Enscape and NVIDIA RTX: Reaching New Heights Together
Visualization is an indispensable part of communicating a design: how better to convey to your client the vision of a project than to show it to them before it is built? To aid in this, architects and designers have embraced modern technology at unprecedented rates, to allow more time for creativity and innovation. With modern architecture’s ever-growing, complex workflows, accuracy is key. The designer requires an accurate representation of their concept, and the client wants to see a clear vision of what they are investing in.
Since its inception, Enscape has been known for its precision and simplicity, delivering offline-rendered image quality at real-time speeds. With its forthcoming version 2.6, Enscape will become one of the first rendering engines for architects to support NVIDIA’s revolutionary RTX technology, which sets the new standard for real-time rendering.
Laying the Groundwork
The NOBU Project by Turner Fleischer Architects and Teeple Architects Inc.
In contrast to many game engines, we here at Enscape already realized the value of showcasing ray traced lighting and reflection calculations and have done so in our real-time engine. Everything we see in the real world is a result of light interacting with the objects in our view. Ray tracing techniques emulate this effect: an algorithm simulates light rays, tracing them from the imaginary eye, or camera, to the light source. As this is fundamentally similar to how light behaves in real life, it can achieve amazingly realistic results.
It is, however, computationally taxing to run so many calculations in real-time. Tracing rays for every frame is resource intensive and has required a great deal of optimization work in other areas. To achieve real-time framerates, it was necessary to partially scale back reflection quality during camera movement and the amount of geometry visible in reflections.
A Winning Combination
Crisp reflections in this towering Turner Fleischer project
NVIDIA RTX allows Enscape to build on our current foundation, making it possible to ray trace more geometry in a higher resolution, at exactly the same frame rate. RTX’s hardware acceleration provides us the ability to significantly speed up our lighting and reflection calculations. The faster Enscape can calculate, the more accurate the reflections and indirect lighting will be. The way you use Enscape will not change; the results you get, however, have the possibility of being more realistic, with no extra effort on your part.
A Winning Combination
The acclaimed firm has been innovating since 1974.
Fully realistic reflections have traditionally been an inherently difficult topic for real-time renderers. For developers, this has been complicated by the fact that glass is a highly important and often used design element; designers expect sharp and correct reflections. Now, RTX gives us the power we need to offer both the performance Enscape is known for and do so with highly realistic reflections.
This has come in handy for Toronto-based firm Turner Fleischer Architects. The renowned firm has always chased cutting-edge technology to convey their designs. As Turner Fleischer Principal Steve Nonis says: “Enscape has radically revolutionized the workflow and client offerings at our studio. The increased speed and enhanced quality of our renderings facilitates a totally new way for us to design, in realtime, with immediate feedback. Design is always an iterative process, but Enscape has made it a dynamic one at Turner Fleischer: the tools we use can now keep-up with our creativity, allowing quick decision making and letting our clients instantly see the impact of their choices.”
Trying out the new NVIDIA RTX technology with Enscape was a no-brainer. “With the addition of RTX to this mix, we can now add to the accuracy, quality and depth our visualizations, with accurate reflections, particularly on glass surfaces, bring static images to life,” says Nonis.
Enscape and NVIDIA at SIGGRAPH 2019
Want to experience the stunning RTX effect for yourself? Stop by the NVIDIA booth #1313 at SIGGRAPH 2019 from July 28 to August 1. Enscape will be shown running on an NVIDIA RTX Studio laptop. Featuring NVIDIA GeForce and Quadro RTX GPUs, RTX Studio laptops are the first to support real-time ray tracing and advanced AI capabilities. You’ll be able to test Enscape projects rendered with RTX live in person!