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holstarc

how to increase rendering speed

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greetings,my office has recently purchased renderworks, i am currently running an older G4 with 128Mb ram. I need to increase rendering speed to make this a useful tool. i belive additional ram (512 mb) and a graphics card will do this. Is there specific graphics cards that are more/less compatible with Vectorworks?Renderworks? what should i be looking for? specifics please.

Thanks for any help...

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If you are talking about RenderWorks rendering modes, then no. A faster graphics card will not have any noticeable effect. The RenderWorks system trades speed for quality by using the CPU in the computer to calculate out the image.

Having more RAM will help things in general, particularly if your system is already paging memory to the hard disk.

However, A more powerful graphics card will speed up your OpenGL rendering.

Matthew GiampapaNNA Technical Support

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quote:

1. Page scrolling speed. What component affects this and how can I speed up scrolling. If I have an imported PICT image, the speed really slows down.

This is really a 2D function of the video card. These days most current video cards have about the same 2D performance. It's 3D that's making all the progress these days. When you import an image, VectorWorks converts it into a uncompressed bitmap. Unfortunately these are just slow to work with in VectorWorks, particularly rotated images. If you find that the images are slowing you down a lot, you can tell the program to display them as boxes in the preferences, or you can class them and hide that class until it is time to print.

BTW, 9.5 and later have some improvements that makes scrolling a bit faster than it was in previous versions.

quote:

2. Rendering a wireframe. Is this strictly governed by CPU speed? Do the different modes use different methods, Lightworks vs. QuickDraw 3d vs. Final Shaded Solid, etc.

All rendering modes in VectorWorks with the exception of OpenGL and QuickDraw 3D are software based rendering systems. These two are directly impacted by the 3D hardware in your system.

Of the remaining rendering systems, they fall into two categories polygon based renderers, and line based renderers. Ultimately, these are governed by the speed of your CPU alone. However, if you were to graph rendering time and document complexity. The line based renders would increase in a linear fashion, while the polygon renders would be a curve of increasing slope.

(Everything but wireframe, Lightworks, and RenderWorks falls into the polygon category.)

quote:

3. What exactly is OpenGL rendering?

OpenGL is a 3D graphics system developed by SGI. It is cross platform and hardware accelerated on many systems. Apple has recently replaced QucikDraw3D with OpenGL in OS X and is asking developers to move away from QucikDraw3D in classic applications.

Note, version 8 for the Mac does not support this mode.

quote:

4. What will speed up rendered animations? If I try to do a 360 rotated view around a house model it can take 24 hours or more. For this reason I do not do these or walkthroughs. I have a second computer that I could use for rendering only, but VW will not allow two computers to run with one serial number.

The animation system was designed only with wireframe in mind. Back when it was developed, VectorWorks/MiniCAD did not have the advanced rendering capabilities it does today. In order to speed up your animations, you can render fewer frames per second, or reduce the size of the video. VectorWorks has to re-render each frame of the Video unless you are using a hardware accelerated mode like OpenGL or QucikDraw3D.

BTW, if you are using RenderWorks for these animations, RW in version 9 is about 100% faster then it was in version 8.

As for serial numbers, you need to have a license for each machine you are running on. Sorry, it's not my rule.

quote:

5. PIO speed. In the window PIO for example, there is a lag time for it to open. If I make any changes in the Object Info Pallete there is a lag time for the change to take effect. What can speed this up.

If we as users can understand the effect of CPU speed, bus speed, amount of memory, graphic card type and speed and memory on card; then we can make more informed purchasing decisions.

This is really dependent on the computer you are using. On the Mac, turning off virtual memory can really speed up PIOs. Otherwise we will continue to try and optimize performance as best we can in later versions.

Memory allocations vary by version and document complexity. The windows version and the OS X version all handle this automatically. On the Mac in version 9 you can allocate as much as you want to VectorWorks, but in version 8 you should keep a significant amount of memory free for the OS as Lightworks and the other rendering modes use that area to render.

I hope that helps.

Matthew GiampapaNNA Technical Support

[ 05-14-2002: Message edited by: Matthew Giampapa ]

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Matthew:Could you elaborate on this please. I think it would be very helpful to VW users to understand how various hardware components affect our daily use of these products. Here are some items that I have wondered about. I am using VW Architect 8.5.2 with Renderworks on a Mac G4/466 with OS9.2/

1. Page scrolling speed. What component affects this and how can I speed up scrolling. If I have an imported PICT image, the speed really slows down.

2. Rendering a wireframe. Is this strictly governed by CPU speed? Do the different modes use different methods, Lightworks vs. Quickdraw 3d vs. Final Shaded Solid, etc.

3. What exactly is OpenGL rendering?

4. What will speed up rendered animations? If I try to do a 360 rotated view around a house model it can take 24 hours or more. For this reason I do not do these or walkthroughs. I have a second computer that I could use for rendering only, but VW will not allow two computers to run with one serial number.

5. PIO speed. In the window PIO for example, there is a lag time for it to open. If I make any changes in the Object Info Pallete there is a lag time for the change to take effect. What can speed this up.

If we as users can understand the effect of CPU speed, bus speed, amount of memory, graphic card type and speed and memory on card; then we can make more informed purchasing decisions.

Thank you for your imput

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