Testing different renders

Blender internal, Cycles, Yafaray and Luxrender.

Nowadays you see many different free externel renderers for Blender. Therefore I’ve tried two external renderers and Blenders own and Cycles, which now comes in version 2.61. Not to compare them (as they are very different), but to see both strength and weaknesses as well. Looking online, you see amazing pictures, from all the renders presented, especially when the quality not only depends on renders that are used, but also the ability from those who uses them as well. Before this test, I have mostly worked on Blenders render and Yafaray. Also, I’ve come in touch with Luxrender and a bit of Cycles.

Blender rendertime 1h 56min

Render: Blender internal   Rendertime: 1 hour 56 min.


Cycles rendertime 1h 14min

Render: Cycles  Rendertime: 1 hour 18 min.


Yafaray rendertime 2h 23min

Render: Yafaray  Rendertime: 2  hours 56 min


Luxrender rendertime 12h 45min.

Render: Luxrender  Rendertime: 12 hours 45 min.


All images shown, have been rendered in original resolution 1500×435, and with the same studio setup. 3 mesh light or 3 area light (one on top, and one each side of the stage).

Blender internal render, it has gone to be outdated, and it is shown in the results. Sometimes  it is possible, but in general very hard to create photorealistic images. On the other hand, it works, if you on purpose, do not want the results to be photorealistic, because cheating with light and materials, is easy to preform. Generally Blender is also quite fast, and works for animations.

In the beginning, Cycles annoyed me a lot, especially the way you make the materials whit nodes. It was a completely different way, than used too, but must admit that I actually think it works pretty well. Cycles is very fast, and another advantage is of course to work with the scene, while it’s rendering. Definitely a render I will be using much in the future. The lower side to it is that it still crashes quite often, but in further developing, I am sure it will be corrected.

I really like Yafaray, and in general makes clear images. Materials are reasonably easy to set up, and you can create test renders quickly. At this stage, I am not pleased with the looks of this render, but also it can be hard to hit the right render-settings, and you will often have to correct some of them very often.

What I really like about Luxrender is that you can really get some photorealistic images. A clever thing though, would be while rendering, to correct the exposure, sensivity, fStop and ofcourse to correct on light, if you have shared the lighting up in different lighting groups. Furthermore, there are lots of other effects, such as noise reduction, lens effects and film response. On the other hand, rendertime is far from impressive. even after 12 hours there is still some noise in the image. However, there are many renderpressets which I have not tested, so with more knowledge, it would probably be possible, to cut the rendertime down.

So, which one is the best? It is hard to say, cause it all depends on which premisses you are looking at. If you make animations, Luxrender is probably not the best choice, because of the long rendertime. But if you are to create architectural interiors, Luxrender would be great, if having the time. For animations, Blender and Cycles would be preferable. For exteriors, Yafaray would be a good choice.