Help me understand Ambient Occlusion

Started by Xidor, March 06, 2013, 12:59:20 PM

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I'm hoping to get some education as I continue to learn more about rendering.

A coworker has commented that while Keyshot is very good, speed being one of them, it still has some limitations that prevent it from being as good as the more fancy rendering packages like 3Ds Max or Cinema 4D or Maya.

One area he commented on is the lack of Ambient Occlusion control within Keyshot. I have not downloaded KS 4 yet, but will as soon as I finish up a project. On the web, when I did a search of Ambient Occlusion, I found a site that sells Keyshot that lists it as a feature. But I am betting its an error and Keyshot does not have Ambient Occlusion control.

From what my colleague tells me, that feature is very helpful to control shadow detail in grooves, partlines and things like connectors where they should look dark inside.

I've also found a few post where it was described that if you want Ambient Occlusion, you just render a pass where the part is made white and then use it in Photoshop. (Gloss white, or flat white I wasn't clear I understood that) That wasn't an acceptable option for my colleague since he's used other programs that include that functionality. So no post work is needed.

So in my usage of Keyshot from version 2 to 3, I figured out that I needed to increase Shadow Quality from 1 to 3 when in the Render settings for Quality and that usually makes the part line grooves look good. Before I knew that, I would get grooves that had no shadows in them! Either I don't totally understand my colleague's issue, or he's not using Keyshot right. The part he showed me looked okay, but he said no. It could be a matter of degree.

So, if someone in the know, perhaps Thomas or an expert user, help me understand the issue? It seems he can't get a shadow quality he's used to in those other programs. I'd like to show him he can!