ArchViz in UE4 vs ArchiCAD/ChiefArchitect/20-20

For all of you UE4 ArchViz guys,

When it comes to showing an interior design project to clients, or a home renovation idea to clients, would you say it’s better to use UE4 as opposed to Chief Architect or 20-20 or any other similar software? and why?

I’d love to hear some thoughts you guys have on this subject.

Looking up that software, some of those are not for interactive presentation—ArchiCAD is for design, as is 20-20, Chief Architect can do some interactive stuff but UE4 can give better looking results. UE4 is more as an alternative to creating renders in Vray or Mental Ray, where you have to spend hours rendering and can’t do animations most of the time because it takes too long. You can do visualizations with UE4 very quickly with a pretty high quality. If you use the default static lighting system it can then be used to create animations very easily. If you have a powerful enough computer you can use VXGI which gives real-time global illumination without having to spend hours rendering lighting or messing with lightmap UV’s.

If you don’t need a real-time playable walkthrough or a video : Vray, Corona, Octane render, maxwell, etc. are good offline renderers. (much better for stills)

If you want to make movies for cheap (talking about render farm renting costs) : unreal engine 4 is the way to go imo, unless your client is wiling to pay more $ for the extra realism offline renderer can offer!

If you want to make a playable walkthrough/virtual reality : unreal engine 4 all the way!

There are other more simple solutions like Lumion3d but it won’t be as beautiful as Ue4 and it’s more expensive.

hey darth where is this VXGI thing? how can i start using it?

Check out this thread:

Basically, it’s available by Nvidia as a branch of UE4, you download the Nvidia VXGI UE4branch source and compile it and then you’ll have a version of UE4 that has VXGI integrated. Currently it’s using UE4 4.6.1, but they are working on getting it updated to 4.7.4 It just takes some time since they have to make sure that it works with the new engine changes.

VXGI is a promising tech, but have in mind it won’t give you the same quality you can get with UE4’s lightmass (at least not without heavy tweaking). It has one bounce only and many bugs (as you’ll notice if you read that thread darthviper107 just linked there). NVIDIA is still working on improving it, I think it’s something to be looking at as a viable option for archviz in 6+ months.

I’ve made some comparisons between VXGI and lightmass for archviz here if you wan’t to get an idea:

Although note as far as your comparison goes you can turn up the quality (like 32 or above) and get better results if you’re not too concerned about getting 30fps, which even if it’s 1fps is much faster than rendering lightmass or using Vray, if you’re doing still renders or even animations since you can use Matinee to setup rendering and it’ll take its time to render each frame to get the desired framerate.