Joren Kandel, owner of The Pixel Lab, has built up a reputation for creating high-quality products for Cinema 4D users. Over the last few years he's teamed up with a number of collaborators to produce themed collections of models and materials.
This latest pack is a little different in that it is aimed at making life easier for users of a specific render engine: in this case Octane. Although not a plugin in the truest sense of the word, its implementation can be treated as one. In essence, the pack consists of a number of lighting rigs, all pre-configured to be a one-click solution for popular 'looks'. Each 'studio' can be added to a scene, where you can hit render and get great results, making it simple for users of any level.
What's more, each studio has an Xpresso rig built in, allowing for efficient and intuitive adaptation of the light within the scene – from simple colour and intensity, to targeted positions of lights and effects such as falloff and volumetrics.
The pack ships with a set number of lighting rigs but with the promise of an additional rig for every month of the product's first year, so the $99 price tag will, finally, equate to 20 rigs – excellent value.
No matter what the cost, quality oozes from each rig, with even single-click renders looking fantastic. Take the time to tweak to suit your scene, be it still or render, and truly useful production-quality results can be had at a far lower overhead than manually setting things up.
Sometimes packs like this contain just one or two useful items and are instead full of features that have 'personality', which, despite looking good in the marketing material, have less actual use in a production pipeline. Fortunately this pack is chock full of truly useful rigs for a wide array of projects, specially with the easy Xpresso controls to adapt the defaults.
If you are an Octane and Cinema 4D user, then this pack is great value. It will help you get great render results with very little work, whether you're a novice or a veteran.
This article was originally published in issue 232 of 3D World.