[Sidefx-houdini-list] mantra render farm service

Gene Dreitser keyframe at rogers.com
Thu Feb 19 09:01:44 EST 2009

Heya Mark,

I run a very small all-mantra shop in Toronto.  Do you have any preliminary cost-oriented figures?

Instinctively, I've spent whatever budget was available to build up the biggest renderfarm I could afford, that being said, there are some projects that I had to turn down simply because I'm unable to build up a farm big enough at this stage (compute power being only one of the variables -- the others being, server bandwidth, and the ifdgen (batch) licensing costs).

We share an office space with a maya-based shop that uses a render service exclusively (RenderRocket -- they have NO inhouse render capability at all), and even though it's a scary proposition (from my perspective), I've been watching them work this way rather successfully.  In short, i'm curious how it would play out.

Don't hesitate to email me off-list if have any specific questions!

Good luck,


----- Original Message ----
From: Mark Story <mstory at xion.org>
To: sidefx-houdini-list at sidefx.com
Sent: Wednesday, February 18, 2009 10:57:50 PM
Subject: [Sidefx-houdini-list] mantra render farm service

Hi there,

We (Digital Cinema Arts) will be opening a training center in Vancouver, 
B.C. soon and as part of our teaching environment we'll be providing our 
students access to a render/simulation farm, queue manager, asset 
control/version manager, shot tools, etc. and our primary render engine 
will be mantra, though we'll also have 3Delight and mental ray 
eventually as well.

So, while in the process of flushing out our business plan, the question 
has arisen a few times if it makes sense to offer mantra rendering 
services to commercial/vfx clients as well.  We've always focused on 
education needs but considering the changes in the economy, and the CG 
biz in overall, maybe it makes sense to explore that market ... we're 
clearly not sure, thus I'd like to pose the question to the general 
Houdini community:

If there was a remote rendering service offering mantra, would you see a 
need for that service in your business model?


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