« Last post by transient on October 18, 2014, 09:22:53 PM »
Imo think the main advantage over Blender, apart from the gui and scene organisation which is frustrating for many (including me), is the rendering pipeline.
Shade's renderer has the quality of yafaray, but is much faster and has a lot more features (passes, render comparisons, easier shaders, can save the irradiance cache, can view the gi dots while rendering, real-time view a'la keyshot etc. etc. etc.). All this makes workflow much easier and faster. The raytracer is extremely fast as well.
I also love how you can render out lightprobes using your scenes, and layer ibl's in the background. It means I can have easy light setups (a map for rim lighting, another for fill, reflections etc.) and multiply them together. This can slow down shade, but if you keep the maps a reasonable size it doesn't matter, and it makes for quick presentation lighting setups.
I won't bother comparing Shade with Blender's internal renderer which is fast, but dated.
Cycles is good quality, but I couldn't resolve noise in on my machine without taking hours. Same problem with Octane, although Octane is very nice, especially it's path tracer. Shade is almost noise free and I can render same scene in minutes on an 8 core AMD chip. This is simply not possible with Blender imo with the current options.
Octane is a different "type" of renderer than shade and is very pretty, but the standalone version drove me nuts. If I used Blender, I would also use Octane. Simple as that.
So basically along with the core stuff, Shade much better for me than Blender for stills. I had the option to upgrade Octane also. This meant 200 euro for upgrade and plugin (probably for Carrara). At least a thousand dollars for a gpu to make rendering feasible with my precious time. Instead I spent 200 bucks on a competitive upgrade for Shade. No brainer for me.
Blender also has a few features I would like to see in shade. Mainly the uv tools and the painting app. Blender excels if you want an end-to-end solution in the one app, and you are willing to make compromises in workflow, but you can get amazing results as is evident in their short movies.
However, the core rendering options are too slow for me, and I don't want to fork out for a titan to make it as fast as Shade for the same output. Blender isn't free. You need to buy good hardware, pay for training (unless you want to be a permanent noob), and deal with the fact that blender changes things often, sometimes making older training redundant/ difficult.
Where Shade falls down for me is the viewports. I find modeling in Shade a struggle sometimes as I can't seem to get the cameras to behave how I expect. When you rotate above the 360, the interface flips and rotates, rather like gimble lock. When you zoom in or are viewing a model at certain angles, "eye and target" seems to zoom instead. It sometimes feels like a shopping trolley when you want to zoom around your model and look at it at different angles quickly.
There are also no maya controls. For me, if I got to pick ten upgrades to shade, maya controls and a dedicated modelling viewport (similar to hexagon ideally) would be my top nine. More training would be my tenth.
I could go on about many other things I like (and some things I don't like) about Shade, but for me it gives vray-max quality and speed (more or less), for much less money, and I really like Shade's scene organisation far more than other apps as well (the Browser is genius imo).
To be honest, trolling forums like this about Blender being "free and more powerful" also presents the single biggest downside of Blender. That is, the fact that it's users routinely troll forums like this........I don't get it.