Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!



  • Hello folks,

    Firstly, I'M BAAAACK!!! After a rather terminal PC failure, resulting in the operating system being irretrievably damaged, I spent weeks trying to get everything in order again and am still on the task.

    Onto my question:

    I'm running PP11 and, for the time being, until I'm at home with SF, I'm using the FF render engine. I'm still getting these nasty blotches in some of my renders and I'm not sure how to kill them without ruining the feel of the piece.

    Before we get into resolutions, please be aware that I have used this lighting, the figure with body hair, the render settings and the props involved before without issue, so I'm sure this is an issue which is arising from the use of multiple 'things' at once. One thing I have noticed is that these blotches appear far more frequently when I use the dome from the primitives menu.

    Below is a cropped section of a problematic render.

    0_1531813238472_file_f7e6c85504ce6e82442c770f7c8606f0.png

    Below is some information on the scene.

    0_1531813286710_file_3988c7f88ebcb58c6ce932b957b6f332.jpg

    0_1531813307839_file_0aa1883c6411f7873cb83dacb17b0afc.jpg

    0_1531813316878_file_1ff8a7b5dc7a7d1f0ed65aaa29c04b1e.jpg

    0_1531813330800_file_76dc611d6ebaafc66cc0879c71b5db5c.jpg

    0_1531813339703_file_02522a2b2726fb0a03bb19f2d8d9524d.jpg

    0_1531813348197_file_73278a4a86960eeb576a8fd4c9ec6997.jpg

    I would prefer to remedy this without altering the look and feel of the scene, in terms of lighting. As far as the lighting goes, I have used this rig for much of my work and it has served me exceptionally well, it just seems that certain combinations of something give these ugly blotches. Could someone help, please?

    Cheers.


  • Poser Ambassadors

    Light 1 is the most probable cause for 2 reasons.

    • Use Ray Trace shadows and not the Depth map shadows
    • Set Shadow Min Bias to .02 or even 0.1 (don't use the default 0.8)

    In FireFly render settings set MSR to 0.2 can also help



  • @vilters No, This happens when just using IDL from a skydome as well.



  • I get spots in Poser 11 in a scene that otherwise works fine for poser 10, and I discovered that it has to do with shadow min bias in my infinite lights. Something has changed in p11 there. Mine was too small so the higher I went, the more the spots would bugger off. Not sure about these spots though. I would absolutely avoid IBL, and set raytrace shadows on all your lights. Make sure IDL is checked in your FF settings.



  • @erogenesis I would also get this effect when using things like cutoff jeans on V4. I'd get the splotches underneath the transparent parts of the jeans.



  • @ghostship said in Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!:

    @erogenesis I would also get this effect when using things like cutoff jeans on V4. I'd get the splotches underneath the transparent parts of the jeans.

    ah yes that might be possible. Every scene where I get these artefacts does involve something transparent. I already had that hunch. I think we might have found us a bug.

    @Glen85 do you have the sun shining through a transparent window in the scene? because that could explain it.



  • @erogenesis iirc @glen85 uses a full body hair suit on his female characters.



  • @ghostship said in Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!:

    @erogenesis iirc @glen85 uses a full body hair suit on his female characters.

    ahhhh, well... I'll see if I can replicate this in a simple scene and report it to SM



  • I'll repeat what I recently said in another thread:

    @englishbob said in How do I get rid of these black splotch shadows?:

    Unfortunately, there's a problem with the Firefly implementation in Poser 11 which has degraded the performance of the ray accelerator - the bottom line is that some kinds of curved surfaces which are illuminated mostly by IDL rather than direct light are more prone to blotches than was the case in Poser 10 / 2014. I raised a bug report about this two years ago, and I'm assuming it will never be fixed, which is a shame. :(

    The thread is here if you want to read about it, although the first page and a half are mainly the blind leading the blind. ;)
    https://forum.smithmicro.com/topic/877/idl-in-poser-11-a-step-back-from-poser-10

    To cut to the chase. A few things you can try:

    • Make sure 'smooth polygons' is deselected in your render settings
    • Subdivide the item which is showing the problem (1 level is usually enough)
    • Turn down the IDL intensity to less than 1 - I generally go for 0.5 to 0.65
    • Render in Poser 10 or preferably Poser Pro 2014 - I say this tongue in cheek, but I bought a copy of Poser 10 purely for rendering difficult scenes, and I haven't regretted it.

    Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but hope that helps somewhat.



  • @englishbob said in Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!:

    I'll repeat what I recently said in another thread:

    @englishbob said in How do I get rid of these black splotch shadows?:

    Unfortunately, there's a problem with the Firefly implementation in Poser 11 which has degraded the performance of the ray accelerator - the bottom line is that some kinds of curved surfaces which are illuminated mostly by IDL rather than direct light are more prone to blotches than was the case in Poser 10 / 2014. I raised a bug report about this two years ago, and I'm assuming it will never be fixed, which is a shame. :(

    The thread is here if you want to read about it, although the first page and a half are mainly the blind leading the blind. ;)
    https://forum.smithmicro.com/topic/877/idl-in-poser-11-a-step-back-from-poser-10

    To cut to the chase. A few things you can try:

    • Make sure 'smooth polygons' is deselected in your render settings
    • Subdivide the item which is showing the problem (1 level is usually enough)
    • Turn down the IDL intensity to less than 1 - I generally go for 0.5 to 0.65
    • Render in Poser 10 or preferably Poser Pro 2014 - I say this tongue in cheek, but I bought a copy of Poser 10 purely for rendering difficult scenes, and I haven't regretted it.

    Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but hope that helps somewhat.

    Hehe yep I also switch back a LOT to Poser Pro 2014 because of this. btw did you mean IDL or IBL in your post? In any case, waw, 2 years ago eh? Sigh...

    thanks for sharing



  • @erogenesis said in Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!:

    [...] btw did you mean IDL or IBL in your post? In any case, waw, 2 years ago eh? Sigh...

    thanks for sharing

    I definitely meant IDL. I don't use IBL in any significant way so I don't know if that's affected too.

    The scene which I sent to Smith Micro support is here:
    http://www.morphography.uk.vu/public/TestScene.pzz
    You'll need to right-click on the link and choose 'Save link as...' or whatever equivalent your browser offers.



  • Thanks for the replies, folks and sorry for the delay... I lost literally every single Poser scene I ever made and was getting very depressed... turns out they were on another drive (I have, quite literally, a huge block of hard drives...).

    Anyway, no there isn't any transparent window or anything and it's nothing to do with the body hair either, as I've already played with that. I'll make adjustments suggested and report back now that I've stopped being miserably depressed over the apparent loss of years of work, lol! I swear I need a trillion terabyte solid state drive to just dump everything on and rid myself of what is, frankly, a very heavy tote bag full of hard drives!



  • Ok so...

    Switched to raytrace shadows on both shadow casting lights - no difference.

    Adjusted the min bias of said lights - no difference.

    Adjusted the shading rate in render settings - no difference.

    Switched off smoothing - simply moved the blotches, they still appear.

    Swore at it - no difference.

    Told it I would drop it off a tower block - no difference.

    I'm now preparing to put Marmite into the BD-Rom drive, will report back.



  • It's official... because I say it is... it is directly related to the Poser 11 'construct' primitive. I've already made sure shadows and light emission are disabled, but the only thing that gets rid of the blotches is marking it as invisible.



  • @Glen85 can you export and import the construct mesh without it's current materials and see if that has the same effect (to distinguish mesh issues from material)?



  • As far as i remember the issue is related to IDL in general. I did not use the construct but a env-sphere and had the issue.
    I reported it together with a test scene 2.5 years ago and it was confirmed by tech support.
    englishbob reported the same problem about 2 years ago…



  • @nagra_00_ said in Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!:

    As far as i remember the issue is related to IDL in general. I did not use the construct but a env-sphere and had the issue.

    I only recently started using IDL b/c in the past I hadn't had good luck with it, due to slowness and the splotches y'all are describing.

    This time I created a simple "render room" in my modeler (Cheetah3D for Mac) with separate mat zones for each surface, and in Poser (Pro 11), I applied a procedural texture to each surface and activated the ambient channel (white chip, value 1) on those surfaces that wouldn't show in the render. I added one point light set to Inverse Linear and 10% intensity and positioned it to provide specular highlights on my subject. I also added an infinite light with the Diffuse and Specular color chips blacked out, so that it would show only in preview.

    The first time I tried rendering this setup (with Irradiance Cache and IDL quality both set to 90 and bounces set at 4), I was amazed at how fast it was and at the absence of splotches A 3k render took just a few minutes!

    I've since experimented with putting HDRs on the Poser Construct and on BB's envirosphere and hiding the ceiling and back wall of my render room, but those methods are always slower and produce splotches. I don't think the problem is with the HDRs b/c I can put one on the back wall of my render room (not visible to camera) and get basically the same results as I did using only ambient materials on the walls (but with a slightly longer render time).

    So the conclusion I've drawn, at least for my own purposes, is that IDL works better when the subject is enclosed in a prop that's much smaller than a dome And who knows, maybe it works better with a square/rectangle shaped prop instead of spherical?

    Or it could be that IDL works better when the indirect light comes from ambient materials that are more even in brightness than an HDR, although I suppose that might defeat the purpose of using IDL for outdoor scenes (which I haven't yet tried).



  • @perpetualrevision This bug is strange. I do remember when i was setting up a city scene with IDL. All rendered fine until i added two cars to the scene. After doing so i got artifacts on the ground. There was nothing wrong with the cars. Had no problem using them in another scene. But in this scene they triggered the bug. Setting the cars to invisible and all was fine again. Thats just one example i run into.



  • I get these all the time. It's called self shadowing polygons. It happens often with large polygons. Here it is all over the back of my dinosaur.

    0_1532736371314_SelfShadingPolygons.jpg

    I get them when IDL is on or off. They are more pronounced with IDL. Essentially, the Shadow Min Bias is too low for the polygon. The above render used a shadow min bias of 0.1

    As @englishbob posted earlier, setting the subdivision to 1 generally helps. Here is the same dinosaur with a subdivision setting of 1.

    0_1532736973901_SelfShadingPolygons2.jpg

    I do consider this to be a bug in Poser. SM is either unable or unwilling to fix this problem.



  • @nagra_00_ said in Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!:

    This bug is strange. I do remember when i was setting up a city scene with IDL. All rendered fine until i added two cars to the scene. After doing so i got artifacts on the ground.

    I think I remember you posting about this at RDNA? Seemingly minor changes can have a major effect on the render. @perpetualrevision mentions an improvement if the environment is small which I think I've seen myself, although not tested it. I'm assuming it's down to the way the ray optimising works, since this is what was changed between P10 and P11, and is believed to be responsible for the blotches.

    @willdial said in Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!:

    I get them when IDL is on or off. They are more pronounced with IDL.

    I've never seen blotches when IDL was off, but that probably just means I'm not doing things the same way as you. :)

    @willdial said in Firefly Blotches... AGAIN!:

    I do consider this to be a bug in Poser. SM is either unable or unwilling to fix this problem.

    My report of the problem dates back to November 2016, and I believe @nagra_00_ had reported it earlier than that. The SM support response at the time said "I have updated a report filed by another staff. I do know the Engineers are looking into this report."

    I've drawn my own conclusions from this incident, and I suggest you do the same.