Is there an issue with Maya 2014 reading previous shaders?

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  11 November 2013
Is there an issue with Maya 2014 reading previous shaders?

I bought a few of models from and they are great. Very good for modern furniture.

I do have a problem with the shaders however. I use Maya2014 on Mac OSX. When I open one of those files (manhattan_sofa.mb) for example and immediately try to do a MentalRay render without touching anything at all, everything comes out black. If I then create a simple test poly sphere right in the middle of the sofa and re-render, the sphere renders normally (grey). This is leaving everything at default settings, using the default light.

If assign a generic mia_material_x to the sphere, it render normally in white. The sofa is still all black around it.

If I then assign the shader that is assigned to the sofa to the sphere (which is a simple mostly white mia_material), the sphere now renders black also.

So it looks like there is something in those materials is not reading properly in Maya2014. And this happens with the 8 models I bought so it's not an isolated incident.

One odd thing I noticed is that most of the pieces of geometry have an initial shading group with a couple of Lambert materials attached to them in front of the actual mia_material. I am coming back to Maya after a few years using Katana so I am a little rusty but that doesn't seem right, does it?

Any idea what that might be happening there?

Thank you very much.

Bo Struye

Last edited by Bmachine : 11 November 2013 at 03:11 AM.
  11 November 2013
I should add that there are no obvious problems reported in the script editor although I do get the following:

// Warning: line 0: This file is from an older version of Maya. If saved, it will not be readable by previous versions. //
// Error: file: /Applications/Autodesk/maya2014/ line 3904: Object 'pauseIprButton' not found. //
// AbcImport v1.0 using Alembic 1.1.2 (built Oct 23 2012 11:32:30)
// AbcExport v1.0 using Alembic 1.1.2 (built Oct 23 2012 11:32:30)
// Error: file: /Applications/Autodesk/maya2014/ line 3904: Object 'pauseIprButton' not found. //
// Error: file: /Applications/Autodesk/maya2014/ line 3904: Object 'pauseIprButton' not found. //
// Warning: (Mayatomr.Scene) : loftedSurface3: can't resolve light links, ignored //
// Warning: (Mayatomr.Scene) : polySurface15: can't resolve light links, ignored //
  11 November 2013
By "black" do you mean flat zero black, or black, but still showing shading? If the 2nd, have you checked that your fileTextures are pointing to the correct path where the images are?

  11 November 2013
Thanks for the reply, djx.

Good question. At first it looked 100% black. But when I create a new mia_material_x and assigned it to half of the model, that half rendered properly. And when I cranked the gamma of the monitor way up, I noticed that I am getting a faint reflection component in the part of the geo that has the original shaders. It's almost as if the level of every component of the shader was multiplied by 0.0001.


PS: Melbourne is awesome! (Apart from the weather)
PPS: I love Sydney also but I should probably not admit that to you... ;-)
  11 November 2013
OK, I've done more digging and discovered two interesting facts.

First of all, the "Black render"... It turns out that the models scenes were originally saved with a "Custom linking" in the light linking tab. Not good. Switching that to "Maya linking" fixed it.


But then I noticed a second problem. When I import the scene file of this model into my main scene, the shader assignment is gone! That may have been why I found a bunch of Initial Shading Group with a Lambert shader everywhere.

Again, this only happens on some of these model files. So it leads me to believe that they were done in an earlier version of Maya and the shader assignments are not being seem when those files are imported into another scene for some reason.... But they do show up just fine when you open that file directly.

Really puzzling.
  11 November 2013
Answering my own question about missing materials... In Maya2014, the Import function has an option for "UseNamespaces". It turns out that if you leave that checked (I believe it is the default) it will screw up most shader assignments. Some seem to survive but many appear to be gone completely.

This could be related to wildly different versions being used but it seems to me this is the kind of thing that should be Off by default.
  11 November 2013
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