One of the biggest struggles I had when I started out was getting my renders to look somewhat decent. No-one likes the fake 3D Software look, but if you just create a few shapes and hit render you will get exactly that.
This is one of the reasons why the learning curve can feel so steep. In order to get decent results you have to understand the world of render engines. Cinema 4D comes with a few render engines out of the box. The physical render engine can give you beautiful results if you know how to set it up.
The main advantage of the Physical renderer is rendered effects (not post-effects), which are very accurate and realistic.
I’ve been using both physical render and standard render for a while now, The physical render opens more possibilities for the creation of realistic images with different kinds of photographic effects like Depth Of Field, Chromatic Abberation, Vignetting and Lens Distortion.
Animation vs stills
It seems that physical renderer is getting a bad reputation for being slow. At some point this is important because it affects a couple of things.
Firstly, if you render stills it’s not such a big deal to wait 10 minutes for a final render, even waiting an hour for all the noise to clean up isn’t such a big deal. However in animations, you need at least 24 frames a second, so it adds up very quickly and speed will be more important. Speed is way more important, unless you like spending thousands of dollars on render farms.
Cinema 4D has overtaken Maya and Lightwave as the chosen tool for many in the field of 3D. The ease of use has been a major factor, and with the addition of Vray and a huge resource of plugins, The interface and customisation is a lesson to even the likes of Adobe – the ability to drag pallets around and dock them used to be the pride of Photoshop and Illustrator until Maxon took it to a whole new level.