The PhotoView 360 rendering tool in SolidWorks can produce some astounding photo realistic renders. However large, high quality renders don’t happen instantaneously. In fact a large render of a highly complex model could take hours to complete, even on a very powerful system. PhotoView 360 users have always been able to set up SolidWorks to schedule renders to run un-attended at times that they are not at their workstations, but now with SolidWorks 2013 they can take advantage of the processing power of other computers on their office network during this downtime as well, sharing the processing load across multiple systems.
Back in October 2009, Greg Hynd started the most popular thread on SolidWorks Forum called Pictures of SolidWorks Products. At this moment, this thread has almost 100 pages, 1500 posts and a million views!!!
The products depicted here cover a huge range of industries. You will see lots of cars, plane, boats, houses, whole plants, stairs, jewellery, abstract art, musical instruments, tooling, bikes, flowers, machine tools and even Star Wars speeders or Light Sabers!
Due to the limited space I have available for this article, I have selected a few pictures created by Aaron Baumgartner, Adrian Crisci, Adrian Velazques, Andrew Lowe, Dean Anderson, Rob Rodriquez, Curth Roth, Dave Klimas, David Cook, David Demaria, David Sekanina, Erik Anderson, Gary Garrison, Greg Hynd, Jacek Stachowiak, Jim Lightcamp, John Stoltzfus, Kevin Pymm, Klaus Hansen, Mans Collner, Mark Bishop, Matthew Perez, Michael Fernando, Michael McIlroy, Rick May, Rob Geshlider, Rusty Smith, Ryan Petersen, Scott Baugh, Scott Bruins, Shown Owl, Steven Vandermeulen, Tom Blough, Tyler Bergauer and Wytze Van Mansum.
I can’t wait to see your pictures posted on this thread! Go and brag to the world about your amazing designs!
SolidWorks Photoview 360 does a really great job of creating amazingly realistic renderings. We’ve discussed before how to add your own background image in SolidWorks to use in a render, but what if you only want your model rendered and to have the background be transparent?
The approach to get a transparent background in a PhotoView 360 render will vary depending on what release of SolidWorks you are using. Here is the process for SolidWorks 2012 and SolidWorks 2013.
A great new feature in SolidWorks 2013 is the ability to use Luxology native appearances for PhotoView 360 renders. This opens up to SolidWorks users the ability to make use of the huge selection of additional appearances in Luxology’s online library.
But even better, for customers with an active SolidWorks Subscription contract, the subscription now includes free access to that library. Here is how you can get access to that library and make use of the appearance files available there.
For this blog post I am going to show you how to take existing CAD data and render it using 3DVIA Composer. For this example I am going to use a model that already has texture on it.
The first thing I am going to do is adjust the lighting. I prefer to create custom lighting so that I have more control of the final render. To do this you go to the Render tab and choose lighting mode, and turn on Per-Pixel and Shadows. Read More »
I’ve been a fan of the game of Labyrinth for a while. I spent hours as a kid mastering the X-Y controls to move the steel sphere from Start to Finish to Start to Finish, back and forth continuously. It was almost an obsession.
I started helping at a youth group and found that they have no games. What could be better than a giant Labyrinth game! And why not use SolidWorks to design this latest innovation in gigantic fun! If only I had a workshop. Building this in a one bedroom apartment has its disadvantages. Click “More” for details of the project and the virtual solution with SolidWorks Motion.
When you have layers of transparent materials in your model (like a glass containing water), you get a better result when rendering with PhotoView 360 if the “liquid” body interferes by a small amount with the “glass” body.
Take a look at two renderings showing both results. Fig. 1 shows the real-life condition, where we have just “contact” between glass and water, while fig. 2 depicts the case where there is a small “interference” between the two. Which one do you like more?
As a side note, you should never leave a gap between the two transparent bodies.
A very short tip that can save you a lot of time:
If you use the Preview Window in PhotoView 360 and you find out it takes too long to finish rendering, you can “brush” with your mouse over areas of interest and they will get priority over the rest.
Apparently this new functionality was added in SolidWorks 2011 SP 4.0.
Getting your Expert Certification in SolidWorks (CSWE) can be compared to winning a Gold Medal in a top competition!
I suspect that is not because they do not have the resources for coining the medals, but because they know how hard it is to please you, their user. Give a SolidWorks Professional a medal and, instead of smiling for the camera, he or she will analyze its imprint, check its reflectivity and, after a while, will say ‘Thanks… but I can design a better one’.
Knowing that, SolidWorks gave you something better: the tools to “coin” your own medal. Remember the PhotoView 360 video posted by our guest blogger Rob Rodriguez? All these tools are described there in great detail.
As you know, my colleague Andrew Lidstone is Javelin’s newest CSWE. Why don’t you practice coining a gold medal to celebrate his achievement? This way, when you get your own CSWE, you will know how to do yours. Something like this:
One of the most underutilized feature sets of PhotoView 360 is the appearance surface finish tab. Why is it underutilized? For a couple of reasons I think, those being:
- It’s found in the appearance advanced settings that some users may never activate.
- Most users don’t fully understand the settings and controls found there or how they can be used.
I could explain surface finish with text and pictures here in the post but I thought the best way to show the controls was to create a short video so you could see them in action.