Chapter 45. Working with Advanced Lighting, Light Tracing, and Radiosity

If you were to walk into a dark room and reach for the light switch, you would be confused if you found a separate switch that controlled the advanced lighting. But in Max the advanced lighting controls are worth the trouble. They enable you to take your lighting solution to the next level.

The advanced lighting controls in Max enable you to light scenes using two separate global illumination techniques known as light tracing and radiosity. Both solutions deal with the effect of light bouncing off objects and being reflected to the environment.

Light tracing is typically used for outdoor scenes where the light consists of a single powerful light source at a far distance from the scene. Light tracing includes support for color bleeding between surfaces. Another aspect of light tracing is that the shadows are softer.

Radiosity computes lighting solutions that are much more realistic than using standard lights. As you learn to use radiosity, you quickly discover that it is a complex system that takes lots of tweaking to get just right.

Selecting Advanced Lighting

You control the advanced lighting settings for the scene in the Advanced Lighting panel, which is part of the Render ...

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