Sunday, June 9, 2013

A work-around: Revit Renders smooth curves with facets, and other revelations.

I've been consulting recently and in doing so I came across two things that I find bothersome with Revit, one which I have a work-around for and the other just sucks.
First let's talk about the one I have a work-around for, and that is the lack of smoothing of curves in renderings. Here is my example:

In the render, you can clearly see that what should be a smooth circle, is rendered as faceted.

Here you can see it in Realistic view in Revit to the left and being edited to the right and the circle appears as it should.
This isn't a new issue. It's been around for quite a while, per this AUGI post from 2008. So the work-around I came up with was to use the split tool:
and split the circle in their sketches in the family editor so there are more divisions to the curve. This forces Revit to render more accurately, although still faceted.

Here I have split the linework in the sketches for the circles and re-rendered with a better but not perfect result. The reflections on the default Brushed Stainless material suck. I mean, not even close.
The second bothersome issue has to do with a certain material used often in Interior projects. This is Brushed Stainless Steel. There is no work-around for this other than Photoshopping it. Autodesk provides a wide array of materials for use in typical construction and they have been working over the years to make them better and then they moved to conform them across platforms and I'm sure have spent a great deal of effort trying to provide a useable library for rendering and that's all well and good except when it comes to this material type... The issue with Brushed Stainless Steel has to do with the inability of Revit to handle Anisotropic reflection rotation -that is the brushed groove alignment's effect on light reflections based on a viewer's relative position. You see, according to my research Anisotropic reflections on typical materials are horizontal, which is how Revit renders every material. Brushed stainless on the other hand reflects anisotropic light vertically. Here's how it's done in Maya with great realism. So the message is, if you need to render your project's Kitchen with it's Stainless steel appliances, use Maya, or fudge it in Photoshop.
Here's my draft with Photoshop:
So, lesson is, Revit is not so much a product design application and I should use Maya or Max or Inventor :P

No comments: