V-Ray is a rendering engine that is used as an extension of certain 3D computer graphics software.
The core developers of V-Ray are Vladimir Koylazov and Peter Mitev of Chaos Software production studio established in 1997, based in Sofia, Bulgaria.
It is a rendering engine that uses advanced techniques, for example global illumination algorithms such as path tracing, photon mapping, irradiance maps and directly computed global illumination. The use of these techniques often makes it preferable to conventional renderers which are provided as standard with 3d software, and generally renders using these technique can appear more photo-realistic to the human eye, as actual lighting effects are more realistically emulated. The use of this engine has been known to increase the necessary computational power and rendering times due to the complicated nature and volume of calculations required.
V-Ray is used in the development of film productions and multi-million dollar game productions.
It is also used extensively in making realistic 3D renderings for architecture.
It is compatible with packages such as Sketchup, Autodesk 3ds Max, Maya, Rhino, TrueSpace and Maxon Cinema 4d, and is compatible with 32-bit and 64-bit architectures.
 V-Ray and Autodesk 3ds Max
It is widely used as a rendering engine in substitution of the standard and mental ray renderers which are included bundled with 3ds Max. V-Ray continues to be compatible with versions of the 3ds Max that predate Autodesk's acquisition of 3ds Max.
V-Ray was later made compatible with the Autodesk's stripped down architectural-specific 3D CAD software Autodesk VIZ.