Lock/Mute channels from being keyed?

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  08 August 2013
Lock/Mute channels from being keyed?

Hi all,

I haven't used C4D for anything character in absolute ages (R10?) and I'm stuck now.

I've been trying to figure this out for a while but no success really.
I know I can lock attributes with xpresso from being manipulated but they still get keys but with all the different controls on the character this will take longer than the actual setup...

In Maya you can just right-click on the object and lock/mute certain channels.
So let's say have a controller object for a character that I only want to get keys on tY and tX, but want to lock tZ and all rotation/scale.

My problem is that I'm not working with the character myself but have to hand it over to the client and they need it in C4D as they don't work with Maya. So I have to make the rig as "fool-proof" as possible

I'm in R14 Studio

Any help/ideas?

Thanks
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  08 August 2013
in the attached screenshot, the blue/yellow highlighted icons are your friends.
or look up "turn on/off for recording".
cheers
fuat
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  08 August 2013
Not sure what Fuat wanted to show, as the screenshot doesn't seem to highlight anything, but you can right-click on parameters that you'd like to keep active for keyframing and use that as keyframe selection (Animation>Add Keyframe Selection).

This will only restrict auto-keyframing, though, these tracked can still be keyed manually in the timeline or Attributes Manager.
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  08 August 2013
i was a little unclear maybe, sorry.
i meant the blue/yellow colored icons, not highlighted.
with these you can disable auto-keying on transforms like scaling or rotation or whatever you like, just as fluffouille described.
and with the shortcuts X, Y, and Z you can lock/unlock the object-axes to prevent them from being changed.
hope this is a little clearer now.
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  08 August 2013
thanks guys.

i know how to lock/unlock keyframing for position/rotation/etc. in the timeline.

i think, i'm after the opposite though. for example I want to lock/hide the scale attributes on a hand controller. so when the controller is selected and the animator hits scale by accident the controller wouldn't be scaled anyway. see attached screenshot. in this the rotation and scale values for a cube are locked (greyed out). this means, when selected the object cannot be rotated, scaled or switched invisible at all and wouldn't get keyframes (either through autokey or manual keying)

like i said, i have a maya mindset here so maybe approaching this the completely wrong way.
Attached Images
File Type: png Screen Shot 2013-08-13 at 16.40.25.png (11.7 KB, 16 views)
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  08 August 2013
You can do what Sebastian said about removing from Keyframe selections.

In addition you can use the protection tag to lock attributes(though only PSR). I don't know if it prevents keyframes(thats why youd use what was said above), but it would prevent from any changes to that attribute from happening, so keys wouldn't be problematic.
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  08 August 2013
You can't really get the same behavior as Maya exactly, the closest equivalent IMO is to add 'Protection' tags to the objects in question with what ever channels you want to lock and then to prevent them being keyed you can right click on the specific ones that should be keyed and choose 'Animation>Add Keyframe Selection'. Using this you can make sure that say only rotation will get keyed on a FK controller and you can make sure that Userdata gets keyed too, like say on an IK foot controller with foot roll controls.

Unfortunately there's not a way to really prevent the animator setting keys though as they can still click on the channels in the AM as mentioned. I'd love it too if Maxon updated the AM to work more like the channel box in Maya. As a rigger/animator I really like to do a 'lock and hide' channels to any channels I know don't need to be keyed in the channel box . It's not only making the rig more robust, it's a nice visual guide while animating as then only the channels that can be keyed show up in the CB while working, so things are clear at a glance as to what channels are available.The AM in Cinema by comparison always displays all transform channels no matter what you do.

I guess I can't say too much (NDAs and all that) but I do know a 'channel box' style attribute manager has been requested by C4D users but so far no sign of it being implemented. I would recommend sending a suggestion to Maxon if you have time as the more people ask for it the more likely it is to happen.

Cheers,
Brian
 
  08 August 2013
thanks guys. got it to (kinda) working!

i normally wouldn't care but the rig is going to be used by someone who's not that familiar with C4D so I'm just trying to avoid the phone calls saying "rig exploded. help!"

i'll send a request to Maxon as well (though i kinda think it's unfair to say 'i want it to work exactly like Maya' as i could imagine that they think 'then GET Maya' and I do like C4D for everything else apart from Character stuff )
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  08 August 2013
Send your request, the more the better.
Like Brian said, it is a feature that has been requested in the past, and would be a nice addition to the animation workflow.
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  08 August 2013
Originally Posted by CosmicBear: i normally wouldn't care but the rig is going to be used by someone who's not that familiar with C4D so I'm just trying to avoid the phone calls saying "rig exploded. help!"


Heh heh, well if it's any consolation I don't think I've seen an animator yet who can't break a rig (in any package) no matter what the rigger does to try to stop them doing it

Cheers,
Brian
 
  08 August 2013
Originally Posted by Horganovski: Heh heh, well if it's any consolation I don't think I've seen an animator yet who can't break a rig (in any package) no matter what the rigger does to try to stop them doing it

Cheers,
Brian



They will always find a way. Character objects are nice in that a lot more is hidden from them but they'll still be able to.

What always bugs me is that the method used by xrefs was constantly pointed out as an example and the argument was That it couldn't be done the same way but they've yet to do any way since the character object came out. We all made a major stink a out locking channels back then.
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Last edited by LucentDreams : 08 August 2013 at 07:05 PM.
 
  08 August 2013
Originally Posted by Horganovski: Heh heh, well if it's any consolation I don't think I've seen an animator yet who can't break a rig (in any package) no matter what the rigger does to try to stop them doing it

Cheers,
Brian



HAHA trust me, i have broken most of rigs I've worked with myself

I'm keeping a list of things that I would like to see and send it to Maxon at the end of the project. I'm sure I will stumble upon other 'nice to have's'...
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  08 August 2013
Another thing I tried before was to use layers to lock keyframes.

Once you add an animation track/keyframe on an attribute, you can go to the Timeline Manager and assign those tracks to a layer (even an empty track with no keyframes will do).
Locking the layer would prevent adding/editing of keyframes for that attribute, even ctrl/cmd-clicking in the AM. Would also helo if you do need keyframes on something but you don't want anyone else to touch it.

Though under normal circumstances Add Keyframe Selection should be enough. (But lock EVERYTHING you don't want touched in the OM anyway. The more childproof your rig the better.)
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  08 August 2013
i haven't ready the full tread but why not just make the ones you want to you a Keyframe Selection. Right click on the thing you want keyed and go to Animation > Add Keyframe Selection.

Oops just read some more of the post and this is not what your looking for.
 
  08 August 2013
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