5 Replies Latest reply on Apr 21, 2009 3:58 PM by Tony Szuta

    Best exporter for rendering

    Camiel Heurkens
      im new to these forums so im sorry if there already is a topic about this or if its in the wrom place(please redirect me=))

      i dont think the results from photoworks are realistic enough so i started looking for another renderer, i found indigo(anyone know something better?). it turned out that it doesnt accept standard SW-files(.sldasm/.sldprt). i had to save as .step/.iges, my version of solidworks (08/09 Student Design Kit) apparently doesnt want to "save as"(anything else than standard SW files).

      also i tried the add-in hypershot, but that one doesnt do anything either(same as formatworks).

      anyone know a solution? or is it just that i have the SDK?

      any help welcome=)
        • Best exporter for rendering
          Troy Peterson
          I use "Polytrans" to convert solidwork files to different formats.
          • Best exporter for rendering
            Neil Larsen
            export to Indigo is only available via plugin from Blender, Max, Sketchup etc.
            no CAD format is supported natively.

            I use Indigo via Blender with the Blendigo python script and .vrml 1.0 files ex SW.
            The Blendigo exporter I use is one I modified for SW purposes.
            This type of solution while making good results lacks integration and is some what 'experimental - ie it requires some effort to learn and use and you need to do your own uv unwrap and materials.

            Another unbiased renderer for Blender is Lux and this one is GPL rather than just free.
            Same story with file format and 'experimental nature though.. has slightly more more functionality that Indigo and a new version 0.6 is due in a few weeks I think

            You might be stuck for using other renderers from the SW student version
            perhaps the Maxwell demo and plugin will work with it? not sure

            Edit: I included links above for curious people
              • Best exporter for rendering
                Camiel Heurkens
                i still have to find out how to implement python scripts.

                but to export SW-files as .vrml you have to go file>save as... ?because i only get the options to save as .sldprt/sldasm.

                Lux sounds interesting too, but what do you mean by "gpl rather than just free"?
                and you think it could indeed be the SDK thats a limiting the possibilities?

                tnx anyway
                  • Best exporter for rendering
                    Neil Larsen
                    Most likely because it is a student version you dont have any/many options for saving - ie it is limited version, but yes 'save as'..

                    I can't find any reference to any limitations in a quick search but I gather the .sldprt files are the real deal and not student edition specific? although they might well be
                    If so you wont be able to export to any other renderer sorry

                    If they are the real deal possibly you could get a user with full SW to import your file and export as vrml for you..

                    Indigo is closed source but free for personal use including networked rendering.
                    You really need a quad for this type of renderer or you will be frustrated by waiting so long
                    Lux is open source under GPL license and also free.

                    Blender python scripts are fairly easy to use you just have to follow some simple instructions to set everything up in the right place.
                    Be warned though as I said there is a fair learning curve if you want to use these.
                    It does take a while to become familiar with Blender but it is pretty useful but mostly for artists and it is open source and free too.
                    Currently it is in the middle of a large makeover for version 2.50.
                    The UI will be vastly improved and even look sexy which ought to make it many more friends.
                    It will be one of the best cg things that Autodeck don't and can't own
                • Best exporter for rendering
                  Tony Szuta
                  I know this post is a bit old, but you could look at Maxwell Render. Maxwell offers a SolidWorks plug-in. You can do everything from within SolidWorks. There is a learning curve to the software, but the results are well worth the effort.