In this tutorial we’ll look at going from a 2D render (top) to a stereo cubemap image (bottom). Rhino file courtesy Spector Group.
In this tutorial we’ll look at going from a 2D render (top) to a stereo cubemap image (bottom). Rhino file courtesy Spector Group.

This is the third in a series of tutorials designed to help you use your favorite software and favorite rendering engine to output 360 panoramas. If Rhino is your software of choice and V-ray is your rendering engine of choice, this is the tutorial for you. Other 360 tutorials for other rendering engines will continue to be posted in the coming weeks.

Welcome! In this tutorial, we’re going to help you take a scene you’ve already set up for V-ray rendering in Rhino, make a few adjustments, and render out a cubemap image viewable in 360 and VR. We’ll finish by uploading the image to Vizor 360 and viewing it in a VR headset.
 
Check out the finished project in Vizor 360 to get an idea of how it looks.
Comparing a stereo cubemap with a mono equirectangular pano with high reflection.
Comparing a stereo cubemap with a mono equirectangular pano with high reflection.

Setting up V-ray for 360

First, create or select a named view in the scene. Make sure “Show Camera” is selected. The origin of this view will be serving as the center point of your 360 render.

Select your view and make the camera visible.
Select your view and make the camera visible.

Next, set your view to an average eye height if it is not already. Because of the sense of presence afforded by virtual reality, it can be jarring for someone to feel too short or too tall. But what height to pick? Well, anyone who is tall was once short, but anyone who is short has never been tall. 1.6m or 5’-3” is a good eye default if you plan on showing your panorama to many people.

If you plan to create multiple panoramas and align their view, pick a direction for all of your views to face in order to create consistency. View rotation won’t affect the content of the render, only how it will be laid out.

Pick a standard height and direction for all of your views.
Pick a standard height and direction for all of your views.

Next, open the V-ray for Rhino Asset Editor, choose “Settings”, and change the camera to “VR Cubemap”

If you want to render a stereo (VR) image instead of just a 360 image, make sure to click the Stereo toggle to turn it on. If you are unable to select this toggle, check to see if the Interactive Renderer toggle isn’t on in the “Renderer” section of the Asset Editor. 

Now, set the image height to “1536,” and confirm that this automatically changed the final width to “18432”, make sure the Output Layout is set to “Side by Side”, and pick a place to save the image.

Key settings in V-ray Asset Editor
Key settings in V-ray Asset Editor
 

That’s it! Now press Render, and you should see 12 square images being rendered in a row, the first 6 for the left eye, the second 6 for the right eye, each square at 1536x1536.

To share your image on the web or create a virtual tour, use the Vizor 360 editor, which will allow you to link scenes, annotate your images and more.

This article was brought to you by Vizor — the most accessible WebVR solution for all devices. Our VR tools are intuitive and easy-to-use, so you can create beautiful WebVR experiences to delight and engage your audience.

 

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