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GrogMcGee
08-24-2009, 02:41 PM
In case you missed the news today TopoGun has been released
this news qualifies for the OMGZOMGWTFBBQ!!!1111! award for best news this year


http://lh6.ggpht.com/_kyuBN4GsaYo/SpKcMQLSJfI/AAAAAAAADNM/SLi7wzuLZLA/s800/Fullscreen%20capture%2024082009%2095609%20AM.jpg (http://www.topogun.com/)



Overview

What is TopoGun?

TopoGun is a stand-alone resurfacing, and maps baking application. The resurfacing functions in TopoGun will help you modify and/or recreate the edgeflow of your digital 3D models. The maps baking functions, will help you bake various types of texture maps from your high resolution 3D models and then allow you to apply them to your newly created optimized meshes. These texture maps contain information that will help you recover the appearance and features of the original high resolution mesh.

In today's 3D graphics, high quality 3D models, due to their nature, usually have millions of polygons. This is because most of today's 3d models are created from real world scanned models, or they are digital sculptures, created using brush based 3D sculpting applications.
In order to better serve their purposes, 3D models should have a much lower polycount and must provide for a deserved ease of handling. Even more than this, they need to have specific edgeflows in order to be more easily animated, or further detailed.

A lot of artists nowadays create their concepts as 3D models, using brush based sculpting applications. They usually start from basic primitive objects, such as cubes. At a certain point, they need to rework the topology of their models. There are several reasons for doing this: to make the 3D models more animation friendly, to create lowpoly versions for gaming or further sculpting and detailing, or as a way to change the highres topology in order to improve the model's capability of handling the highres information at a lower polygon budget. A resurfacing tool like TopoGun is needed for these purposes.

Furthermore, you can use TopoGun to bake multiple maps out of the original highres meshes. These maps can be used by texture artists when texturing the models. They can also be used by 3D engines in order to preserve the original mesh's features, (i.e., small details that couldn't be recovered after retopologizing due to the limited polycount an engine can render in realtime).

Why use TopoGun?

There are several reasons an artist should consider integrating TopoGun within his/her workflow:

PORTABILITY

TopoGun is a standalone application that will be available for Windows, Mac OS, and Linux operating systems. TopoGun licenses are cross-platform and after buying one, TopoGun can be installed on any of these operating systems.

FRIENDLY INTERFACE

TopoGun supports several widespread viewport navigation models and there's a great chance you'll get used to it quickly. The interface is simple, straightforward and very customizable, giving you the freedom to modify it to fit your needs. You can add/delete interface elements and/or rearrange them easily.

REALTIME FEEDBACK

The newly created geometry, wraps around the highres model in realtime. When you move the retopologized mesh components around, they will stick to the highres mesh's surface.

FRIENDLY FILE FORMATS

TopoGun uses the .obj file format which is becoming more and more of a standard in today's 3D graphics. TopoGun's own file format is XML based and very easy to parse. Furthermore, TopoGun also supports the .ply file format (including per-vertex color information), used extensively in the 3D scanning industry.

MULTITHREADING

TopoGun's baking and subdivision modules are fully multithreaded and up to 256 CPU cores are supported.

NATIVE 32 and 64 BIT CODE

TopoGun is available in 32 and 64 bit executable code. The 64 bit version can access and use much more memory, thus increasing performance and capabilities.

MULTIMILLION 3D MESHES

TopoGun can handle extremely highres 3D data. The polycount limit is set by the available RAM on your system. It uses special rendering techniques to achieve unparalleled highres mesh rendering framerates.

ONE PASS MAPS BAKING

One great feature TopoGun has is one pass maps baking. Instead of baking one map at a time as most of the baking engines do, the types of maps you select are baked in a single pass, thus saving you precious time.

HARDWARE AMBIENT OCCLUSION

TopoGun uses the GPU (Graphics Processing Unit) for baking hardware ambient occlusion maps. The speed that GPU computing and multithreading offers is much greater then the ambient occlusion baking methods used by today's existing software.

32 BIT FLOATING POINT MAPS OUTPUT

TopoGun's maps baking module can export 32 bit floating point .tiff displacement maps and ambient occlusion maps. The advantage of using 32 bit floating point displacement maps are that you don't have to worry about displacement maps parameters such as "displacement amount" and "offset", because the displacement values within the displacement map are real worldspace displacement values. Using the displacement map, as is, in your rendering engine will lead to perfect results, without ever having to tweak any displacement parameters. Another advantage of 32 bit floating point maps are that you can modify them without the fear of getting dithering artifacts, (the dynamic range a 32 bit floating point image has is huge compared to the dynamic range of a regular 8 bit image).

SUBDIVISION SURFACES SUPPORT

TopoGun can actually help you recover all the details the original mesh has, by using the Subdivision extension. A highres subdivided mesh is created, (starting from the retopologized model), and is "wrapped" on the original mesh's surface in order to recover all the fine details. Furthermore, the subdivided mesh can be used to fully recover the intermediate subdivision levels for later use within applications like ZBrush or Mudbox.

from http://www.topogun.com/about/overview.htm
image from http://www.topogun.com

metamesh
08-24-2009, 02:49 PM
wow! there wasn't any news on this for the last 2 or 3 years so i guessed they stopped developing it, that's great news!

GrogMcGee
08-24-2009, 02:53 PM
from what I understand there were some personal things that waylaid the project.

Phrenzy84
08-24-2009, 03:24 PM
well i guess things are back on track.

Glad to see it finally made it to release. Its a great product.

Ballo
08-24-2009, 03:28 PM
This is the best new of the year!!! I guessed that Autodesk buyed it or something similar, but it's a good new that this didn't happen.

Thanks!!

PaulAdams
08-24-2009, 03:30 PM
My god, I had given up hope on this being released! Can't wait to try it..

GatorNic
08-24-2009, 03:56 PM
Great news! Been waiting for it.

I guessed that Autodesk buyed it or something similar, but it's a good new that this didn't happen.


Don't worry thats probably next. :curious:

aghill
08-24-2009, 04:06 PM
Hey cool!

Was actually doing some retopolgizing this weekend, and though that it should be alot easier than live-object snap-crap in maya.

Ill definately try out the demo!

Thanks for the info!

ThomasMahler
08-24-2009, 04:08 PM
Been using the beta for production stuff for over a year now - rock solid, Topogun is by far the best package out there for retopologizing. I know a lot of studios and freelancers already adapted it into their pipelines, but anyway: highly recommended :)

DreamboxDigital
08-24-2009, 04:12 PM
This comes at a good time. Even if a tad late to the party, it is a welcome option because this is a tool which is heavily dedicated to a single task, and does it very well.

rendermaniac
08-24-2009, 04:31 PM
How does this compare to Cyslice? http://www.headus.com/au/cyslice/

Simon

fx81
08-24-2009, 05:32 PM
highly recommended.

i have been using the beta on work for around 3 years and glad to see it finally released.

PedroToledo
08-24-2009, 05:49 PM
Best of luck to Cristi and Topogun!

This is one of my favorite softwares! I can't imagine working without it anymore.

John-S
08-24-2009, 05:50 PM
it states that os x is supported but there is no demo for mac. Any word on this?

SheepFactory
08-24-2009, 05:51 PM
Hah just the other day I was wondering when this will get released. :)

ThomasMahler
08-24-2009, 06:28 PM
How does this compare to Cyslice? http://www.headus.com/au/cyslice/

Simon

No comparison, really. Cyslice is old, clunky and really expensive. Last time I checked it was at 4k USD per license.

TopoGun is pretty much the way to go for retopologizing at the moment.

BUZZFX
08-24-2009, 06:30 PM
This looks interesting but I will wait until a mac version is released and this app can save out UV's before seriously considering it.

BigPixolin
08-24-2009, 06:43 PM
Looks good, Not to fond of their licenses though.

AJ
08-24-2009, 06:47 PM
Finally - a demo! Can't wait to give it a go.

SheepFactory
08-24-2009, 07:00 PM
Looks good, Not to fond of their licenses though.

nodelocked license you can install on win and mac for $100. I dont see whats not to like.

BigPixolin
08-24-2009, 07:03 PM
nodelocked license you can install on win and mac for $100. I dont see whats not to like.

Well I work on 2 pc's daily from 2 different locations that aren't on the same network.
So I would need 2 licenses and then hope nothing ever goes wrong or I never update OS's or hardware.


After making a hardware or operating system change, your license may become invalid. In such a case, you can request another activation code, but this can only be done a limited number of times.

I really don't like that you only have a limited number of activations. How many is limited?

I wonder how the node locked license works with Bootcamp? Does going back and fourth from osx to vista/xp/win7 cause the license to break?

John-S
08-24-2009, 07:04 PM
This looks interesting but I will wait until a mac version is released
I thought the mac version is released and just maybe not a demo?

LordMcGoat
08-24-2009, 07:35 PM
Hooray! Oh man I'm gonna retoplogise so much stuff when I get this. Everything, in fact. Even things with an already decent topology better look out, because I'll be doing them too.

hanskloss
08-24-2009, 07:54 PM
This beats any software release this year. Fantastic news. I thought this will never see the light of day. I know I'll be buying it for home and talking to my managers at work to get one or two licenses. Great work!!

Nemoid
08-24-2009, 07:56 PM
that's fantastic ! app sounds way cool.
Pls don't sell to AD next year. :D

ubermensch76
08-24-2009, 08:08 PM
Curious as to why it took so long ...

Airflow
08-24-2009, 08:22 PM
Been using the beta for production stuff for over a year now - rock solid, Topogun is by far the best package out there for retopologizing. I know a lot of studios and freelancers already adapted it into their pipelines, but anyway: highly recommended :)
Same, this thing is invaluable. I got a video tutorial planned for cgcookie on retopoing in it.

ulb
08-24-2009, 08:50 PM
That software looks really good, I don't do character stuff but it looks cool!

Their web site and online documentation is also amazing, very well done!

Magnus3D
08-24-2009, 09:06 PM
I have also been using the beta since it's early days and it been playing nicely so far, real easy and fast to work with. A smooth operator :)

Btw, you don't have to do character work to have a use of Topogun. Hardsurface models works fine too.

/ Magnus

Venkman
08-24-2009, 10:06 PM
Is it actually available for the Mac? I saw a windows demo on the site, and mention of Mac support, but no indication if the mac version was available for purchase.

toonafish
08-24-2009, 10:08 PM
wow, looks interesting. I just bought 3D coat, has anyone used both and how do they compare ?

AndrewATL
08-24-2009, 10:20 PM
Silo has all those features and more for the same price.

ambient-whisper
08-24-2009, 10:27 PM
Hah just the other day I was wondering when this will get released. :)

yeah, just the other day i went to the site and all i saw was news from 2007. :D

glad to see it released for sure. for 100 bucks its quite a nice option.

SoulVector
08-24-2009, 10:46 PM
Cool! Didn't see this coming. 3DCoat have filled the gap for me some time but I will give this a go and see if the workflow is better.

iatriki
08-24-2009, 10:54 PM
I downloaded the demo. Powerful and quick tools. Interesting product

AshtonWoolley
08-25-2009, 12:25 AM
WOOOOOOOOOOOOO OBAMA!

Finally! No more Crashes! Finally a Release! im going to party.

ambient-whisper
08-25-2009, 12:52 AM
Silo has all those features and more for the same price.you can compare meshes and get a low res model with displacement on it? bake out colour/ ambient occlusion/ etc?

from what a friend showed me of topogun, silo actually is missing quite a bit. not only in terms of tools but intuitiveness as well. often times the sketch retopo gives odd results, versus in topogun the results seem much more predictable.

TopherMartini
08-25-2009, 01:24 AM
Is it actually available for the Mac? I saw a windows demo on the site, and mention of Mac support, but no indication if the mac version was available for purchase.
According to a post by Cristi on the TopoGun Forum (http://forum.topogun.com/viewtopic.php?t=708) Win32 / Win64 are available now and Mac / Linux will be available in the future. Since the license is tied to your computer and not the OS if you have Boot Camp installed you could use TopoGun on Windows until a Mac version is available.

Looks awesome! :thumbsup:

Venkman
08-25-2009, 01:48 AM
According to a post by Cristi on the TopoGun Forum (http://forum.topogun.com/viewtopic.php?t=708) Win32 / Win64 are available now and Mac / Linux will be available in the future. Since the license is tied to your computer and not the OS if you have Boot Camp installed you could use TopoGun on Windows until a Mac version is available.

Looks awesome! :thumbsup:


Thanks for the info. Looks like mac users have something to look forward to.

AndrewATL
08-25-2009, 02:35 AM
you can compare meshes and get a low res model with displacement on it? bake out colour/ ambient occlusion/ etc?

from what a friend showed me of topogun, silo actually is missing quite a bit. not only in terms of tools but intuitiveness as well. often times the sketch retopo gives odd results, versus in topogun the results seem much more predictable.


Yeah, you can do all that, I've been using it for a couple years and haven't had any problems with the retopo.

R10k
08-25-2009, 03:28 AM
I just bought 3D coat, has anyone used both and how do they compare ?

I'd be interested to know this also...

gonkdroid
08-25-2009, 03:52 AM
two words: awe and some

downloading demo now.

ambient-whisper
08-25-2009, 05:04 AM
Yeah, you can do all that, I've been using it for a couple years and haven't had any problems with the retopo.


im not sure if you get what im saying. imagine bringing in a model from zbrush that has been fully modelled but you dont have the levels.


you then retopo this model ( for all we know it was a concept sculpt ), and then you want to subdivide your mesh and do a "project all" like in zbrush so that without needing to extract a displacement and apply it, you have a model with levels but with your new topology. this way now you can create a displacement using not the raytrace methods but rather the same methods that zbrush uses.

a couple of years ago when i was beta testing it, none of that stuff was in there. i remember a lot of display issues that kept comming up with each new version when it came to the whole displacement painting, some soft selection issues, etc. i havent bothered with it since.

also, silo was capping out on bigger models, while topogun can handle huge models from what i've seen thomas mahler do with it. plus its got a 64bit version so i know right off the bat that it can handle more than silo can. when you got a scan, or a zbrush model this is all very important stuff.

im not trying to knock silo. it is a capable app, but this is more of a specialized application and what it specializes in, it goes much further than silo ever did in these areas.

Bucket
08-25-2009, 07:43 AM
Silo has all those features and more for the same price.

Not sure why you are supporting silo... You must not sift through the silo forums much. (it's dead, and people are jumping ship)


Anyways, it's great to see new options available. I too am interested in how 3dcoat topology tools and topogun compare.

MASTERSHOKHAN
08-25-2009, 08:03 AM
Anybody get the demo to work yet?

SheepFactory
08-25-2009, 08:07 AM
Not sure why you are supporting silo... You must not sift through the silo forums much. (it's dead, and people are jumping ship)


Anyways, it's great to see new options available. I too am interested in how 3dcoat topology tools and topogun compare.


http://www.silo3d.com/forum/showthread.php?t=16390

TheRazorsEdge
08-25-2009, 08:34 AM
Looks interesting. I've been using NEX's Quaddraw in conjunction with ZB so far for retopo stuff.

While the pricing seems fair, I'm not too fond of the licensing models either though. Does anybody know what exactly on the computer it's gonna be licensed to?

Cheers!

toonafish
08-25-2009, 08:38 AM
Anybody get the demo to work yet?

Did you get an error that "zlib1.dll" was missing? I did too, but I downloaded it and dropped it in the topogun program folder:
http://sourceforge.net/projects/libpng/files/zlib/1.2.3/zlib123-dll.zip/download

Bucket
08-25-2009, 08:38 AM
http://www.silo3d.com/forum/showthread.php?t=16390

Given your old posts concerning pixologic and the history of silo development. I'm surprised you're giving nc the benefit of the doubt. I knew it was over when nc announced camerabag... And as for the game engine. I'm sure the success of unity has garnered their attention. It'd be something worth looking into if nc had released a more stable product. What can nc bring to the table that unity does not? Unity is stable, easy to use, has a good community and the indie version is cheap. I would give nc the benefit of the doubt if they were say, as talented as Andrew Shpagin...

DarthWayne
08-25-2009, 08:38 AM
Congrats to Cristi on getting Topogun released. I've been using it since virtually day 1 without issue. Its a helluva appp thats close to my heart. I really do hope its a massive success for Cristi after all the long hard work he's put in.

For retopping Topogun is the dogs doodahs. :)

Wayne...

tonytrout
08-25-2009, 08:43 AM
Saw it, tried it, bought it, for $100 seems very reasonable. Never thought it would see the light of day. Logged onto the Topogun forum but you cant post anything there it seems unless you are a very special customer?! Strange!

majid-smiley
08-25-2009, 09:04 AM
double post

AJ
08-25-2009, 09:19 AM
Did you get an error that "zlib1.dll" was missing? I did too, but I downloaded it and dropped it in the topogun program folder:
http://sourceforge.net/projects/libpng/files/zlib/1.2.3/zlib123-dll.zip/downloadAh - thank you!

majid-smiley
08-25-2009, 09:32 AM
im using topogun for a while its really impressive !

Laa-Yosh
08-25-2009, 09:53 AM
Can't give enough lovin' for Topogun! We have been using it for two and a half years now, saved us several times. And for $100 it really is a bargain.

Best wishes for Cristi, he's given so much to the industry.

MASTERSHOKHAN
08-25-2009, 10:16 AM
Thanks Toona! I owe you one!

umblefugly
08-25-2009, 11:53 AM
Both 32 and 64 bit work fine for me on vista. For the 32 bit version tho I had to download zlib1.dll and place it in the Topogun32 folder. HTH

PaulAdams
08-25-2009, 03:08 PM
I've had the demo crash several times, just from deleting an edge. How unfortunate, hoped this would be a good tool to add to my pipeline.

metamesh
08-25-2009, 04:37 PM
i remember the beta being a bit unstable, how is the demo performing?

ChewyPixels
08-25-2009, 04:40 PM
While the pricing seems fair, I'm not too fond of the licensing models...

Same here. Now if the $100 license model allowed running Topogun on 2 separate computers, I would definitely jump in! I guess I will have to stick with Nex in Maya for all my retopo work.

bisenberger
08-25-2009, 09:20 PM
If this would have come out before 3DC I would have jumped on it. As for now I'll keep my eyes on the forum to see how it's recieved, and if anyone compares it with 3DC. Hard to imagine any software developer as agressive as 3DC. See what I mean:
http://www.3d-coat.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=3540
3DC 3.1 just released while I was writing this!

Not sure if this is an argument for or against Silo 3D dying out:
http://www.silo3d.com/forum/showthread.php?t=16390
it was posted 06-29-2009, 10:00 PM and nothing since. NC used to post development info pretty regular.

ThomasMahler
08-26-2009, 01:06 AM
Cristi just posted some more video tutorials for Topogun right here:

http://www.topogun.com/media/videos.htm

Should make it easier to learn the app.

Enjoy :)

philnolan3d
08-26-2009, 03:18 AM
Looks like they saw 3D Coat kicking butt and decided to finally jump out of beta. Would be interesting to see how it compares. Of course I already own 3DC so it would have to be made of magic or something to make me buy it.

Watching the tutorial videos now. It looks like it either can't or has trouble with, creating ngons.

Does it not have any kind of automatic retopo?

MasonDoran
08-26-2009, 09:15 AM
I once did a 1 to 1 comparison by doing some retopo work in both apps, and personally prefered Topogun because it was faster, even with the simpler tool set and less features.

You honestly cannot compare Topogun with 3d Coat as they are not even competing in the same market.

Topogun deliberately does not create nGons as part of its workflow.

If you own 3DC then you wont really need Topogun, but if you prefer Mudbox or Zbrush then this is great. It should be noted that Topogun bakes the best quality texture maps of any other app.

metamesh
08-26-2009, 10:01 AM
i tried the demo at home yesterday and it was so unstable that made it useless...maybe it had something to do with my computer? it was crashing every 5 minutes with simple tools, like adding and edgeloop and trying to slide it etc...anyone having the same problems?
cheers

Airflow
08-26-2009, 12:58 PM
Make sure you import the obj as a referance and not a mesh. I did this first time, its probably some other issue but Im just putting this out there for anyone who never read the manual.

Buexe
08-26-2009, 01:10 PM
While I`m a satisfied user of 3DCoat and especially like the retopo stuff I`d have to say that topogun has this subdivision projection feature which I think is very important and I`ve been missing this functionality in 3DCoat. One can trick the new topology into a ZBrush tool, but having this as a direct and clean option would be more than welcome. I think it is great that both apps come at a great price so that they can pay themselves off in very little time.

spag3d
08-26-2009, 02:27 PM
I tried out the demo and although I experienced some crashes, I am buying this app. I think by using it alongside silo I'll have everything I need for retopo work.

One question:
Are the normal and displacement maps that it generates better / easier to make than zbrush, or should I stick with zbrush for generating those maps?

MasonDoran
08-26-2009, 02:41 PM
Topogun has some advantages when baking maps because the Referance mesh can be medium Res...but you can use a much higher Res mesh (limited by Ram only).

It can also support custom cages for search distances.

spag3d
08-26-2009, 03:13 PM
Topogun has some advantages when baking maps because the Referance mesh can be medium Res...but you can use a much higher Res mesh (limited by Ram only).

It can also support custom cages for search distances.

That sounds very useful! Can't wait to try that out.

Interestingly enough, I am now working on the licensed version and it hasn't crashed on me like the demo did, weird.

chemkid
08-26-2009, 03:18 PM
i tried the demo yesterday and to my surprise i found the possibility to load .ply format as a reference mesh... ok, topogun is no converter, nevertheless i tried to import that lucy (533mb) mesh from stanford 3d repository... i was very suprised that topogun loaded that file without a hickup or anything... so...

does anybody know: inside the demo, it's impossible to save anything, is there an option to save imported reference data back to... say .obj in the full version? hmmm? would be nice...

oh, and there's that option to actually paint your edgeflow ontop of the reference... is that feature able to support a wacom by any means? i didn't find anything and when i tried... topogun didn't respond as expected... ?? (it felt VERY sluggish...)

otherwise, i think it's a nice app and has a "decent" startup splash, too! ;-)

robert

ps: when i switch programs with alt-tab under vista... there's no icon of topogun - just a blank field. normal? aaand - when i switch the upAxis with a subdeed mesh topogun crashes... just noticed... not complaining.

cristihp
08-26-2009, 04:24 PM
i tried the demo yesterday and to my surprise i found the possibility to load .ply format as a reference mesh... ok, topogun is no converter, nevertheless i tried to import that lucy (533mb) mesh from stanford 3d repository... i was very suprised that topogun loaded that file without a hickup or anything... so...

does anybody know: inside the demo, it's impossible to save anything, is there an option to save imported reference data back to... say .obj in the full version? hmmm? would be nice...

oh, and there's that option to actually paint your edgeflow ontop of the reference... is that feature able to support a wacom by any means? i didn't find anything and when i tried... topogun didn't respond as expected... ?? (it felt VERY sluggish...)

otherwise, i think it's a nice app and has a "decent" startup splash, too! ;-)

robert

ps: when i switch programs with alt-tab under vista... there's no icon of topogun - just a blank field. normal? aaand - when i switch the upAxis with a subdeed mesh topogun crashes... just noticed... not complaining.


TopoGun's performance is limited by your computer configuration. Just as a note, the Lucy .ply has 28 million triangles, which is pretty heavy and can lead to some unstable situations and feel sluggish. You can use a Wacom with the Draw tool, I always do that.
Did you use the 64 bit TopoGun version?


As a side note, TopoGun is now on Twitter: http://twitter.com/topogun

PaulAdams
08-26-2009, 04:26 PM
i tried the demo at home yesterday and it was so unstable that made it useless...maybe it had something to do with my computer? it was crashing every 5 minutes with simple tools, like adding and edgeloop and trying to slide it etc...anyone having the same problems?
cheers

Yep, as I said before it's just constant crashing. I've not been able to work longer than 20min inside it. 64bit version with Vista 64. So disappointing, I had my credit card in hand.

Also, does this install desktop or Startbar shortcuts? Maybe I didn't tick the option but I have to navigate directly to the folder to start it.

metamesh
08-26-2009, 04:30 PM
I tried today in another computer and it worked like a charm...so i'm wondering what the problem may be on mine...no idea really... :(

Yep, as I said before it's just constant crashing. I've not been able to work longer than 20min inside it. 64bit version with Vista 64. So disappointing, I had my credit card in hand.

Also, does this install desktop or Startbar shortcuts? Maybe I didn't tick the option but I have to navigate directly to the folder to start it.

chemkid
08-26-2009, 06:06 PM
@cristihp:

i didn't try my wacom with the lucy model... :-DD no way! you're right, it's way to big! i used the 64bit version of topogun and performance of topogun on my system with lucy -on-the-line- was not the question... sorry for any misunderstandings.

(i tried to open the lucy.ply file with some "free" converters... meshlab, etc... before, but these crashed half way throu... i was just surprised it's loading fine in topogun... that's all ;-) )

i tried the drawtool with a much smaller mesh, but even the provided demo mesh (680k) feels sluggish (the 1st seconds i start drawing the line lags then jumps to keep up... then works smooth but on the next stroke it's all the same...) no way i would be trying that with dear lucy ;-)

btw, which wacom driver are you using? i'm on 6.1.1.3 with good'ol win vista 64.

robert

philnolan3d
08-26-2009, 06:18 PM
Is that lucy model available anywhere? I'm looking at the Stanford site and see pics of it but so far no download.

cristihp
08-26-2009, 06:31 PM
@cristihp:

i didn't try my wacom with the lucy model... :-DD no way! you're right, it's way to big! i used the 64bit version of topogun and performance of topogun on my system with lucy -on-the-line- was not the question... sorry for any misunderstandings.

(i tried to open the lucy.ply file with some "free" converters... meshlab, etc... before, but these crashed half way throu... i was just surprised it's loading fine in topogun... that's all ;-) )

i tried the drawtool with a much smaller mesh, but even the provided demo mesh (680k) feels sluggish (the 1st seconds i start drawing the line lags then jumps to keep up... then works smooth but on the next stroke it's all the same...) no way i would be trying that with dear lucy ;-)

btw, which wacom driver are you using? i'm on 6.1.1.3 with good'ol win vista 64.

robert

Another nice feature is the ability to bake PLY per vertex color data. Many professional 3D scanning companies scan per vertex color data too (imagine a head mesh consisting of around 10 million vertices with per vertex color data - it's way better than a texture, as you get color information for every vertex, whitout seams, distortions and varying level of detail, it's just that you can't use the mesh as is in a production environment). TopoGun can bake the vertex color data into a texture, along with the other usual maps (dispmaps, normals, occlusion etc).
Lately we've started texturing our ZBrush models using per vertex colors, then export the tools as VRML files using the 3D Print Exporter plugin, then convert them into PLY's with MeshLab and finally bring them in TopoGun for vertex color baking to the low poly cages.

I don't know what driver version I'm using, I'll get back to you as soon as I get to the office (Monday). But I guess it could be a video card issue, rather than a tablet one. Try installing the latest video drivers and set the video card settings to performance, instead of image quality. I remember a while ago I had a similar issue with a new system.

bisenberger
08-26-2009, 06:43 PM
cristihp, glad to see you're on twitter...make it easy to see what's happening with TopoGun

downlaoded the demo topogun_1.0_w64_setup.exe... looks like it's installing in the (x86) folders

This was at TopoGun on Twitter and is improtant:
For those who run TopoGun on Windows Vista, remember that TopoGun32.exe and TopoGun64.exe should be run under Admin rights.

love the interface:thumbsup:

cristihp
08-26-2009, 06:53 PM
cristihp, glad to see you're on twitter...make it easy to see what's happening with TopoGun

downlaoded the demo topogun_1.0_w64_setup.exe... looks like it's installing in the (x86) folders

I know, the problem has been solved ;)

PixelMachine
08-26-2009, 06:53 PM
cristihp, glad to see you're on twitter...make it easy to see what's happening with TopoGun

downlaoded the demo topogun_1.0_w64_setup.exe... looks like it's installing in the (x86) folders

This was at TopoGun on Twitter and is improtant:

For those who run TopoGun on Windows Vista, remember that TopoGun32.exe and TopoGun64.exe should be run under Admin rights.

The installer should also be launched under Admin rights.

PixelMachine
08-26-2009, 07:06 PM
Is that lucy model available anywhere? I'm looking at the Stanford site and see pics of it but so far no download.

This is the direct link, I think: http://graphics.stanford.edu/data/3Dscanrep/lucy.tar.gz
Found at http://graphics.stanford.edu/data/3Dscanrep/

Have fun! :)

roctavian
08-26-2009, 07:56 PM
I`m really happy Topogun is finally out. Price wise its a no-brainer.
I was curious how much I can push it with the 64 bit demo version, polycount wise.
I managed to load an almost 40 milions polys (quads) reference mesh. :) An obj file exported from Zbrush.
I know, it`s extreme, with 0-3 FPS (on my crappy gaming card) and 8 GB RAM usage, but its there and rock solid.
Even though I don`t recomend retopo such a highpoly mesh, I suppose with a quadro high end card it will be a little faster. :)
Congrats for the nice release!!

http://img218.imageshack.us/img218/3966/topogun40mil.jpg

cristihp
08-26-2009, 07:58 PM
WOW, that IS extreme, mate!!! I've never seen so much geometry handled by TopoGun, I guess I never had the diskspace for such a heavy model! :)
Thanks for the good thoughts :)

chemkid
08-26-2009, 08:30 PM
@cristihp

thanks, that"s very interesting!

Lately we've started texturing our ZBrush models using per vertex colors, then export the tools as VRML files using the 3D Print Exporter plugin, then convert them into PLY's with MeshLab and finally bring them in TopoGun for vertex color baking to the low poly cages.
now that's a workflow... was meshlab stable enough for you? what was the polycount of your models (very low, i guess... since 3d print export was made for 3d printers. these printers still have a limit, don't they?)

as for the wacom, seems you're right, when i try the wacom with normal windows functions (changing windowsmediaplayer window size - i have the same behaviour. i think, it's got something to do with the vista tablet pc functionality... can't turn that off, though. :-(

please check if you got some time...

robert

PixelMachine
08-26-2009, 08:36 PM
@cristihp

thanks, that"s very interesting!


now that's a workflow... was meshlab stable enough for you? what was the polycount of your models (very low, i guess... since 3d print export was made for 3d printers. these printers still have a limit, don't they?)

as for the wacom, seems you're right, when i try the wacom with normal windows functions (changing windowsmediaplayer window size - i have the same behaviour. i think, it's got something to do with the vista tablet pc functionality... can't turn that off, though. :-(

please check if you got some time...

robert


The latest Meshlab is great, very stable and able to load heavy stuff. The meshes are usually heads and have around 3 mil. quads each, 3D Print Exporter it's very good and handles heavy meshes too.

philnolan3d
08-27-2009, 07:05 AM
This is the direct link, I think: http://graphics.stanford.edu/data/3Dscanrep/lucy.tar.gz
Found at http://graphics.stanford.edu/data/3Dscanrep/

Have fun! :)

Oh great, thank you, I just wanted to see how 3DC would compare. It worked out very well for retopo and I was able to sculpt on it too. I made a little video, it was a bit choppy in spots thanks to the video recording it's normally quite smooth though.
http://vimeo.com/6293748

chemkid
08-27-2009, 07:14 AM
@phil

wow! didn"t know that 3d-coat would handle this model so smooth. pretty fast feedback!! 2x wow!!

robert

philnolan3d
08-27-2009, 08:10 AM
Well I imported it as voxels, so the number of polygons doesn't make much difference.

Edit: Here's the .3B (3DC format) version of the Lucy model if you'd like to play with it, it's about 55MB
http://rapidshare.com/files/272038147/lucy_3DC.zip

fx81
08-28-2009, 04:39 AM
Phil, i understand your loyalty towards 3D Coat and i can see you have some bias towards it but i have done retopo in both of these tools and Topogun is superior. it is more efficient, faster and not to mention it has little bit more features for selecting and manipulating the retopo mesh. topogun is also more intuitive than 3d coat.
the first day i used topogun i was able to retopo a full character at good speed and i cant say the same for 3d coat. now 3d coat has lot more features than retopology but if i just consider retopology then topogun is on top.

ambient-whisper
08-28-2009, 04:47 AM
I`m really happy Topogun is finally out. Price wise its a no-brainer.
I was curious how much I can push it with the 64 bit demo version, polycount wise.
I managed to load an almost 40 milions polys (quads) reference mesh. :) An obj file exported from Zbrush.
I know, it`s extreme, with 0-3 FPS (on my crappy gaming card) and 8 GB RAM usage, but its there and rock solid.
Even though I don`t recomend retopo such a highpoly mesh, I suppose with a quadro high end card it will be a little faster. :)
Congrats for the nice release!!

http://img218.imageshack.us/img218/3966/topogun40mil.jpg


thats a cool example :D reality is that most often most users wont need to go past 1 mil with meshes that have been decimated. usually even 500k is enough.

wow regardless. 40 mil of raw polys, nice.

bisenberger
08-28-2009, 10:17 PM
Downloaded the Demo.

For me the workflow is akward. I can't seem to get the rythym for ending a polyline, starting a new line, and connecting. It seems to want to always conect back to the last vert.

I watched the videos that indicated the use of the control key, but just couldn't get things to work like it showed.

Laa-Yosh
08-28-2009, 10:27 PM
Sometimes you have to use the right mouse button.

cristihp
08-28-2009, 11:51 PM
The docs (either online or installed) should make everything clear.

R10k
08-29-2009, 04:55 AM
topogun is also more intuitive than 3d coat.

Really? Wow. I was rolling along in 3D Coat in about 3 seconds, so... I find it hard to believe that's true for the average person. Still, I won't argue the extra options TopoGun has. I may have to check the demo sometime...

roctavian
08-29-2009, 09:17 AM
Really? Wow. I was rolling along in 3D Coat in about 3 seconds, so... I find it hard to believe that's true for the average person. Still, I won't argue the extra options TopoGun has. I may have to check the demo sometime...

You didn`t even tried the demo?

bisenberger
08-29-2009, 01:51 PM
I tried the Topogun demo (also tried the right click, and viewed the online docs). For me Topogun is not nearly as intuitive as 3DC for retopo. I realize that everyone is different and would recommend to download the demo of both and compare and see which retopo works best for you.

As for the other features of Topogun I have not tried them yet.

R10k
08-29-2009, 02:25 PM
You didn`t even tried the demo?

Aside from saying, "I may have to check the demo sometime...", which pretty much gives away that I haven't, I didn't rush and do so because the comment I quoted was about the usability of 3D Coat, not how good Topogun is.

SorinLupu
08-30-2009, 10:58 AM
News about license system on Topogun http://twitter.com/topogun

metamesh
08-30-2009, 12:38 PM
topogun looks great to me, i keep playing with the demo, the only problem is that it crashes SO MUCH. if i undo, 50% of the time it crashes, if i do this, it crashes, do that, it crashes...at work i tried the 32bits demo in windows xp64 and was pretty stable, then i tried the 64 bits on XP64 and it crashed quite a lot...at home in xp32 is a nightmare...i wonder where the problem is, since people here dont seem to have problems with it, id like to buy it but im not sure i will be able to use it..

iatriki
08-30-2009, 01:47 PM
@metamesh- I have a 32bit machine and the demo seems stable. I didn't have any crashes.

Gwot
08-30-2009, 05:30 PM
Can you import multiple meshes and retopo over those as one, or even multiple pieces in topogun? I haven't used the beta since last fall and will probably wait till the mac demo is out to try again, so if anyone could answer that I'd be grateful.

I'd be curious to see some baking results too if anyone has em.

Cheers!

bisenberger
08-30-2009, 06:55 PM
Gwot...you can load a reference obj that contains multiple objects (called groups in Topogun) and toggle object (group) display off/on independently for retopo.

Gwot
08-30-2009, 07:04 PM
Thanks bisenberger! Good to know!

philnolan3d
08-30-2009, 07:08 PM
Can you create seperate meshes? Like suppose it's some space ship or something and instead of attaching a nurnie physically I have just jammed it into the model. Or if my rowboat model has a machine gun and I'd like to retopo it so that the machine gun is a separate, detachable object? Is there a "layers" type panel that lists the individual objects?

cristihp
08-30-2009, 08:54 PM
Can you create seperate meshes? Like suppose it's some space ship or something and instead of attaching a nurnie physically I have just jammed it into the model. Or if my rowboat model has a machine gun and I'd like to retopo it so that the machine gun is a separate, detachable object? Is there a "layers" type panel that lists the individual objects?

Yes, you can create separate pieces of geometry attached to different reference mesh groups. You can toggle reference mesh and scene geometry groups visibility.

philnolan3d
08-30-2009, 10:27 PM
One more... Does it play nicely with LightWave? It won't save out LWO files will it?

cristihp
08-30-2009, 11:21 PM
If Lightwave supports obj files, like just about (or almost) any 3D application, TopoGun should play nicely with Lightwave too.

Lone Deranger
08-31-2009, 05:37 AM
cristihp: Is there an ETA on the OSX version?

cristihp
08-31-2009, 06:46 AM
Right after the next update, which will include some very important features (such as the ONLINE license model and possibly an EDUCATIONAL license too), the next step will be recompiling TopoGun for Linux (that has been done before, so I don't expect any serious issues: http://www.topogun.com/Img/01_tglinux/gnome.jpg and http://www.topogun.com/Img/01_tglinux/kde.jpg).
The OSX build should be finished pretty easily too, since TopoGun's source code (including the UI part) is fully cross-platform. I can't give an estimate for that though, I hope some early builds will be available this year.
One think that it's worth to mention is that TopoGun licenses are OS independent, so if someone buys one, it should work on any build.

Lone Deranger
08-31-2009, 07:02 AM
Thank you for the reply cristihp!
That all sounds really good! Well done on the platform independant nature of your enterprise. It's a win-win for the entire CG-community.


Right after the next update, which will include some very important features (such as the ONLINE license model and possibly an EDUCATIONAL license too), the next step will be recompiling TopoGun for Linux (that has been done before, so I don't expect any serious issues: http://www.topogun.com/Img/01_tglinux/gnome.jpg and http://www.topogun.com/Img/01_tglinux/kde.jpg).
The OSX build should be finished pretty easily too, since TopoGun's source code (including the UI part) is fully cross-platform. I can't give an estimate for that though, I hope some early builds will be available this year.
One think that it's worth to mention is that TopoGun licenses are OS independent, so if someone buys one, it should work on any build.

jCastile
09-03-2009, 09:10 PM
i'm confused. re-topologizing sounds like arranging the edge-flows. I'm just a beginning organic modeller and I get dinged on five poly poles all the time yet the first screenshot I see has a woppin large five pointer in the crotchal area...

GrogMcGee
09-03-2009, 09:39 PM
i'm confused. re-topologizing sounds like arranging the edge-flows. I'm just a beginning organic modeller and I get dinged on five poly poles all the time yet the first screenshot I see has a woppin large five pointer in the crotchal area...

Retopologiziong is the process where by a low(er) resolution mesh is made that will support the detail (via bump or displacement mapping) of the high resolution mesh. Poles, etc are an unavoidable consequence of edge flow direction changes. The goal is to put them in places where they either result in a beneficial smoothing artifact or are nearly invisible due to there location. Check this out for more ifo: http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?f=25&t=38469

philnolan3d
09-03-2009, 09:42 PM
I'm guessing you're talking about a point where 5 polygons meet. My teachers in school called that a 5-star so that's what I've called it ever since. True you do want to avoid these as much as possible, but it's pretty much impossible to get good poly flow without having a couple here and there. The trick is to place them in an area that isn't going to bend too much so that they won't give any weird creasing.

WyattHarris
09-03-2009, 10:14 PM
One more... Does it play nicely with LightWave? It won't save out LWO files will it?
Don't know if you've seen it before but you might want to check out this tool. Check the links for Sketch Mesh.

http://www.newtek.com/forums/showthread.php?t=98562

philnolan3d
09-03-2009, 10:30 PM
Funny you mention that, I was just looking at that page earlier today. Those Japanese guys come up with some amazing LightWave plugins.

jCastile
09-03-2009, 10:33 PM
thx for links :cheers:

WyattHarris
09-03-2009, 10:33 PM
I remember the announcement for it a few weeks back but forgot about trying it till today. I just added the plug-in and heck if it doesn't work exactly as advertised. Easiest retopo tool I've ever seen and free.

philnolan3d
09-03-2009, 10:53 PM
The down side being that as much as I love LightWave, it wasn't made to handle millions of polygons. Not until LW CORE anyway.

Edit: Oh wait these are mac only. There's a first. I may have to install LightWave on my hackintosh just to try this out.

AnimAitor
09-04-2009, 01:13 AM
mmmh, can't you do the same thing with ZBrush? Or am I missing something?

philnolan3d
09-04-2009, 01:51 AM
I've never used the retopo in ZB but I hear a lot of people complaining about it.

Djampa
09-04-2009, 01:56 AM
Really a great software.

Congratulations for the release and good luck for them and good work for us ;)

Cheers,

alshakno
09-04-2009, 07:18 AM
is it able to import another mesh and continue retopology by it?

btw i bet the next release of Zbrush and Modo will kick ass in this field

Maph
09-04-2009, 09:09 AM
alshakno: Topogun also reads in OBJ's as a scene format, not only tgs. So you can work out your building blocks for the retopo in app x, export as obj, and load it in as a scene in Topogun together with your ref mesh.
Or you can just as easily export your current retopo as an obj, make some changes in app x, and re-import into topogun to continue your session. :)

I've been using Topogun for the past two years now, and I wouldn't consider having the thought of leaving it out of my pipeline now. Great job Cristi! ;)

alshakno
09-04-2009, 09:17 AM
Thanks Cristi
fair enough :)

AnimAitor
09-04-2009, 10:39 AM
I never used TopoGun so I wanted to ask is someone know the differences between this and NEX for Maya. NEX has also a very nice quad draw feature that let's you create new geometry on top of another mesh. With NEX and ZBrush don't see the point of TopoGun besides the cheap price...

TeZzy
09-05-2009, 07:16 AM
assuming you don't own maya then topogun would be perfect for doing retopo work imo

tonytrout
09-05-2009, 09:07 AM
I never used TopoGun so I wanted to ask is someone know the differences between this and NEX for Maya. NEX has also a very nice quad draw feature that let's you create new geometry on top of another mesh. With NEX and ZBrush don't see the point of TopoGun besides the cheap price...

For $100 bucks I bought it after hearing good things about it sight unseen. I've used zbrush and silo for retopo before, but this is the type of tool I like. Its just simple and straight forward, and designed just for this job. I allways prefer dedicated tools like this rather than wading through the morass of maya. I was able to retopo a mesh after half an hour of fiddling around figuring out the tool. Retopo is just a tedious job at the best of times but Topogun just does what it does and does it without fuss.

Think of it as the 'headus UV' of retopology, another great dedicated fast tool.

AnimAitor
09-05-2009, 10:45 AM
Thanks tonytrout, but I guess you people haven't tried NEX yet. It might be just a little more money than TopoGun but if you do modeling and use Maya, NEX is the first thing you need.

TheRazorsEdge
09-05-2009, 11:32 AM
I've got NEX, am using it all the time and couldnt imagine working in Maya without it and I still got Topogun. Actually I was in the Beta, but never really had the time to test it thourougly since whenever I wanted to get started, my license had expired. lol But now that its out, I pretty much immediately jumped on. This is a really great piece of software and the price just cant be beat! I actually got 2 nodelock licenses, an additional one for my laptop. That's how impressed I am with this tool.

Topogun is actually quite a bit faster and more comfortable to work with than NEX Quaddraw. Just to state one thing, something you cant do with NEX is to recreate subdiv levels actually compatible with the algorithms in ZB and MB, so no need to "Project All" or create a displacement between meshes and still have to clean up the remaining mess. Simply import the Topogun high res on top of the ZB/MB high level mesh etc. Also, you are not limited to the pathetic amount of polys Maya can handle.

As far as crashes go, Topogun does so once in a while , but does an Autosave in a backup format, while NEX also crashes Maya quite a bit and I never know what did it this time. lol

Whether in Maya with NEX or in ZB, I absolutely hated retopo up until now, but Topogun really makes it a breeze and a lot more endurable.

Anyways, here's hoping this might help some people make a decision. Just try the demo.

Cheers!

AnimAitor
09-05-2009, 12:21 PM
That's what I was looking for TheRazorsEdge, someone with first hand TopoGun and NEX experience. Thanks a bunch for clearing all up. We do quite a bit of retopo at the company so I will suggest the modeling people we have here to give TopoGun demo a try.

GrogMcGee
09-05-2009, 04:14 PM
A simple reason why Maya + nex is not equal to topogun would be the how well maya can handle extreamly high polygon meshes. Maya was never meant to handle 40+ million polygon meshes.

Example I can take a mesh in mudbox to close to 120 million triangles and still work with it interactively, ie, over 30 frames. Maya can't even approach that kind of level.

TheRazorsEdge
09-06-2009, 08:34 AM
.....Thanks a bunch for clearing all up......

Mondai nai! :)

cristihp
09-11-2009, 02:10 PM
Hi,
TopoGun 1.05 release candidate client can be found here:
www.topogun.com/kit/topogun_1.05_w32_setup.exe (http://www.topogun.com/kit/topogun_1.05_w32_setup.exe) 32 bit windows
www.topogun.com/kit/topogun_1.05_w64_setup.exe (http://www.topogun.com/kit/topogun_1.05_w64_setup.exe) 64 bit windows

Very important!!! Uninstall any previous version of TopoGun before proceeding to install TopoGun 1.05.
Those who have a nodelocked license can use their activation codes in TopoGun 1.05 too. The nodelocked licensing model is now called "Offline".
The floating licensing model is the same in TopoGun 1.05 .
The upgrade is free of charge for existing customers. Those who own a nodelocked license will be able to switch to the online model free of charge.

Changelog:

- TopoGun now works fine under limited accounts on Vista. The installer should be launched from the user account you want to install TopoGun for. You should NOT run the installer under Admin rights, although you will be asked later for an Admin password. Also, after installation, TopoGun should not be run under Admin rights either. Remember that TopoGun will be available only from the user account it was installed for.
- Online licensing model (for single licenses, the user will be able to take his license anywhere and activate it if he has an Internet connection, the single user licenses are now portable, but still single user based).
- Fixed alot of bugs
- Autosave feature: You can always recover the scene prior to the crash moment. The scene is automatically saved in the same folder as the original scene, using the same file name, except the extension, which is .bak. All you have to do is change the extension from .bak to .tgs and load the file as a normal scene.
- Bridge tool improved rendering
- Improved startup time

Cheers,
Cristi

metamesh
09-11-2009, 04:14 PM
tried the latest build, works like a charm now, awesome...

PedroToledo
09-11-2009, 04:45 PM
This is great, Cristi :) I will download the upgrade when I get home.
And I'll let the IT folks know about it too.

Thanks!

cristihp
09-11-2009, 04:52 PM
Well it's still a release candidate, if everything works fine next week it's gonna be officially released.

ndog
09-11-2009, 04:54 PM
Those who own a nodelocked license will be able to switch to the online model free of charge.



If we have the "Offline" model in the original release is it an option to continue with the "Offline" model for the newest release or will we have to change to the "Online" model?

tonytrout
09-11-2009, 05:04 PM
Upgrades, Choice

cristihp
09-11-2009, 05:05 PM
You can continue with the offline activation method, switching to online is not mandatory.

AdamBaroody
09-13-2009, 08:23 PM
I was on the Topogun beta for a good deal of time, and put it to good use.

Its an essential tool. I can't imagine not having it in my pipeline.

I dont recommend trying to retopo millions and millions of polygons. Use a reasonable level as your "reference mesh"

As for stability... It has its quirks like everything else. The usual save behaviors apply. Save often, and I recommend in OBJ format. This way your data is safe from any corruption and It can be imported into any of the major software packages. I find I do this as part of my regular work flow. You can make any adjustments to the model outside of topogun, then bring it back and conform those external changes, then continue to work within topogun. Lots of options. Topogun is a very specialized tool and yet very flexible in how it fits into your workflow.

Its a great tool, and i've yet to find anything I've felt as comfortable in.

Congrats Cristi! Its nice to see your hard work reach a wider audience.

-Adam Baroody

hanskloss
09-13-2009, 09:08 PM
Thanks tonytrout, but I guess you people haven't tried NEX yet. It might be just a little more money than TopoGun but if you do modeling and use Maya, NEX is the first thing you need.

I seriously don't understand all the fuss around NEX. I have exactly 4 custom scripts to help me with modeling in Maya and I am as efficient as any guy I know using NEX. TopoGun can handle multi million poly meshes when retopologizing. I have a dual Xeon setup with 32GB RAM and dual Quadro 4600 in SLI and Maya chokes on 22 million polygons. I can't imagine doing any kind of retopo job in Maya with NEX.

cristihp
09-13-2009, 09:09 PM
Thanks everybody for the kind words, I'm so glad for the HUGE positive feedback I've been getting since the launch, I hope I won't disappoint anybody with the future planned features.

bmullen
09-13-2009, 10:50 PM
Greetings all,

I'm having a problem using the demo of Topogun 1.05 with my obj file from ZBrush 3.5. The obj I export from ZBrush crashes Topogun when I try to load it as a reference? The model is only about 1.7 million polys. I'm using Boot Camp, Win XP SP3. If I load the obj into Modo first, save a new obj, and then Topogun, I don't get a crash. Just wondering if anyone else has experienced a similar problem since 3.5 was released?

..Works great so far once I have the reference mesh loaded! :)

TiA!

tharrell
09-13-2009, 11:11 PM
Greetings all,

I'm having a problem using the demo of Topogun 1.05 with my obj file from ZBrush 3.5. The obj I export from ZBrush crashes Topogun when I try to load it as a reference? The model is only about 1.7 million polys. I'm using Boot Camp, Win XP SP3. If I load the obj into Modo first, save a new obj, and then Topogun, I don't get a crash. Just wondering if anyone else has experienced a similar problem since 3.5 was released?

..Works great so far once I have the reference mesh loaded! :)

TiA!

You probably shouldn't be bringing such a heavy mesh in for retopo work, to be honest. It's not like you're getting all your pores and stuff anyhow... you're just going for the basic shape, then you can bring the retopoed mesh back into ZBrush to project the fine detail.

I'd recommend exporting your mesh out at sub-d level 2 or 3 and you probably won't run into this problem. You want to have enough info to get an accurate silhouette, but any more is just slowing down your viewport and workflow.

For reference, I usually subdivide a model somewhere around 9 million polys in zbrush, but export sub-d 2 or 3 in the vicinity of 12,000 -- 40,000 polys for retopo work. Again, just enough polys to accurately describe my silhouette.

Edit:

I'm also in the habit of sketching out complex topology areas via polypainting in zbrush, and saving it as a reference texture map. Just a little bit of planning speeds up my work enormously.

Topogun's great, ZBrush is great. You got a big toolbox: use 'em all :)

Hope this helps,

--T

AdamBaroody
09-13-2009, 11:39 PM
Greetings all,

I'm having a problem using the demo of Topogun 1.05 with my obj file from ZBrush 3.5. The obj I export from ZBrush crashes Topogun when I try to load it as a reference? The model is only about 1.7 million polys. I'm using Boot Camp, Win XP SP3. If I load the obj into Modo first, save a new obj, and then Topogun, I don't get a crash. Just wondering if anyone else has experienced a similar problem since 3.5 was released?

..Works great so far once I have the reference mesh loaded! :)

TiA!

Are you using the 32bit or the 64bit? I would also recommend using a lower poly count for your reference mesh. Its best to work from garbage geometry at first, build to a certain detail level, retopo... then sculpt from there.

I would bring a lower sub div level into topogun and work from there. It will be better from a performance stand point, and it will still have plenty of reference detail to build new topology on.

For example, my last reference object was 824,576 polygons. And that was plenty for a humanoid.

-Adam

bmullen
09-13-2009, 11:39 PM
Hey Trey,

Thank you for your response, it definitely helps. :)

I still get a crash, even at ~27k from ZBrush. I can always just run it through another app to get a working obj reference file. I'm still wondering if it's a problem specific to my setup or if others have experienced the same with 3.5.

philnolan3d
09-13-2009, 11:44 PM
You probably shouldn't be bringing such a heavy mesh in for retopo work, to be honest. It's not like you're getting all your pores and stuff anyhow... you're just going for the basic shape, then you can bring the retopoed mesh back into ZBrush to project the fine detail.

To be clear topogun only creates the low res mesh, right? It doesn't actually bake the normal map I mean. I just ask because if it does bake then that's a reason to have very fine details in the mesh.

tharrell
09-13-2009, 11:47 PM
Hey Trey,

Thank you for your response, it definitely helps. :)

I still get a crash, even at ~27k from ZBrush. I can always just run it through another app to get a working obj reference file. I'm still wondering if it's a problem specific to my setup or if others have experienced the same with 3.5.

Kinda strange. I haven't tested ZBrush 3.5's obj export to topogun yet -- just got my 3.5 update last night. I know they did some weird things with .obj scale and auto-saving of .mat files along with .bmp textures (bmp? in 2009? wow.) that might be causing issues.

Out of curiosity: do you have any overlapping uvs? Try exporting after generating an AUVtile map.

I'll test it tonight and see if I can reproduce (also on Boot-camped Macs in addition to my PCs).

--T

tharrell
09-13-2009, 11:50 PM
To be clear topogun only creates the low res mesh, right? It doesn't actually bake the normal map I mean. I just ask because if it does bake then that's a reason to have very fine details in the mesh.

It can bake out higher res mesh details, but in this case the guy's got ZBrush that's more suited for the task, in my opinion.

Just my workflow. Others might disagree :)

Doesn't sound like the mesh resolution is the reason for crashing though, so the point is likely moot.

--T

bmullen
09-14-2009, 12:00 AM
To be clear topogun only creates the low res mesh, right? It doesn't actually bake the normal map I mean. I just ask because if it does bake then that's a reason to have very fine details in the mesh.

Good point Phil, I was about to post about that too.? In the Pipeline integration section of the docs, it points to an external uv editor and then back to Topogun to bake maps. But, I can't export the new topology from the demo version to create a uv map so no chance to test the baking. Based on the work flow Trey described, I'm guessing he bakes once he's back inside ZBrush?

Trey - I tried the AUVtile map, still crashes. :/ Please let me know how you make out.
Adam - Thank you. and I'm using 32-bit Win XP on Boot Camp.

AdamBaroody
09-14-2009, 12:00 AM
Hey Trey,

Thank you for your response, it definitely helps. :)

I still get a crash, even at ~27k from ZBrush. I can always just run it through another app to get a working obj reference file. I'm still wondering if it's a problem specific to my setup or if others have experienced the same with 3.5.

Its interesting. I dont know what Zbrush could be doing other then perhaps exporting groups, rather than a single mesh. Are you exporting it at some odd scale perhaps? Is modo stripping the UVs? I'm curious where the difference is.

Ordibble-Plop
09-14-2009, 12:11 AM
I dont know what Zbrush could be doing other then perhaps exporting groups, rather than a single mesh.

I don't have Topogun but did notice last night that a tool exported from ZB as obj opened as multiple objects in XSI - each polygroup was a separate object (I don't recall it doing this by default in 3.1 but could be mistaken).

Anyway, to eliminate all possibilities, perhaps check if this is the issue. I can't remember now, but the exporter menu in ZB should have options to deal with this, or make your tool all one polygroup.

bmullen
09-14-2009, 12:40 AM
Ah! Ok.. I forgot to go into Polygroups and Group Visible before export.. Thanks guys!

tharrell
09-14-2009, 03:16 AM
Good point Phil, I was about to post about that too.? In the Pipeline integration section of the docs, it points to an external uv editor and then back to Topogun to bake maps. But, I can't export the new topology from the demo version to create a uv map so no chance to test the baking. Based on the work flow Trey described, I'm guessing he bakes once he's back inside ZBrush?

Trey - I tried the AUVtile map, still crashes. :/ Please let me know how you make out.
Adam - Thank you. and I'm using 32-bit Win XP on Boot Camp.

Yeah, I take a medium-low sculpt with garbage topology into topogun and make a new animation-quality mesh, then I bring that back into ZBrush, subdivide, and project all my detail (and textures too, sometimes) back onto my retopologized mesh by appending it as a subtool and using "project all".

If you're not in the habit of making watertight models (mouth, eyesockets, ear canals), it can take a little bit to get used to what makes ZBrush explode and throw points all over the place, but I've found it's the most comfortable way to work for me.

I've actually got a video up on my site about my retopo workflow... I did the retopo work in Maya in this case, but the same workflow applies to topogun as well (at least the way I do things). Sometimes you take garbage geo too far (I even got into texturing on this example), or you lose your lowest sub-d levels when ZBrush flakes. This'll help you transfer everything onto a clean mesh.

Longish video that's pretty detailed. Hope it helps :) But again, it's just the way that I do stuff. Lots of different approaches to take. Crappy basemesh (not even sure where it came from in this case) that got tweaked a little in Maya.

Not the greatest model or texturing job on earth, but the workflow for projecting is really the point of the thing and I go really methodically to get controllable results.

http://www.treyharrell.com/v3/?p=91

--T

ambient-whisper
09-14-2009, 05:40 AM
thats similar to how i do things as well.

what i found works well is to prepare your model before projecting all.

mask out areas that will spike out, then turn on backfacing and mask out areas that you dont want to be affected.

its usually the open borders that screw up, so making them out will help loads.

( usually its good to create a morph target too, before projecting so you can morph back the bad areas.

this usually saves me lots of time as i dont have to fix areas much.

cristihp
09-14-2009, 11:13 AM
Greetings all,

I'm having a problem using the demo of Topogun 1.05 with my obj file from ZBrush 3.5. The obj I export from ZBrush crashes Topogun when I try to load it as a reference? The model is only about 1.7 million polys. I'm using Boot Camp, Win XP SP3. If I load the obj into Modo first, save a new obj, and then Topogun, I don't get a crash. Just wondering if anyone else has experienced a similar problem since 3.5 was released?

..Works great so far once I have the reference mesh loaded! :)

TiA!

You shouldn't click the "Group Visible" before exporting from ZBrush, you can just disable the "Grp" option in the Export options group. You can also disable the "Txt" option, in order to drop the reference mesh uv coordinates and get a lighter obj file to load.
However, importing multi-group meshes from ZBrush 3.1 works just fine and as soon as we get the 3.5 update I'll let you know about ZBrush 3.5 too.
The mesh you've been trying to load is by no means heavy for TopoGun, so I suspect the problem could be the ZBrush 3.5 way of exporting obj meshes (and that's easy to fix as it was long time ago with 3DSMAX obj's), or the Boot Camp, which needs a little bit further investigation.
I remember someone stating he couldn't bake hardware ambient occlusion maps when running TopoGun on Boot Camp and it turned out he was using some experimental video drivers TopoGun wasn't compatible with.

To be clear topogun only creates the low res mesh, right? It doesn't actually bake the normal map I mean. I just ask because if it does bake then that's a reason to have very fine details in the mesh.

TopoGun does handle highres meshes, and does create highres subdivision meshes and bakes maps from highres reference geometry, these facts are stated clearly in a couple places, such as the website, docs, videos and screenshots.
Tharrell said there's no reason to bring a too heavy mesh in TopoGun when retopologizing, and I fully agree with him. However, when baking the maps/subdivision data things change.

Cheers,
Cristi

bmullen
09-14-2009, 03:02 PM
You shouldn't click the "Group Visible" before exporting from ZBrush, you can just disable the "Grp" option in the Export options group. You can also disable the "Txt" option, in order to drop the reference mesh uv coordinates and get a lighter obj file to load.
However, importing multi-group meshes from ZBrush 3.1 works just fine and as soon as we get the 3.5 update I'll let you know about ZBrush 3.5 too.
The mesh you've been trying to load is by no means heavy for TopoGun, so I suspect the problem could be the ZBrush 3.5 way of exporting obj meshes (and that's easy to fix as it was long time ago with 3DSMAX obj's), or the Boot Camp, which needs a little bit further investigation.
I remember someone stating he couldn't bake hardware ambient occlusion maps when running TopoGun on Boot Camp and it turned out he was using some experimental video drivers TopoGun wasn't compatible with.

Cheers,
Cristi

Thank you for your reply Cristi.

It looks like it has nothing to do with the group settings. I had neglected to write that I tried exporting with Grp and Tex off (which was still crashing Topogun) before trying Group Visible. The problem appears to be when you export with Colorize on under Polypaint. The ZBrush Obj files appends a block of MRGB data.

--
Thank you for the info, Trey, Martin. I'll be sure to check out that video.

cristihp
09-14-2009, 03:19 PM
Greetings all,

I'm having a problem using the demo of Topogun 1.05 with my obj file from ZBrush 3.5. The obj I export from ZBrush crashes Topogun when I try to load it as a reference? The model is only about 1.7 million polys. I'm using Boot Camp, Win XP SP3. If I load the obj into Modo first, save a new obj, and then Topogun, I don't get a crash. Just wondering if anyone else has experienced a similar problem since 3.5 was released?

..Works great so far once I have the reference mesh loaded! :)

TiA!

Well, the mistery has been solved.
Pixologic did a great thing including per vertex color data when exporting obj's from ZBrush 3.5.
Unfortunately, that's why TopoGun crashes (it tries to parse the vertex color data, but it looks like the data is coded in a special way).
I'll add support for obj per vertex color data asap (TopoGun already supports per vertex color data from ply files), and you'll be able to bake Polypaint maps in TopoGun.
Until then, make sure you uncheck the Colorize option when exporting obj files from ZBrush 3.5.

metamesh
09-14-2009, 10:33 PM
mmm...in 1.05, it seems like the preferences menu is broken? i try to open it but nothing happens...used to work in 1.0...anyone else with the same problem?

cristihp
09-15-2009, 12:09 AM
Hi,
I've uploaded a new TopoGun 1.05 build. The Preferences shortcut was fixed. Also, TopoGun now supports ZBrush 3.5 per vertex color data (created via PolyPaint).
Make sure you check the Colorize option in ZBrush 3.5, before exporting the model as an .obj.
TopoGun will automatically recognize the vertex colors stored within the obj reference mesh and render them in the viewport, on the reference mesh. You can also bake the vertex colors on a texture, via the TopoGun Bake extension.
TopoGun 1.05 release candidate client can be found here:
www.topogun.com/kit/topogun_1.05_w32_setup.exe (http://www.topogun.com/kit/topogun_1.05_w32_setup.exe) 32 bit windows
www.topogun.com/kit/topogun_1.05_w64_setup.exe (http://www.topogun.com/kit/topogun_1.05_w64_setup.exe) 64 bit windows
The current build number is 3368.
Cheers.

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