Fri, 13 Jun 2008 Artlantis Render 2 and Studio 2 Review
3D rendering application gives instant life to architectural projects
- Manufacturer: Artlantis
- Pros: Stunning renders, ability to calculate radiosity in real time, intuitive user interface, fairly low learning curve, excellent animation capabilities
- Cons: Premium price for additional animation options, licence can be activated on only one computer at a time (although option to deactivate and activate without uninstalling and reinstalling allows some flexibility)
- Price: Artlantis Render 2 £445.30, Artlantis Studio 2 £797.80 (both inc VAT)
- Star rating:
Artlantis has added a number of impressive new features to its rendering software for architects, designers and CAD users. The latest versions of Artlantis Render and Studio offer enhanced lighting, photo-realism, rendering quality, and a redesigned user-friendly interface.
The improved rendering engine lets you generate accurate radiosity images in real time within the 3D preview window. A new ‘physical sky’ adds illumination, with the sun, moon and stars reflecting light on your designs, while realistic cloud formations and automatic light adjustment add drama. Image post-processing and stylistic effects are now included within Artlantis, and a new shader creator and optional rich media content add more possibilities.
A little confusingly, the latest version of Artlantis is available in two variants, the significantly cheaper Render offering an almost identical list of tools and features. However, the additional £350 investment in Artlantis Studio provides scope for animating and adding QuickTime VR panoramas and objects to static renders. The results, both still images and animations, can be exceptional in the right hands, with around 3,000 mostly stunning user images posted on the Artlantis website.
VectorWorks, ArchiCAD and SketchUp export directly to the Artlantis format, and you should have few problems dealing with commonly used 3D formats such as DXF, DWG, DWF, OBJ, FBX and 3DS. New in this version is compatibility with the SpaceNavigator 3D mouse, giving the potential to simultaneously pan, zoom and rotate 3D imagery, allowing you to perform intricate adjustments to camera views and models with ease.