Found this nice little free 'unbiased' renderer a week ago named Indigo. Real fun to play around with and as such I scripted up a 3dsmax interface for it. Give it a shot in case youre bored ;)
For detailed instructions make sure to visit http://www.trinisica.com/sub_script-documentation.asp?lv=2&mode=1&script=2
* Links Indigo 'into' 3dsmax.
* Write XML - export scenes and launch render with one button. No hand editing required.
* Material Override library that gets appended into .xml file enables side-by-side rendering. No need to 'ruin' a scenes materials to get results from Indigo
* Mesh light support as object modifier
* Full netrendering support with custom listener/server. Launch Indigo master - local slaves and unlimited amount of renderfarm slaves through - virtually -one button
* Support for large scenes that exceed the 65k 3ds format limit - setup invisible to user.
0.1.5 For Indigo 0.4 - Available Now
* Changed some code and XML export to be compatible with Indigo 0.4
0.1.4 For Indigo 0.3 - Available Now
* Added ui/controls for general render settings
* Fixed so that the local slave gets shut down if the 'kill indigo slaves' indidual control is used.
* Fixed 'bug' with capped image height/width
0.1.3 For Indigo 0.3
* Added an option to specify time limit for rendering on the slaves. Enabling it to be used a bit easier in a renderfarm setting
0.1.2 For Indigo 0.3
* Finally fixed the FOV calculation to be spot on..
* Various small fixed and UI addition to bring in line with the latest Indigo 0.3 spec.
Important Usage Manual:
* To enable the netrendering - run tIL-listener.exe on ALL machines. Remember to edit each .ini file to point to where Indigo resides. The files in the /executableHelpFiles/ should be included in Windows by default - copy these to the /listener/ folder in case it throws an error or to be safe always put these files in the same folder as the tIL-listener.exe
* At the moment the tIndigoLink.matlib.txt file gets appended to the .xml file under ALL model files in case the scene is larger than 65k (3ds restriction). Put material definitions in this file that you want Indigo to use..
* The tIndigoLink.slaves.ini tells tIndigoLink what slaves to use for netrendering. Note that its a two value list with Machinename/IP number as the first entry and number of Indigo process as the second entry. I.e. if you got a 2 cpu machine you should at the moment (Indigo 0.3) put this number to 2 and the tIL-listener.exe will launch 2 process of Indigo on that machine.
* Inside Max: At the moment youre required to use a Target Camera. Remember that the camera target is the focal point in case DOF is enabled.
* Inside Max: Use a Target Direct light as your sun - this will be pretty accurate in terms of what Indigo uses. The Target Spot doesnt necessarily give you the same 'view'.
* Using tIndigoLink in Max: When 'Auto-Increment Render Images' checkbox the tIndigoLink will copy Indigo's output file to a backup folder at increasing intervals. Enables you to view the process once the render is done or recover an earlier version as backup