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Ambient occlusion from normal map


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#1 Rhino

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 01:44 PM

I'm using Per pixel painting to paint normal map information and I want to also get the ambient occlusion that the normal maps would generate if they were geometry. I notice that there's a 'Calc occlusion' option, but that also bakes occlusion for the geometry as well, which I would rather do in xNormal. Is there a way to just bake the normal map occlusion? I see that Crazy Bump has a way to generate occlusion from a normal map, but it's something like $299 dollars for that one function, which is crazy money.

While I'm at it, is there any way to paint 'no specularity' onto a layer? If I'm getting this right, you can only paint positive specular information and not negative. i.e. if I have specularity on layer 1, to erase that specularity information I have to erase the specularity on layer 1 rather than painting 'black' or whatever onto the specularity of layer 2. Is this the case?

Thanks in advance.

#2 Rhino

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Posted 10 March 2012 - 11:21 PM

OK, it turns out that you can just paint black into the specularity channel of the upper most layer and it cancels out all other specularity in the lower layers, which is great - just how I would want it to work.

So...any thoughts on the ambient occlusion part? Or am I better off importing my model into the Microvertex painting mode and actually generating the geometry that xNormal can bake an occlusion map from?

#3 T.H. ROCK

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 07:39 AM

There is this software that is fairly inexpensive that bakes ambient occlusion onto meshes (high to low res). Not sure if it is what you need.
http://getsmak.net/

#4 T.H. ROCK

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Posted 12 March 2012 - 04:04 AM

Sorry, I should stop answering questions on this board pretending like I actually know something. I shall stop that bad habit immediately.

#5 Rhino

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Posted 12 March 2012 - 12:21 PM

Sorry, I should stop answering questions on this board pretending like I actually know something. I shall stop that bad habit immediately.


LOL...well thanks for the help all the same. I will look into Smak, but I think that you still need geometry to generate the AO, just like xNormal.

@AbnRanger - thanks for your help, I will either generate the geometry needed or try CrazyBump.




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