OctaneRender or V-Ray for rendering architectural interiors?

My cost for OctaneRender:
(app $379 USD + EVGA GeForce GTX670 4GB, $450) = $850

My cost for V-Ray:
$960 USD + (existing Sapphire 7950) = $960

If the pricing I’ve found is accurate, only about $100 difference for me.

New to Rhino and running under bootcamp. To see and revise lighting and materials, Octane’s GPU capability is of particular interest.

Appreciate any thoughts/guidance on this.

It’s a question of what you want to do? What kind of viz work, how often, how complex are your scenes … ?

Thanks Micha

Most of the spaces I model are atriums and now working on an airport sculpture proposal. So, fairly large interiors. And I develop 3-4 proposals a year spending 2-4 weeks per for modeling and rendering.

Just learning Rhino. Previous work in StrataCX where renderings are rather “informational,” not of the quality needed to help sell the concepts. I need realistic renderings in the direction of this V-ray gallery image:

New to Rhino + some new renderer, many bum renderings is inevitable. So, looking to compress that feedback loop as much as possible. Have 2 month deadline on current proposal. A lot to learn.

running Windows 8, Rhino 5 under Bootcamp
MacPro 5,1
6-Core Intel Xeon, 3.33 GHz

Interiors and realistic lighting … I would take Vray,try the demo. The biased method LC+IM allow to get a realistic lighting and best speed. Additional you could some little detail enhancement like DE or GI ambient occlusion. The LC pass is quite stable, the IM pass needs some higher subdivs if splotches should be visible.Take a look at the chaosgroup Rhino forum “tutorials…” where you should find a starterkit with some infos how to start.

Dont get me wrong but I think that you initail investment calculation is wrong.
For rendering with OCTANE with some normal rendering times (not +24hours) youll need to buy at least 3 EVGA GeForce cards.
Im kinda in situation as you. Looking for an rendering engine for Rhino.
So far THEA or VRAY

I think Thea is the best value for money:

  • Biased, Unbiased and GPU renderer
  • Standalone+many plugins
  • Windows, Mac, Linux
  • Chaper
    and many more.

Thanks guys for your most helpful comments.

"at least 3 EVGA GeForce cards"
Gosh, is that true??

Maybe not.
I went thru OCTANE forum and found few guys who are using it with Rhino. I think they are present here also. Anyway heres an egsample of interior rendering with one card in 9 minutes.

I hope we can get some attention for Octane Rhino useres and maybe have some insight or a review of Octane for Rhino.

Seems that Im very wrong:

LAst time I was checking out OCTANE was 2 years ago and since then GPU have many new affordable series.
I hope Im right…

Hello Guys,

since i was asked by picajol in the octane forum to give some first hand info (since I use both), i will try to summarize some of my recent experiences with both render engines.

I is a bit hard, since it is quite a complex task, both packages are absolutely great imho, they excel in different areas.

First of all it is important to note that both engines come from different directions, although vray4Rhino has been receiving gpu rendering support (as part of the vray RT engine) in recent times, these capabilities are not 100% developed until now imho. So vrays origin is CPU rendering which can be done one one single computer or on a huge network. Octane4Rhino on the other hand is strictly gpu based rendering and until now limited to one machine, so it is by far not as scalable a v4r. At this point I have to say that concerning to Otoy there are current developments to change this and even to enable a cloud based commercial gpu power support.

Vray is a program which is used by many professionals around the world for many years now. It is very reliable and has tons of possibilities to archive every imaginable outcome. It has been used for several hollywood productions. I have been rendering resolutions with this package up to 150 megapixel! It has many ways to optimize render performance by doing e.g. undersampling passes and lets you control every fraction of the render process. While this is great for experienced professionals because it lets you fine tune every aspect of the process to cut down your frametime (especially important when doing animations…) it might become an obstacle for new users. Generally speaking the big range of options is often somewhat frightening to noobs and it takes you some time to find your way around. Vray was originally created for 3D Studio, and some of the 3D Studio features are not fully present in the rhino version, especially when looking at animation features ( incremental IR map passes, motion Blur…)

Octane is a relatively young engine. A great feature is the ability to see changes made to materials an lightning in real time. It offers different rendering pipelines, one is the ambient occlusion pipeline which can deliver very very fast but biased (no diffuse reflections!) visual feedback. So you really can save a whole lot of time when tweaking and experimenting with light and material. This is very nice for experienced users but even more useful for the new ones.
Like vray octane knows proxies, which is important for vegetation, it can use obj. files for that purpose which is nice.

The Octane render process is iterative which means a picture is permanently gaining quality which means it get less and less noisy.
While it is pretty straightforward in octane to create a decent interior picture of a simple room with the AO pipeline within 30 min (depending on your GPUs), there are situations when you can run into serious problems right now, when doing big interiors with many artificial light sources and the “unbiased” engines DL, PCM or pathtracing. Getting “noise free” hires pictures here can be quite time consuming and here the time gained in the “developing phase” of the rendering can often be lost by the render process itself. Another factor is the fact that octane is quite limited, again depending on your GPU, how much textures can be used in the scene. While this is not that much of an issue when you have one or more GTX Titans with 6GB Ram it can easily become a problem when you have e.g. a gtx 590 with 3GB which is further divided by 2 for each GPU resulting in 1,5 BG for texture usage!

Concerning the price it is a bit hard to tell, the initial price for the software is 279 Euro for the standalone version + the plugin which is a bargain imho. Vray is around 700 Euro which is also great for this software.
however to get optimal performance you also need to invest in your hardware, which means CPU power for vray or gpu for octane. At this point it gets quite complicated because you cannot compare both programs in an objective way concerning the given performance / Euro.
Vray can use a grid of computers e.g. in a larger office this is very nice, octane right now is limited to one machine which should be equipped with a few good GPUs and a good power supply and cooling.

That it from my side at the moment when i have time i might come back and tell a bit more about certain aspects of both programs…

best regards


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Andreas, thanks for your notes on Vray/Octane. Helpful community here.
The way I’m interpreting this is that, for someone new to Rhino, Flamingo may be the more reasonable step up in rendering capability—given the two month learning curve I have to work within.

I think Flamingo is an other story. Some years before I bought Flamingo and I was very disappointed about the outdated render engine, extreme slow and very basic features only. If I look at the Flamingo nXt gallery now, than I get the old feeling - the interiors looks like the beginning of rendering. I would prefer Octane. Or maybe the free Neon.

VCube thank you very much for your informative insight on both Vray and Octane renderer.
If you dont mind I would like to ask you few more questions on the OCTANE.

"While it is pretty straightforward in octane to create a decent
interior picture of a simple room with the AO pipeline within 30 min
(depending on your GPUs),

So OCTANE has also few rendering option to choose from, AO like you said, and unbiased one. These are DL, PCM? Can you tell us a bit more oaboth these. What is the difference? YOu said AO is the fastes of them all but with lack of blurry reflections?

While this is not that much of an issue when you have one or more GTX
Titans with 6GB Ram it can easily become a problem when you have e.g.
a gtx 590 with 3GB which is further divided by 2 for each GPU

Can you finish a job with a 1,5GB GTX card? Eg. small residnetial exterior, interior? Is the RAM soze only dependet on the textures or on the geometry of the scene also?

Speaking of graphic cards, me personaly cant afford a 2xTITAN card , its just to exprensive. But I found an german article comparing high end GPUs and “old” GTX580 still seem like very good cards and very affordable. around 200€.
So putting up an configuration with 2xGTX580 dont seem like a problem. But my question is what problems would you run into if you put 4xGTX580, how the hell to cool that thing? I think that would have to be aditional big investmen on cooling and problem would probably be where can you fit 4 GPUs with liquid cooling?

Oposite to stacking GPUs inside your case for VRAY you can get old dual core or quad cores for 150€-300€ without having a overheating problems. Something to think aboth maybe too.

One ore time thanx for your input and would again like to hear you answers and thoughts on my statements.

Hello Mario, thank you for your kind words,

i will try to answer your questions…

  1. yes octane has different engines, basically these are
    I. AO pure ambient occlusion - no real diffuse reflections, lightning fast both even on interiors, when used the right way in combination with good hdr images can create great pictures within minutes, but because of its lackage concerning diffuse reflection bounce is limited per definition.
    II. DL is a Pipeline with diffuse bounces but no caustics and complex light transmittance effects in order to make it faster than PMC or pathtracing
    III. PMC + Pathtracing are similar and feature the whole range of complex ligh effects at the cost of significantly more render time.

for more information you should look in the octane manual:

  1. well you can finish a lot of jobs with 1,5 GB ram but not all… the bottleneck seems to be the number of textures you use, this can become an issue e.g. when you have a lot of 3D people or alike in your scene…
    The question which gpu to buy is not so easy to answer… I have bought a used gtx 590 (that is a dual gtx580…) for 250 Euro and its a good start. Note that this thing gets very, very hot especially when used in limited space near to another gpu… you have to have a cooling concept.

liquid cooling is a good option and (nearly) the only way to have a 4X configuration…

Concerning vray I bought 4 render slave computers last year with Intel ci7-3370k quadcore CPUs (8treaths) for about 550 Euro each which do a very decent job, rendering an average exterior of 8 MPX in about 10 minutes…

best regards


Andreas, wich one of the two software do you find more user friendly and stable when working with Rhino?
Forgot to ask one thing, OCTANE only uses GPU power right? It cannot use GPU+CPU at the same time?

@ Mario: I think one problem shouldn’t be overseen - what is if your project run against a limitation of GPU rendering? For example if your rendering needs to much time or your GPU memory is to small? If I would use Octane than I would like to have an alternative engine for difficult projects. But maybe you know your project stay within the limitations. From Vray I know that the limits are quite far away. Andy has the freedom to choose between the advantages of Octane and Vray.

side note - diffuse reflection doesn’t mean blurry reflection. Andy means diffuse bouncing light (indirect GI light) isn’t calculated by AO.

Mario, concerning your question both programs are very stable, although i have to say that I have not tested octane on big commercial projects, whereas i have done over 400 projects ranging from big sport arenas to residential homes with vray.
User friendliness is kind of relative, you can say that for a noob, octane is probably easier to learn but this is also due to the vast amount of possibilities and tweaks vray offers.

Micha is absolutely right when he talks about the possibilities of hitting barriers, right now vray is the more proven and versatile tool, but octane is very young and has a lot of potential…

As I said octane is pure GPU powered, e.g. arion can use GPU and CPU together but this does not necessarily mean that arion is faster than octane. I used a few render engines and octane feels very fast…


If I would use Octane than I would like to have an alternative engine for difficult projects

Agree 100% with you Micha. And this is very I got interested in THEA render. I recently got involved in very interesting discussion here:

THEA realy seem to have a bright future and this new CPU+GPU feature thats is going to be implemented in december seems realy interesting.

note - diffuse reflection doesn’t mean blurry reflection. Andy means diffuse bouncing light (indirect GI light) isn’t calculated by AO.

So its just one light bounce, no 2nd, 3rd,4th…?

I yet have to decide in wich software to invest my time…

Right, AO doesn’t show diffuse bouncing light and so the render can be looking more artificial, less real. For example my impression is that Brazil renderings show a grey look because the usage of AO or limited bounces. One big advantage of Vray is, that the image calculion based on the light cache pass, where light “unlimited” bounce around. This pass is the base for the following biased pass (irradiance map).
For example if you have a room with furniture, than the lighting behind the furniture is caused by the indirect light bouncing around. I’m not sure it’s a good example. :slight_smile:

-( …I dont understand you.
Ist term GI related to infinite light bouncing (indirect light)?