Author Topic: VERY IMPORTANT - Normal Maps and Texture Sets  (Read 8341 times)

Hi everybody,  I have a couple of questions that I think everybody interest! From begginer to advanced level...
so first of all :

1) NORMAL MAP QUESTION:
I have read and researched  all over the internet, tutorials but someone say you gotta do that, other completely different, and therefore I really don't know what to do... so can we sort it out once it for all...
I'm been using 3ds max for my workflow but when it comes to normal maps there are headache about uv split, smooth groups, hard edges, and a couple more...
I have been watching these tut : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gR3r7Xmhmlk&list=PLB0wXHrWAmCx994Cb7iRFSmupYHFw5DTx&index=21 and your tutor put crate model on one smoothing group and showed us a workflow for UE and UNITY, but maybe i want to use substance painter/designer to get maps and have production rendering or animation inside max.

So regarding that in mind can you please clarify for all of us particularly for 3ds max :

1) When i prepare model in 3ds max for baking in SUBSTANCE PAINTER DO I HAVE TO SPLIT UV's ON EVERY EDGE WHERE I WANT TO HAVE HARD EDGE? AND do i have to put every UV ISLAND ( which coresponds with appropriate polygon on model ) on DFFERENT SMOOTHING GROUP > 1,2,3,4 AND SO ON... ?????

2) IF WE MUST DO THIS THEN IF WE HAVE SOME COMPLEX GEOMETRY EVENTUALLY  IN OUR 0-1 UV SPACE EVERYTHING WILL BE CROWDED, AND ALL PARTS WILL NOT HAVE SAME TEXEL DENSITY ( how you describe in another tutorial ) !!!!
SO IF YOU CAN POINT OR ONE OF YOUR TUTORS CAN RECORD SOLUTION HOW WOULD YOU SET UP LIKE HE SET UP THAT CRATE IN ALLEGORITHMIC's TUTORIAL WHEN HE PUT ONE SIDE ON SINGLE SMOOTH GROUP!
HOW TO SET UP LIKE THAT IN 3DS MAX IN ORDER TO SPARE UV SPACE AND TO HAVE IT SHADED CORRECTLY WHEN WE IMPORT IN MAX AND RENDER!?!?!

3) ANOTHER SOLUTION WOULD BE THIS > IF WE HAVE TO HAVE SMOOTHING GROUPS AND UV SPLITS, THEN I WOLUD PUT MY COMPLEX MODEL AND IT'S UV's IN DIFFERENT UV TILES ( which introduces us with multi uv tile workflow) IMPORT IN SUBSTANCE PAINTER AND BAKE! I SAW THAT YOU INTRODUCED WITH 2.1 VERSION UDIM WORKFLOW WHICH BASICALLY MULTI UV TILE WORKFLOW AS I UNDERSTOOD IT. SO WILL SUBSTANCE PAINTER BE ABLE TO BAKE ALL OF MAPS ON MULTI UV TILES??? I MEAN NORMAL, AO, CAVITY etc. ON GEOMETRY WHICH LAYS ON 0-1 UV SPACE, AND THEN DO SAME FOR REST OF UV TILES DEPENDS HOW MUCH WE HAVE THEM?!?!?
I know that max, and maya s far as I know cant bake textures outside of 0-1 uv space so you see imortance of this question?

4) i SAW YOUR TUTOR SET UP TWO MATERIALS AND BASICALLY GOT TWO TEXTURE SETS FOR CRATE TOP AND BOTTOM! AND THEY OVERLAP BUT SUBSTANCE PAINTER IS FILTERING THEM BASED ON MAT. SETUP > AND THAT IS OKAY, BUT IF I IMPORT THAT CRATE IN MAX I WOULD HAVE UV OVERLAP I UV EDITOR AND IT IS A MESS > SO I WOULD MOVE PRECISELY TOP OR BOTTOM FROM 0-1 TO 1-0 UV SPACE, AND THEN REST OF TEXTURE FOR THAT UV TEXTURE SET, OFFSET THEM AND BASICALLY SORT THAT PROBLEM..
SO IS THIS SOLUTION OR NOT?

5) I HAVE READ ON THIS FORUM THAT MANY PEOPLE HAVE PROBLEMS WITH NORMAL MAP BAKED FROM MAX IMORTED INTO SUBSTANCE PAINTER AND YOU SAID THAT YOU CURRENTLY DO NOT SUPPORT 3DS MAX's TANGET BASIS SPACE.
SO MY QUESTION IS IF I BAKE NORMAL MAP IN SP/SD WOULD IT RENDER AND SHADE CORRECTLY OR IT NEEDS TO BE CHANGED THIS : http://help.autodesk.com/view/3DSMAX/2016/ENU//?guid=GUID-86205F0D-6143-432A-B0D4-5CCC4DB2699F > NORMAL BUMP MODE ( you can see this on this link ) OR HOW TO SET IT UP CORRECTLY IN ORDER TO USE SP/SD IN PRODUCTION , ANIMATION OR WHAT EVER...

6) AND BIG NO NO FROM YOUR SIDE IS THAT YOU DID NOT EXPLAINED HOW TO SET UP CAGE SINCE YOU HAVE THAT OPTION IN SP. I MEAN IF YOU APPLY DIFFERENT MAT. AND SUBSTANCE PAINTER USE NAMING CONVENCTION TO BAKE DIFFERENT PARTS OF GEOMETRY, SO NOT TO OVER LAP, THEN HOW TO SET UP CAGE? DO I HAVE TO HAVE TWO CAGES BASED ON SAME NAMING CONVENCTION IN ONE FILE FORMAT ( OBJ.) OR WHAT????

7) AND AT LAST ONE CRITIC FROM ME - YOU SHOULD CONSIDER THAT MANY PEOPLE USES 3DS MAX IN THEIR PRODUCTION OR WORKFLOW AND ALL I SAW WAS TUTS RELATED TO MAYA... SO THAT IS NOT FAIR. OR OTHER PROGRAMS, BLENDER, MODO etc... SO YOU SHOULD REALLY CONSIDER PAYING ATTENTION TO OTHER MODELING PACKAGES BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE BUYING YOUR PRODUCT AND GIVING HARD EARNED MONEY FOR THAT, AND THEREFORE EXPECTING A SUPPORT AND EXPLANATION RELATED TO OTHER PROGRAMS. FAVORISING ONE MODEILNG PACKAGE IS NOT PROFESSIONAL.

I KNOW THAT SP/SD IS NOT PRIMARILY AIMING ON MODELING PACKAGES , MORE TOWARDS GAMING ENGINES BUT, SINCE PEOPLE HAVE ABILITY TO USE IT OTHER THAN GAMING ENGINES I THINK THAT THIS SAID WOULD BE FAIR.
JUST TO BE CLEAR I DONT MEAN NOTHING WRONG SP/SD ARE AMAZING PROGRAMS AND I USE THEM BUT WITH LITTLE MORE EXPLANATION WITH THIS Technicalities WOULD BE PERFECT.
SO IF SOMEONE FROM ALLEGORITHMIC CAN HELP ME WITH THESE QUESTIONS OR POINT TO EXACT DIRECTION I WOULD APPRECIATE IT MEGA MUCH!
 ALL THE BEST WISHES AND KEEP UP BUILDING THIS GREAT PROGRAM,
THNKS IN ADVANCE
CHEERS :)

Hi everybody,  I have a couple of questions that I think everybody interest! From begginer to advanced level...
so first of all :

1) NORMAL MAP QUESTION:
I have read and researched  all over the internet, tutorials but someone say you gotta do that, other completely different, and therefore I really don't know what to do... so can we sort it out once it for all...
I'm been using 3ds max for my workflow but when it comes to normal maps there are headache about uv split, smooth groups, hard edges, and a couple more...
I have been watching these tut : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gR3r7Xmhmlk&list=PLB0wXHrWAmCx994Cb7iRFSmupYHFw5DTx&index=21 and your tutor put crate model on one smoothing group and showed us a workflow for UE and UNITY, but maybe i want to use substance painter/designer to get maps and have production rendering or animation inside max.

So regarding that in mind can you please clarify for all of us particularly for 3ds max :

1) When i prepare model in 3ds max for baking in SUBSTANCE PAINTER DO I HAVE TO SPLIT UV's ON EVERY EDGE WHERE I WANT TO HAVE HARD EDGE? AND do i have to put every UV ISLAND ( which coresponds with appropriate polygon on model ) on DFFERENT SMOOTHING GROUP > 1,2,3,4 AND SO ON... ?????

2) IF WE MUST DO THIS THEN IF WE HAVE SOME COMPLEX GEOMETRY EVENTUALLY  IN OUR 0-1 UV SPACE EVERYTHING WILL BE CROWDED, AND ALL PARTS WILL NOT HAVE SAME TEXEL DENSITY ( how you describe in another tutorial ) !!!!
SO IF YOU CAN POINT OR ONE OF YOUR TUTORS CAN RECORD SOLUTION HOW WOULD YOU SET UP LIKE HE SET UP THAT CRATE IN ALLEGORITHMIC's TUTORIAL WHEN HE PUT ONE SIDE ON SINGLE SMOOTH GROUP!
HOW TO SET UP LIKE THAT IN 3DS MAX IN ORDER TO SPARE UV SPACE AND TO HAVE IT SHADED CORRECTLY WHEN WE IMPORT IN MAX AND RENDER!?!?!

3) ANOTHER SOLUTION WOULD BE THIS > IF WE HAVE TO HAVE SMOOTHING GROUPS AND UV SPLITS, THEN I WOLUD PUT MY COMPLEX MODEL AND IT'S UV's IN DIFFERENT UV TILES ( which introduces us with multi uv tile workflow) IMPORT IN SUBSTANCE PAINTER AND BAKE! I SAW THAT YOU INTRODUCED WITH 2.1 VERSION UDIM WORKFLOW WHICH BASICALLY MULTI UV TILE WORKFLOW AS I UNDERSTOOD IT. SO WILL SUBSTANCE PAINTER BE ABLE TO BAKE ALL OF MAPS ON MULTI UV TILES??? I MEAN NORMAL, AO, CAVITY etc. ON GEOMETRY WHICH LAYS ON 0-1 UV SPACE, AND THEN DO SAME FOR REST OF UV TILES DEPENDS HOW MUCH WE HAVE THEM?!?!?
I know that max, and maya s far as I know cant bake textures outside of 0-1 uv space so you see imortance of this question?

4) i SAW YOUR TUTOR SET UP TWO MATERIALS AND BASICALLY GOT TWO TEXTURE SETS FOR CRATE TOP AND BOTTOM! AND THEY OVERLAP BUT SUBSTANCE PAINTER IS FILTERING THEM BASED ON MAT. SETUP > AND THAT IS OKAY, BUT IF I IMPORT THAT CRATE IN MAX I WOULD HAVE UV OVERLAP I UV EDITOR AND IT IS A MESS > SO I WOULD MOVE PRECISELY TOP OR BOTTOM FROM 0-1 TO 1-0 UV SPACE, AND THEN REST OF TEXTURE FOR THAT UV TEXTURE SET, OFFSET THEM AND BASICALLY SORT THAT PROBLEM..
SO IS THIS SOLUTION OR NOT?

5) I HAVE READ ON THIS FORUM THAT MANY PEOPLE HAVE PROBLEMS WITH NORMAL MAP BAKED FROM MAX IMORTED INTO SUBSTANCE PAINTER AND YOU SAID THAT YOU CURRENTLY DO NOT SUPPORT 3DS MAX's TANGET BASIS SPACE.
SO MY QUESTION IS IF I BAKE NORMAL MAP IN SP/SD WOULD IT RENDER AND SHADE CORRECTLY OR IT NEEDS TO BE CHANGED THIS : http://help.autodesk.com/view/3DSMAX/2016/ENU//?guid=GUID-86205F0D-6143-432A-B0D4-5CCC4DB2699F > NORMAL BUMP MODE ( you can see this on this link ) OR HOW TO SET IT UP CORRECTLY IN ORDER TO USE SP/SD IN PRODUCTION , ANIMATION OR WHAT EVER...

6) AND BIG NO NO FROM YOUR SIDE IS THAT YOU DID NOT EXPLAINED HOW TO SET UP CAGE SINCE YOU HAVE THAT OPTION IN SP. I MEAN IF YOU APPLY DIFFERENT MAT. AND SUBSTANCE PAINTER USE NAMING CONVENCTION TO BAKE DIFFERENT PARTS OF GEOMETRY, SO NOT TO OVER LAP, THEN HOW TO SET UP CAGE? DO I HAVE TO HAVE TWO CAGES BASED ON SAME NAMING CONVENCTION IN ONE FILE FORMAT ( OBJ.) OR WHAT????

7) AND AT LAST ONE CRITIC FROM ME - YOU SHOULD CONSIDER THAT MANY PEOPLE USES 3DS MAX IN THEIR PRODUCTION OR WORKFLOW AND ALL I SAW WAS TUTS RELATED TO MAYA... SO THAT IS NOT FAIR. OR OTHER PROGRAMS, BLENDER, MODO etc... SO YOU SHOULD REALLY CONSIDER PAYING ATTENTION TO OTHER MODELING PACKAGES BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE BUYING YOUR PRODUCT AND GIVING HARD EARNED MONEY FOR THAT, AND THEREFORE EXPECTING A SUPPORT AND EXPLANATION RELATED TO OTHER PROGRAMS. FAVORISING ONE MODEILNG PACKAGE IS NOT PROFESSIONAL.

I KNOW THAT SP/SD IS NOT PRIMARILY AIMING ON MODELING PACKAGES , MORE TOWARDS GAMING ENGINES BUT, SINCE PEOPLE HAVE ABILITY TO USE IT OTHER THAN GAMING ENGINES I THINK THAT THIS SAID WOULD BE FAIR.
JUST TO BE CLEAR I DONT MEAN NOTHING WRONG SP/SD ARE AMAZING PROGRAMS AND I USE THEM BUT WITH LITTLE MORE EXPLANATION WITH THIS Technicalities WOULD BE PERFECT.
SO IF SOMEONE FROM ALLEGORITHMIC CAN HELP ME WITH THESE QUESTIONS OR POINT TO EXACT DIRECTION I WOULD APPRECIATE IT MEGA MUCH!
 ALL THE BEST WISHES AND KEEP UP BUILDING THIS GREAT PROGRAM,
THNKS IN ADVANCE
CHEERS :)

Hi,

Thanks for your feedback on the software. I agree that I should use a wider range of packages for tutorials and will do this in the future. In the case of using Maya, I always make sure to show techniques that will work in all programs, so it's not Maya specific. With that said, the workflow should be the same in Max. Although, I admit I'm not a max user : )

1) When i prepare model in 3ds max for baking in SUBSTANCE PAINTER DO I HAVE TO SPLIT UV's ON EVERY EDGE WHERE I WANT TO HAVE HARD EDGE? AND do i have to put every UV ISLAND ( which coresponds with appropriate polygon on model ) on DFFERENT SMOOTHING GROUP > 1,2,3,4 AND SO ON... ?????


For the smoothing groups, you can use a single smoothing group for baking if the tangent basis is matching between the baker and renderer. Painter uses the mikkt tangent space which is the same for both UE4 and Unity (wasn't unity at the time of the tutorial recording). The reason to use UV splits with padding is if you have a mismatch in bake and render tangent basis. That is a typical normal map workflow as it you may need to add hard edges to minimize harsh gradients in the normal map. I'm not sure about the tangent basis for 3ds Max. Maya doesn't use mikkT as well however, it doesn't matter as I am baking in Painter and rendering in UE4 or Unity, so I can use a single smoothing group for the most part. This would be the same for 3ds Max. If you are rendering in Max and Max doesn't support MikkT then you most likely will need to add some hard edges and UV padding to control the normal map.

2) IF WE MUST DO THIS THEN IF WE HAVE SOME COMPLEX GEOMETRY EVENTUALLY  IN OUR 0-1 UV SPACE EVERYTHING WILL BE CROWDED, AND ALL PARTS WILL NOT HAVE SAME TEXEL DENSITY ( how you describe in another tutorial ) !!!!
SO IF YOU CAN POINT OR ONE OF YOUR TUTORS CAN RECORD SOLUTION HOW WOULD YOU SET UP LIKE HE SET UP THAT CRATE IN ALLEGORITHMIC's TUTORIAL WHEN HE PUT ONE SIDE ON SINGLE SMOOTH GROUP!
HOW TO SET UP LIKE THAT IN 3DS MAX IN ORDER TO SPARE UV SPACE AND TO HAVE IT SHADED CORRECTLY WHEN WE IMPORT IN MAX AND RENDER!?!?!

3) ANOTHER SOLUTION WOULD BE THIS > IF WE HAVE TO HAVE SMOOTHING GROUPS AND UV SPLITS, THEN I WOLUD PUT MY COMPLEX MODEL AND IT'S UV's IN DIFFERENT UV TILES ( which introduces us with multi uv tile workflow) IMPORT IN SUBSTANCE PAINTER AND BAKE! I SAW THAT YOU INTRODUCED WITH 2.1 VERSION UDIM WORKFLOW WHICH BASICALLY MULTI UV TILE WORKFLOW AS I UNDERSTOOD IT. SO WILL SUBSTANCE PAINTER BE ABLE TO BAKE ALL OF MAPS ON MULTI UV TILES??? I MEAN NORMAL, AO, CAVITY etc. ON GEOMETRY WHICH LAYS ON 0-1 UV SPACE, AND THEN DO SAME FOR REST OF UV TILES DEPENDS HOW MUCH WE HAVE THEM?!?!?
I know that max, and maya s far as I know cant bake textures outside of 0-1 uv space so you see imortance of this question?


The crate was using a single smoothing group for both sides. If you want to maximize the UV space so that each UV tile has good texel density, then you will need to create separate materials. Each material's corresponding UVs can minimize the amount of UV tiles and thus provide a better texel density. You can also use the UDIM workflow that we introduced in 2.1 where the UDIM tile will become a texture set in Painter. Painter will then export the texture set name (UDIM tile) as part of the filename so that your 3d program can read the files. I showcased this with Maya and Modo, but I'm not sure if 3ds max supports UDIM.

4) i SAW YOUR TUTOR SET UP TWO MATERIALS AND BASICALLY GOT TWO TEXTURE SETS FOR CRATE TOP AND BOTTOM! AND THEY OVERLAP BUT SUBSTANCE PAINTER IS FILTERING THEM BASED ON MAT. SETUP > AND THAT IS OKAY, BUT IF I IMPORT THAT CRATE IN MAX I WOULD HAVE UV OVERLAP I UV EDITOR AND IT IS A MESS > SO I WOULD MOVE PRECISELY TOP OR BOTTOM FROM 0-1 TO 1-0 UV SPACE, AND THEN REST OF TEXTURE FOR THAT UV TEXTURE SET, OFFSET THEM AND BASICALLY SORT THAT PROBLEM..
SO IS THIS SOLUTION OR NOT?

Painter filters them because the UVs are split by the material IDs. This would work the same in Max as you assign the textures to the materials and the UVs are used to apply the map to the mesh. All that is happening is that the material ID is dividing the mesh into "sections" where each section has it's associated UVs. You shouldn't need to offset textures or UVs. You are just applying the exported textures to the material channels.


5) I HAVE READ ON THIS FORUM THAT MANY PEOPLE HAVE PROBLEMS WITH NORMAL MAP BAKED FROM MAX IMORTED INTO SUBSTANCE PAINTER AND YOU SAID THAT YOU CURRENTLY DO NOT SUPPORT 3DS MAX's TANGET BASIS SPACE.
SO MY QUESTION IS IF I BAKE NORMAL MAP IN SP/SD WOULD IT RENDER AND SHADE CORRECTLY OR IT NEEDS TO BE CHANGED THIS : http://help.autodesk.com/view/3DSMAX/2016/ENU//?guid=GUID-86205F0D-6143-432A-B0D4-5CCC4DB2699F > NORMAL BUMP MODE ( you can see this on this link ) OR HOW TO SET IT UP CORRECTLY IN ORDER TO USE SP/SD IN PRODUCTION , ANIMATION OR WHAT EVER...


We don't support specific tangent basis from any program including max or maya. We support mikkt which is widely used. It's odd that max and maya don't natively support this. For example, modo uses mikkt now as well. In this case, I would not use the normal map. You can use height map for the details exported from Painter.

6) AND BIG NO NO FROM YOUR SIDE IS THAT YOU DID NOT EXPLAINED HOW TO SET UP CAGE SINCE YOU HAVE THAT OPTION IN SP. I MEAN IF YOU APPLY DIFFERENT MAT. AND SUBSTANCE PAINTER USE NAMING CONVENCTION TO BAKE DIFFERENT PARTS OF GEOMETRY, SO NOT TO OVER LAP, THEN HOW TO SET UP CAGE? DO I HAVE TO HAVE TWO CAGES BASED ON SAME NAMING CONVENCTION IN ONE FILE FORMAT ( OBJ.) OR WHAT????

The process with the cage is the same. The cage is only for the raycast. The process of using the match geo (_high and _low) works the same as shown in the video. You don't have to do anything different with the cage mesh as it only dictates how the ray is casted. The cage mesh simply overrides the frontal and rear distance settings which are harder to understand so the tutorial focuses on that aspect.

7) AND AT LAST ONE CRITIC FROM ME - YOU SHOULD CONSIDER THAT MANY PEOPLE USES 3DS MAX IN THEIR PRODUCTION OR WORKFLOW AND ALL I SAW WAS TUTS RELATED TO MAYA... SO THAT IS NOT FAIR. OR OTHER PROGRAMS, BLENDER, MODO etc... SO YOU SHOULD REALLY CONSIDER PAYING ATTENTION TO OTHER MODELING PACKAGES BECAUSE PEOPLE ARE BUYING YOUR PRODUCT AND GIVING HARD EARNED MONEY FOR THAT, AND THEREFORE EXPECTING A SUPPORT AND EXPLANATION RELATED TO OTHER PROGRAMS. FAVORISING ONE MODEILNG PACKAGE IS NOT PROFESSIONAL.

Thanks for the feedback : ) As stated in the tutorial, maya is used just as reference. Nothing shown was maya specific and not able to reproduce in other packages. We never show a 3D app which demonstrates a specific workflow that alienates users of other programs. We have to use something for the demonstration and I just used maya. However, I think it would be great to also use other apps as you suggested. I started to do this with the UDIM video by showing both maya and modo.

I hope these answers help. Please let me know if you need my to clarify anything.

Cheers,
Wes









 

Integrations Product Manager / Training
wes.mcdermott@allegorithmic.com
Twitter: The3DNinja

I would recommed learning normal maps from one place only, and that place is the polycount forum sticky threads and the normal map section. I found youtube tutorials all well meaning, but confusing at best, often completely wrong or misleading, sometimes using different terminology.
Win 10 64bit | i72630QM quad core | GTX555M (3GB version) | 16GB ram

@WES : Yeah thnks Wes, you helped me, clarified things which I could not find or hear, it's a lot easier and faster to get help from professional like you, and the best way to do it of course, and all congrats on such answering speed on this thread and it's calrity :) ... and since you mentioned height maps was wondering about these two things :

1) If height map gets converted to a normal map for example, and because it's baked originally in SP/SD > by converting it and setting appropriate cordinates ( max uses X+ Y- Z+ ) will it the be workable? In terms of tangent basis? As you said it depends on specific tangent basis on program and the baker, but i really don't know will that height map somehow pick up info/data from SP/SD and it can not be converted to normal map and to be usable in other applications or if setting appropriate settings in converter ( if such exists ) be able to use in target applications??? or any other workflow regarding to converting one type of map to another?
p.s on autodesk site/knowledge section it says : By default, Autodesk® 3ds Max® uses a left-handed tangent space, while maya uses right-handed tangent space, but as you said nothing on mikkt which is widely used.., shame on autodesk :(
and yes finally in 3ds max 2017 they incorporated UDIM support regarding uv's so thumbs up..

2) Second and last Q is : as you said, you would use height map to get info about details in max, nice way to bypass incompatibilities regarding shadind and tangent basis, and then if I use height map instead normal map, would use displacement instead normal bump, right? Will then the workflow, and all other maps, be used in terms as if we were using normal bump/ normal map workflow? In terms of technicalities?

And again i hope I wasn't to harsh regarding my critiques in my last post, my aplologies... but the most important thing is you guys rock, SP/SD/BTM are great programs and it's pleasure to use them...
thnks again for fast response anad again in thnks in advance for I hope anwering these two questions
 :)

@thane144 yeah, you are right, and I was reading, on polycount forum about this, I know about hard edges and shading errors, but was uncertain about confusing infos about one smoothing group and tangent basis shading in target programs, and regarding your statement on youtube > you're totally right, good ones but confusing and wrongon some occasion.. thnks for help and info :)