Shaderlight Cloud Rendering
Shaderlight Cloud Rendering is the first and only SketchUp rendering plug-in to harness the power of Cloud computing.
More and more Shaderlight customers are turning to the cloud when rendering high resolution images and animations. Not only does it free up their desktop by rendering on high-powered 64-core machines from Limitless Computing but delivers a fast and cost effective alternative to rendering locally.
If you’ve not used Shaderlight Cloud rendering before, here’s a step by step guide to your first render or animation.
To access the Cloud plugin click the ‘Cloud’ icon on the Shaderlight toolbar. You then need to create an account to register for Cloud rendering.
You can change your registered details under ‘My Profile’. The email address you provide will be used to notify you that a render has finished, so please make sure this is filled in correctly.
Under your Profile you can also add users to your account so you can share your Cloud credits with others who would like to use Cloud Rendering.
The ‘Billing’ section allows you to add more Cloud Credits and to store your card details for future Credit purchases.
Cloud Credit Prices.
Pricing for cloud rendering is based on a credit system. When you sign up you will receive one free credit to get you started.
So what will 1 Cloud Credit get you?
- 1 Credit = 1 Scene up to 1920×1080
- 1 Credit = 15 frames of animation at 480p
Take a look at the online calculator to work out how many credits you need for your project.
You can also log into the Limitless Computing website to view the progress of your Renders and download them to your machine. This can also be done in the ‘My Scenes’ tab, which is mentioned below.
Uploading a New Scene.
To send a scene to the Cloud you need to click on the ‘New Scene’ tab. Here you have the options to verify or change the Shaderlight settings for the scene. Shaderlight Cloud will use the scene you have open and set up in SketchUp, so make sure you are on the correct scene in your model.
You can then select any alternate settings for the scene. It is advisable to check the ‘Use Max Quality’ button as you want to have the highest quality render possible. Then you can also select the render size either from the preset list or specify your own size.
Once you are happy with the settings it will show you how many credits you need for the render. You can then click the ‘Start Render’ button to upload your scene to the Cloud.
Under the ‘My Scenes’ tab you can see the progress of any live renders under the ‘Active’ heading. Once a render completes you will receive an email to let you know and you can then log into the Cloud and find your render under the ‘Scenes’ heading.
Any completed Animations will be under the Animations heading. You can then download your images and animations to your computer. Here are a couple scenes rendered using Shaderlight Cloud:
This Render cost 1 Cloud Credit. It was rendered at size 1980 x 720 in High Quality and took 1 hour, 9 minutes and 5 seconds to render using Shaderlight Cloud.
This Render also cost 1 Cloud Credit. It was rendered at 1980 x 720 in High Quality and took 2 Hours, 42 minutes and 30 seconds.
Cloud Rendering on the go.
Users of desktop Cloud Rendering now have the power to view their renders anywhere using an Android or Apple mobile device thanks to the Cloud Viewer app developed by Limitless Computing.
- View SketchUp Renders (scenes and animations) associated with your Shaderlight Cloud account.
- Save files directly to your device.
- Check the status of on-going renders on the Cloud.
- Control users and set user permissions
- Manage payment information
- Download your Shaderlight Cloud renders 24/7.
When rendering an animation locally, you must set the location and filename of the frames to be rendered and the frame rate (which is the number of frames rendered for every second of your animation).
The Browse button allows you to select a location and a filename for your rendered frames. It is best to set up new a folder for the rendered frames.
The filename will become the prefix of the frames name. Each frame will then have a frame number after the prefix. For example if the filename is: Animation, the rendered frames will be Animation_000, Animation_0001…and so on.
The frame rate sets how many frames are rendered for every second of your SketchUp animation. The more frames you render per second, the smoother the animation will appear when it is played back. But the more frames, the longer the animation will take to render.
You will see Shaderlight displays the total number of frames to be rendered for the whole SketchUp animation, based on the chosen settings. You have the option to render part of the animation or the complete animation using the Scenes/Frame Range controls.
When happy with the settings, you can click on the ‘Render’ button to start rendering your animation. You can also upload your animation to the Cloud….
Uploading an Animation.
The same process applies when you want to upload an animation to the Cloud. Firstly you need to verify the Shaderlight settings. You can change the frame rate which will determine the speed of the animation. As you change the Frame rate, you will see it gives you a break down of how long the Animation will be and how many frames it will render.
Then as with a scene you can check the Max Quality box and specify the animation render size. When you are happy with the settings you can upload the model by clicking ‘Start Animation’.
When your animation has finished rendering on the Cloud, you will receive an email and you will be able to download the frames or the finished animation in a compressed video format.
Here is an example of an animation rendered using Shaderlight Cloud:
If you need any help getting started with Shaderlight Cloud rendering, then please contact firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.