Convert Materials from Cycles to Blender Internal Render

These links claim that it IS possible to transfer Material data between Cycles and Internal, as long as they were created in the Node Editor.

Both have very different options, (one has BDSF shaders and the other has plain old Diffuse and Specular whatnot) but Cycles is much better for designing materials.

Unfortunately, when making animations, Cycles render uses a LOT more resources than Internal render.

Is it possible to design a material in Cycles render (node editor), use the scripts in the links above to move the node data over to Blender Internal, and render animations and scenes with intact Cycles Material data, even though both offer different kinds of nodes for material design?


1 Answer 1


Materials for blender internal have limited support for nodes, while cycles uses nodes only. The cycles nodes will not work for internal materials nor will internal nodes or material settings work with cycles.

You can create a material that has both nodes in it. There are some nodes that are common to both and can be interlinked with each other.

What this means is you cannot use the same nodes for both render engines, but you can integrate two node setups into one material so that one material can be used for both render engines.

For a simple material that uses an image texture and a diffuse node this will be a simple task. For more complex materials you may find it hard to get the two to match up.

As an example you could look at the materials used in CGCookies Flexrig, the materials there are deliberately created to work with both render engines.

While not large enough to be very clear this is one of the materials in the Flexrig, The red and green frames are cycles nodes while the darker section at the bottom is for BI. The purple section is common values used in both node setups. The cycles nodes appears simpler because they are groups.

enter image description here

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Probably a good case for baking a material in cycles and adding it as an image texture for internal. $\endgroup$
    – sambler
    Commented Mar 22, 2015 at 22:12
  • $\begingroup$ That's even better. I had no idea Cycles materials could be baked for Internal usage $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 23, 2015 at 21:29

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