I'll readily admit I don't know what specifically you are referring to here but it seems like to me there are simpler more effective rendering solutions for items like shadow maps etc. I know I use 500x500 shadow maps in my scenes and I can render a 150 frame clip in about 5-6 minutes (give or take on the other effects involved).
finalFlares, the successor of RealLensFlare II, is available now as a stand alone option for 3ds max 6/7 and Autodesk VIZ 2005. Finally, one of the best and most powerful F/X packages for 3ds max becomes available to every 3D artist for an affordable price.
Studios around the globe are using RealLensFlare and are upgrading to finalFlares already! The finalFlares effects engine has been used many major movie and game titles of today. Movies like Star Trek Nemesis, Lethal Weapon, Lost in Space, Schuh des Manitu or such million seller game titles like Command and Conquer, Star Craft, Diablo have all been using finalFlares F/X technology to do their special effects.