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Ian Ross has just released a book on Anim8or. It's perect for a beginner and a good reference for experienced users. It contains detailed chapters on every aspect, with many examples. Get your own copy here: "Anim8or Tutorial Book"

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Messages - Steve

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Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Art and mesh clipping
« on: March 21, 2008, 01:18:16 am »
Can you post an image?

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: ART Light Attributes and AA
« on: March 21, 2008, 01:15:10 am »
Antialiasing is done iquite differently in the ray tracer and the scanline renderers.

The scanline renderer always uses a 4x4 grid of samples per pixel with all the samples in 4 rows and 4 columns.  This is why it's so fast - many of the computations are done once per image instead of per pixel or per sample.  But even samples are very bad for soft shadows.  So for soft shadows multiple shadow samples are takes for each image sample.  First a few samples are taken.  If any of them are different (i.e. one is in a shadow and one is not) then that pixel and the neighboring ones are samples a higher number of times.  This allows a high number of samples to be used on shadow edges and fewer in areas that they aren't needed because they're all the same.

The ray tracer uses just one shadow sample per image sample.  But because each sample is independently traced a better distribution can be done.  Multijitrered is a very good method - much better than random or Monte Carlo.  Likewise glossy surfaces trace just one sample per pixel.  That's why non-aa glossy surfaces are so speckled.  Over all it's best to do it this way because you sample all the varying parameters evenly.  The scanline renderer samples shadows at a much higher rate that it does the image - but that's required due to very thing that makes scanline do fast - the regularly spaced image samples.

So you will not be able to exactly match scanline images with ray traced for this an a dozen other reasons.

You're right.  There is no near and far Z with ray tracing.  There is no need for it becuase thereisn't a perspective projection, so no divide and all of it's related precision problems.  Everything is done in world coordinates.

Are you sure?  What kind of light are you using?  They render for me when I use the default lights and a spotlight.

blanc - no, you can't combine materials - yet.  I  plan to add more materials and options to both the scanline renderer and to the ray tracer.  One possibility is to add more complex operateor - like a blend option that would aallow you to combine two or more materials.  Another is to allow various components like the specular hilight to be a general material.  There ar some major design issues I have to work out first including how to present this to users.  Attributes are quite flexible but not very easy to use ao I'd like another technique.

CobraSpectre - No colored shadows yet either but they are in the works.  Caustics are much harder to do (and can take a LOT more time) so I don't think I'll get to them anytime soon.

There ther's the current rendering time.  I haven't done much to speed it up yet.  I hope to be able to at least halve the time for a typical render.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Environment panoramas
« on: March 20, 2008, 07:02:42 pm »
Image backgrounds are problematic.  They don't extend beyong the visible background.  Reflections that don't intersect the image would have to be a constant color.  Cube map environments would work OK however.  I'll fix this.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: ART and textures
« on: March 20, 2008, 05:10:17 pm »
What specifically are you trying to do?

Not all raytracing materials support all textures.  The dielectric and transparent classes only support alpha channel textures but even that is not a physically realistic.  That would require 3D textures.  Other properties like diffuse color don't make any sense in those classes since they are surface properties and can't be integrated throughout the material like the solid diffuse color can.

The glossyreflector class doesn't support diffuse textures but it should because that class only needs surface properties.

The base Anim8or class should support all textures, however.

I hadn't even thought about that!  I'll fix it so that it obeys the shadow setting.

Just to peak your interest, here's an example of just one new thing you can do with it:

Be the first on your block to get a copy!

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Knife Tool
« on: March 20, 2008, 02:06:25 am »
1) You can't use the knife tool or Parameteric shapes like a Sphere or a Cylinder.  Convert them to a Mesh first with the Build->ConvertToMesh command.

2) The cut tool crash has been fixed in the v0.97 preview.

I have posted a new preview, v0.97.  It's main feature is a ray tracer called ART (for Anim8or Ray Tracer, naturally!)  Check out the "v0.97 Preview" link in the menu or just click here:  Don't miss the ray tracer documentation either:

Here's an example of just one new thing you can do with it:

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Modefers and primitives.
« on: March 09, 2008, 10:20:42 pm »
csf: Modifiers certainly need to be cleaned up, I agree.  But I don't think adding a modifier stack like 3D Studio uses is a good idea for Anim8or.  It can be quite confusing to new users and adds a lot of complexity.

There are a lot of good things mentioned in these "wish list" posts but 1) most are either already on my "to do" list (or another method to achieve the same thing), 2) most have been mentioned before, and 3) this forum isn't really supposed to be a dumping ground for everything that anybody coupld possibly want Anim8or to do.  It's supposed to be for discussing problems and issues related to the v0.96 preview.  While that does include changes in how things work and related enhancements, it does not include "any thing anyone ever wanted added to Anim8or".  None the less, I don't want to prevent people from posting new ideas here but neither do I want to endorse it.  So I normally don't reply but I do read them all.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Windows Vista Save Glitch
« on: March 07, 2008, 05:57:45 pm »
You also might get things to improve by upgrading your graphics driver.  There are many little bugs in pretty much all Vista graphics drivers for OpenGL but they are continually being fixed.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Import bug (.3ds and .lwo)
« on: March 07, 2008, 05:55:18 pm »
There is a new version of the lightwave format.  Anim8or only supports the old one.  Unfortunately they used the sam extension.

.3ds files use several different ways to position components.  Anim8or's default works with most models.  You can change to an alternate method with the Options->Debug->3dsOffsets command that handles most others, but not all.

Anim8or v0.98 Discussion Forum / Re: Windows Vista Save Glitch
« on: March 06, 2008, 08:04:14 pm »
Anim8or just calls the standard file save dialog function in Windows.  It has a "*.an8" filter by default and an option to choose "*.*".  I would think that Vista would behave the same as Windows in this respect.  I'll try it on a Vista computer to see if I can see something.

General Anim8or Forum / Re: Error: Failure in OpenGL Library Call
« on: March 04, 2008, 07:04:09 pm »
Are you running in 16 bits per pixel or higher?  Make sure that you are using the NVidia chip to run your display.  If you're using the Chrome 9 I think threre are problems running OpenGL code as Anim8or needs it.

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