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rendering techniques

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I'm trying to learn about 3d rendering techniques. Painter's algorithm is relatively simple and Z-buffer is faster than it, but are there any cases where painter's algorithm would be faster? I thought painter's algorithm might be faster in some cases because you would render based on a face's depth rather than depending on each pixel (which is what Z-buffer does) Would painter's algorithm be faster at rendering a scene than Z-buffer if 3d faces don't intersect? (Z-buffer resolves this issue, but what if this issue is avoided...) What other rendering techniques are out there other than these 2?

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Hi

By reading your post, I get the feeling that you aren't very updated on the subject... I would recomend that you get a serious reference on it (Real-Time Rendering is excellent).

Also, Michael Abrash' Graphics Programming Black Book is quite old (*very* old , only discusses software rendering, but is free and *very* interesting) and on the last chapters he discusses several different algorithms that were considered to be used in the Quake engine which you may find interesting

[Edited by - wolverine on January 28, 2008 1:30:00 PM]

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Checking against the Z-buffer and discarding a pixel is really fast. Executing a pixel shader and writing to the framebuffer is really slow (relatively speaking). The painter's algorithm is designed to render pixels in back-to-front order, which is exactly what you want to avoid. However, reversing the painter's algorithm so that you get a front-to-back render order would be ideal as long as you don't eat up too much processing time doing the sort. Some data structures are better suited toward doing this than others.

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Thanks wolverine awesome links. Lots of info ^_^ Yeah I really don't know much on the subject. I just know about the said techniques, and S-buffer, although it's been a while since I read about that.

I'm wondering what the best technique would be to use in rendering a large amount of objects. I read about the reverse painter algorithm still thinking about when that would be the fastest. Basically I'm sort of "benchmarking" different techniques, although more exactly I'm trying to learn what the strong points/weak points are for each of them.

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