Area light Highlights Problem .


Hi ,

  • I Create an area light ,
  • Set it’s area light type to “User” and 1 sample
  • Use the mib_amb_occlusion shader as the light shader of the light

It works as expected , but im getting specular highlights from the area light. Is there any way to turn this off in Maya?



Remove check mark for “emit specular” in the light’s attribute.


I Use the mib_amb_occlusion shader as the light shader of the light and “emit specular” does not work .


In your mia_material_x shaders for the scene, in the Advanced section, set the “Specular Balance” to 0. This will turn off legacy Blinn/Phong type specularity, and you’ll only see reflections in your shaders. This is the physically accurate way to do reflections in mental ray; specularity isn’t an actual attribute, but a legacy workaround to give point, directional, and spot lights some fake “area”. Using area lights nullifies the need for this workaround, as they already have reflectable area.


Thank you “InfernalDarkness” . very appreciate .

But I need specular highlights from other light sources . and I dont want to remove specular highlight from all materials in my scene . I need specular highlights because I work for production .

I want to remove specular highlight only from area light .


Why the heck I don’t see “user” type to chosse in maya 2013. It has “custom” instead.
Anyway, if u using mia materials, them go to your area light, change the type to “rectangle”
, mark visible and set the type to “user” or “custom” again.
In the mia material, if No highlights for visible area lights is checked, them the specular won’t show. But that only works if u are using mia materials.
Other materials like phong or misss will still show the specular from this ambient light.

I guess when you put the ambient occlusin as a light shader, the ambient occlusion shader controls the light, and give this specular always on for the materials, so you have no control of that.


Thanks Bilgames .Your guide was very useful . :slight_smile:


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