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5. mental ray® and shaders  > 5.1 Introduction

5.1 Introduction

In 3ds Max you have been using maps in your materials since the very beginning. This hasn’t changed with the use of mental ray® rendering; you can still use maps to generate patterns inside materials. Maps may be color patterns, bump patterns, or opacity patterns, to name a few examples. mental ray rendering also uses maps in materials but has additional components called shaders.

Shader is another mental ray term that can be a bit confusing, so let’s start by clarifying what a shader is. In 3ds Max, a shader is a mental ray component or building block that receives some sort of input and produces some sort of output that helps mental ray determine how a particular pixel will look. mental ray-specific shaders can be identified in the Material/Map Browser by the yellow parallelogram beside the name (see Figure 5.1). Scanline and mental ray-compatible maps are identified by a green or red parallelogram.


  

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