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Hello,

Upon learning Cycles 4D and other renders, I never truly understood how to setup, render, and use a Z-Depth. I know it has to do with depth of field, but I don't completely understand how it works, and how to use it in compositing, such as After Effects. That being said, I rendered 2 images. The main frame, and a Z-Depth Pass. According to the Cycles 4D manual I set it up right, so my question is, how do I then use it? How can I control the Depth of Field in post, if my main footage has Depth of Field already added, or is it more like, a Z-Depth pass is for footage without DOP. If that's the case, how do I render a Z-Pass, if the DOP settings in the camera tag isn't added?

 

I apologize for the questions, I just want to figure this out once and for all.

 

Best,

 

Budda

mpv1_zdepth_1_0469.png

mainv1_0469.png

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Z-Depth can be used for different kinds of effects that rely on the depth information. These include but are not limited to DoF (what you already know) and fog effects for example.

 

When you want to add your DoF in Post with Z-Depth you DO NOT use DoF in your final renders. The entire point with Post DoF is that you don't have to invest the additional rendertime to do it properly in the render. It does have it's limitations and does not look as good as "real" DoF, but in many scenes it works just fine.

 

EDIT: You import the Z-Depth into After Effects and apply the Camera Blur effect on your main footage. Then you use the Z-Depth as "Mask".

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    I've been playing around with it, thank you for taking the time to explain it!

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