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Isotropic BRDF Based Lighting

High-Tech And Vertex Juggling - NVIDIA's New GeForce3 GPU
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The idea behind BRDF is to make surfaces of different materials appear real, independent from the angle you are looking at the surface. BRDF stands for bi-directional reflectance distribution function, which is that here:

There are a lot of different surface models and many complex math formulas to realize some level of BRDF in GeForce3. Instead of going into any further detail I rather suggest we look at a demo picture.

The left sample shows a woman with a velvet dress using Minnaert Reflections, a form of BRDF, the right picture is simply using normal shading algorithms. Unfortunately I had to scale the pictures down, but you can still just about see the difference in realism between the two.

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