Aws - Advanced Water Shader For 2.81+

by Oliver J Post in Materials, Shaders, Textures

IMPORTANT: This shader is only for Blender 2.81 and newer

AWS is the ultimate shader for rendering realistic natural water in still scenes 

What you get:

-AWS-Volumetric Shader: use when big and/or important objects are in the water and a realistic underwater falloff is required. Requires a high amount of transmission samples

-AWS-Performance Shader: use when underwater falloff is not required and/or decreasing render times is important. Also use this one when rendering in Eevee


Q= How do I start using this shader?

A= Download the attached .blend file and save it in a location of your choice. In the file you wish to use the shader, go to file>append and locate the AWS blend file. When selecting the file you will be presented with a menu structure, go to the materials folder. Here you will find the two shaders.

Q= I am not seeing the underwater color when using the AWS-Volumetric shader

A= This means your volumetric samples are set as 0, change this to 1. You will find this in the Render tab under the Light Paths menu

Q= All the reflections in the water are blurry

A= This means you either have very high waves (which realistically cause blurry reflections) or the Long Exposure slider is not set to 0

Q= I am not seeing the underwater color in Eevee

A= Please make sure the Eevee/Cycles slider is set to 1

Q= The Performance Shader is barely reflective when rendering in Cycles

A= Please make sure the Eevee/Cycles slider is set to 2

Q= I am using the AWS-Volumetric shader, but I can't see anything under the water surface

A= Make sure the mesh your shader is applied is solid (so not a plane) and itdoesn't have any holes, it needs to be a closed shape. If this doesn't work, make sure your murkyness slider is not set too high.


Because of the complexity of the node setup, please do not refrain from reaching out with questions or suggestions


Video music: Soulstone by Audionatix licensed under CC BY 3.0, listen here:

The shader uses a node trick for making an advanced Color ramp by using math nodes. This trick was invented by PGMath and shared on the Blender Stackexchange

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Dev Fund Contributor
Published over 1 year ago
Software Version 2.81, 2.82, 2.83
License Creative Commons
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