Match Settings with CineRender Surfaces

Load Cinema 4D Settings

Use this command to import the settings of a specific Cinema4D material from an external file; these settings will be loaded for the current surface in ARCHICAD.

From the Match Settings pop-up in Surfaces, choose the Load C4D Settings command. 

In the appearing dialog box, browse for a Cinema 4D file. This can be either a single material or an entire model in Cinema 4D format.

If you choose a model file, a chooser dialog box appears: select the Cinema4D Material you need. 

Click OK to load the chosen material. Its settings override those of your current surface.


-The maximum number of parameters that can be used in a surface is 1024. (See Limit on Number of Surface Parameters, below).

-Node-based Materials from CINEMA 4D are not supported in ARCHICAD. Such imported materials will be displayed with a specially generated material instead.

Match CineRender Settings with Basic Engine

All surfaces are specific to the engine for which they are set up: Basic (including OpenGL) or CineRender. If you change a surface parameter for one engine (e.g. Basic), those modifications will not take effect for the same surface parameter if you switch to another engine (e.g. CineRender). Generally, CineRender contains a larger number of more sophisticated parameters than the Basic or OpenGL engines (which are very similar to each other).

Two commands are available to help synchronize the appearance of surface defined in CineRender with its appearance for the Basic (or OpenGL) engine. Note that due to the difference in parameters, the result might only be an approximation. Generally, the basic parameters of simple surfaces will be matched accurately.

From the Match Settings pop-up in Surfaces:

Update Basic Settings (from CineRender): This will apply the CineRender surface settings to its surface counterpart in Basic/OpenGL.

Note: Because the Basic/OpenGL engine uses relatively few parameters, the effect of this command may be minimal. In particular, the parameters of procedural surfaces (in CineRender) cannot be replicated in Basic/OpenGL.

Update CineRenderSettings (from Basic): This will apply the Basic/OpenGL surface settings to its surface counterpart in CineRender.

Limit on Number of Surface Parameters

Because of the many layers of shaders available for CineRender surfaces, you could, in theory, set an unlimited number of parameters for a given surface.

However, in ARCHICAD, the maximum number of parameters that can be used in a surface is 1024. (ARCHICAD uses the surface attribute in GDL objects, too, and the GDL programming language sets a limit of 1024 parameters.)

You may encounter this limit

when loading a surface from a Cinema 4D file (see Load Cinema 4D Settings, above)

when configuring your own custom surface

The solution is to limit the number of shaders used in the surface, and/or to use a more simple shader structure (limiting the number of embedded layers).