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  • Rendering
  • 3ds Max
Skill Level
  • Advanced

First thing I have made is a plank that will be the floor of my studio. I chamfered a simple box. After that, I have copied the plank to make full floor. Make sure that you do not instance, because it is important to have each plank as an individual object.


Next move is making of the material the wood. I used very simple setup for the material, which will give me good result without taking too much time for making it. Simple material is also helping the render times, so using it compensates for realism lack in it. Notice that even though reflective glossiness has a map on it, I needed to lower the map intensity to 80. This could be at 100 if I have used the color correction, but I want to keep this simple, so the decision is to simply lower to 80.

Now when the material is done, I am going to make a Multi/Sub-Object material that is going to have same material in all of the slots, with maps changed, so that I have some diversity. In this example, I have made 10 different maps.


Now I applied that material to complete selection of planks, did the “bitmap fit”, rotated it to follow the flow of planks, but obviously, the material is not giving the result that I want, so I had to call in help a little plugin called “Random UVW GizmoTM” from Scriptspot.com - http://www.scriptspot.com/3ds-max/scripts/random-uvw-gizmotm made by amazingly talented Serbian guy Branko Živkovi?. After downloading the script, all I had to do is to drag and drop it into the 3ds max and small window opens. I selected the button at the bottom right corner – “position” because I only need to move the position of the UVW map. Very important move before I hit the randomize UVW Gizmo button is to select all the planks, and click “Make unique” button to separate each UVW Map.

We can now just hit the randomize UVW gizmo button.

This came out perfect! Now I have wooden tiles that are not repeating themselves, but still only one material is being used, and only one pattern can be seen. Again, I have to call the scriptspot to our help. This time I am going to use HoHa Material ID by superhoha - http://www.scriptspot.com/3ds-max/scripts/hoha-material-id . Again it’s just a drag-and-drop action. In this case, I put number of IDs to 10 and clicked “Set material ID by Random!” and was again amazed by ease and beauty of the result! Now I have 10 different materials applied to planks, nothing is repeating, it looks much more realistic this way.

Next move is to make the room. I made it very simple. It has one big window that is following the shape of the room and one that is smaller only to add another source of light as well as some shape to reflections. Window is modeled, grouped and I have added glass to it so that it reflects inside of the room a little bit. Reflections on the window glass are not so prominent, but every small touch adds to that realism that you want to have at the end.


Now I introduced the camera into the scene. I place my camera around 1200mm above ground level for interior scenes. Unless you are a camera expert or a super-talented photographer, you probably want to use horizontal camera ALWAYS. It means that you should not angle your camera. I did the same thing here. I have used VryPhysicalCamera. I put my desired resolution pressed Shift+F to show safe frames and adjusted the camera.

Because I do not want to use any lights with strong colors, I put white balance to “neutral” (white 255,255,255). Shutter speed I changed to 50, which is my starting point for interior daylight renders.


Next thing is my light balance test setup. Here is the link to download my V-Ray light-balancing setup, but basically it is just this: • Enable built-in Frame Buffer • Color mapping exponential with gamma 2,2 • Mode: color mapping and gamma • Enabled GI • Irradiance map “low” preset • Secondary engine “light cache” • Subdivs 500

Link to light balancing setup
Introducing the lights

In this step, I am introducing the lights. First, I put a light behind the window, which will be my main source of lighting here. Intensity is 30 and check the “invisible”.

Second light, which will be my side light, will be 2/3 of intensity of the main light.

Two important lights are done, now I have to put one that will light my model, which I will call the direct light.


Next, I rendered the scene to see how good the result is. Do not forget to turn off the option “Use colors in sRGB space”, and you will see your render just as it is going to be after you save it. As you can see, I have reflection from my direct light, which you may or may not want to remove, but just for this tutorial, I will turn it off.

I selected the direct light, clicked on exclude and selected the glass. That way, only the glass window will not have a reflection from this light.

Perfect! I got what I like!


I now introduced the model into my studio and I put a backdrop. Backdrop is a VrayLightMtl with intensity of 10 and color correction on the map. I did the color correction because I wanted it to be a bit more saturated and brighter. I did not want that much contrast on this map. Now it looks as it’s snowing outside. That makes the person viewing it comfortable inside where everything is nice and warm. ?


Now comes the most important and the most interesting part. I would call this part “the optimization”, because in this part I want to optimize the scene so that it renders faster and nicer too. My materials are already closer to what they should be, so I am going to return values for the reflection subdivisions to 8. In render setup, go to render elements tab and select these render elements: • VRayGlobalIllumination • VRayLighting • VRayReflection • VraySampleRate • VraySpecular I am going to include the file for render setup so that you can just load the settings and start working on my scene. You can download it here.

Render presets

After rendering with these settings, I get these results:

In these render passes I want to tackle the grain that appears in them. I am going to tweak some values to get that smooth render even before I increase settings for the final render. This process involves something very similar to interpolation. If you increase some values, you are helping the image sampler to do less work thus giving a faster render, but if you increase too much, you are going to have render time increased without much gain. It means that this is hard to explain over a systematic tutorial, I would have to make a video about it. If you support my tutorial, with comments, likes and shares, I will make a video about that too. Experiment with these and get to result that I got at the end.

• Specular and Lighting grain is solved by increasing the number of subdivisions for sampling on each light in the scene

• Reflection grain is solved through increasing the reflection subdivisions in the material editor

• GI grain is solved through settings in the render setup

• Final, sample rate is showing where the image sampler has to work most. It is the combination of each individual render pass. Less red color in the render –the better, less difference in color – the better. There are techniques to improve this too, but for now, I will not focus on this, until I make the video about this part. This is the result. It is not that easy to see the exact difference between two renders, but once you train your eye to be more sensitive to grain, you will see the difference. Once you zoom in, you will be able to see it.

This is the render without any postproduction

I hope you liked my tutorial, and that it helps you become more professional in your work.

You can download my complete scene hereMy websiteMy facebook pageMy LinkedIn
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  • 3ds Max
  • Rendering
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| 3 years ago
Hi! Is there any way to make a begginer version of this tutorial? It is so well made, but I am having a hard time going through every step since I am only beggining with 3DS Max. This is exactly the stuff I need to learn and do. Your result is #1!!
| 1 year ago
Hi MsAnne, Thanks for your feedback, we'll put it on our request list. Best, The 3ds Max Team
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