FBX Export - Styles Exported?  1-20  21-28

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 From:  Mark Brown (MABROWN)
3164.1 
Hi Michael,

When I export a model as FBX, should the colours be being exported? When I load my FBX model into another package, there don't seem to be any materials assigned.

Mark

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Mark
http://www.homepages.ihug.com.au/~mabrown/index.html

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 From:  Michael Gibson
3164.2 In reply to 3164.1 
Hi Mark, for polygon formats, styles are currently only exported to OBJ and LWO formats, not for FBX.

I would like to add them in to FBX in the future too. But I've found that it is pretty easy to mess up the FBX export so I don't think it is a good idea to try and work on it with only one more v2 beta remaining.

I should be able to work on it in MoI v3 though.

For now you will need to use either OBJ or LWO formats to preserve style information.

- Michael
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 From:  Mark Brown (MABROWN)
3164.3 In reply to 3164.2 
Hi Michael,

Thanks for that. I'm still dealing with export issues to Max. The fbx converter from Autodesk also seems to drop material information when it converts from obj. Fortunately I have a copy of Ultimate Unwrap 3D which seems to work when going from obj to fbx.

Mark

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Mark
http://www.homepages.ihug.com.au/~mabrown/index.html

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 From:  Michael Gibson
3164.4 In reply to 3164.3 
Hi Mark, yeah unfortunately Max has always seemed to have a variety of problems with imports.

I wish that they would just read in a regular OBJ file properly like most everyone else seems to be able to do...

In v3 I will make an attempt to add style export to the FBX exporter from MoI. I'm just not very confident about doing it without having much time for it to get tested before the final release of v2.

- Michael
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 From:  Mark Brown (MABROWN)
3164.5 In reply to 3164.4 
Hi Michael,

Obj still looks like my best option then. It seems that Max 2010 loads the Moi obj perfectly. Smoothing is excellent.

Unfortunately, I still need to texture the damn deck on these ships (I really do need to do that at least) and every other piece of software I've exported an obj from looks awful in Max. Weird dark shading sploges. Very frustrating as I'm happy with the models and just can't seem to find a way to solve this :(

Any chance Moi might allow us to assign textures as styles in the future (simple mapping like planar and box and the ability to rotate and scale textures would do me). I know the answer is going to be no but it seems that Moi is the only software I own which exports poly formats with correct shading.

Mark

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Mark
http://www.homepages.ihug.com.au/~mabrown/index.html

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 From:  Michael Gibson
3164.6 In reply to 3164.5 
Hi Mark,

> Any chance Moi might allow us to assign textures as
> styles in the future (simple mapping like planar and
> box and the ability to rotate and scale textures would
> do me).

Eventually I would like to have this, but this probably won't happen until MoI gets some kind of basic built in renderer. I'm not sure exactly when that will happen.


> I know the answer is going to be no but it seems that Moi
> is the only software I own which exports poly formats with
> correct shading.

I guess I don't quite understand though - Max has a whole bunch of functions in it for setting up textures... Why not set up the textures inside of Max after you have imported the geometry?

Basically right now I assume that for assigning textures, that you are going to be doing that inside of a rendering program or possibly a specialty texture mapping program even. Usually that just goes together more with the rendering side of things.

- Michael
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 From:  Mark Brown (MABROWN)
3164.7 In reply to 3164.6 
>Eventually I would like to have this, but this probably won't happen until MoI gets some kind of basic built in renderer. I'm not sure exactly when that will happen.

Wow, that's a surprise. I look forward to that some time in the future.

>I guess I don't quite understand though - Max has a whole bunch of functions in it for setting up textures... Why not set up the textures inside of Max after you have imported the geometry?

I don't own Max and will never be able to afford it unfortunately. I have tested the model in the Max trial. I'm not even sure it has save enabled but even if it does I'm certain that the license will preclude me from adding my deck texture and then selling my model. So I must find a solution in the next 30 days (trial expires) or I'm sunk (no pun intended!)

>Basically right now I assume that for assigning textures, that you are going to be doing that inside of a rendering program or possibly a specialty texture mapping program even. Usually that just goes together more with the rendering side of things.

Correct, i have added my texture using Ultimate Unwrap 3D and that has worked fine. However, I believe UU3D is not importing the face normals (is that what they are called?) from MoI's obj export or if it is that it isn't doing it very well. I can see the poor smoothing (shading sploges) in the ogl preview. I have just found a function in the UU3D menu called "Autosmooth Faces" which has an "angle" option. Using that the ogl preview and export improves markedly but it still isn't as good as the original Moi obj (which is perfect). I also note that max has a similar adjustment available for obj import and it works much the same. Max however *is* importing moi's original obj correctly without need of this adjustment.

In the end, I know my customer will be happy to add textures and materials within Max. I just really wanted to provide a model which is as "turn-key" as possible and I'm so close to being able to do that.

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Mark
http://www.homepages.ihug.com.au/~mabrown/index.html

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 From:  Michael Gibson
3164.8 In reply to 3164.7 
Hi Mark,

> Correct, i have added my texture using Ultimate Unwrap 3D
> and that has worked fine. However, I believe UU3D is not
> importing the face normals (is that what they are called?)
> from MoI's obj export or if it is that it isn't doing it very well.

Close - those are called "vertex normals", and yes if you don't get the same kind of shading that you see in MoI that's usually an indication that those normals are not coming through and instead have been cooked up on the other side just by an averaging process.


> I have just found a function in the UU3D menu called "Autosmooth
> Faces" which has an "angle" option. Using that the ogl preview and
> export improves markedly but it still isn't as good as the original
> Moi obj (which is perfect).

A couple of other things you may try are to not export n-gons (which some things are not set up to handle) and instead export with Output: Quads & Triangles.

Also if you use the "Divide larger than" option to cause your output mesh to be divided up into more evenly sized pieces, it can help to reduce shading glitches when the true normals are not going through.

You may also experiment with turning off the "Weld vertices along edges" option at export time as well - I have seen at least one program before that ignores vertex normals if the mesh is welded.


Other than that, maybe another possibility would be to use some different rendering program to assign textures and then export to Max from there.

2 free options which could possibly work are trueSpace (http://www.caligari.com/downloads.html), and Blender (http://www.blender.org/).

It can often times be difficult to get full materials to transfer between programs properly though... You may be in for an uphill battle to get it perfectly set up for Max without actually making it Max.

- Michael
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 From:  Mark Brown (MABROWN)
3164.9 In reply to 3164.8 
Hi Michael,

Thanks as always for your assistance, particularly as MoI isn't the issue here.

>Close - those are called "vertex normals", and yes if you don't get the same
>kind of shading that you see in MoI that's usually an indication that those
>normals are not coming through and instead have been cooked up on the
>other side just by an averaging process.

...and that is precisely what every piece of 3D software I've tried tonight appears to be doing. It seems that some software will import the vertex normals but then can't export the materials, others like UU3D can export the normals but not import them. Very frustrating.

>A couple of other things you may try are to not export n-gons (which some
>things are not set up to handle) and instead export with Output: Quads & Triangles.

I have made a point of triangulating everything I export for this project to keep
track of the 90k poly limit I have been set.

>Also if you use the "Divide larger than" option to cause your output mesh to be
>divided up into more evenly sized pieces, it can help to reduce shading glitches
>when the true normals are not going through.

I have also been doing that a lot too and it is very handy. Even so, that 90k poly
limit and a model with a fair bit of detail isn't helping the shading issue
much :(

>You may also experiment with turning off the "Weld vertices along edges" option
>at export time as well - I have seen at least one program before that ignores
>vertex normals if the mesh is welded.

Have tried that too on some software. Will try it on every piece of software if I
don't get lucky soon.

>Other than that, maybe another possibility would be to use some different
>rendering program to assign textures and then export to Max from there.
>2 free options which could possibly work are trueSpace and Blender

I have a fair bit of experience with trueSpace and have V5/6 and now 7+. tS I/O has always been pretty dire with obj being seriously ordinary. I tried it anyway and the inbuilt tS obj importer mirrored my model, reversed some of my faces and turned some parts inside out. Oh, and it got the shading wrong too. A third party plugin faired a little better but still no cigar.

No joy with Blender yet either. The only importer that seems close is Anthony D'Agostino's lwo importer which shades beautifully but drops all my materials.

I'm downloading Silo now. If anyone knows of a free or relatively inexpensive app which can import and export accurate obj's I would be very pleased to hear about it.

---
Mark
http://www.homepages.ihug.com.au/~mabrown/index.html

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 From:  Michael Gibson
3164.10 In reply to 3164.9 
Hi Mark, a couple of inexpensive commerical options that have potential are:

Carrara http://www.daz3d.com/i/software/carrara (Carrara 7 Express version is $90).

and

3DPaintBrush http://www.3dpaintbrush.com ($99 introductory price).


I think both of those do a good job of OBJ importing preserving the vertex normals - it has been a while since I have tested Carrara but I did recently verify that for 3DPaintBrush.

- Michael
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 From:  Michael Gibson
3164.11 In reply to 3164.9 
Hi Mark, also I think I have solution for the Blender problem for you.

The default Blender OBJ importer just seems to completely skip reading normals, but there is an alternate one I found on this page which does seem to actually read them in but accidentally throws them out at the very end by telling Blender to recalculate them.

I've modified that script (file named obj_io_modif232b.py attached below) to not do that recalculation at the end and with that set up it seems to bring in both normals and materials properly now.

To install this script, go to the Blender folder in c:\Program Files, and copy it into the .blender\scripts sub-folder.

After that inside of Blender there will be a new entry under File > Import, that says just plain "OBJ" (as opposed to "Wavefront (.obj)" which is the regular default import script). Hit the "Select Import" button that pops up to pick a file name and then "Done".

That seems like it may work - I tested this with Blender version 2.49a .

- Michael
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 From:  Frenchy Pilou (PILOU)
3164.12 
Mac Giver :)
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Pilou
Is beautiful that please without concept!
My Gallery
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 From:  Nick (BODINI)
3164.13 In reply to 3164.12 
@pilou: lol!
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 From:  Mark Brown (MABROWN)
3164.14 In reply to 3164.11 
Michael, one man show or not, you provide the best after sales service that I have ever received, for any product I have ever purchased, period!

Might I suggest that the new script be placed on the Wiki page underneath Anthony D'Agostino's lwo importer?

Looking forward to getting home to try this. Then at the very least I'm going to have to learn to apply textures in Blender.

Mark

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Mark
http://www.homepages.ihug.com.au/~mabrown/index.html

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 From:  Michael Gibson
3164.15 In reply to 3164.14 
Hi Mark,

> Might I suggest that the new script be placed on the
> Wiki page underneath Anthony D'Agostino's lwo
> importer?

Yup, that's a good idea - maybe I will wait until you have had a chance to try it and see if it actually works properly or not though.

It seems to be good with a few simple tests over here, but testing it on an actual project would be better verification.

- Michael
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 From:  NightCabbage
3164.16 
Hm, did anyone test to see if this works?

I'm running the 2.5 version of Blender, so the script suffers the same problem as Anthony's lwo importer (invalid syntax, print command, and maybe others - as in this thread: http://moi3d.com/forum/index.php?webtag=MOI&msg=979.1)

Providing these small problems can be fixed, which would, in general, be better to use - lwo or obj importer?
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 From:  Michael Gibson
3164.17 In reply to 3164.16 
Hi NightCabbage,

> Providing these small problems can be fixed, which would, in
> general, be better to use - lwo or obj importer?

The main difference is that the OBJ importer does try to import materials as well, the lwo one imports geometry only.

But also the OBJ importer seems to have bugs in its material handling as well though.

For now you'll probably need to stick with Blender 2.49 instead of version 2.5 in order to run these particular scripts.

- Michael
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 From:  Mark Brown (MABROWN)
3164.18 In reply to 3164.17 
Hi NightCabbage,

Michael's modified blender obj script works perfectly to import Moi obj's with the vertex normals intact. Unfortunately, I found that the script had an inconsistent bug which seemed to shift the material assignments by 1. eg. if materials were red, green & blue then the blender importer would make green = red and blue = green. My recollection is that the red colour would switch to a grey default.

I checked the script with my limited skills. There seems to be an indexing issue. I thought I had it zapped a couple of times but it was never consistent. I doubt it is a difficult fix but I didn't have time to mess around with it.

What is your reason for needing to import the model as obj into blender with material colours assigned? Do you need to UV map in blender or perhaps you have my problem of needing to merge obj "parts" into one obj? If it is the latter then Michael has kindly solved that problem for us with a little app you can download via the wiki. Needless to say, it does the job perfectly.

Mark

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Mark
http://www.homepages.ihug.com.au/~mabrown/index.html

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 From:  NightCabbage
3164.19 
No, thankfully I don't need the materials intact at all - so this shouldn't be a problem for me.

What I'm attempting to do is to import either a .obj or .lwo file into Blender 2.5 with the normals intact - and this is proving difficult :)

From what I can see, Anthony has created the following:

- Patch for Blender 2.4 to preserve normals
- Import script for Blender 2.4 to import normals

- Patch for Blender 2.5 to preserve normals
- But no import script for Blender 2.5 to import normals - which is my problem :(
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 From:  Mark Brown (MABROWN)
3164.20 In reply to 3164.19 
Hi NightCabbage,

Do you still have 2.4x installed? Couldn't you just use the 2.4 modified obj or lwo importer, save it out as a .blend and then open in 2.5?

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Mark
http://www.homepages.ihug.com.au/~mabrown/index.html

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