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Tom Klaber

Twinmotion Plugin + Sync

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my 2 pennies worth, I have tried/tested the direct links between both Rhino & SketchUp, it's not exciting at all, in fact I go back to importing my models either as SKP or FBX files, it's a more friendly way of getting 3d models into TM and them being more workable. Hopefully in time the direct links methods will improve. Either way, TM has the potential to be a great fast real time render engine 👍 

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I've been a long-time user of Artlantis, and have recently tried (and bought, given the bargain price) Twinmotion, and now Enscape.

 

Artlantis is an export from VW (using a custom plug-in); it's a one-way process but pretty good as - if you set up your VW model right - everything simply  snaps into high quality in ATL and you've then got flexibility to add stuff (furniture/people/etc) and play with shaders to tweak material appearances etc. The downside is that rendering doesn't use your GPU so is slow, although navigating using the preview window is pretty quick. It comes with one or two useful tricks such as a site insertion tool for photomontages, and image quality of final renders is lovely.

 

Twinmotion's likewise an export job; maybe I never played with it quite enough but it never seemed to hit the sweet-spot of connectedness between VW classes and its own model structure. Again you can play with materials, add stuff, it responds to the seasons and weather (us architects regularly do renderings of our buildings in typical crap British weather, right?) and if you want movement and video it's brilliant - animated people, grazing cows in buildings, knock yourself out. But again very much separate from VW - in this case via a C4D export.

 

Enscape is very different; it adds a tool palette to VW and you can simply link the Enscape window to the VW window - navigate in VW (with a Spacemouse, for example) and your shiny high-quality Enscape view follows it. You can add stuff - furniture/people/etc) but you add them from the Enscape media store in VW, and you sort orientation and Heliodon in VW too. You then frame images and videos in the Enscape window. It's subscription-only (monthly/annually, and not horrendously expensive). The interface - unlike Twinmotion's monstrous screen takeover - is very clean as excepting that extra tool palette there's effectively no interface. You can't currently play around with material appearance in Enscape but that's on their forward plan for Q4 this year. I very much appreciate that they're very clear about VW support, unlike Twinmotion.

 

So - Twinmotion kind of blew it for me by not setting out a clear timeline for VW integration and use of the Spacemouse. I'm not sure why it is really, but ironically communication rarely seems to be the strong suit for visualisation products.

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I'm really on the fence about continuing with TM or not due to the changes in interior lighting in TM2020. I would like to stick with TM but if they have no intention of fixing interior lighting, it is a dead end for me. It is really frustrating, I still get much better results out of 2019, I've tried all kinds of things in 20 but with mostly unacceptable results and a lot of wasted time. This is a much bigger concern for me than a direct link with VW at this point.

 

I'm starting to learn C4D, which is what a couple of our other designers use. But regardless, I really need a new computer and pretty sure I'll go PC for the first time in 32 years. It may not be the best time to be asking for an expensive new computer but I am past due with our company policy and my Macbook Pro just doesn't cut it on these programs.

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I did some playing around with TM and Phasing scenes etc, my 1st attempt but looks promising, not used the latest 2020.2 release yet, need to have a play soon 👍, link below to example 

Phasing Scene Test TM 2020.1.2

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7 minutes ago, milezee said:

I did some playing around with TM and Phasing scenes etc, my 1st attempt but looks promising, not used the latest 2020.2 release yet, need to have a play soon 👍, link below to example 

Phasing Scene Test TM 2020.1.2

I'm curious how you have the lighting set-up. I think you have some spots pointing straight up at your circular light fixtures due to the shadows and round light spots. But how are you preventing the sunlight that falls where the walls meeting the ceiling and what are you using for overall lighting in the room? It looks like you do have a few windows but not enough to light the room (?)

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Posted (edited)

@chaz the lighting in TM is unusual, at the moment you have to set up 2 scenes, one which is in daylight, and one which is evening, and adjust lighting accordingly on different images you want to render out, you can then work from there, that's how I have been doing it anyways. The sliders on lights only go up to 10000, but you can manually type in say 100000. Also play with the exposure levels slider, still learning myself 👍. One thing TM needs to improve is definitely the interior lighting set ups 👍 

edit- try using some area lights in your scene too

Edited by milezee
added info
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, milezee said:

I did some playing around with TM and Phasing scenes etc, my 1st attempt but looks promising, not used the latest 2020.2 release yet, need to have a play soon 👍, link below to example 

Phasing Scene Test TM 2020.1.2

 

This is great!

 

For outdoor concerts/festivals/events... I can't wait to animate:

  • Day 1: Ground protection, starting at this corner, build this direction, then over that direction... 
  • Day 2: Site services, office trailer 1, office trailer 2... 
  • Day 3: Base out, stage deck... 
  • Day 4: Stage towers, roof... 
  • Day 5: Production... 

I imagine (with a lot of paths) we could even load in an audience to their socially distanced barricade corrals, cars for a drive-in show... 

 

Edited by Mark Aceto
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18 hours ago, milezee said:

my 2 pennies worth, I have tried/tested the direct links between both Rhino & SketchUp, it's not exciting at all, in fact I go back to importing my models either as SKP or FBX files, it's a more friendly way of getting 3d models into TM and them being more workable. Hopefully in time the direct links methods will improve. Either way, TM has the potential to be a great fast real time render engine 👍 

 

Giving VW the benefit of the doubt, I bet this is the holdup. I'll wager 3 tacos that they want users to have UI/UX (and stability) comparable to Enscape.

 

Meanwhile, they're chasing a moving target:

  1. 2018 Unreal buys TM
  2. 2019 Unreal releases slightly overhauled TM 2020 (some improvements, some setbacks)
  3. 2020 Unreal announces majorly overhauled UE5
  4. 2021 Unreal releases UE5

Fortunately, Apple isn't making any big changes—wait... 

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46 minutes ago, Mark Aceto said:

I imagine (with a lot of paths) we could even load in an audience to their socially distanced barricade corrals, cars for a drive-in show... 

😂😂😂😂😂 , Covid safe environment seating layout 👍

 

Mark, you should be able to do most of what you require when building up your sets/ehibitions in TM, especially now with this new 2020.2 release 👍

Honestly regarding the direct links I wouldn't even spend any time worrying about it, they have them for Rhino, SketchUP, Revit, Archicad etc, and from my own experience with SKetchUp & Rhino I don't like them. From VW export as C4D or FBX, assign all your materials (just colours if needed in VW) and import to TM with collapse by material, I also see users of the other softwares mentioned above who have issues with the direct links, they need work/development on them, so when the VW/TM direct link comes don't expect miracles, again my 2% of my brain cells worth  😜😂

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I think I may have to see if I can convince my boss to allow me to purchase a license.  This looks so cool and simple to use.

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On 8/11/2020 at 6:28 AM, JuanP said:

As we have shared in the past, we are actively working with Unreal Engine developing a Direct Link between Vectorworks and TM. And even though I don't have an exact date to share now, let me reassured you of the progress on this task. I will share more info with all of you as it becomes available.

 

The Epic versus Apple (and then Google) dispute has been in the mainstream media here in Australia. The dispute 'was' confined to the App store arrangements, but that was last week, now Architosh has added comment  . . .   architosh.com/2020/08/apples-threat-to-epic-will-hurt-mac-pros-in-aec 

 

This analysis is a little alarmist, right? Everything is going to be cool on the imminent Direct Link to TM . . . right? 

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In the short term, if the VWks documentation explained the export route more clearly (via Cinema4D) that would be extremely helpful.

Personally I had to look on Youtube and followed advice there to export as an .obj file - with very discouraging results as you can imagine. I also downloaded Oculus-recommended Unity before finding Unreal-based Twinmotion.

 

There is a complete lack of advice at the VWks end as to what the export options do, in terms of what they link to and how to organise your workflow.

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