The field of product design is becoming increasingly digital and collaborative. In the past, designers were forced to sketch out their ideas on paper or use static computer-aided design software. In the last few years, digital product design tools have become quite mature and are generated with more accuracy than ever.
These tools provide a great medium for creating prototypes, mockups, and designs for 3D printable objects. But you can only go so far with these technologies. To get to a point where your products are polished enough that other people will want to buy them, you need to invest time into hand-rendering your final product to make it look as enticing as possible.
This is where rendering software comes in handy — by providing designers with several different ways to bring their product designs from the virtual world onto the computer screen, making it possible for anyone with the right skill set to create photorealistic images of their product.
Designers can collaborate with virtual 3D models and make changes almost instantly using dynamic software like Solidworks or Autodesk Suite. Unsurprisingly, the growth of these new technologies has also made it easier for product designers to implement new features in their designs.
If you’re a product designer looking for ways to streamline your workflow and create better products faster, consider investing in the best product design software for rendering in 2022. This software will not only help you come up with innovative new concepts but also shorten your development time and get to market quicker than ever before.
This article takes a look at some of the best product design software with rendering capabilities in 2022 and what they offer designers to optimise their workflow.
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What is Rendering in Product Design?
Today, we have a technique known as “product rendering,” which replaces the need for objects to be expertly photographed using a high-end camera in regulated lighting. Simply put, product rendering is the process of using rendering technologies to produce photorealistic photographs of a single product from many perspectives for use in marketing and advertising.
Product rendering, produced using visualisation software, has a wide range of applications and allows marketers to showcase concepts before they are actually developed.
The ability to create prototypes and conduct photo shoots more quickly and affordably is much valued by all manufacturers and designers. More importantly, it fuels the fierce competition between manufacturers since photorealistic representations allow any company to expand quickly and serve a variety of marketing objectives.
Advantages of employing rendering in your business
Both you and your customers stand to gain greatly from using renderings to improve visualisation in your business. Customers are far more likely to buy from you and are even more likely to be happy with their choice if you can connect with them visually.
The customers will be more confident in their choice if you can accurately depict how a particular product will look in their home. This is because they will know upfront how their project will turn out after it’s finished.
To put it simply, using rendering for visualisation will result in greater assurance, greater happiness, and decreased regret. All this because everybody knows that a picture is worth a thousand words!
Finding the Right Rendering Software for Your Needs
There are many ways by which one can categorise and shortlist the right software. Here are some of the checkpoints one must keep in mind while selecting the perfect software for your purpose.
Ease of use
The tool shouldn’t be difficult to use or overly complicated. This is because we are left with less time for our ideas as we spend more time learning and mastering the software. Nobody likes to wait around or spend a lot of time experimenting with something they don’t know how to do.
All of us desire a render engine that is simple to use and learn while maintaining high performance. The more time you have to be innovative rather than wait, the better.
All the data you’ve created so far will be collected by your render engine and combined into a single image. For you to be confident that it will function each time, your engine must be dependable.
No matter how complex your project is or how outlandish it may appear, it should be built from the ground up to manage it. After all, you don’t want your software to limit your potential.
The degree of an image’s photorealism determines how realistic it is. The subject must appear to the viewer to be something that actually exists. Your render engine must be able to calculate precise real-world lighting including light bounces, reflections, and refractions in order to reach this level of realism. For the materials to seem good in any circumstance, they must also adhere to real-world physics.
This realism can even play a crucial role in the prototype of real-world goods before they are created if you work in design visualisation. You may get a solid concept of how a design will appear and react to light with the correct product rendering software.
In addition to all the technical considerations, the cost plays a significant role in your decision to use one render engine over another. There are many possibilities, therefore the finest render engine must strike the ideal balance between cost and performance, being both reasonably priced and able to do what you need it to do without making any trade offs.
Here are the top 10 product design software for rendering in 2022 that one must know about :
A 3D CAD program you can use to design, examine, and assess 3D designs is called Solidworks. It has been the acknowledged industry standard for engineering and design for more than 25 years. You can make personalised dashboards to share and discuss important data with other design team members.
Users of the cloud-based Solidworks platform may view, manage, annotate, and share designs from any location. It excels at 3D sculpting because its user-friendly push-pull interface streamlines the design process.
To hasten the design process, it enables collaboration between industrial and mechanical engineers on the same product model. By instantly updating your 3D Sculptor files as you work, this modelling application also aids in the elimination of errors by informing other team members of design changes.
Utilise cloud-connected solutions to fill the gap between desktop design data and safe cloud data storage. With the power of 3DEXPERIENCE Works, you can utilise Solidworks and communicate with your team and stakeholders from any location.
2. Autodesk 3DS Max
Game developers, interior designers, and architects who require expert modelling, texturing, and meshing skills are particularly fond of 3DS Max.
Character controls for bipedal motion, clothing simulation, skinning, skeletons, inverse kinematics, and character controls are all common characteristics. A robust plugin system enables third-party modules to add specific functions or rendering modes to 3DS Max if the software itself does not already support them.
Although some of these plugins are free, the top-notch ones are charged.
When it comes to modelling, 3DS Max offers patch surfaces, NURBS, and traditional polygon construction. A very broad range of rendering systems, such as mental ray and Pixar’s Renderman, can be used to produce images.
3. Autodesk Maya
One of the greatest options for 3D modelling software for animation is Autodesk Maya. This is one of the finest rendering software options and an industry-standard utilised in numerous high-budget movies, like Stranger Things. It is packed with professional-level capabilities for modelling, texturing, rendering, and other tasks.
It is frequently the software of choice for artists and animators because it is regarded as one of the best 3D character modelling programs. Maya has some extremely powerful capabilities for character animation, character movement, and the simulation of natural events like fire, sandstorms, and explosions.
The most recent version of Maya now incorporates Bifrost procedural effects, allowing for the construction of complicated elements utilising dynamic solvers. After a scene has been generated and effects have been specified, photoreal rendering utilising the Arnold RenderView technology is available for incredibly realistic results.
That indicates that Maya is an extremely sophisticated tool. Though compared to Autodesk 3DS Max, its UI is much less user-friendly. As a result, rather than being the best 3D modelling program for beginners, it is for specialists who want to achieve excellent results. It is compatible with Linux, Macs, and Windows.
Software for 3D rendering created exclusively for architects is called Lumion. Lumion can assist you in bringing your architectural concept to life if you already have a 3D model of it.
Architectural rendering and visualisation are sectors that are constantly expanding, becoming essential steps in a variety of processes, including design development, client presentations, and architectural marketing. The variety of 3D rendering software options is expanding along with the need for architectural rendering.
By revealing your design in its entire, intricate context, replete with shadows, lighting, a rich and lively entourage, and all the other advantages of a Lumion environment, Lumion helps in communicating the beauty of your work.
You may render a stunning outcome quicker than ever before, regardless of whether your project involves residential structures, interiors, landscapes, or urban environments.
From the metropolitan area to the far-off suburbs to the woods, any setting, any time of year, Lumion makes it surprisingly easy to give your design life and display it in any situation.
Lumion integrates with your design process and enables you to produce spectacular photos, movies, or panoramas that vividly depict your concepts at every revision and last-minute customer presentation.
Another product in the 3DS Dassault Systems portfolio is Catia. Besides enabling users to model items in accordance with project specifications, Catia’s platform also enables users to model products in the context of real-life usage and behaviours, incorporating that information into the design process.
Design teams can collaborate online in real time, and the technology is simple to incorporate into the workflow of other design tools. The product’s appearance and design have a big impact on whether it succeeds in the market, from the product to the transportation sectors.
With physical and virtual prototypes, you can expand your creativity in shape and material, achieve a high level of surface sophistication and quality, and receive the necessary decision-making tools. These are the main components of Catia Creation/Styling that encourage creative design.
Catia Design/Styling offers all the solutions for design creativity, surface excellence, and product experience, from 3D sketching, subdivision surface, and Class-A modelling, to 3D printing, reverse engineering, visualisation, and experience.
The first CAD-enabled SaaS product creation platform with integrated information management, real-time collaboration, and data analytics is Onshape. It may be easily loaded on any computer or smartphone for easy international communication.
Concurrent design iterations are possible, and after approval, the best elements can be incorporated into the final design. Multiple design iterations can be carried out concurrently with real-time design assessments, comments, and continuous editing, and the best elements can be added to the final design after approval.
To optimise the impact of the data the software gathers, Onshape also incorporates security and audit controls and combines them with reporting features. The manufacturing department or sources may be promptly informed of the specifications and drawings for your product.
In the past, amateurs who wanted to make animated films about enormous robots or space conflicts would employ the best free 3D animator. It has now developed to the point that numerous production firms utilise it to produce effects for expensive films.
Most of the other tools in the list of the top 3D design software are geared toward modelling or rendering. Blender is distinctive because it offers the full pipeline, which includes modelling, rigging, animation, simulation, renderer, compositing, motion tracking, and video editing.
The Blender software was created in 2002 by the Blender Foundation, an independent nonprofit. Blender, an open-source, free 3D creative suite, includes services like modelling, rigging, and animation, and it also supports game creation.
It also covers the entire 3D workflow. Future versions of Blender could be altered and customised using the Python scripting API, enabling product designers to experiment with a wide range of generating and carrying out processes. Blender is an easy-to-use program for designing products that offer a satisfying user experience.
NURBS(Non-Uniform Rational Basis Spline) curve modelling methods are used in Rhino 3D, a free-form modeller. This permits a high level of accuracy and flexibility throughout the 3D modelling process. The ability of Rhino 3D to produce realistic renderings, animations, and sketches improves user engagement as a product design tool.
The design software Rhino is ideal for graphic designers who work with curved surfaces. It is crucial for precisely simulating, for example, the contours of a human face or the body of a car or aeroplane. Rhino is the best in this area when NURB surfaces are important.
Rhino can sculpt objects, modify LIDAR scans, interact with meshes from other systems, and even render scenes using ray tracing. It is accessible for both Mac and PC users.
This offers a plugin solution and a complex developer platform, similar to 3DS Max, for people who want to create new ones. A scripting language that works in conjunction with the plugins enables the automation of intricate details or modification procedures.
9. Fusion 360
A full platform for product development was built in the cloud with Autodesk Fusion 360. This potent design tool from Autodesk not only focuses on 3D modelling and product design but also connects with other platforms to expand design possibilities or broaden the range of items that may be produced.
In addition to animation, rendering, simulation, and CNC machining preparation, it is an excellent tool for extremely precise and accurate 2D and 3D modelling. This is a straightforward yet effective product design tool that can be utilised from the development of a prototype to the finished product because it features CAD, CAM, and CAE capabilities.
Fusion 360 is regarded as an integrated CAD, CAM, and PCB program that streamlines operations through the use of a single user interface.
Creo is a 3D CAD program that improves product planning and execution, similar to the other products mentioned. Creo’s user-friendliness makes it possible to combine advanced features with cutting-edge technologies like additive manufacturing, generative design, augmented reality, and real-time simulation.
Creo is a PTC product design tool that communicates directly with other programs like SolidWorks. To help share and model concepts across the development team and all the way down to the client, a variety of extensions including the Parametric 3D modelling tools have specifically been developed.
Through the use of an intuitive interface known for its streamlined processes, the Parametric modelling toolset enables Creo users to construct projects for additive manufacturing, IoT devices, and augmented reality (AR), and apply a model-based definition in the design process.
You need to make sure you have the appropriate tools for the job, whether you’re developing your next mobile application or polishing the 3D model prototype of your next big product to reach the market.
When deciding which software is best for 3D modelling and rendering, take into account your intended purpose, needs, level of expertise, financial constraints, and what works best for your creative workflow. Before choosing, it is also necessary to try the software.
We assume that the top rendering software will provide a positive user experience and an easy-to-use interface. Despite greater learning curves, complex or advanced 3D software still must be readily available for the designers.