Maxwell Render, is it dead?



Yes, me too.

I have the same feeling :wink:



Well, I think the implementation of Maxwell 5 into Rhino 6 is a big step forward. On the mac you have now FIRE working, the material editor is better integrated, the renderer is faster and Multilight is a revelation. You are able to generate a light animation or multiple lighting setups out of just one render.

Many companies have issues inside, that is normal. But Next Limit was the first company to make their render plugin avalible for Rhino Mac. And that was my personal reason to switch from V-Ray to Maxwell.

Right !
The soul of Maxwell is where the core developers Oscar Cano and Albert Martinez are. Currently, the spirit of Maxwell is in “Bella”.


I have a Maxwell 4 license (node-locked) + 10 render nodes for sale if anyone is interested.

they cancelled all my licenses and nodes without preliminary notice, after a long silence.
They’re already dead for me.

I am using Maxwell as plugin in Rhino 6. I did have a lots of problem making it work at the begining but with help from Next Limit we made it work.
The interface has changed a lot since the Rhino 5 so I had to re-learn a lots of things, also there are still some bugs. Otherwise, it still gives great results and yes, slow!

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Yes, and a third release of the Maxwell 5 Rhino plugin has just been made available.

For me it works fine till now. A big step forward is the better integration with Rhino materials.

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They were always helpful when I had to contact them. Have you tried to get in contact?

No. when I discovered that, I lost any interest in them and their product.
I’d been a contributor. They published some of my renderings in their own publications and on the manual I’d been very active on MXWL, and I loved it.
But I don’t consider them any longer. Dead man walking for me.

Yesterday I tried the new version for mac

They have now integrated their material editor into Rhino. If you create emitters for example you don’t have no longer to create mxm materials but can change the properties directly in the rhino dialogue. This is another step ahead and helps my workflow.

I knew I made a mistake buying Maxwell. I’ll check if they voided my licenses too. If so, I’ll add the people behind Maxwell to the “you’re dead to me” list. There’s no coming back from that in my book. Unlucky for them, I’m really active online and just LOVE to rant online. RIP.

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I recently upgraded to Maxwell 5 for Rhino Mac, and it’s a big improvement, by which I mean I can actually use it now. I was reluctant to give NextLimit more money after paying for Maxwell 4, because that was essentially unusable, but for the renderings I do, there’s really no alternative on Mac or Windows as far as I know.

(I will definitely look into Bella, though).

If your goal is to produce good-looking images, there are lots of options, most of which are faster, cheaper, easier to use, or all three. But the point of something like Maxwell is, instead of you telling it how your image should look, it tells you what your design will look like in real life (we should probably call it a “simulator”, not a “renderer”). And, to be fair, the core application is very good at that. If you give it the right materials and lighting, it will predict exactly what your design will look like before you make it, which is very valuable in my work (art fabrication).

Once you get that simulation running, it’s great – compared to similar software I’ve seen, it’s not even that slow – but the interface for getting a render set up in the first place is a train wreck. It’s all badly laid-out, nonstandard Qt dialog boxes with tiny fonts; it crashes a lot; it forgets settings so you have to write them down on paper; it gets confused about Windows vs. Mac file paths; it outputs files in weird secret locations; the documentation is sparse and out of date; etc.

I wouldn’t recommend it as a general renderer, and it’s painful to use, but if it’s what you need then you can get good results with the current version.

(I only use it for still images, with a single node; I wouldn’t invest in a Maxwell render farm, because I don’t have that much confidence in NextLimit)


And how is your current pipeline (sw) on your art fabrication?

It works OK now. The problem with the previous version (apart from having to switch to Rhino 5) was that I had to set up the scene, export it to Maxwell’s MXS format, and then open that in the Maxwell Studio application (:face_vomiting:) to edit the materials, environment, location, camera settings etc.; if I needed to change anything in the scene, I had to start all over again.

With the current version, I can set up and preview all the Maxwell stuff within Rhino, and it’s all saved with the Rhino document. (The actual renderer is still a separate application). I should add, I’ve only been using Maxwell 5 for about a week and there may be problems I haven’t found yet.

In Maxwell, you don’t set up light objects (apart from the sky / HDRI), instead, you create light sources by applying emitter materials to geometry. Once you get used to that, that works well – for instance, if I want to render a gallery interior, I can apply the manufacturer’s IES files for the exact types of lighting used in the gallery and see an accurate simulation of how the work will look. But it’s very clumsy if you cannot edit the materials inside Rhino, so I wasn’t able to do that kind of work for the last year or so.

Producing a final render always takes at least 10 or 20 minutes, and it can take many hours for a complicated scene. For me that is not a big problem, because I spend most of my time modeling, not rendering, so I can just leave it running in the background or overnight.


Hey! Any update to this? I use V-Ray on on my workstation PC but I travel a lot with a MacBook and I’d love to render on my new M1X MacBook when I’m not at my workstation. Honestly, V-Ray is very comfortable and it became really good over the last few years. No idea why they are not developing it for Mac.

very small group of users. classic

I have just reopened maxwell for arkviz render, well compared to old ui its 10 steps backwards, No integrated material editor, options spread around with no info where they are and studio not part of the license anymore. V-ray has better integration and even if i love maxwell images i think going to leave it for v-ray.

The idea you get is ‘lets make a plugin for rhino just to keep it in our list’


It’s up to Arkviz