Tuesday, October 11th, 2016 Posted by Jim Thacker

Render Legion ships Corona Renderer 1.5 for 3ds Max

Render Legion has released Corona Renderer 1.5 for 3ds Max, the latest update to its CPU-based production renderer, adding a new interactive relighting feature and a range of new post-processing effects.

Interactive LightMix lets you adjust lighting on the fly without re-rendering
The main new feature in the 1.5 update in Interactive LightMix, a new feature for editing the colour and intensity of lights and light-emitting materials during or after rendering.

The functionality – think Maxwell’s Multilight system, but for Corona – makes it possible to relight scenes on the fly without re-rendering, with “almost negligible” extra processing costs.

LightMix set-ups can be saved as presets, making it possible to reuse looks you like; and it’s possible to save the individual light passes it generates for use in external compositing software.

New post effects and support for LUTs in the VFB
The Virtual Frame Buffer (VFB) also gets another update, following the introduction of region rendering and a history stack in Corona Renderer 1.4 earlier this year.

This time, the VFB gets support for post effects, including bloom, glare, vignetting and saturation.

There is also a new filmic tone-mapping system, and the option to apply LUTs to renders: the software comes with 77 by default, but you can import files in .3dl or .cube format.

Other new features: Distance Map and extra VR render formats
Other new functionality includes the Corona Distance Map, which generates a colour gradient based on the distance between two objects.

It has a range of possible applications, including mimicking contact dirt and wear, or surface displacement: Render Legion’s demo image shows it in use to generate ripples in water surrounding a submerged log.

It’s also now possible to render in horizontal strip format when generating 360-degree VR footage.

Improved pipeline compatibility and performance
The native Corona materials have also been updated in order to improve compatibility with third-party tools like Allegorithmic’s Substance software and Quixel’s new Megascans library.

Corona can also now render the physical material from the ART renderer introduced in 3ds Max 2017, although it’s still work in progress: there is “partial support” for clearcoat and SSS, but not metalness.

Performance improvements include faster displacement (“eight times faster on average, but we saw speed-ups of up to 40x”) and lower memory footprints on complex scenes with more than 255 lights.

There is also a long list of smaller changes and bugfixes, which you can find via the link below.

Pricing and availability
Corona Renderer 1.5 for 3ds Max is available for 64-bit 3ds Max 2012+, running on Windows Vista and above.

Users have a choice between a perpetual ‘Box’ licence, which costs €449 (around $499), and a ‘Fair SaaS’ rental model, which costs between €24.99 and €44.99 a month ($28-50). You can find more details here.

Read a full list of new features in Corona Renderer 1.5 for 3ds Max on Render Legion’s blog