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ajpen

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Posts posted by ajpen

  1. 16 hours ago, scottmoore said:

    Or you could check out my backline symbol library at edgelightrgb.com. 
     

    ok sorry, it’s a shameless plug, but you won’t have that particular issue. 

     

    Dude, you already got my money, and I have been using your awesome symbols for some time now!!! I think that I was using the VWX model because you didn't have that particular Ampeg symbol? Or maybe some other reason. Perhaps I need to throw you another $50 for the 2020 models??

     

    I'll help you shamelessly plug your library... I just switched a bunch of VWX guitars for your symbols to reduce the polygon count for pre-vis... 

     

    Keep up the good work!

    peace

    aj

     

     

  2. Luckily I have a console here and not a viz-key, because I can still output sACN on all my granted universes.

     

    I believe that when recording DMX, the MA3 connection is smoother and better than recording sACN. When I rendered out an animation with Absolute Camera moves using MA3 Connect, the camera was quite smooth. When this problem happened and I switched to sACN, the DMX recordings resulted in jerky camera movements.

     

    The model is now more complicated, so perhaps that has something to do with it. That Absolute camera is wonderful, but it is frustrating to see it work smoothly one day and jerky the next.

     

    However, I don't have time for these experiments any more.

     

    My solution has been to go back to MA2 for lighting programming and MA3D (2 version) for pre-vis. It just works better.

     

    I'm sorry, but I'm done debugging Vision for now. I'll be using other tools to get my programming done. 

     

    I really appreciate your efforts and detailed responses, but when an upgrade breaks a working feature and it gets released, it's really frustrating. Some will say "don't upgrade while working on a project" but I HAD to upgrade to get the MVR texture import to work after identifying that problem.

     

    Covid time was great for learning new software and experimenting, but now that real work has returned, I find myself fighting the newest software more than using it.

     

    Very disappointed that all of this work has not resulted in a more usable product. Seems we are still playing catch-up with Vision and every time there's a problem fixed, new problems are created. 

     

    I hope that the "higher ups" that seem to be holding this product back, promising features that don't work and generally dragging feet on Vision hear that this customer is NOT satisfied and will be switching to some other product before this year's Vision license expires. 

     

    I'll keep posting about Vectorworks issues, however... Not going to give up 25 years of sunk cost in that program. At least MVR gives me options.

     

    peace

    aj

     

  3.  

    @bbudzon@Hans-Olav@mjm@jeff prince

    On 6/11/2021 at 9:23 AM, bbudzon said:

    I'm making a push to get this fix submitted to Vectorworks 2021 SP4. This will allow Image and Image Mask Transparency Shaders to be exported to 3DS/MVR properly; and it will not "step on" the main color image.

     

    Looks like that fix made the cut!

     

    My crowd figures now look like this after MVR export with no further action required:

     

    image.thumb.png.85284074402b526d456723b78f06370e.png

     

    Thanks!!!!!!

    peace

    aj

     

    • Like 2
    • Love 2

  4. Hi Y'all... Pour yourself a coffee and tuck in; this is a long one!

     

    I'm having trouble mapping an NDI stream to various LED tiles placed on stage in set carts.


    The set looks like the following screenshot. All of the display surfaces are LED Screen plugin objects with dimensions and pixels set correctly in the OIP as indicated:


     image.thumb.png.f75b820a9c67a27719e80934436f5928.png

     

    The image on the LED screens is set in "Edit Array Image" where a custom texture is selected.


    Notice that the Scale is set to 50% to get the image to display correctly (the illusion is a stack of TVs with different images). The image used for the texture is only two TVs wide, so this makes sense as applied to the still image in VWX.

     

    image.thumb.png.68bc62678cee9850698aee3d36f659b0.png

     
    Changing this scale, however, has no effect on the eventual video mapping problem that we shall see in Vision. I tried exporting MVRs with all of the Scale adjustments in this menu set to 100% and had the same results that are illustrated below.


    I also wonder what the "Capture Source Name" and "Capture Source Number" are in the "Select Vision Video Source" dialog. These names do not correspond to the names that Vision ends up asking for, and you could put Fred or Ethel in the "Capture Source Name" field and you never see those names come up again throughout the process:

     

    image.thumb.png.59f2e799103fddcc3b5ff76132c734eb.png

     

    But let's not get distracted...
     
    OK, so now we move over to Vision, after exporting the LED tiles in their own MVR. The set carts that they travel in get exported as a separate MVR to keep things organized. These two MVRs plus my Amphitheatre MVR merge together in to this model:

     

    image.thumb.png.cb3fb2b010db14efb1f8252cb6fbd48b.png
     
    Let's begin by selecting our first LED array (in this case the 4 tile square array top center) and choosing Assign Video Input:

     

    image.thumb.png.75ff303d1aa8cff7ee62d00ede3c5ee6.png
     
    We assign the video input a name:

     

    image.thumb.png.523097ca9018a3192054a0d87654bd9f.png


    The video input is fed via NDI from a MacBook Pro running Resolume Arena. The NDI monitor on the Vision PC shows a smooth, steady video image in real time:

    We find the 1920x1080 NDI input that is being scaled by 1/3 to give us a raster of 640x360 for use in Vision. 

    image.thumb.png.363aedea95acdbc1b0bff3d841f11cd4.pngimage.thumb.png.970261cbb896ed003070b8dfa5b1d368.png


     
     

    So let's crop the NDI stream! I scaled my 1080 template down to 640X360 in Photoshop to determine the exact corners of every crop and wrote them down (analog, in a notebook with a pencil) because the cropping tool in Vision is rudimentary at best. You can't zoom in on it, there's no grid or snap guide... best to use the tools in Photoshop and write down the pixels.

     

     

    image.thumb.png.9a5979e00a799504d58d0941fb022e4f.png

     

    So we get our square crop for our square video surface:

     

    image.thumb.png.128f4ee073d5125192a9c0002a990a1e.png

     

    And we do it for each of the LED screens in the model:

     

    image.thumb.png.8ab1f35fa4b3c27292fa50d10ba0521b.png

     

    During this process, plan to spend a lot of time looking at this screen, waiting for Vision to "see" the NDI input that it "saw" just perfectly moments ago:

     

    image.thumb.png.81787195368ef45e4fa05cab30404086.png

     

    Eventually we have created 13 separate crops of the NDI raster and mapped them to our LED screens. And here is the confusing result:

     

    image.thumb.png.1c778a04cb453bb02bbe87e732f1f04b.png

     

    Note the different scaling of the crops! Nothing seems to work out right, except the SR High and SL High set carts!

     

    image.thumb.png.8d3de7e815797c2710b21120d80682f3.png

     

    The 2wide x 4high carts are the only ones that display the crop faithfully. The Ctr Top crop is perfectly square, mapped to a perfectly square screen. It ends up stretched vertically. Ditto the Ctr Bottom... that one is stretched vertically and doubled. The math certianly does not work for the downstage 3wide x 1high boxes.

     

    image.thumb.png.473ee617a4db3c74b861983a2ad4ec00.png

     

    Playing with the texture scaling and offset in Vision does not help... You can't fix an asymetrical scale as is occuring here.

     

    If we use Vectorworks to create an LED screen and send it to Vision, and Vision has the ability to crop an incoming NDI stream, why doesn't this just work?

     

    I did try sending the crops from Resolume as separate NDI streams but Vision could not see them as separate.

     

    Any help would be appreciated. Getting this model to work will greatly increase the chances that it will be useful to me before we get to rehearsals.

     

    Thanks

    peace

    aj

     

     


    peace
    aj

  5. @klinzey Thanks again for creating this post!

     

    I have been constantly referring to this post as I continue to refine the MVR workflow between Vectorworks and Vision. I believe that I may have found an error on the MVR export. Specifically I have been working with Image Props using some stock characters.

     

    It seems that the "main" image texture steals the "Transparency" image upon MVR export.

     

    All shaders set to "Image":

     

    image.thumb.png.9761b04023840f0962d4f65b10e2d9e6.png

     

    I still don't know why the preview looks transparent. Just to verify, here is the Image in the Color Shader:

     

    image.thumb.png.d818089704243f5d498d6fd1f171708d.png

     

    Reflectivity, Transparency and Bump:

     

    image.thumb.png.497a47b6b1f231ab72a1896a55944a06.pngimage.thumb.png.054203b4afaaf0ac0a5c9e57905f7fdf.png image.thumb.png.dbc3b02c4ea575e16057b22d04d69092.png 

     

    And here's the result in Vision:

    untitled-20210609171333.thumb.jpg.58a6eff096cc72cf95671de1aea45946.jpg

     

    Here's what the unzipped .MVR file looks like:

     

    image.thumb.png.3202161fba230d348b499c7ad1ffabc5.png

     

    As you can see, Greg Front.png (for example) is the same image as Greg FontMask.png

     

    If you go in to the textures/scene folder that is generated when you save the Vision scene and duplicate Greg FrontReflectivity and rename it to Greg Front.png, then relaunch and load that scene, you get happy results:

    AudProps-20210609173047.thumb.jpg.c553adeb78d0d0471a12ce23bba5261f.jpg

     

     

    So I think that this is a verifiable bug, and perhaps an easy fix? The workaround is quite tedious.

     

    It's also a bit tedious that Vision has to create a separate folder for textures. One of the things that I love about Vectorworks is the fact that it imports your images and saves them within the Vectorworks file so you don't have to manage your textures outside of the application. Perhaps there's a way to package this info in the .v3s file and give us a simple Resource Browser functionality within Vision?

     

    I hope someone's listening here. I put a lot of time in to figuring this out...

    peace

    aj

     

     

     

     

     

     

    AudProps-20210609172821.jpg

    • Like 2
  6. @bbudzon I was really going to throw this gaming laptop in the street until...

     

    Vision became unresponsive for so long that I force quit the app. On relaunch, I took the advice to "reset all defaults and run in Safe Mode"

     

    That helped considerably. Damn!

     

    I have seen this dialog before, but would plow through without going "Safe" just to keep my window layouts, etc.

     

    What exactly is "Safe Mode" then?

     

    Is it something I have to turn off, or is it just some misleading vernacular?

     

    As in... does the resetting of defaults then start you off "Safe" so you can go screw it up again by messing with texture and haze settings? Is there a way to accomplish this without forcing the app to quit to get the dialog on relaunch? I couldn't find such a function in the Vision app.

     

    Putting some settings back to the way I want them is a small price to pay... when this happens again I'll be sure to reset and safe mode the hell out of it.

     

    Regarding the different handling of VWX vs. Vision geometry... It has been a habit now for some time to convert what I can to either Mesh or Generic Solids for export. However, is this simply handled in the .MVR export process anyway? There don't seem to be any controls for polygon reduction on MVR export, but VWX Extrudes, for example, must be getting converted to end up in the MVR package for other applications to use?

     

    Thanks again

    peace

    aj

     

     

  7. I'm trying to understand why Vectorworks can save a very complicated file in seconds, and a Vision model built from the very same information can take several minutes to save?

     

    I know my Vision model is getting "complicated" but it's really not that huge. About 12 universes of fixtures, some moving trusses, etc.

     

    I'm very conscious of the polygon count vs. model responsiveness ratio, but the model performs quite well. When just saving the file, however, it means a coffee break. Seriously, it's taking 3-5 minutes to save the model.

     

    Any ideas??

     

    Thanks!

    peace

    aj

     

  8. @JustinVH Where would I go to reach out as you suggest? I have been told to post things here because you guys are always reading the forums.

     

    Interestingly enough, cutting and pasting the geometry right back where it was brought it back properly in the destination file in which I was trying to use the symbol, but the same workaround did not work in the source Ampeg file. Weird.

     

    Thanks for responding... perhaps I could send tech support a link to this thread so I don't have to type all that out again?🙂

     

    peace

    aj

     

  9. Here's a very interesting problem, which I can describe with screenshots.

     

    Some 3D geometry becomes invisible upon either using or editing certain symbols in the Vectorworks Library File Speakers Ampeg.vwx that comes in the standard Vectorworks Library.

     

    Here's a sample speaker symbol as it appears in the Resource Manager when you first browse or open this file:

     

    AmpegBeforeEdit.thumb.PNG.0c662dd4cdacabc39f1af15ad5d694ee.PNG

     

    If you either Edit 3d Component from the Resource Manager or add the symbol to a Design Layer, the geometry appears properly in Wireframe:

    AmpegWireframeEdit.thumb.PNG.300cd3b7ab17ad157ca4d18fb2d28071.PNG

     

    But when you switch to OpenGL mode, much of the 3D geometry is invisible!!

    AmpegOpenGLDuringEdit.thumb.PNG.6c5152bb817e6d39f9d2ef1f92e9bdd7.PNG

     

    If you hover over the Generic Solid that makes up the back part of this speaker, it is visible as a selection:

    AmpegHover.thumb.png.05d7f757f8ae12f2c9c3d4083c1145d2.png

     

    This happens with several of the symbols in the file. It also happens in other render modes besides OpenGL. Importing the symbol to a new file does not help. Copy/pasting the symbol in to a new file does not help.

     

    This happens in the unmodified version of the Vectorworks Library file, whether you open the file or just try to import the symbol in to a new file from the Resource Manager.

     

    I opened other similar Vectorworks Library files at random and could not find the same problem.

     

    A copy of this file is attached as it was downloaded from the Vectorworks Library, from which these screenshots were generated.

     

    Can anyone else confirm this problem or provide any insight as to what would make this happen?

     

    Thanks!

    peace

    aj

     

     

    Speakers Ampeg.vwx

  10. Here's a weird one... 

     

    Out of nowhere (which usually means I hit an errant shortcut key without knowing it, toggling some obscure option)...

     

    When changing to a standard 3D view like Front or Right Isometric, all of my geometry disappears... and one or both of the ruler bars go yellow!

     

    Nothing is deleted, but everything disappears. Selecting Top/Plan or Top brings it back, but using the Flyover tool makes everything disappear again.

     

    Exiting and restarting the program does not fix this.

     

    And of course, the problem comes and goes. I thought it had fixed itself for a moment, then it re-appeared. I was able to cycle through several views in 3D for a moment, then this started happening again.

     

    The ruler bar doesn't always go yellow, but sometimes the numbers just disappear.

     

    Any ideas as to how this happens?

     

    Screenshot of yellow ruler bar attached.

     

    Thanks for any help,

    peace

    aj

     

    image.thumb.png.dd412209e96672957d384e55c9fae2bc.png

  11. @Pat Stanford 

    11 hours ago, Pat Stanford said:

    It is not the changing the shortcuts that is the issue.

    I believe it is that sometimes when a workspace is brought forward some of the tools/commands don't get updated properly. This could be because the tool/command actually changed behind the scenes and the one in the "old" workspace is not the same as the one you should be using. In other cases it could just be an issue of "bit rot" that over time something in the workspace has gotten corrupted.

     

    The problem reappeared after re-loading the default Spotlight workspace and changing only those specific shortcuts to create  a new workspace. This was the only change that was made; other than that it is essentially the default Spotlight workspace. I had abandoned the old workspace that was a result of migration.

     

    Once the problem reappears, switching back to a default workspace does not fix it without a restart.

     

    The new workspace (with just the shortcuts changed) works... for a bit, then the problem reappears.

     

    This happens in a document with just one slightly rotated extrude for testing purposes, using the faces as working planes for this tool to select.

     

    The problem seems to occur when one of the shortcuts is used to change the view. Changing views with the drop-down menu is fine. Plane tool works fine if views are changed this way. Double-clicking the Plane tool reverts Working Plane to Layer Plane as advertised. Then if the view is changed using one of the shortcuts, the Working Plane gets stuck on the next selection and the tool stops working.

     

    Attached are the simple VWX file and the new workspace with just the keyboard shortcuts added. I was able to replicate this problem as described on a different computer using these two files. On the new computer, it took a few view changes via shortcut before the problem happened, but it still did. Again, this workspace is based of the latest Spotlight workspace with just those 9 keyboard shortcuts added.

     

    Ctrl-Shift-Alt UIOJKLM<> are the shortcuts for the views laid out like a numeric keypad.

     

    If anyone else can replicate this using these files then i'm not losing my grip... i hope that's the case!!

     

    peace

    aj

     

     

     

     

     

    just a cube.vwx PlaneToolProblem.vww

  12. @E|FA Once I had finished re-creating one aspect of my workspace, the problem came back!

     

    3 hours ago, E|FA said:

    I wouldn't trust the workspace migration because related crashes can waste more time & effort than rebuilding from scratch at each version upgrade.  

     

    Interesting you phrase it like that... my thoughts exactly after this experience. 

     

    The only changes I made to the default Spotlight workspace were keyboard shortcuts, specifically default views. I map Ctrl-Alt-Shift-UIOJKLM<> as if they were a numeric keyboard... have been doing that since I learned how to draw in 3D. I am almost always on a notebook without the extended keyboard so these movements have been natural for me for a long time.

     

    Interesting that changing shortcuts related to views triggers this problem with working planes. I wonder if the coders would be able to find an actual correlation beyond coincidence on that one?

     

    I'll go through those motions again and throw in a few more restarts in between steps, but the problem has resurfaced exactly as I described in the original post.

     

    Thanks again!

    peace

    aj

     

  13. @Andy Broomell 

    19 minutes ago, Andy Broomell said:

    Are you saying this happens every time you open VW, in any file, with any workspace?

     

    Every. Single. Time. Every. Single. File.

    @Pat Stanford 

    12 hours ago, Pat Stanford said:

    Are you using a custom workspace by any chance?  

     

    Yep. And your suggestion fixed the problem. Works fine now.

     

    12 hours ago, Pat Stanford said:

    Not promising anything, but I have seen similar issues solved by a workspace change before.

     

    Disappointing because my custom workspace has evolved over several years (decades indeed) and I was always impressed that the migration function has appeared to become more and more seamless with each new VWX version. I'll be spending the next few weeks re-discovering the keyboard shortcuts that I have added...

     

    I did try switching between workspaces and then back to my custom workspace to see if that might be the trick, however the problem reappeared.

     

    At least there is now a solution on this forum for others who might have created the same situation with their own custom workspaces!

     

    Thanks again, @Andy Broomell and @Pat Stanford !

    peace

    aj

     

     

  14. I'm re-posting this because there was no real response to this problem. Could somebody have a crack at this and see if you get the same result? It happens in any document.

     

    Every time I change the Working Plane using the Working Plane tool, it seems that I get stuck with the new working plane and can't change it back.

     

    I'm using Planar Surface mode to select a new working plane.

     

    image.thumb.png.b2805e084d1efa77452af5cc6fba5306.png

     

    From the manual:

    Double-click the Set Working Plane tool to set the working plane to the layer plane.

    Nope. Doesn't have any effect.

     

    In fact, trying to select another planar surface to establish a new Working Plane has no effect. It's like the tool is a one-shot deal that needs a restart to fix.

     

    I'm using Screen Plane or Working Plane mode in Plane Mode under Document Preferences.

     

    Double-clicking the "Active Layer Plane" from the Working Planes palette does not have any effect either. The only way i have found to restore the working plane to the active layer plane is to restart.

     

    SOMETIMES... the program allows me to change the working plane more than once. Then it just decides that the Set Working Plane > Planar Surface Mode will no longer have any effect. 

     

    This is driving me crazy. I have to restart the program to reset the planes every time that I want to work in a different plane.

     

     

     

  15. Often when I edit a texture the preview thumbnail turns in to a black and white gradient, like this:

    image.thumb.png.dd609b4198a462760d2d5ec8ca0dfcfb.png

     

    In this case, it happened when i duplicated Brown-Dark to make Brown-Medium. The colours render fine in the model but not in the resource browser. The textures are basic color shaders with no reflectivity, transparency or bump indicated.

     

    The texture itself still works, but the preview does not. Restarting has no effect. Couldn't find any posts about this on these here forums...

     

    Help?

     

    Thanks

    peace

    aj

     

  16. @jcogdell Thank you very much for this insight (and your screenshot looks great!)

     

    I will be the first to admit that I missed something, and it happens to be the Preview tools. I honestly thought that they had been added to my workspace correctly, but I'm embarrassed to say that I actually missed them completely, and have been trying to get the old tools to work, thinking that they were the new tools! Reading through your post a couple of times finally made it click.

     

    That feeling of ignorance after posting, then realizing the answers were there all the time is probably why I'm a Greenhorn after over 20 years of using VWX because I have stubbornly not been posting. Well, if you don't ask, you don't know.

     

    Once I get a chance to wrestle with the new features I will hopefully be back here to answer my own questions for the benefit of others!

     

    Thanks again.

    peace

    aj

     

  17. The labels are still there in VWX2021, however it seems that the "extra" length only shows up on Multi cables and Data cables. So far my Jumper cables all indicate just their standard length. At least the Power plot will be less cluttered!

     

    Right now I'm choosing to deal with the clutter, as the fixtures will be cabled up in a catwalk so the tech will be able to refer to the plot when gathering cables to haul up in to the grid.

     

    It would be helpful to be able to indicate a definite break along any cable; I have seen this comment elsewhere regarding this topic. This would be useful for a break at the end of a truss or at a doorway that needs to be closed at night on a corporate show...

     

    I have also found that when copying a jumper cable and editing the polyline, the displayed length can become the actual length of the cable rather than the length of the standard part. When creating new cables the standard lengths seem to always be adhered to.

     

    One day, it will all make sense. I think that the software engineers should be brought to gigs on a regular basis (COVID notwithstanding) to see how this all fits together, especially when it comes to this kind of tool. I would volunteer comps to any show I'm doing and an offer of a backstage tour! I know we have plenty of theatrical professionals working at VWX informing the developers, however I'd love to show them first hand how their tools are used and I'm sure they would enjoy the experience.

     

  18. On 11/7/2017 at 6:52 PM, RedBassett said:

    I've poked around those display options a bunch already, but unfortunately the extra length label is part of the length display, which I do want. Thanks though!

     

    On 11/13/2020 at 9:59 PM, cessna310 said:

    Still not addressed in VW2021. Sigh.

     

    I'll add to this chorus... the "extra" display just clutters up the drawing. There might be an instance in which this feature is desirable, but it should not be the default. 

     

    With all the other options for turning on and off various display elements, one might conclude that this is not so hard to fix. VWX please listen to us and do so!

     

    peace

    aj

     

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