Announcement

Collapse

PMDG Forum Rules

1) SIGN YOUR POSTS. Since 1997, we have asked users to sign their real name, first and last, to all posts in the PMDG forum. We do this in order to keep conversations personal and familiar. You took the time to be here, we want to get to know you. This is one of the few rigid rules that we enforce regularly. We do so because we feel that forums in which users must engage one another personally are generally warmer, more collegial and friendly. Posts that are unsigned will be quietly removed without comment by the moderators, so to make your life easy- we recommend enabling your forum signature so that you never need to remember. Do this by clicking the username pull-down at the top right, then selecting "User Settings." You will find the signature editor on the ACCOUNT tab, about half way down the page. Look for "Edit Post Signature." Be sure to click the "Show Signatures" box.

2) BE NICE. We are all simmers here and no matter our differences of opinion, we share a common love of aviation, computing and simulation. Treat everyone else in the forum with respect even when you disagree. If someone frustrates you, walk away from the conversation or ask for a moderator to get involved. Speaking of Moderators, they prefer not to be treated as "The Thought Police" but if any behavior infringes on the enjoyment of another user or is otherwise considered to be unacceptable in the moderator's judgment, it will be addressed in keeping with our view of ensuring that this forum remains a healthy environment for all simmers.

3) BE LAWFUL: Any behavior that infringes upon the law, such as discussion or solicitation of piracy, threats, intimidation or abuse will be handled unsympathetically by the moderators. Threats and intimidation may, at the moderator's discretion, be provided to law enforcement for handling.

4) BE FACTUAL: When you post, always be factual. Moderators will remove posts that are determined not to be factually accurate.

5) RESPECT COPYRIGHTS: Posting of copyrighted material such as flight manuals owned by Boeing or various airlines is not allowed in this forum. If you have questions related to copyrighted material, please contact a forum moderator for clarification.

6) RESPECT PMDG: We love to hear what you like about our products. We also like to hear what you think can be improved, or what isn't working. Please do tell us and we will always treat your feedback with value. Just be sure to treat the team respectfully, as they do put a significant amount of effort into building and maintaining these great simulation products for you.

7) RESPECT PMDG DEVELOPERS: All of the developers will spend some time here. Given the ratio of developers-to-users, it simply isn't possible for us to answer every post and private message individually. Please know that we do try to read everything, but developer workload is simply too high to manage personal contact with tens-of-thousands of users simultaneously. In most cases, members of the development team will stick to conversations in the forum and will not answer private messages.

8) RESPECT OTHER DEVELOPERS: PMDG has always advocated for a strong development community and we have many friends within this community. Every developer offers something unique that helps to make the simming community larger and more vibrant. We insist that you treat our friends respectfully.

9) RESPECT MODERATORS: Moderators have a tough job, and none of them enjoy having to stomp out negativity. If a moderator has to weigh in to keep a thread peaceful, please respect that effort and refrain from giving the moderator any grief.

10) If you require official support for any of our products please open a support ticket through the support portal, https://support.precisionmanuals.com

11) This forum is designed primarily as a vehicle for the PMDG development team to interact with our customers, and for customers to interact with one another in a manner that is positive, supportive and assists in the general advancement of understanding the simulation and helping to make this and future simulations better. Any other use of this forum is not permitted, including but not limited to discussion of pricing policies, business practices, forum moderating policies, advertising of non-PMDG products, promotion of events, services or products that are not approved in advance by PMDG or any other topic deemed unacceptable by any forum administrator

12) HAVE FUN: This is the whole point of it all.
See more
See less

[10NOV19] Lets talk about textures and lighting and PBR...

Collapse
This is a sticky topic.
X
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    [10NOV19] Lets talk about textures and lighting and PBR...

    Captains,

    Been monitoring an array of conversations that focus on various opinions related to texture/color on the flight deck and an array if issues that crop up with the polished aluminum surfaces in the default PMDG batch of liveries that we created for you to use.

    I thought it might be beneficial to give the conversation a nudge in the direction of "informed discourse" and away from "malignant conjecture."

    What PMDG Does:
    With PMDG 737NGXu we decided to develop right for the core of P3D v4 for the first time, since we were making a native P3D v4 product. This meant giving the VC and airplane the full PBR treatment, including reflective textures, surfaces, materials and even polished aluminum. Taken by themselves they look fantastic, but they DO require that you have CORRECTLY upgraded your P3D v4 to version 4.4 at least, but they look best under 4.5.

    There are conflicting instructions from Lockheed Martin as to how to go about doing this, but the bottom line is that if you haven't reinstalled BOTH the client and the content of 4.5, you need to. If you don't- highly reflective PBR surfaces will look funny.

    We have worked with dozens of customers who swore up-and-down that they had done this, but we were able to show quite conclusively that things worked perfectly as designed once 4.5 was properly and completely installed. (By this I mean installing both, client and content from a freshly downloaded, most current Prepar3D v4.5 installer.)

    We designed PMDG 737NGXu to look correct from a color/hue/texture standpoint in this environment.


    Now- lets talk about things that may change how things look!

    Reshaders:
    Early in the advent of P3D as a platform, some inventive folks came up with ways to use the reshade process to alter the way the sim appears on your screen. Some folks have become exceptionally good at mixing and matching settings in order to produce some absolutely stunning shading environments, leading me to joke around on occasion that we don't actually need airplanes in some peoples sims- we just need the ability for them to play with shaders.

    The whole point of these reshade processes was to improve the look of the sim, since it had only a rudimentary lighting capability and no reflectivity whatsoever. Then along came Tomato Shade and that tool added reflection capability and suddenly the P3D platform was really looking pretty fancy-schmancy.

    Then Lockheed Martin started to alter the lighting capability of the sim, adding various lighting effects, reflective surfaces and PBR. PBR has had a rough introduction because the night-time version had to be disabled for negative impact on rendering speed, and daytime version is certainly nicer than what we had, but it could still use a bit of tweaking to make it truly stand up and sing.

    The Law of Unintended Consequences:
    The number of reshade options out there right now is a bit like flees on a dog. (Your dog, not mine. My dog has no fleas! ) From PMDG's standpoint, we have always developed our products for compatibility with the core sim, without getting to distracted by whatever addon expansion folks are using at any given moment. (See our policy on FSUIPC, for example, going back... 15i'sh years?)

    Honestly we do not care if you use reshaders or not. I don't use them on a development machine because we need to be looking at the correct, unaltered results in the sim. Reshaders by their very design alter the output and this bad when you are trying to set the baseline for how the thing SHOULD look to the user in a default Prepar3D installation.

    We find that reshaders can have a WIDE array of consequences depending entirely upon the settings that the user has imported. These consequences include:
    • Blown out colors
    • Saturated colors
    • Deepened shadows and darkness
    • Bleached out shadows and whiteness.
    • Alteration of color integration in night lighting.
    • Alteration of surface colors on reflect/polished surfaces.
    How PMDG Approaches Reshaders:
    At PMDG we really don't care if you use reshade or not. We have no specific, formal policy on it because your sim is your sim and you can do what you like with it. It is important to keep in mind that reshaders are effecting change throughout the render process and this will mean changes to the textures both internally and externally. This seems to be *most* apparent when it comes to high-reflective polished aluminum.

    When it comes to choosing how we will texture the VC- we don't consider reshaders, nor can we. There are too many options available for users and it is unreasonable to accommodate the millions of potential variations with the expectation that we can magically correct the changes a reshader makes to the appearance of the simulation.

    When it comes to the exterior model, things do get slightly easier since a livery painter can simply choose to used a brushed aluminum surface rather than a high gloss polished aluminum surface, and negative interaction between the high reflective surfaces and the reshaders are dramatically minimized. (See how we did our 747 default textures for an example.)

    For NGXu we chose to go with high polished aluminum. If you wish to have something else, simply use liveries that don't have these kinds of surfaces (once the painting community creates some) and you will be all set!

    HDR or "Oh Gosh Lockheed Martin, this really isn't HDR...:"
    A hotly debated topic internally at PMDG is whether or not the color adjustment process that Lockheed Martin calls HDR is a "good thing" for simmers or a "bad thing."

    Since I'm doing the writing, I will tell you that it is a horrible thing. Not everyone at PMDG agrees with me... but they is okay... occasionally people who work for PMDG are wrong... and this would be one of those examples...

    What Lockheed Martin calls HDR really is sort of a hybrid color saturation adjustment that imitates the effect of HDR, but doesn't actually protect color representation appropriately. With HDR on, the colors on things like the cockpit displays tend to get blown out, color saturation on the flight deck textures becomes rather dynamic in a manner that is unconvincing, etc.

    When we create the texture sets for the flight deck, we start off with high detail photo surveys done using color correction. These get matched to the Boeing paint spec. Initial blush into the sim is those colors, which in a perfect world would yield perfect results.

    Prepar3D is not a perfect world, and thus the textures require alteration in order to match hue, saturation and color depth.

    Like everything in simming: this becomes a game of feel, and then it becomes even more complex because we have to choose colors that look good with HDR on and HDR off. (before anyone asks, no you can't swap the texture set based on the HDR setting... LOL)

    The other problem we have is that the Prepar3D engine has a naturally LAVENDER (!!) hue, that becomes blueish during high-daytime and deep night. This means that even if we nail the colors perfectly, they will alter in rendering as the sim's daylight situation changes, causing some unrealistic color shifting on various types of surfaces.

    Welcome to being a developer... Nothing is perfect- and you have to find a best-fit and run with it. So this is what we do.

    The end result is that turning HDR on will give you one effect, turning it off will give you another.

    Personally, I leave mine off. I think about 2/3 of the PMDG team turns HDR on.

    Bottom line is that nobody gets a perfect situation.

    Now Lets HDR our Reshade!
    Okay- so we have created a balanced airplane that we think looks best under the default settings of the sim... now the user turns on HDR and adds TomatoShade or some other reshade tool...

    The user now imports one of, say 4,000 reshade profiles that might be of interest to him.

    The best that we can hope for is that the airplane looks pleasing to the user- or that the user understand the impact he is having on the actual visual quality of the sim and either accepts it, or alters it to find the right balance of visual quality and visual accuracy.

    Summary:
    We have seen a lot of folks pulling their hair out and proclaiming that "Xu is broken" because their reshade setting that works perfectly with some other product doesn't look as good with Xu. These are choices over which you have complete control- and we urge you to experiment to find what looks good and what works for you.

    Our airplane, by necessity, must be capable of meeting the needs of the default user. We do our best to make it as flexible as possible so that you have the widest array of choices to suit your personal tastes.

    I hope that little bit of education helps- and we hope that when reshade users start to see some non-polished aluminum from the livery painters you will realize that we have given you the ability to make choices for what looks best in whatever setup you have. We did this with intention, we did this deliberately.

    Enjoy, everyone!





    Robert S. Randazzo
    PMDG Simulations
    http://www.pmdg.com



    #2
    Thankyou Robert for this information it really helps and also feel educated now more regarding textures lighting and PBR.
    Danny Z.Cebis

    Comment


      #3
      Thank you for that detailed explanation, now i can't wait for fs2020 so i can ditch the esp engine and its awful lighting and fake hdr for good!

      -Mike Iacovetta

      Comment


        #4
        Thanks a lot, your explanations were really useful and completely make sense.


        Regards,

        Achmad Ferdi Iskandar (SUB-ID)
        System: P3D v4.5, MSI Z68-A, Intel i7-2700K O/C to 4.7GHz, Noctua NH-U12P SE2, Nvidia GTX 1070
        16Gb Corsair Vengeance, Corsair 850W PSU, Win 7 Pro 64-bit, SAITEK Yoke and Throttle, X52 Joystick
        Pro Flight™ TPM, Switch Panel, Flight Sim Yoke CH, WDC 1TB, Arma Pixxel+ 27" Curve

        Comment


          #5
          For the first time since I've had P3D, I've turned HDR on in 4.5. Took a bit of fiddling, but geez, it looks good now. Flightsimming has come a long way.

          Comment


            #6
            One question about upgrading content vs client. (I only upgrade client - yes, colors are a bit off - but I don't care).

            If you upgrade P3D content, then do you have to reinstall all your planes, liveries, add-on sceneries all over? I am afraid to update content and then having to re-install about 100 airports and 50 planes.
            Paul Gugliotta
            United 257 heavy

            Comment


            • DDowns
              DDowns commented
              Editing a comment
              Paul... Content update does nothing to your addon aircraft, liveries and sceneries. At worst, it changes the inventory of default aircraft from what was default to what is now default with a larger inventory of free stuff.

            #7
            I think it looks absolutely spectacular. No issues here at all.

            Marc Bonaldo
            Armchair Pilot

            Comment


              #8
              Originally posted by Paulyg123 View Post
              If you upgrade P3D content, then do you have to reinstall all your planes, liveries, add-on sceneries all over? I am afraid to update content and then having to re-install about 100 airports and 50 planes.
              Negative. You can update the content without having issues.
              Captain Kevin

              Kevin Yang

              Comment


                #9
                HDR off for me. I find P3D's HDR very unrealistic, particularly the way white produces excessive glare. I have no time for special effects that exaggerate or produce photo image effects.

                Comment


                  #10
                  Is there any chance we can get optional metal textures that are "night friendly". Those black textures at night is kind of an immersion killer. If it's something that can be easily done with a paint software I'd happily do it myself.
                  Best Regards,

                  Amadeo Araujo

                  Comment


                  • DDowns
                    DDowns commented
                    Editing a comment
                    The night lighting issue is strictly a LM challenge, I don't think there is much an addon that uses DL can do with the lighting source unless the light source is theirs.

                  #11
                  Amadeo,

                  We aren't planning to issue optional textures on the PMDG side. Our understanding is that Lockheed Martin is going to issue a fix for the night problems, and then things will pop back to normalcy without us then having to "undo" a temporary fix.

                  It is important to note that this only affects certain types of high-polish surfaces that we chose to use. Most livery painters don't make this choice and used brushed aluminum or low polish aluminum and those surfaces look more normal at night. (You can see this on the 747, where we used those lower reflective surfaces.)

                  We are going to publish the paintkits here shortly and then I am sure the market will flood with options for you.

                  Robert S. Randazzo
                  PMDG Simulations
                  http://www.pmdg.com


                  Comment


                    #12
                    Hello

                    I did exactly that when reading this, I was trying to eliminate a totally blueish texture cockpit. I deleted shaders and ShadersHLSL then rebuild, eliminated tomatoe shaders or any external shaders program. It looks beautiful in my eyes now.

                    Thank you RSR, you guys are the best.
                    David J Guillen

                    Comment


                      #13
                      David,

                      Thanks for reporting in. Glad to know it worked out.

                      I think you will find that some shader profiles play better than others. We certainly aren't saying users should do without- just that it is helpful to know that you may need to shop around a bit to find ones that work well inside/outside and inbetween!

                      Robert S. Randazzo
                      PMDG Simulations
                      http://www.pmdg.com


                      Comment


                        #14
                        Great thread, and very helpful! Just purchased this excellent update. Reading the thread, I had not updated the P3D content recently. I did notice an improvement in the general appearance and PBR. I returned to PTA from Tomato shade. This combined with the updated content made the cockpit seems somewhat brighter than before. (I see some colleagues have been having problems with darkness.) Further, grateful to those who reassured the Content does not remove aircraft et al!

                        Many thanks,

                        Keith Giannoni

                        Comment


                          #15
                          Hello,
                          I was wondering why is my cockpit dark and the the leading edge of the wing and front of the cowling is black.
                          Stacey St.Romain KIAH

                          Comment


                            #16
                            Originally posted by stro19 View Post
                            Hello,
                            I was wondering why is my cockpit dark and the the leading edge of the wing and front of the cowling is black.
                            Are you using any shader mods? Dynamic reflections enabled in the settings? Please note that this question has come up more than a few times here in the forum, and you might be served quicker if you take a quick look around to see if any of the several threads has a fix for you.
                            Kyle Rodgers
                            PMDG Simulations

                            Comment


                              #17
                              Just the ENVSHADE,ENVDIR, ENVTEX..
                              Stacey St.Romain KIAH

                              Comment


                                #18
                                Originally posted by stro19 View Post
                                Just the ENVSHADE,ENVDIR, ENVTEX..
                                Well there's the issue. Please read the original post in this thread.
                                Kyle Rodgers
                                PMDG Simulations

                                Comment


                                  #19
                                  For anyone using PTA, the tweak that turns off the HDR luminance adaptation effect is what makes the cockpit very dark.
                                  Niklas Graefe

                                  Comment


                                    #20
                                    threegreen Im using PTA, how I can fix using your tip above? thanks.
                                    Efrain Rodriguez
                                    P3Dv4.5
                                    i7 6700K 4.6 OC GTX1070 16RAM


                                    Comment


                                    • threegreen
                                      threegreen commented
                                      Editing a comment
                                      Uncheck the tweak "Turn off HDR luminance adaptation effect" and reapply your preset.

                                    #21
                                    Do we have any aircraft mechanics online from PMDG or Robert yourself if your not busy, I'd like one of you stop by my stream, see if you can't help me fix something on my plane or if it needs to be done by you guys on your side, but one of my SSW 737-900ER only the one side of the map lights work, Captain side is not coming on or lighting up and I don't know if its something I turned off accidentally not knowing I did or even anything I can have done or can be done on my side, my other planes seem to be working fine. This one I am in right now though is giving me issues..

                                    Its hard to tell I know in daylight hours but when you turn the FO side you can tell the other isn't working..







                                    https://www.twitch.tv/skypilot_bill yea if you Robert or one of your guys that can maybe fix this issue, can swing by my stream real quick, I'll show in real time what its doing, maybe A you can help me fix it right there if its something I can on my side or B something you'll have to fix for next update that I can't do from my side.. I just figure its easier to show someone what I am referring too in real time over just sending pictures.. Back n forth..

                                    Comment


                                      #22
                                      Originally posted by UnitedBill36 View Post
                                      Do we have any aircraft mechanics online from PMDG or Robert yourself if your not busy, I'd like one of you stop by my stream, see if you can't help me fix something on my plane or if it needs to be done by you guys on your side, but one of my SSW 737-900ER only the one side of the map lights work, Captain side is not coming on or lighting up and I don't know if its something I turned off accidentally not knowing I did or even anything I can have done or can be done on my side, my other planes seem to be working fine. This one I am in right now though is giving me issues..
                                      Solved. HUD was the issue.
                                      Captain Kevin

                                      Kevin Yang

                                      Comment


                                      • UnitedBill36
                                        UnitedBill36 commented
                                        Editing a comment
                                        Thanks again Captain.. aka Ground Mechanic.. I do appreciate that help..

                                      #23
                                      Don't think there's much you can do about that. With older freeware, I would have just painted past the boundaries of the paint kit, but it appears that that method won't work here since that particular area is already at the end of the texture file.
                                      Captain Kevin

                                      Kevin Yang

                                      Comment


                                        #24
                                        I have upgraded to v4.5 have no shaders installed, and have the same dark cockpit problem. (I did a complete in reinstall of the client/content, and deleted the shaders folder)

                                        If I switch HDR on the cockpit it looks much better but everytthing else outside the cockpit looks terrible.

                                        Can anyone offer any suugestions?

                                        Comment


                                        • DDowns
                                          DDowns commented
                                          Editing a comment
                                          Add a touch of flood light. Unless the sun in shining on the panel it is going to seem dark.

                                        #25
                                        Thanks for that info Robert, I reverted back to default shaders and I just use REX environment force for scene lighting and I must say it’s brilliant.
                                        Angus Rowlands i7 8700, RTX 2080, 16GB Ram, Windows 10 Home. 737,777,747,DC6

                                        Comment


                                          #26

                                          The model is amazing and the PBR and texturing are extremely impressive!

                                          Cant wait to get all the products in FS2020!! had me at hello!

                                          Flightsim4.png
                                          Last edited by oblongmushroom; 29Nov2019, 18:18.
                                          Ro Faulk

                                          Monitor ROG PG27U 4K 144HZ
                                          i9,9900K 5.0GHZ, 64GB RAM, SSD 2TB M.2 OS drive, Dual EVGA 2080Ti NVLinked GPU's, MSI, GODlike Z390 MB.

                                          Comment

                                          Working...
                                          X