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View Full Version : FBX import in LW 10 no work?



Mr Rid
07-12-2011, 09:43 PM
All I get is "unknown scene file format"(?).

Greenlaw
07-12-2011, 10:13 PM
How do you mean?

FWIW, Valkyrie's FBX I/O in 10.1 has been working out great for me. I'm using it to move data between LW, Maya, Motion Builder and Fusion, mainly rigs and mesh, animation data, and cameras.

G.

Greenlaw
07-12-2011, 10:14 PM
BTW, FBX support has gotten a complete makeover for 10.1. Lots of options now.

Mr Rid
07-13-2011, 12:14 AM
Am in LW 10.0, where I guess FBX import doesnt work at all (?).

Greenlaw
07-13-2011, 12:49 AM
That's strange; I'm almost sure I had FBX IO working with 10.0. That said, 10.1's FBX support has been much better than any previous version I've used.

Just curious but where did the FBX come from? If you like I can try importing it here just to see if it works on a different system.

G.

Mr Rid
07-13-2011, 01:05 AM
I thought FBX just comes with LW. Where else might it come from? And dont you have work tomorrow? :)

Greenlaw
07-13-2011, 01:36 AM
I'm confused. Are you importing an FBX exported from LW back into LW?

And I'm a grown up now dad! I can stay up as late as I want!

Mr Rid
07-13-2011, 01:50 AM
Am not exporting anything from LW. Any FBX I try to load in LW 10, says 'unknown scene file format.'

I'm tellin' Momma Austin you were up all night chatting with those bratty Lightwave friends of yours. That Ridlen's a bad influence.

Greenlaw
07-13-2011, 02:54 AM
Just tried it in 10.0 here. The results were a little funky compared to 10.1 but it did open the FBX file. What happens if you do Load From Scene instead of Load Scene?

I get same weird results in 10.0 either way. FBX loads fine with 10.1 though, either way. Suggest you try the beta.

G.

Edit: When using 10.1, select bake rotations in the FBX import panel. This corrections the rotation order in the scene for LW and keeps Valkyrie from adding the motion modifer. More important for rigged animation but it also helps for backwards compatibility with 9.6.

RebelHill
07-13-2011, 06:39 AM
You are jsut using "load scene" and choosing the fbx, right?

If its not working at all you could always pump the thing through ADs fbx converter (converting the fbx to fbx again), and try a different fbx version. 2011 should be sound, but 2006 is HIGHLY compatible.

I think Ive had one or 2 errant such files that I did this with.

Mr Rid
07-14-2011, 01:15 AM
For some reason, I am always having a weird problem that no one else does.

Yes, am 'loading' the FBX like a scene.

Digging in the vault... I have an fbxlw.p, and fbxlw70, 75, 80, 82 .. none of them have a 2006 stamp. Suggestion? Not finding anything newer online.

stiff paper
07-14-2011, 09:44 AM
FBX Converter (scroll down some for the links):

http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/servlet/pc/item?id=10775855&siteID=123112

Greenlaw
07-14-2011, 11:31 AM
Hey DR, send me a sample FBX file you're having trouble with. I'll see if I can open it here.

G.

Mr Rid
07-14-2011, 03:06 PM
Will PM, Greenlaw.


FBX Converter (scroll down some for the links):

http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/servlet/pc/item?id=10775855&siteID=123112

Thanks, I looked here before but thought I needed something specifically for LW. Will use the general Windows version.

Rove
07-23-2011, 12:41 PM
Funny, my LW v10.0 just crashes while trying to load any FBX, no matter what version the FBX is.

I checked whether the plugin (valkyrie.p) was installed and it was. Mind boggling. Headache coming up!

Mr Rid
08-08-2011, 09:18 PM
I recall reading there is some older FBX plug that is suppose to work well(?). Am trying to load FBX in LW8 just to see. The importer says 'select the FBX take' but there are no takes listed in the 'Take Name' dropdown... what take? If I click OK it just says import failed. I found a PDF instruction for the lw75 FBX plug but it doesnt explain anything.

colkai
08-09-2011, 03:58 AM
Last FBX plugin I used which worked nice was fbxLw80.p but can't recall where I got it from. That used to work nice with my version of Motionbuilder (5.5) whereas the 'native' one always fubar'd in 9.6 anyways. (I don't use LW10).
Think it was because it expected you to use MB7 or such.

RebelHill
08-09-2011, 04:57 AM
You can get the lw80 version of the plugin from the autodesk site... but really, its not as good or versatile as the native fbx tools in 10.1

You still having problems with getting this file to import?? surely not?

If so can you just post it?

lardbros
08-09-2011, 05:48 AM
Hey Mr. Rid... I've also had some issues with FBX during the beta period, but exporting from 3ds Max Design as version 2010 seemed to fix whatever the issue was. Even still, had issues with UV mapped textures not having the correct UV applied in the texture panel. Weird!

I'd be up for trying your FBX to see if it works in Max or my Lightwave.

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 12:42 PM
Hey Mr. Rid,

Sorry for taking so long to check out your file; I meant to do this a while ago but got totally distracted. Anyway, I just tried it in LW 10.1 and the FBX did import with textures and rig. I checked the morphs and, while it lists 284 endomorphs, I'm not sure they are actually working. Will check this out later today.

The rig was imported as bones but I think they need to be imported as Joints because they're not pointing in the expected directions. I'll try this later today too.

Surfaces look as good as you might expect: textures applied to Color, Spec, and Bump, with smoothing enabled. Exclude from VStack is on, which you'll want to turn off if you want to use the new Skin Material in LW 10.1.

Hope this is helpful Again, my apologies for taking so long. Is there anything you want me to check specifically? BTW, I can send the converted file back to you after a couple of more tests.

G.

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 01:15 PM
Another update: imported the FBX into LW 10.1 Layout as joints wth baked rotation, scale turned off (1:1). Rig looks correct now but the camera is off axis. I don't think you intended to import the camera anyway. (Camera axis might have been off before in my first import. Sorry I wasn't paying attention to it.)

Opened the converted .lwo object in LW 10.1 Modeler. Rotational axis if off. Might explain why camera axis is off. I'll take a closer look at this tonight.

Examined the morph targets in Modeler. I haven't checked all 284 morphs but the dozen or so I clicked on in the Vertex Maps list do appear to be working. I'm assuming that they all work and that Layout was just taking a long time updating the slider settings.

G.

Edit: I'll continue testing this at home tonight. Let me know if there's anything you want me to check.

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 01:22 PM
Just now check deformations in Layout. Seems to be working.

Checked for weight maps in Modeler and there does appear to be weights. For example, in Weight view selecting Head clearly shows a proper head weight map. However, when I selected the Jaw weight, there didn't appear to be any weight values in it. So, maybe some weights converted and some didn't? I don't know for certain since I can't compare this to the model in its original 3D program.

G.

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 01:30 PM
I took a quick look at rotation axis issue in Layout. Model is off axis in local space but corrected in Layout by a rotated 'Root' parent null. Curiously, the camera is also parented to the Root null. So, I think this means the camera is actually correct after you unparent it (with Parent in Place off) but the mesh and rig is off-axis. I used to see something like this back in 9.6, but haven't seen it with my Motion Builder and Maya FBX files since I started using LW 10.x. There must be some differences between this FBX file and the FBX files exported from MB and Maya.

G.

RebelHill
08-09-2011, 02:10 PM
the mesh and rig is off-axis.

Ive seen this with 10.1

Its basically the same as the 90,0,-90 fix, but on a scene wide scale (objects n all)... Cant say for 100% sure but I think it happens on FBXs that come from packages that use a different translational co-ord system (rather than just rotation)... basically, softwares where Y is not up, requiring the entire scene space to be rotated (which in LW ofc means rotating the space in both layout and modeller).

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 02:43 PM
...I think it happens on FBXs that come from packages that use a different translational co-ord system (rather than just rotation)...
Ah, that makes sense! I never thought about translation possibly being different.

Thanks for the info.

G.

lardbros
08-09-2011, 02:53 PM
is the issue with rotation modifiers still apparent? Where importing an FBX from 3ds max, and then choosing the object after importing into Layout, moving it causes it to flip out of it's axis. Then the only way to get it back is to then remove the modifier!

This happened during beta testing, so not sure it's still there, I haven't checked!

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 03:04 PM
You can now import with baked rotations which bypasses the need for modifier. In other words if you choose this option, rotation *should* be correct and LW 10.1 doesn't apply the modifier. I haven't really tested this since I only import the FBX motion data directly to my Lightwave rigs (Merge Only Motion Envelopes option). I have used this feature for static objects and cameras exported from Maya and Motion builder though, and it seems to work correctly.

G.

lardbros
08-09-2011, 03:16 PM
Oh, okay... must test again, didn't know this had been added.

Generally though, and sorry to go off topic, what is the reason for NOT wanting to bake the rotations? Wouldn't you want to do this every time? Especially if the modifier causes issues.

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 03:42 PM
Oh, okay... must test again, didn't know this had been added.

Generally though, and sorry to go off topic, what is the reason for NOT wanting to bake the rotations? Wouldn't you want to do this every time? Especially if the modifier causes issues.

That's a good question. FWIW, the motion modifier does seem to work if you stay in LW 10.x, but I did run into a problem when I had to open the .lws in LW 9.6.x, which of course doesn't have the modifer plug-in available. (The plug-in might work in 9.6 but I never tried that.) Ever since they added Bake Rotations, I never bothered with the motion modifier.

G.

RebelHill
08-09-2011, 03:42 PM
choosing the bake rotations option works pretty much flawlessly... and you shouldnt need to know its there, as its the default option when importing fbx. As for why the motionmodifier is still in there, cos it was added to LW and now its stuck... I cant see any reason to use it ever... but thats just the legacy of NT taking a step backwards in fbx for 10 and only getting it properly fixed in 10.1 (even then it was a close shave, lol).

lardbros
08-09-2011, 04:04 PM
Ah, okay... thanks guys :D Glad it wasn't just me being stupid :D

So... what would happen if you were to:

Export from 3ds max...
Bring into Lightwave...
Make changes...
Then export back out to FBX to bring into 3ds max.

Would this require the motion modifier, so as not to ruin the rotations for when it's brought back into 3ds max, or does their plugin sort out the rotations on import?

I don't know enough about this stuff... there are sooooo many import options :D

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 05:10 PM
Hmm...I don't know. Why not try it and see what happens. (Be sure to wear goggles.) :)

What sort of changes were you thinking of making in Lightwave and bringing back into Max? Would .mdd be more appropriate? Just curious.

RebelHill
08-09-2011, 05:36 PM
Should be fine... at least I can take stuff from LW to MB, back to LW, back to MB... ad infinitum.

LW_Will
08-09-2011, 06:49 PM
Should be fine... at least I can take stuff from LW to MB, back to LW, back to MB... ad infinitum.

Okay... fair enough, RH, but I do have this question; Why would you want to go from LW to MB and back and forth?

I look at is like this. You have a character you are developing in Lightwave, and you quickly get a semi-finished character done. Then, you hand it off to the character animator in Motion Builder. He develops the motion, with a crude but adequate character, while you continue with the refining modeling, the texturing, lighting, etc. Then you export the motion from MB, via FBX, to Lightwave for final render.

I fail to see a reason, other than "I want to", you need to go LW to MB back to LW and back to MB again.

Maybe I'm just stupid. Please enlighten me. ;-)

funk
08-09-2011, 08:43 PM
I fail to see a reason, other than "I want to", you need to go LW to MB back to LW and back to MB again.

Maybe I'm just stupid. Please enlighten me. ;-)

Dont you need to go back to LW to tweak and render the animation?
NOTE: I'm not an animator so feel free to ignore me.

Greenlaw
08-09-2011, 09:34 PM
My workflow: Rig in Lightwave, export FBX to Motion Builder (or Maya if I need to fix weights for Motion Builder,) retarget my mocap and edit the motion as necessary, then export an FBX for Lightwave.

However, what I import back into Lightwave is not the entire FBX data. In Layout I select my rig and then import only the motion data from the FBX using Load From Scene with the Merge Only Motion Envelopes option enabled. Works like a charm! This way I get to use my original rig with exactly the shading and deformations intended and not a version that's been 'filtered' in its travels between multiple applications.

Here's something to keep in mind when exporting an FBX for Lightwave:

Make sure only one 'take' is exported in the MB FBX. Lightwave gets confused if there is more than one take. For those who don't know, a 'take' is a single version of an animation in a Motion Builder scene, and you can create as many takes as you need. Needless to say, this is an awesome feature when editing mocap in MB, but it makes Lightwave gag when it sees more than one version of the animation.

This was brought up in another thread recently but I thought it was worth repeating here.

G.

lino.grandi
08-10-2011, 03:56 AM
My workflow: Rig in Lightwave, export FBX to Motion Builder (or Maya if I need to fix weights for Motion Builder,) retarget my mocap and edit the motion as necessary, then export an FBX for Lightwave.

However, what I import back into Lightwave is not the entire FBX data. In Layout I select my rig and then import only the motion data from the FBX using Load From Scene with the Merge Only Motion Envelopes option enabled. Works like a charm! This way I get to use my original rig with exactly the shading and deformations intended and not a version that's been 'filtered' in its travels between multiple applications.



That's absolutely one right workflow. :thumbsup:

RebelHill
08-10-2011, 04:29 AM
Why would you want to go from LW to MB and back and forth?

Generally you wouldnt, my point was that the FBX toolset for both import and export are in line with one another to allow this thing to be done... you can do more than just one round trip of the data without screwing yourself, or, if you do discover something needs changing in some way, you dont find yourself painted into a corner where you need to go back to an earlier version to make those changes.

lardbros
08-10-2011, 07:08 AM
Why would you want to go from LW to MB and back and forth?



I don't have any specific need for this now, but sometimes while you're trying to get around a major problem in one bit of software, it's nice to know you can go back and forth without screwing things up :D

I like it when things work!

LW_Will
08-11-2011, 12:52 AM
Generally you wouldnt, my point was that the FBX toolset for both import and export are in line with one another to allow this thing to be done... you can do more than just one round trip of the data without screwing yourself, or, if you do discover something needs changing in some way, you dont find yourself painted into a corner where you need to go back to an earlier version to make those changes.

Ah HA! Then I was right... sort of. ;-)

Yes, of course you are correct RH. It makes sense to make the function work both ways even if it won't be used both ways.

Now, I won't yell at my browser when the subject comes up again. ;-D

LW_Will
08-11-2011, 01:01 AM
My workflow: Rig in Lightwave, export FBX to Motion Builder, retarget my mocap and edit the motion as necessary, then export an FBX for Lightwave.

This is my workflow as well, GL. The only exception to this is that I START with Daz Studio. (Yeah, baby.) Very nice.



Make sure only one 'take' is exported in the MB FBX. Lightwave gets confused if there is more than one take. For those who don't know, a 'take' is a single version of an animation in a Motion Builder scene, and you can create as many takes as you need. Needless to say, this is an awesome feature when editing mocap in MB, but it makes Lightwave gag when it sees more than one version of the animation.

The solution to the multi-takes is to, when you are ready to move to LW, paste all the takes to one. This allows the flexibility of MB with the Track single-ness for Lightwave.

And now, with the new KINECT that I just picked up (AWSOME!) I'll soon making some interesting mocap!

Greenlaw
08-11-2011, 08:41 AM
The solution to the multi-takes is to, when you are ready to move to LW, paste all the takes to one. This allows the flexibility of MB with the Track single-ness for Lightwave.
I think you may have misunderstood. The point of the takes in MB is that I can experiment with versions of animations without losing old versions, and then compare them against each other at anytime. Then, when I'm done, I can choose the take I like for export in Lightwave. I do not need to export all the takes to Lightwave.

For Lightwave FBX import to be more complete, they should allow you to choose which take you want when importing the FBX. Currently you need to make that choice when you export from MB (or Maya.) To be honest, this is not a big deal so long as you're aware of how it works but there you go.

G.

Mr Rid
08-12-2011, 11:27 PM
Thanks for taking time to mess with the import Dennis. I can get FBX to import from Daz, but animation rotations are wonky. Am surprised the morphs come across at all, but not all of them do.

The really odd thing is that some morphs show up automatically applied but they do not appear listed in Morph Mixer(?). If I load only the FBX exported obj (just loading the object and not the whole FBX as a scene) then the invisible morphs are completely absent. So, I cant comprehend how the FBX is somehow applying invisible morphs that do not apply to the obj by itself(?!).

EDIT: The invisible morphs are listed in Morph Mixer, they were just named something weird.

A few morphs refuse to carry over at all from Daz. Have no clue.

DeanoC
08-19-2011, 09:41 AM
One things I've found is that with 10.1, its best not to use any special LW FBX options, a number of programs exported FBX with specific 'fixes' for LW, however with 10.1 as the new importer is closer to MotionBuilder FBX spec, use that option if available or just the default rather than any specific LW one.

HTH

LW_Will
08-19-2011, 09:54 PM
FBX from DazStudio, I kept to the MoBu (for Motion Builder? Is that not cool?!) settings, not the "Lightwave" settings. It seems to me that the versions of LWO and LWS they are attempting are for are old, like 9.0... Poser 7 had an format for, I think, ver 8.5.

FBX and MoBu are the targets. The importer for FBX in Lightwave is set to work with MoBu. Hence, FBX should be in MoBu format. (hows that for a well diced path of reasoning)

Also, I have my Kinect and I've started working with Brekel's AH-MAZING mocap for Kinect! It goes into MoBu IN REAL TIME! It is aces!

Check out this realtime test at; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yXP7ZDkyCfI&feature=mfu_in_order&list=UL

I'm going to go play... er, um... research some more. Yeah, research...

LW_Will
08-19-2011, 09:56 PM
I think you may have misunderstood. The point of the takes in MB is that I can experiment with versions of animations without losing old versions, and then compare them against each other at anytime. Then, when I'm done, I can choose the take I like for export in Lightwave. I do not need to export all the takes to Lightwave.

For Lightwave FBX import to be more complete, they should allow you to choose which take you want when importing the FBX. Currently you need to make that choice when you export from MB (or Maya.) To be honest, this is not a big deal so long as you're aware of how it works but there you go.

G.

Right. You just want the choice to come after the import, not before. ;) I don't think that code is available through the FBX SDK.

Is there any other program which gives you that choice? Not sure...

LW_Will
08-19-2011, 09:59 PM
One things I've found is that with 10.1, its best not to use any special LW FBX options, a number of programs exported FBX with specific 'fixes' for LW, however with 10.1 as the new importer is closer to MotionBuilder FBX spec, use that option if available or just the default rather than any specific LW one.

HTH

ditto. and rather succinctly put, I might add.

Greenlaw
08-20-2011, 01:11 AM
Is there any other program which gives you that choice? Not sure...
I don't know, my only experience with FBX has been with MB, Lightwave, Animeeple, Fusion, Houdini and Maya; I'm mainly using MB, Lightwave and Maya right now. I know if you import FBX to MB, it does allow you to choose which takes to bring in by checking them on a list; same as when exporting as mentioned earlier. Now that you mention it, I'm not sure about the others. Maybe Houdini? I remember it had a lot of options but it's been awhile since I last used it. I'll check later.

G.

Mr Rid
08-27-2011, 10:51 PM
FBX from DazStudio, I kept to the MoBu ...

Finally, that works! Although I tried the FBX export beta for Daz 4 and its got new issues in LW. I bug reported it, and really hope they dont break whats working in v3.

But I encountered a new, odd problem exporting Daz weights. Normally, a character and its associated clothing both have the same weights and the rig deforms both appropriately. But I just exported a clothing mesh that technically has the same weight name as the character, but Lightwave insists on seeing two different weights, and the rig wont deform both meshes even though they have the exact same weight names. Likewise, if I put both meshes in the same layer in Modeler it sees two sets of weights with the exact same names... how is this possible? :stumped: 97824- as you scroll thru the weights, you should see two of each. Scroll down to "lfoot, lfoot".

Am too tired at the moment to think how to fix. Renaming about a hundred weights with all new names is too much of a pain, and then the bones have to be re-associated. :stumped:

Its similar to the problem when loading an OBJ and LW insists on loading the same image over and over for each surface using the same image. Normally you cant load the same image more than once into LW if you wanted to. :stumped:

Mr Rid
08-27-2011, 11:55 PM
Well, fixing with DrainBGweight. A most useful plugin.

corny
08-28-2011, 01:41 AM
Hi.. i try import 3ds file but cannot import. But if i using 9.6..no pro..any help?? Thank

Mr Rid
08-28-2011, 03:22 PM
I am able to import 3ds into LW10.

The Wizzard
05-23-2014, 11:24 AM
I finally did a tutorial on: "Lightwave to MotionBuilder and Back again "
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eju1edD7k0A

I hope it helps some of you :)

lardbros
05-24-2014, 09:26 AM
Thanks for taking the time to do this!
Very nice to have such useful and short videos... Well edited and very clear! Hope there's more where this came from!

The Wizzard
05-25-2014, 04:27 PM
Thanks for taking the time to do this!
Very nice to have such useful and short videos... Well edited and very clear! Hope there's more where this came from!

Thanks, I'm uploading the next tutorial now. "Lightwave to MotionBuilder to ENDORPHIN and Back again"

Link to follow, When it's uploaded :)

The Wizzard
05-25-2014, 04:48 PM
I've uploaded the next tutorial...
"Lightwave to MotionBuilder to ENDORPHIN and Back again"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSkDM-l38hM

Enjoy :)

lardbros
05-26-2014, 05:53 AM
Cool... I know someone else this will interest! Will pass on the link!

Thanks!