Trying to find ways to import photorealistic Blender renders into Unity


While I was doing Complete C# Unity Game Developer 3D, I noticed the course doesn’t cover how to import Blender models into Unity at/near Cycles’ quality. So I spent hours searching for ways to do it and found a thread discussing the possibility by exporting mesh in PNG:

While the approach given in thread may work for simple models, it’s far from practical. So if anyone knows how to import Blender models with shader data into Unity at photorealistic quality, please provide me with a detailed how-to.

Thanks for reading.

Afaik that’s the best you’ll get. While shaders are not a Unity or Blender specific thing, the renderer is what determines what it would look like. Cycles is a type of renderer used in Blender, but it does not exist in Unity. With HDRP you may be able to tweak stuff to get it good enough, but you are still going to have to create shaders and materials the match those coming from Blender.

Unity is a game engine that ideally needs to create the render hundreds of times per second, while a photorealistic render from Blender can take days to complete a single frame. I saw an article several years ago that showed a single pixar movie frame that took 2 days to render on pixar’s proprietary render farm. The closest you may get is HDRP and to be honest, HDRP scares me. The difference between it and URP is vast… I have done extremely little in HDRP.

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Thanks for your helpful insight. I rememer trying to render a Maya scene to a pixar movie grade spending an entire day a few years ago, only to burn the login board of a high-end intel-chip Mac. The same Mac with a new mobo can just run Unity while following the online course, so it may not be good enough to test its HDRP.

On a side note, even M1 Mac does not give noticeably better render performance, M2 Mac or above will be ideal.

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