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silviotoledo
05-10-2012, 11:52 AM
Exceeded 128 Points in Strand

What does this mean? I have not more than 128 points in the guides. What's wrong?

Greenlaw
05-10-2012, 01:12 PM
I haven't seen this error but I'm curious, where did it appear for you? In Strand Modeler (Modeler,) Strand Editor (Layout), during render, ...?

FWIW, I've been very immersed in FiberFX at work for the past few weeks. Right now I'm mostly busy with Strand Modeler and Strand Tool in Modeler and these tools have been very reliable. I haven't used Strand Editor in Layout much--I like the idea of Layout's Brush tool but I still feel like I have more control over hairstyles using the Modeler FFX tools. That said, I hope the equivalent of the Brush tool will appear in Modeler someday.

Rendering FiberFX in 11.0.1 has been very good too--yesterday I did my first FFX radiosity tests with a character and it looks great. There are a few remaining issues with the extra buffers but nothing we can't deal with for now.

G.

silviotoledo
05-10-2012, 02:14 PM
Once I don't like too much the FFX modeling tools I use to do the guides with splines in modeler.

Latter I use a plugin ( hurleyworks.com ) to convert splines to 2 point polys.

Without plugins, I reduce the curve interpolation in general options and do far extrude to the splines.I delete the far extruded points and I get the 2point polys.

Now rename with the FFX prefix Fiber_ NAME and Fiber_NAME_Fixed.

It use to work, except when I have a more complex amount of points.

The message says I have more than 128 but I don't. What is happen? please try to add FFX to these guides.

Greenlaw
05-10-2012, 02:51 PM
I'll take a look at your file tonight. :)

Are you using Sherpa (from Hurley)? This plug-in works well for me when bringing hair guides in from Modo as well as with Lightwave Modeler curves.

I'm mainly using Modeler's Strand Modeler though...I feel I have a lot of control with it, unless I need very long and fairly straight hair, in which case I tend to fall back on the old rail-cloned splines technique as described on the Worley website.

Strand Modeler seems especially well suited for shorter hairstyles and fur. However, I have used it successfully in the past for long or complicated hairstyles if I break the hairstyle up in to multiple elements and assemble it later, either in Modeler or Layout. Editing bits and pieces becomes much more controllable and manageable this way.

A few tips for using Strand Modeler: Be sure to save a settings file before clicking Okay and generating the guides. This is important if you plan to go back and do more editing. (Even if you aren't planning it, you most likely will.) Also, keep the control guides that show up in their own layer; Strand Modeler lets you reload these control guides with the original influence modes applied.

One neat Strand Modeler feature which I only started using last week is the Bias Map. You can get Strand Modeler to output this data as a vMap which can be used in FiberFX to comb surface based fibers without the use of guide chains. To use it, you only need to do a fast 'sloppy' job of combing guides in Strand Modeler just to get the Bias Map, and then blow away the actual guides because you don't need them--all you're interested in is direction. Then, in FiberFX you just select the Bias Map from Bias Vmap, and dial in how much of this you want to influence the surface based fibers. It's usually a balancing act between this and Gravity if you're using that feature. For example, if you want to use the Bias Map at 100%, you'll probably need to set Gravity to 0% to get the expected results. I've started using this technique for the shorter 'fill' layer of hair that goes under the layer with the longer locks of hair.

I also use Photoshop to paint Density and Scale (length) maps for FiberFX. This works well if you need very tight control over the entire scalp. For example, the Scale map may be used to keep hairline and back longer but the sideburns shorter and more stubbly.

Strand Tool in Modeler works very well too but I find it's easier to use if I display only the patch of hair guides I want to edit and hide the rest before switching it on. If you enable Strand Tool for all guides, it can get overwhelming. Alternatively, you can select the guides you want to edit first, this way they will be visibly selected when you enable the tool--works if you're in a real hurry and are only interested in a couple of guides.

Anyway, I know that's a lot more info than you were asking for but FWIW, I'm finding most of the FFX tools to be working as expected here.

G.

Greenlaw
05-10-2012, 02:55 PM
I just took a peek at your file. Yeah, for this style I'd probably use the rail cloning technique.

Anyway, I will definitely check it out after work today and let you know what happens.

G.

Kryslin
05-11-2012, 11:06 PM
I've had this error before, under 9.6 ... I think it had to do with having 2 point poly chains that hadn't been made with the FiberFX tools... (I ran into it trying to go from Sasquatch to FFX). I rebuilt the guide curves and fed them into strand maker, and everything turned out OK... (or as OK as anything with FiberFX gets...)

I also have a couple of questions...
I was poking around in the "T" panels, and noticed an input called "Polygon Area" in the gradient drop down. How is it computed, and from what, and why is it locked to a range of 0..1?

Also, how does one get good coverage on a large surface with FiberFX (like an animal's pelt) without gobbling up memory? I haven't been having too much luck, especially since FFX tends to not want to let me put a second layer of fibers onto a mesh... I tried to emulate Proton's teddy bear fur tutorial, and haven't had much success, and upping density works, but my render nodes don't have 24GB available to them...

Greenlaw
05-12-2012, 11:44 AM
I've had this error before, under 9.6 ...I rebuilt the guide curves and fed them into strand maker...
That's interesting. Have you tried Sherpa (http://hurleyworks.com/products/lightwave/modeler_plugins.html) with FiberFX? I've been using it because Strand Maker doesn't creates a root point which is useful for ClothFX sims. Also, Sherpa lets you set a subdivision level and unlike most of the other third party guide chain tools it runs in x64 Modeler.


I was poking around in the "T" panels, and noticed an input called "Polygon Area" in the gradient drop down. How is it computed, and from what, and why is it locked to a range of 0..1?
Wow, I don't know how I missed that. If this is what I think it it, I could have used it earlier this week for mixing the effect of a Bias Vmap. I'm going to try the option this afternoon and I will let you know how it goes. BTW, 0 to 1 is probably percentage of the surface area, and 1 would be the maximum coverage. If that's the case, it wouldn't make sense to go higher than 1.0. That's just a guess because I obviously haven't used it yet--I'll check later to confirm.


Also, how does one get good coverage on a large surface with FiberFX (like an animal's pelt) without gobbling up memory?
Try setting Cluster to 2 and set a very high Cluster Radius--this spreads the fibers around a wider area. Also, it looks better because it look more random (prevents the 'grid' look.) If you do this, you should be able to use a lower density setting. Note: This also makes FiberFX much faster than if you used Relax to randomize fiber placement.

Depending on how you apply the fibers, if you're using an extra wide radius, you may want to limit surface edge 'creep' by using a mask in Density (like for the scalp area of a human.)

Important note: If you have a high density setting, Layout may slow down to a crawl. You can speed things up again by temporarily disabling any active surface based layers. In Lightwave 10 you only needed to uncheck Draw, but in 11.0.1 you need to uncheck On (I think this is a bug.) Don't worry, you won't lose your settings, but you do need to remember to check it on again before rendering locally. BTW, if you close the scene and reopen it, it comes back On by default so long as you don't explicitly Deactivate the layer. I think any unchecked layers will switch on automatically when submitted for network rendering but I haven't tested for this yet.


I haven't been having too much luck, especially since FFX tends to not want to let me put a second layer of fibers onto a mesh
That's strange. FWIW, I've been using multiple layers with great success, typically for mixing surface based fibers and long hair. Try the above though...maybe it will lower the memory size for you.

G.

Kryslin
05-12-2012, 01:18 PM
Thanks for your replies. I'll have to give your suggestions a try and see what results...

I was trying to follow Proton's teddy bear tutorial on a furred character, and ran into a problem with FFX that I'm going to fog - I've a mesh where I can't assign a second layer of FFX to it, even with skelegons and rigging ripped out (and no 1-2 pt polys in the mesh).

I haven't tried Sherpa, I'll take a look at it and give it a go. I tend to use strand maker for FFX, and a very old curves to poly chain plugin for Sasquatch. (Side note - does the 64bit version have to be renamed to Sherpa64.p instead of dll, or will it still work...?)

I was thinking of altering density based on polygon area, but until I figure out what it's measured in, and why it's locked to a range of 0..1, it's of little use.

Greenlaw
05-12-2012, 03:51 PM
I'm not sure why the x64 version is a .dll--this is the first plug-in I've seen with that extension. It loads as a plug-in though without changing the extension though. Curiously, the x32 version is .p.

silviotoledo
05-12-2012, 05:54 PM
Thanks Greenlaw! Need a little time before back doing the tests. Will try the techs explainned here soon.

silviotoledo
05-13-2012, 11:47 AM
stand maker works when I use the splines, but creates too low poly guides. I want guides with more points for colision purposes and hair simulation.

trying to have guides with more subdivisions out of FFX is crashing that error again.

:(

jasonwestmas
05-13-2012, 12:56 PM
Yes, unfortunately I've always had to rely on LWCad to subdivide my splines. There is most likely a tool out there that subdivides splines without LWCad.

To be honest, that error you are seeing has something to do with the cleanness of your splines and the 2 point poly guides ime. For FiberFX you will need to check to make sure you only have 1 point polys at the roots of the poly chains and that they aren't scattered about elsewhere. If they are simply delete the guides and all 1 point polygons and make sure there isn't some weird geometry happening anywhere before you run your splines through the FFX "poly chain maker" again.

Greenlaw
05-13-2012, 01:33 PM
That's why I use Sherpa, which lets you set the sub-division level to whatever you like. It also makes an explicit root point, which is useful for anchoring the guides for dynamics.

silviotoledo
05-13-2012, 07:34 PM
The sherpa 2 point polys version of my splines works well with FFX when I set an small amount of divisions but does not work when there's more divisions.

Did a complete search and did not find trash data. ! point poly at the root and the rest is 2 point poly. What's the problem with my guide model?

May someone verify?

jasonwestmas
05-13-2012, 08:56 PM
would have to see the file. Also, sometimes it may take trashing the Fiber Filter modifier and re-importing your settings.

Greenlaw
05-14-2012, 12:49 AM
The sherpa 2 point polys version of my splines works well with FFX when I set an small amount of divisions but does not work when there's more divisions.
That's very strange.

FWIW, I did a quick test for another user here yesterday that had guides created using Sherpa with 60 segments and the scene rendered just fine. IMO, that number of segments is unusually high but it was necessary in this case.

Normally, I keep the segments as low as possible and let FiberFX do its own smoothing during render. At work, I think my guide chains only have about four to six segments for longest locks, and these were created using FiberFX Strand Modeler (not Sherpa in this case.) I'm going to need guides that are much longer later this week but I'm not expecting any problems. At least, I didn't run into problems with longer/more sub-divided guides in early tests. (Except for the motion vector buffer problem described elsewhere.) I'll write here if I have problems this week.

Sorry, I know that's not particularly helpful info--just confirming that long segments for FiberFX guides is working here.

G.

john_the_blind
05-14-2012, 10:29 AM
hello everyone,

i have the same problem a few days ago.
Problem appear when i've edited the 2 point poly chain by hand. I mean select some poly, expand connect, copy past etc...suddenly, the 128 points problem comes in...
after scaning my mod, i realise that the root poly missing on some 2 point poly chain (certainly due to copy/past etc...)
i've try to add some by hand but with no result...
The only solution i've found is to work with spline (curve) to create all the guide. These curve are placed in one layer. then hit strand maker button in setup tab. Modeler create the 2 point poly chain in other layer. Use this layer to create fiber in layout.
When you have to modify your guide, always use the curve in first layer, never the ploychain. To apply your modif, go to second layer, delete all the polychain. Then return in first layer, and re-hit strand maker button. The new poly chain is created in the same second layer. Switch to layout. Tada, guide for fiber are updated.

This method isn't very simple, but with it, you can simply change the shape of the curve. it's mor easy than modifying the 2 poiny poly chain...

Loc

ps : sorry for my english...i m french user ;)

MAUROCOR
05-14-2012, 01:29 PM
This method isn't very simple



It is better to say: _Fiber FX is not very simple. To say the least!:devil:

john_the_blind
05-15-2012, 09:41 AM
eheh :cry:

Greenlaw
05-15-2012, 11:15 AM
FWIW, I'm finding FiberFX pretty easy to work with. But I think the 'ease' factor depends on which parts of FiberFX your using. For example, while I really like the idea of editing fibers in Layout, it's definitely been problematic in its current version and it can make working with other aspects of using FiberFX a bit frustrating. For now I avoid using Layout's Edit Guides tool to make FFX guides.

Frankly, I wish these combing tools were available in Modeler instead because FiberFX has been far more reliable with guides generated in Modeler (using Strand Modeler and converted curves) and from other modeling programs, especially if you're going to be animating the fibers. I think almost everything else about FiberFX is pretty easy to use though once you establish a workflow.

I think surface based FiberFX behaves well too, and you can add a lot of control by using Bias Vmaps and other mapping techniques. I'm typically combining layers of fibers grown from surfaces and externally modeled guides for characters here at work, and it's been working out great so far.

G.

Celshader
05-15-2012, 11:27 AM
Exceeded 128 Points in Strand

What does this mean? I have not more than 128 points in the guides. What's wrong?

I ran into that at work last month. It turned out that some of the hair guides were missing the 1-point polygons at their base that define the "root" of the hair. Without that 1-point polygon, FiberFX does not know where the hair guide "starts."

Fixing those hair guides solved the problem.

Greenlaw
05-15-2012, 11:40 AM
Good to know! Thanks for the tip.

G.

jasonwestmas
05-15-2012, 11:59 AM
yep, that is possible too. Make sure you run your splines through the hair guide generator again and it is possible that some of the splines got their points merged together by accident. That may cause a conflict when you create the poly chains from the spline guides.

silviotoledo
05-18-2012, 05:55 PM
Thanks Jennifer!

but the 1 point polys are there, arent they?

May you look at the file I shared at anterior page?

Kryslin
05-19-2012, 05:25 PM
FWIW, I'm finding FiberFX pretty easy to work with. But I think the 'ease' factor depends on which parts of FiberFX your using. For example, while I really like the idea of editing fibers in Layout, it's definitely been problematic in its current version and it can make working with other aspects of using FiberFX a bit frustrating. For now I avoid using Layout's Edit Guides tool to make FFX guides.

Frankly, I wish these combing tools were available in Modeler instead because FiberFX has been far more reliable with guides generated in Modeler (using Strand Modeler and converted curves) and from other modeling programs, especially if you're going to be animating the fibers. I think almost everything else about FiberFX is pretty easy to use though once you establish a workflow.

I think surface based FiberFX behaves well too, and you can add a lot of control by using Bias Vmaps and other mapping techniques. I'm typically combining layers of fibers grown from surfaces and externally modeled guides for characters here at work, and it's been working out great so far.

G.

After struggling and fighting with FiberFX for nearly the last month, I went back to working with what I've got that works well, and that's Sasquatch.

It's a shame, really, because FFX has so much potential, it's just a bit too unstable and finicky. I've got characters created under LW 9.6.1 that I can't layer instances of fur on, and adequate coverage (ie, no underlying skin showing) appears to require loads of RAM that my render nodes don't have (I'm a hobbyist - While it would be nice to have a bunch of i7 LGA2011 nodes with 32GB each, I don't have that kind of cash...)

I guess the best way to describe my experience of the last month, is the following : FFX, the native solution - the natives are hostile, and possibly cannibalistic as well.

I'd like to figure out why FFX only partially works here, but I'm at a loss for ideas. I've killed configs, removed plugins I don't use or that crash under 9.6,10, 10.1, and 11... About 1/3rd of my crashes with FFX take me straight to the desktop...