirect illumination. The default value of 1.0 generates physically correct illumination. Default=1.0.
  • Sample Distribution AreaControls the size of the square area where sample points are distributed. The greater the value, the more the sample points are dispersed, which lowers the effective sampling quality. Default=100.0.
  • DecayControls the rate of decay of the indirect light. The greater the value, the quicker the decay. Default=1.0.
  • Enable Indirect Lighting ShadowsWhen on, the renderer indirect illumination can generate shadows. Default=off.

Transparency / Reflections group

These controls let you choose how the Quicksilver renderer handles transparent and reflective objects.

Transparency

When on, objects with transparent materials are rendered as transparent. Default=on.

  • SimpleUses the simplest method of calculating transparency.
  • BestUses the best method of calculating transparency, at the cost of render time.
Reflections

When on, the rendering displays reflections. Default=off.

ImportantEnabling Reflections enables static reflections only. To see dynamic reflections on an object, you must explicitly include it by using the subcontrols.

The subcontrols for reflections let you limit the number of objects that show reflections.

  • [Include/Exclude check box]When on, enables the Include button. Click the Include button to display the Include/Exclude dialog. In this context, Including an object allows it to generate reflections. Excluding an object excludes it from reflections, and saves render time. Default=off.
  • Material IDWhen turned on, lets you choose a Material ID value identifying those materials that will show reflections.
  • Object IDWhen turned on, lets you choose an Object ID value identifying those materials that will show reflections.

Depth of Field group

These controls let you add depth of field to the rendering. Depth of field is available only when you render a Camera or Perspective view.

Enable

When on, the rendering generates depth of field. Default=off.

[Camera drop-down list]

When From Camera (the default) is chosen, the Quicksilver renderer uses the Camera Environment Range settings to generate depth of field. No other controls are available.

When Override Camera is chosen, you can choose values for generating depth of field that differ from the Camera settings.

  • Focal PlaneSets the location of the focal plane as a distance from the Camera object, in 3ds Max units. Default=100.0.
  • Near PlaneSets the near plane as a distance from the Camera object, in 3ds Max units. Objects nearer than this plane will be blurred in the rendering. Default=90.0.
  • Far PlaneSets the far plane as a distance from the Camera object, in 3ds Max units. Objects farther than this plane will be blurred in the rendering. Default=110.0.

Hardware Shaders Cache Folder group

These controls let you manage the location of hardware shaders on your computer.

[Cache folder path]

Displays the path of the folder used to save hardware shaders.

The default location is in your user settings. The path depends on the operating system you are using:.

  • Windows XP:

    \documents and settings\<username>\local settings\application data\autodesk\3dsmax\2011 - 32bit\enu\plugcfg\ (or “64bit” for the 64-bit version)

  • Vista or Windows 7:

    \users\<username>\appdata\local\autodesk\3dsmax\2011 - 32bit\enu\plugcfg\ (or “64bit” for the 64-bit version)

Open Configure System Paths

Click to display the Configure System Paths dialog, which lets you choose an alternate location for saving hardware shaders.