What polygon count should I work towards?

Hi All,

Im working on a near future jet fighter model that I would like to be detailed enough to work for close up renders. What polygon count should I try to stick with? I would like to load it up for purposes of detail but more importantly I want it to be friendly for mid-range pc specs.

Comments

  • MorkonanMorkonan Posts: 215
    edited July 2016

    That's not an easy question to answer. But, you're thinking in the right direction - Modeling for intended use.

    Go to ShareCG and check out the Object section. There are several really good aircraft models there, many that have decent cockpits. See how you like the look of those in some test renders. (Your renderer will, of course, be the determining factor as not all render engines handle models the same.)

    Think about what sort of aircraft it is. Is it a F-117? Well, that has a bunch of angles to it, right? Is it a F-16? A nice flying dart fuselage with angular wings and a big ol' dome for the pilot. An F-18? Variable wings, double-seater, etc. A Sopwith Camel? Gonna detail the ribs? (Someone produced a very nice WWI fighter, here, with a fully detailed structure/ribwork. Was very nice.) A big 747? Windows, engines, curves everywhere..

    As you can probably guess, you won't really be able to estimate it unless you've had a boatload of practice with aircraft. Even then, every model is different.

    For a "guess" - Make a basic shape of the aircraft. Use primitives for certain spots. (Basically, use some boxes, cylinderes, spheres, etc, and stick 'em together.) Then, when you've got a basic "shadow" of the aircraft going, even it if's not generally recognizeable as a specific model of aircraft, hit it with a subdivision. I'm just making a wild guess, but the number of polys would probably be about half-to-all of the polys for a low resolution model with a lot of textures doing all the work. Hit two more sub-d and that number would be at the low end of a mid-resolution model. One more should get you at the top end of a mid resolution model.. Again, just a guess, if you just have to have one. :) At the high-end of a decent model with good exterior views and decent exterior-to-interior shots (no extensive cockpit details) I'll guess and say you need 100,000 polys, depending on the detail needed for landing gear/tires.

    Lastly - Think about what you absolute HAVE to model and what you can use textures, bump/displacement/normal maps for. For instance, you don't need to model the needles on the indicator gauges, right? Even if you want them to turn, you can get away with just making a rough circle and using transmaps/textures to make the needle. Do you need to model the grip on the control stick? Maybe. But, do you need to model foot-pedals if they'll never be seen? Plan out your model, with its intended use in mind. Make SURE to save a series of working copies of the model at different Subivision/completeness/detail levels! This is imperative! As you work, if you notice the model getting too large, drop back to an earlier save/model and then procede from there with a new level of detail planned. Work purposefully to limit geometry to only that which is absolutely necessary to give you the needed details for your specific renderering app. (ie: Let's say you're using a renderer that gets finicky about transmaps and shadows/raytracing. OK, those areas that will be in high relief and need good shadows being cast from them must be made of actual geometry, rather than relying on texture work. Yeah, knowing the renderer and/or the format you're working towards can get important, sometimes. You shouldn't have any issues with DS or Poser native rendering, but IRay/Superfly may have certain requirements, considering they are PBR-based.)

    PS - There's also a really nice, high-detail, cockpit interior linked around here, somewhere. Not sure where it was hosted. Try ShareCG, again. There's one guy, at least, that specializes in aircraft models and there are bunches of them in the Objects section, mostly WW-II aircraft. Oh, just remembered, there's also a decent mid-res pilot bust on ShareCG and/or Vanishing Point. Also, on ShareCG (Look up my account), I did a retexture of a low-res Pilot figure from Vanishing Point, as well as some accessories as a request. (Star Wars theme, though one of the packs can be used for a realistic pilot, I think. I don't know if I did any morphs, but I think I tweaked the rigging a bit. I also was doing a bunch of other stuff, but got side-tracked with Real Life and forgot. :( )

    Good luck! Post your progress pics and ask for advice if you need it!

    Post edited by Morkonan on
  • AnotherUserNameAnotherUserName Posts: 2,308
    Morkonan said:
     I'll guess and say you need 100,000 polys, depending on the detail needed for landing gear/tires.

    Hi Morkonan,

    Thanks for the reply. A 100,000 limit is actually very encouraging. Im trying to finish up the basic mesh right now and with smoothing set to lvl. 2, im just cresting over 40,000 polys on the fuselage.

    I cant say that I planned this model really. I just wanted to become a little more familiar with Hex and what started out just as an excercise to learn the tools suddenly became something else. I like it, whether daz would want to sell it or not is a completely different question, but at the very least it will be a good learning experience. Im currently working towards getting rid of excesive polys so I hope that ime on the right track.

    Ill post some pics as I get closer to detailing the model.

  • user.operatoruser.operator Posts: 247
    edited July 2016

    It also depends on the level of realism you're going for.  And geometry normals is something to take into account, for example, these are BOTH the same exact 16 sided cylinder.....yet because of how the normals are configured, one is much smoother than the other.  You can't do this in hexagon, I change it directly in my renderer.....and it's a feature worth using when appropriate if you can find a way to do it third party.    Of course it can have some drawbacks, especially for reflective shiny objects with many different angled curves....but used properly, it can drastically reduce the complexity of a 3D model, while increasing its realism.  

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    1280 x 720 - 3M
    Post edited by user.operator on
  • AnotherUserNameAnotherUserName Posts: 2,308

    It also depends on the level of realism you're going for.  And geometry normals is something to take into account, for example, these are BOTH the same exact 16 sided cylinder.....yet because of how the normals are configured, one is much smoother than the other.  You can't do this in hexagon, I change it directly in my renderer.....and it's a feature worth using when appropriate if you can find a way to do it third party.    Of course it can have some drawbacks, especially for reflective shiny objects with many different angled curves....but used properly, it can drastically reduce the complexity of a 3D model, while increasing its realism.  

    Are these the same kind of normals that you find for some of the character skin settings? Im afraid I dont know much about normals other than they simulate more detail...

  • user.operatoruser.operator Posts: 247
    edited July 2016

    That's why it's good to learn in detail about normals, as they play a big role in modelling.  That's not something I can teach you here without writing a lot.  They're what determines the softness of edges between polygons. By default, hexagon has a degree of smoothing to the normals, and you can export models without normals entirely.  But being able to determine your normal settings really does offer a great level of control.   

    Post edited by user.operator on
  • DzFireDzFire Posts: 1,375

    With today's computers, 500k is an okay limit. ;)

  • AnotherUserNameAnotherUserName Posts: 2,308
    DzFire said:

    With today's computers, 500k is an okay limit. ;)

    That is good to know. The extra poly count will definetely help.

  • MorkonanMorkonan Posts: 215
    edited July 2016

    It also depends on the level of realism you're going for.  And geometry normals is something to take into account, for example, these are BOTH the same exact 16 sided cylinder.....yet because of how the normals are configured, one is much smoother than the other.  You can't do this in hexagon, I change it directly in my renderer.....and it's a feature worth using when appropriate if you can find a way to do it third party.    Of course it can have some drawbacks, especially for reflective shiny objects with many different angled curves....but used properly, it can drastically reduce the complexity of a 3D model, while increasing its realism.  

    Are these the same kind of normals that you find for some of the character skin settings? Im afraid I dont know much about normals other than they simulate more detail...

    user-operator is talking about "vertice normals" that are used to calculate the "Smooth Shading" you're seeing in that render. "Face Normals" are different, but they use the vertice normals to calculate the aggregate "face normal" and it's the face normal that is most often referred to in DS/Poser-speak.

    In the material room, for instance, whenever it's discussing "normals" it's always talking about the "face normal" (ie: The direction the "face" is pointed relative the camera) unless it is specifically talking about "Smooth Shading" (if someone has a funky shader set up) which uses vertice normals.

    (In Poser, and I assume DS, you can define smooth shading options and limits by object, in the object's Object panel, and in the rendering app you can define shading limits. These limits, present in both controls, define how far the app will go regarding the surface angles calculated at the vetice normals in order to provide smooth-shading effect for the object. Very few vertice normals means that smooth shading doesn't have a lot to work with and the results, if it is enable, will be generally unpredictable. Smooth shading loves lots of verts, at least enough to calculate the required smooth shading angles chosen in the options.)

    Side-note: Face normals are commonly calculated by derterming the vertice order in which the face was created. A face that was created by placing vertices in a clockwise fasion will be created "facing" the camera. A face that is created using vertices in a counter-clockwise fashion will be created with the face-normal facing away from the camera. This is why there is a "Show/Hide Backfaces" toggle in Hexagon. It uses an OpenGL renderer for the workspace and OpenGl, by default, uses the vertice-order method to calc face-normals. Note: You can see this in action, yourself, by constructing faces clockwise/counter-clockwise. However, Hexagon unifies the face normals of faces created during one session of Facet tool use, so you'll have to create two seperate object faces to see it in action.

    Post edited by Morkonan on
  • AnotherUserNameAnotherUserName Posts: 2,308
    Morkonan said:

    user-operator is talking about "vertice normals" that are used to calculate the "Smooth Shading" you're seeing in that render. "Face Normals" are different, but they use the vertice normals to calculate the aggregate "face normal" and it's the face normal that is most often referred to in DS/Poser-speak.

    In the material room, for instance, whenever it's discussing "normals" it's always talking about the "face normal" (ie: The direction the "face" is pointed relative the camera) unless it is specifically talking about "Smooth Shading" (if someone has a funky shader set up) which uses vertice normals.

    (In Poser, and I assume DS, you can define smooth shading options and limits by object, in the object's Object panel, and in the rendering app you can define shading limits. These limits, present in both controls, define how far the app will go regarding the surface angles calculated at the vetice normals in order to provide smooth-shading effect for the object. Very few vertice normals means that smooth shading doesn't have a lot to work with and the results, if it is enable, will be generally unpredictable. Smooth shading loves lots of verts, at least enough to calculate the required smooth shading angles chosen in the options.)

    Side-note: Face normals are commonly calculated by derterming the vertice order in which the face was created. A face that was created by placing vertices in a clockwise fasion will be created "facing" the camera. A face that is created using vertices in a counter-clockwise fashion will be created with the face-normal facing away from the camera. This is why there is a "Show/Hide Backfaces" toggle in Hexagon. It uses an OpenGL renderer for the workspace and OpenGl, by default, uses the vertice-order method to calc face-normals. Note: You can see this in action, yourself, by constructing faces clockwise/counter-clockwise. However, Hexagon unifies the face normals of faces created during one session of Facet tool use, so you'll have to create two seperate object faces to see it in action.

    Hmmm... Ok. Ill need to run some excercises somewhere down the line to see this in action. Thanks for the info.

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