Blender 2.80 Addon

This addon allows rendering high quality images and animations. The addon converts the simulation scene into a blender scene and then renders the scene into image(s). Blender is an open-source 3D modeling, animation, rendering and video editiging software. The Addon utilizes the new real time render engine Eevee available in the Blender 2.8. Rendering can be done as a backround task, which will output the result automatically into a image file or a video straight from Visual Components or the scene can be opened in the Blender for further tweaking. Animations can be rendered to video files.

Installing:

  • Download Blenderer2 zip file
  • Extract to Blenderer2 zip file to the My Command folder
    • C:\Users<USERNAME>\Documents\Visual Components<VC VERSION>\My Commands\ …
  • Download and install Blender 2.90 or newer
  • Restart the Visual Components application

Getting started:
https://youtu.be/sjIYvQjPHWM

Documentation:
Blenderer_2.1.0.pdf (343.2 KB)

EDITS

EDIT 2019-09-19:

  • New 2.0.1 version.
  • Bug fixes and optimization
  • Dynamic component creation and delete issue fixed
  • Improved shadow settings
  • Robot "Smart Materials"
  • Material related properties on separate tab in GUI
  • Animation recording generates a video (avi) file automatically after everyframe is rendered.
  • Bloom intensity property
  • Tooltips
EDIT2 2019-09-19 (15:26CET):
  • New download link. Previous link was wrong.
EDIT3 2019-12-12 (17:16CET)
  • New version 2.0.2 that supports Blender 2.8.1 version.
  • Texture scaling factor has changed. Note this if you are defining custom materials with the csv table.
EDIT4 2020-06-01
  • New version 2.0.3 that supports Blender 2.82 version.
  • Minor bug fixes and performance tweaks.
  • Sparks emitter under lights tab to visualize e.g. welding.
EDIT5 2020-09-29: New improved version 2.1.0.
  • It’s faster: Both export from VC and import to Blender optimized
  • User configurable property defaults (defaults.xml)
  • Reset properties to defaults button on advanced tab
  • New shadow catcher floor style (Set Env map not visible and 0 strength, choose as floor style and add hard lighting like a sun light)
  • Path blender.exe not hard coded. Asks user to locate the executable if not found in the default location.
  • Supports non ascii characters in the uri paths. Windows usernames with non ascii characters were causing issues before.
  • Opens the output image automatically after rendering
  • Default output file is now under the default windows Pictures folder
  • Auto-increments the output file name (doesn’t overwrite an existing render)
  • User can choose AVI or MP4 as the video container (avi for reliability or mp4 for portability)
  • Uses Windows %temp% folder when porting the scene from VC to Blender
  • Other minor bug fixes

EDIT6 2021-08-25: New version 2.2.0 available
What’s new 2.2.0:

  • Edge rendering option on the advanced tab to allow toon shader type visualization
  • Light strength value is now keyframed allowing animation of light brightness changes
  • Floor bumpmap strenght controllable
  • Improved unicode support
  • Handles corrupted material textures (e.g. missing texture file doesn’t crash the render)
  • Fixes an issue that caused Spot light type lamp to misorient
  • Improved image framing. Default camera FOVY set to 33 as VC default FOVY is 35
  • Fixes an image framing issue in portrait mode
  • Lights appear in front of the camera when adding lamps to scene instead of behind the camera
  • Area light placeholder model redesigned
  • Other minor bug fixes and performance improvements
  • Tested with: 4.3.1 (2021-04-26) and Blender 2.93.1

EDIT 2022-09-06:

  • no changes to the addon
  • Fixed the broken download link to the addon on this post
  • cleaned up the instructions
9 Likes

Here’s an example rendering. It took 1 hour and 27 minutes to render the video on my Lenovo laptop.

https://youtu.be/DbIZzut1koI

I had Bloom enabled, two light studio preset with an extra spot light. Depth of field node was set the the bin and F Stop 1.6.

Changes made to the default Bin picking layout prior rendering:

  • I removed the texture from the material used for the bin and added metallic with little roughness
  • Changed the safety panels to glassy and made the material a little less dark
  • Copied couple safety panels more to make the fence wider
  • Set "castmetal" style for orange material. (material edits done with csv)
 

 

eme, thanks for this update to Blender 2.80.

when recording animation with it I see that the works components appear allright, just then they get smaller in every next frame, until they dissapear.

 

 

 

Hi,

Could you kindly send a test layout. I found a bug that may cause this. Would love to test it with your layout.

 

sure, just a simple model with a crate and a barrel, attached

SaveWorksToTest2.vcmx (312 KB)

Hello,

I can’t choose the output file. Is it any wrong?

 

2019-08-29-100240.jpg

Hi Jimmy, I guess you need to select a file with a .png extension when the file browser opens, you can select an empty folder as a directory

Is it normal for the rendering to take very long. I have an animation that lasts about 2 minutes and 40secs, at 1080p resolution recorded at ~60fps. That amounts to ~9934 frames. Each frame takes about 3 seconds to render and that makes it about 8 hours and 30 minutes for the entire animation. Is that normal?

I have a pretty decent pc.

  • COU: i7-8700k
  • GPU: overclocked RTX 2080 Ti graphics card
  • RAM: 32gb 2133Mhz
  • SSD: M.2 970 Pro SSD
Blender Settings:

Blender Settings

CPU and GPU Usage (while rendering):

GPU Usage

CPU Usage:

CPU Usage

Wow awesome update, you actually fixed every single problem I had with the last version!

Great work!

Hy eme,

great work!

I get following error when I test it with different layouts:

Traceback (most recent call last):
File “file:///\Drive\HOME$\UserName\Documents\Visual Components\4.1\My Commands\Blenderer2_2019_08_19\Blenderer.py::”, line 501, in CallStill
File “file:///\Drive\HOME$\UserName\Documents\Visual Components\4.1\My Commands\Blenderer2_2019_08_19\Blenderer.py::”, line 351, in exportGeo
File “\Drive\HOME$\UserName\Documents\Visual Components\4.1\My Commands\Blenderer2_2019_08_19\export_from_vc.py”, line 110, in export_obj
out.write(face_string)
IOError: [Errno 0] Error

@joedavid:

That sound pretty okay. 3 secs per frame. You graphic card is quite a monster though. I’m not sure if you can tweak something on the blender side to get better performance from that card. But that’s a topic I can’t help you with. I tested with a single UR robot moving in the scene, I get a little less than 2s per frame withn fullHD resolution and 16 samples.

 

@Captain_Feature:

This looks nasty. It could be that the python is struggling to access the file for writing. Looks like your Documents folder is on a server drive. Could you try to move the addon to a local folder with write permission. You can install the addon from any folder by dragging and dropping the init file from the command folder to the VC 3d scene. Just make sure that the addon is not already added (i.e. remove it from the My Commands folder for this test)

@joedavid:

That redering performance sounds pretty okay. 3 secs per frame. Your graphic card is quite a monster though. I’m not sure if you can tweak something on the blender side to get a better performance from that card. But that’s a topic I can’t help you with (coz I don’t know). I tested with a single UR robot moving in the scene and I get a little less than 2s per frame with the fullHD resolution and 16 samples.

Just uploaded a new version of the addon (2019-09-19 :: 2.0.1). Please use the link provided in the original post.

I listed the major things this one improves in the bottom of the original post.

Fixes include the issue @Simulate1st reported earlier.

Hi vcnoob, I will try it. Thx.

Hi, I have been using Blenderer addon for some time without problems, but since yesterday, everytime I try to render a model that I imported from .step geometry, it takes unusually long time and then it freezes. In the past, I had no problem with rendering whole layouts with imported models and now i cannot render even one simple machine. The problem occurs when VC is exporting layout to .obj files that happens before opening Blender. When I tried exporting whole layout to .obj manually it took around 2 to 3 minutes, while using addon I waited 30 minutes and nothing happened. I am running VC version 4.1.2 and Blenderer addon 2.0.1 on Blender 2.80. I tried reinstalling VC, addon and Blender, but without succes. Anyone experiencing same issue?

Hi eme,

first of all: good job - really appreciate your work!

I recognized geometry is organized by material when exported to blender - do you have any workaround for obj. export where the feature tree remains like in VC ?

Regards,

Ilja

@horo

Is it also slow if you take a single robot arm from the ecat and try to render that?

Could you share the model you are struggling with?

The inbuilt obj export is a lot faster than the one used in blenderer.

@Ilja

Not really. The geometry is organized like that for the sake of performance. It would require a quite a bit of editing to keep the VC feature structure.

If you need to keep certain things separate, separate them into nodes in VC and they’ll be separate items in Blender.

Hi eme,

thank you for your reply. I tried rendering single robot and a whole layout from eCat and it was very fast.

Here is one of the models I tried to render.

Edit: my model failed upload test for unknown reason, so I uploaded it here: http://leteckaposta.cz/642572528