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Everything posted by Altivec

  1. Thanks michaelk, I kept checking in service select under the downloads/vectorworks viewer. It only goes up to 2014 in there. Maybe Jim could advise them to add the link.
  2. Any word on Vectorworks viewer 2015? Usually they are very prompt at getting this out.
  3. When I tried that before, VW crashed but I just did more thorough testing and got some different results. If I minimize before going into another application it seems to work but if I try minimizing after its already stealing focus, it just unminimizes itself (weird). I'll just have to remember to minimize before going elsewhere until a fix can me made. Hopefully you can recreate the behaviour so you don't think I'm crazy.
  4. Hi Jim, Loving 2015 so far. I'm not sure if this is the appropriate place to mention bugs or not but I found a small but annoying one. When I am rendering a viewport in a sheet layer, I usually like to check my mail (OSX Mail) or browse the internet (Safari) while I wait. Although when you switch to those applications everything seems fine, things go bad when you enter text into the search field in mail, or Url field in safari. As soon as you hit enter, the vectorworks window pops up in front. If you try to switch back to the other program, it only sticks for a second before the vectorworks window pops back up in front again. It only resolves itself once the rendering is complete. I like to call this bug "boss mode" because it forces you to get back to work.
  5. Not sure why? When you open a 2014 file it tells you that it has to convert it to 2015. Then when saving it prompts you for a new name with the suffix 2015 after it. In order to overwrite the file you have to manually name it exactly the same as your 2014 file.
  6. That makes sense. It just looked so magical on the video. I think the part that I feel missing compared to the video is seeing the full effect of the deform in real time as opposed to seeing a simplified wireframe and only seeing the final result after everything is done. Like I said its not a big deal to me because the main thing is that we can now easily do some amazing shapes that would have required major work to accomplish before. I would however suggest that the video guys tone down their embellishments in the future as many people are not as understanding as me and I believe it could cause the company some grief. Lastly I just want to say. The stability is just amazing. I've been pushing this thing hard to crash. I would have crashed at least 50 times in 2014 and not even once in 2015. Fantastic Job!!!!
  7. I am liking the new deform tools... I am just wondering if there is a way to display the on screen dial interface like what is shown in the video or was that just some video editing fluffery. not a big deal because the tools are great, its just not how I was expecting them to work.
  8. Although I sent in emails many times with my own wish lists, I never entered them into this site. I did not know that was the process, or that the powers that be looked here. I will create some wish list entries shortly.
  9. Nooooooo! Why is this not on the top of the list. This is such a basic necessity. This also dampens my enthusiasm for the texture retention in 3ds imports. I find that most textures are asymmetric when created in other software so although they import okay (So I am assuming there is independent x-y scaling happening somewhere inside vectorworks) when you go and try to edit anything the texture goes back to being symmetric and messes everything up. Please oh please make sure that this goes on a priority list.
  10. So far this is shaping up to be the biggest update ever (Sheeesh, I am starting to sound like Apple). Its really looking good. Is there finally separate x and y texture scaling. In other words can I stretch a texture to fit an object?
  11. All I can say is YES!!! YESSSSS!!! Thank You. Now when you say you can answer some of our technical questions, is there anything else that you can give us some insight to or do we have to ask specifically. I am extremely excited as I am operating VW2014 at its limits and its holding me back from what I want to do. This just feels like its going to open a huge door, so in order for me to start the thinking process of what to do hardware wise, I have a couple of technical questions: I know when 64bit transitions happened in the past for other developers efficiency went down the drain (cough Adobe) . Have you noticed if in VW, the same tasks require more cpu or ram? Also, have you experienced how well VW performs when working on larger files with millions of polygons. If you have enough ram, does it bog down or does it chug along as if you had a model with less than a million? Thanks
  12. Thanks Jim, If you are assuring me that my work will strictly be used for debugging and will be completely destroyed thereafter and in no way will any of my work be distributed without my permission, I will send you a file sometime next week. I just don't have the time today to go through one and document reproducible errors.
  13. Thanks Jim. If what you are saying, that ALL of the things I mentioned are coming, is true, you have made my day, no my decade. Let me tell you, having you on these boards has got to be the best decision they have ever made. I truly appreciate your answers. Although, animating geometry would be awesome, I completely understand that it is not a priority and I am not expecting that soon. Yes, at this point, I am just looking for the creation and editing of animations to get a complete UI and methodology overhaul. I completely understand your position of "how can I get them to fix something without a file". Like I said, I've had this problems for years on ALL my files. I've just found work arounds to get things done. With 2014 its just become unbearable. I believe this is more common than you think, its just most people, such as myself, do not have the time to go on unmonitored forums to help fix software that they paid for (this is my first time). The only reason I am doing so now, is because you are here and I get the feeling that there is a remote chance that someone will actually listen. If I believe my input will actually improve things, I am willing to put in some of my time for the vectorworks community. My problem sending files has to do with legal issues. What happens to my designs? I have spent years creating my own detailed symbols and textures. Who gets access to this stuff? Will I find the symbols I created for sale on the Vectorworks store? I know that is far fetched but I have no legal agreement stopping you or whom ever else from doing just that. I could be wrong though, Do you guys have some sort of agreement that would protect my work?
  14. Jim, I appreciate you wanting to help me out, but I am very apprehensive about sending my files out for various reasons. Like I mentioned, I am a seasoned veteran when it comes to Vectorworks and have constantly had to learn various work arounds to get by, so I kinda already know what my problem is. Every year as computers get more and more powerful, I slightly increase the detail and complexity of my models. Vectorworks is just not keeping up with the times. This software should have been 64bit at least 5 years ago. My work and my expectations have exceeded the capabilities of this software, which just shouldn?t be the case. I am very proficient at creating the least amount of geometry as possible and creating the smallest textures to get my desired result. Telling me to further simplify the complexity or reducing the number of lights, etc? is not an option I am willing to hear. This is the detail I require, This is the detail I want!, and I know other software can handle it. This Out of Memory error is not new. Sure if you are doing basic 2d plans or some basic 3d work you will rarely see it, but if you want to do anything serious and use the advanced features, the limits of the software get reached very quickly. This year, I wanted to start incorporating some basic animation using vectorworks archaic animation tools but I can?t even get into the dialog boxes without getting an out of memory error, that is unless I?m using wireframe. I am not sure who makes the decisions around there and maybe I am just not there target market anymore. It just appears that they want to be everything to everybody but they end up doing nothing well. I mean this in the most extreme way, I feel like I am using software from the 90?s as basic stuff is missing. 64 Bit - Accessing less than 2GB of ram on machines that have 256GB Texture Mapping - Not being able to have independent x/y scale (stretching) Really???? Any of the tools like railings, doors, windows, cabinets - I don?t use any of them. Who in this day and age would use blocks and cylinders to represent their railings in 3D. These tools should be more dynamic to accept user profiles or symbols. For e.g.. for the railing tool, you should be able to enter profiles for both the top rail and bottom shoe and select a user made symbol for the spindles. Animation tools - Do I need to even say anything Baseboard or moulding tools - MIA I can go on and on but I think you see my point and I think I am just getting overly frustrated. If whom ever is in charge over there does not think this a big problem or that they can continue taking their time correcting this, they are sadly mistaken. This software is quickly becoming unusable.
  15. I've been using vectorworks for decades and 2014 has got to be the worst stable release I've ever used. I use to get the out of memory error a couple of times a day but now its at least 50 times a day without exaggeration. My patience is really starting to run out. I spend more time quiting and restarting then I do working. Jim as you mentioned, I know its not my machine, I have an older 12 core MacPro with a ton of ram. I get the out of memory error when I'm rendering viewports on a sheet using custom renderwork settings. If I do any work what so ever and then try rendering, it wastes my time pretending its rendering, only to have the rendering to show up all black. If I try saving after that, I get the out of memory error, if I try to update the viewport again, vectorworks just crashes. The only way I can get anything to render, is to quit, and then do the render right after a fresh restart. Its just ridiculous to expect us pros to have this kind of workflow. There better be a fix for this ASAP or I am done with VW. I can not continue to work this way if you are telling me that I have to wait for 2015 to get this corrected.
  16. Thanks Monadnoc, I'm with you... If they could integrate C4D into vectorworks and make it one program, I would be in heaven. It would also be nice to have some decent animation tools and not something from the 80's I get my plants and trees from Xfrog. I use the 3DS import option to get them into vectorworks but the problem is that they are very detailed with high polygon counts. Not great if you want to use a lot of them in one scene. So I purchase the plants in their native file format .xfr. and load them into their standalone editor and try my best at reducing the complexity as much as I can. The standalone editor is windows only so that alone is a pain in the butt for us mac guys but I see you use windows so it shouldn't be a problem for you. The other thing is that you need to be like a botanist to use this software. I have no clue with what I'm doing. I just keep adjusting settings and see if the polygon count goes down and making sure the plant still looks like a plant. If you don't have the patience to be a trial and error person, Xfrog is not the way to go but if you want amazing plant files its worth the extra work.
  17. You are absolutely correct in stating that you can get better results from a dedicated rendering package over renderworks but a you mentioned this comes with a cost. As I mentioned, what I am displaying are some examples that were done in a production environment with a quick turn around time. If I were doing this as some kind of art piece, or if I had unlimited time, I would easily be able to get better results even from renderworks, but as you mentioned, a dedicated rendering package can do better regardless. The better results are not just magic though, they require time and work. Your texture creations are much more complex with multiple maps and settings, your lighting will require tweaking and as you mentioned the porting back and forth is a big time waster and increases the possibility of translation problems. I've had experience doing it both ways and I by far prefer the integrated approach. I guess it all comes down to the time you want to put into it versus how much quality you want to get out of it. To me, based on the deadlines I have, what I get out of renderworks is acceptable enough. Spending extra time on porting and tweaking for diminishing gains means less time on the actual design work. In saying that, each person is in a different situation. If you have the extra time and/or feel that its important to eek out every ounce of realism, you can't go wrong with using dedicated rendering package.
  18. Thanks guys. I'll give it a try. I want to give some background to what I am showing. 99% of the model is made entirely within vectorworks with the exception of any plants, and some of the furniture. The renderings are done using Renderworks and they are the raw output, meaning that they were not doctored (photoshopped) in any way after they were rendered. My job consists of going from scratch to having the house completely designed with floor layouts, An exterior rendering, 3D isometrics renderings of each floor, and a few interior images like below with-in 3 working days. In other words my workflow is based on speed and I must sacrifice quality to achieve this. I must also limit my rendering times to a Max of 1 hr to fit everything in that timeline. If I was able to spend more time tweaking a scene, lighting and with higher rendering settings I would be able to achieve much better results.
  19. Very nice work.... I'm impressed that you modelled the grass in VW especially with VW2011. You also did a great job with the lighting. How did you embed that image on this site? I can't find any tools to do it and I would love to share some of my work.
  20. Thanks Monadnoc. Everything you said is correct and you reminded me of major point that I missed. I was coming more from a general perspective as I would have to see what they are exactly doing to give specific instructions to make there scenes look more real. I come from a background of designing custom homes so I assumed most people have at least one window, but you are correct, if yo have no openings what so ever to the outside, HDRI Lighting will have no effect. If you do have a cutout or window though, I stand by my suggestion that HDRI lighting is a must. For me, I just could not get the outside environmental lighting to bounce inside the room in a realistic fashion and that was what drove me crazy. I found the lighting to be very harsh or very dark and everything I tried had very little impact, even with HDRI Lighting on. This is where, I missed a very important instruction and something that should be fixed in the software. Like you mentioned, tweaking of the light dome is necessary to yield good results. To do this follow my next step: #6 After doing my previous 5 steps you will notice that the HDRI Lighting dome you picked will show up in the resource browser under Render Backgrounds. To tweak the dome, move your mouse over it, use your right mouse button and hit edit. A dialog opens where you can select the button named "Options". Here, there is a place to enter a Brightness Value along with a slider bar. Because it is labeled in % and because if you use the slider the maximum value you can get is 100%, I assumed that this was the Max value. That is not a true and it caused me endless grief until I finally realized that you can enter higher values. Sometimes I set this number to 1000% or higher to get the results I want. (higher numbers also increase rendering times) This is of course assuming that you set up your scene correctly including at least one directional light. Again, this is not a be all end all guide to rendering. Like I said, I was able to achieve realism using only renderworks, so all I wanted to do is offer some settings that people can experiment with to improve realism in a thread titled bad rendering.
  21. Hello Ben, I've been using Vectorworks for over 20 years. In the beginning when there was no Renderworks I use to export my models to Strata. The results were great, however, the process of exporting and importing was very time consuming. If you needed to make a change or you noticed a mistake in your vector works file, you essentially had to start all over again. Then after many years, Renderworks came out. I thought it was great because I could apply my textures to my symbols one time and I can reuse them in every model with out ever applying a texture to them again. So I went from applying textures every time I changed something to no longer having to apply textures to any symbols. HUGE time saver. The only problem, like you, I found the rendering quality to be cartoonish and poor. I was getting fed up and once again looking for alternatives but I really didn't want to give up the integration. I decided to give it one more chance and devote a ton of time playing with each renderworks setting to see if I can get results that I can live with. Let me tell you, it was time well spent. I am now able to get super realistic output and wouldn't trade the integration for anything. I would show you some of my work but I don't know how to post pictures. There are many aspects to a good render so its hard to just say do this and ta dah, you will be amazed. I will however offer some general tips to help make things look better. #1 - Use the custom render works option (you can also tweak some of the others) #2 - If you are rendering directly in the main working window select the Menu View/Rendering/Custom Renderworks Options. If you are in a viewport, make sure custom renderworks is selected as your background render and hit background settings. #3 - Once the dialog opens up to adjust the renderer settings hit the button that says Lighting options. There are two essential settings that you must adjust in here to get realistic renderings. The down side to these is that your rendering time will jump up dramatically. #4 - Most important is that you have something for HDRI Environment Lighting. So hit "From Selected Background" After that a drop down menu will become available. Each one of these defaults do something different so you may want to experiment depending on your application. For a general use though, I would say go with HDRI White or HDRI Curvy Dome. #5 - The next thing, especially for indoor scenes is to set your indirect lighting drop down to at least normal, 2 bounces. Other than that, the rest has to do with how well you make your textures, set up your lighting and position your cameras. These aspects are equally as important and finicky in any software you use. These things are learned through time and experience and I would have to write a novel to explain everything. Hopefully you can see some improvements from the tips I have given you... Good luck
  22. Thanks M5d. I tried to find the thread you mentioned doing a search "out of memory" but could not find anything. Its good to know the file actually saves. I have seen the temp file it creates but I have never trusted it. I don't want to hijack this thread but this is related to upgrading memory . Do you remember if that issue ended up being solved by getting more ram or is this strictly a bug. I notice it occurs after I do a complex rendering with many light sources so I assumed it really did run out of memory but then again the same image renders after a restart so I can't figure it out.
  23. Jim... First off I want to thank you for you answering questions on this board. Its very informative and greatly appreciated I currently use a Mid 2010 2.66 ghz 12 core MacPro with 12GB of ram and I was looking into one of the new MacPro's to speed up my renderings. I am probably going to pass this round because based on the benchmarks floating around I think the only config that will speed things up for me is the 12 core model and I feel that model is poorly priced for a renderworks station. I was hoping that renderworks would or will in the near future take advantage of OpenCL and the GPU's. Do you know anything about this? my hope is that an 8 Core with a couple of D700GPU's will soundly beat my current set up for rendering. My other question was sparked by your comments about ram usage. I constantly get out of ram errors (twice a day) which then prevents me from saving the file. Vectorworks still works but its pointless if I can't save my work. I have to quit and restart vectorworks to solve the problem only to get it a few hours later. Really annoying but I chalked it up to my files being to complex. I have had this happen for at least a few years now. I was thinking of adding another 16Gb to the 12Gb I already have in the hopes of solving this issue, but then I seen your comment. Is there a limit on how much Ram Vectorworks or Renderworks can use? Do you think adding more ram will help me or is this a bug or limitation on the software? Thanks for your help.


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