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Old 10-01-2012, 05:25 PM   #1
sneather
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Need Help with Baking AO...

As the title states. I want to save some render time, and bake all the AO on an imported CAD product from my client.

I understand the basics on how to go about setting up the process, but the results are horrid. Every polygon gets some dark outlines, which is NOT what I want.

Please tell me: Are there very specific Bake settings that which I need to pay close attention???

Thanks!
 
Old 10-01-2012, 06:36 PM   #2
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Is "Bake Object" potentially a better solution?
 
Old 10-01-2012, 06:47 PM   #3
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Odds are you will need to fix your UVs in order to get a good result in your baked texture--however you might want to try a little trick, and that is activating "bake AO to vertex map" rather than to a bitmap. This will only be useful however if your meshes have a dense point count.

After baking the AO this way you will have a vertex map tag on your object.

Add a vertex shader into your diffusion channel.

Load the vertex map into that shader.

Check luminance, specular and reflection in the diff. channel.

Then render
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:04 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoelOtron
Odds are you will need to fix your UVs in order to get a good result in your baked texture--however you might want to try a little trick, and that is activating "bake AO to vertex map" rather than to a bitmap. This will only be useful however if your meshes have a dense point count.

After baking the AO this way you will have a vertex map tag on your object.

Add a vertex shader into your diffusion channel.

Load the vertex map into that shader.

Check luminance, specular and reflection in the diff. channel.

Then render


Thanks for the tips!
I'm in the middle of processing a Bake Object test. For whatever the reason, my initial down and dirty test proved to be much, much better than anything I was achieving with Bake Texture. But I have no earthly idea why...
As for the model(s) - they are complicated, and filled with dense N-Gons & poly tri/quads. I'm 100% out of luck if I have to modify any UV parameters, as I wouldn't even know where to start.

I may try your Vertex idea, as well, just to see what that does. I will, however, say that in the past I have tried, in vain, to hand paint vertex maps to help position textures. It's always limited by the crazy polygon geometry of the imported .OBJ model files. Unfortunately!
 
Old 10-01-2012, 09:00 PM   #5
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I just tried the Vertex Map trick, and you know, it's WAY better than the results (if you want to call them that) I was getting with bitmapped texture / object bake options.

It's still got some real issues where the polygons are badly aligned. Any idea if there are any tricks to working out those kinds of kinks?

Thanks, again!
 
Old 10-01-2012, 11:49 PM   #6
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Unfortunately,best you can do here is use the brush tool and custom paint the maps where you need to tweak.
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Old 10-02-2012, 12:32 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JoelOtron
Unfortunately,best you can do here is use the brush tool and custom paint the maps where you need to tweak.


Ack! I was afraid of that. I always have a terrible time trying to get usable results from hand-painting vertex maps on my crazy poly-tri models. But, at least the Vertex Map approach to baking the AO is a huge step forward. You were quite right. I wonder why the results are so much better for that, than when trying to create the equivalent bitmap image?

Thanks, again.
 
Old 10-02-2012, 09:05 AM   #8
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Sounds like a job for Paul's Topology maps - do you need a solution immediately? this tool looks like it's going to be v. useful!

http://www.tools4d.com/?p=3247
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Old 10-02-2012, 05:41 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anadin
Sounds like a job for Paul's Topology maps - do you need a solution immediately? this tool looks like it's going to be v. useful!

http://www.tools4d.com/?p=3247


Unfortunately, I need to find a good solution immediately. However, the plugin looks fantastic. Although, I don't know when it's finally going to be released, nor when it will be ported to the Mac (I think it's supposed to be Windows only at first).
 
Old 10-03-2012, 05:13 PM   #10
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What is your final output? Is it for a realtime engine, or are you doing product visualization? For proper baking you need good uv's and even then the process is really slow. If your keeping it inside of Cinema the vertex map may be your best bet. However, if your going to bring it out to another app then uv's are probably your best bet.
 
Old 10-03-2012, 08:38 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy1010
What is your final output? Is it for a realtime engine, or are you doing product visualization? For proper baking you need good uv's and even then the process is really slow. If your keeping it inside of Cinema the vertex map may be your best bet. However, if your going to bring it out to another app then uv's are probably your best bet.


Thanks. No realtime. This is for high-quality product visualization. So, not much room for error. Unfortunately.
I've already got my materials / lighting process quite well refined. The only part that lags, is the necessary AO. On an individual basis, I don't so much care. But I have a massive workload coming my way before the end of the year. So, I'm trying to find good ways to shave more and more render seconds per frame.
 
Old 10-04-2012, 01:52 PM   #12
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It's better to bake in Modo or Zbrush. The c4d ao doesn't bake very well, it's almost impossible to get results without artifacts.
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Old 10-04-2012, 01:59 PM   #13
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It has improved in speed with R14 and if you look around there are some good tutorials on youtube that show ways to get nice results.

(Perhaps not quit as nice as Modo but that is why I like the look of Pauls plugin)
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:19 PM   #14
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I haven't checked r14 yet. But I am so used to do it in other applications now.
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Old 10-04-2012, 07:45 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mastajappa
It's better to bake in Modo or Zbrush. The c4d ao doesn't bake very well, it's almost impossible to get results without artifacts.


Thanks. But unfortunately, those are not a part of my workflow (I don't have those programs).
 
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