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The Render Engine group of attributes contains controls for the core aspects of the rendering process, such as which render engine to use and the type of output produced in the process (images or RIB files). 


The Render Engine group

Render Mode

Controls the type of output to be produced when rendering. The available options are:

Render_________________Renders the layers of images as specified by the Output: Image Layers (AOVs) group of rendering attributes.
Export RIB File OnlyInstead of rendering the images, the renderer exports everything to one or more RIB files suitable for rendering the images at a later time.
Export RIB Archive OnlyThe scene will be exported to one or more RIB archives that can be read later by a RIB Archive Node in this scene or another one. Advanced options can be specified in the RIB Archive group of rendering attributes. (Refer to RIB Archive Guidelines for examples on how to use this option).

Export RIB File and Render*

*Option offered as part of the
3Delight Studio Pro package.

This mode exports everything to a RIB file and then invoke the standalone ‘renderdl’ program to render it in a background process. This means that once the RIB file is saved, the rendering is done using a completely separate and independent process from Maya. The log output of the renderer is saved into a log file named after the RIB file with a ‘.log’ extension. The images outputted by ‘renderdl’ are the same as if selecting Render for the Render Mode (i.e. the images are outputted as specified by the Displays group of attributes). Note that in this mode, those images can not be outputted to the Maya Render View.

Render Engine

Specifies the rendering engine to use for rendering. The available options are the 'Path Tracer' (default) for the ray tracing based algorithm and the 'REYES' based algorithm. Refer to the Pros and Cons of Path Tracing vs REYES for a discussion of the advantages of each options.

Progressive Refinement

This option is only available when using the 'Path Tracer' Render Engine. When this toggle is turned on, the rendering rapidly shows a coarse image and refines it progressively until completed. This option is effective only for images outputted directly to a window on screen (i.e. to the Maya Render View or to 3Delight i-Display). During batch rendering (i.e. when using Maya Batch) this option is ignored. Note that this is not required when rendering in Maya IPR, which is progressive by nature and support dynamic edits of materials, lights and cameras.

Progressive Refinement has a slight overhead in the order of 5-10%, depending on scene complexity and also produces images that may contain more noise / fireflies, therefore it should not be used for final renderings. Make sure to deactivate progressive refinement when rendering final frames submitted via RIB or with Maya runtime (as stated above, when using Maya Batch, progressive is always ignored).

When using Progressive Refinement, the Filter Type and Filter Width attributes (specified in the Quality group of rendering attributes) are ignored. A Box filter with a width of 1 is used instead. Because of this, your image rendered with this option may differ slightly from your final render using Maya Batch.


An image is rendered progressively in small groups of pixels called buckets. This option allows you to specify in what order the buckets are rendered. Rendering will be more memory-efficient if a bucket order that minimizes the number of objects being rendered simultaneously is chosen. The available options are:

HorizontalThe buckets are rendered row by row, from left to right and from top to bottom. This is the default.
VerticalThe buckets are rendered column by column, from top to bottom, and from left to right.
ZigzagThe buckets are rendered row by row, from left to right on even rows, and from right to left on odd rows.
SpiralThe buckets are rendered in a clockwise spiral starting at the centre of the image.
CircleThe buckets are rendered in concentric circles starting at the centre of the image. 

The following attributes are only available when Render Mode is set to Export RIB file and Render (as they can work only when the rendering is done through the standalone rendering program 'renderdl').

Use one or more remote computers* 

Turning this toggle on enables distributed rendering (i.e. to use one or more remote computers to render a single image). Each computer listed in Remote Computer List will be rendering a part of the image. This toggle is off by default.

*Option offered as part of the 3Delight Studio Pro package.

Remote Computer List

Specifies the list of computers to use for distributed rendering (list of their names separated by a space). Each computer will need to be configured to allow remote execution of a program using SSH or RSH (i.e. allowing password-less SSH or RSH). This control only applies when Use one or more remote computers is enabled.

Render Log

Specifies the file to receive the various messages outputted during the execution of the standalone rendering program 'renderdl'. Clicking on the view button will open the log file using the application designated in the 3Delight Preferences dialog.


RIB File Options

The following attributes are only available when Render Mode is set to Export RIB File OnlyExport RIB Archive Only or Export RIB File and Render.

RIB Filename

Specifies the name of the RIB file to save. If this attribute is empty when the Render Mode is set to export to a RIB file, a default name is automatically generated. If the Animation attribute is set to 'on' (see the Output: Frame Range group of attributes) and the RIB Filename remains the same for a series of frames, the RIB file will contain the data for every frame in the frame range. To save into separate files for each frame, the '#' frame number token must be inserted in the RIB Filename. See File Path Expressions for details on how it is possible to construct relative paths and / or paths containing dynamically expanded tokens.

Use Binary RIB

When this options is on, the RIB file will be saved in binary format, producing a smaller file. Turn this option off to produce a text RIB file, which is bigger but easier to read and edit. By default, this option is on.

Binary RIB files are faster to output, faster to render and use less disk space.

Use Compressed RIB

This option controls if the RIB file will be compressed, producing a smaller file. By default this option is off.

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