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C4D Spotlight: Cinema 4D R20 ProRender

C4D Spotlight: Cinema 4D R20 ProRender

In the last month, we did a series on third-party renderers for Cinema 4D, but the fact is, the AMD Radeon ProRender update for Cinema 4D R20 is fantastic for Physically based rendering. It has new features such as multi-pass rendering, Subsurface Scattering (SSS), and motion blur.

Some 3D Renderer Terminology about ProRender

You could get away with using ProRender and not knowing what any of this means, but a little knowledge never hurt anyone. ProRender is included with Cinema 4D Studio, Visualize, and Broadcast. It is not included with Prime, BodyPaint, or Cinema 4D Lite. See the Cinema 4D R20 Comparison Chart for more information on what is in each package.

ProRender a physically based GPU render engine, for fast and physically accurate renders (using OpenCL and Metal on Mac). It's a biased renderer and uses ray tracing. Over the summer I wrote an article, In Depth: 3D Renderers, that explained some of the terms, so I'll pull from that article explaining some of these terms.

  • GPU Rendering: A graphics processing unit, or GPU, is there to render 3D graphics and to help the CPU perform its calculations. Software that utilizes the GPU in rendering is faster than CPU renderers but are limited to the amount of VRAM or video memory. Learn more about CPU vs. GPU rendering.
  • Biased Rendering: Biased means that the renderer will estimate values, or do a bit of educated guessing using mathematical functions, and not calculate every single pixel. The benefit is that it's much faster. The downside is that the results may not be absolutely accurate. Learn more about biased vs. unbiased rendering.
  • Ray tracing: Raytracing is a type of Global Illumination. Global Illumination is the algorithm that a software uses to recreate natural lighting from the real world. There are several types of algorithms including radiosity, ray tracing, beam tracing, cone tracing, path tracing, Metropolis light transport, ambient occlusion, photon mapping, and image-based lighting. These can be used on their own or in combination with each other to create better results. Learn more about Global Illumination.
  • Physically Based Rendering: Often abbreviated PBR, Physically Based Rendering uses mathematical theories that allow for photorealistic renderings. Learn more about PBR.
  • OpenCL: Open Computing Language is a programming language for GPUs and more. Read AMD Radeon ProRender with MAXON Cinema 4D R20
  • Metal: Metal 2 was developed by Apple for speeding up the GPU and CPU up to 10x faster and making it work more efficiently. Apple has ended support for OpenCL and OpenGL recently, in favor of Metal. More about Metal.

Cinema 4D R20: ProRender

There are three videos below that explain what's new in ProRender in R20 and they are redundant in a lot of aspects but they all explain things a bit differently.

ProRender Enhancements – SSS, Multipass and Motion Blur [New in C4D R20]

Rick Barrett of Maxon explains ProRender in R20. 

What's New in Cinema 4D R20: ProRender

Michael Balchaitis Lead instructor at AstronomicSkills.com explains the updates in R20. 

Cinema 4D R20 Favourite Features – AMD Radeon ProRender Update

C4DUK talks about the new features, like motion blur, multipass, and subsurface scattering, with ProRender in R20. It also works with the Physical Sky for better lighting.

Tutorials for ProRender

Cinema 4D R20 Tutorial ProRender In Depth

MAXON Lead Instructor Helge Maus goes into the finer details about ProRender in R20.

Easy Selections With ProRender's Multipasses – Cinema 4D R20

Multipass is a new feature in ProRender in R20. Dimitris Katsafouros explains how to utilize this feature. 

Cinema 4D Tutorial – Intro to Cinema 4D R19 ProRender

This tutorial from EJ from Eyedesyn is for the previous version of Cinema 4D but still has a lot of great information. 

Third-Party Renderers for Cinema 4D

I had mentioned earlier that I did a series on third-party renderers for Cinema 4D. It's mainly comprised of tutorials. Below are links to the articles. 

Previous C4D Spotlight Articles


Cinema 4D R20 Now Available

You heard right! Purchase Cinema 4D R20 is Now Available!

Some new features in R20:

  • MoGraph Fields – Offer unprecedented content creation possibilities to the procedural animation toolset in MoGraph. The Fields feature in Cinema 4D R20 makes it possible to efficiently control the strength of the effect using any combination of falloffs – from simple geometric shapes to shaders and sounds to objects and mathematical formulas. Fields can be mixed and combined with one another in a layer list. Effects can be re-mapped and grouped in multiple Fields to control Effectors, Deformers, weights and more.
  • Volume-based modeling – The OpenVDB-based Volume Builder and Mesher in Cinema 4D R20 offer an entirely new procedural modeling workflow. Any primitive or polygon object (including the new Fields objects) can be combined to create complex objects using Boolean operations. Volumes created in R20 can be exported sequentially in OpenVDB format and can be used in any application or render engine that supports OpenVDB.
  • Node-based material system – More than 150 different node-based shaders offer customers a new and streamlined workflow to quickly and conveniently create shading effects from simple reference materials to highly complex shaders. The existing standard material system’s interface can be used to get started with the new node-based workflow. Node-based materials can be made available as parametric assets with a reduced interface.
  • CAD Import – Cinema 4D R20 offers seamless drag and drop import for common CAD file formats such as Solidworks, STEP, Catia, JT, and IGES. The scale-based tessellation feature of the import function offers individual control of the level of detail for impressive visualizations.
  • ProRender improvements – The GPU-based ProRender in Cinema 4D lets customers utilize the power of the GPU to create physically accurate renders. In R20, key features such as Subsurface Scattering, motion blur, and multi-passes are now available. Other enhancements in ProRender include updated code, support for Apple’s Metal2 graphics technology and the use of out-of-core textures.
  • Core Modernization – The modernization efforts of the Cinema 4D core architecture and foundational technologies MAXON announced in 2017 are now more tangible and mature in Release 20. This is marked by a series of significant API adaptations, the new node system, and the modeling and UI framework.

Learn More

Posted by Michele Yamazaki