Cheerilee’s Gmod Pony models for Blender baked for 5 hours, 56 minutes, and 15 seconds in Luxrender. The image achieved 2.17 Thousand Samples per Pixel at 1080p (1920x1080).
This was done with Blender and Luxrender like the last two, and with the same hardware configuration, with the exception that I fed Luxrender all 4 of my CPU cores for 4 hours of that render time. This was Bidirectional Path Tracing with Metropolis Light Transport again, with the one change being the tone Mapping kernel was swapped to MaxWhite from Auto Linear in the last image, this made the image less grey.
That said, I learned a couple things from this run through:
First I learned Luxrender 0.08 (the current stable release) does not properly support OpenCL GPU computation, so my graphics card wasn’t receiving its proper share of the work in that last render. As a result of that, I set this run through to be purely CPU based, and fed the extra core to make it faster overall.
Second I learned that rendering in 1080p is something I do NOT want to do on a regular basis. It took FIVE HOURS of baking to create this image.
Third, I have no idea how to properly export textures into Luxrender along with the models from Blender.
Fourth, I learned that Luxrender does not converge an image well with high-poly models. If you don’t understand what that means, look closely for the white dots in this image. They only appear around the models themselves and appear to be artifacts of low sampling rates and non existent caustics that the renderer hasn’t sampled out yet. For this image though, which was merely a proof of concept for the quality of the models themselves, five hours was more than enough. Besides, theoretically, what is left could be simply blurred away by a soft blur. Based on what I’ve seen and heard, 44 thousand samples per pixel would likely eliminate those dots, but it would require me leaving my computer on for 5 days (121.658986 hours) if I can’t get my graphics card working with this.
Overall this was a learning experience, and definitely taught me quite a lot about these tools and this particular rendering algorithm and how they both behave.
I apologize for the camera positioning, I did not start this with the intention of baking it, but ended up doing it anyway for the sake of time on my part. I realized I would need to check the quality of the models at some point, and this camera angle was good enough for Celestia, who was the main focus of this test.
Incidentally, tell me if this works as a decent desktop background.
EDIT: 1080p version here!