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R Reynolds

*A:M User*
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Everything posted by R Reynolds

  1. That's unexpected since it's the latest H.265 HEVC codec. It even runs on my Android 7.1.1 phone. But then the Alphabet overlords have won.😉 Let's try the older H.264 AVC codec; see attached. You and I have been down this road before, Rob. We've even tried using the same monitor calibration images without success. For reasons unknown, monitor images that are acceptable to me are too dark for you. I'm beginning to believe our problem isn't technical, it's aesthetic. And to reinforce that idea, I offer this. To me, the video looks equally acceptable on my desktop monitor (which I've calibrated a number of times) and on my phone (which I've never calibrated). I think we're going to have to agree to disagree. Be that as it may, in my standard outdoor sunlight chor I always have AO on and there are eight, inward aimed, no-shadow sunlights (4% intensity) pointing up to simulate bounce light from the ground. But that still didn't cut it, the interior was too dark, even for me. 😄 So there's a diffuse klieg at every large window (35 total, see attached) with intensities set at 3.5%. If I had to appeal to a focus group of robcats, I could easily make the interior brighter than full sunlight. I toyed with the idea of gradually changing the histograms of the original frames as you walk through the door to simulate the camera's AGC adjusting to the interior light but then the exterior would be lost in over-exposure, a sacrifice I'm not yet willing to make. street_car_walkthru_720x480_H264_AVC.mp4
  2. I wanted to get the effect of a "climbing aboard" video using a phone. I probably could have sold it better if I had rendered it in portrait mode but I simply refuse that particular form of insanity. street_car_walkthru.mp4
  3. It may not exactly be "rolling stock" but it runs on rails so I'm rolling it out of the factory. The PCC (President's Conference Committee) style of street car was the type used all over North America during the 1940's, 50's and 60's, This was an attempt to design a standard, modern street car that would keep cities from paving over their street car rails. And we all know how that turned out. I remember travelling as a kid to Toronto where these types of street cars were kept running long past their design lifetimes. I liked their shape then and I still do.
  4. I've been updating some of my old models including this wooden desk chair. The large image is from today, the small inset image was rendered on Dec. 20, 1997. If nothing else my colour sense seems to have improved.
  5. Of course...It was the player not the file! After running the avi through other players the source of the problem was clear. My VLC video effects switch was not turned on, so I'll have to do some more investigating. Thanks Robert. Now how do I erase Issue 7027 in Mantis?
  6. I was experimenting with saving an image series as an uncompressed AVI and I noticed that the brightness and contrast in the avi was different than the original frames. So I cooked up a grayscale test pattern, gray scale frame.tga. I made 30 sequentially numbered copies and saved them as an uncompressed avi (gray_scale_01.avi attached). Then I did a screen grab of the video on VLC. That screen grab is shown in the lower half of the attached comparison image...obviously something has changed. This is consistent with what I've been seeing in other, more typical images. After submitting a bug report to Steffen, I started looking around for other programs to stitch image sequences and found VirtualDub from 2013. So I unpack its zip, fire up the program and after some time with the help files I produce an avi from the same 30 copies of my test pattern. Much to my surprise it has exactly the same problem! Not a similar problem mind you, it modifies the 21 gray levels by the identical values. Now I'm beginning to think that I'm missing something...any suggestions? gray_scale_01.avi test_pattern_compare.tga gray scale frame.tga
  7. Afraid not...the outbound route will have to be carefully chosen.
  8. Although I've said one's interest in any flat car is proportional to the loads it's carrying, even an empty drop-centre flat car with its curved side beams is inherently more striking. Since such a flat car is designed to haul over-sized cargo it's important to load it with something more than just a very large crate. Something like this steam hammer that may still be functional but has seen better days.
  9. Thanks for your efforts Robert. I tried your idea but the render bug you mentioned was more severe in my case in that I could only get the desired results in a final render if I was rendering from an isometric view (v19e). I had similar render problems with my own attempts at both pose and action based solutions. Camera view progressive and final renders yielded inconsistent results. I'll revisit this technique if and when Steffen can fix it but for now I'll simply have four versions of the same model with different decal sets...brute force but guaranteed results.
  10. This was a really tantalizing idea but I couldn't make it work. I went with applying all the required decals to the model and only the desired ones are selected using an ON/OFF pose; four sets of decals with four poses. It worked like a charm while editing the poses and with only one instance of the model in a chor. But within the chor, a model's decals are not appended with a number that gives them a unique name for that instance. So the second model's decals are affected by the pose of the first model. I tried renaming the decals in the second model instance but that isn't allowed. Too bad.
  11. I just tried v19l Netrender and it doesn't seem to find the paths to all the various components; forcing me to lead it to every model in the chor. I tried consolidating the project into a new folder but it stopped after loading the project, not asking to select a chor. Would someone please confirm this in case I'm doing something wrong? Thanks.
  12. The next boxcar is the more modern style with the brake wheel mounted vertically to the end wall. Once again I used the same model but put different signage on other side. CPR with NYC, N&W with PRR. I got carried away with detailing when I found a good reference image of a vintage NYC waybill. I reproduced it in PSPro and filled in the blanks with Lorem Ipsum words.
  13. This was an intriguing idea Robert. It was also a bit daunting since I've never used poses before so I had to do some forum research. Your "Basics of making a new pose" from '09 was quite helpful. After spending a day of trial, error and documentation, I think I have a good handle on it and will use it on the tank car I'm currently building. Thanks!
  14. The first type of boxcar I built was the older style where the handbrake wheel is mounted horizontally above the roof line. In order to maximize the number of boxcars, I decided to cheat and put a different railroad line and specs on each side of a single car. This scheme only breaks down when looking at the end of a single car where you see the two different numbers. However once the two cars are connected together and their ends are somewhat obscured I now have two boxcars for the price of one model.
  15. LT WT (light weight) is the weight of the empty car. As you've guessed, LD LMT (load limit) is the builder's recommendation for a maximum safe load while CAPY (capacity) is the absolute maximum load the wheel bearings can withstand.
  16. Next up, a flat car. I've always felt one's interest in passing flat cars is proportional to the loads they're carrying, making an endless line of container cars extremely boring. Having said that, large steel pipes are pretty plain as well (but low in patch count). So I went a bit overboard on the material textures for the rusty steel and woven tie down straps.
  17. Before I move on to the next railcar I beg your indulgence while I brag about getting a believable "look" to the rear running lights. The rear facing lenses are tinted red with the other three are tinted green. The light from the internal bulb is quasi collimated i.e. the lamps appear illuminated only if viewed close to on-axis with the lenses. I wheeled the caboose back into the dark factory to get a better view.
  18. Let's start at the end of the train with the caboose. They went out of style in the 1980's but I still think they're the "right" away to finish off a line of railroad cars.
  19. I've been spending my lock-down time giving my steam locomotive something to pull. I'll use this topic to display all of my railroad cars as they're rolled out of the factory. Since showcasing my renders on a personal web site is so 20th century I've decided to make the plunge to Instagram. But the phone-size 1080x608 limit is a bit small for my taste so I'll be putting up the hi-res versions here.
  20. I've discovered a render glitch in v19j1 and I need to send the entire project to Mantis. Is Consolidate sufficient or do I need to Embed All as well?
  21. I remember going down this road with you before when I submitted my contest image. I was able to reproduce your monitor photo results almost exactly with my image also displayed beside a calibration image. But it's not like I'm going out of my way to produce dark images, it just depends on the subject matter because my lighting setup never changes. The render shows the unlit interior of a diner on a sunny day. The first attached image shows the driver of a cab (partially reflected in the diner's window) standing outside using the same sunny day lighting. Next to him is my reference white sphere. The RGB value on the sphere's surface facing the sun is 255, 255, 255 and the surrounding area somewhat saturated as I suspect it would be to your eye. The RGB value on his shadowed dark brown shoe is 11, 9, 7, so just barely visible. I chose my lighting intensities to achieve this dynamic range. All my materials' colour values are chosen by how they work when they're sitting outside in the sun next to my reference sphere. The second attachment shows the cab driver next to the calibration image on my monitor. The increased contrast comes from the imager in my cheap phone. Would you prefer to see the first Netrender image of the cab driver? As you can see, it's histogram is pretty limited as well. Perhaps I should take the monitor calibration image, decal it to a surface and render that?
  22. Before I begin trying to find the source of this bug I'd like some opinions as to what might be happening. Attached are two "versions" of four sequential TIF files (545 through 548) from an on-going Netrender job. If there is a "b" (for bad) in the filename it is the first frame rendered by any one of the my four cores. If there is a "g" (for good) it was either not a Netrender first frame or it could be any frame rendered within A:M itself. I've numbered the files so you can sequentially show them bad, good, bad, etc. When I cycle through them on my monitor, the bad ones seem a bit darker and noisier but nothing that says "obviously this is what's wrong"; they're just poorer quality. All subsequent Netrender images are totally fine. The work-around is trivial but wastes some render time. Debug will take stripping down the choreography until this stops happening but I'm open to suggestions as what to change/remove first. 01_b0545.tif 02_g0545.tif 03_b0546.tif 04_g0546.tif 05_b0547.tif 06_g0547.tif 07_b0548.tif 08_g0548.tif
  23. This became a good news, bad news, good news story. I successfully reproduced your example in v19e. GOOD Used the technique in a car steering project but every time the project was saved, closed and re-opened, the constraint aiming the steering bone roll handle at the null went wacky and needed repairing meaning it couldn't work using Netrender. BAD Used your technique to properly position a null under the car's front axle, then constrained a second null to translate to and orient like the front axle null, then constrained the roll handle of the steering bone to point at the second null. This always survived the project close and re-open. GOOD Thanks again for your efforts Robert.
  24. That's wonderful Robert. Since I'm stuck at v19e (unless Steffen can solve the Enhance:AM issue) I'll have to use that v18 workaround forever. Thanks very much.
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