With the release of Visualizer for Maya 1.2, we’ve modified a few of the settings in the Visualizer Viewport dialog box to make it easier to achieve a desired frame rate and image quality in the Maya viewport. For a detailed explanation, check out the documentation in our user guide. And for those you who would rather read the cliff notes, then take look at the Visualizer Viewport Settings below and view our latest video tutorial from artist Justin Schubert.

Visualizer lets you see the results in real time, rather than endlessly poking at a slider, hitting “render this frame”, not liking the result, poking at the slider, hitting “render”… Visualizer is really all about freeing you, the designer, from esoteric rendering theory so that you can create the images you desire.  Here are the settings to help you make the most of this power:

Multi Pass Rendering

  • Auto Progressive: This toggle enables/disables the fractional passes and Target FPS option below.
  • Target FPS: Controls how many viewport fractional passes will be performed. Higher frames per second (FPS) will mean a more “chunky” but smoother-moving image. (default -10fps)
  • Total Passes: The total number of passes, excluding fractional passes. This controls the final resulting viewport image quality. (default 10)
  • Initial Pass Quality: the number of rays per pixel for the first, fractional pass(es).
  • Adaptive Toggle: Turns adaptive multi-pass on and off.
  • Threshold (%): The maximum allowed intensity variation for a pixel’s computed brightness before it is considered “done.” (default 0.2%)
  • Min Passes: the number of passes to complete before using adaptive sampling.

Advanced Ray Tracing

  • Min Contribution (%): If a ray will contribute less than this amount to the pixel’s color, don’t emit it. (default 0.5%)

Advanced Global Illumination
Note: Global Illumination must be turned on (toggle Enable Diffuse on in the Maya Render Settings) to take advantage of these settings

  • Max GI Rays: The maximum number of GI rays per pass used when shading a surface
  • Enable Caustics: Allows GI rays to be reflected and refracted. (default OFF)