IRender nXt for AccuRender Users

AccuRender rendering of a SketchUp 3D model showing Ray Trace features, such as lighting, reflection and soft shadows.

Many AccuRender for AutoCAD clients have started using Google SketchUp as well as AutoCAD and have shown interest in an AccuRender renderer for SketchUp.

Robert McNeel & Associates and Render Plus have worked together to adapt the AccuRender engine as integrated renderer for SketchUp. This new product, IRender nXt , is integrated into SketchUp. Both SketchUp and AccuRender materials are recognized and all rendering settings are saved with the SketchUp model. This is much easier than having to export your SketchUp models to AutoCAD before rendering them.


IRender nXt Special pricing

We are offering a special $100.00 discount for AccuRender licensees who purchase IRender nXt for SketchUp. Visit: Special AccuRender user pricing

This can be applied to IRender nXt, or to the Render nXt Combo Pack , which include IRender nXt, RPS 3D PDF , and RpTools

This discount is valid through August 31, 2007.

Features in IRender nXt Only

IRender nXt allows additional reflection settings - such as allowing you to set both the reflection and sharpness or blurriness of the reflection.

Mirror and glossy wood surface - 80% reflective.

Animation or your IRender nXt image is created by rendering scenes, moving the camera, and rendering the next frame.

Animation movie.

Arroway Textures is a manufacturer of high-res textures, which are used in many areas of digital visualization, e.g. architecture, design and art.

Arroway has made about 100 low-res versions of their textures available to IRender nXt users.

Room with Arroway Textures on walls and floor.

Auto Reflection makes materials with words like metal or plastic in them reflective.

Bathroom with reflective materials.

Batch Rendering is a rendering mode which exports the model to a file, and then renders the file in a separate process.

It has 3 main uses and benefits.

  1. Large Models - Models which are too large to render directly from SketchUp can be rendered in batch mode.
  2. Animation - Batch mode is used for animation, because animations need to load and reload the model when there are layer changes, and because animations typically take a long time to render.
  3. Network Rendering - The entire folder containing the rendering information and files can be accessed across a network, or copied to a thumb drive or another machine and used to render the model.
Batch Rendering setup dialog.

produces focused light and shadow effects from light passing through a transparent object.

Caustic Refraction through glass.

Clay Rendering is used to show the details of your model without adding colors or textures. This feature renders the SketchUp model in black and white.

Clay Rendering.

Create PDF is a feature to create an interactive 3D PDF Presentation using your model and your Rendered Image.

Both the 3D Model and the Rendered Image are displayed on the first page of the PDF file, with a set of buttons for the user to choose between the two.

How to use it

  1. Render your model, and use the Save Image icon on the toolbar to load the Save Image Wizard. Revit save image button.png
  2. Select Create PDF from the bottom of the Wizard.
  3. Enter the PDF settings on the next dialog.
Create 3D PDF

a special transparent face placed over an exterior opening or window which causes exterior light to be processed better.

The left half image on the left has a normal (non-Daylight Portal) opening. It took hundreds of passes to resolve properly. The right half has openings marked as Daylight Portals. The lighting looked this good after just a few passes.

Daylight effect through windows.

Depth of Field and Focal Distance settings create renderings with areas in sharp focus and areas out of focus.

Depth Blur can also be defined as a Post-Processing technique in the nXt Image Editor .

Depth of Field set to 1.0, Focal Distance 100'

Ground Cover - define Ground Cover for use on the ground or on topiary bushes.

Ground Cover definition wizard

Edge Highlighting displays the edges of faces while rendering . This is especially valuable with scenes which contain cabinets or furniture where edge highlighting is necessary to bring out the detail of the components.

In IRender nXt edge highlighting is turned on in the Advanced Settings dialog.

Videos and Tutorials

Cabinet with edges rendered.

An additional license for your laptop is included with IRender nXt at no additional charge.

Get a free Laptop Seat with IRender nXt.

Image Filters can be used to sharpen your rendered image or apply other standard filters.

Sharpen Filter

Lighting Channels is an important new feature of IRender nXt which lets you quickly adjust light sources. By assigning channels to sun, sky, and groups of lights, you can quickly adjust the intensity of each channel with a slidebar and immediately see the effect on the final rendering.

You can quickly adjust the intensity of each channel with a slide bar and immediately see the effect on the final rendering. This will saves time both in determining the relative intensities to use for light sources and in fine tuning the final image before publication.

In Version 3.5, Lighting Channels are integrated into the Batch Renderer, as well as used separately with the nXt Image Editor.

Videos and Tutorials

Adjust Lighting Channels from Batch Renderer.

Material Channels are used to adjust the color or luminance of pixels rendered from a material after rendering.

Videos and Tutorials


Applies reflection and transparency directly to SketchUp materials. Changes are made easily with a slider bar.

IRender nXt sets multiple settings for a single material - such a setting both transparency and index of refraction for glass materials.

Set reflection and other material settings

The nXt Image Editor is used for Post-Processing images after the rendering has been completed.

Real Time Haze adjustment in nXt Image Editor

There are more than 5,000 materials in the nXt Material library.

You can select any material from the library and place it on a SketchUp face to create a similar SketchUp material.

In many cases the SketchUp material is an approximation of the full fractal material which will be created when you render the model.

Download the Libraries and install them on your computer.

Solid wood material sculpted surface

About 30 new RpTreeMaker plants.

The are in addition to the more than 500 plants in the old AR3/AR4 plants which also work with IRender nXt.

These are 'fractal' plants - meaning that detail is relative to the resolution of your image. Each plant is generated differently which automatically creates a realistic effect when using multiple instances of the same plant.

Create SketchUp components to represent IRender nXt plants. These are then automatically rendered as 'fractal' plants.

These plants are also available from the 3D Warehouse: IRender Plants

Juniper plant from plant library

set special lighting, transparency and rendering properties of groups, components and faces.

Object Properties can be used to make any face or object act as a light source, or to set other special properties.

Object Properties Settings dialog

nXt Path Tracer is a new rendering engine for IRender nXt.

You can enable the Path Tracer rendering engine on the Render Setup Tab

  • Comparison to nXt Packet Mode

nXt Packet Mode processes packets of rays, while nXt Path Tracer processes individual light paths.

Because of some shortcuts, such as Daylight Portals, and other aspects of the rendering process, nXt Packet Mode create a usable image in fewer passes. nXt Path Tracer often requires more passes before the image gets smooth.

Path Tracer image after 1,500 passes.

IRender nXt includes several post processing features to make changes to your rendered image without the need of using other third party software.

These are all combined into the Post Processing Wizard.

See: Post Processing

Lighting Channels in Post Processing Wizard

You can use a, (non panoramic), HDRi image as a background.

Image Adjustments

If you use a Planar HDRi background with the Path Tracer , you can adjust its brightness as an additional lighting channel after rendering. (This is not working with the standard renderer yet)

Converting standard image to HDRi.

can be used to give your material (with or without textures) a different appearance.

Pyramid and Sandpaper bump maps

Post Processing to set haze and fog effects.

These effects can be modified after the rendering is completed.

Haze added to lighthouse scene

Set options and edit materials directly from the rendering window.

Double click on a material in the rendered image to edit the material.

Reload modified materials back into SketchUp model.

Batch Rendering Material Editor

Place RPC components in your SketchUp model which automatically render as RPC objects.

RPC people rendered with IRender nXt

You can use SketchUp Section Planes to cut sections through your IRender nXt model.

Section Plane cutout rendering. Front wall is sectioned out, but still used for lighting, shadows and reflections

Volumetric Fog is a feature in IRender nXt incorporate the effects of light reflecting from or being blocked by fog or haze.

How to use it

  1. Download the latest version of IRender nXt
  2. Use Fog Setup Tab to setup parameters
  3. See: Volumetric Fog for examples and advice on settings.
Light in a hazy room

Watermarks - are used to place logos, foregrounds images, or texture maps in front of your rendering.

Foreground image placed as a Watermark

can be used to give your material (with or without textures) a look and feel which emulates water.

A "rubble" bump map used to emulate water

SketchUp environment

SketchUp environmental settings are automatically used to define the AccuRender environment.

  • Sun intensity, time and date
  • Sky color
  • Ground plane color and transparency
  • Background color
  • Fog settings

Any of the settings may be augmented or overridden with the AccuRender envoronment settings - such as using a background image, or special ground plane materials.


  • Access the AccuRender engine directly from SketchUp. No need to export the model to AutoCAD before rendering the model.
  • You can use the same plant and material libraries, including your your custom objects, with both IRender nXt.
  • Rendering settings are set from SketchUp and saved in your SketchUp model.
  • Special IRender nXt price for AccuRender for AutoCAD users.

Image Gallery

See: Image Gallery for samples of user renderings with IRender.

See also

Purchase information