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v8 Chaos Corona for 3ds Max

Chaos Corona for 3ds Max
  

Downloads

Download demos and trial versions, product documentation, free presets and more.

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Realism without the headaches.

Chaos® Corona delivers high-quality, physically based shading for production rendering. Be an artist, not a technician, and achieve realism with greater ease than other rendering software.

Easy to use

Usability is Chaos Corona’s most powerful feature. Render setup is as simple as pressing “Render”. Most new users learn Corona in just one day — and fall in love with it in two.

Affordable

Chaos Corona is yours for under $50 per month or is even more economical at $318 per year with an annual plan. No hidden fees. No strings attached.

Part of an ecosystem

As a Corona user, you are backed by the award-winning Chaos family. Expand your capabilities with Chaos tools guaranteed to integrate smoothly with your favorite render engine.

What’s new in Corona 8

Discover how Chaos Corona 8’s new features, including Chaos Scatter, Chaos Cosmos, Corona Decal, and Corona Slicer, can invigorate your productivity and amplify your creativity.

Chaos Scatter

Trees, grass, shrubs, and rocks have been placed using Chaos Scatter, which can limit the trees on steep slopes, and carve out a roadway with splines.
Trees, grass, shrubs, and rocks have been placed using Chaos Scatter, which can limit the trees on steep slopes, and carve out a roadway with splines.

Place trees, rocks, grass, flowers, cars in a parking lot, and other objects where randomization or repetition is required.

Chaos Cosmos

From empty to full, from start to finish, with a few clicks of your mouse.
From empty to full, from start to finish, with a few clicks of your mouse.

Instant access to a huge collection of assets, materials, and HDRI skies, right from within your 3D host application.

Corona Decal

Easily add surface details or imperfections such as scratches, craters, cracks, smudges, splatters, and more, including displacement.

Easily add surface details or imperfections such as scratches, craters, cracks, smudges, splatters, and more, including displacement.

Corona Slicer

Use the Corona Slicer material to cut away sections of geometry at render time. You can cut with any shape that has the Slicer material applied, and even add caps to the exposed surfaces.
Use the Corona Slicer material to cut away sections of geometry at render time. You can cut with any shape that has the Slicer material applied, and even add caps to the exposed surfaces.

Corona Curvature Map

Chaos Corona Curvature MapChaos Corona Curvature Map

Add dirt or wear-and-tear derived from how quickly the surface is curving at that point.

Cryptomatte Support

Chaos Cryptomatte
Generate industry-standard Cryptomattes, making it easy to isolate and adjust individual components in your render in post.

Customisable Tone Mapping

Get the exact final look you want with new operators such as Tone Curve and Advanced Filmic Mapping, all in a user-configurable stack of operators so you can add, delete, and move them as necessary.

Adjustable PBR Reflection Tail

With this new parameter for the Corona Physical Material, you can create blurred reflections for metals to give a softer look with more “depth” to the material. It correctly affects caustics, too.

Caustics Include/Exclude

Remove unwanted caustics with new Include/Exclude options.

Dome Mapping for Environments

(Cinema 4D only, already exists in 3ds Max)

Ideal for automotive visualizations, product renders, and more, this mode “sticks” your 3D objects in place within the environment map as you move the camera around.

Here is an example render:

While here you can see it in use in Interactive Rendering:

Support for M1 machines

(Cinema 4D only)

Corona now supports running on M1 processors, bringing a 40-50% speed increase compared to running Corona under Rosetta.

New licensing system

Corona now uses the same licensing system as all Chaos products, making it easy to manage and maintain all your Chaos licenses in one place.


Chaos Corona 8 Quick Facts

  • Chaos Cosmos – Instant content for your scenes, at no charge, accessible within your 3D software.
  • ACES OT – just one of the new operators in the Tone Mapping stack, but we’re calling it out on its own as it’s one we are sure you will love. No settings required, just enable it and enjoy the final look this gives your image.
  • Chaos Scatter – Add rocks, plants, and other details to your scene with ease.
  • Corona Decal – Easily add surface details or imperfections, including displacement, from within the 3D viewport, reducing the need to fiddle with UV placement, making it the best-in-industry solution for decals that we know of.
  • Customizable Tone Mapping in the VFB – More realistic results with greater customization options, as you can now create your own customizable stack of tone mapping controls.
  • Corona Slicer – Create easy cutaways that can be animated, which are faster, more forgiving on topology, and have none of the instability of geometry-based booleans.
  • Corona Curvature map – Add dirt or wear-and-tear to objects with ease.
  • Cryptomatte support – A masking option that works with motion blur and depth of field, to make post-processing easier than ever.
  • Adjustable PBR reflection tail – Even more realistic materials allow for “softer” reflections without the blurriness of Roughness/Glossiness.
  • Caustics Include/Exclude control.
  • That’s many more “Quick Facts” than any release before, but there’s, even more, to talk about – you’ll find a full introduction to every Corona 8 feature, large and small, below.

Why Chaos Corona?

Ease of use

Usability is our most powerful feature. Render setup is really as simple as pressing “Render”. Most new users learn Corona in just one day — and fall in love with it in two.

Rendering

Chaos Corona delivers predictable, reliable, and physically plausible results with no compromises in quality. Realistic lighting and materials, including caustics, are yours right out of the box. The Corona Forum and Gallery section provide great examples of this.

Powerful workflow tools

The output quality and speed are not the only things that make a great renderer. That is why Corona comes with many “little” workflow tweaks that will make your life much easier.

Render-ready content

Time is money, so you need to create your scenes quickly and easily. Corona comes with a substantial collection of premade content – from models and assets to skies and materials – which will help you build your world in record-quick time.

Materials

Our design goal for Corona materials is to make them physically based, yet intuitive, flexible, and easy to set up.

Lights

The whole process of creating lights is designed to give artists complete control over their scene while being fast and intuitive…

Speed & interactivity

A usable renderer must always deliver final results as fast as possible and react to the user’s actions in a split second. And that is what we are always looking for.

Affordability

As a relatively young company, we have the luxury of being able to do things differently right from the start. We have taken a different approach not only in development but also when creating our pricing options.

Flexibility

We understand how important it is to be able to “bend” physical laws to deliver the results your clients expect. So Corona supports numerous reality hacks which allow you to get exactly the effect you desire.

Ecosystem

Welcome to the Chaos family! As a Corona user, you are backed by the Oscar and Emmy award-winning brand, and you can expand your capabilities with essential tools, guaranteed to integrate smoothly with your favorite render engine…

Distributed rendering

Rendering with multiple computers at once is essential for any real production. Corona facilitates this in multiple ways – for example, it has its own distributed rendering system, and it is compatible with the Backburner and Thinkbox’s Deadline render farm management systems.

Proudly CPU based

Chaos Corona does not need any special hardware to run. It uses the CPU and you can run it on any processor from Intel or AMD released in the past decade.

Note: See the Details page for information on the 3ds Max version and the Cinema 4D Version.

Corona Renderer 8 for 3ds Max Feature List

Last update: April 13, 2022 | Version: Chaos Corona 8 | Plugin: 3ds Max

Render engine

  • Biased and Unbiased solution
  • Path Tracing: unbiased solution
  • UHD and 4K (experimental) cache: two options for faster biased cached solution for interiors
  • Denoising
    • Reduces the number of passes needed to get a noise-free image, with render time reductions of 50 to 70%
    • Easy to use and fast to render
    • Corona High Quality denoiser, best quality, recommended for final renders
    • NVIDIA AI GPU-based denoising can be used for final renders at the user’s discretion (requires a compatible NVIDIA GPU)
    • Intel AI denoising can be used for final renders. CPU-only, and works with any CPU (not just Intel)
    • Interactive amount adjustment
    • Checkbox to enable/disable the result in the VFB
  • Fast Caustics Solver:
    • Easy to use, and fast to render
    • Includes caustics from reflection, refraction, and dispersion (splitting light into separate colors)
    • Enable or disable for specific light sources
    • Works with LightMix
    • Separate render element available for compositing caustics in post processing for even greater control
    • Works correctly with motion blur
    • Include/Exclude list for control over which objects receive caustics
  • Adaptive Image Sampling
    • Balances out the rendering calculations over the image to focus more processing power on tricky areas
    • High Quality Image filtering, gives a more natural and “less CGI” look to noise, making it less noticeable to the eye
    • Progressive rendering
    • Max Sample Intensity (MSI): automatically removes fireflies – accuracy/render speed tradeoff
    • Proudly CPU based

Interactive lightmix

  • Adjust color and intensity of lights, during and after rendering
  • Single-click set up (by instances, groups or individual lights, with memory requirements reported)
  • Supports multiple suns and multiple environments for different times of day from one render (see Corona Sky and Corona Sun in the Lights section)
  • Manual set up if required
  • Controlled from the VFB
  • Results can be pushed to the scene
  • Can be used for anything from subtle adjustments, to turning day into night, without re-rendering
  • Each light select pass can be denoised independently (this can be enabled during automatic setup)
  • LightMix result can be saved to a CXR file and then adjusted in the Corona Image Editor, or saved for compositing in other post-processing software
  • Lights can be selected in the scene from the LightMix tab

Interactive rendering

  • 100% the same render engine as for the final frame
  • All final frame rendering features supported, including Interactive LightMix, post-production effects such as bloom & glare, LUTs, etc.
  • NVIDIA AI GPU-based denoising, for denoising during Interactive Rendering (requires a compatible NVIDIA GPU)
  • Pick objects directly in the docked viewport
  • Set DOF focus point directly in the docked viewport (for Corona Cameras)
  • Image upscaling factor to allow rendering to a smaller resolution and upscaling (ideal for HighDPI displays)
  • While zooming-in in the IR, rendering is focused on visible area only
  • Subsampling lowers initial resolution at the beginning of rendering, for virtually real-time performance
  • Blue Noise Dithering to give visually pleasing results in the first few passes, for quick assessment of a scene when using Interactive Rendering
  • Results shown in 3ds Max viewport or Corona VFB

Chaos Cosmos

  • Instant content for your scenes, including
    • Models
    • Materials
    • HDRI Skies
    • Scatter presets
  • Accessible directly within 3ds Max or Cinema 4D
  • Content is categorized and easily searchable
  • Mark your favorites to find them quickly in other projects
  • Drag and drop anything you have downloaded into your 3D application
  • Content loads as Corona Proxies, with fully editable Corona Materials
  • On-demand downloads, only download what you need, when you need it
  • New content added between Corona releases

Chaos Scatter

  • Ideal for adding grass, trees, rocks, traffic or parked cars, crowds or pedestrians, etc. to your scenes
  • Can be used to scatter Decals
  • Control the distribution of hundreds, thousands, or millions of objects
  • Scatter on geometry, in a volume, or along splines
  • Distribute randomly, or in patterns
  • Limit distribution based on the steepness of a slope, e.g. prevent trees growing on cliffs etc.
  • Use spline include/excludes with controllable near and far parameters, e.g. to carve a path through trees, or limit flowers to a flowerbed
  • Associated texture map that colors scattered objects based on the colors of the object they are scattered on – ideal for created patterned rugs, variations in color on a lawn, etc.
  • Camera Clipping to limit scattering to within the camera field of view
  • Extend view parameter allows expanding the camera view culling to allow correct shadows or reflections from instances outside of the field of view
  • Edit or even delete individual instances after scattering
  • Random translation/rotation/scaling of instances, with optional discrete stepped values
  • Optionally avoids objects intersections, with tweakable inter–object spacing
  • Supports aligning instances to local normal
  • Control density and scale by maps
  • Different modes for using maps to control scatter scale, including RGB mode to define x, y and z scaling independently in one map
  • Several display modes and limits, to keep viewports responsive
  • Included Lister plugin to easily access and control all scatters in a scene
  • Fully replaces the older Corona Scatter

Materials

  • Corona Decal
    • Easily add surface details or imperfections, which can include displacement
    • Control scaling, positioning, and rotation using a 3D object in the viewport – no need to fiddle with complex UV mapping and placement
    • Stack Decals on top of each other, intuitively controlled by positioning in the 3D space
    • Decals apply to all objects they overlap, with an include/exclude list for fine control
    • Can take a mask from the input material, or a dedicated Map
    • Option to replace base displacement and base bump
    • “Fit to Bitmap” and “Fit to assigned mtl” to get correct aspect ratio for the Decal object
    • “Max angle limit” lets you avoid the decal being applied to backfaces, etc.
    • “Max angle blur” softens the transition from the “Max angle limit” control
    • Option to display the material as a preview in the 3D viewport
  • Corona Slicer Material
    • Used to cut away sections of geometry at render time
    • Cut with any shape that has the Slicer material applied
    • Cuts through all objects overlapped by the slicer, customizable via exclude/include lists
    • Option to cap resulting exposed surfaces
    • Caps can have their own material, or take the material from the object being sliced
    • Can preserve interior lighting of a house with cutaway by combining with the RaySwitch Material
  • CoronaPhysicalMtl
    • Default material since Corona 7
    • Base Layer for diffuse, roughness, reflection, bump, and translucency controls
    • Base layer uses Oren-Nayar shading model
    • Clearcoat Layer for adding a layer of varnish, lacquer, etc., featuring separate bump from the Base Layer
    • Sheen for creating realistic fabrics
    • Choice of Roughness or Glossiness workflow, both per-material and as scene default
    • Choice of IOR or Disney Specular workflow, both per-material and as scene default
    • Metalness workflow, where Metalness can be mapped
    • Metals can be controlled by simple Edge Color, or by Complex IOR
    • UI interactively enables or disables parameters based on whether a material is Metal or Non-Metal
    • 35 presets built-in to the material, as starting points, or to ‘reverse engineer’ to learn in creating your own materials
    • Refraction, including dispersion, caustics, and thin absorption (for Thin Mode)
    • Anisotropy correctly affects both Refractions and Reflection (both correctly affect caustics)
    • Thin mode for glass correctly blurs reflections and refractions
    • Opacity
    • Adaptive displacement with low memory requirements
    • Vector displacement
    • SSS mode for wax, marble, and other materials that do not use Thin Mode or full Refraction
    • Volumetric scattering and absorption mode for fog, mist, and for colored glass, liquids and other materials that use Refraction without Thin Mode
    • Self-illumination
    • Adjustable PBR reflection tail
  • CoronaLegacyMtl
    • Uses Lambertian shading model
    • Legacy material, to preserve identical results from scenes created in earlier versions of Chaos Corona
  • CoronaSkinMtl
    • Dedicated material for skin
    • Three independent Subsurface Scattering layers
    • Two independent Reflection layers
  • CoronaHairMtl
    • Dedicated material for hair and fur
    • Colored and Colorless reflection layers
    • Color controls via melanin amounts, or directly
    • Adjustable random Glints
  • CoronaLayeredMtl
    • Similar to 3ds Max Blend material
    • Combines multiple materials instead of just two
    • Individual layers can be toggled on/off
    • Displacement from the individual materials can be combined via blend or additive modes, or taken only from the base layer
  • CoronaSelectMtl
    • Store multiple materials for one object, and select between them via radio buttons
    • Radio buttons can be keyframed, and accessed via MAXScript
  • CoronaLightMtl
    • Identical performance to CoronaLight
    • Various non-physical settings
    • Textured emission (useful for backplates)
  • CoronaRaySwitchMtl
    • Uses different material for different ray types: direct, GI, reflections, refractions
  • CoronaShadowCatcherMtl
    • Custom backplate textures
    • Screen, spherical, or no projection
    • Supports glossy surfaces
    • Bump mapping
    • Lights work additively (illuminators) or subtractively
  • CoronaVolumeMtl
    • Simplified material for volumetric scattering and absorption
    • “Inside Mode” allows for true 3D volumetric materials
  • Drag and drop bitmaps from Windows Explorer directly into Corona material slots
  • 3ds Max materials
    • Standard
    • Blend (including nested blend materials)
    • Multi/Sub-Object
    • XRef
    • Shell
    • Double Sided
    • Top/Bottom
    • DirectX Shader
  • Support for 3ds Max physical material

Material library

  • Over 520 ready-to-use high quality materials
  • Drag-and-drop from the Library to the viewport, slate material editor and compact material editor
  • Real World Scale or Triplanar mapping used where possible, to reduce tiling and give expected scaling
  • Materials organized by category
  • Set favorites, with display favorites only option
  • Sort by name, favorites, or most used
  • Select all objects in the scene that use a particular material
  • Resizable material previews
  • Open standalone large preview windows for materials

Texmaps

  • CoronaSky
    • See the Lights section
  • CoronaCurvature
    • Add wear-and-tear or dirt to an object, based on the curves of the surface
    • Identify concave areas, convex areas, or both at once
    • Ray directionality to control how “focused” the effect is
    • Distance to control how far the effect extends
    • Color spread to control smoothness of blending between colors
  • CoronaAO
    • Ambient occlusion shader
    • Supports textures
    • Includes/Excludes
    • Additional controls: spread, directionality, inverted mode, etc.
  • CoronaDistance
    • Gradient based on distance to other objects
    • Supports textures
    • List of objects to calculate distance from
    • Can be used in Chaos Scatter density map to control placement of objects
    • Wide range of other creative uses, e.g. ripples on water around objects, controlling light intensity and color, etc.
    • Supports all geometry including Corona Proxy, Chaos Scatter, and 3ds Max particle objects, as well as Cameras and other objects
    • Works as an input to bump mapping
  • CoronaColorCorrect
    • Adjust brightness, saturation etc. of a texture map (and still have it affected by VFB post-processing)
    • Unique tone mapping capabilities (not present on other output nodes), including LUTs, gamma, curves, green-magenta tint, etc.
    • Mode available so that one CoronaColorCorrect controls multiple other CoronaColorCorrects, allowing you to apply the same adjustments to multiple maps and adjust those from one location
  • CoronaTonemapControl
    • Specify whether a texture map should be affected by VFB Exposure, Tone Mapping, etc.
  • CoronaUvwRandomizer
    • Apply random offset / rotation / scale to textures and maps by instance, material id, mesh element, etc., each of which can be enabled via checkbox to allow multiple randomization modes at once
    • Options to allow randomization of seamless textures, e.g. to avoid visibly obvious tiling
  • CoronaMix
    • Advanced mix shader
    • Texture or color inputs, different blending modes
    • Works as an input to bump mapping
  • CoronaRaySwitch
    • Same as RaySwitch material, but on texmap instead of material level
  • CoronaColor
    • Allows to input single constant color using a color picker
    • HDR numerical values, Kelvin temperature, web hex input
  • CoronaTriplanar
    • Apply textures without explicit UV mapping, with no stretching or seams thanks to the built-in blending
  • CoronaBitmap
    • Works similarly to 3ds Max bitmap, but faster (10-20%)
    • Can load .tx files (via drag and drop into the “Load File” section of the UI in the Corona Bitmap)
    • Spherical, Dome, Cross and Mirrorball modes for use as an Environment
    • Rotation via degrees or U Offset (for environments)
    • Asynchronous loading (start work on a scene without wait for all textures to load)
  • CoronaSelect
    • Store multiple maps in a material, and select between them via radio buttons
    • Radio buttons can be keyframed, and accessed via MAXScript
    • Batch load option to load multiple maps at once
  • CoronaMultiMap
    • Randomly assigns colors/maps to instances, mesh elements, or decals, each of which can be enabled via checkbox to allow multiple randomization modes at once
    • Frequency spinners
    • Hue, Gamma and Saturation randomization
    • Features advanced blending modes
    • Global blur multiplier to affect all multimaps elements
    • Supports up to 25 inputs directly, with another 75 accessible via MAXScript
    • Can be used with just one input, applying gamma and hue randomization
  • CoronaRoundEdges
    • Rounded corners shader
    • Works as an input to bump mapping and other material slots
    • Fast mode for faster rendering and no noise, with no parameters needed
    • Precise mode for blending across other objects / elements / materials
  • CoronaNormal
    • Automatic detection of incorrect input gamma
  • CoronaBumpConverter
    • Converts RGB maps to be compatible with the Bump channel (e.g. 3ds Max native Marble, Wood, ColorCorrect, etc.)
  • CoronaFrontBack
    • Shows different colors/texmaps on front/back sides of a material
  • CoronaWire
    • Wire shader
    • Allows to set edge/vertex size in world or screen coordinates
    • Falloff between Base and Edges / Vertices color
    • Can be used as input to bump mapping
  • CoronaUserProperty
    • Assign a numeric value to a node, for use with MAXScript
  • CoronaOutput
    • Legacy only, used in scenes created before Chaos Corona 2. Replaced by CoronaColorCorrect and CoronaToneMapControl

Lights

  • CoronaSky
    • New PRG Clear Sky model based on atmospheric data
    • “Aerial Perspective” via Volume Effect
    • Altitude sets the height of the observer
    • Turbidity controls whether sky is clear or overcast
    • Artistic control over Horizon Blur
    • Can be linked to a Corona Sun, allowing different times of day
    • Supports dawn/twilight with the Corona Sun as low as -2.85 degrees (approximately 5.4 sun diameters) below the horizon
    • Allows changing of the ground color
    • Also offers Hošek & Wilkie, Preetham et al., and Rawa-fake sky models
    • Alternatively can be set to use an HDRI, see Corona Bitmap for more information
    • Multiple skies are supported, and each one can be paired with specific Corona Suns, for use in LightMix
  • CoronaSun
    • Standalone object or part of 3ds Max daylight assembly
    • Multiple Suns are supported, and each one can be paired with specific Corona Skies, for use in LightMix
    • Allows non-physical properties (such as changing size, color, disabling visibility in reflections, etc.)
  • CoronaLight
    • Shapes: sphere, rectangle, disk, cylinder
    • IES profiles
    • Directionality
    • Textured emitters
    • Physical units
    • Color (RGB input, Kelvin temperature, texmap)
    • Non-physical settings: disabling shadows, includes/excludes, disabling visibility in reflections, preventing black appearance for lights with directionality
  • Corona Light Material
    • Turns any object into a light
    • No render time differences compared to using a CoronaLight
  • 3ds Max native lights

Environment

  • Drag and drop any texture into the 3ds Max environment slot to illuminate your scene
  • No dome object required
  • Adaptive Environment Sampler ensures fast and accurate sampling of HDRI and Sky environments, without the need for portals
  • Importance sampling speeds up rendering
  • Direct/Reflect/Refract overrides
  • Global material for volumetric effects such as fog (also see Volume Effect under Corona Sky for an “aerial perspective” instead

Corona Virtual Frame Buffer

  • An optional, feature-rich replacement for the 3ds Max native VFB
  • Integrated tone mapping controls
    • Fully customizable stack – add, delete, and move all the parameters to create precisely the effect you want
    • Presets to provide a starting point
    • Tone mapping stacks can be saved and loaded, independent of other VFB controls
    • Each Corona Camera can have its own unique tone mapping stack and settings, which are displayed and controlled in the VFB without having to edit the Camera settings
    • Included parameters:
      • Basic
        • Contrast
        • Green-Magenta Tint
        • Photographic Exposure
        • Saturation
        • Simple Exposure
        • Tint
        • Vignette
        • White Balance
      • Curve Control
        • Advanced Filmic Mapping
        • Curves
        • Filmic Mapping
        • Tone Curve
      • Highlight Control
        • Reinhard Highlight Compression
      • Final Look
        • ACES Output Transform
        • LUT
  • Integrated Interactive LightMix, allows changing color and intensity of lights without re-rendering
  • Integrated lens effects offering a high degree of realism and creativity for bloom & glare effects affected by lens scratches, dirt, etc.
  • Sharpening/blurring
  • Save and load post-processing configurations, and exchange those to and from the Corona Image Editor and Corona Cameras
  • Save and load LightMix configurations, and exchange those to and from the Corona Image Editor
  • Pick objects directly in the VFB
  • Set DOF focus point directly in the VFB (for Corona Cameras)
  • VFB History and Comparison, with ability to toggle between using the current post-processing, or the post-processing at the time of saving the image to history
  • Statistics: render time, remaining time, performance, polycount, tooltip explanations, etc.
  • Displaying/saving render elements
  • Pixel color probe on right mouse button
  • Controls: start render/stop render, resume last render, resume rendering from file, save/clone/copy image, etc.
  • Optional stamp with scene info at the bottom of rendered image
  • Customizable information in the title bar
  • Interactive and Multiple Render Regions
  • Render Regions scale with the VFB, are saved with the 3ds Max scene file, and can be globally disabled or enabled
  • Fuzzy render regions
  • Zoom buttons for use when accessing a machine remotely

Corona Image Editor

  • Runs outside of any 3D software
  • All the familiar controls from the Corona VFB
  • Adjust lighting in the rendered image using the full range of LightMix controls (on Corona EXRs)
  • Apply Denoising (on Corona EXRs)
  • Apply all the Corona post-processing options (on any EXR)
  • Save and load post-processing configurations, and exchange those to and from the Corona VFB and Corona Cameras
  • Save and load LightMix configurations, and exchange those to and from the Corona VFB
  • Bloom & Glare virtual element which can be viewed or saved separately
  • Save to EXR, PNG, JPG and BMP

Post-processing effects

  • Controlled from render settings, Corona Camera, or VFB
  • All settings are adjustable during/after rendering
  • Image updated in real time
  • Bloom & Glare
    • Both controlled independently
    • Threshold
    • Color intensity & shift to adjust colors
    • Glare ray count, blurriness and rotation
    • Lens Effects for scratches, dirt, etc.

Corona Camera

  • Dedicated Corona camera offering all standard camera controls plus all Corona controls such as exposure, DOF, motion blur, LUTs etc.
  • Set focus distance using a static or animated target object
  • Per-camera object includes / excludes
  • Customizable viewport appearance
  • Save and load post-processing configurations, and exchange those to and from the Corona VFB and Corona Image Editor
  • Tone mapping parameters respond immediately in Interactive Rendering without restarts
  • Render to fisheye, orthographic, perspective, spherical, cylindrical or cubemap projections

Camera effects

  • High quality (raytraced) depth of field and motion blur effects
  • Photographic controls (optional): shutter speed + ISO + f-stop
  • Fisheye lens effects
  • Bokeh shape
    • Circular
    • N-gonal (bladed aperture)
    • Custom image
    • Center Bias
    • Vignetting
    • Anisotropy
  • Multi-segment (curved) motion blur
  • 3ds Max 2016 Physical Camera support
  • Virtual Reality Camera

Exposure and color mapping

  • Controlled from render settings, Corona Camera, or VFB
  • All settings are adjustable during/after rendering
  • Image updated in real time
  • Two exposure control modes
    • Photographic exposure: shutter speed + ISO + f-stop
    • Simple exposure: single EV value
  • See the Corona Virtual Frame Buffer section for a full list of controls

Corona Camera Mod

  • Legacy Camera object modifier for backwards compatibility
  • Allows setting Corona exposure/DOF/ motion blur/bloom & glare/color mapping on any camera

Render elements

  • Arbitrary number of render elements
  • Optional render elements anti-aliasing
  • Optional render elements Denoising (where relevant)
  • Beauty element, with independent Denoise amount
  • Alpha element
  • Beauty composition elements
    • Direct, indirect, reflect, refract, translucency, emission, caustics, volumetrics
  • Geometry elements
    • Geometry normals, shading normals, primitive coordinates, UVW coordinates, world position, z-depth, Velocity render element
  • Masking elements
    • Wire color
    • Primitive/Material/Object ID
    • Cryptomatte
    • Option to propagate masks through reflection, refraction, both, or none
    • Custom mask
    • Object selection
    • Material G-buffer ID
    • Object G-buffer ID
  • Shading elements
    • Albedo, individual direct/indirect BRDF components, raw components, source colors, shadows, caustics, Bloom & Glare
  • Informational elements
    • RenderStamp, SamplingFocus
  • Arbitrary texmap elements
    • Ambient occlusion
    • Wire shader
    • Vertex colors

Distributed rendering

  • Slaves can join or quit the render session after it has started
  • Auto discovery of slaves on local network
  • Auto sending of assets to all machines (only if required)
  • Pass, Time and Noise Level limits can be used
  • Can be enabled / disabled during rendering

Corona official toolbar

  • Provides one-click access to many Chaos Corona functions, such as creating a Corona Camera from the current perspective view, opening the VFB, opening the Material Library, creating Corona Proxies and Lights, etc.

Corona Unified Lister

  • Provides access to and control over all Corona Lights in the scene.

Geometry

  • CoronaProxy
    • Cross-platform proxy format – .cgeo
    • Faster save/load/display of large scenes
    • Compressed format to save disk space
    • Supports animated meshes
    • Supports loading of vrmesh proxies (mesh data only)
  • CoronaVolumeGrid
    • Allows loading and rendering of OpenVDB files
    • Useful for importing simulations such as clouds, smoke, fire, liquids, etc.

VR

  • Corona Camera can render to spherical or cubemap format, supporting a wide range of VR apps
  • Easy setup, with default settings handling 99% of cases
  • Conventional stereo rendering (non-360)
  • Bloom & Glare supported for spherical VR images

Supported 3ds Max features

  • Most texmaps
    • Including Bitmap, Camera Map Per Pixel, Cellular, Checker, ColorCorrection, Composite, Dent, Falloff, Gradient, Gradient Ramp, Marble, Mix, Noise, Output, Particle Age, Perlin Marble, RGB Multiply, RGB Tint, Smoke, Speckle, Splat, Stucco, Vertex Color, Waves, Wood
  • 3ds Max standard/photometric lights
    • Including soft shadows via CoronaShadows
  • 3ds Max render switches
    • Disabling Displacement, Render Hidden Geometry, Renderable, Object Visibility, etc.
  • XRef geometry/scenes
  • 2D Pan Zoom Mode
  • Render to Texture (RTT) basic support; denoising RTT results is supported

MISC

  • 2.5 D Displacement
    • This method of calculating displacement saves significant memory and parsing times
  • Asynchronous loading
    • CoronoBitmap and Proxies are now loaded in the background, allowing faster scene opening
  • V-Ray compatibility
    • Supports assets from V-Ray 3.60 or newer (assets from older versions may work, but not guaranteed)
    • Renders VRayMtl and VRayLight, even if V-Ray is not licensed or not installed, without running any sort of conversion
  • Hair and Fur support
    • 3ds Max native Hair and Fur
    • Ephere Ornatrix
    • HairFarm
    • Hair rendering both as billboards or as full cylindrical geometry
  • Chaos Phoenix support
    • Supports Chaos Phoenix 3.10.00 or newer (3.10.03 required for compatibility with Interactive Rendering)
    • Supports Foam
  • Corona Displacement Modifier
    • Allows setting per-object Subdivision Quality
    • Adaptive displacement, with low memory requirements
    • All displacement features and settings that are available in a CoronaMaterial
  • Advanced “Render Selected”
    • Render mask by an include list, object ID, or viewport selection
  • Improved Color Picker
    • Can be set to replace default 3ds Max color picker
    • Choice between sRGB modes for ease of use with Photoshop and similar, or Linear modes
    • Perceptually uniform color gradients in both modes
    • Color selection by RGB, HSV, CMYK, or Temperature
    • Choice between 0-255, 0-1, or 0-100% for values
    • Adjustable averaging of neighboring pixels
    • Inverse color picker allows setting of white balance in combination with the Color Tint parameter in the VFB
  • Error reporting with online help
    • Error messages linked to dedicated support pages with more info and possible solutions
    • Automatic selection of the offending object
    • Automatic correction of certain errors
    • Error message forwarding from render slaves in DR
  • Corona Converter
    • One-click solution to convert materials, lights, and maps from other renderers, and from older versions of Chaos Corona
  • Improved material editor scene
    • More representative previews
  • Override material option (with excludes/includes; options to preserve displacement, light materials, glass materials, portals, and unsupported materials; also works for multi/sub-object materials)
  • Comprehensive support for file formats
    • CoronaBitmap supports Kodak Cineon, SGI file, RLA image file, Adobe PSD Reader, and DDS image file formats, as well as all the more common formats (JPG, PNG, etc.)
    • CoronaVFB supports saving to the most common formats, including .TIF with specified output color depth, alpha channel, etc.
  • Save and resume
    • Ability to save VFB and resume rendering later (even on a different computer)
  • Render only elements
    • Computes render elements in seconds without doing shading
  • Autosave
    • Optionally saving the VFB every few minutes and after rendering. Rendering can be resumed from these backups
  • Bundled LUTs
    • Over 70 LUTs included with the install
  • Bundled IES profiles
    • Sample IES files included
  • UI supports HiDPI monitors

Basic Facts

  • Corona Renderer is entirely CPU-based (with optional GPU denoising which requires a compatible NVIDIA GPU)
  • Offers unbiased and biased rendering
  • The two commercially available plugins work with 3ds Max and Cinema 4D

Hardware Requirements

  • For Corona Renderer 2 and newer, you will need a CPU that supports the SSE4.1 instruction set (any processor from within the last 10 years). Here is a list of compatible CPUs.
  • To use our optional Fast Preview Denoiser (NVIDIA OptiX), you need an NVIDIA GPU with Maxwell or newer architecture and the newest GPU driver. Not all mobile GPUs are supported.
    Note: this denoiser type is optional, and Corona Renderer will work fine even if it’s not installed (for example if you are using an AMD or integrated GPU). We also offer a high-quality denoiser, which utilizes purely the CPU, and this denoiser can be used on any computer which can run Corona Renderer.
  • There are no further specific hardware requirements.

Software Requirements

3dsMax version

  • Autodesk 3ds Max x64 version 2014-2023
  • 64-bit Microsoft Windows (8, 8.1, 10, 11)
  • Installation requires administrator privileges
  • Distributed rendering also requires Autodesk Backburner, available for free from Autodesk

Cinema 4D version

  • 64-bit MAXON Cinema 4D R14-R25
  • 64-bit Microsoft Windows (8, 8.1, 10, 11) or macOS (10.14 or newer)
  • Installation requires administrator privileges

GPU Denoiser

  • To ensure smooth operation and best performance of our Fast Preview Denoiser (NVIDIA OptiX), please make sure you are using the newest driver available for your graphics card. The drivers can be downloaded from nvidia.com.

What hardware do you recommend?

Corona is a CPU-only renderer, so the more powerful CPU you use, the faster renders you get. You can compare the performance of various CPU models here: https://corona-renderer.com/benchmark/results

Another well-known website with various CPU benchmarks is https://www.cpubenchmark.net/

The above benchmark results are proportional to the rendering performance in Corona, so you can define your budget and pick a CPU with the highest score within that budget.

 

You will also need a decent graphics card, however, that is only needed for good viewport performance in your host software (3ds Max or C4D). To use the Nvidia Optix denoiser, which is integrated into Corona (but optional), you will need an Nvidia graphics card.

 

You will also need as much RAM as possible. Nowadays, 32 GB is the bare minimum and 64 is the standard. If you can get even more, you will be able to render even more complex scenes without running into any issues.

 

We do not really have any recommended hardware manufacturers or partners. You are however welcome to post on our forum, where our users can suggest you some specific hardware manufacturers and models: https://forum.corona-renderer.com/index.php?board=32.0

Corona 8, Hot Fix 1

Released June 14, 2022 for both 3ds Max and Cinema 4D.

Works with 3ds Max 2014 – 2023
Works with Cinema 4D R14 – S26

Chaos Corona 8 for Cinema 4D (Hotfix 1)
This release brings compatibility with Cinema 4D R26/S26, and the following bug fixes:

Scatter

  • Fixed problem with Avoid collisions in Chaos Scatter not working with Decals

macOS

  • Fixed import of some Cosmos materials on macOS
  • Fixed problem with missing close button in About dialog in S22 on macOS
  • Fixed crash when using Cosmos on macOS when both Corona and V-Ray are installed
  • Fixed crash when using search in Cosmos browser on macOS (this was changed on server side)

General Bugfixes

  • Fixed errors reported in command line version of Cinema 4D when loading Corona
  • Fixed issues when using ColorPicker in Corona VFB with linear percent value types
  • Fixed issues (Non-Standard Format error) when loading different types of LUTs
  • Cosmos materials are now imported with correct scale when using triplanar mapping
  • Fixed problems with importing Cosmos objects when path to assets download directory contains localized characters
  • Fixed normal map evaluation on Corona Proxy
  • Fixed flipped “Offset V” when using Corona bitmap with UVW mapping on Corona decal
  • Partially fixed problem where switching from viewport camera to Corona camera could reset camera tone mapping pipeline

Chaos Corona 8 for 3ds Max (Hotfix 1)
This release contains the following bug fixes:

Scatter

  • Fixed issue where using Unpack option of the installer from network drive did not unpack Scatter

Tone mapping

  • Fixed UI delay issue when using tone mapping in Camera with operator-animated keys
  • Fixed issue where right-clicking at the numerical value of spinbox led to reset of the value
  • Fixed issue where resetting opacity of LUT could reset selected LUT file
  • Fixed issues (Non-Standard Format error) when loading different types of LUTs
  • Tone mapping pipeline is now created in every scene, without need to interact with it first, allowing users to access it from MAXScript

Cosmos

  • Updated Cosmos service shipped with Corona installer

General/Bugfixes

  • Fixed issues when using ColorPicker with linear percent value types
  • Fixed crash when changing 3ds max 2023 theme
  • Fixed issue where switching the renderers can crash after loading saved custom defaults
  • Fixed issue where user can’t import models from Cosmos when download folder contains non-ascii characters
  • Fixed tyFlow crash when the input mesh is empty
  • Fixed color temperature gamma issues in Color Picker
  • Fixed issue where clicking on temperature or albedo in Color Picker without changing their values would change the color
  • Fix of issue with Color picker, when albedo and color temperature were changing even though they did not change
  • Color Picker, fixed changing of values when clicking on spinbox value boxes
  • Color Picker, fixed changing of color palette position when clicking into spinbox value boxes
  • Fixed Corona objects (Light) being broken in some specific scenes where 3dsmax does not provide version information for an unknown reason
  • Clicking “None” in IES rollout of CoronaLight now correctly opens the corona IES folder
  • Fixed crash when expanding track view of camera with animated tone mappping override
  • Fixed, Distance Map doesn’t update when rendering a sequence

Other

  • Added support for Phoenix 5

Download now: https://corona-renderer.com/download


What’s new in Chaos Corona 8?


Corona Renderer 7 for Cinema 4D (Hotfix 2)

This release provides compatibility with Cinema 4D R25 and the following bug fixes:

  • Corona node editor now supports drag&drop from new Cinema 4D Asset Browser
  • Fixed Team Render crashing in older versions of Cinema 4D
  • Fixed problem with Corona node editor showing incorrect preview in documents using linear input color profile
  • Fixed IR crash in scenes with cloner containing multiple subobjects in multi-instance mode

Download now from https://corona-renderer.com/download


Cinema 4D Hotfix 2 – 28 April 2021

Corona Renderer 6 for Cinema 4D (Hotfix 2) released! This release provides support for Cinema 4D S24, and also:

  • Fixed crash when setting the Max IR passes limit for viewport IR (this was not reproducible, but it was backported from Corona Renderer 7 dailies to be sure, as theoretically the problem was there in v6)
  • Fixed occasional crashes when rendering animations
  • Fixed Team Render Server crashes when starting multiple single-image renders
  • Fixed problem with UI locking up when the material contains a bitmap referencing a missing asset
  • Fixed “Copy” button in Corona VFB not working on Mac

3ds Max Hotfix – 20 April 2021

  • 3ds Max 2022 support

Corona Renderer 6 for 3ds Max

We’re pleased to release Corona Renderer 6 for 3ds Max! This time around we’ve focused on giving you the tools to attain greater realism and be more creative, while also speeding up your workflow.

NEW FEATURES VIDEO

For the tl;dr generation, here’s the New Features video for a quick overview of what is in this release:

Quick Facts

  • New Sky Model has better overall tint to the lighting in daytime, but most importantly supports the sun being below the horizon (as low as -2.85 degrees, or roughly 5.4 sun diameters) for dawn/twilight
  • Randomized tiling in the UvwRandomizer lets you avoid the “repeating pattern” look that even seamless textures have
  • New Adaptive Environment Sampler removes the need for Portals, saving you the time (and pain!) of setting those up, while giving more accurate results
  • New Lens Effects give you vastly more control over bloom & glare
  • Material Library update with 78 new materials
  • New Masking options that work in reflections and refractions giving you greater control in post
  • Support for Phoenix FD Foam so you can take full advantage of Phoenix FD water simulations

Corona Renderer 6 for Cinema 4D

August 25, 2020

Quick Facts

  • New Sky Model has better overall tint to the lighting in daytime, but most importantly supports the sun being below the horizon (as low as -2.85 degrees, or roughly 5.4 sun diameters) for dawn/twilight
  • Randomized tiling in the UvwRandomizer lets you avoid the “repeating pattern” look that even seamless textures can have
  • New Lens Effects give you vastly more control over bloom & glare
  • The Corona Distance shader lets you create “smart” materials that know how far away they are from objects in the scene. Use this to add waves around a coastline, wear-and-tear where objects meet, dirt and noise under window sills, and more
  • New Adaptive Environment Sampler removes the need for Portals, saving you the time (and pain!) of setting those up, while giving more accurate results
  • The VFB can now be set to use the same color space that Cinema 4D uses in the native Picture Viewer, perfect for when you are batch rendering or rendering an animation (as those always save from the Picture Viewer)
  • New Masking options that work in reflections and refractions giving you greater control in post
  • Node Editor Fixes giving greater stability, so you can safely make the most of what the Corona Node Editor adds to Cinema 4D
  • And of course lots of other quality of life improvements, bug fixes, and more!

Corona Renderer 5 for 3ds Max (Hotfix 2) released

April 20, 2020

This release fixes the following issue:

  • Using the CoronaProxy pick from scene and selecting an object caused 3ds Max to crash

There are no other changes.

Download from https://corona-renderer.com/download


Corona Renderer 5 for Cinema 4D

Major Features

2.5D Displacement

The new 2.5D Displacement will help you make the most of your RAM, offering substantial savings on memory usage. 2.5D Displacement is the default in all new scenes, and if you open an existing scene you can choose to instantly and automatically swap over and take advantage of those memory savings!

Open full-sized comparison

This example is almost nothing but pure displacement, and Corona Renderer 5 used around 16.8% less RAM when using the new 2.5D displacement.

2.5D Displacement allows the use of a smaller Screen or World Size value, which means more detail in the geometry created by displacement while still needing less memory.

Loading an existing scene will ask if you want to swap to this new displacement. If you choose yes, then the Screen Size value for the scene will be adjusted automatically – for example, if your existing scene had a Screen Size of 3, it will automatically be adjusted to a value of 2 (you can, of course, make further adjustments to it yourself if needed). If you manually set up the new 2.5D displacement, setting Screen Size to two-thirds of its previous value is a good guide, the same as the automatic set up would do.

Please note – all our tests and all feedback from users so far has shown that 2.5D displacement is far better than the old displacement. Unless we hear of any opposite experiences, and if all goes as expected, we plan at some point in the future to remove the old displacement from Corona Renderer and leave only the 2.5D displacement.

Known Current Limitations:
– Using a Corona Light Material on an object which has 2.5D displacement may give undesired results; you can read this article for more information

Caustics Optimizations

Caustics have been optimized, and you can simply load any existing scene and you will find it renders faster and requires less memory (or of course get those benefits in any new scene you create)

Open full size comparison

In the example above, by simply opening the scene and rendering with no changes, Corona Renderer 5 saved 11.7% memory, and needed around 9.2% less render time.

(One thing you will note in all these comparisons is that the caustics intensity has changed slightly with Corona Renderer 5, due to more accurate calculations).

corona render 3ds v5 prism

The above prism scene (Adam Iwackowski, quadrays.com) is almost nothing but caustics, so we can narrow down the performance gains from the caustics improvements alone (rather than gains from geometry parsing, instancing, etc.). Here we see that Corona Renderer 5 saves 10.5% memory, and needs 37% less render time.

Caustics have also been improved with multiple lights. Caustics now also respect the Include/Exclude list of lights, so in addition to the usual effects of excluding an object from a light, that object will also no longer create reflective or refractive caustics from that light.

Conversely, if you create an Include list, then only objects in that list will generate reflective and refractive caustics from that light (in addition to the usual effects of adding objects to the Include list for the light).

This can be used for:

  • Artistic purposes, to get a desired result
  • Control over multiple objects that use the same material (rather than create separate materials with refractive caustics on and off)
  • Optimizations to render times by removing objects that generate some caustics which do not contribute significantly to the result
    (do keep in mind that you are excluding the object from ALL interactions with that light, not just the caustics aspects of that light – you could of course duplicate the light source, to have one “caustics only” light that only generates caustics for particular objects)

Improved Handling of Corona Proxies

The Corona Proxy now lets you save animated objects as a proxy and then choose how the animation is played back when loaded into a proxy – making those trees swaying in the breeze, a breeze!

In a scene with 50 cloned instances of an animated Corona Proxy, Corona Renderer 5 saved around 70% of the time taken to load the scene and get the first result from the Viewport IR.

Similar time savings are seen when scrubbing to a new frame in the time bar, where Corona Renderer 5 is responsive and the change is almost immediate, compared to a long wait with Corona Renderer 4. This improvement in UI responsiveness comes when working with large amounts of proxies that are using the same data – now, if you have a 1,000 copies of the proxy all loading the same tree geometry, the data is loaded only once rather than 1,000 times.

All of this translates over to render times too, since Corona Renderer 5 has less preparation before it starts rendering. In this example scene with 500 instances, there was a 4 minute and 18 second wait before Corona Renderer 4 could begin rendering, while Corona Renderer 5 took just 2 seconds! Final results were a 15% saving in the overall time to get to the finished image.

Select Shader and Material

Have you ever had a scene where you needed to save three different materials for a table? Did you leave the materials in the scene and hope you never clicked “Remove Unused”? Did you save three different versions of the scene? Did you create three copies of the table, each with its own material, and switch which one was visible?

Now all that can be handled much more easily. The Corona Select functionality comes in two forms, a Shader and a Material – we’ll consider the Select Material here, though the Shader works the same way.

The Corona Select Material lets you connect multiple materials to it, and then choose which should be active in the render using a radio button. In effect, this means that the table in our previous example will carry its own “mini-library” of materials with it – you only need one copy of the scene, one copy of the object, and you can’t accidentally delete any of those materials. You could even merge that object into another scene, and it would take that collection of materials with it.

You can even keyframe the results, using the Current Index field – this lets you automate the process of rendering out the different Materials by creating the changes as a simple animation, and then rendering all the frames of that animation, without having to manually change the Material and re-render.

You can also use the Select Shader instead, to get the same functionality for bitmaps, procedural shaders etc., in a single material. All of this opens up a lot of possibilities, for what seems like a deceptively simple addition!

MultiShader

The Corona Multi Shader lets you randomize colors or shaders across objects, for example so you can instantly make each blade of grass a different color even though they all use the same material, etc.

In its simplest form, the Multi Shader randomly applies a different solid color from the list you create inside it. You can vary the colors, and the number of items on the list.

Things get more interesting when you connect different shaders in to each slot, rather than just use the solid colors. These can either be entirely different textures (bitmaps or procedural shaders) or they could be the same texture passed through different Filter or Corona Color Correct shaders to vary brightness, saturation, etc.

Last, but not least, you can connect up only one texture to the Multi Shader, and use its inbuilt Hue and Gamma randomizations to get different results for each object.

The final part of the flexibility of the Multi Shader comes from the ability to change how it randomizes the colors or shaders – one of the most useful is by Mesh Element. A mesh Element is one contiguous triangle group, and a prime example would be randomizing the color of each individual leaf on a tree (where the leaves are not separate scattered objects, but are sub-objects in one mesh). Other examples might be floorboards, wall or roofing tiles, and more.

Note: the UVWRandomizer now also includes the option to use Mesh Element and Object Buffer ID mode.

Corona Sky object and shader

There is a new Corona Sky object, which replaces the use of the Corona Sky tag on a native Cinema 4D sky object. This new Corona Sky object lets you set up multiple environments, which you can then use in LightMix so that one render can contain different times of day or different lighting conditions.

The Corona Sky object has three Types to choose from – “Physical sky” uses the Corona Sky shader, with all the parameters there in the Sky object; “Simple color” uses one single solid color for the environment; and “Shader / HDRI” which lets you load in an HDRI image directly (no need for a Corona Light Material), or load in any shader such as Noise etc. to use as your environment.

One thing to note, if you want to use multiple Sky objects in the same scene, you will need to disable the Adaptive Light Solver (previously called the New Light Solver). Basically, you trade the speed boost of the Adaptive Light Solver for the extra freedom to have multiple light set ups in just one render.

SMALLER IMPROVEMENTS

  • Compatibility with Cinema 4D R21 (also backported to Corona Renderer 4 in Hotfix 3)
  • Start and Stop buttons have been added to the Corona viewport IR control panel
  • Support for the Variation shader in the Corona Node Material Editor – The native Variation Shader now has the useful parameters visible in the Corona Node Material Editor
  • Sampling focus pass (lighter areas show where Corona is focusing the most processing, so you can easily identify the areas that are the most difficult to calculate and will take longest to clean up)
  • Added support for the Cinema 4D Background object. Note: if you want to use the Background object along with a Corona Sky, disable “Visible Directly” for the Corona Sky – our skies are additive, so will blend with the Background object otherwise
  • Added Shadowcatcher Illuminator option for Corona Lights (previously only available in the Corona Light Material)
  • Improved Render stamp legibility
  • Render stamp UI now lists all possible tokens that can be used in the stamp
  • Render stamp pass added to the Corona Multipass options – this allows you to save render information such as passes, time, noise, memory used, etc. along with your render, but without it being embedded in the Beauty pass
  • Added an option to save a copy of the scene with any Corona Shared shaders (used in the Corona Node Material editor) transformed into regular copied shaders – while we are continuing to improve Shared shaders, this may be useful as a workaround in the meantime:
  • Added a warning which is shown when there is a NaN (invalid pixel value) in the renderer image. This warning has a link to the helpdesk so that you can easily let us know about the problem by filing a bug report
  • Faster IR restarts in scenes with CoronaSun(s)
  • UVWRandomizer: The “Texture tag index” has been renamed to “Material tag index”, to match naming conventions in Cinema 4D R21
  • Bloom & Glare progress bar in CIE (from core)
  • Copy to clipboard in CIE (from core)
  • You can now instantly toggle any layer in a Corona Layered Material on and off (previously, you would have to use the Amount slider to swap between 0 and 1)
  • It’s now possible to use materials in include/exclude list in material override (previously, it was only possible to add objects to the include/exclude list)
    This makes it easier than ever to exclude all portals, all windows, etc. simply by including your portal or glass materials in this list. Note that it also works as expected for materials applied using a Polygon Selection Tag.
  • Fixed exclusion list in the material override when adding complex generators (e.g. Extrude)
  • Improved text in checkboxes for enabling/disabling caustics (for extra clarity, the wording is now “Generate caustics from environment” rather than the previous “Enable caustics from environment”)
  • Added “About & Licensing” button at the bottom of the Preferences menu – this means that the About & Licensing can be opened in the Team Render client to manually handle licensing (note that in the main Cinema 4D program, the About can still be opened from directly under the Corona menu too)
  • “Use high quality filtering” was merged into the image filters dropdown list as “High Quality” (rather than being a separate checkbox)
  • Improved detection of C4D installation path in installer (Windows only) – for example, when there were multiple installs of one version of Cinema 4D (but different sub-versions)
  • Changed directory structure in the folder created by the “Unpack” method in the installer
  • Added an initial implementation of OpenGL previews in the Cinema 4D viewport for Corona Materials; currently, these are off by default while the functionality is improved in a later release (you can enable them in the Corona Global Preferences dialog if you wish)
  • Fixed parsing of environment introduced by a generator in IR (e.g. C4D Physical Sky)
  • Fixed parsing of stage object in IR
  • Fixed problem with the Corona menu not being present in the Cinema 4D Legacy menu in Cinema 4D R21
    Corona VFB now displays the Cinema 4D plugin version (previously, it showed the Corona core version)

BUG FIXES

General Fixes

  • Fixed the Corona AO and Wire shaders, so that changes made to them (color, distance, etc) update in IR without restarting IR
  • Fixed IR sometimes not updated after texture change with C4D bitmap
  • Materials with Corona Shared shaders now should render properly in TeamRender (note: currently this works only when a render is started from the full Cinema 4D, rather than when started from the TeamRender Server for example; we’ll work on those other scenarios in future releases, to find fixes for them too!)
  • “Generate caustics from environment” now properly updates in IR
  • Fixed disabling caustics in Corona Light material used for environment
  • Render Regions are now persistent between renders, and are saved with the scene file
  • Render Regions now work with Team Render
  • Fixed the alpha mode in Interactive Rendering in the Cinema 4D viewport
  • Fixed world-space mapping for heterogeneous medium when used as a global medium
  • Fixed the SSS material rendering wrong when inside glass with Refraction Glossiness of <1 when caustics were enabled for the glass material
  • Corona Multishader: The “Material ID” and “Object buffer ID” modes now map the first row to an ID of 1 (to fit the native Cinema 4D numbering for these)

Crash Fixes

  • Fixed some crashes caused by caustics solver
  • Fixed crash when instancing a hair object (note: instanced hair objects still cannot be rendered however, but they no longer crash)
  • Fixed IR crash in scenes with a very deep hierarchy
  • Fixed crashes in scenes with several shared shaders in hierarchy
  • Fixed crash when loading scenes that include 3rd party shaders (which were created in the Node Material Editor) when the relevant 3rd party plugin is no longer installed
  • Fixed crash when shutting down Cinema 4D after rendering a scene that included the Shadowcatcher

Licensing Fixes

  • Fixes in license activation in some specific cases

Corona Renderer 5 for 3ds Max

Major Features

2.5D Displacement

The new 2.5D Displacement will help you make the most of your RAM, offering substantial savings on memory usage. 2.5D Displacement is the default in all new scenes, and if you open an existing scene you can choose to instantly and automatically swap over and take advantage of those memory savings!

In the full size comparison, you can see the render stamp for each render. Here, Corona Renderer 5 used around 24% less RAM, took 12.6% less render time, and all this with more detail in the displacement geometry.

2.5D Displacement allows the use of a smaller Screen or World Size value, which means more detail in the geometry created by displacement while still needing less memory.

Loading an existing scene will ask if you want to swap to this new displacement. If you choose yes, then the Screen Size value for the scene will be adjusted automatically – for example, if your existing scene had a Screen Size of 3, it will automatically be adjusted to a value of 2 (you can of course make further adjustments to it yourself if needed). If you manually set up the new 2.5D displacement, setting Screen Size to two thirds of its previous value is a good guide, the same as the automatic set up would do.

2.5D Displacement also offers significant savings on Parsing Time.

From our tests, we have found:

  • Geometry processing can be up to 3 to 4 times faster on average, but up to 20 times faster in some extreme cases
  • Rendering speed gets a few percent of an increase on average, but up to 3 times faster in scenes with heavy displacement
  • Uses only half the memory on average, but up to 10 times less memory in some extreme cases

Please note – all our tests and all feedback from users so far has shown that 2.5D displacement is far better than the old displacement. Unless we hear of any experiences that contradict this, we plan at some point in the future to remove the old displacement from Corona Renderer and leave only the 2.5D displacement.

Known Current Limitations:

  • Using a CoronaLightMtl on an object which has 2.5D displacement may give undesired results – you can read this article for more information
  • 2.5D displacement does not work with the Fast mode of the Rounded Corners map (only where displacement is applied to the same object as a Rounded Corners map; Fast mode will still work for all objects without displacement applied, even if 2.5D displacement is enabled)

Caustics Optimizations

Caustics have been optimized, and you can simply load any existing scene and you will find it renders faster and requires less memory (or of course get those benefits in any new scene you create)

In the full size comparison, by simply opening the scene and rendering with no changes, Corona Renderer 5 saved 48% memory, and needed around 8% less render time.

(One thing you will note in all these comparisons is that the caustics intensity has changed slightly with Corona Renderer 5, due to more accurate calculations).

corona render 3ds v5 prism

The above prism scene (Adam Iwackowski, quadrays.com) is almost nothing but caustics, so we can narrow down the performance gains from the caustics improvements alone (rather than gains from geometry parsing, instancing, etc.). Here we see that Corona Renderer 5 saves 16% memory, and needs 31% less render time.

Caustics have also been improved with multiple lights:

In this example – also almost pure caustics – we see a 25% less RAM and 23% less render time required.

Caustics now also respect the Include/Exclude list of lights, so in addition to the usual effects of excluding an object from a light, that object will also no longer create reflective or refractive caustics from that light.

Conversely, if you create an Include list, then only objects in that list will generate reflective and refractive caustics from that light (in addition to the usual effects of adding objects to the Include list for the light).

This can be used for:

  • Artistic purposes, to get a desired result
  • Control over multiple objects that use the same material (rather than create separate materials with refractive caustics on and off)
  • Optimizations to render times by removing objects that generate some caustics which do not contribute significantly to the result (do keep in mind that you are excluding the object from ALL interactions with that light, not just the caustics aspects of that light – you could of course duplicate the light source, to have one “caustics only” light that only generates caustics for particular objects)

Corona Material Library Updates

17 new basic Hair materials and 10 new Skin materials were added to the material library.

Also, the tiling size of normal maps in the Oak Honey Floor and Oak Northland Floor materials was fixed, as was an inconsistent tiling size in the Stone -> Cobblestone Herringbone material.

Hair Optimizations

Corona now only needs half as much memory when rendering hair (Max native, Ornatrix, or Hair Farm). This translates into an overall 20% memory saving for the scene, once you add in the memory used by Max and the hair software. These updates also remove some artifacts.

Open full size comparison

Other Specific Optimizations

The performance of the CoronaColorCorrect has been optimized, and Bloom & Glare is now 10% faster and uses 20% less memory.

Open full size comparison

Overall Optimizations

We’ve done a lot of work on generally optimizing Corona Renderer. This includes things like a rewrite of the geometry processing, a switch to the latest Embree library, optimizing the calculation of mesh normals, optimizing geometry processing time and IR restarts in scenes with larger number of instances, and more.

These mean that all Corona Renderer scenes will be faster/need less memory (not just those using displacement or caustics).

This means you will see benefits without making any changes to your scene settings at all:

Open full sized comparison

In the example above, Corona Renderer 5 uses around 9.6% less memory, and takes 36% less render time, all without making any changes (the scene wasn’t even converted to 2.5D Displacement).

Updated the NVIDIA GPU AI denoiser to the latest version

  • Better compatibility with other plugins which also use NVIDIA CUDA and OptiX frameworks
  • Improved performance with Turing GPUs
  • Better error reporting
  • Requires NVIDIA GPU driver version 418.81 or newer

Please note – NVIDIA has also removed support for Kepler-based GPUs, and their AI denoiser now needs Maxwell-based cards or newer. This is not something we can control of course, but we want all our users to be aware before installing. Conversely, in our tests some Maxwell-based mobile GPUs can now run the NVIDIA AI denoiser, where they couldn’t previously.

SMALLER IMPROVEMENTS

  • When a material with a RaySwitch map in the Diffuse slot is shown the viewport, the map from the Direct Visibility override is now displayed instead of the map from the GI override
  • Improved text rendering in the Render Stamp
    We’ve used an improved font for the Render Stamp, which will make it easier to read in all images but especially on high resolution monitors. (If you want to change the size of the font, you can use the string options)
  • “Setup LightMix” button added to the multiple environment maps dialog
  • Optimized the Corona Distance Map when Corona Scatter is plugged into it as a distance-from object. Brings up to a 30% speed increase in extreme cases
  • Optimized scene parsing time for scenes with a high number of instances, up to twice as fast in scenes with around 5 million instances
  • High Quality Image Filtering – moved from being a separate checkbox into the dropdown list of filter types
  • Changing render regions now resumes IR if it had previously stopped by hitting the IR pass limit
  • “[IR]” tag added to the VFB title bar, to show that the image was rendered with IR rather than a final render
  • Faster IR restarts in scenes with a CoronaSun (or more than one CoronaSun)
  • The Corona Color Picker now displays the Corona icon in its title bar
  • Added a help button to the Autosave path which explains the special tokens that can be used (similar to those used in the render stamp)
  • Copy clipboard option added to the CIE
  • Bloom & Glare progress bar now added to the CIE (just like the one already in the VFB)
  • Updated the Intel CPU AI denoiser to version 1.0 – this fixes the appearance of “ghosts” in the denoising for objects that are not visible in the scene due to a lack of lighting, and lowers memory consumption for higher resolutions (2K or higher)
  • Added a warning which is shown when there is a NaN (invalid pixel value) in the renderer image. This warning has a link to the helpdesk so that you can easily let us know about the problem by filing a bug report
  • Added “Unpacking and installing” message to the installer, so that you will know that something is still happening after the NVIDIA AI denoiser or the Material Library are downloaded
  • When doing an Unpack install, the Installer now detects when the selected directory contains any files, and asks if you would like to override them or cancel the unpacking
  • Changed the directory structure for the installation of Corona Renderer – we no longer install DLLs into the 3ds Max root folder, but instead install those to the Program Files folder
  • Added an option to disable the “Startup scripts enabled” warning in 3ds Max
  • Added support for SiNi Scatter

BUG FIXES

General Fixes

  • Fixed wrong color of toggleable buttons
  • Fixed the Proxy “Hide out of range” animation option (it was hiding the proxy too early)
  • CXRs now saves information about the camera used at render time (VR, type, etc.)
    – This allows the CIE to computer Bloom&Glare correctly for different camera types (Note, this only applies to CXRs saved from Corona 5 and newer of course – existing CXRs will not have this information added to them retromagically!)
  • Fixed normals that were wrongly computed in some cases
  • Fixed radio buttons disappearing from different sections in the Corona Camera
  • Fixed .conf file parsing error on opening Render Settings or starting a render, which occurred after certain values were saved as defaults in the Render Settings (e.g. when Image Filter Type is set to Symmetric Tent by default)
  • Fixed not being able to reload a .conf file saved from the CIE, which happened in some cases (e.g. when the NVIDIA or Intel AI denoisers are selected)
  • Fixed Falloff map in camera space not reacting to camera movement
  • Fixed Corona Camera Tilt and Shift not being updated on opening a scene
  • Fixed the VFB stopping updating after drag and dropping LightMix colors
  • Fixed caustics disappearing with more passes in some scenes
  • Fixed the SSS material rendering wrong when inside glass with Refraction Glossiness of <1 when caustics were enabled for the glass material
  • Fixed the Corona Sky map not working correctly with multiple Suns in the scene
  • Fixed LayeredMtl layers affecting displacement
  • When LightMix is recreated using the LightMix setup dialog, the LightMix configuration (colors and enables) will be reset to defaults
  • Fixed using saturation -1 not resulting in completely grayscale image
  • Fixed autosave saving material editor renders
  • Fixed appearance of unwanted hard edges when rendering overlapping scattering media
  • Fixed pan & zoom rendering wrong offset when zooming in
  • Fixed .scn and .cxr file extension associations stopping working when the installation path to Corona Standalone or Corona Image Editor was changed from previous installation
  • Fixed IR freezing when using ProBoolean
  • Fixed artifacts when using a dark environment map
  • Fixed result being automatically saved to render history when the render is cancelled
  • Corona Color Picker now updates the color as soon as you start modifying the hexadecimal color representation

Crash Fixes

  • Fixed crash when switching a CoronaLight on or off during IR
  • Fixed 3ds Max sometimes crashing during parsing when the point cache modifier is used
  • Fixed crashes when loading malformed proxy files
  • Fixed crash when NVIDIA AI libraries cannot be loaded
  • Fixed crash when rendering the 3ds Max volume light effect (in atmosphere effects)
  • Fixed crash when opening some scenes using CoronaCamera auto tilt
  • Fixed crash when old displacement with water level is applied on an object with unusual geometry
  • Fixed rare crash when rendering an isolated object
  • Fixed random crashes when (de)selecting Corona objects, maps, and materials

Installer Fixes

  • Fixed installer reporting an incomplete size after successfully downloading the NVIDIA AI denoiser or the Material Library (e.g. “218.9 MB / 220 MB”)

Licensing Fixes

  • Fixed Corona so that it looks for the Licensing Server on all network interfaces
  • The “Activate License” button in the System tab of the Render Setup now does not need to be clicked multiple times to get it to activate
  • The System tab in the Render Setup no longer claims there is no license when one has been acquired from the Licensing Server
  • Fixed license activation not working in some cases when running Corona on the same machine as the Licensing Server

Corona Renderer 4 for Cinema 4D

  • Caustics – We think these are the best caustics in any render engine!
    – Easy to set up with just a click or two
    – No complex parameters
    – Fast to render
    – Handles reflective caustics and refractive caustics
    – Refractive caustics can include dispersion (hello Dark Side of the Moon!)
    – Each light source (including suns and environments) can have caustics enabled or disabled
    – Works as expected with LightMix and other Corona tools
  • Docked IR Viewport – If you prefer to run IR in a Cinema 4D viewport rather than in the VFB, then this update has what you need!
  • Object picking in the render window – in both the docked IR viewport and the VFB, you can now left-click to select objects right in the render. In the docked IR viewport, you can also move, scale and rotate objects there too and you can also use the regular Cinema 4D controls to adjust the perspective or camera view (things that are not possible in the 3ds Max version 😉 )
  • Set Depth of Field focus point in the render window – In the VFB render (IR or final), you can right-click to set the point which should be in focus when using Depth of Field.
  • Intel AI Denoising – works on any CPU (not just Intel), giving you access to AI denoising for final renders that can be done on any machine.
  • Inside Volume mode – for true 3D volumetric materials using the Corona Volume shader.
  • Fisheye mode for cameras – perfect for both interior and exterior renders, any Corona camera can be given a fisheye lens, with all the controls you need to get the result you want. This was developed by the Corona for Cinema 4D team, then ported to 3ds Max.
  • Stacked displacements – stacking materials on an object now gives the expected results from displacement.
  • Multiple Suns for LightMix – now you can set up different times of day in one render, and swap between them in LightMix.
  • New Image Filtering – makes noise less noticeable to the eye, getting away from the “pixel-by-pixel” look that CGI noise has. In effect this speeds up rendering, as you will need less passes or time to get to a satisfying visual quality.
  • New Light Solver – now fully functional in all cases, the New Light Solver is now enabled by default, and gives great improvements to render times.

 

Corona Renderer 4 for 3ds Max

Some of the highlights of what Corona Renderer brings to 3ds Max:

  • Caustics – We think these are the best caustics in any render engine!
    – Easy to set up with just a click or two
    – No complex parameters
    – Fast to render
    – Handles reflective caustics and refractive caustics
    – Refractive caustics can include dispersion (hello Dark Side of the Moon!)
    – Each light source can have caustics enabled or disabled
    – Works as expected with LightMix and other Corona tools
  • Pick objects, and set DOF focus point in the rendered image – works in both the VFB (during IR, final render, or after rendering is complete) and in the docked viewport IR.
  • Fisheye mode for cameras – perfect for both interior and exterior renders, any Corona camera can be given a fisheye lens, with all the controls you need to get the result you want.
  • Intel AI Denoiser – works on any CPU (not just Intel), giving you access to AI denoising for final renders that can be done on any machine.
  • Multiple Suns and Environments for LightMix – you can now add multiple Corona Suns to a scene, and set up a list of multiple environments, which you can then swap or blend between in LightMix.
  • Rest (unassigned) LightSelect layer in LightMix can now be denoised and saved like any other LightSelect – no more noise for those elements that can’t be added to a separate LightMix layer on their own (or that you simply don’t want to add to a separate layer).
  • Improvements to overlapping volumetric media – so those clouds that overlapped will now look as expected!
  • New Image Filtering – makes noise less noticeable to the eye, getting away from the “pixel-by-pixel” look that CGI noise has. In effect this speeds up rendering, as you will need less passes or time to get to a satisfying visual quality.
  • Adaptive Light Solver – now fully functional in all cases, the Adaptive Light Solver is now enabled by default, and gives great improvements to render times.

Major New Features in v4

Caustics

Not too long ago, having fast, easy to use GI was the holy grail for render engines. Now that has been achieved, the question is – have we reached the ultimate in realism, or is there some aspect of the real world that is still not fast and easy to create in our renders?

Open full sized comparison

The answer is that renders are missing caustics – sometimes subtle, sometimes bold, they appear in a great many places and we are used to seeing them in the real world, whether that is the classic examples that first spring to mind like water in swimming pools or light through a glass of water, to ones we may not think of such as sun reflecting off a bathroom mirror onto the opposite wall, or sunlight off the body and wheel rims on a car, or from the myriad of windows on a building onto the environment around it.

Corona Renderer 4 aims to change all that, and make caustics easy to add, simple to control, and fast to render.

Caustics from water, Image by Giona Andreani - gionacg.wordpress.com
Image by Giona Andreani – gionacg.wordpress.com

Setup is easy – just enable the new Fast Caustics Solver, and instantly you will get reflective caustics from all materials in your scene. Then for any material with refraction, where you want refractive caustics, just enable the Caustics check box in that material. If you want the caustics to split white light into component colors, just enable the Dispersion effect in that material.

Caustics with dispersion from a prism - ccene provided by Rakete GmbH Munich
Scene provided by Rakete GmbH Munich

You can then choose to disable particular light sources from affecting caustics, if you want to optimize render speed by keeping the calculations only to those light sources that will have a major effect. One thing to note if you are using multiple environment maps is that you can only enable or disable caustics for all of those at once, and not individually.

AND THAT’S IT. That’s pretty much a whole tutorial on how to use caustics, in just a couple of paragraphs. You don’t need to know or change any strange and unusual settings, just click on a few checkboxes and you are good to go!

Caustics does not require many settings!
One checkbox enables reflective caustics throughout the scene, then one checkbox enables refractive caustics per material – and that’s about all you need!

Caustics will respond as expected to both displacement and bump mapping, and will work as expected in LightMix (any color and intensity changes you make to a light source will affect the caustics from that light source).

Change light color or intensity of a light in LightMix, and the caustics change too!
Change light color or intensity of a light in LightMix, and the caustics change too!

If you want extra control over the caustics, you can add a CShading_Caustics render element, and check the “Only in caustics element” option under the caustics settings. This will let you composite the Caustics layer in post, so that you can mask it, make it brighter or darker, and so on.

One thing we want to be clear about, just to make sure you don’t get your hopes too high – “fast to render” does not mean renders will take the same amount of time with and without caustics! No matter how efficiently you do extra work, it is extra work, and so will always take longer; that’s true for you, and for Corona Renderer too!

It is highly scene dependent, on many factors, such as:
– Are you using reflective caustics only, or refractive caustics as well?
– Do the refractive caustics include dispersion or not?
– How many materials in the scene have refractive caustics?
– How many light sources have caustics enabled and so are considered in the calculations?
– How much “screen space” the caustics occupy?
– …and so on.

As a very approximate guideline, when including refractive caustics, it may take 2 or 3 times the render time compared to the same scene with caustics disabled

Object and DOF Focus point picking in the render

The VFB has a new Pick mode, and when this is enabled (during IR, final rendering, or after rendering):

Right click in the VFB (or docked IR) to choose the option to set the DOF focus point
Right click in the VFB (or docked IR) to choose the option to set the DOF focus point
  • Left click will select the object you click on. It also supports +CTRL to add to the selection, +ALT to remove from the selection, and +SHIFT to alternately add and remove from the selection.
  • Right click opens a popup menu which allows you to set the current camera’s focus distance to the clicked point (available only for perspective cameras). When using Depth of Field, this means the point you clicked on will be in sharp focus.

Note – There is a current limitation that you can’t pick objects/set focus within render regions

The docked IR viewport also has similar functionality, but without any Pick mode needing to be enabled:

CTRL+Left click in the Corona IR viewport to select objects
CTRL+Left click in the Corona IR viewport to select objects
  • Left click will select the object you click on, just as with the VFB.
  • Right click opens up a popup menu which lets you set the focus point, just as with the VFB.
  • The right click menu also contains other options previously found under the Menu button, such as stop, restart, copy to Max, copy to clipboard, etc.
  • As part of this change, the menu button in the top right of the viewport has been changed to let you swap to any other Max viewport (note that this disables Corona IR in the viewport, of course).

Fisheye Camera

Scene provided by 3darcspace Studio (3darcspace.com)
Scene provided by 3darcspace Studio

Does exactly what you would expect – adds a Fisheye projection mode to the Corona Camera, which has all the settings you need to fine-tune your results to meet your needs whether you are rendering interiors, exteriors, or anything else!

Intel Open Image Denoiser

The Intel Open Image Denoiser is an AI denoiser that runs on any CPU (despite the name, you don’t have to have an Intel CPU!). It is much faster than the Corona High Quality Denoiser, though not fast enough to use in IR so it is for final rendering only.

Open full size comparison

As with any AI denoiser, it has some advantages and disadvantages compared to the Corona High Quality denoiser – while significantly faster, it does mean that the AI can generate detail where there was none, and that running it on the same frame twice could produce different results so it may not be recommended for animations.

Multiple Corona Suns and Environments for LightMix

This new functionality lets you set up and use multiple Corona Suns and multiple environments, letting you use LightMix for more extreme changes such as going from day to night, all in one render.

Since you can add separate suns, you can now position the suns at the appropriate angle for the time of day (simply changing the color of one sun was not going to make it look like a realistic evening set up while the sun was still overhead like noon!)

Different angles of sun and different environment maps can be used, to give multiple times of day in just one render.
Different angles of sun and different environment maps can be used, to give multiple times of day in just one render

To add multiple environments, you use the new “Multiple maps (LightMix)” checkbox in the Scene settings in the Render Setup dialog, and then you can open the list of environments to add as many maps as you like.

One thing to note, to use this new functionality you will need to disable the Adaptive Light Solver. Basically, you trade the speed boost of the Adaptive Light Solver for the extra freedom to have multiple light set ups in just one render. Also, with the multiple suns and environments active, your Beauty pass will likely not be usable, but that’s ok as the functionality is intended for LightMix!

More examples of different times of day, all from one render.
Again, different times of day, all from one render.

While intended for LightMix, if you wanted to render Tatooine with its two suns, now you can!

LightMix Improvements

As well as the new multi-sun and environments, there are other improvements to LightMix. The “Rest (unassigned)” layer can now be denoised and saved just like any other layer. This is ideal where you had light materials that couldn’t be placed in their own layer (such as Light materials with Emit Light disabled), or where you just didn’t want to assign light sources to a specific layer.

The "Rest(unassigned)" LightSelect can now be denoised
The “Rest(unassigned)” LightSelect can now be denoised

All LightSelects will have denoising enabled by default (only when denoising is enabled overall, that is).

Lastly for LightMix, you can now have more than one LightMix element displayed in the VFB. At present, all LightMix elements use the same settings, but this is in preparation for future updates which enable you to create multiple LightMix setups in the scene (rather than saving and loading the different set ups as .conf files).

Corona Select Map and Material

Have you ever had a scene where you needed to save three different materials for a sofa? Did you leave the materials in the Slate material editor and hope you never clicked “Clear View”? Did you save three different versions of the scene? Did you create three copies of the sofa and switch which one was visible?

Now all that can be handled much more easily. The Corona Select functionality comes in two forms, a Map and a Material, and we’ll consider the Select Material here though the Map works the same way.

The Corona Select Material in action.
The sofa object can now carry its own set of varied materials with it (and maps too rather than full materials)

The Corona Select Material lets you connect up multiple materials, and then choose which should be active through a radio button. In effect, this means that the sofa in our previous example will carry its own “mini-library” of materials with it – you only need one copy of the scene, one copy of the object, and you can’t accidentally delete any of those materials. You could even merge that object into another scene, and it would take that collection of materials with it.

The radio button can be keyframed, which means you could set up three frames of animation, each with one of three radio options selected, and then set the machine to render frames 0 to 1 to create a version with each material in it without having to manually change the radio button and start rendering each time. Or of course, create an animation where the material on an object changes at set points in the animation.

As you can see, it opens up a lot of possibilities, for what seems like a deceptively simple addition!

Improvements to Corona Scatter

Several improvements have been made to Corona Scatter. First, rather than have three maps to define scaling in the x, y and z, Scatter now uses just one map interpreted in RGB, where the red component affects the scale in the X axis, green for the Y axis, and blue for the Z axis.

Also, new modes have been added for how to interpret scale maps. The Map Fixed mode is the default, and there the 0 to 1 color range in the map (greyscale, or separately for the R, G and B for an RGB map) will correspond to the “From” and “To” values. In other words, the color value will correspond to the size of the scattered object.

Corona Scatter using a grayscale map in "Map fixed" mode
Scatter using a grayscale map in “Map fixed” mode

The second mode is the Random Amount mode. In this mode, the 0 color represents no randomization at all (so the scattered object will be its original size), and the 1 color value represents maximum randomization, so the scattered object will vary somewhere within the full range of the “From” and “To” values. In this mode, a scattered object may be a different size from another scattered object, even where the same color value was used (except for 0 color values, where all objects will be their original size)

Corona Scatter, using the "Random amount" mode, with the same grayscale map as input
Using the “Random amount” mode, with the same grayscale map as input

The third mode is the Legacy mode, provided solely for compatibility with scenes created in earlier versions of Corona. In this mode, the random scaling is calculated between the “From” and “To” values, and then the result is multiplied by the color value in the map – this means that a color value of 0 will always give an object size of 0, in other words, an invisible object with no scale at all. Other than for preserving results from earlier scenes, there is no need to use this mode.

Using the RGB mode lets you control scaling in the X, Y and Z independently:

Corona Scatter, using an RGB map in fixed mode, allows independent control of the X, Y and Z scaling from one map.
Using an RGB map in fixed mode, allows independent control of the X, Y and Z scaling from one map.

To learn more, read our online article about how to use the new Corona Scatter modes.

BONUS INFORMATION – Don’t forget you can use the Corona Distance map as the input to the map scaling, allowing scattered objects to grow taller close to other objects, e.g. grass around a tree where the lawn mower wasn’t able to get so close.

Improvements to overlapping media

The biggest effect of this change is to ensure that overlapping volumetric media, such as clouds, now render as expected.

The change does also affect situations where a refractive material overlaps itself. Because this looks “different” to the previous versions of Corona, when you load an old scene you will be given the option to switch to the new, more correct calculations, or stay with the older method if you need things to look exactly as they did before. Note that the old method will not look wrong to the eye, but be assured that the new results are the more-correct!

High Quality Image sample filtering

The way noise looks in a render is often the biggest giveaway that it is a CG image. It has a particular, harsh look, varying pixel by pixel, so it is very obvious to the eye. The new High Quality Image Filtering option “smooths out” the noise, making it less harsh and obvious, so that you can use less passes to reach a visually acceptable level of noise (especially when followed by the Corona High Quality denoiser).

Note: Neither of the AI denoisers will work with the new filtering, so it is automatically turned off if either of those is selected. As with all things AI, the software has been “trained” on particular examples of “noisy version of the image vs. clean version of the image” and that training has been with the old, harsh type of noise. We are working with Intel to have their AI denoiser retrained to work with our High Quality Image Filtering, so hopefully that restriction will be removed in the future!

Adaptive Light Solver

The Adaptive Light Solver has been in Corona Renderer for the last few versions named as the “New Light Solver” – now that the last polish has been done to it, it is the default solver going forward and has been renamed. It gives significant improvements in render speed, particularly where there are lots of light sources, or lots of objects occluding light sources.

Note: It is recommended to always use the Adaptive Light Solver, and only disable it when you want to take advantage of multiple suns and environments in LightMix.

Memory Optimizations

We are always working on optimizing Corona Renderer’s use of memory, and here are the updates in Corona Renderer 4:

  • Corona Proxy now has a lower memory consumption when “Keep in RAM” is disabled. The only thing to note is that Full Mesh visualization mode requires “Keep in RAM” to be enabled (it is automatically forced on if you choose Full Mesh visualization – so best just to use Full Mesh visualization when setting up the scene, and switch to any other visualization mode with “Keep in RAM” disabled for rendering)
  • Displacement computations now have a lower memory consumption.
  • Added a checkbox for turning on memory optimizations of geometry, in the Performance section of the Render Setup dialog. Note that this option was previously in the Development/Experimental section as the “LowMem” option, and the functionality remains the same – it will reduce memory requirements by 5 to 10%, but at the cost of rendering being 5 to 10% slower (which is better than the speed loss from running out of RAM altogether).

SMALLER IMPROVEMENTS


VFB Improvements

  • Checkbox for enabling/disabling denoising (in the VFB and CIE)
    This is useful for quickly comparing the denoised and non-denoised image, usually when checking whether denoising has blurred any details too much. It is enabled by default (if denoising is turned on, that is!). It works only in regular rendering, so it does not work in interactive rendering. Note that denoising will be calculated when selected, whether this checkbox is on or off – the checkbox only controls the result you are viewing in the VFB.
Enable and disable denoising in the VFB with a single click.
  • By default, images stored in render history are now displayed with their original postprocessing parameters instead of using the current VFB parameters, so the render history can be used to compare different versions of tone mapping, denoising etc. A checkbox allows you to enable the previous functionality where all history renders are displayed using the current post-processing settings, and not the settings in use when they were saved.
  • New spinner added that lets you upscale an image rendered in IR. Located in the System settings window, it will render at a lower resolution than the VFB then upscale the image to fit – for example, with an upscaling of 2, it will render at half the size of the VFB then upscale the image to fit the VFB. This may be useful on High-DPI displays.
  • Added green-magenta tint to the VFB, CoronaCamera and CoronaColorCorrect map. This is a common adjustment in photo-processing apps, and it allows full adjustment of the white balance.
  • Bloom and Glare progress bar added to the VFB.
  • The “Show VFB” button in the Render Settings now opens the Corona VFB with the correct resolution and render regions, even before the first render was started.
  • Added an option to save and load .conf files in the Corona Camera, same as in the Corona VFB. This allows for saving and loading post-processing and tone mapping presets, and freely exchanging them between the VFB, the camera, and the CIE (in any direction).
  • Speed of Bloom & Glare optimized (now around 5% faster).
  • When resizing the VFB by double clicking the rendered image, the maximum size of the VFB is now limited by the resolution of the monitor which is currently displaying the VFB.

Reworked the VFB render region UI:

  • The region button is now sticky. This is a first step in transforming VFB to using separate function modes. VFB stays in this mode until you deselect the region button or select a different mode (e.g. Pick mode).
  • Regions are now editable only in the “Region” mode, and in this mode the regions are drawn thicker for easier adjustment; when not in edit mode they are drawn thinner and half-transparent to make them less obtrusive and distracting.
  • When multiple fuzzy regions overlap, only the outline is drawn now (fuzzy regions are where the outside of the render region is “feathered and blended” into the original render, represented by a green area around the render region – you can draw these by holding CTRL and click-and-dragging at the edge of a region).

IR Improvements

  • If motion blur is disabled, IR is no longer restarted when shutter speed of CoronaCamera changes.
  • If depth of field is disabled, IR is no longer restarted when F-stop of CoronaCamera changes.
  • Changing global f-stop now restarts IR if DOF is enabled.
  • Changing global shutter speed no longer causes scene reparsing in IR when motion blur is disabled.

Scatter Improvements

  • The + button can now be used to add Corona Volume Grid objects to the list of objects to be scattered.
  • Corona Scatter now supports maps which use Object XYZ mapping, as well as the previous World XYZ mapping.
  • Corona Scatter can use animated maps in the density map, without noticeable viewport slowdown.
  • Performance improved when using Density map and Max Limit of instances (scattering of older scenes is not affected unless the Legacy checkbox is disabled).

General Improvements

  • Preserving materials from the Material Override now also works for multi/sub materials.
  • Optimized cancel time (up to 80% faster).
  • Added Hue Shift and Green-Magenta Tint to CoronaColorCorrect map.
  • CoronaColorCorrect map now has an option to use the settings from another CoronaColorCorrect map – this means you can create one CoronaColorCorrect as the master, then you can connect that to as many other CoronaColorCorrects as you choose, allowing the same color correction processing to be applied to multiple maps while only having to adjust the color correction parameters in one place.
  • Corona Bitmap automatically reloads modified texture without the need to constantly check it on hard drive, which fixes freezing / stuttering issues which used to happen under specific conditions.
  • Added more robust inside detection for the CoronaDistanceMap – this mode is now the default.
  • Optimized the CoronaDistanceMap – mesh is reparsed only when rendering (outside of Material Editor). This makes viewport manipulation of related meshes MUCH faster.
  • Optimized opening render settings dialog – more noticeable in newer versions of 3ds Max.
  • Added PhoenixFDOceanTex and PhoenixFDGridTex to the list of maps compatible with Corona.
  • Added support for motion blur for Ornatrix hair.
  • Changed the way installer installs components:
    – All components that do not require additional downloads (i.e. everything except for Material Library and NVIDIA denoiser) are now always reinstalled even if you’re installing the version that is already installed.
    – Material Library and NVIDIA denoiser are still downloaded & reinstalled only if the installed version is different from the one that would be downloaded or if some of their files are missing on the hard drive.

UI IMPROVEMENTS


  • New icons for the CIE, DR server and Licensing server
New Corona icons.
  • Corona color picker now supports alpha value (where applicable)
  • CoronaBitmap will now automatically open file dialog when it is plugged into any bitmap slot in render settings
  • “Export” and “Export+Render” buttons in render settings now remember the last used export path
  • CoronaLights are now drawn in viewport with axis-aligned CoolLines(TM)
  • Render stamp help dialog now can be closed with the “X” button

CoronaColorCorrect map:

  • Histogram controls in curve editor are now disabled when no input map is connected
  • Fixed histogram in the curve editor not updating when input map is added or removed

Improved Autosave

  • Limitation of the maximum number of autosaved files is now respected when render stamp variables are used in the autosave file name (previously, if a render stamp variable was used in the autosave file name, then Corona would save more than the specified maximum number of files).
  • The file counter is resumed from its last value even after restarting Corona.
  • In the case of a final autosave render, the file name suffix is now “end_<counter>” instead of “end<counter>”.

Corona Renderer 3 for Cinema 4D

Some of the highlights of what Corona Renderer brings to Cinema 4D:

  • Interactive Rendering, to make test renders a thing of the past
  • LightMix, to change color and intensity of lights before, during or after rendering
  • the Corona Node Material Editor, to make creating materials easier than ever (any version of Cinema 4D supported by Corona Renderer)
  • Denoising (CPU, and GPU if you have a compatible NVIDIA GPU)
  • Tight integration with Cinema 4D
  • Compatibility with many native Cinema 4D lights and materials
  • Compatibility with Team Render

Corona Renderer 3 for 3ds Max

Some of the highlights:

  • GPU Denoising gives near-instant denoising when using IR (and can be also used for non-interactive rendering).
  • CoronaMultiMap and CoronaUvwRandomizer feature a new randomization by Mesh Element mode.
  • Improved IR performance keeps everything smooth and snappy.
  • Displacement improvements allow you to use lower Displacement settings with the same image quality, lowering memory usage by up to 50%.
  • Various memory optimizations let you save up to 2.5 GB for an 8K render (or more for larger resolutions).
  • A focus on fixing bugs.

Major New Features in v3

GPU Denoising

As part of the overall plan to make Interactive Rendering faster than ever, we implemented NVIDIA’s GPU denoising, which lets you run near-instant denoising on your Interactive Renders!

GPU Denoising

Fast Preview Denoising is enabled by default for interactive rendering (the setting can be found under the Performance tab in the Render Setup if you wish to disable it):

denoiser setup

Please note that this feature requires an NVIDIA GPU installed, and the GPU needs to be Kepler or newer. NVIDIA’s denoiser does not support all mobile GPUs, so this may not work on your laptop.

If you choose, you can use GPU denoising for your final renders too by selecting the “Fast Preview (NVIDIA)” option in the Denoising drop down (Corona “Full Denoising” has been renamed as “High Quality” under these options, if you are looking for it!). You can also use the GPU Denoising in the Corona Image Editor.

If you choose to use this new GPU denoising for final renders, please keep these points in mind:

–  GPU Denoising may blur details and result in artifacts or a “painterly” look to your image. High Quality Denoising uses more precise algorithms to ensure effective denoising while preserving detail in the end result.

In the image below, while it has removed more noise at these early passes, the GPU denoising also loses some detail in the grass and flowers, resulting in a softer, blurred look that may not be desired:

high quality denoising

GPU Denoising

And in the image below, loss of detail can be seen in the texture where the AI denoiser “hallucinates” especially around areas of high contrast, as well as having a blurrier look (of course, this difference reduces with more passes):

statue

statue

– GPU denoising has no temporal consistency, so results may vary from frame to frame for animations, which may cause flickering or other unwanted effects. Of course, it may not, but it is something to keep in mind!

– Your GPU memory will determine the maximum resolution that can be efficiently denoised (as using shared memory will be slower), and the number of render elements being denoised may also play a part in how efficiently GPU denoising can work.

Details:

  • The NVIDIA AI denoiser can be selected as the final denoising mode in the Scene tab of the Render Setup – in this mode, the rendered image is denoised with each VFB refresh.
  • Corona Renderer’s implementation of the NVIDIA denoiser preserves details in reflections and refractions, unlike some other implementations of the denoiser in other software.
  • The NVIDIA AI denoiser can also be enabled separately just for IR in the Performance tab of the Render Setup.
  • The NVIDIA AI denoiser is an optional component in the installer and requires an additional download (similar to the Material Library). This component is pre-selected when a supported NVIDIA GPU is detected on the computer.
  • Denoising time is displayed in the VFB Stats tab.

IR Improvements

IR improvements

  • Optimized IR restarts, making it more responsive.
  • IR restarts with the new light solver are now significantly faster.
  • IR restarts in the Corona VFB are now generally faster (comparable to the docked VFB).

Displacement Improvements

The improvements to displacement result in better image quality without the need to sacrifice render time:

displacement

displacement

Perhaps more importantly, it allows the lowering of Displacement settings to get equivalent quality with faster parsing and lower memory usage. It is on by default in all new scenes, and when loading older scenes, you will be asked whether to switch to the new displacement mode with a click of a button to lower the RAM usage or to preserve the original settings to keep original scene appearance.

In the example scene below, thanks to the new improvements, Displacement quality could be lowered from 1px to 4px with almost no visual difference, reducing memory requirements from 11.6 GB to 5.2 GB.

autobump

autobump

The new processing is disabled when loading a scene saved with a version earlier than Corona Renderer 3 to avoid changes to the scene’s appearance on rendering (a dialog box will let you enable it if you choose).

It is enabled by default in all new scenes, and the default displacement edge size in screen space has been changed from 2px to 3px.

Memory Optimizations

Back in the day, RAM was cheap, so we focused on rendering speed even if this meant higher memory usage. However, the market has changed and RAM now costs a premium, so we’ve revisited Corona Renderer’s memory consumption.

Thanks to a variety of optimizations and improvements, you can expect savings of up to 2.5 GB for an 8K image without having to change any settings (although this will vary by scene, of course).

For testing, we wanted to use a regular scene and not one specially created to maximize memory savings, so we chose the much-loved Benchmark scene and renderer it at 8,000 x 4,500. The test was run using Release Candidate 7.

Corona Renderer 2 required 20.3 GB for an 8K render, while Corona Renderer 3 required 19.6 GB, in this instance saving around 0.7 GB without any changes to the scene or settings.

If we choose to also use the improved displacement on loading the scene, there is a final savings of 6.3 GB without losing any quality – and this scene doesn’t even make heavy use of displacement! You can also notice the improvements from the sharper textures at grazing angles, listed in the smaller changes further down the page, on the ground in the background.

memory saving

memory saving

Summary of Memory Optimizations:

Optimization of random sampler memory usage – High-res images render with less memory. There should be no impact on the amount of noise (noise pattern itself can change).
Reduced Corona Renderer’s geometry memory usage by 16.6%. Note that 3ds Max and Embree still need their own geometry data in memory too, if you are wondering why this does not translate to an overall memory savings of 16.6%!
Reduced memory usage of the new light solver with volumetric media by up to 86% – this brings it into line with memory usage in the old light solver.
Low memory warning now gives a bit more detailed breakdown of Corona Renderer memory usage (split into geometry, textures and frame buffer).

To make it easier to track and breakdown Corona Renderer’s memory usage, we’ve also added new renderstamp variables which let you monitor memory usage at all stages during rendering:

memory stamps

Randomization by Mesh Element

Both the CoronaMultiMap and the CoronaUvwRandomizer now support randomization by Mesh Element (one contiguous triangle group). A prime example would be randomizing the color of each individual leaf on a tree, randomizing different planks in the keg, and randomizing the color of the fruit, all using the MultiMap and randomizing by Mesh Element:

mesh element

mesh element

Or randomizing the marble texture on the tiles using the UvwRandomizer in Mesh Element mode to avoid repetition:

mesh element

mesh element

Support for additional image file formats

Corona Image Editor and Corona Standalone:
Extended the list of file formats which the frame buffer can save to, and when saving the user can now specify the output color depth and whether to include an alpha channel.

CoronaBitmap:
Added support for Kodak Cineon, Adobe PSD Reader, SGI file, RLA image file, and DDS image file formats.

First implementation of Unified Lister

This first implementation of a unified Corona Lister is in place – it lists Corona Scatters and Corona Lights in this release (with more object types to be added in Corona Renderer 4).

unified lister

Improvements

New Light Solver Improvements

  • Optimized the new Light Solver, giving an overall speedup of between 5 – 15%.
  • The initialization of the light solver is now parallelized. The solver is also re-initialized only if some lights changed, making IR restarts significant faster.
  • Improved sampling of translucent objects.
  • Improved light sampling in cases where geometry is very close to a spherical light.
  • Fixed inefficient sampling when the shading normal differs significantly from the geometry normal.
  • Fixed square artifacts that appeared when non-physical lights (invisible or transparent lights) are used in the scene.
  • Fixed the new light solver producing rectangular artifacts when textured lights are used.
  • Fixed NaNs (black pixels) occasionally appearing in the rendered image.
  • Reduced the memory usage for volumetric media (in some cases, down to 14%, an 86% savings compared to the New Light Solver in Corona Renderer 2).
  • Fixed bias when rendering portal hidden behind another portal.
  • Fixed crash in new light solver with extremely bright lights.
  • Fixed a few other occasional crashes.
  • No longer called “Experimental” due to the fixes so it should work in most scenes – however, we have held off on making it the new default for now.

UI Improvements

  • Optimized VFB redraw speed.
  • UI controls in object lists in Scatter have been reorganized to make more space for object names.
  • Unified Look & Feel of Corona Renderer’s warnings/question popups.
  • The Corona Color Picker now remembers the sRGB checkbox state and color range between sessions.
  • Fixed Corona Color Picker not taking into account values entered via keyboard right before OK is clicked.
  • The Corona Camera shutter offset now has a range from -1 to 1.
  • Changed the order of operations in the installer, so that components which need additional downloads (the material library, or the NVIDIA AI denoiser) are installed last – this means if the installation is canceled during the additional downloads, everything else should already be properly installed.

General Improvements

Unsupported materials are now gray for GI rays, which removes the red bleeding of the material into the scene:

unsupported material

unsupported material

  • Improved texture sharpness on grazing angles (for diffuse, bump, displacement, etc.) – in the image below, notice how definition and detail are preserved:

grazing angles

grazing angles

In the viewport, scatter is now able to toggle the instance color between the original object wire color and the scatter object color.
In Corona Scatter, the rotation and scale of the original instanced objects no longer affect the scattered instances (this does not change existing scenes unless the Legacy checkbox is disabled).

Installation and Licensing

  • Corona Renderer now requires SSE4.1 CPU for all tools – including licensing server. We had hoped to continue supporting the licensing server on legacy CPUs, which we mentioned in the Corona 2 release blog – unfortunately, this has proven to be time and cost prohibitive and we had to change our plans. Only CPUs more than a decade old will be affected.
  • Licensing and DR servers are now 64-bit applications.
  • The CIE, Corona Standalone, and DR and licensing servers are now installed to sub-directories by default, to avoid problems with multiple versions of the same DLL being installed at the same time.
  • Added better reporting of Corona Renderer version to MAXScript (see getVersionNumber etc. on https://corona-renderer.com/wiki/maxscript#corona_rendering_core).

Bug Fixes

IR Bug Fixes (and improvements)

  • Fixed IR not restarting when render elements were modified.
  • Fixed non-filtered render elements not being correctly rendered in IR.
  • Fixed unnecessary reparsing of the the environment map in IR.
  • IR no longer unnecessarily restarts when a map not attached to the scene is modified.
  • Fixed some unnecessary IR restarts when navigation the material editor.
  • IR is no longer restarted when switching between Bitmap nodes in the Slate material editor.
  • Fixed IR restarts when Scatter visualization settings (dot, box, full, etc.) are changed.

DR Bug Fixes (and improvements)

  • DR is now able to automatically discover slaves connected through all network interfaces.
  • IFL image sequences are now correctly handled by Corona DR.
  • Integrity of scenes sent via Corona DR is checked, and reported in the case of integrity failure.
  • Fixed Tilt&Shift in XRefed camera when rendering with DR.
  • Added an option to restart slave 3ds Max after each render (we implemented this as a workaround for some potential problems that a small number of users may encounter with DR server freezes).
  • Fixed DR slaves not fetching missing assets from master in some cases (for example bitmaps referenced by atmospheric effects).
  • Path to 3ds Max is now correctly auto-detected even when the 3ds Max is reinstalled to a different path, unless the path was explicitly overridden in the configuration file.
  • Fixed some cases where rendering non-camera view leads to an incorrect result.
  • Fixed DR slaves sometimes introducing “dots” of darker color in the CMasking_ID render element.
  • Added a button in the DR Server for opening the folder with EXR images which were sent to master.
  • Added a button in the DR Master to the DR render settings for opening the folder with EXR images which were sent from slaves.
  • Better error reporting when the slave 3ds Max fails to start.

Scatter Bug Fixes (and improvements)

  • The density spinner below distribute-on object list has been renamed to Factor spinner since it better describes its purpose (see its improved tooltip for further details). Also both Factor and Frequency spinners are now disabled when they are not considered in current scattering mode.
  • Fixed Scatter to respect Material IDs set on polygons of distribute-on objects while evaluating MultiMap plugged into density or scale map slots. Behavior in old scenes is not changed unless the Legacy checkbox in the Scattering rollout gets unchecked.
  • Fixed occasional crash in Scatter when displaying instances as wire boxes or point clouds in the viewport.
  • Fixed crashes occurring while scattering large amounts of instances.
  • Tooltips for Factor and Frequency spinners in Scatter are now displayed also for their labels; the tooltips now also state under which circumstances the spinners are enabled.
  • Fixed problem where scatter density map updates were not reflected in scatter viewport display in 3ds Max 2017.
  • The “Original wire colors” checkbox in Scatter is now disabled for Previz types for which it is not supported.
  • For surface scattering mode, fixed the Count control so that it is disabled when the scatter is switched to UV map scattering.
  • Fixed the Dots viewport display mode to display dots at the correct places for animations (this bug did not affect rendering, only the viewport display).
  • Fixed the distribute-on object density and instanced object frequency spinners so that they get updated when changing the object selection (in the lists above them) via keyboard input.
  • Reworked the MAXScript interface for the Scatter. The old interface is no longer available.  See https://corona-renderer.com/wiki/maxscript#corona_scatter_api

General Bug Fixes (and improvements)

  • Fixed “Region” button update in VFB when regions were enabled/disabled via MAXScript.
  • System-wide settings (accessible through the System Settings dialog) are now accessible from MAXScript.
  • Fixed unlinking target in targeted camera.
  • Fixed CoronaCamera occasionally having an incorrect mesh after loading a scene.
  • Daylight system no longer creates a target for the CoronaSun.
  • Fixed crash when trying to run Corona Renderer on unsupported CPU – now an error message is shown instead.
  • LightMix now properly works with lights having “Occlude other lights” disabled.
  • Fixed undo/redo not working with various object lists in Corona Renderer UI – scatter instance/distribution objects or density and frequency values, material override exclude list, etc.
  • Fixed diffuse texture being visible in reflection render element when non-physical lights are used.
  • Minimized problem of installer progress log window blinking when downloading additional pack files.
  • Fixed Corona Light gizmo scaling in viewport when scene units changed.
  • Fixed crash when CoronaSun is used as an input node for Corona Distance Map.
  • Fixed CoronaSun object cannot be selected when using the Daylight system without a Sky light.
  • Fixed auto-scaling of the Kelvin temperature result in volumetric rendering (CVolumeGrid).
  • Fixed occasional crash in denoising.
  • Fixed loading denoised image from the Render History (previously, this may have resulted in NaNs when using Regions, Render Selected, etc.).
  • Fixed incorrect unmapping of Filmic tonemapping.
  • Fixed incorrect results of CoronaBitmap used as screen mapped environment.
  • Fixed incorrect shading result of CoronaRoundEdges map (in fast mode) on displaced geometry.
  • Fixed crash occurring when attempting to show removed render element in Corona VFB.
  • Corona Standalone is no longer showing modal error dialogs in silent mode.
  • Fixed undo/redo for Clear list option in right-click menu on “+” button in various object lists.
  • Fixed Clear list option in right-click menu on “+” button in Scatter not to cause crashes.
  • Fixed CoronaColorCorrect “Invert colors” being ignored when the map is assigned to a bump map slot.
  • CoronaColorCorrect now preserves alpha of the input map.
  • Fixed rare crashes with non-manifold geometry (e.g. geometry where two or more triangles only share a single vertex, where an edge is shared by more than 2 triangles, self-intersecting meshes, etc.).
  • Added an error message when rendering a mesh with changing topology and velocity render element is enabled.
  • Updated the readme.txt for the “Unpack” option of the Corona Renderer for 3ds Max installer.

Other Notes

Oldest supported Phoenix FD version is now 3.11.04.


Corona Renderer 2

Released on June 25, 2018
Works with 3ds Max 2013-2019

Selected Key New Features

  • Heterogenous media support added
  • Initial V–Ray compatibility added
  • 150 materials added to the Material Library
  • Corona Official Toolbar added

Corona Renderer 1.7 (hotfix 4)

Released on October 24, 2017
Works with 3ds Max 2012-2019

Selected Key New Features

  • Material Library with over 300 materials added
  • Hair, Fur and Skin rendering added
  • Dedicated Corona Camera
  • Faster rendering with the inclusion of DMC sampler

1.6 (hotfix 3)

Released on April 24, 2017
Works with 3ds Max 2012-2018

Selected Key New Features

  • Corona Image Editor added
  • Triplanar mapping added
  • Corona Scatter can now scatter in regular patterns and along splines
  • Improved Distributed Rendering

1.5 (hotfix 2)

Released on October 10, 2016
Works with 3ds Max 2012-2017

Selected Key New Features

  • Interactive LightMix added
  • PBR workflow
  • New VFB post-processing, e.g. Bloom & Glare, LUTs, and Filmic Tone Mapping
  • Corona Distance map added

1.4 (hotfix 1)

Released on May 16, 2016
Works with 3ds Max 2011-2017

Selected Key New Features

  • Denoising added
  • Adaptivity added
  • VFB History and Multiple Render Regions added
  • Texture baking added
  • VR camera added

1.3

Released on November 3rd 2015
Works with 3ds Max 2011-2016

Selected Key New Features

  • Corona Proxies now support animation
  • Corona Layered Material added
  • Advanced ‘Render Selected’ options

1.2 (hotfix 1)

Released on July 29, 2015
Works with 3ds Max 2011-2016

Selected Key New Features

  • Corona Displacement modifier added, and Displacementimproved in general
  • Support for 3ds Max Atmospheric effects added
  • Improved Corona Multimap

1.1 (hotfix 1)

Released on June 16, 2015
Works with 3ds Max 2011-2016

Selected Key New Features

  • Corona Bitmap added, giving speedups
  • Improved support for Particle Flow
  • Improved error reporting

1.0 (hotfix 3)

Released on February 25, 2015
Works with 3ds Max 2011-2016

Selected Key New Features

  • First commercial release
  • Interactive Rendering
  • Corona Scatter
  • SSS and volumetric scattering capability

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