View Full Version : Extended RLA & Extended RPF - One last try...?

03-29-2004, 04:15 PM
Just sent this to LW Technical Support - (I must be mad)

I'd appreciate any feedback from people who have experience with this format - and these issues described below:

After much experimentation - and frustration - I have discovered a serious flaw in Lightwave's Extended RLA & Extended RPF Image Filer export Plug-ins.

LW is unable to assign it's own Material ID and Object IDs to the corresponding pixels in its .rla/.rpf renders.

Instead LW assigns ID numbers above 32,000 - out of the range that After Effects can access.

This means it's impossible to key out individual surfaces in AFX using LW generated files - which is one of the main strengths of .rpf format.

The problem isn't AFX - I've successfully worked with .rpfs created in Studio max.

Works flawlessly when brought into AFX.

Incidentally, this bug is documented on page 267 of 'Creating Motion Graphics in After FX Vol 2' CMP Books DV Expert Series.

(I spent 2 days discovering the same thing - before I found the book!)

So my question- has it been fixed/improved in LW8?

Failing that, do you realise it doesn't work?

Any response appreciated

03-29-2004, 07:33 PM
It's not just you blabberlicious. I have this problem too. I use combustion and dxf+ and I have problems in both packages. It is LW, and it needs to be fixed. At first I thought it was me, But after talking to another user that knows his stuff, was told that it is a problem with the LW exporter. I would love to have this fixed as it would speed fog and DOF up a lot. Please fix this in LW8 Newtek!!!!

03-30-2004, 12:31 AM
I'm amazed at how a thing like this seems to be overlooked.

The format offers such a great solution to quick masking and post editing of rendered images.

The Depth .rla eport DOES work fine - especially when you over-sample to clean up the poor antialaising that z-depth renders inherently have.

If anyone's interested I'm would be happy to post a mini tutorial showing how it's done, and what the issue are with he bug.

It might be a 'poor man's' Depth of Field, but in a lot of situations it's a perfectly acceptable alternative to huge DOF LW renders.

Anyone else care to comment - I'll pass this thread to NT support (sfx:dry laughter...)

03-30-2004, 01:09 AM
There is another BIG bug with assigning Object and Material ID's.

When networkrendering each node assigns DIFFERENT ID's, which is absolutely ridiculous if you have 10 nodes. You can forget masking then...

This has been reported and they promised to fix it for [8], maybe even [7]...

03-30-2004, 01:29 AM
Originally posted by trick
There is another BIG bug with assigning Object and Material ID's.
This has been reported and they promised to fix it for [8], maybe even [7]...

Thanks for that, Trick.

I haven't even got that far as testing it on a network Render.... :-)

Can you confirm who said it's being fixed?

Was it NT support?

Once again, thanks to NT's reluctance to publish a 'What's Been Fixed List' - they have left it to their customers to discover things like this - one by one - on their own.

Chuck, if you are reading this - do you see what help it would have been if I'd had some sort of head's up?

It's almost cruel not to!


03-30-2004, 01:34 AM
I'm interested in reducing the jaggies blabberlicious! - (I couldn't get depth (single file) in RLA at all anyway! .. works fine with .RPF though! - odd... )

Cheers.. J

03-30-2004, 01:40 AM
when you say it works with .RPF - do you mean you can see all the Material IDs? Or the Depth Map?

Are you using DFX or AFX?

I will post a min TUT in a mo

03-30-2004, 01:58 AM
Ah, I am using DFX+ for Depth work.. DoF and Fog. It was all very simple when using 3dsMax with Combustion.. save out .RLA .. process in Combustion.. and Bobs yer uncle..

In LW however, I have fiddled about with .RLA for the best part of a day, and the best I can get is a separate depth file saved out at the same time as the .RLA - weird?

Anyway, this isn't a huge problem because .RPF seems to do the same stuff as .RLA and works as a single file - whoop. What I noticed from your thread was the better z-depth AA.. now that's cool....

Haven't ever used material IDs .. so don't know what I am missing.. things are simple in my world blabberlicious!

03-30-2004, 02:53 AM
Here's a primer - for Folks who ain't familiar...

03-30-2004, 02:54 AM
Setting it DOF in AFX

03-30-2004, 02:57 AM
The result....notice the nasty alaising

03-30-2004, 02:58 AM

03-30-2004, 03:00 AM
Material IDs - the bit that's Broken!

03-30-2004, 03:13 AM
1. Render the Depth Buffer at x2 resolution (no anti-alaising)
2. Import into AFX
3.Control Click (mac) on the X2.RLA File you just rendered, then Choose Set Proxy and the select the Original (correctly sized file).
4.Now make a Comp using the Proxied X2 file.
5. In the comp window, scale the X2 file down 50%
6. Apply 3D filters, as before.

AFX will use the Over-sampled X2.rlf file for its Depth information,which reduces the Alaising significantly.

You can render even higher if you like.

In theory, you should be able to export Over-samples Material & Object ID Buffers in the same way, so that Keyed out objects and surfaces have nice clear edges.....

So far I only made it work for Over-sampled Depth maps.

03-30-2004, 03:20 AM
Does this have something to do with RPF being made for Max, and max uses 2d filters for it's antialiasing? I thought someone said because Lightwave raytraces it's antialiasing that it can't output material Id's or something ... since antialiased pixels would have 2 material Id's (because it's antialiased) while Max's would only have 1? I culd be very, very wrong though ...

03-30-2004, 03:47 AM
..thanks for the info blabberlicious, gonna take a look this afternoon..

08-24-2007, 05:54 PM
Has any of the problems referenced in this thread been fixed in the latest versions of LW?