Creative Edge Software has developed real-time ray tracer, new render capabilities for iC3D providing instantaneous rendering of high quality images for immediate visualization of even the most complex designs on-the-fly.
Creative Edge Software was the first company to deliver full ray tracing capabilities to all levels of packaging creatives with the launch of iC3D v4.0 in May 2016. By integrating ray tracing technology into the iC3D all-in-one package, creatives and brand owners were able to achieve photorealistic design mockups at any stage without the need for specialist programs or third-party services.
With the development of the iC3D real-time ray tracer as the latest upgrade to iC3D v5.0, Creative Edge Software said it has succeeded in combining the speed benefits of OpenGL technology, but using ray tracing to enable simultaneous photographic rendering of changes as they are made.
Traditionally, fast rendering of 3D visuals – for example, for gaming – has been achieved using OpenGL, a technology which creates appropriate levels of light, darkness and color within an image but does not have the ability to render scenes photographically. This is especially noticeable when the scene contains materials such as glass and liquids. To achieve photographic renders, packaging professionals and brand owners have relied on ray tracing, the current drawback being speed. This new capability has the potential to replace previous methods for achieving high-speed ray traced renders, such as via a render farm whereby the processing is shared between a group of top-specification computers.
It builds on key rendering advancements and distributed rendering capabilities enabled in the current iC3D release, v5.1. The technology works on almost any off-the-shelf Mac or PC in conjunction with an appropriate NVidia or AMD Graphics card. Alternatively, real-time ray tracer performance can also be achieved on older computers using commonly available external graphics card (eGPU) to extend graphics capability.
Using the new real-time ray tracer technology, high-resolution design renders can now be delivered at claimed unprecedented speeds. For example, a high-quality (1024 pxi) ray-traced image, 6000 x 3500 pixels in size, which would previously have taken up to four hours to render, can now be achieved to photorealistic quality in one minute, 49 seconds using an off-the-shelf PC with Nvidia 1080 Ti graphics card.
Nick Gilmore, Creative Edge Software CEO, said: ‘This breakthrough means that users can interact dynamically with their 3D virtual packaging designs without compromise to quality as they work. Changes can be made to photographic-quality artwork, geometry, materials and lighting without any time-lag in updating the scene.
‘Where a group of renders required urgently might previously have taken several hours to complete, they can now be completed in just a matter of minutes. iC3D real-time ray tracer has the potential not simply to streamline processes but to completely revolutionize your whole design operation.’
Real-time ray tracer will shortly be available as a free, automatic upgrade (v5.2), for users with an iC3D software maintenance agreement.