Table of Contents

This page offers information about the Environment tab in Chaos Vantage.


Overview


The Environment tab offers properties for the environment setup.

You can use the right mouse button click to reset the parameters numeric values to defaults.



Scene sub-state


Scene sub-state – A dropdown list of all scene environment sub-states.

Create (Vantage_CCtab_CreateSubState.png) – Creates a new scene environment sub-state.

Update (Vantage_CCtab_UpdateSubState.png) – Updates a scene environment sub-state.

Delete (Vantage_CCtab_DeleteSubState.png) – Deletes a scene environment sub-state. Double-click to delete.

Note that the default scene sub-state cannot be updated or deleted.


EnvironmentTab_SceneSubstate.png



Sky


Environment mode – Specifies the mode which will be used for scene lighting:

Texture – Enables the use of an environment texture for lighting.

Solid Color – Enables the use of a solid color for lighting.

Physical Sky – Enables the use of a sky texture for lighting. Available only when the imported .vrscene has VRaySky texture.


Texture Mode parameters:

Load environment – Loads an image for Environment.

Flip horizontally – Flips the environment image horizontally.

Clamp to 1 – Clamps the colors of the Environment texture to a value of 1.

Rotation – Specifies a rotation angle in degrees for the Environment texture.

Intensity – Specifies the intensity of the Environment lighting.


EnvironmentTab_Environment_Texture.png

Texture mode




Solid Color Mode parameters:

Color – Specifies the Environment color.

Intensity – Specifies the intensity of the Environment lighting.


EnvironmentTab_Environment_SolidColor.png

Solid color mode




Physical Sky Mode parameters:

Intensity – Specifies the intensity of the Environment lighting.

Sky model – Specifies the use of location coordinates, date and time of day to control the sun position.

Preetham et al. – The sky procedural texture is generated based on the Preetham et al. model.
CIE Clear – The sky procedural texture is generated based on the CIE method for a clear sky.
CIE Overcast – The sky procedural texture is generated based on the CIE method for a cloudy sky.
Hosek et al. – The sky procedural texture is generated based on the Hosek et al. model.
PRG Clear Sky – The sky procedural texture is generated based on the PRG Clear Sky model which has enhanced sunrise and sunset sky.

Ground albedo – Sets the color of the ground.

Indirect hor illum – Specifies the intensity (in lx) of the illumination on horizontal surfaces coming from the sky. This parameter is enabled when one of the CIE Sky Models(CIE Clear, CIE Overcast) are selected.

Blend angle – Specifies the angle in degrees where blending will occur between the horizon line and sky. Values close to 0.0 produce a sharper horizon line, while larger values produce a softer horizon line.

Horizon offset – Allows you to manually lower the horizon line.

Turbidity – Determines the amount of dust in the air, which in turn affects the color of the sun and sky. Smaller values produce a clear, blue sky and sun similar to what is seen in rural areas, while larger values make the sun and sky more yellow and orange.

Ozone – Affects the color of the sun light. Available in the range between 0.0 and 1.0. Smaller values make the sunlight more yellow, while larger values make it bluer.


EnvironmentTab_Environment_PhysicalSky.png

Physical sky mode 



Sun


The Sun settings are grouped into basic and advanced settings tabs.

Vantage_Sun_BasicIcon.png – Basic settings tab.

Vantage_Sun_AdvancnedIcon.png – Advanced settings tab.

Basic settings


Enabled – Turns on and off the sun light.

Color – Changes the color of the sun and depends on the Color mode parameter.

Intensity – Specifies the intensity of the sun and can be used to reduce the default brightness. 

Sun size mult. – Controls the visible size of the sun disc. This value can be used to control shadow softness cast from objects. Lower values produce sharp shadows, while large values produce softer shadows. 

Color mode – Affects the way the color in the Color parameter affects the color of the sun.

Filter – Shifts the hue of the sun towards the color specified in the Color parameter. 
Direct – Sets the color of the sun to match the color in the Color parameter. In this case, the intensity of the light does not depend on the V-Ray Suns position in the sky and is controlled through the Intensity parameter. 
Override – Sets the color of the sun to match the color in the Color parameter but the intensity of the light still depends on the sun's position in the sky.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Sun_main.png



Sun position mode – Specifies the control mode for the sun's position in the sky.

Manual – Specifies a manual control of the sun position using the Rotate(Vantage_TopToobar_Rotate.png) transform tool.
Altitude/Azimuth – Specifies the use of Altitude and Azimuth values to control the sun's position.
Geolocation – Specifies the use of location coordinates, date and time of day to control the sun position.
Animated Geolocation – Specifies the use of location coordinates, date and time of day to control the sun position that can be animated in the Sun track in the animation editor.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Sun_manual.png

Manual mode




Altitude/Azimuth Mode parameters:

Altitude – Sets the altitude position (in degrees) of the sun in the sky.
Azimuth – Sets the azimuth position (in degrees) of the sun in the sky.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Sun_altitude.png

Altitude/Azimuth mode




Geolocation Mode parameters:

North offset – Sets the altitude position (in degrees) of the sun in the sky.
Geo coordinatesDefines the latitude and positions of the scene over the Earth globe.
Day / Month / Year – Specifies the day/month/year for which to compute the sun position.
Hours / Minutes – Specifies the hours/minutes for which to compute the sun position.
Time zone – Specifies the current time zone of the scene. The Time Zone is not set automatically based on Latitude/Longitude values.
Daylight saving time – When enabled, compensates for Daylight Saving Time(DST).


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Sun_geolocation.png

Geolocation mode




Animated Geolocation Mode parameters:

Set start keyframe – Sets the current Day / Month / Year and Hours / Minutes values at the start of the sun animation track.
Set end keyframe
– Sets the current Day / Month / Year and Hours / Minutes values at the end of the sun animation track.
North offset
– Sets the altitude position (in degrees) of the sun in the sky.
Geo coordinates – Defines the latitude and longitude positions of the scene over the Earth globe.
Day / Month / Year – Specifies the day/month/year for which to compute the sun position.
Hours / Minutes – Specifies the hours/minutes for which to compute the sun position.
Time zone – Specifies the current time zone of the scene. The Time Zone is not set automatically based on Latitude/Longitude values.
Daylight Saving Time – When enabled, compensates for Daylight Saving Time(DST).

Note that only Day / Month / Year and Hours / Minutes can be animated in the Sun animation track.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Sun_animatedGeolocation.png

Animated Geolocation mode


Advanced settings


Shadows – When enabled (the default), the light casts shadows. Turn this option off to disable shadow casting for the light. The value moves the shadow toward or away from the shadow-casting object(s). Higher values move the shadow toward the object(s), while lower values move it away. If this value is too extreme, shadows can "leak" through places they shouldn't or "detach" from an object. Other effects from extreme values include Moire patterns, out-of-place dark areas on surfaces, and shadows not appearing at all in the rendering.

Affect diffuse – Determines whether the light affects the diffuse portion of the materials. The value controls the light's contribution to the diffuse portion of the materials.

Affect specular – Determines whether the light affects the specular portion of the materials. The value controls the light's contribution to specular reflections.


Vantage_Sun_Advanced.png

Clouds


Enable clouds – Enables the cloud system.

Ground  shadows – When enabled, casts shadows from the clouds.

Density – Specifies the density of the cumulus and stratus types of clouds. A value of 100% fills up the sky with clouds.

Variety – Specifies the variety of the cumulus and stratus types of clouds.

Cirrus amount – Specifies the amount of cirrus clouds in the sky. The maximum value of 1 fills the sky with cirrus clouds. When set to 0, the cirrus clouds are completely gone.

Number of contrails – Specifies the number of airplane contrails visible in the sky.

Offset X – Moves the cloud system on the X axis.

Offset Y – Moves the cloud system on the Y axis.

Phase X – Specifies the phase by X axis, can be used to fine-tweak the cumulus and stratus clouds appearance. The appearance of the clouds loops at 0, 100, 200, etc.

Phase Y – Specifies the phase by Y axis, can be used to fine-tweak the cumulus and stratus clouds appearance. The appearance of the clouds loops at 0, 100, 200, etc.

Start height – Specifies the clouds staring height position.

Thickness – Specifies the height of the cloud layer. Lower values make the cumulus and stratus types of clouds thin and sheer/lucent, while higher values make them full and heavy.

Wind direction angle – Specifies the direction from which the wind originates.

Wind intensity – Specifies the wind strength.

The Cloud settings are available only when the imported .vrscene has VRaySky texture.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Cloud.png



Fog


Enable fog – Enables aerial perspective fog to be applied in the scene.

Fog visibility range – Specifies the distance in km at which the fog has absorbed 90% of the light coming from objects behind it. Lower values make the fog appear denser, while larger values reduce the effect.
Fog height – Specifies the height of the fog layer in meters.
Fog start distance – Specifies the distance from the camera at which the fog starts.
Fog max opacity – Specifies the maximum opacity of the fog. A value of 1 means the fog is completely opaque, while 0 means the fog is invisible.
Fog color – Specifies the color of the fog layer.


EnvironmentTab_Fog.png




Enable fog 2 – Enables a second aerial perspective fog to be applied in the scene.

Fog visibility range (2) – Specifies the distance in km at which the second fog has absorbed 90% of the light coming from objects behind it. Lower values make the fog appear denser, while larger values reduce the effect.
Fog height (2) – Specifies the height of the second fog layer in meters.
Fog start distance (2) – Specifies the distance from the camera at which the second fog starts.
Fog max opacity (2) – Specifies the maximum opacity of the second fog. A value of 1 means the fog is completely opaque, while 0 means the fog is invisible.
Fog color (2) – Specifies the color of the second fog layer.


EnvironmentTab_Fog2.png




Enable scattering fog – Enables scattering volumetric fog.

Fog color – Specifies the color of the fog when it is illuminate by light sources.

Fog distance – Specifies the fog density. Larger values make the fog more transparent, while smaller values make it denser.

Fog transparency – Specifies the color of the volumetric shadows and the tint for the objects seen through the fog. Brighter colors make the fog more transparent, while darker colors make it denser at a distance given by the Fog distance parameter. 

Fog emission – Specifies the fog emission (self-illumination). You can use this parameter to substitute the ambient illumination inside the fog, instead of using GI.

Fog heightSpecifies the height of the fog in meters.

Fog start – Specifies the distance from the camera at which the scattering fog starts.

Fog end – Specifies the distance from the camera at which the scattering fog ends.

Fog light boost – Specifies a multiplier for lights that affect the scattering fog.

Fog max opacity – Specifies the maximum opacity of the scattering fog while keeping the "light shaft" effect. A value of 1 means the fog is completely opaque, while 0 means the fog is invisible.

Affect secondary rays – Enables or disables the tracing of secondary rays through the volumetric.

Scatter GI – When enabled, the fog also scatters global illumination. Note that this can be quite slow. In many cases, global illumination within the fog can be substituted with a simple emission term.

Scatter only infinite direct lights – When enabled, the scattering fog is affected only by directional and sun lights.

Texture mode – Specifies a texture mode to control the scattering fog's density. Available options are Off, Built-in smoke density, and From V-Ray scene.


EnvironmentTab_ScatterFog.png




Built-in Smoke Density Mode parameters:

Smoke size – Specifies the size of the smoke "clusters" in meters.

Smoke num iterations – Specifies how many times the fractal function is applied. The higher the value, the more detail within the smoke, but the longer the calculation time.

Smoke exponent – Specifies the sharpness of the smoke. Higher values make the smoke sharper and more wispy.

Ground fog – When enabled, adds an additional scattering fog.

Ground fog distance – Specifies the ground fog density. Larger values make the fog more transparent, while smaller values make it denser and more opaque.

Ground fog height – Specifies the height of the ground fog in meters.

Ground fog transition – Specifies the transition falloff height of the ground fog in meters.

Raymarch step size – Specifies the size of one step through the volume. Smaller steps produce more accurate results but are slower to render. In general, dense volumes require smaller step sizes than more transparent volumes. In practice, step sizes that are two to three times smaller than the Fog distance parameter work well.

Raymarch cutoff threshold – Specifies the number of texture samples for each step through the volume. This allows to sample textures more accurately than the volumetric lighting. It is useful in cases where the textures vary much faster than the lighting itself (e.g. for detailed fractal textures).

Raymarch max steps – Specifies the maximum number of steps through the volume.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_BuiltInMode.png

Built-in smoke density mode




From V-Ray Scene Mode parameters:

Ground fog – When enabled, adds an additional scattering fog.

Ground fog distance – Specifies the ground fog density. Larger values make the fog more transparent, while smaller values make it denser and more opaque.

Ground fog height – Specifies the height of the ground fog in meters.

Ground fog transition – Specifies the transition falloff height of the ground fog in meters.

Raymarch step size – Specifies the size of one step through the volume. Smaller steps produce more accurate results but are slower to render. In general, dense volumes require smaller step sizes than more transparent volumes. In practice, step sizes that are two to three times smaller than the Fog distance parameter work well.

Raymarch cutoff threshold – Specifies the number of texture samples for each step through the volume. This allows to sample textures more accurately than the volumetric lighting. It is useful in cases where the textures vary much faster than the lighting itself (e.g. for detailed fractal textures).

Raymarch max steps – Specifies the maximum number of steps through the volume.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_FromVRaySceneMode.png

From V-Ray scene mode



Ambient settings


Ambient light color – Specifies a color for the ambient light.

Ambient light intensity – Specifies a multiplier for the ambient light intensity.

Ambient occlusion – Enables the rendering of global ambient shadows.

Occluded color – Specifies the color to be returned for occluded areas.

Unoccluded color – Specifies the color to be returned for unoccluded areas.

Radius – Determines the amount of area (in scene units) where ambient shadows are produced.

Distribution – Forces the rays to gather closer to the surface normal. The effect is that the shadow area is being narrowed closer to the contact edges.

Invert – When enabled, swaps the colors for the occluded and unoccluded areas.

Double sided – Enables tracing of rays for both the front and back face of a surface.


EnvironmentTab_AmbientOcclusion.png



Background


Mode – Specifies the mode which will be used for the background. Note that the Background texture is not used for lighting and glossy reflections.

Same as environment – Uses the specified Environment source.

Solid color – Uses a solid color for the background.

Image – Uses an image as a background.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Background_SameAsEnv.png

Same as environment mode




Solid Color Mode parameters:

Color – Specifies a color as a background.

Intensity – Specifies the intensity for the background image/color.

Use for refraction/mirror reflection – When enabled, the background override is used for both refraction and perfect (glossiness=1) reflection rays.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Background_SolidColor.png

Solid color mode




Image Mode parameters:

Color – Specifies a color as a background when Background Image is empty.

Load background – Specifies an image to use as a background.

Mapping – Specifies the mapping method for the image - spherical or screen.

Rotation – Specifies a rotation angle in degrees for the background image. 

Intensity – Specifies the intensity for the background image/color.

Use for refraction/mirror reflection – When enabled, the background override is used for both refraction and perfect (glossiness=1) reflection rays.


Vantage_EnvironmentTab_Background_Image.png

Image mode