PDA

View Full Version : I n s t a n c i n g !



kahalany
06-26-2010, 11:59 AM
Yup. It's official. LW's the only 3d package that do not have instancing. I think that this is by far the most disturbing shortcoming of this package. It's because of that unbearable flaw that I decided to add in Carrara 8 pro to my arsenal. Even this entry level 190$ sale package has instancing! (among other many nifty things ).

Sad, Sad, Sad, NewTek.
The whole philosophy of relying on 3rd party to do the nasty work for you and having to drop our hard earned cash on those TRIVIAL additions is just lame. Sorry.

It's even pittier that one guy (Denis Pontonnier) just concept proofed an instancing solution all by himself - what does this say about you, respected team of software developers?

Just something to think about,

Royie

hrgiger
06-26-2010, 01:39 PM
Now that's not asking nicely is it?

Are you talking about modeling instancing or render time instances? CORE already does the modeling type of instancing (where changes to one object are reflected in the clones), but does not yet do render time instancing such as what happens with the plug-in HD instance which allows you to render millions, even billions of clones. I would guess once CORE rendering is further along, that they will look at bringing render time instancing.

UnCommonGrafx
06-26-2010, 02:58 PM
Actually,
LW has instancing. It works.
It's just not elegant.
Look into ffx.
Now, having said that, I'm also an owner of HDI, which came first. As well, nextGen LW already has it implemented.

This is a rather decided upon point, at this juncture.


Yup. It's official. LW's the only 3d package that do not have instancing. I think that this is by far the most disturbing shortcoming of this package. It's because of that unbearable flaw that I decided to add in Carrara 8 pro to my arsenal. Even this entry level 190$ sale package has instancing! (among other many nifty things ).

Sad, Sad, Sad, NewTek.
The whole philosophy of relying on 3rd party to do the nasty work for you and having to drop our hard earned cash on those TRIVIAL additions is just lame. Sorry.

It's even pittier that one guy (Denis Pontonnier) just concept proofed an instancing solution all by himself - what does this say about you, respected team of software developers?

Just something to think about,

Royie

Cageman
06-26-2010, 03:36 PM
While it is true that one have to fork out for HDI to get true instancing in LW, one should also take a moment and compare HDI vs other apps instancing capabilities before whining too much (just a hint). ;)

kahalany
06-26-2010, 03:39 PM
hrgiger - Agree. Not the most pleasant way to express the argument. However frustration has this thing of being uncontainable once you almost miss a deadline because of so many workarounds you implement in order to achieve something which should otherwise be quite straightforward.
Also, I'm talking mostly about render time geometry and surface instancing, not just modelling which by itself would be nice. And yeah, I tried that later in core. Let's just say it has a long way to go in terms of stability.

UnCommonGrafx - AFAIK ffx can only instance billboards and instances of itself, no custom geometry or objects. If you know of a way to implement this I would be most grateful to hear about it. As far as the implementation of instancing in core - I'm not sure how much I can argue this point outside of the official forum.

Anyway, I do think some things should be heard, however unpleasant they may be. I wish NewTek all the best in getting core up and running ASAP. But really, a decent instancing solution? I don't think I'm asking for too much.

Thanks for listening, guys.

Royie

UnCommonGrafx
06-26-2010, 04:28 PM
Go here, watch this:
ftp://ftp.newtek.com/multimedia/movies/LW_9/FiberInstance.mov

Pavlov
06-26-2010, 05:11 PM
Hi,
the fact he's not asking it nicely doesnt means he has not a point ;)
LW has not instancing, not in the meaning he is using: placing easily and rendering thousand items with no memory hit.
FFX is limited to fiber instancing so i wouldnt even mention it (beside the fact a good fiber solution should not need instancing at all).
Facts are simple: the hole is big and most 3rd part option can cover this hole just partially and, as usual, they dont cooperate (HDi is by far too slow and doesnt work with 3rd part engines, Kray solution is ok but it doesnt allow animation by now).
The lack of a powerful instancing solution is one of the things which hit LW's usability (the heaviest, if you ask me), so i keep hoping we'll get an useable "backfire" solution while we wait for Core.

Paolo

kahalany
06-26-2010, 05:13 PM
Go here, watch this:
ftp://ftp.newtek.com/multimedia/movies/LW_9/FiberInstance.mov

Thanks, UnCommonGrafx. But I watched this vid a while ago and as I was saying earlier from what I've tried this method only applicable to fiber strands. I don't think you can instance geometry this way.

Did you manage to do it yourself?

millsron
06-26-2010, 05:13 PM
Not to mention that Newtek initially marketed version 9.0+ to 9.6 as it was to include instancing. Of course they didn't deliver. I have put off the purchase of HD Instance waiting for this. I have enough of waiting for Newtek to do what they promised to do.

Ron

Hieron
06-26-2010, 05:17 PM
Hi,
(HDi is by far too slow and doesnt work with 3rd part engines, Kray solution is ok but it doesnt allow animation by now

Paolo

HDI by far too slow? Never appeared to me as such. Kray instancing doesn't work with other 3rd and native engines either I'm sure :)

It's a gap yes, but HDI seems to fill it quite nicely for me. Untill something native hits.

kahalany
06-26-2010, 05:31 PM
Hi,
The lack of a powerful instancing solution is one of the things which hit LW's usability (the heaviest, if you ask me.
Paolo

I may have been too harsh at first, (sorry about that NewTek) but that's exactly how I feel too, Pavlov. As projects become more and more complex and the clients expect a higher production value almost every other shot I work on requires an instancing solution to a certain degree.
I wish NewTek would put their money on this long awaited and deperately needed feature than dealing with color space and other tweaks which are most welcome by themselves but feel like a cosmetic glaze on a wounded flesh.

COBRASoft
06-26-2010, 07:02 PM
me wants instancing too! but i'm afraid it won't be added to 9.6 or higher. a real shame indeed.

hrgiger
06-26-2010, 07:45 PM
Not to mention that Newtek initially marketed version 9.0+ to 9.6 as it was to include instancing. Of course they didn't deliver. I have put off the purchase of HD Instance waiting for this. I have enough of waiting for Newtek to do what they promised to do.

Ron

Yes, they did although it should be known by now that listing features is not the same as making promises. Clearly those were goals when they set out to bring version 9 but in the end, the new architecture (CORE) seemed to be the better answer. Not only instancing, but also modeling in an animation environment as well as better UV tools. Newtek has made it abundantly clear that most everything said is subject to change so there should be little surprise there.

I would very much like to see render instances in CORE where we actually stand a chance to preview/render them in VPR.

archijam
06-27-2010, 12:11 AM
+1 for real render instancing.

HD I is great, but the basic functionality should be in LW.

I expect we are waiting for core instancing.

Hieron
06-27-2010, 06:44 AM
I wouldn't mind some HDI updates/improvements, Core might take a while...

Captain Obvious
06-27-2010, 08:58 AM
Recently, I ended up doing a job in modo instead of Lightwave for no other reason than the native instancing. In this particular instance (pun intended), HD Instance and Kray were not options for various reasons.

*Native* render-time instancing is absolutely crucial, and NewTek are probably aware of it.

Pavlov
06-27-2010, 10:34 AM
HDI by far too slow? Never appeared to me as such. Kray instancing doesn't work with other 3rd and native engines either I'm sure :)
It's a gap yes, but HDI seems to fill it quite nicely for me. Untill something native hits.

Hi Hieron,
yes, sadly HDi is way too slow for production, at least for vegetation tasks and similar ones Kray's instancing is by far faster, and i can also tell you the reason.
Vegetation doesnt need a precise GI solution, usually a low-quality one is enough. Building an irradiance cache on billion polys is a very slow task, and useless. Probably a bruteforce, low-ray FG solution would be much faster.
Kray allows per-surface GI method, so i can assing proper solution to vegetation surfaces. HDi cannot, and asking Fyffe it seems it's not even possible. So, if i need a good GI solution for the scene, same settings will apply to vegetation too, and this will result in too long times.
This applies to every similar case. Even if i love HDI placing tool, i really cant use it as production tool for my tasks.
BTW this may change if you instance simpler geometry.

Paolo

Hieron
06-27-2010, 01:32 PM
You can assign per object GI settings on instanced stuff. You can not alter the amount of bounces (since that is not in those options), but you can alter the amount of rays and pixel distances. So not really sure what you mean?

I use it on the instanced biig grass patches or pretty heavy poly trees. Works fine here, in production that is.

pooby
06-27-2010, 02:43 PM
While it is true that one have to fork out for HDI to get true instancing in LW, one should also take a moment and compare HDI vs other apps instancing capabilities before whining too much (just a hint).
_______________


I wouldnt include softimage and ice in that comparison, because, as great as hdi is, and incredible considering it manages to do so much in the placement arena. it can't really compete with the SI/ICE combo.
Ie, Any placement you could possibly think of.
Not only animation offsetting, but animation triggering by events or anything else you could think of.
Instances can be warped individually by the hair system and react to dynamics, wind etc.
All can be seen running in the viewports not just bounding boxes,
This list could go on.. It's very easy and intuitive to use too

Captain Obvious
06-27-2010, 03:11 PM
You can assign per object GI settings on instanced stuff. You can not alter the amount of bounces (since that is not in those options), but you can alter the amount of rays and pixel distances. So not really sure what you mean?
The problem is that you can't change the *method*. Irradiance caching is useless on highly detailed geometry. It relies on being able to interpolate samples over large areas, but with "fractalized" geometry, that is not possible. You end up getting several irradiance cache samples per pixel, and even if you turn down the number of rays the sheer size of the database will slow things down to a crawl.




I wouldnt include softimage and ice in that comparison
I would think Houdini can also do some cool stuff in this regard... But generally speaking, HD-Instance is a very straight-forward and capable solution that goes above and beyond what *most* other apps offer. That is not to say that ICE doesn't have certain... advantages. :p But HDI is still a very good tool.

pooby
06-27-2010, 03:51 PM
That's not in dispute from me. Hdi is a plugin that lightwave should be jolly grateful for, Like f-prime. Those 2 are the classiest plugins for lw IMO.

Something can be truly excellent but still look a bit dowdy when compared to SI/ICE

Hieron
06-27-2010, 06:09 PM
hmm will try Kray again then too, to check how that works out...

edit: Doesn't really work better than native for me. Native does need to have the GI settings low on the foliage, but then it is quite fast. Sort of like I did in:
http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=101604&highlight=autograss

Brute forcing it with low rays makes it jitter even worse than foliage already does.

Real quick test included. 40 seconds GI, cached to 16 MB file. Renders in 16 seconds. This works quite well for me, not with animation ofcourse.

85948


(tried this with bigger scenes as well ofcourse)

Pavlov
06-28-2010, 02:53 AM
Well.. i think i tried HDI in a lot of production works where we needed HDi's placement tools: everytime we were forced to renounce because rendering took forever.
Maybe it's ok until you render some trees, but try situations with thin grasses on large areas and good luck, if you want GI on instances.
I attach few examples (but i could show quite a lot) where we gave up on HDI, because Kray was so much faster. But even if we hadnt Kray, we would have used other options (compositing, at that point) because closing a 4000 pixel pic took way too long.

Paolo

Soth
06-28-2010, 02:55 AM
This is messiah or original one, I am not sure...

245 billion polygons!

http://www.wurp.net/images/arnold_245_billion_polys.jpg

close up:
http://www.wurp.net/images/arnold_245_billion_polys_closeup.jpg

Hieron
06-28-2010, 03:04 AM
I can get Kray to be fast, but always with lost contact shadows....(tree trunk on ground) Perhaps I should make a simple test scene and ask for input from its forums to see how much it can be improved.

One could debate how important contact shadows are though, when a sun light is placed also. You got the intersection of a tree with the ground nicely covered with grass :)

Either way, I do agree HDI gets very slow (but not much different than just cloning them) unless the main scene GI settings are pushed down *alot*. And then every object that needs good GI needs to have its object GI settings increased. That works decent here.

Will try Kray as well... but from testing just on this, it crashed alot on me.. Also not sure if it can cope with the 2kmx2km scene we got atm.

(most recent Kray version I think, 64 bit LW, win)

Pavlov
06-28-2010, 03:56 AM
maybe you use wrong settings: contact shadows in Kray are perfect ;)just use high GI settings in Kray, but put a Kray surface shader on leaves and trunk. Into its options, set Photon mapping and turn OFF Cache irradiance. Then Turn ON Control FG rays and set something like min 20 max 100 threeshold 0.001.
So you will use a brutefgorce FG solution on these surfaces; number of rays can be higher or lower depending on quality you need. This way, the overall solutuion will be the one you set in kray, but these surfaces will render with a different sub-engine.
Also consider that in vegetation rendering, translucency is crucial, and LW has a fake one (only from direct lights). Kray will compute translucency for diffuse light (i.e. SKY) with a much better result.
If you set properly these things, there's no quality/speed comparison with anything else in LW arena. For all other specific Kray question, please refer to Kray's forum, we're going OT here ;)

Paolo

archijam
06-28-2010, 06:24 AM
Pavlov - no, no - don't stop ;)

Pavlov
06-28-2010, 07:34 AM
eheh nope, we're losing the target of the discussion. Beside structural changes, coming with CORE, the amount of breath of current LW depends mostly on this.
Generally, complexity-management tools are the most needed thing, if we face some more time of 9.x usage.
Instancing first, but also sub-pixel displacement, are the deepest and largest holes in comparison with every other 3d app.

Paolo

Hieron
06-28-2010, 10:48 AM
nvm