Part I: V-Ray Presets
In this section you’ll be learning the proper procedures when using the V-Ray Presets as well as best practices when creating your own custom presets. Below you'll find the different tools available and a brief explanation of what each tool is used for.
Preset Menu Bar - This menu bar provides all the necessary tools to use existing presets and create custom user specific presets.
Save - The “Save” icon is responsible for saving ALL options (edited or not) within the V-Ray Option Editor dialogue box as a .vropt or visopt file for later use. This tool allows very elaborate options to be saved for later use.
Load - The “Load” icon is responsible for loading any existing V-Ray setting (.vropt and .visopt). This function WILL REPLACE ALL options with in the V-Ray Options Editor dialogue box, erasing any existing changes made to the default settings.
Load Defaults - The “Load Default” icon is responsible for resetting the V-Ray Option editor to all of its default settings standard to the software.
Export - The “Export” icon will export only the settings altered up to that point in the V-Ray Options Editor. Any options left unaltered up to this point will remain the standard default settings when the .visopt file is created.
For example: If settings are changed in the Output dialogue box and saved via the “Export” button then the next time that file is imported, only the options in the Output dialog box will be altered.
Import - The “Import” icon is responsible for importing any previously saved .visopt file created. Importing using this method will only change the settings that were previously altered and exported to that file. No other dialogue boxes will be affected.
For example: If settings are changed in your Output dialogue box and then saved via the “Export” button a .visopt then only the settings in your Output dialogue box will be affected by importing that file.
The Presets - The “Presets” bar consists of two dropdown menus (see: Category and Category Presets below). Here you’ll find some useful pre-existing scene options for general settings, interior and exterior scenes, and some preset camera options. These standard options allow for some mixing and matching to occur as well.
Category - The “Category” preset dropdown menu comes standard with three separate categories; Camera, Exterior, and Interior settings. Each Category provides a number of presets corresponding to that category (see Category Presets below). Customizable presets can also be created based on a users prefered methods for rendering (see Part II; 2.1-2.9).
Category Presets - Each Category provides a drop down menu with a specific set of presets. The Exterior and Interior Category both provide preset settings ranging from very low quality, “Test Quality” settings to “Very High Quality” settings, these presets do not affect the Output, Environment or Camera settings.
The “Camera” category provides a number of camera options to properly expose an image in many different lighting situations. These presets ONLY effect the Camera settings in the V-Ray Option Editor and can be added to any of the Interior or Exterior presets.
Use Preset - The “Use Preset” icon applies the presets to the V-Ray Option Editor dialogue box () . This icon must be clicked to apply any of the presets currently selected in the the drop down menu.
Now that you’re familiar with what each icon does Part I of this tutorial will explore how to implement these presets properly. Lets get started by following the steps below.
1.1. Open any scene (something simple will work best) and begin by selecting the V-Ray Options Editor in your V-Ray toolbar.
1.2. Now that our option editor is open you should see all of your different options in the V-Ray Option Editor dialogue box. Here you can alter your scenes rendering options. Lets start by selecting one of V-Ray’s standard presets in the Exterior Category, then select the
Exterior preset: “02_Low_Quality_Exterior” and apply using the “Use Preset” () Button.
(see examples 1.3.a and 1.3.b)
1.3 Once applied to your scene, select render () and see how it affects your final result.
Now that we have a preset render setting in place, you can begin to add different camera settings to the option editor. These settings will only affect your “Camera” dialogue and nothing else in the option editor. To do this follow the steps below:
1.4 Under the drop down “Category" menu select “Camera”.
1.5 Now, under the Presets drop down menu, select a camera setting that best corresponds to the lighting situation in your scene. In this case we’ll select the “Cloudy Sky” preset and apply it by clicking the “Use Preset” () icon. (see examples 1.5a and 1.5b)
1.6. Once applied to your scene, select render () and see how it affects your final result.
This system of selecting a “Presets Category” then a “Preset” render setting is the same for each in the pull down menu. Try out a few of the different settings to see how they each affect your scene differently. To reset back to your default settings select the “Load Defaults” () button and move on to Part II.
Part 2 of this tutorial will explore the development of your own personal “Category” and “Category Presets” that can be reused across multiple scenes and projects. To do this follow the steps below:
2.1. Open your V-Ray Option Editor dialogue box () and expand your “Output” tab. The default settings here for a rendered scene are 800px by 600px (see example 2.1a).
2.2. Feel free to make a custom setting on your own, but in this case we will use a typical HD image with a 16:9 aspect ratio. In the Width category change the pixels to 1920 and in the Height category change it to 1080 pixels (see example 2.2a).
Now we need to save this new preset.
2.3. Select the “Export” icon () at the top of your V-Ray Options Editor. When you click save you'll be redirected to the containing folder if not the the file path can be found here:C:\ProgramData\ASGVIS\VfS\Presets\Options.
2.4. Once in the “Options” folder, go ahead and make a new folder. For our purposes we’ll name it “Output Presets”. (see example 2.4a)
2.5. Open the “Output Presets” folder.
2.6. Now save your new .visopt as 1080x1920
2.7.Close SketchUp and restart the program.
(note: no presets will take effect until you close and restart SketchUp)
2.8. Once SketchUp is reopened, open your V-Ray Options Editor (), and you should have a new addition to your “Categories” dropdown menu. (see example 2.8a)
2.9. Now click on the “Use Preset” icon () and your new custom output will be updated in your V-Ray Options Editor Output dialogue box.
In Part III of this tutorial we will explore the use of the “Save” () and “Load” () tools within the V-Ray Options Editor. This section is for more advanced scene setup where multiple dialogue boxes and extensive rendering options have been checked or changed. Remember when you use the “Save” icon, you save ALL of your settings to a file, and when you use the Load icon from that saved file, you will change ALL of your default settings to the new loaded .visopt file. Any previously made changes will be lost to your new settings. This function is best used to easily transfer extensively altered scene settings from one project to another.
In most cases it is best to save these extensive scene settings to your projects directory as you work. By saving out multiple .visopt files, you can make extensive adjustments and still load a previous version if the adjustments you made are not satisfactory.
3.1. Open a new scene and then open your V-Ray Options Editor ().
3.2. Alter your settings in your Options Editor as you see fit for the scene you’ve opened.
3.3. Once you have your settings put together in a way that best suites your scene, click the “Save” icon () to save the .visopt file. This will save all your settings to a .visopt file.
3.4. Create a new folder in your preset “Options” folder and open it. (see Part II: steps 2.4-2.8 for this process) Name the new folder “Project Presets” and save the .visopt file somthing that corresponds to the project you are currently working on . In this case I've used “001_TestProject” as my .visopt file name.
3.5. Close SketchUp and restart the program.
3.6. Open any new scene and open the V-Ray Options Editor ().
3.7.a) Click on your “Load” icon () and select the recently saved file, “001_TestProject.visopt”, from the “Project Presets” folder (the “Load” icon also allows you to browse your computer to for .visopt files saved in project folders or anywhere else on your computer, this comes in handy when looking for a packaged scene and model). Select the file and click open. It will immediately load ALL of your preset Option Editor settings. (remember this will change all your current settings to the selected new settings)
3.7.b) Because your .visopt file is also saved in the “Preset Options” folder we can also get to it via the dropdown menu. To do so, select it, use the Category drop down menu and select “Project Presets”. In your “Presets” category, select the “001_TestProject” and click the “Use Preset” icon () to apply the settings.
Now that you understand the general functionality of the Preset Options in the V-Ray Options Editor, play with your settings as much as you want. Save out lots of variations and explore all kinds of options without the fear of forgetting what you did. Have fun, and when you find something that works you can save it and use in projects later!