Post your Firefly Renders

  • some random Firefly renders for ya'lls entertainment! I might have repeated one or two, its easy to loose track in these threads.

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    3_1509486034639_hilux02a.jpg 2_1509486034639_safehouse01.jpg 1_1509486034639_safehouse03c.jpg 0_1509486034638_reading scripts.jpg

    5_1509486097345_back in the saddle0.jpg 4_1509486097345_concept shanty town04s.jpg 3_1509486097345_concept shanty town03s.jpg 2_1509486097345_concept shanty town05ss.jpg 1_1509486097344_Leone Girl 01bw.jpg 0_1509486097344_Leone Girl 03S.jpg

  • @Bytefactory3D said in Post your Firefly Renders:

    I completely understand your objections....

    I have no objections. :)

    You asked why I would want more material zones, so I wrote "why" and what I see as the advantages for those, namely easy customization from within the Mat Room without having to go outside of Poser.

    BUT, I fully support what you're doing and your reasons for limiting mat zones with no complaints at all, there. If you're making a product for others, you want them to have a great experience with it and this is likely the best way to go for the majority of your customers/end-users. And, those who want more mat zones? If they're tinkering with customizing the model, they likely already know how to create those zones, themselves. No harm, no foul, they'd probably enjoy the process given the reason they bought the model in the first place - PBR-like mats. :)

    So, I'm "on board" and have no issues or complaints with the premise.

    I'm very interested in this, since I render mostly in Firefly. Why? It's fast and I can get fairly desirable results, though I hunger for the realism that Superfly can provide. I just have to learn it more betterer and be willing to wait... :)

    There's a sale on the Substance pack, so I'll probably pick it up soon. While I don't consider you as advertising your product, here, I'll say you can look forward to a purchase from me once I delve into Substance.

    I would, however, like to read further exploration into this subject, especially one that covers the hows&whys of PBR in Firefly and some comparisons showing the advantages.

    What's the impact of many material zones on rendering times? Is it just the number of different/isolated operations that are dictated by "another material zone to process" or is there something greater, like each being allocated its own space, sometimes unnecessarily? I'd hate to think I'm substantially increasing my Firefly rendering times for little benefit for certain items/mat zone conveniences. (Did I just add 15% rendering time because I have a "Trim" mat zone on a shirt or lampshade?" :)

  • @morkonan
    I really don't want to advertise here, but the problem is that the technique I am describing as a new option for Firefly renders is based on something I developed myself, wish it could have been done by someone else, smile...
    I am always ready to send anybody who is interested and who contacts me the users guide (pdf).

    The PBR-Emulator adds around 30 nodes to the MAT zone in question, in order to be able to understand the standard metal/roughness PBR coding. Plus a PBR texture set of between 3 and 6 texture templates, preferably of high resolution, (I usually use 4096x4096). So if you remain with 100 MAT zones, this whole material needs to be prepared 100 times inside Poser, even if each of the 100 MAT domains contains just exactly the same material as all the others... Even if Poser keeps track of loaded texture maps and wouldn't load the very same map 100 times, still all the entire shader will be duplicated 100 times in the props files (figure, prop, materials) and needs to be prepared inside Poser during render times. That is where it saves a lot of resources if all the MAT domains can be collapsed to just one for each UV domain.

    This is the style for texturing which had been developed for real time render engines (game engines), so the purpose of PBR was (beside physically correct renders) also to reduce workload on the render engine to a very minimum, so it can be done in real time as the game is running. That is why all the properties are 'baked' into PBR maps, while in traditional Firefly materials it was coded in nodes which needed MANY calculations for each single pixel to be done during render time.

  • @Bytefactory3D have you looked into @bagginsbill 's matmatic node creation environment? That may afford you a way of defining the PBR map decoder and also simplify alternative map choices for different map zones.

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  • @Bytefactory3D these are great Firefly renders! To my eye the only real "tell" as to which is which, is that SuperFly has the "edge" in fresnel effect specularity when the surface is close to parallel with the line of sight.

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    @anomalaus said in Post your Firefly Renders:

    @Bytefactory3D these are great Firefly renders! To my eye the only real "tell" as to which is which, is that SuperFly has the "edge" in fresnel effect specularity when the surface is close to parallel with the line of sight.

    No it doesn't. That's just how he coded his emulator.

  • @bagginsbill meaning more work on the FF shader and you wouldn't tell them apart?

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    @anomalaus said in Post your Firefly Renders:

    @bagginsbill meaning more work on the FF shader and you wouldn't tell them apart?

    No - for that to be true there would need to be no discernible differences.

    What I'm saying is that I disagree with your assertion that the only difference (real "tell") is the fresnel effect at grazing angles.

    1. The difference in Fresnel is the result of the shader configuration and if configured properly FF and SF produce and draw identical Fresnel coefficients

    2. There are other differences that I can clearly see but you somehow dismissed

    So - I am saying that multiple differences exist, the particular difference you identified can actually be removed, but that others remain, and some of those cannot be removed.

  • Neither shader is important. The real problem is that Poser does a TERRIBLE job at representing people, something that should be its' strength. The main problem is it's inability to have muscles span joints and then to have skin flow around the resulting underlying object. The skinnier the model, the more you can't tell it does a terrible job, but try an athlete and it looks terrible. You can even see this in movie animation, where the Hulk is just, well, wrong. Sigh.

  • @bagginsbill that's fair. My admittedly hyperbolic comment was intended as encouragement, rather than critique, as I wouldn't know where to begin to offer advice on improvement of PBR shaders without having seen the nodes (and deferred my own offerings in favour of those who have actually levered their lids off).

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    Here are renders, from each engine, of a shiny prop in a furnace (pure white environment sphere).

    There is no discernible difference in the Fresnel effect. However, the reflections differ in edge pixel detail, where SF is largely good, but FF produces artifacts (aliasing) that I can't justify or eliminate, and FF misses some or all of highlights on nearly sharp edges.

    If the prop had a softer reflection, even more differences would manifest. I will let you guess which is which.

    0_1509636308015_FT1.png 0_1509636311618_FT2.png

  • When images are shown side-by-side, a person (with stereo vision) can do a cross-eyed focus —overlaying the two images as one, and then the brain can easily notice each of the the differences between the two images. (They are seen practically animated, and draw attention.)

    This works on anything similar; including typed pages of text, identical (in appearance), but for a few worlds here and there; they stand out immediately.

  • @bagginsbill
    I can see the FF render is on the right, seeing the difference in the specular reflection and the aliasing.

    I can also of course see the differences and imperfections in my own comparison renders below. But as a content creator, I needed something which could allow me use PBR texture sets not only in both render engines, but also backward to at least Poser 9, because I didn't want to leave these customers behind. Going for perfection, or for mathematical correctness, in my case would have led to end up with nothing, because I could achieve neither the one, nor the other.

    As a content creator, what I needed was some solution which would satisfy my clients, telling my content 'looks good' for them. To achieve this, it was very necessary for my to use PBR (because I wanted to use Substance Painter, with all the special effects like surface roughness, scratches and so on), without individual adjustments in the Firefly materials, if possible even without a need to create different materials to load for different render engines.

    So in order to come up with something practicable (in terms of resources, render times, backward compatibility with at least Poser 9, etc) I needed to sacrifice some accuracy and correctness. That is why I called it 'Emulator', and not 'Converter', and I always made it clear it is not mathematically correct, but only intentends to 'come close' and keep the cost (resources and render times) as low as possible the same time.

    I assume that few customers will ever render content in both render engines with identical lighting, in order to compare deviations in the fresnel effect. Mostly what they want from me is an asset which 'looks good' in their perception, and if they are users of older Poser versions and can usually not benefit from using PBR textures, they will even be more grateful for something which 'comes close' and still doesn't grind Firefly to a halt during renders.

    As for fellow content creators, as long as they individually can live with the differences in appearence between a Firefly and a Superfly render in their content, for the advantage of doing the texturing only once for both render engines and all Poser versions 9+, I guess it is also an advantage doing so. So my reference renders are not intended to claim 'there is no difference', but instead 'see the difference and judge for yourself if it can be acceptable enough for you to use it in your content, or not'.

    I am grateful for the discussion, because it shows that basically both sides of the medal have their pro's and cons. And differences in judgement about reference renders basically result from different expectations about goals to achieve. Like I said, i would have been too happy (from the point of view of content creation) if Smith Micro could have come up with some 'upgrade node' like i.e. the P11 Physical Node offered for Poser 9 and Poser 10, but they haven't. I would be too happy if some 'perfect' or 'mathematically correct' shader exists for Firefly to use PBR, provided it is practicable in terms of resources and render times for the 'average Joe's expectations', which I have to respect as a content creator.

    Unfortunately I don't know any and never found one anywhere, so I went ahead and created my own practicable solution, that is the story behind my Firefly PBR renders.

  • @Bytefactory3D for the record I've noticed your emulator before but just haven't had the time to fart around with it. Its cool to see that people still bother with FF. Firefly is not the most perfect renderer but it suits me fine for what I do. I like it and I'll probably be using it for a while to come.

    6_1509646573608_Lali03.jpg 5_1509646573608_xtina03.jpg 4_1509646573608_Sunny days 01.jpg 3_1509646573608_Tactical Lali 02.jpg 2_1509646573608_Tactical Lali 03.jpg 1_1509646573608_Tactical Lali 04.jpg 0_1509646573608_Tactical Lali 05.jpg

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  • @bagginsbill said in Post your Firefly Renders:

    FF produces artifacts (aliasing) that I can't justify or eliminate, and FF misses some or all of highlights on nearly sharp edges.

    Did you check the "HDRI output" option? If so, uncheck it and try again.

  • SuperFly has a nasty tendency to break skin, especially around the neck edge of a character where it joins the chest, but Firefly doesn't. Weird.

  • @tburzio Got image of that you can show?

  • @eclark1849
    Freak3, no change in pose or lights, Medium Auto FireFly, Medium Detaults Superfly