Nvidia Brings Interactive Physically-Based Rendering to the Masses
March 19, 2015

Nvidia Brings Interactive Physically-Based Rendering to the Masses

On March 19, 2015, at GTC 2015, Nvidia announced its plan to bring interactive, scalable, physically-based rendering to millions of designers. 

Physically-based rendering is crucial for industrial designers, architects, and more. It lets users predict and measure light as it interacts with different surfaces and materials at any time of day or any location. Being able to test physical simulations quickly allows designers to identify and alleviate potential problems before a structure, automobile, or other physical product is actually built.

Nvidia’s product road map includes updates to Iray, its GPU-accelerated, photorealistic rendering software, and new professional GPUs, including the Quadro M6000 and Quadro K1200. Iray 2015 will make interactive, scalable physically-based rendering much more accessible by including support for the most popular 3D creation applications, such as Autodesk 3ds Max, Maya, and Revit; McNeel Rhino; and Maxon’s Cinema 4D. Additionally, Iray’s new Material Definition Language (MDL) will allow materials to be interchangeable across applications so that designers can switch from one tool to another and get consistent results. 

Iray plus 3ds Max 

When paired with Nvidia’s new Quadro M6000 GPU, with 12GB of memory and built on Nvidia’s latest Maxwell GPU architecture, Iray 2015 dramatically reduces the barrier to entry for interactive physically-based rendering and offers more than twice the performance of Iray 2014 on Nvidia’s previous-generation Kepler-based Quadro GPUs. Users can also scale Iray 2015 by using the Nvidia Quadro Visual Computing Appliance (VCA), equipped with eight of the new Quadro M6000 GPUs. Iray 2015 can distribute the power from the Quadro VCA to users within a network as needed, and is specifically designed to accelerate Iray.

Truly interactive performance in the digital realm can help prevent disastrous outcomes in real-world design. Some of the most well-known examples of designs gone wrong are architectural – for instance, the “Walkie Talkie” building in London, Vdara Hotel in Las Vegas, and Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, all of which unexpectedly created severe hot spots in their surrounding neighborhoods resulting from their unique curves and reflective surfaces. If the architects of these buildings were able to accurately predict the lighting impact during design, they might have been able to visualize these hazards in advance.

The ability to render interactively with physical accuracy is a huge productivity boon for architects as they test a range of windows or interior lighting options, manufacturers as they experiment with surface materials and colors, and visual effects artists as they create a fully lit scene during previsualization. To learn more about Iray 2015 and physically-based, predictive rendering, visit www.nvidia.com/iray.

Iray for Maya (Peter Lindermann)