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This page provides information about the ZDepth Render Element in V-Ray for Cinema 4D.


The Z-Depth Render Element is a grayscale image that renders each pixel based on its distance from the camera in the view. It provides information about each object's distance from the camera in the current view. Each pixel representing the object is evaluated for distance individually; different pixels for the same object can have different grayscale values. You can adjust this render channel so that objects (or portions of objects) closest to the camera appear black, while those furthest away appear white or vice versa.

The most common usage of the Z-Depth Render Element is as a control for depth of field in the composite. Depth of field can be challenging to do correctly, requiring many tweaks and re-renders; using the Z-Depth Render Element in a composite is usually much faster and allows easier and faster adjustment than trying to get it exactly right within the render.

UI Path: ||V-Ray|| > Render Elements > ZDepth

How to add a render element to a scene


Enable Deep OutputSpecifies whether to include this render element in deep images.

Depth from CameraSpecifies whether to use camera clip boundaries as the minimum and maximum Z-Depth distance, even if camera clipping is disabled. The camera clipping boundaries can be found in the Details tab of each camera object. Enabling this option disables the Depth Black and Depth White parameters.

Depth Black –  Objects up to this distance from the camera render black.

Depth WhiteObjects further than this distance from the camera render white.

Depth ClampClamps the Z-Depth colors to a linear 0-1 range.

Filtering – Applies an image filter to this channel.

Depth InvertInverts the colors of the Z-Depth render element. Objects closest to the camera render white, while those furthest away are black.

Force Infinity Black – When enabled, overrides the infinity color, turning it black. Everything beyond the Depth White amount (if not using Depth from Camera) is the infinity color.

Dont Filter Env – When enabled, only outlines of overlaying objects are filtered. When Filtering is enabled, and Dont Filter Env is enabled, pixels bordering scene objects and the environment remain unfiltered, while pixels bordering different objects are still filtered.

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