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View Full Version : Is it possible to animate FiberFX Pixel Filter?



MysteryMonkey
09-24-2009, 06:55 PM
Hi All,

I'm certain that I'm not the first to try using FiberFX Pixel Filter so I have to ask, has anyone had any luck actually putting it on an object and animating it? Jeez, it seems like this should be an easier operation than it is . . . I made a simple biped figure (we'll call it a Sasquatch) and covered it with hair/fur from head to toe. I then added bones. I then activated the bones. Then I moved an arm and did a frame render. As you may already know the hair stayed where it was originally, but the underlying arm geometry moved outside of the fur/hair. That's no good and not very practical . . . When I first saw FiberFX I thought great, LW has done it right, but now I'm rather disappointed. I know its probably operator error on my part, but has anyone been able to animate FiberFX Pixel Filter hair/fur successfully?

If so how? Use 9.6 (Mac) the order I did it in was model first, add FiberFX Pixel Filter second and then third add bones and activate them. Do you 1st model the figure, 2nd add bones in layout, 3rd the add FiberFX Pixel Filter or what?

Any solutions out there or link to where I can see the process in action.

Thanks,

Kim

MysteryMonkey
09-24-2009, 07:22 PM
OK, So I think I may have solved my own question. At least for the model covered completely with hair/fur this just worked.

1. Model figure
2. Add bones and activate them in Layout
3. Object>Properties>Subdivision Order>Last

I move the arm after doing that and the hair/fur stayed with it.

Anyone have anything else to add that would be helpful?

Thanks

SplineGod
09-24-2009, 08:47 PM
Get sasquatch. Somewehre, somehow, sometime, fiberfx is more then likely going to crap out on you in a big way.

Mr Rid
09-24-2009, 09:30 PM
Yeah I found FFX too glitchy and incomplete for photoreal work. But Sas can still get you there.

MysteryMonkey
09-26-2009, 08:22 PM
Thanks for the advice Larry and Mr Rid. I would switch to Sasquatch if I could, but it just isn't possible for now. Who knows, maybe Newtek will get the bugs worked out. I hope so.

It would be nice if you could select a group of polys to make a Surface that hair/fur could be applied to (like a material can) instead of cutting them and pasting them back into a different layer . . . It would also be nice if the Pixel Filter would cast a shadow on other objects or make a reflection on a glossy surface . . . As far as I can tell FiberFX Pixel Filter doesn't do either one of those unless I have missed something when rendering . . . Can they create shadows or reflections anyone?

Kim

********
The work must transcend the rhetoric.

=> http://www.KimLindaberry.com <=

SplineGod
09-26-2009, 11:26 PM
I would also try using saslite instead.

MysteryMonkey
09-27-2009, 08:34 PM
I would also try using saslite instead.

Is Saslite still available for 9.6? I had no idea.

SplineGod
09-28-2009, 03:30 AM
Yes, still there :)

MysteryMonkey
09-28-2009, 05:28 AM
Yes, still there :)

Hum, I guess that I'll have to check the disk because it didn't show up in Layout after the install. Is it like in a "Goodies" folder or something? Since it wasn't there I kind of assumed it had been discontinued for some reason. After reading your previous message I went back and looked for it. It should be in Layout, select an object and then object> properties> deform> add displacements. Right? Its not there for me.

Dodgy
09-28-2009, 06:59 AM
FFx will make shadows, check the shadows tab in the panel, and of course make sure you have shadows on for your lights. I find Interpolate a lot faster but less accurate than point sample.

For reflections, you have to turn on Reflections in the FFX panel, and use Ray traced reflections.

As for saslite, are you on a mac? It only appears on some mac versions as it hasn't been compiled for the latest versions of mac os I think.

MysteryMonkey
09-28-2009, 07:50 AM
As for saslite, are you on a mac? It only appears on some mac versions as it hasn't been compiled for the latest versions of mac os I think.

Thanks Dodgy, I check out the shadows and reflections for FFX when i get home tonight. Yes, I am version 9.6 on Mac so I guess I'm out of luck? Can a previous Saslite pulgin be inserted? Probably not though I'm guessing.

Panikos
09-28-2009, 08:19 AM
Remember to use Classic Camera for Sasquatch. It doesnt work with any other Lens distortions.

Jockomo
09-28-2009, 12:05 PM
This is really disappointing. I was hoping to use fiberFX in our next production.
I'm getting some nice looking results and really like using the guide hair tools.

But it wouldn't surprise me to see a new tool fail in actual use. So typical of NewTek to build a tool and release it, when it can't be trusted for production.

Thanks for the advice guys, probably saved me a ton of headaches.

SplineGod
09-28-2009, 01:16 PM
What disappointing is that Fiberfx was already being developed for how long as fiber factory before NT picked it up? Then it was being developed further by NT until released last year. Now its been almost another year and it still doesnt work right. Now with the focus on Core, how long before it gets some attention and is fixed? At this point its not even a new tool...

MysteryMonkey
09-28-2009, 09:33 PM
As for saslite, are you on a mac? It only appears on some mac versions as it hasn't been compiled for the latest versions of mac os I think.

After rereading this I have to ask, what version? I've got OSX 10.5.8. Very recent but not the newest release. Is anyone with 10.5.8 able to use Saslite in Lightwave 9.6?

Kim

The work must transcend the rhetoric.

=> http://www.KimLindaberry.com <=

erikals
09-30-2009, 01:01 PM
What disappointing is that Fiberfx was already being developed for how long as fiber factory before NT picked it up? Then it was being developed further by NT until released last year. Now its been almost another year and it still doesnt work right. Now with the focus on Core, how long before it gets some attention and is fixed? At this point its not even a new tool...

9.6.1 which is up shortly will fix it.
i mean, if not, then there's little point in releasing 9.6.1 if you ask me.

that said, i don't understand how FFX can go bananas as some claim,
after all, you can set FFX to use polys instead, how can that go wrong?

Mr Rid
09-30-2009, 03:10 PM
...
That said, i don't understand how ffx can go bananas as some claim,
after all, you can set ffx to use polys instead, how can that go wrong?

77884

erikals
09-30-2009, 03:35 PM
first,...> LOL :P

second,...> um, like how?

MysteryMonkey
09-30-2009, 03:50 PM
i don't understand how FFX can go bananas as some claim, after all, you can set FFX to use polys instead, how can that go wrong?

Erikals,

Are you saying that I can make an object in modeler, And then designate a group of selected polygons to be a unique surface from the rest of the object polygons, and then in layout pick that selection (surface) and apply FFX Pixel Filter to it? As far as I can tell it can't be done that way. It seems that you have to cut and paste the polys into a different layer. Of course that isn't very practical. You can get tears in the surface when rendering (and even when not rendering)

Kim

erikals
09-30-2009, 04:11 PM
i was thinking in the lines of this leaves tutorial,
http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=89494&highlight=Leaves

Mr Rid
09-30-2009, 04:12 PM
first,...> LOL :P

second,...> um, like how?

http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=95830&highlight=fiberfx post #24 was the most frustrating thing broken in Strand Modeler. Apparently there were aspects of FFX that worked better in previous builds.

In production, working on complex scenes, I easily spend 40% of my time troubleshooting weird problems in LW. Features that may work in themselves, wont work in combination. Then I hit limitation walls 90% of the time- at that point the compositor fudges it, we cross fingers and hope the client doesnt comment further, or we use another 3D app.

In my work, FFX has so far proven 100% useless. The editing tools are great, but I encounter endless rendering glitches... then for some bizzarro reason, NT came up with entirely different editing tools for the Strand Modeler that are way more tedious and awkward to deal with, and with no 'Undo'! At least you get one measly undo in Layout.

I was able to get useful leaves out of the Strand Modeler. The most ridiculous thing about it though, is each time you click 'ok' to export geometry it closes and dumps everything you just set up. You have to be certain to save settings right before 'ok', then load them again before you continue to work... but the settings dont always load back correctly for some odd reason. That alone throws a serious wrench in the proceedings.

erikals
09-30-2009, 04:34 PM
hm, ok, didn't know about that 'flow' problem....
NT sure has some work to do...

MysteryMonkey
09-30-2009, 05:26 PM
Are you saying that I can make an object in modeler, And then designate a group of selected polygons to be a unique surface from the rest of the object polygons, and then in layout pick that selection (surface) and apply FFX Pixel Filter to it?

OK, so I have gone back and I was finally able to get FFX Pixel Filter to work using a selected surface of an object (without it being cut and pasted into a different layer). I swear that I tried doing that several times and each time I tried I wasn't able to select the surface. Its working for me now though. I don't think that I was doing anything differently just now that I had tried before. I was using the same model. For whatever reason, be it operator error or a hiccup it is now acting the way I was thinking that it should do. (In all honesty it was probably operator error.) So hopefully it will continue to work for what I need, and I will remember how I did what i did

Kim

erikals
10-01-2009, 10:51 AM
hm, i see some 9.6.1 info has been posted...
http://www.newtek.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=185

MysteryMonkey
10-01-2009, 11:21 AM
hm, i see some 9.6.1 info has been posted...
http://www.newtek.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=185

That link must only work for beta testers or something because I do, "not have sufficient privileges to access this page."

erikals
10-01-2009, 11:37 AM
Chuck's response... ;)
http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?p=932124#post932124

Dodgy
10-01-2009, 06:29 PM
Something I've been playing around with, just to see if I can get non moire fur...

erikals
10-01-2009, 10:20 PM
looks good, a trick to solve that is probably to render 200% resolution for then to scale down.

TeZzy
10-03-2009, 07:45 AM
here is something FFX nearly stuffed me over during production where rendering close ups or double resolution. Doing small renders for approval for print.....then did a render at 200 percent to see how long it takes, and to my surprise the fibers wasn't the same proportion...it was like the characters fur was thinning in the larger renders. I would like to believe it's not user error...because sasquatch didn't do that

MysteryMonkey
10-03-2009, 08:04 AM
looks good, a trick to solve that is probably to render 200% resolution for then to scale down.

After reading TeZzy's comments I started thinking, just how practical is it to double the render size of an animation to then reduce the size back down to what you really need? Doesn't doubling the render size quadruple the render time? That could be a real deal breaker if you're on a deadline.

erikals
10-03-2009, 11:35 AM
...it really depends on your scene.

if the original scene has really slow AA, then it can be an idea to double the rendersize.
if the AA in your original scene is fast however, then yes, it can quadruple the rendertime.

((as a general rule))

Mr Rid
10-03-2009, 01:40 PM
After reading TeZzy's comments I started thinking, just how practical is it to double the render size of an animation to then reduce the size back down to what you really need? ...

Its not. Just another Goldbergian maneuver in the 'Beat the Programmer' game.

TeZzy
10-04-2009, 01:02 AM
render time wasn't the issue in my case. Since I had to render a a3 size print. It was the result(AA or not) that I wanted. One would think that a render at 200%(when scaled back down to 100%) would look pretty much identical to the render that was done at 100%.

Rendering at double size is a way to get around certain issues....but with FFX it created more issues. FFX has potential but the bugs that plague it at the moment makes it not useable for production imo.

erikals
10-04-2009, 03:41 AM
shoot, it really has TONS of bugs... http://forums.cgsociety.org/images/smilies/surprised.gif

Mr Rid
10-04-2009, 02:28 PM
Before FFX, I dont know who was complaining about a lack of integrated fur. It seems like a waste of development time since it does not replace Sas, and who knows when it will ever be properly completed and production reliable. I dont know why Shave & Haircut support was dropped or how difficult it would be to reinstate, instead of re-inventing the wheel. Would rather have seen the effort spent elsewhere, like in decent dynamics and voxels where we are instead now left only with expensive alternatives like Syflex, RealFlow or to move into Autodesk world.

I particularly wish someone would pick up dev on this crowd simulator someone began years ago, as a LW feature or plug- http://www.kolve.com/thesis/thesis.htm A simpler, low cost alternative to Massive could really competitively turn heads as a feature the AD apps dont have. BTW, Bugz exports still work in LW, but it remains a useless novelty without a way to import scenes into it.

TeZzy
10-04-2009, 02:58 PM
shoot, it really has TONS of bugs... http://forums.cgsociety.org/images/smilies/surprised.gif

haha....did you try it for yourself?

yea, I feel that development could have gone even further in the rigging and CA department. It's been stated that the code can only go so far. But there are people who have pushed it further and for free

erikals
10-04-2009, 04:58 PM
I dont know why Shave & Haircut support was dropped or how difficult it would be to reinstate, instead of re-inventing the wheel....had to do with SDK limits, i think Shave/Haircut is kinda hyped though...


Would rather have seen the effort spent elsewhere, like in decent dynamics and voxels where we are instead now left only with expensive alternatives like Syflex, RealFlow or to move into Autodesk world....Blender actually has nice RBD and Cloth, maybe smoke too, remains to be seen, haven't seen high-res smoke yet...


I particularly wish someone would pick up dev on this crowd simulator someone began years ago, as a LW feature or plug- http://www.kolve.com/thesis/thesis.htm A simpler, low cost alternative to Massive could really competitively turn heads as a feature the AD apps dont have. BTW, Bugz exports still work in LW, but it remains a useless novelty without a way to import scenes into it....solved! (uh! sorta,.. maybe...) http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?p=933138#post933138

SplineGod
10-04-2009, 05:14 PM
I recall that Joe Alter got pissed off at Newtek and completely dropped support for Shave and a haircut.
Whatever complaits I may have had about Saslite or Sasquatch immedicately went away after trying to use FFX in production.
I also agree that a lot more could have been done and am impressed with the things Ive seen pixtrix, dpont and others do for free or otherwise.

Hieron
10-04-2009, 05:31 PM
http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?p=933138#post933138[/url]

haha nice way of importing scenes there :P
I didn't know of that tool though, looks handy!

erikals
10-05-2009, 12:29 AM
it is "the" way to go about it... http://forums.cgsociety.org/images/smilies/wise.gif
get ready, cauz that is the new way of going about things, "goZ" is hyped.

MysteryMonkey
10-15-2009, 10:23 AM
Yeah I found FFX too glitchy and incomplete for photoreal work. But Sas can still get you there.

Mr Rid,

Well I really see what you and Larry (SplineGod) were referring to now. After working my way through several of the original problems I was having getting it to do the basic things I wanted it to do I just did this test. This was all one complete render so the settings didn't change between the time when the figure had FFX Fur and the time when it looks all tattered and scruffy. . . All I did was have it walk forward along the Z axis and then turned it around off camera using the Graph Editor and go back to where it began. The FFX Fur disappears when the figure turns around (well most of it does) anyway. I think that attached movie pretty much says it all.

erikals
10-15-2009, 01:20 PM
LOL, thanks, was funny :p

Let's cross fingers NT opens the LW9.6.1 section soon.

MysteryMonkey
10-15-2009, 02:11 PM
LOL, thanks, was funny :p Let's cross fingers NT opens the LW9.6.1 section soon.

It was suggested to me that after the figure turns around and as it walks back across the field of vision that it be chased by a pack of marauding scissors. :D I I think that's a pretty funny idea and I may do that.

I'm hoping that 9.6.1 will be a fix for this kind of behavior. I guess we'll see.

Kim

erikals
10-15-2009, 02:22 PM
LOL, two good laughs in a row here... :D
(agreed, "marauding scissors" is an excellent idea ;) )

Dodgy
10-15-2009, 03:04 PM
Mr Rid,
All I did was have it walk forward along the Z axis and then turned it around off camera using the Graph Editor and go back to where it began. The FFX Fur disappears when the figure turns around (well most of it does) anyway. I think that attached movie pretty much says it all.


Post the scene to [email protected], so we can get it fixed....

MysteryMonkey
10-15-2009, 03:37 PM
Post the scene to [email protected], so we can get it fixed....

Done!

MysteryMonkey
10-15-2009, 03:41 PM
LOL, two good laughs in a row here... :D
(agreed, "marauding scissors" is an excellent idea ;) )

Well actually they suggested a pair of scissors and I thought a marauding pack would visually be much better (and funnier) Just watch. I'll try to recreate it with a pack of scissors and it just won't happen the same way a second time, but its worth a try. :hey:

Mr Rid
10-15-2009, 06:47 PM
Mostly what I see of LW dynamics and FFX are people doing these goofy little tests with a furry ball or something. Threads like 'When Hairy Met LW' are frustrating where everyone is oohing and ahhing over examples that are meaningless in their simplicity. It's one thing to follow personal whimsy and make a fuzzy ball or simple figure move around a little, but it's an entirely different animal when you try to apply something like FFX to a very specific production situation with a well-paying client with high photoreal expectation.

Recently we were required to make a photoreal bird that would stand up to extreme closeup. Early experiments with FFX were a joke. And a couple of different rigs were also not up to snuff. Shave and Haircut wound up being used in Maya instead.

The lack of control, and tools that are incomplete, is so endlessly frustrating about LW. Of course, I want to use the app that I know so well and prove how cool LW is, but I do not dare rely on LW for very challenging VFX tasks. I just shake my head at development like FFX.

Most people aspire to cutesy, cartoony, charactery stuff as the end all be all of CG. LW's limited tools are ok for cartoony. But bids on more photoreal challenges always make me nervous about handling in LW, and lately I look more often to other apps with more control. Too often I bang my head on LW's low ceiling, barely squeeze an adequate render out by the skin of my teeth, then rely on 2D to fudge it the rest of the way and just hope the client does not comment further.

erikals
10-15-2009, 07:02 PM
one thing to note, you have to, or at least in Sas, adjust the hair in post.
you will e.g. never get the right levels/ levels of black if you don't adjust it in post.
(that actually was kinda annoying in King Kong, too little reflection and washed out blacks made the character looked washed out) (talking fur that is)

MysteryMonkey
10-15-2009, 07:36 PM
. . . Threads like 'When Hairy Met LW' are frustrating where everyone is oohing and ahhing over examples that are meaningless in their simplicity. It's one thing to follow personal whimsy and make a fuzzy ball or simple figure move around a little, but it's an entirely different animal when you try to apply something like FFX to a very specific production situation with a well-paying client with high photoreal expectation. . .

I'm in complete agreement. My test was (as you say) a simple figure moving around a little and that is why I was so surprised and disappointed when I wasn't able to get even 20 seconds (more like 12 really) of FFX to work properly. I can even imagine how much it probably frustrates someone like you, that does the caliber of work you do, to see FFX fall short of its potential.

erikals
10-16-2009, 03:23 AM
ok, LW9.6.1 beta has started,
http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=102900

geo_n
10-18-2009, 09:50 AM
I particularly wish someone would pick up dev on this crowd simulator someone began years ago, as a LW feature or plug- http://www.kolve.com/thesis/thesis.htm A simpler, low cost alternative to Massive could really competitively turn heads as a feature the AD apps dont have. BTW, Bugz exports still work in LW, but it remains a useless novelty without a way to import scenes into it.

Max has a crowd simulator since character studio 4(max 9 I believe). I only used it recently after giving up on massive, that old linux version of massive was killing me mentally. Max crowd is not even comparable to bugs. We scrapped using massive and used the built in crowd sim of max.
http://www.character-studio.net/tutorial_8_working_with_crowd_animation.htm

And dynamics in rayfire...:thumbsup:
Hairtrix for hair/fur :thumbsup:. Fumefx, vray, :thumbsup:
The plugins of pushbutton approach for max seems nothing to complain about. Work fast go home early.:beerchug:
These developers need to be convinced to make them for newtek especially core.

Cohen
10-18-2009, 12:14 PM
lol, MysteryMonkey, your guy didn't know he was in for a haircut, did he? But getting serious, it seems the culling of your fibers is what is not being properly updated. Try turning off the fade and angle parameters by setting them to zero percent. And if all else fails, the volumetric render is great, and does not have the kinds of problems associated with the pixel rasterizer.

I've noticed that the pixel rasterizer can't draw tiny fibers, where volumetric renderer has no problem computing micro sized fibers. I just stay away from the the pixel renderer altogether, (for the most part), as it can fail or give strange results under certain situations.

MysteryMonkey
10-18-2009, 12:55 PM
lol, . . Try turning off the fade and angle parameters by setting them to zero percent . . .

Thanks for the advice. I'm willing to try your suggestion but I can't seem to locate either "Fade" or "Angle" in any of my Layout tool pallets. Where might I find them? I've looked under Image Processing, Render Globals, Light Properties, etc. Where are they?

Cohen
10-18-2009, 12:59 PM
Its in your FFX panel, under the Etc tab.

Cohen
10-18-2009, 01:00 PM
Im just guessing, from what I saw, that this is what is causing the problem. Definetely needs to be fixed, but you can work around it for now.

MysteryMonkey
10-18-2009, 01:06 PM
Im just guessing, from what I saw, that this is what is causing the problem. Definetely needs to be fixed, but you can work around it for now.


Well they were set to 0% from the beginning so that isn't it. But thanks for trying to come up with a solution.

Cohen
10-18-2009, 01:06 PM
oh, and you will want to check the "World" check box. This ensures that the geometry cache is properly being updated. What it does is it generates the fibers in world space, so no matter if the object is being deformed in a heirchay, say it is being animated such by bones, and being translated by some master null, then this option must be on.

Im not sure if anyone told you that yet, but need to check that.

Cohen
10-18-2009, 01:15 PM
I'm interested if thats whats causing the problem. Try generating the fibers in world space by checking the "world" check box. Then do one test render before the guy goes off frame, then another when he comes back into frame. Let us know if it works. :)

MysteryMonkey
10-18-2009, 02:43 PM
I'm interested if thats whats causing the problem. Try generating the fibers in world space by checking the "world" check box. Then do one test render before the guy goes off frame, then another when he comes back into frame. Let us know if it works. :)

I shifted the camera to capture the frames as the figure turns about. It still didn't change anything when I set my controls as you suggested. I rendered 2 before and 2 after the turn. As you can see it is at the point the figure turns that everything goes wacky.

Cohen
10-18-2009, 04:04 PM
yeah, I'm out of ideas. :'(

Except perhaps opting to use the volumetric renderer. Of course render times will sky rocket...

Dodgy
10-18-2009, 06:16 PM
It appears just turning an object with FFX on twists the hair into a mess. I've fogged it.

MysteryMonkey
10-18-2009, 08:31 PM
. . . I've fogged it.

Fogged it? What do you mean?

Dodgy
10-18-2009, 08:54 PM
Fog bugs is the bug tracker NT uses, so to 'fog it', means to report it as a bug.

MysteryMonkey
10-18-2009, 09:12 PM
Fog bugs is the bug tracker NT uses, so to 'fog it', means to report it as a bug.

I see, well I did send the video of the problem to lw-bugs as you suggested earlier.

Dodgy
10-19-2009, 12:59 AM
Cool :)