Best way of showing a point cloud?

Become a member of the CGSociety

Connect, Share, and Learn with our Large Growing CG Art Community. It's Free!

THREAD CLOSED
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 12 December 2011   #1
Best way of showing a point cloud?

Hi,

I've been scripting a Point Cloud importer at work and I'm curious if anyone here could give some advice on what's the best/fastest way to show the cloud in the viewport (nitrous, max 2012)?

Importing each point as a helper object works, but is incredibly slow. Importing them as Vertices in a mesh is fast, but they doesn't show unless you're in the objects vertex mode and ideally the size should only be one pixel, not a square. I was also thinking about the possibility of using particles..

Preferably something that works with volume select (to hide/unhide parts of the cloud) would be the best because of the large size and density we are working with.
__________________
www.hille3d.no
 
Old 12 December 2011   #2
This isn't a scripted solution but Autodesk Labs have a free point cloud plugin which does all that you asked for.
__________________
Renderfarm hire available @ www.hotknife.co.uk
 
Old 12 December 2011   #3
Yes, I am guessing you're thinking about Helix. The preview version expired today and they've discontinued the development.

Quote: "The technology preview stops running on the 20th. Thanks to everyone who provided feedback. At this time there are no plans to extend the preview of the current technology. The team is investigating other technologies. It is possible there may be another technology preview in the future."

*link*
__________________
www.hille3d.no
 
Old 12 December 2011   #4
For our point cloud work here, we've gone to Krakatoa from ThinkBox. It's awesome. We have a license of Frost also, but so far I'm preferring the speed of Krakatoa and willing to render the particles on their own pass instead of meshing them into geometry with Frost. Worth looking into versus scripting your own solution perhaps.
__________________
| Twitter | LinkedIn | JCanimator.com |
 
Old 12 December 2011   #5
Regarding Krakatoa, for showing particles in the viewport, the FREE evaluation version of Krakatoa will do the job nicely. It will even let you render them without a watermark at resolutions below 480x360.
But if all you want to do is show the particles in the viewports for preview purposes, you can use the PRT Loader - it supports small points, large (Z-buffered) points and Vectors from Velocity and Normals and Tangents.
In addition, the whole Magma channel editing system works on top of the PRT Loader so you can display values as colors, modify channels and perform surface operations like stealing data from scene objects and so on. All for free.
Then you can cull particles using geometry volumes, and resave the modified particles to new file sequences after processing. You can load and save Krakatoa's own PRT files, RealFlow BIN files and ASCII Comma-Separated Values files, and there are MAXScript interfaces to both save and load PRT files if you want to use that format (which is already supported by RealFlow and Naiad, among others) for storage - it is compressed and pretty extensible.

Not only does VolumeSelect work with the PRT Loader (except for the mesh mode, but Krakatoa 2 is adding its own solutions for this), you can add ANY deformation modifiers on the PRT Loader and deform it as if it were a mesh. It even provides a SkinWrap modifier to deform by arbitrary control mesh, for example a skinned character.

And it was designed to work with large particle counts.

There are PRT loading operators for PFlow so you can mesh your particles using PFlow Shapes without using Krakatoa rendering. There are some bonus PFlow operators that require a license, but the basic PRT Birth, Update and ID Test operators work in the evaluation version.

Did I mention all these features are available FOR FREE?

http://www.thinkboxsoftware.com/krakatoa-downloads
__________________
Bobo

Last edited by Bobo : 12 December 2011 at 06:05 PM.
 
Old 12 December 2011   #6
Thanks for your replies! I'll definitively check out the PRT loader. For now I got it working with particle flow and it's fast too. But so far I've only tested with 400 000 particles. Going to try a much larger file tomorrow.
__________________
www.hille3d.no
 
Old 12 December 2011   #7
Thread automatically closed

This thread has been automatically closed as it remained inactive for 12 months. If you wish to continue the discussion, please create a new thread in the appropriate forum.
__________________
CGTalk Policy/Legalities
Note that as CGTalk Members, you agree to the terms and conditions of using this website.
 
Thread Closed share thread



Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
CGSociety
Society of Digital Artists
www.cgsociety.org

Powered by vBulletin
Copyright 2000 - 2006,
Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Minimize Ads
Forum Jump
Miscellaneous

All times are GMT. The time now is 10:46 PM.


Powered by vBulletin
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.