SSS shaders

SertorialSertorial Posts: 776
edited December 1969 in New Users

I have a V4 character which comes with and SSS shader and a simpler shader.

I think it was designed with Poser 9 in mind, but will an SSS shader work with DS4.5?

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Comments

  • Richard HaseltineRichard Haseltine Posts: 19,934
    edited December 1969

    Not if they are pure Poser settings. if they have a little scroll icon at top-left of the thumbnail, indicating a DAZ Studio native file will fun when they are loaded, then they may have two different settings, one with SSS and one without.

  • SertorialSertorial Posts: 776
    edited March 2013

    Not if they are pure Poser settings. if they have a little scroll icon at top-left of the thumbnail, indicating a DAZ Studio native file will fun when they are loaded, then they may have two different settings, one with SSS and one without.

    the character seems to be under \libraries\pose for some odd reason. Under that there are two folders one labelled "simple" and one labelled "SSS" with all the morphs for the character and the .PZ2 files that load up the textures. But the filenames in the two directories seem to be the same. Is it that the .PZ2 file in one folder calls a normal shader and the one in the other calls this special SSS shader (if it's being done in Poser)?

    Presumably, as I am using DS it won't matter which one I load?

    Post edited by Sertorial on
  • Herald of FireHerald of Fire Posts: 3,384
    edited December 1969

    Most Poser materials can be found under 'Pose', so that much is normal. In general SSS doesn't translate well from Poser materials as it requires specific parameters which the Daz default shader doesn't support. As such it will probably require some manual work to get the SSS working in Daz Studio. Use the UberSurface shader which comes with Daz to add SSS to an existing surface. If you hold CTRL when adding it, you can set it to ignore all the main changes, so it retains the settings of the Poser surface.

  • Richard HaseltineRichard Haseltine Posts: 19,934
    edited December 1969

    It isn't that DS doesn't support SSS, it does - the problem is that only the most basic of settings are read for Poser material files, which is why I said it would work only if there were native DS materials for both variants. Since it appears there aren't any native files in there it's not going to look as good as it should without some work, unless of course there are DS materials in a separate installer or in another folder.

  • SertorialSertorial Posts: 776
    edited March 2013

    It isn't that DS doesn't support SSS, it does - the problem is that only the most basic of settings are read for Poser material files, which is why I said it would work only if there were native DS materials for both variants. Since it appears there aren't any native files in there it's not going to look as good as it should without some work, unless of course there are DS materials in a separate installer or in another folder.

    sorry, what do you mean by "native" DS materials?

    When I load the .PZ2 file (after first applying the morph to V4) it seems to just load the skin of the character. Is that a bit like a .DUF file of a character preset? i.e. it tells DS to load the relevant MAT for the skin surface?

    What I dont understand is why the .PZ2 filenames are all the same in the two folders (simple and SSS)? Where is the shader file? Is that somewhere else then? Or is it an instruction of some sort in the .PZ2 file?

    Post edited by Sertorial on
  • Herald of FireHerald of Fire Posts: 3,384
    edited December 1969

    Yes, DS does support SSS but not via the "Daz Default Material" which it likes to convert most Poser mats into. For that it would need to convert to HumanShader or UberSurface which are often used on the majority of skin textures for characters like Vicky and Aiko.

    While it would need some additional work, there's no reason you can't get similar if not identical results in Daz Studio if you manually change the surface material. The Poser mat can do most of the hard work, while you just add the fine-tuning.

  • Agent_UnawaresAgent_Unawares Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    While it would need some additional work, there's no reason you can't get similar if not identical results in Daz Studio if you manually change the surface material. The Poser mat can do most of the hard work, while you just add the fine-tuning.

    Can you? The SSS effect always travels right through the figure for me no matter what the scale is.

  • Herald of FireHerald of Fire Posts: 3,384
    edited December 1969

    While it would need some additional work, there's no reason you can't get similar if not identical results in Daz Studio if you manually change the surface material. The Poser mat can do most of the hard work, while you just add the fine-tuning.

    Can you? The SSS effect always travels right through the figure for me no matter what the scale is.

    I've not had that issue, so it might be down to your settings. Bear in mind that some of the SSS maps available for certain characters have high amounts of scatter in certain parts of the body, especially in the face. This can lead to very bright spots even if there's no back facing light. For those areas, I usually tone down the SSS to compensate.

  • Agent_UnawaresAgent_Unawares Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    While it would need some additional work, there's no reason you can't get similar if not identical results in Daz Studio if you manually change the surface material. The Poser mat can do most of the hard work, while you just add the fine-tuning.

    Can you? The SSS effect always travels right through the figure for me no matter what the scale is.

    I've not had that issue, so it might be down to your settings. Bear in mind that some of the SSS maps available for certain characters have high amounts of scatter in certain parts of the body, especially in the face. This can lead to very bright spots even if there's no back facing light. For those areas, I usually tone down the SSS to compensate.

    Does it not really take the figure itself into account then? I can put a light directly behind a character and no matter the scale, parts that aren't blocked out from the effect [like the lips] still light up.

  • vwranglervwrangler Posts: 1,537
    edited December 1969

    Does it not really take the figure itself into account then? I can put a light directly behind a character and no matter the scale, parts that aren't blocked out from the effect [like the lips] still light up.

    Just out of curiosity, what do you have the Translucency strength set to? I've noticed that for a lot of characters -- especially those where things are set for Poser -- Translucency strength is MUCH too high. One character lit up like an alarm light whenever he was around any strong lighting, and it took me forever to figure out that the problem was that his default translucency strength was 100%, and it should have been somewhere in the 5-10% range. (It should usually be that low for most human characters in Studio, as I understand it.)

  • Agent_UnawaresAgent_Unawares Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    vwrangler said:
    Does it not really take the figure itself into account then? I can put a light directly behind a character and no matter the scale, parts that aren't blocked out from the effect [like the lips] still light up.

    Just out of curiosity, what do you have the Translucency strength set to? I've noticed that for a lot of characters -- especially those where things are set for Poser -- Translucency strength is MUCH too high. One character lit up like an alarm light whenever he was around any strong lighting, and it took me forever to figure out that the problem was that his default translucency strength was 100%, and it should have been somewhere in the 5-10% range. (It should usually be that low for most human characters in Studio, as I understand it.)


    No translucency.

  • vwranglervwrangler Posts: 1,537
    edited December 1969

    vwrangler said:
    Does it not really take the figure itself into account then? I can put a light directly behind a character and no matter the scale, parts that aren't blocked out from the effect [like the lips] still light up.

    Just out of curiosity, what do you have the Translucency strength set to? I've noticed that for a lot of characters -- especially those where things are set for Poser -- Translucency strength is MUCH too high. One character lit up like an alarm light whenever he was around any strong lighting, and it took me forever to figure out that the problem was that his default translucency strength was 100%, and it should have been somewhere in the 5-10% range. (It should usually be that low for most human characters in Studio, as I understand it.)


    No translucency.

    Hmm. Well, pfeh. I got nothin'.

    The only thing I can think is that maybe Subsurface strength itself might be too high. I generally have it in the 10-25% range, depending on how fair the character is. Other than that, I have no clue. Sorry I couldn't be more helpful.

  • SzarkSzark Posts: 8,793
    edited December 1969

    Sertorial said:
    It isn't that DS doesn't support SSS, it does - the problem is that only the most basic of settings are read for Poser material files, which is why I said it would work only if there were native DS materials for both variants. Since it appears there aren't any native files in there it's not going to look as good as it should without some work, unless of course there are DS materials in a separate installer or in another folder.

    sorry, what do you mean by "native" DS materials?

    When I load the .PZ2 file (after first applying the morph to V4) it seems to just load the skin of the character. Is that a bit like a .DUF file of a character preset? i.e. it tells DS to load the relevant MAT for the skin surface?

    What I dont understand is why the .PZ2 filenames are all the same in the two folders (simple and SSS)? Where is the shader file? Is that somewhere else then? Or is it an instruction of some sort in the .PZ2 file?

    Back to the problem at hand. First what Skin set is it? Did you but it from here? Can we have a link please?

    Ok PZ2 is not a Default Daz material. ,ds, .dsb, .dsa, duf are all Daz Material formats, the first 3 being the older, Duf being the new one. PZ2 can be material and/or a Pose and/or a shaping preset (from memory)

    A Poser PZ2 SSS Preset would be 99% of the time Poser Mats and probably Poser 9. Now if the vender did not provide any DS mat presets then I would have to guess that the Skin set was Poser only. This is not to say you cannot use them in Daz Studio it just means you will have to do it manually using Uber Surface which comes with Daz Studio as standard.

  • SzarkSzark Posts: 8,793
    edited December 1969

    While it would need some additional work, there's no reason you can't get similar if not identical results in Daz Studio if you manually change the surface material. The Poser mat can do most of the hard work, while you just add the fine-tuning.

    Can you? The SSS effect always travels right through the figure for me no matter what the scale is.

    I've not had that issue, so it might be down to your settings. Bear in mind that some of the SSS maps available for certain characters have high amounts of scatter in certain parts of the body, especially in the face. This can lead to very bright spots even if there's no back facing light. For those areas, I usually tone down the SSS to compensate.

    Does it not really take the figure itself into account then? I can put a light directly behind a character and no matter the scale, parts that aren't blocked out from the effect [like the lips] still light up.
    Did you look at ambient? What lights where you using and were they using Deep Shadow Maps or Raytraced Shadows? What was your Max Ray Traced Depth value in the Advanced Render Setting Pane? And that is just the start of finding out why you get what you get.

  • Richard HaseltineRichard Haseltine Posts: 19,934
    edited March 2013

    Is the light casting shadows? If not the lips are quite a thin area on the mesh, so even with Scale turned down I wouldn't be unduly surprised if light falling on the inside of the mouth was being transmitted through. Also, check the teeth and tongue are in a separate Subsurface group from the face.

    Post edited by Richard Haseltine on
  • SzarkSzark Posts: 8,793
    edited December 1969

    SSS scale is how the thick the surface is before the SSS takes place. Most seem to use a value of 1.00 to 1.70 but recently this has been challenged with the thinking of 1.00 being 1 CM so a scale of 0.10 might be a better starting point but I haven't got around testing that out yet....YET. :)

  • SertorialSertorial Posts: 776
    edited December 1969

    Ahem! My thread seems to have got hi-jacked here.. ;)

    Szark said:
    Back to the problem at hand.
    Thanks :)

    Szark said:

    First what Skin set is it? Did you but it from here? Can we have a link please?
    It's from Renderosity. here's the link http://www.renderosity.com/mod/bcs/the-metropolitan-collection---london-v4-2/97977


    Ok PZ2 is not a Default Daz material. ,ds, .dsb, .dsa, duf are all Daz Material formats, the first 3 being the older, Duf being the new one. PZ2 can be material and/or a Pose and/or a shaping preset (from memory)


    gotcha.


    A Poser PZ2 SSS Preset would be 99% of the time Poser Mats and probably Poser 9. Now if the vender did not provide any DS mat presets then I would have to guess that the Skin set was Poser only. This is not to say you cannot use them in Daz Studio it just means you will have to do it manually using Uber Surface which comes with Daz Studio as standard.


    So am I right in thinking that a .PZ2 file is basically the Poser equivalent of a .DUF file? So it calls all the stuff it needs to make the character? (geometry, surfaces etc) and so it will tell Poser to load a SSS shader? So if I load it in DS it won't be able to load a SSS shader automatically because it was designed to be used in Poser?

    If you could just tell me I am on the right lines, that would be very reassuring. I am trying to understand how all this stuff works...

  • SzarkSzark Posts: 8,793
    edited December 1969

    Yep you ae on the right track.

    Yes PZ2 can be a morph injection (Shape), a pose or a material preset. Here is some info on file formats etc though it doesn't explain the different PZ2 functions like we have discussed here.

    It does say on the product page that the SSS is for Poser 9/ and 2012 just as I thought so no it will not work inside Daz Studio from the SSS Preset. This wil be a case of if you are wanting SSS then manually setting up Uber Surfare is the way to go.

  • SertorialSertorial Posts: 776
    edited December 1969

    Szark said:
    Yep you ae on the right track.

    Yes PZ2 can be a morph injection (Shape), a pose or a material preset. Here is some info on file formats etc though it doesn't explain the different PZ2 functions like we have discussed here.

    It does say on the product page that the SSS is for Poser 9/ and 2012 just as I thought so no it will not work inside Daz Studio from the SSS Preset. This wil be a case of if you are wanting SSS then manually setting up Uber Surfare is the way to go.

    You rock! thanks for that.

    So, do I just Ctrl-load the ubersurface (so I don't replace all the textures)?

  • SzarkSzark Posts: 8,793
    edited December 1969

    Yes but take a note of bump and displacement maps settings beofre doing so just in case. ;)

    But there is more work to set up the mats using SSS than justing loading and rendering...a lot more.

    This aspect a lot of people have trouble with as there is a lot to learn so the question is are up for a real challenge and it will take a little time to explain all the setttings which also depend on the light rig. Bad lighting and SSS don't mix.

  • Richard HaseltineRichard Haseltine Posts: 19,934
    edited December 1969

    There won't be any displacement settings from a PZ2, even if it would give them in Poser.

  • SertorialSertorial Posts: 776
    edited December 1969

    Szark said:
    Yes but take a note of bump and displacement maps settings beofre doing so just in case. ;)

    But there is more work to set up the mats using SSS than justing loading and rendering...a lot more.

    This aspect a lot of people have trouble with as there is a lot to learn so the question is are up for a real challenge and it will take a little time to explain all the setttings which also depend on the light rig. Bad lighting and SSS don't mix.

    okey dokey

    Actually I am just doing a quick exercise rendering the same scene (a figure's face) using the same lighting, same render settings, but just changing shaders (first DAZ default, then Human Surface, then Uber Surface)

    interesting. The uber surface has something called velvet which apparently makes like little fuzzy hairs on the face. Cute :)

  • SzarkSzark Posts: 8,793
    edited December 1969

    If you are intending on learning Uber Surface then leave out Human Surface as it is just a cut down version of Uber Surface. Learning Uber Surface will help you aplpy it too more than skin, metal, cloth etc.

    Velvet can be used for a number of things but essentaillly yeah it can sort of look like a fuzz of fine hair at a distance.

  • Agent_UnawaresAgent_Unawares Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Szark said:
    While it would need some additional work, there's no reason you can't get similar if not identical results in Daz Studio if you manually change the surface material. The Poser mat can do most of the hard work, while you just add the fine-tuning.
    Can you? The SSS effect always travels right through the figure for me no matter what the scale is.

    I've not had that issue, so it might be down to your settings. Bear in mind that some of the SSS maps available for certain characters have high amounts of scatter in certain parts of the body, especially in the face. This can lead to very bright spots even if there's no back facing light. For those areas, I usually tone down the SSS to compensate.

    Does it not really take the figure itself into account then? I can put a light directly behind a character and no matter the scale, parts that aren't blocked out from the effect [like the lips] still light up.
    Did you look at ambient? What lights where you using and were they using Deep Shadow Maps or Raytraced Shadows? What was your Max Ray Traced Depth value in the Advanced Render Setting Pane? And that is just the start of finding out why you get what you get.

    Is the light casting shadows? If not the lips are quite a thin area on the mesh, so even with Scale turned down I wouldn't be unduly surprised if light falling on the inside of the mouth was being transmitted through. Also, check the teeth and tongue are in a separate Subsurface group from the face.


    I don't recall whether I tried with the light casting shadows or not. In my mind that shouldn't make a difference. Light shouldn't scatter through the whole model just because there aren't any shadows - it doesn't scatter through if SSS is completely off, after all. But it could be a quirk of the shader, so I'll try a bit later.

    No ambient. Diffuse set to a skin texture at 80% strength. Subsurface color mapped to the same texture with a pink tone. Very low specularity strength [not that that makes a difference since the light is on the exact opposite side of the model]. Why would raytrace depth matter?

  • SzarkSzark Posts: 8,793
    edited December 1969

    First off SSS is a raytraced function therefore it really does need Raytraced shadows to get the best effect. If you don't have shadows turned on at all then the light will travel through eveything, it is a cheap way of faking bouce light.

    Are you saying the Diffuse texture map is in the SSS colour channel and the SSS colour is set to Pink? That could be your problem but without seeing all your settings I will be guessing everytime. :)

    Max Ray Trace depth needs to be 1 better still 2 for the same reason as Ray traced shadows, SSS is a Raytrace function.

    If the Velvet colour or settings are too strong that could cause the effect your are getting but again I am guessing.

  • Richard HaseltineRichard Haseltine Posts: 19,934
    edited March 2013

    Is the light casting shadows? If not the lips are quite a thin area on the mesh, so even with Scale turned down I wouldn't be unduly surprised if light falling on the inside of the mouth was being transmitted through. Also, check the teeth and tongue are in a separate Subsurface group from the face.

    I don't recall whether I tried with the light casting shadows or not. In my mind that shouldn't make a difference. Light shouldn't scatter through the whole model just because there aren't any shadows - it doesn't scatter through if SSS is completely off, after all. But it could be a quirk of the shader, so I'll try a bit later.

    The thing would be, with shadows off and a light from behind there'd be light falling on the back of the lips and that's a thin layer of mesh so it might well scatter light to the front - think of putting a torch in your mouth.

    Post edited by Richard Haseltine on
  • Richard HaseltineRichard Haseltine Posts: 19,934
    edited December 1969

    Szark said:
    First off SSS is a raytraced function therefore it really does need Raytraced shadows to get the best effect. If you don't have shadows turned on at all then the light will travel through eveything, it is a cheap way of faking bouce light.

    Are you saying the Diffuse texture map is in the SSS colour channel and the SSS colour is set to Pink? That could be your problem but without seeing all your settings I will be guessing everytime. :)

    Max Ray Trace depth needs to be 1 better still 2 for the same reason as Ray traced shadows, SSS is a Raytrace function.

    If the Velvet colour or settings are too strong that could cause the effect your are getting but again I am guessing.

    Ray-traced shadows are just that - ray-traced shadows. Having them on or off doesn't affect the working of other ray-traced aspects, as you can confirm by setting reflections on in an unshadowed or depth-mapped shadowed scene.

  • Agent_UnawaresAgent_Unawares Posts: 0
    edited March 2013

    D'oh! I didn't even think of it that way. I'd figured since it was smart enough not to light the far side of the surface from the light it wouldn't be lighting the near side either...that was a pretty ridiculous lapse in logic. :lol:

    Will try with a raytraced light and see what happens.

    Post edited by Agent_Unawares on
  • Agent_UnawaresAgent_Unawares Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Raytraced shadows solved the issue. Thanks, guys.

  • SertorialSertorial Posts: 776
    edited December 1969

    Szark said:
    First off SSS is a raytraced function therefore it really does need Raytraced shadows to get the best effect. .

    Hang on. I thought everything used raytracing in the 3D rendering world?

    I thought 3d rendering was basically a mathematical model taking rays of light and making them interact with shapes and surfaces. Isn't that the same as ray tracing?

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