Maxwell | Key Features

Maxwell Studio's Approach to Cameras

Cameras in Maxwell Studio™ operate completely different from those in other render engines. Traditionally, most render engines use a pinhole camera. This type of camera simulates a tiny hole that allows light rays coming from the scene to reach the viewing surface. Instead, Maxwell Render™ simulates a real camera with the associated lens set, diaphragm aperture, diaphragm blades and various other settings. By using this type of camera model Maxwell Studio™ can automatically simulate depth of field or aperture diffraction.

Along similar lines, motion blur in Maxwell Studio™ is not produced as a post-process. Maxwell Studio™ considers the moving objects to have random positions along their trajectories during the camera shutter speed time. This creates a natural and realistic motion blur. Maxwell Render’s SimuLens™ system allows you to simulate the shape of the diaphragm, creating realistic lens diffraction effects. It is also possible to simulate the scattering of light inside a lens system, an effect typically called “bloom”.

A chart visually displaying 6 of the key features of Maxwell Studio.

Maxwell Studio's Approach to Lighting

Light sources in Maxwell Studio™ are defined by spectral characteristics and a light source usually possesses a lot of information about the intensity of emission at any of the possible wave lengths.

Maxwell Studio does not use abstract lights typically used in traditional 3D applications (distant, point, omni, spotlights). Instead, Maxwell Studio uses actual geometry with emitting materials. This approach to simulate lights emulates what happens in the real world and mimics real-world lights, producing a high degree of realism, outputting smooth shadows, providing a natural light distribution in your scene, and increasing the overall quality of your image. Maxwell Render can handle large numbers of lights in a scene without the performance loss sometimes experienced in other applications.

Lights in Maxwell Studio™ are created applying an emitter material to an object. You can adjust the color and intensity of the emitter using everyday terms like watts or efficacy, or you can look into more advanced definitions using lumens, lux, Kelvin degrees, and RGB. If you are new to Maxwell Render, it is best to start by selecting an emitter from the Presets dropdown.

Maxwell Studio's Approach to Materials

Maxwell Studior™ materials – called MXM – are defined in a physically correct manner by their BSDF functions (Bidirectional Scattering Distribution Function), making it possible to build up different layers of materials in the same object, like other BSDF or SSS (Sub Surface Scattering) effects. Thin coatings are also available for very subtle and realistic effects such as thin film interference effects for the multicolored look of a thin layer of oil in water, or soap bubbles. Maxwell Studio™ materials are not only physically correct but also very flexible and versatile. Bump/Normal Mapping, Displacement, Dispersion of light and Emitting properties are other characteristics available in the Maxwell material system.

With Maxwell Studio and its new stacked layers system, it is possible to create sophisticated materials easily. Materials can now be stacked in a layered way, so you can mimic many surfaces that are composed of different materials one over another.

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