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17.5 in the video at 1:27:00 whats the work flow get same out put of principled shadier March 14, 2019, 2:02 p.m.

The first thing you should do when importing Metallic or Roughness maps into the Principled shader is to set Metal and Roughness to 1.0. In both the viewport and mantra, the map is multiplied by this value, so their defaults of 0 and 0.3 will severely reduce the effect of the maps if not set to 1.

The Principled shader is missing is an Occlusion map, which the viewport can support if you add a File>Image parameter and tag it with the OGL tag “ogl_occlusionmap”. However, mantra will ignore that map.

Animation and subdivision... March 12, 2019, 12:26 p.m.

Houdini doesn't use GPU-accelerated OpenSubDiv. We used to a few versions back, but when we upgraded to OSD 3.0, their GLSL shaders were reworked and haven't been integrated into Houdini.

17.5 viewport shadows March 10, 2019, 10:10 p.m.

Most of the work in 17.5 for shadows revolved around performance and memory use, though there was some work done for area lights to make the ahadows a bit more representative. Shadowmap memory is capped based on VRAM so many more lights can cast shadows (100s), and maps are generated incrementally to avoid long redraws. However, what's in 17.5 is just a portion (half? ) of what is planned for next release.