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Support Substances for DAZ Studio.
Posted: 27 May 2012 05:50 AM   [ Ignore ]
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I already make and use Substances for custom texturing of almost all of the stuff I buy on DAZ, and it would be even more powerful if this tool was supported directly in DAZ Studio (right now I have to use Substance Player to bake the textures)... It would also allow the vendors (and therefore users) to have access to much more powerful and flexible texturing options (not to mention significantly reduce download sizes for purchases and keep runtimes more compact).


If you don’t know what Substances are you can learn the basics at the company’s website:  http://www.allegorithmic.com/getstarted


and their YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/user/Allegorithmic

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Posted: 08 June 2012 12:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Oh this is very interesting.  It would be an awesome addition if Studio could support it.

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Posted: 05 December 2012 09:02 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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As I am now producing content for DAZ, I would like to reiterate this request due to the potentially massive value that Substance support could provide to everyone involved.

For DAZ it could mean much smaller texture files, reducing bandwidth consumption.

For PAs it could mean powerful tools and new options for texturing projects.

For users it could mean far greater creative options with your purchases.

To me, this would be just as vital and useful as the GoZ functionality in Studio.

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Posted: 05 December 2012 10:45 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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This looks interesting, however… there are two issues it seems. One, the argument for this versus the shader tools DS already has internal. Two, the fact that people use other tools to accomplish much of this functionality, for instance using zBrush and/or Filter Forge to create some or all of the components that go into shaders such as normal maps etc… which end up providing redundancy to other workflows. I’m not saying your suggestion isn’t valid, just that these contentions (along with some others probably that I’m not thinking of) would need to be addressed in selling the idea. In the end, after all is said and done, the product would have to provide a value above and beyond the other methods currently used to validate the effort required to code an interface (plugin) between DS and it.

It does look like a good point for exploration, and better ways to create (and share among various render engines) shaders appears to be a big near term growth area for 3D (as apposed to physics, which is a little further out imo.)

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Posted: 05 December 2012 11:08 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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I think the benefit comes in many forms… I use and teach ZBrush (check my sig) and Substances are an excellent compliment to ZBrush—many of the things they do ZBrush cannot, and vice versa.

Shaders (as they currently exist) are nice, and they get you part of the way there—but Substances are like shaders on steroids for many reasons.

Mesh specific attributes (Normal, AO, UVs, and Curvature maps) can be extracted and embedded into the Substance, then used in combination with procedural, vector, and bitmap assets to create highly dynamic “textures”.

The PA can easily control what parameters the end user can edit—greatly simplifying the asset creation process and usability of such a dynamic end product. Instead of having a handful of textures to choose from, the end users would be able to go to any of those “presets” but also mix them (much like mixing genesis shaping attributes). For the end-user this would mean loading only one Substance and tweaking parameters as they like from there.

Also, some people do use DAZ products for video game assets… Substances are a perfect fit for this, especially due to the built in support already existing for engines like Unity, and the need for controlling resolution (and other attributes) dynamically in a video game.

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Posted: 05 December 2012 11:17 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Something I forgot to mention in my last post was that a lot of added functionality for DS comes from outside developers creating plugins. LAMH, Reality, etc… If the market was viable, it would probably be more likely that an outside developer would develop a plugin then DS develop it in-house.

Shaders allow one to use bitmap, normal maps, ao.. etc inside the shader already btw, and they can be dynamic. You might be thinking of the shaders exposed through the DS interface, not custom built shaders. What my point was, is one can provide a lot of the functionality shown using Substance Designer by using the tools to create custom shaders that are already available inside DS, not that the surface materials in the basic interface could do that. I don’t know if one can use vector (SVG) formats in current shaders but I’m guessing that if one goes right to coded shaders one could, they would loose the graphical interface however. I’m not the best to be comparing though as I haven’t played with custom shaders yet inside DS but have only watched some of the training videos so far (and skimmed some other reference materials.)

The interesting thing with Substance Designer is that it is used by other engines, Maya, Unity, etc… so it could provide a way to create shaders that would transfer between various work environments. That could be the real selling point.

Edit: I realized your reference to ‘dynamic’ might refer to the creation process of the shader, in that one can see during the development cycle the various parameter modifications. The built in tools are dynamic for the final result in that the shader can have variable inputs for various channels of the shader, but during the creation process itself that is not the case afiak. This is also a valid point. It could definitely make the creation of shaders more efficient.

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Just because I may have a strong opinion doesn’t make it any more (or less) correct than any other, just that I feel passionately a particular way at that moment.

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Posted: 05 December 2012 12:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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Yes, I am definitely looking at this from the POV of a texture artist who doesn’t want to get code heavy, but still have the advantages of such—along with the feel of using a traditional texturing tool like Photoshop, but more power.

I would love to create texture sets (to sell as a PA) but I don’t really see the point in outputting dozens of static textures to encompass the possibilities of what I have made within one self-contained Substance… instead I would prefer to let the user tweak to their hearts content and only output what they want/need. One aspect of this is: textures that may be perfect for rendering in DAZ Studio (3Delight) may not work as well in say Reality (Lux), having the Substance set up to allow users to modify each output (Specular, Bump, Normal, Diffuse, etc) to their needs solves that. And again all of this is very graphical, and completely controlled by the PA, so only what needs to be seen is—reducing clutter and increasing usability.

Of course my ulterior motive is as a content creator I want to create only one texturing solution, that I can then offer for use on any rendering platform the user may desire… which gives my work broader selling potential. However Substances being new(ish) they are still expanding the platforms supported.

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