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# Re: How does it compare?

COW Forums : Blender

 Re: How does it compare?by Paolo Ciccone on Mar 23, 2010 at 9:26:32 pm

>So triangles aren't as bad as one tutorial made them out to be? It
>seemed like those areas didn't react as well to being coverted to
>sculpt mode.

The advantage of quads is that you can simply subdivide them, while tris are more challenging. As a rule you use quads during modeling/sculpting, ZBrush love quads too, and then you can triangulate in the final result if you need. Keep in mind that every program store polygons using two sets of data. One set stores the vertices, like this:

```verts = [ x1, y1, z1 x2, y2, z2 x3, y3, z3 x4, y4, z4 x5, y5, z5 x6, y6, z6 ... and so on ]```

Another dataset defines the faces, polys, as a group of vertices referenced by their index:

```quads = [ 1 2 4 5 4 5 6 7 ]```

In this case we have two quads, one defined by vertices 1 2 4 5 and another defined by 4 5 6 7. Splitting a quad into a tri is simply a matter of re-arranging the indices, so quad #1 becomes two triangles by simply re-writing the geometry like this:

```tris = [ 1 2 4 4 1 5 ] ```

I'll try to write it in ASCII:
```
1   2
-----
|   |
|   |
-----
5   4

Becomes
1    2
-----
|\  |
| \ |
---\
5  4
```

All this to basically say that you can model in quads to make it easy to work and then convert it to tris if the rendering engine requires and it's a trivial transformation.

Regarding render power keep in mind that Pixar very rarely uses raytracing so, if you do the same you get to speed up your renders quite nicely. Every movie production uses literally hundreds if not thousands of cores for their rendering. I have a MacPro too and it's a fantastic machine. A little "render farm in a box" but, of course, it only provides 16 rendering threads so it there is just so much that it can do. For many animation it's perfectly sufficient, it's a matter of putting together a strategy and being careful with the resources.

The good news is that Blender, being FOSS and multiplatrform, allows you to install it on low-cost render nodes and you can expand your render queue considerably. For example you could use Amazon's EC2 cloud, which costs pennies per CPU, to do a rendering of portion of your animation. By creating a Linux-bases CPU image that includes Blender you can off load a lot to an additional 30-40 nodes at a very cost-effective price. Blender can render in batch mode from the command line so the RC2 solution would work just fine because you don't need the GUI to run the render node.

--
Paolo Ciccone
Pret-A-3D
http://www.preta3d.com
http://www.paolociccone.com