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Luxrender GPL Physically Based Renderer

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Microkernel OpenCL Engine

"Mr. Snippy" by Simon Wendsche

The flagship of LuxRender's engines in regards of pure sampling speed is now utilizing a microkernel architecture, thus making it possible to compile and render the most complex scenes imaginable on both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards.

The image on the left (original size: 3264 x 4326px) was rendered in 5 minutes on an AMD 7970 GPU. You can find the uncropped version here.

Biased Path Engine

Each image rendered for 3 minutes (model by Peter Sandbacka and Ian Blew)

The new Biased Path engine allows fine control over the sampling process.[1]

Adaptive Rendering

Red and yellow tiles are being worked on, the rest of the image is considered noise-free

When using the Biased Path engine, LuxCore stops rendering tiles that don't change anymore and concentrates computing power on tiles with a lot of noise.

This can be used to either render the image to a certain quality level (e.g. in animations) or to render in "never-stopping" mode where the noise level is reduced after all tiles are finished and the rendering continues until the user finds the quality acceptable.

Embree Accelerator

Debugging log showing the much faster build times of the Embree accelerator

Rendering with Intel Embree accelerator is between 20-50% faster than with QBVH. On top of that, it is about 500% faster while building the acceleration structure (e.g. a 13,000,000 polygon scene loads 2 seconds instead of 10).


Some of the new renderpasses

LuxCore now supports renderpasses like depth, material ID, masks per material or shadow masks that are particularly useful in compositing and postprocessing.

Arbitrary Clipping Plane

A closed classroom sliced in half by the arbitrary clipping plane

The arbitrary clipping plane allows to slice the scene, similar to the usual near/far camera clipping, but with completely free placement of the clipping plane.


Laser light made visible by volumetric scattering

The new laser light source emits light as a perfectly parallel beam, making older, unperfect workarounds with tubes and IES profiles obsolete. See the "Frickin' lazor beams" forum thread for details.


Pointiness used to mix between intact and damaged/worn wood

The new pointiness feature allows to use information about the surface curvature of a mesh in materials and textures. This powerful mechanic can for example be used to simulate worn edges on mechanical parts or furniture, moss in rock crevices and many more situations.

Volume Priority

Left: equal priority, right: red volume has higher priority

A new volume priority system lets the user decide which volume should "overwrite" the other in places where volumes overlap, making it very easy to have physically correct renderings of inaccurate simulation data like fluids without the need of fixing the geometry overlaps in the 3D software.

Shape: Strands

800,000 hairs rendered as 25,770,474 adaptively tesselated tris, taking up 2.75GB of RAM

New strands shape support.


Viewport Rendering

The viewport render shows the actual lighting and materials like they will be in the final render

The interactive viewport render first introduced with Cycles into Blender is now available for LuxRender, too! This means live updates of the rendered image while you edit your scene, place lights, change materials etc.
LuxBlend only updates what actually changed and uses the powerful live-editing features of the new LuxCore API to full extend.

C++ Accelerated Mesh Export

The mesh export now uses C++ code instead of Python

The mesh export process from LuxBlend is now about 16 times faster than before.

Volume Light Emission

Marble and wood textures were used to drive the emission colors of the volumes

LuxBlend now supports LuxCore's light emitting volumes feature, suited for fire or any other type of glowing volumes, offering endless possibilities. This video shows a textured heterogeneous volume with animated colors:

New LuxCore 3ds Max Renderer

Screenshot by TAO

Development of a completely new 3ds Max plugin has been started. It is using the C++ API, is integrated in the interface like most other renderer plugins and natively utilizes the LuxCore interface.

This renderer plugin is still in an early stage of development. If you want to contribute by testing the plugin, suggesting features or by joining the developer team refer to this thread for more information.