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Thread: Bump to normal

  1. #1
    Lightwave rebel Pensart's Avatar
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    Bump to normal

    Is it possible to convert a bumpmap or heightmap to a normalmap using nodes?
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  2. #2
    2 ways...

    Like this \/, or using DP's 'Bump to Normal' node. This won't get you as nice results as if you'd used a dedicated normal map making tool, but it works...
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  3. #3
    Lightwave rebel Pensart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tobian View Post
    2 ways...

    Like this \/, or using DP's 'Bump to Normal' node. This won't get you as nice results as if you'd used a dedicated normal map making tool, but it works...
    Thanks Tobian, do u mean like truebump or the nvidia plugin for photoshop? Btw, what is the best approach/ software for creating normal maps? I won't mind spending "some" bucks on it.
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  4. #4
    I can't say what the best solution is really, I haven't extensively tested it, but the Nvidia plugin works fine, so long as you have an 'elevation' (greyscale height) map, with some tweaking, just you need to flip the Y (green) to make it work properly with LW... I think The fancier plugins are for when you don't have a height map, and you're extracting based on a photo or the like.

  5. #5
    TrueArt Support
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    Tobian, you should normalize vector after subtracting it.
    You don't know where normal will be used by user, and whether node where it's connected will normalize by itself or not.
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  6. #6
    TrueArt Support
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pensart View Post
    Thanks Tobian, do u mean like truebump or the nvidia plugin for photoshop? Btw, what is the best approach/ software for creating normal maps? I won't mind spending "some" bucks on it.
    If you have many LW objects to bake normals (for game industry), you can use BatchBakingCamera http://www.trueart.eu together with TrueArt's Node Library > Tools > Bump To Normal (it has two inputs, DP's has one IIRC).
    But of course you need some source of bumps, usually procedural textures or gray scale images, in the first place, to bake them..
    After that procedural texture can be used inside of game engine.
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  7. #7
    Lightwave rebel Pensart's Avatar
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    I think i'm going to invest some time in comparing those nice softwares. The nodes work approach works but like Tobian said, the results are poor in some cases.
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  8. #8
    well it's a known gotcha that lw bump is sucky at times.. converting lw bump to normal yields the exact same results...

    and yes good call about normalizing the output sensei :-) simplest way to add normal maps is to add them, using vector add, then normalize the output. :-)

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