How to set up HDRI environment?

Environment HDRI lighting tutorial:

To use an HDR bitmap as the environment for your scene:

Method 1 - 3ds Max Environment

1. In 3ds Max go to Rendering > Environment... window and click on the "none" button below "Environment Map".

2. Find and load your HDR bitmap.

3. Drag-and-drop the loaded bitmap's name from the "Environment Map" slot into an empty slot in material editor. When asked, pick "instance" and press "ok".

4. Make sure that in the bitmap's parameters, under "coordinates" rollout, "Environ" is checked and mapping is set to spherical or other, corresponding to your bitmap's mapping.

5. From now on, your HDR bitmap will be used both as the background for your scene and to generate lighting.

Method 2 - Corona Environment

Alternatively, you can go to Render Setup > Scene > Scene Environment and under "Scene environment" switch from "Use 3ds max settings" to "Use Corona". Then load your bitmap into Corona's environment slot. With this setup, the map in 3ds Max's environment slot will be ignored. There is no performance or quality difference between these two setups.

Environment Overrides

If you want to use HDR bitmaps as overrides, you can put them respectively in "Direct visibility override", "Reflections override" or "Refractions override".

Different maps in different override slots:

Result of using these overrides:

Per-material overrides

You can also use HDR bitmaps as reflection or refraction overrides for each material. To do this, go to your Corona material and load your HDR bitmap into the material's "Reflect BG override" or "Refract BG override".

Result of using different overrides for different objects:

See also: How do I align Corona Sun with my HDR background?