OptiX pros/cons vs. other renderers

I’m having a hard time trying to determine the pros / cons of all the renderers found here

i.e. Are there specific cases where you would need to use OptiX, or IRAY, or Arnold, etc.?

OptiX is a ray tracing library you can use to build a rendering application, it is not a renderer. You can see on that page that some of the commercial applications listed there are built using OptiX.

If you just need to use an existing renderer, then the choice depends on your needs. All of those commercial renderers are amazing, and the tradeoffs aren’t as much about high level pros and cons these days, they’re much more about addressing certain markets and specific use cases. There are reasons you might want a particular one. Visit their web sites and you may notice the descriptions of themselves give you clues about what market they’re trying to address.

You’ll also want to decide what kind of result you need (interactive, still images, animation, film, visualization, lighting simulation, etc.), figure out what authoring tools you want to use, what scene formats you need to support, how many people are on your team and what their experience level is, whether you have one computer or a farm or want to render in the “cloud”, and of course last but not least your budget.

I can’t make any generic suggestions, but if you want to share more about what you’d like to do and what your constraints are, we might be able to offer some hints.


“OptiX is a ray tracing library you can use to build a rendering application, it is not a renderer.”

Thank you, that clears things up. It appears the user defined per ray payload will be useful to analyze a number of different problems.