It depends on your need. For architecture viz you could use Enscape - limited materials, but super fast for interiors and exteriors (render times are in seconds). It cost 45€ per month, so you could pay if you have a commercial project. A good GPU is useful, but not necessary.
@Czaja Good question - but definitely not now. I skipped 3.x and now I’m falling in love with VfR4 and GPU rendering. It’s not rocksolid like VfR2, but it’s on a good way - a lot of features, great quality and speed (for an offline renderer).
From time to time I recommend to look at Enscape too, since for a very limited use it’s a nice tool too. But V-Ray is the best allrounder for Rhino I know and Enscape is good for architecture stuff, but be careful, very limited.
Run _TestPackageManager and download PBR Materials and search for pbr workflow you should be able to get very decent results.
I actually don’t understand why many users underestimate the power of Cycles in Rhino. Nathan did a very good job with the implementation of it - sure some stuff feels slow but afaik it is still under dev but as a bundled renderer it gives wonderful results.
Image setup in 5 minutes used materials from Substance, Megascans and own lib all are based on textures from usual workflows (Base Color/Diffuse, Roughness and Normal Maps) + hdri lighting set up in environment panel.
@Gijs Cycles Core is the same so with enough effort you should be able to get this look. I didn’t work much with Cycles - however enough tested to say it can produce decent results - since as u noticed i work with Thea - cause of speed - i worked with many engines in Rhino and nothing compares to Thea speed in hybrid mode. Anyway in terms of shading with pbr materials you should be able to get any look in the same way which comes out of Principled Shader in Blender.
I know that V-ray can produce very good results but I had enough of V-ray for Rhino…
Last version I much better but anyway now I know even better that some stuff that made me angry at Rhino was because of V-ray.
It seems that chosgroup would like to be everywhere and because of that, they make one product for multiple programs (in Rhino version they even had descriptions referring to SketchUp).
They do very little to utilize stuff already prepared in Rhino. Grasshopper integration for most of the time was a joke and still is pretty bad IMO. As a Rhino user I always felt as third sort user. Which on the other hand is true, because in the world of rendering Rhino probably is in the third league.
For now I just moved away from offline renderers and I am happy in the UE4.
I look at Cycles with curiosity and maybe will test it for hobby or to preview mapping before exporting to Unreal.
I was only a personal statement, so I write “… I know”. I tested Thea some months before and don’t got it working for interiors. But your interior rendering looks great, nice photoreal. I hope we will see more of it. No problem for me if you find Thea is the best all rounder for you.
Also I used Octane for a few projects, because the nice realism at high reflections/refractions depth counts, but only the biased mode was working for my need, because than I got enough speed. The Octane 4 denoiser was a big step forward for interior renderings. But at Octane I missed simple lights for quick scene setups and so I leave it again. It was great for some specific projects for me.
Important for me is to have a render engine that allow to render so much as possible of the range of viz work. Enscape helps me to render interior fly throughs and dozen of views in a few minutes, that isn’t possible per V-Ray. Could be nice to hear where the advantages of Thea are.