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View Full Version : Suggestion to keep LW from inducing insanity...



illusory
09-21-2006, 09:12 PM
The way particles and hypervoxels are set up to work with is just maddening.
Tweak a setting, wait 5 minutes, tweak another setting, wait another 5 minutes. touch anything while you are waiting, and you get a scary white screen, and sometimes a crash. And I have 4G memory and 4 (logical) cpus.

Doesn't the 'calculate' button mean anything? It would be very nice to have the option to tweak SEVERAL settings, and have LW wait till you TELL it to calculate the new particles.

This is just crazy-making.

NJ

Celshader
09-22-2006, 12:01 AM
The way particles and hypervoxels are set up to work with is just maddening.
Tweak a setting, wait 5 minutes, tweak another setting, wait another 5 minutes. touch anything while you are waiting, and you get a scary white screen, and sometimes a crash. And I have 4G memory and 4 (logical) cpus.

Doesn't the 'calculate' button mean anything? It would be very nice to have the option to tweak SEVERAL settings, and have LW wait till you TELL it to calculate the new particles.

This is just crazy-making.

NJ

What I do is go into the "Options" panel of the FX_Browser and set the UpdateMode to "user." That way I can tweak several ParticleFX settings, and it only updates when I actually hit the FX_Start button.

Thomas M.
09-22-2006, 01:01 AM
Hoped they fixed it in 9, but unfortunately not. Suffered from it yesterday again. Accidentaly hit a key or hit the mouse button and there'll be no feedback anymore on the screen and LW shuts down till the whole calculation is finished. No chance to quit FX calculations. Silly!

meshpig
09-22-2006, 01:50 AM
... ctrl/key (mac) stops the calculation. No problem!

:)

Thomas M.
09-22-2006, 03:26 AM
Well, it doesn't on a PC if you hit any other key before.

meshpig
09-22-2006, 04:00 AM
You'll get a status report either way.

37115

:)

Celshader
09-22-2006, 12:16 PM
Well, it doesn't on a PC if you hit any other key before.

I've sometimes hit the ESC key by mistake before remembering to hit the CTRL key, but my calculations still canceled with no problems after I hit the CTRL key.

As long as you have the "Dynamics Calculating" window appear during a calculation, you're golden. For the "Dynamics Calculating" window to appear, the FX_Browser panel must be open. Otherwise the "Dynamics Calculating" window will not appear.

As long as that window appears, LightWave will refresh its display on every frame of calculation. This means that even if the display turns white, you just have to wait for one frame of calcuation to pass before LightWave will respect the CTRL key again.

This has worked without problems on my PC and other PCs that I've used since 8.5.

illusory
09-22-2006, 05:41 PM
Thanks, Celshader, I've been working out of the properties panel and Hypervoxels panel -- didn't know about the FX_browser. Will try that with particle set-up and see if it helps.

Just tried your method using saved particle motion files, and every single thing I do seems to be painfully slow (not like before, but then I'm not updating particles), even with the motion files, so something is still updating too much. Have to turn the particles completely off to get even a moderately decent response. This is ok for camera tweaking in a broad way, but....seems like the whole thing could be coded more efficiently, but what do I know...

Anybody know what settings to use for a Quadro FX 1500 Nvidia card, in case special settings would help for some of this?

thanks,
NJ

Celshader
09-22-2006, 05:46 PM
Thanks, Celshader, I've been working out of the properties panel and Hypervoxels panel -- didn't know about the FX_browser. Will try that with particle set-up and see if it helps.

Hey, for what it's worth, there's an alternate to hitting FX_Start after changing the UpdateMode from "auto" to "user." If you change it from "user" back to "auto," it will force the particles to refresh without hitting FX_Start (though if you're far enough along in the particle animation, it'll probably take 4-5 minutes to update). I myself prefer leaving the UpdateMode set to "user" and hitting FX_Start, but use what you like best.

Another possible speed-up -- try increasing the Resolution setting in the FX_Browser's "Option" panel. The default is 100mm. Increasing this value speeds up the calculations at the cost of accuracy. Decreasing this value can make calculations more accurate, at the cost of speed.

stevecullum
09-22-2006, 06:02 PM
Another possible speed-up -- try increasing the Resolution setting in the FX_Browser's "Option" panel. The default is 100mm. Increasing this value speeds up the calculations at the cost of accuracy. Decreasing this value can make calculations more accurate, at the cost of speed.

This is a golden setting and is often forgotten about. I like to model to real world scales, so when I do a volcano or something, its generally 2km tall. You definately do not need resolution down to 100mm on a scene thats at that scale. 100m works great! - Adjust the setting to suit your scene scales.

toby
09-22-2006, 06:27 PM
This is a golden setting and is often forgotten about.
Forgotten - or not known at all! After 5 years... well, I haven't done particles *that* often... FX_Browser from now on! Thanks Cel!

illusory
09-23-2006, 02:29 AM
Well. These seem like some real good ideas here, but...I tried using the fx start button, on the easiest emitter of the 4 I have going, and, instead of taking 5 minutes to auto-update, it stopped at 70 % (after a looong time) and hung the computer (even after ctl). Tried it 3 times, same each time.

Too bad, i kind of liked the dynamic update screen. Lw is really getting on my last nerve these days. :(

thanks anyway. Any other ideas?

I liked what SteveCullum said about the resolution setting, but didn't mess with it because it seems ok for my current scene

stevecullum
09-23-2006, 05:54 AM
With multiple emitter setups, dont try and calculate all together. Do one at time, when you get the results you like save the data and if the other emitters need that data to work, eg nozzle=parent, then it will perform massively better than having lots going all at once ;)

Phil
09-23-2006, 11:11 AM
LW's dynamics implementation still seems fragile. I really would have hoped that they would have fixed the Ctrl issues by now. *mutter* It's been broken like this since they first integrated them.

illusory
09-23-2006, 10:24 PM
Steve, I was doing one at a time with the fx browser. As I said, i began with the simplest effect. It choked at 70%, 3x in a row. I was better off doing things on 'auto'. Guess I'll try activating that and see what happens...

thanks,
NJ

meshpig
09-24-2006, 12:34 AM
Illusory

Have you tried cutting back the birthrate etc.?

-Keep the particle limit and particle lifespan down to begin with and/or go back to object properties/dynamics and attach the emitters there... FX-browser is the inherited tool. Might help to isolate the problem.

M

illusory
09-24-2006, 08:01 PM
well no, i'm not cutting down the birthrate -- it's not that bad, and i've gone through lots of agonizing tweaks to get this right. My original post was about how it took 5 minutes to update with every tweak. After using fx browser, this seems positively swift!

Maybe the best is to turn off the updating in fx browser, then turn it back to auto as celshader mentioned, and then go back to object properties...

Or...do the effects in DFX+ !