So I went looking for iClone as an alternative to Iray in Daz, because I finally lost patience with it (single 1070 gtx, here), even for many stills. I've been slowly learning how to do lighting and settings to get pretty darn close, I think--particularly with the DH skin shader. Here's an example:
That's 1800 frames, which would take weeks
in Iray on my rig, if my laptop didn't just burn up trying.
Here's a comparison of the same character--the one on the left is in iClone, the one on the right in Daz Iray. Background's not the same, and I couldn't get the post quite the same, and I've added more wrinkles to the iClone version but image quality is very, very close.
I replaced my default project with a project with my lights and settings so I wouldn't have to set it all up every time. Everything is maxed out, except shadow resolution, which I turn up to at least 2048, maybe more, if it's close ups on faces for final render. Make sure GI is on for final render, too, and this should load with my tone mapping settings. Things will slow down while you're animating using this (ok not by Iray standards, but by normal iClone standards), so I put the viewport on Quick Mode, while animating. I don't use Super Sampling usually, because I can't see anything different, and it will slow things waaaay down. Again, not by Iray standards, but once you get used to the normal render, it feels crazy slow.
I attached my blank starter project to play with. Everything in it is standard iClone lighting, etc., just set up the way I like it, if you want to try it. I just keep tweaking until I get something I like. I think that's ok to do...
Hope that answered some of your questions.
Life-long learner and having waaaay too much fun with iClone! Youtube Channel: Pandora's Box
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