Is Photoworks the only rendering program that will work with Solidworks? Is there an independant add-in that we can install into Solidworks that will work well? Maybe one that is a little more user friendly than Photoworks? We are using Solidworks 2006. We would appreciate your response. Dave Malloy
Try using 2007 and PhotoWorks first. It is much much easier to use. Especially when you start using HDRI to light your scenes. 2007 has a large jump in ease of use to get a good rendering without much work.
Is there anything specific you are having trouble with?
comes with a half decent SolidWorks plugin, works for smaller projects but quite cumbersome for larger. Crashes a bit sometimes. The render is far far FAR superior to PhotoWorks but good quality renders take a lot of CPU hours (think around 30 hrs for a 1600x1200 image using real life materials). Lots of useable materials provided by the user community.
Mr Malloy, Reading between the lines in your message, and assuming that Photoworks wasn't exactly a walk in the park for you, as it isn't for many of us, maybe you might want to look on my web page and scroll to the very bottom of the "what's new" page, and there you will find a three piece model that I made in Solidworks, but rendered in Flamingo. Flamingo is not a standalone program, it is an add-in coded for Rhino, but for whatever reason, I am able to get pretty close to what I am, looking for a lot easier, even though 95% of the time, I stick with PW, if only in an effort to increase my learning curve a little more. When I do use Flamingo, it involves saving the file as an iges in Solidworks, and importing into Rhino. It is at this point that I have to disqualify myself, and say that I am not even close to being proficient at rendering, and you might want to ask some of the several very fine Photorealistic Rendering Gurus that we are Privaleged to have here on this forum. People like Rob Rodriguez, or John Layne, or Matt Lombard. I am sure that there is a solution for you with advice from either one of these gentlemen. I have even been told that Solidworks 2007 has made PW easier to use, so there might be some hope for us afterall. Good Luck,