- Mon Aug 05, 2013 6:33 pm
I didn´t knew it existed, but now that i know I think it is a good tool, and i will use it!
So, I voted option 3.
But if you are going to change the material editor User Interface, there are things to improve:
In general terms It is so complex, that it helps the user to get confused. For me it is a Pain! Definitely the weakest point in Maxwell Render. Specially in complex materials, it happens to me that i know what i want, but cannot succeed achieving it in Maxwell. It takes lots of errors / corrections through slow rendering process, that finnally ends with my available deadline, and proceed rendering with any material that was not the intended.
It is virtually IMPOSSIBLE to understand a material with a single sight. It is necesary to look at all the layers see the masks and the opacity to have an idea of how it is working, and then the worse thing is editing it!! For instance I had a material which was a mix between plastic and metal, and i wanted to make it darker, I had to edit 5 diferent layers and it was not what i wanted! What is frustrating is that I knew that i wanted it darker, but it was impossible to do so, and keeping all the other caracteristics fixed. Each time you touch something, it changes all, which is starting again from scratch!
I have lots of materials in my library like this: pool water 001, pool water 001 pool water 003 pool water 004 pool water 005 and on and on, and could never decide which is the right one.
I would LOVE some simple slider LIGHTER / DARKER, or REFLECTIVE / MATTE, TRANSPARENT / OPAQUE which shouldn´t change the way maxwell works, but only how the user interacts with maxwell. I find that the way it works now is phisically correct, but those values do not tell the user anything in terms of THE LOOK. I feel that I have to TRANSLATE all the time those complex values to UNDERSTANDABLE terms but cannot succeeed because they are not lineal, but complex equations.
The way most users try to make this more prediictable is creating new layers. Then in one layer you have a REFLECTIVE material, and in the other a MATE material, and then mixing them 50% and 50% you could get a MEDIUM REFLECTIVE material, but each time you do so, it gets more complex and if you need it darker or lighter you are forced to edit two layers or create two more with two materials so that you could mix them 50% and 50% to get a medium gray, but if you need to change the colour now you have to edit 4 layers and on and on....
In my opinion this is INSANE!
If we could have a simple slider from 0 to 100 for instance for REFLECTIVITY, I will know that in 50 it will be half reflective. That would be simply UNDERSTANDABLE
If I were you (Next Limit Team) would use a more simple traditional interface. Inside the software, you could still have all the complexity that real phiscs require, but the user needs to know HOW WOULD IT LOOK with each parameter change.
In my opinion a user interface has to be easy to understand, if not it is not a good user interface, but an obstacle to overcome to get a good rendering.
I do not mean loosing what we have now, but create a User Interface Mask that would easy to handle and a preedictable behaviour.
Last edited by Ernesto on Mon Aug 05, 2013 7:11 pm, edited 1 time in total.