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Thread: Exporting animation from DAZ 3D - do I need the "Pro" version for this? ...

  1. #1
    A.K.A "The Silver Fox" Gungho3D's Avatar
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    Exporting animation from DAZ 3D - do I need the "Pro" version for this? ...

    There's heaps of helpful posts on DAZ here on this forum, and I've gotten as far as exporting a figure and importing it into LW using latest currently downloadable DAZ install ...

    ... however, even with the "Animations" checkbox ticked in DAZ, when exporting to either .fbx or .bvh, no go: nothing actually animates in LW.

    Do I need a "Pro" version of DAZ for that to work? ... or for some component of DAZ to be paid for?

    Any advice gratefully received ...

  2. #2
    Curmudgeon in Training Ma3rk's Avatar
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    Your best luck is probably going to be with FBX. Unfortunately, decent documentation on export settings is hard to find so it's sort of a trial & error game. But to answer your question, no you shouldn't need anything special or extra. I believe the free version pretty much is the Pro version. Daz has adopted the biz plan that George Eastman used for Kodak; give them the camera, sell them the film.

    Most of what I've been doing with Daz lately has just been with static exports of assets. With the FBX you get a bone heirarchy, but I won't want to try & animate with it. I just do minor tweeks. I know I've exported a short animated test sometime ago but probably got it to work by accident.

    I'm going to be off line for a week or so in the morning so can't really give you much help beyond this for now. There'll be others chiming in though no doubt.
    "Never be a cat in a cartoon. Never." Chief Wiggum

  3. #3
    A.K.A "The Silver Fox" Gungho3D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ma3rk View Post
    Your best luck is probably going to be with FBX ...
    Hey thanks Ma3rk - as I was saying I have exported (with the "Animation" checkbox ticked) both .fbx as well as .bvh, but there is zero, nada, by way of any movement of skletons/bones in LW once I've imported from either format ...

    Ah well, hoping another guru can shed some light on what I'm not doing / doing wrong

  4. #4
    A.K.A "The Silver Fox" Gungho3D's Avatar
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    Ok so here's what's shakin':

    DAZ is not exporting anything animated via its aniMate plugin - it will make it move, whatever, but a look at the installed plugins (under DAZ Help menu) shows a link leading to a paid plugin. I'm guessing this means a pay-to-export anything using aniMate motion … ?

    However, animating a figure pose-to-pose does "work". Yep, the moves and interpolated pose-to-pose movement is exported all right … along with the mess of a doubled-up bone structure I think Prometheus mentioned in one of his posts

    For .fbx:
    - Deleting the additional bones is a first step
    - Also, there are stacks of insane endomorphs literally killing the base mesh
    - After you get rid of the above two items, for the .fbx import only about "a third of the movement" seems to show up in LW

    If you take the mesh imported via .fbx and delete all of the bones and disable endomorphs
    - export the same pose-to-pose anim from DAZ to .bvh
    - import that and attach to your mesh
    - presto - you will have an end result "fairly close" to what you might have expected

    It seems that DAZ exports weight maps (at least with .fbx), and so bending elbows and knees is not totally bizzare
    Last edited by Gungho3D; 01-31-2019 at 05:55 AM.

  5. #5
    RETROGRADER prometheus's Avatar
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    I have never purchased any animate pro plugin, I use the free daz 4,9 pro, and that came with animate lite.
    So there is some animate blocks that should work.

    What you do need to understand, you need to bake the animate blocks to studio keyframes before you can export to fbx which contains that animation.

  6. #6
    A.K.A "The Silver Fox" Gungho3D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prometheus View Post
    I have never purchased any animate pro plugin, I use the free daz 4,9 pro, and that came with animate lite.
    So there is some animate blocks that should work.

    What you do need to understand, you need to bake the animate blocks to studio keyframes before you can export to fbx which contains that animation.
    Ok that sounds really helpful - I'll need to put it through its paces a bit later and see how I go. Thanks.

  7. #7
    A.K.A "The Silver Fox" Gungho3D's Avatar
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    Ok so the advice to bake an aniMate Lite animation to Studio Keyframes definitely allows for a version of the DAZ animation to be exported … thanks again for that insight.

    Importing the .FBX into LW 2018
    Some kind of extra rigging happening for each mesh object output
    - if I delete those portions of the rig in LW associated with items of clothing and just keep the one for the base character
    - then there remains a single, cohesive rig which does "something" … just not the full range of expected motion (e.g. arms remain close to T pose, feet drift in the air)

    Also the morphs loading with the mesh (base character) on their own tear the mesh apart
    - disabling this is essential

    Applying an exported .BVH of the same animation to the .FBX imported base character
    - deleting the above rig and replacing it with the .bvh version of the animation "works"
    - … i.e. the rig imports fine and goes through the full motion range fine
    - … however it knows nothing of which weight maps are linked to which bones

    Is there some trick way of overlaying .bvh motion data onto an existing rig?
    - I suppose there is always the alternative of object sequencing
    - and maybe .mdd?

    ----------
    This exercise is simply about exploring "the art of the possible."

    I've spent about zero time ever messing with character animation, it would be good to know what the boundaries are …
    … hence all help gratefully received

  8. #8
    Registered User ianr's Avatar
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    Gung,
    Ryan @ liberty3d.com has great training on the very subject

    https://www.liberty3d.com/2016/07/th...pture-utility/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6UL4W-UVVc

    Ryan's is always great & spoken in well modulated way for learning

  9. #9
    ack ack Markc's Avatar
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    A Quickstart for you (Genesis 2):
    1.Make sure the animation is baked to the timeline.
    2.Export FBX.
    3.Figures/Morphs/Animation checked.
    4.fbx2011 binary.
    5.embed textures.
    6.merge diffuse/opacity.
    7.merge clothing to figure.
    8.allow degraded skinning.
    9.allow degraded scaling.
    10.in LW scale 1.0/motion plugin/LW joints.

    Genesis 3/8 don't work very well.
    Mac Pro (2010) OSX 10.13 RX580 Pulse LW2019

  10. #10
    A.K.A "The Silver Fox" Gungho3D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ianr View Post
    Gung,
    Ryan @ liberty3d.com has great training on the very subject

    https://www.liberty3d.com/2016/07/th...pture-utility/

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q6UL4W-UVVc

    Ryan's is always great & spoken in well modulated way for learning
    Thanks Ianr - that looks really good and useful ,,,

  11. #11
    A.K.A "The Silver Fox" Gungho3D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Markc View Post
    A Quickstart for you (Genesis 2):
    1.Make sure the animation is baked to the timeline.
    2.Export FBX.
    3.Figures/Morphs/Animation checked.
    4.fbx2011 binary.
    5.embed textures.
    6.merge diffuse/opacity.
    7.merge clothing to figure.
    8.allow degraded skinning.
    9.allow degraded scaling.
    10.in LW scale 1.0/motion plugin/LW joints.

    Genesis 3/8 don't work very well.
    That heads up regarding trying G2 + fbx-2011 was worth its weight in gold, so thank you very much indeed!

    I've been trying G8 with nothing good happening, the G2+fbx-2011 combo did the trick, everything animated in LW perfectly "straight out of the box" via fbx import (also it's not trying to be clever with morphs either).

  12. #12
    ack ack Markc's Avatar
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    That’s good news...
    If you get Ryan’s plugin, you can export a T-pose fbx (no anim) and apply a bvh mocap file in LW, which works fantastic.
    Mac Pro (2010) OSX 10.13 RX580 Pulse LW2019

  13. #13
    Creative Director jaxtone's Avatar
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    DAZ Genesis 8 and Lightwave

    I use Genesis 8 characters and are very disappointed with DAZ3D´s new export routines.

    I seems like bugs and errors have infected the DAZ character.

    I started to animate a fight sequence in DAZ and this is what came out!
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    Curious

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by jaxtone View Post
    I use Genesis 8 characters and are very disappointed with DAZ3D´s new export routines.

    I seems like bugs and errors have infected the DAZ character.

    I started to animate a fight sequence in DAZ and this is what came out!
    Your joint orientation in LW seems wrong, you might have to change your import settings.

    I export from DAZ all the time (Gen1/Gen2/Gen3/Gen8) and import in LW or Cinema, no issues at all.

    However I wouldn't do the animation in DAZ itself but in your target application (LightWave).

  15. #15
    Creative Director jaxtone's Avatar
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    Marander!

    I had no problems earlier with the import to LW from DAZ. But this is the first time I try with Genesis 8.

    Thanks for your advice but I cannot find anything positive with LW:s character animation part whatsoever. Its still one of the most lousy on the planet.

    Do you really mean you skip the DAZ 3D character with all bones and morphs that are already integrated in their characters?

    Jack
    Curious

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