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Warning

The Sky shader is considered deprecated. You should use the visibility options in the Skydome light instead.


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This scene uses a background Sky shader with a constant color which is sufficient to 'light' the scene with GI Diffuse rays

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Info

Note that Hardware Texturing in Maya's viewport will only work when using a Maya file texture with the Ai Sky shader. Using an Ai Image, for example, will return black in the viewport.

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Workflow

The following information demonstrates how to render a scene using the Ai Sky shader with an HDR map.

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Warning

This section is mostly obsolete, you should be using the Skydome light instead.

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Using a very high contrast HDR image for lighting a scene can produce noise which can be hard to get rid of simply by increasing the Camera or Hemi/Glossy samples. An HDR image contains a tiny sun disc whose pixel values are in the hundreds of thousands or even millions, is going to need a lot of samples for Arnold's brute-force hemispherical sampling to find. On the other hand, an HDRI of a thick overcast day with no sun at sight is very easy to sample.

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Depending on the dynamic range of the HDRI you may need to blur more or less to achieve optimal results. Also, how blurry the map used for glossy rays should depend on the material; for very sharp materials (almost mirror-like) you don't need as much blurring, but if your glossy reflections are very soft you should use a bigger blur.

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Info

A ramp texture that is set to the U direction will render incorrectly when connected to the Ai Sky. This can be corrected by scaling the Ai Sky -1 in Z and setting Facing to back.

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