Render Tab

When you click Output Tools > Render, the Render tab in the Output Tools dialog box contains settings that control the rendering process.

Output File

Filename Lets you name the output file.
Output Folder Sets the folder where the render will be saved.
Image Format Sets the format of the output file. (Radiance HDR preserves 32-bit per channel RGB data, but the other formats do not.)
Output Mode Available in SOLIDWORKS Visualize Standard and SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional:
  • Render. Renders a single image using the current camera.
  • All Cameras.

    Renders a single image for each camera in the scene. This produces the same number of renderings as you have cameras in the scene.

Available only in SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional:

  • All Configurations.

    Renders all configurations in the project.

  • Panoramic.

    Takes an image cube. (An image cube is six images taken from the same location, pointing at 90º angles from each other). It stitches the six shots together to form a 360º panorama around the camera. Then it outputs an HTML file and stores content images in a subfolder so you can view the panorama in any browser. You can pivot and zoom (not pan) the camera in the browser. This is convenient for interior spaces, and you can use it with all render modes.

  • Interactive Image.

    Takes several stills from dozens of camera locations in multiple orbits to support the ability to move around the output model in any browser. Parameters include:

    • Orbits. Sets the number of camera height levels.
    • Images per Orbit. Sets the number of renders from each camera orbit.
    • Start Angle. Sets the lowest angle of orbit.
    • End Angle. Sets the highest angle of orbit.
Include Alpha Proves the support for alpha channel files (.png and .tiff).


Size Sets image size in pixels, inches, centimeters, or millimeters.
Resolution Sets the print resolution to pixels per inch or pixels per centimeter in the output file.
Result (Read only.) Displays the size in pixel per in/cm/mm from the settings above.

Render Settings

Renderer Selection Sets the rendering engine:
  • Preview. Uses a hardware agnostic, high quality interactive WYSIWYG rasterizer that creates a realtime and noise free approximation of lighting.
  • Fast. Hardware agnostic, biased, interactive WYSIWYG raytracing using Nvidia iray which enables fastest time-to-quality lighting.
  • Accurate. Hardware agnostic, unbiased, interactive WYSIWYG pathtracing using Nvidia iray which enables accelerated best quality lighting.
Available only in SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional:
  • Boost cluster. Renders image to a Boost cluster.
Render Mode Sets high quality rendering options:
  • Time Limit. Stops the rendering after reaching the time limit you enter, regardless of the final quality. After the render starts, you can stop it early.
  • Quality. Stops the rendering after reaching the number of rendering passes you enter, regardless of time.
Render Passes Represents the number of iterations or cycles performed on the image where each iteration or cycle increases the quality and reduces the noise present in the final image.

Fewer passes yields an image in a shorter amount of time but with potentially less completion and more noise.

More passes yields an image in a greater amount of time but with less or no noise and full completion.

In most cases, 250 passes would result in a complete image except for fully enclosed interior or enclosed environments which typically need 1000 passes to generate a complete image.

Show Progress Opens the Render viewport to let you see the progress of the rendering as it occurs.
Render Device Sets graphics card usage:
  • CPU. Uses your CPU exclusively (good for users with basic graphics cards or who wish to perform other graphics intensive tasks in parallel with rendering).
  • GPU. Uses your CUDA enabled Nvidia card exclusively (good for users with powerful graphics cards or multiple graphics cards for maximum render acceleration).
  • Hybrid. Uses your CPU and GPU.
Start Render Starts rendering using the offline renderer on the local computer.
Close Saves the current render settings and closes the Output Tools dialog box so that you can make additional changes to cameras, appearances, and other settings.

You can then reopen the Output Tools dialog box and use the saved settings.

Render setting changes are stored with the currently active Render Profile and persist across different visualize sessions automatically.

Available only in SOLIDWORKS Visualize Professional

Render Output Passes Renders a single standard image if you select None. Any other selection also generates specialized output passes that you can use in post-processing software (such as Adobe® Photoshop®) to enhance the normal output pass.

Select from the following output passes:

  • Beauty. Uses a regular raytraced image. When rendering multiple passes of a scene, the beauty pass is the one that features the most significant information about the objects in it. This usually includes the main, full-color rendering of those objects, including diffuse illumination and color. A beauty pass does not include reflections, highlights, or shadows, which are usually separate passes.
  • Gloss. Uses 50% rough chrome for isolating reflections.
  • Specular. Uses 100% chrome for isolating highlights.
  • Black Specular. Same as Specular, but shows the reflections over a glossy black paint to collect the correct fresnel.
  • Roughness. Renders each part based on its material roughness. This is an advanced version of the Gloss pass which retains per material roughness.
  • Incandescence. Lights the scene using lights that you placed in the scene, if any, but not the HDRI environment. If you have not put lights in the scene, this output pass is black.
  • Ambient Occlusion. Same as Global Illumination except for collecting the shadow information from an evenly lit white environment. Shadows are not colored, nor are they directional.
  • Floor Shadow. Shows floor shadows only.
  • Global Illumination. Paints the objects in the scene flat white, and captures internal shadowing (the object shadowing itself). Global illumination is a superset of the radiosity and raytracing rendering techniques. The goal of global illumination rendering is to compute all of the possible light interactions between surfaces in a given scene to obtain a photorealistic image. All combinations of diffuse and specular reflections and transmissions must be accounted for. Effects such as color bleeding and caustics must also be included in a global illumination simulation.
  • Object. Uses a black and white mask to delineate between the 3D model in the scene versus the background.
  • Depth. Renders the Z-depth of the camera in terms of grayscale value. You can use this output pass during post-processing to apply items such as depth of field and fog. Z-depth is the distance a particular point or surface lies inside a scene. Z-depth information is used to calculate where a light casts shadows, and also to calculate which surfaces are visible to the camera during rendering and which are obscured by nearer geometry.
  • Clown. Paints each part a separate flat color.
Enable Denoiser Uses the Denoiser for offline renderings. The Denoiser is not automatically used for offline renderings or renderings using the Queue.

When selected, you need to reduce Render Passes to 1/10 of what you use without the Denoiser for increased performance. For example, a complex scene that needs 5000 passes can finish in 500 with Enable Denoiser selected, and the standard 500 passes can finish in 50. If you do not reduce Render Passes with Enable Denoiser selected, performance does not improve. You may be able to use even fewer passes with the Denoiser depending on your goal for the image.

Send to Queue

(Check box and button)

When the Send to Queue check box is checked, clicking Send to Queue adds the current rendering to the SOLIDWORKS Visualize Queue so you can render it later.