I'm not sure if this is the right place to put this or not...but oh well. I'm about to start beating my face into a brick wall pretty soon anyway.
I'm trying to get a nice render of the interior of my corporate jet in 3ds Max similar to this: https://scontent-ord1-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xpf1/t31.0-8/336501_455727117805002_1723797319_o.jpg https//scontent-ord1-1.xx.fbcdn.net/hphotos-xap1/t31.0-8/271700_455727221138325_1100215645_o.jpg
(Image credits go to Military Visualizations.)
It looks to me like a giant dome-shaped light is shining inward through all windows from every direction and casts soft shadows while still indicating the presence of a distinct light source. So although there may be some AO in there, it's not what is producing the main shadows. However, every attempt I make by using the "tried and true" methods of interior lighting--like the Daylight system/skylights/sky portals--just does not work at all. Everything has kind of a weird reflective highlight where it shouldn't be, even when using ambient lights only. It doesn't help that my model's scale is very small as well (system scale has to be in meters to export properly) and scaling everything up has no effect whatsoever. Increasing the density and number of rays per sample in the Final Gather setup helps to some extent, but I have to use insanely large values which make render times take HOURS to complete...even at 800x600 image resolution. I've even tried placing a free light/omni/whatever in each window and using one to control all of its copies, and that takes extremely long as well...Even on the "Draft" Final Gather setting.
I feel as if I'm wasting hours of my life and getting absolutely nowhere. Can somebody please help get me on the right track?