PDA

View Full Version : Depth map export format missing!



jaxtone
07-24-2009, 03:52 PM
Hi!

I wonder three things.

1. Where are the RPF exporter hidden in Lightwave 9.6?

2. Anyone knows of a basic tutorial of how to use the depth map image from Lightwave in After Effects?

3. Are the EXR exporter in Lightwave functional and in that case where can I open the rendered files to look at them?

jaxtone
07-24-2009, 04:49 PM
Ok, I found the RPF exporter in the image filter map.

But hereīs what After Effects say when importing the RPF file that was rendered in Lightwave:

After Effects: AEGP Plugin RPF Import: No camera data in the file.

Seems like LW and After FX canīt communicat. I just want to create a functional depth map in LW and get some help of how I can use the exported file from LW in After Effects!

I just want to add some DOF on a test rendered image.

dwburman
07-25-2009, 11:25 AM
It's been a while since I've worked with depth maps.

I don't know if a depth map is considered camera data. Does the footage import fail at this point or is it just letting you know that something is missing?

I don't think LW's EXR saver saves a depth channel. The EXRTrader plugin can handle it. http://www.exrtrader.com/

If you want to render a separate depth pass, an old (manual) trick is to use fog. I think you can set your objects to matte objects and set the color to black. Then turn on fog and set the start and end distances and change the color to white (or make the objects white and the fog black).

jaxtone
07-25-2009, 03:50 PM
Thanks for the info... I think the EXRTrader will be the best! Gonna read some more about to see if itīs easy to use or a time consumer.

Still itīs so strange when NT adds features named as EXR savers that actually donīt do the job right. Are these items maybe just placed as dummies in the program library as the total illusion "Collada". My question might sound rude but did LW add this to make the program look better than it really is when talking of export/import functions?

I might sound a little bit frustrated and yes I am. After spending weeks to investigate why stuff like "Collada" doesnīt work properly in Lightwave, must add that still not a sound from their support teams has been heard and this leads to frustration and lack of confidence for them. All tracks from external support teams, developers and other suppliers of softwares that handles the Collada interface without any problems points in the LW direction. So I just donīt see why LE add features that doesnīt work in the real world!

By judging either whatīs functional or not working in the real world you get to the conclusion that some promised product features are thinner than air.


It's been a while since I've worked with depth maps.

I don't know if a depth map is considered camera data. Does the footage import fail at this point or is it just letting you know that something is missing?

I don't think LW's EXR saver saves a depth channel. The EXRTrader plugin can handle it. http://www.exrtrader.com/

If you want to render a separate depth pass, an old (manual) trick is to use fog. I think you can set your objects to matte objects and set the color to black. Then turn on fog and set the start and end distances and change the color to white (or make the objects white and the fog black).

Lightwolf
07-27-2009, 09:42 AM
Thanks for the info... I think the EXRTrader will be the best! Gonna read some more about to see if itīs easy to use or a time consumer.
You can always download the manual, which now also includes a section describing all the buffers as well as information on what kind of depth buffer LW exports and how to handle it.

Still itīs so strange when NT adds features named as EXR savers that actually donīt do the job right.
You can still export all buffers into separate EXRs using vanilla LW (if you use the included buffer saver).
exrTrader just gives you a lot more options and control.

I'm not too familiar with AE anymore (the last version I really used was V4 - yes, V4, not CS4), but I do know that CS4 includes a plugin that loads layered EXRs properly (and it's also available for CS3 for free).

I don't know what kind of depth maps AE expects and how they are implemented though.
Theoretically, as it's a float compositor now, it should work with LW depth maps without a problem (once you get the float data into AE).

Cheers,
Mike

jaxtone
07-27-2009, 03:34 PM
Ok thanks again for taking your time Lightwolf! I appreciate it!

I also remember After FX v.4. But that was even before the dinosaurs were introduced to this planet... :D

I always thought of After FX as a amateur joke but I must say that the latest version is very nice to work with. Loads of possibilities and way much cheaper than DS or another of them deadly expensive post production alternatives that only excist in my dreams.


You can always download the manual, which now also includes a section describing all the buffers as well as information on what kind of depth buffer LW exports and how to handle it.

You can still export all buffers into separate EXRs using vanilla LW (if you use the included buffer saver).
exrTrader just gives you a lot more options and control.

I'm not too familiar with AE anymore (the last version I really used was V4 - yes, V4, not CS4), but I do know that CS4 includes a plugin that loads layered EXRs properly (and it's also available for CS3 for free).

I don't know what kind of depth maps AE expects and how they are implemented though.
Theoretically, as it's a float compositor now, it should work with LW depth maps without a problem (once you get the float data into AE).

Cheers,
Mike

Lightwolf
07-27-2009, 04:05 PM
I also remember After FX v.4. But that was even before the dinosaurs were introduced to this planet... :D
Yeah, I'm apparently older :D

I always thought of After FX as a amateur joke but I must say that the latest version is very nice to work with. Loads of possibilities and way much cheaper than DS or another of them deadly expensive post production alternatives that only excist in my dreams.
I started using Fusion with Version 2.5 and didn't regret it since (after a stint with Paint and Effect, later on bought by discreet, then autodesk and turned into combustion). And I suppose in the end it's been a less expensive ride than sticking with Adobe all the time.

Cheers,
Mike

jaxtone
07-29-2009, 06:22 AM
I remember a presentation of Fusion at the NAB in Las Vegas 2004. The presentation were kind of distorted, stressed and very complex so even if I noticed the possiblilites in Fusion it just never feel enough smooth to me. I can either blame this on the demo-guy who made the chaos complete or on my own stupidity but it for sure lead me in another direction.

I later chosed to work with After FX becuase I believed there were a larger sphere of developers connected to this Adobe product.



Yeah, I'm apparently older :D

I started using Fusion with Version 2.5 and didn't regret it since (after a stint with Paint and Effect, later on bought by discreet, then autodesk and turned into combustion). And I suppose in the end it's been a less expensive ride than sticking with Adobe all the time.

Cheers,
Mike

Lightwolf
07-29-2009, 06:26 AM
I later chosed to work with After FX becuase I believed there were a larger sphere of developers connected to this Adobe product.
AE always confused the heck out of me... without needing any demo people to further confuse me. Don't get me started on nested comps... ;)

Cheers,
Mike