Emulating an Offline Renderer by 3D Graphics Hardware

Jörn Loviscach
Hochschule Bremen, University of Applied Sciences
Fachbereich Elektrotechnik und Informatik
28199 Bremen

e-mail: jlovisca@informatik.hs-bremen.de



3D design software has since long employed graphics chips for low-quality real-time previewing. But their dramatically increased computing power now paves the way to accelerate the final high-quality rendering, too. While as yet only one major 3D software package offers a dedicated "hardware renderer" for final output, a small number of design applications can leverage the graphics card to support game creation: They display vertex and pixel shader effects in the same way as they appear on the game's screen. We present an approach unifying the use of graphics cards for game design and for final rendering. It is implemented as a plug-in for Maxon Cinema 4D, a standard commercial software package for modeling, animation, and rendering. We examine which factors determine the performance of this solution and discuss corresponding improvements.