Bump maps and textures
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Thread: Bump maps and textures

  1. #1
    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    Bump maps and textures

    1. If I was able to make a bump map using Gimp, I assume I would base it on the dds textures files. Once I had achieved that, what would I do with the bump map? Need a tutorial on that.

    2. Textures. I assume making a 2018 texture is not just a question of changing the texture from 1024 to 2048?

    Cato said "Carthaginem esse delendam"
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    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    No one?

    Cato said "Carthaginem esse delendam"
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  3. #3
    Once you have a file in the proper Bump Map Format you need to save it with the .+nm suffix, and place it in the aircraft's texture folder (it will actually work from anywhere, but this keeps it organized).
    For example:
    n1k2RS_1.dds gets n1k2RS_1.+nm.dds added.

    If you draw a new texture if can be any square size multiple starting from 2. 4, 8, 16, 32, 64, 128, 256, 512, 1024, 2048, 4096, etc. When you save the bitmap as a dds there are a number of different dds compressed and uncompressed formats, with and without LOD textures to choose from. If you don't have it automatically generate the LODs for you the DDS will remain square, otherwise it will become a 2x1 rectangle. If the bitmap as boundaries with sharp contrasts you may notice ugly stair-step color artifacts with the compressed file modes in the sizes below 2048.
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  4. #4
    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    I'll have a go!

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  5. #5
    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    OK I am having trouble with the bump mapping as can be seen from my thread on the gimp forum here

    https://www.gimp-forum.net/Thread-bu...d=9311#pid9311

    One guy insists I need the original layered texture files or make new ones myself (not happening or ? necessary)
    The other guy rich2005 is more helpful, but obiously I am doing something wrong. For a start I don't seem to be able to overlay one layer on another although I can merge them.

    Any help or step by step instruction would be appreciated. Also I don'r see how I can use the same bump map with all the (same) aircraft unless I am meant to just save a file which is texture non specific.

    Cato said "Carthaginem esse delendam"
    I say "Carthago iam diu deleta,sed enim Bellum Alium adhuc aedificandum est"

  6. #6
    well, the final result depends hows the current final texture skin. GIMP, Paint.NET, PhotoShop or whatelse bitmap editor or any special tool with bump/normal map procedures just makes the paint areas bumpy from the original texture, so:

    if you have just the end-user skin with various camouflage patterns, decals, markings etc. they would become bumpy too. in another words, you will need to remove (retouche) such areas from the skin first and then generate the bump/normal map. or you can edit the generated bump/normal map later and retouche the problematic areas there.

    if you have a layered texture source, you can save a lot time / to avoid of the retouche edits

  7. #7
    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    Well I am looking at Fouteman's aircraft updates but AFAIK he has lost all origianls as he asked me for copies of the aircraft. I am wondering if Andy has the originals for his bump mapping? What you are implying is that I would have to make a texture with just the rivets and any indented parts?

    Cato said "Carthaginem esse delendam"
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  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by mongoose View Post
    What you are implying is that I would have to make a texture with just the rivets and any indented parts?
    exactlly. rivets, panel lines, gun holes, that should be the right source for the bumpmap.

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    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    So... Andy are you doing the hard way or only on ac which you have the full texture file layers?

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  10. #10
    The hard way, but in some cases I can use PhotoShop to manipulate the *_s.dds file, if there is one, to get what I need.
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  11. #11
    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    Well the s.dds is grey scale; is that easier?

    Cato said "Carthaginem esse delendam"
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  12. #12
    That depends on if it was purpose built with just the panel lines and shading, or if it was simply done as the standard texture converted to grey scale.
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  13. #13
    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    Getting quickly back to this; what aircraft are uploaded with bump mapping? Dan's Fw190s?? Need an example for someone.

    EDIT

    Never mind I think I have got the Fw190s +nm files.

    Cato said "Carthaginem esse delendam"
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  14. #14

    crash course for dummys

    perhaps this is the best place to post this request, but could you please help me out with a step by step crash course on how to make bump textures?

    this is what i understood so far:

    the bump texture is an extra texture file for your aircraft. no need to mess with other files like the m3d file. the bump texure has the same name as the "normal" texture, but with suffix .+nm.dds. = myaircraft_t.dds and myaircraft_t.+nm.dds

    1 - so the normal/usual myaircraft_t.dd file and myaircraft_s.dds can still be in the format i'm used to saving them (dxt 1 opaque)? so no chances here?

    i've loaded my template in my usual editor, made a greyscale version of my base color with my panel and rivets layer. panel in darker shade than base layer for "depression". rivets in lighter shade for "elevation". saved this as a single layer 24 bit bitmap (full colour, no alpha channel) and loaded in gimp
    in gimp i run the generate normalmap filter, was able to see elevation and depression in 3d preview and after clicking ok the greyscale image turned "blue" and elevation and depression visible.

    2 - so far so good (isn't it???), but so what comes next????
    There's only one Foute Man........

  15. #15
    Blue one is the good one.
    Now just put it where the original airplane texture / skin is and rename the blue dds file with the +nm convention. Run the game and set Ankors Shaders on. Thats all in base.

  16. #16
    Yes, as BorekS said, you can use "blue" 24/32 bit dds texture as is. BTW, it is not even necessary to place it in the same folder as aircraft, but it is a good practice.

    However uncompressed texture will be huge.
    Ordinary DXT compression is not suitable for these textures, but you can save it using ATI2 compression.
    There should be many tools to do this, but I like AMD Compressonator 1.50 for its simplicity. There are newer versions, but they look confusing.
    I can't find it on AMD site anymore, so here I uploaded it:
    https://1drv.ms/u/s!AvmtwF9vPtwVgZJa4JbYOlzTFEYmTQ

    It can also generate nice mip-maps with a lot of options.


    And just to avoid confusion "aircraft_t.dds" is technically called "diffuse map". Calling it "normal texture" is ambiguous, because what you are creating for bump mapping is technically a "normal map" (where "normal" is a vector)

  17. #17
    to the bumpmap/normal map creation I would have my 2c:

    I am using such features for years and tested many bitmap tools to create the "common" DDS and the "bumpy" DDS files. latest few years I am totally happy with Paint.NET (free) + two related plug-ins, it does it all in a few clicks. my common DDS are DXT1 no alpha, DXT1 1bit alpha, or DXT5 for smooth (linear) transparent gradients, works perfect at all my race game add-ons and same with CFS3. it also does products much less of the awfull pixel aterfacts doe the DDS file comperssion algorythm, comparing to the other tools.

    I just wanted to say there is no need to use the GIMP moloch or the PhotoShop monster software with their oversofisticated user interface for such work.

  18. #18
    The Nvidia Tool in PhotoShop lets you save the normal map in either DXT5 or 3Dc compression formats.
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  19. #19

    crash course for dummys part 2

    thanks for the replies and the tools:

    so some more questions as i've been reading some tutorials about bump mapping, but they're all written for other games, so here some (stupid) follow up questions:

    how to export in gimp:

    - create mipmaps and export file as a dds in any format. to get it working in cfs 3 i need to compress the dds file with a tool like The Compressonator 1.50 and save the file as a dxt5 image, but what subtype of dxt5?

    - some tutorials for fsx suggest opening the file exported with gimp in modelconverterx and convert it to fs format. i also need to flip the bitmap. do i need to convert the file in modelconverterx and do i need to flip the texture?

    untill so far i made the myaircraft_s.dds file always a bit lighter than their original greyscale. do i need to darken the myaircrafft_s.dds file or is there no relationship between the two?

    as i do not have the ankor shader installed, i noticed a lot of uploads with different dates? do i need to download and install all of them, or is the upload with the latest date the most up to date versions of all required files?
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  20. #20
    Charter Member 2016 mongoose's Avatar
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    Further to Ton's

    We have tried 2 versions of bump maps; onr in the MediaFire link and one here. I also have added pics from the 1st bump map but basically the same as the 2nd.

    Now as one rotates around the aircraft one gets the "blue" or washed-out effect which almost looks like a specular issue to me; proably nothing to do with that!

    So the ? is what's wrong?

    bfexxx_1_3.+nm.rar the first .+nm


    below contains the 2nd

    http://www.mediafire.com/file/c88dxg..._maps.rar/file



    bfexxx_1_3.+nm.rar

    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails bumpmap 2.jpg   bumpmap 4.jpg  

    Cato said "Carthaginem esse delendam"
    I say "Carthago iam diu deleta,sed enim Bellum Alium adhuc aedificandum est"

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by mongoose View Post
    Further to Ton's

    We have tried 2 versions of bump maps; onr in the MediaFire link and one here. I also have added pics from the 1st bump map but basically the same as the 2nd.

    Now as one rotates around the aircraft one gets the "blue" or washed-out effect which almost looks like a specular issue to me; proably nothing to do with that!

    So the ? is what's wrong?

    bfexxx_1_3.+nm.rar the first .+nm


    below contains the 2nd

    http://www.mediafire.com/file/c88dxg..._maps.rar/file



    bfexxx_1_3.+nm.rar
    the rar files are the same, attached the second nm file, also the others textures
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 2048_bob_bf109e105_t.jpg   2048_bob_bf109e105_s.jpg  
    Attached Files Attached Files
    There's only one Foute Man........

  22. #22
    You only need the latest AnKor Shader install package.

    The _s file appears to be too light leading to excessive reflectivity. For a painted aircraft the average _s brightness should be in 5-8% gray range. For bare aluminum it can be 10-16%.

    What's important about the starting image when creating a +nm file is the relative range of brightness values, and not how dark or light the average value is. A big variation will make the dips and bumps stand out more. A narrow range will make the effect more subtle and flat.

    When checking the result of your +nm file, start with getting the base texture, and _s file to look the way you want first. Then add the +nm, and look at it from a variety of different angles and lighting conditions. The normal mapping effect is dependent on reflected light to show itself, and you may not be able to see it at all sometimes, even if it's working correctly.
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  23. #23
    I've downloaded the bfe105_3.+nm.dds file and I see the problem - it is in DXT5 format, but it should not be.

    Let me explain step by step how you should do it with Compressonator 1.50:

    - Start with "blue-magenta" image in 24 bit BMP, not compressed in any way.
    - Open it with the compressonator
    - First, click "Generate Mips" in the toolbar (the label to the left of this button says "Box-Filter", it can be changed, but I think the default one is ok for normal maps)
    - After that, click "Compress" (the label to the left of compress should say "ATI 3Dc Compression" - this is what we need)
    - In the new window choose "ATI2N" (second option) and click "Compress"
    - The tool will show 3 smaller windows: Original texture on the left, Difference in the middle and Compressed on the right.
    - You should visually check that Original and Compressed look almost the same and Difference is black.
    - In the menu click File -> Save Compressed and save your new texture as "+nm.dds"

    That's it.
    You don't have to flip the bitmap in any way, swap any color channels or do anything else.

    ATI2N is a special compression format, developed specifically for normal maps. It wasn't standard in DX9, but became standard in DX10 (albeit with a different name) and thus all GPUs made in last 10+ years support it.

    The above is enough, but here is some extra info if you are interested. I don't want to confuse anyone with too much information
    The problem with DXT5 compression and normal maps is that DXT5 introduces crosstalk between color channels. While this is usually not noticeable for ordinary textures, it causes artifacts for normals.
    The trick to avoid the crosstalk is to move one of two required color channels into the alpha channel. It was first used in Doom 3 I think. It is supported by my shaders and as I understand it is used by FSX as well: https://www.fsdeveloper.com/wiki/ind...l_map_creation
    However for ATI2 you do NOT need to do it, and ATI2 provides better quality than using this DX5 trick while file size is the same.

    Finally, you can just save the DDS texture without any compression. Something like 24-bit RGB or whatever it is called. This is also supported by my shaders, but the DDS file will obviously be larger than a compressed one.

    So, in summary:
    My shaders support 3 types of "+nm" textures.
    - 3Dc ATI2 - good quality, created with compressonator, or NVidia tools for Photoshop, or whatever other tool can do this.
    - DXT5 with Alpha "trick" - ok quality, almost any tool can save DXT5, but you have to move red color channel into alpha somehow.
    - Uncompressed DDS - best quality, but large file. The file must contain 3 color channels for normal map.

    One more thing.
    If you are creating an "extra" specular map specifically for my shaders (+sr.dds) you can save it in ATI1N format (also available in compressonator). This is special format for grayscale images and provides better quality than DXT1. However it is NOT supported for standard "_s" textures for CFS3.

    Hope it helps

  24. #24
    hmm, I really wonder how soooo easy thing like dds textures and its normal maps you can achieve so compliacted way. I have to laugh.

  25. #25
    BorekS, lol, it doesn't look too complex for me. I just offered a generic solution on how to create a suitable dds from a bitmap. I'm a programmer, not an artist

    I think I tried a normal map plugin (not sure which one, I believe there are a few of them) for Paint.net and it worked, but I don't have it right now and can't provide any details its use.
    I also used NVidia Photoshop plugin - it is good, but again it was so long ago I can't comment on it.
    And GIMP is a monstrosity about which I don't know much

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