This page provides a tutorial on universal settings for V-Ray that work for most still images.


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The "universal" settings comprise a set of settings that we have found to work very well for still images in many situations. Please note that these settings are not optimal, in the sense that with enough tweaking, you can probably get similar quality with faster render times. The beauty of these settings, though, is that they require almost no tweaking, and you are guaranteed to get a good result in the end.

The advantages of these settings are:

  • very little parameters for controlling render quality vs. speed (essentially, only the Noise threshold )
  • works for a very large number of scenes
  • produce high-quality results

Of course, there is a disadvantage: the scene may render quite slow. With tweaking, you may get faster results.

These settings work because the high AA subdivs essentially cause all the sampling to be performed by the image sampler. It will take as many samples per pixel as required to achieve the specified noise threshold. In many ways, this is similar to PPT (progressive path tracing), but is done on a per-bucket basis and the number of samples is adaptive for each pixel.


Starting with V-Ray 3.3, the default settings in V-Ray are very close to the approach described here.


Setting the V-Ray Renderer

1. Set V-Ray as the current rendering engine (with the default V-Ray settings).

2. In the  Image sampler  rollout, switch the image sampler Type  to  Adaptive or Progressive . Set the Max. subdivs to 100. Leave the Min. subdivs to 1.

3. In the Indirect illumination rollout, Turn GI on, set the Primary GI engine to Brute force. Do not change the Subdivs. Set the Secondary GI engine to Light cache.

4. You can also control the noise levels from the Image sampler rollout by adjusting the Clr. thresh instead (e.g. to 0.005).

5. You can control the amount of AA vs shading samples (for materials/lights/GI) using the Min shading rate parameter. Values are typically between 6 to 16, although the default value should work fine for the majority of scenes.



  • Normally you would leave all subdivs anywhere at their default values. They  won't have any effect anyways - the 100 AA subdivs will almost certainly override everything else. However, some speed can be gained by spending a bit more samples on the shading effects (glossy reflections, lights,GI, etc.) than on AA. You can do this either globally through the Min shading rate parameter, or by increasing the subdivs of individual effects beyond those of the AA sampler.
  • Avoid using sharpening AA filters. They can make the noise more apparent.