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Severe texture quality loss when uploading to SL

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I have been meshing for a few months now and I generally use Substance Painter for my texturing. It works well, except I experience severe texture quality loss when uploading the textures to SL and I would appreciate any help. Some details below:

My textures are always png. I generally texture at a 4k resolution in Substance Painter, then export as 2k or 1k for Second Life. Through my experimenting I've found this works better than texturing at a lower resolution, or uploading in a lower resolution... Naturally. Also, in Substance Painter my diffuse is rendered from the 2d viewport (That's generally what is recommended for SP texturing).

Here is an axe I recently textured in Substance Painter:


And this is how it looked on SL:


I understand that all quality cannot be retained but this seems like a bit too lossy in my opinion, is there something I might be doing wrong? I've looked at the textures after exporting them, and I can confirm that it's specifically SL that ruins the quality. I use Firestorm. I do not have lossy texture compression enabled nor restrict maximum texture quality.

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It sounds to me like you are doing everything "correctly".  You didn't say if there was only one texture (eventually a 1024) for the whole axe.  You might try using more than one 1024 texture. I am NOT recommending that please understand but it is done. Some creators would use four texture on that object (insert sigh here).    


From your screenshot it doesn't look like you are running on mid-ultra or ultra with lots of options turned on and of course your Windlight isn't even close to what is shown in your render screenshot --- so there are two things that would make a difference. On the plus side that would mean that folks using the highest settings would see your creation more like it was meant to be (hopefully anyway).   


Maybe having someone you know take a screenshot using high ultra and a very clear neutral Windlight would give you a better comparison. . All that being said it is rare that we see the same quality and look in SL as we do in that render window LOL. Once in awhile it happens and I do a happy dance but not all that often. 


Good luck. 

Edited by Chic Aeon
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Thanks for the fast reply Chic. Yes, I only use one texture for whatever object I am meshing, it's a bit simplier for me personally that way. I haven't tried giving different faces their own textures as you suggested but I see why that might help. And you're right, I'm sort of running things on High but I don't think I've reduced any setting that would reduce the quality of the Diffuse. I still see plenty of things in the game with beautiful, crisp, HD textures, so I was led to believe that I must be doing something wrong somewhere.

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3 hours ago, blahinos said:

 I still see plenty of things in the game with beautiful, crisp, HD textures, so I was led to believe that I must be doing something wrong somewhere.

  LOL.  Well "wrong" is a relative term and an "eyes of the beholder" thing.   If you examine some objects using  Right Click > Object > Inspect you can see how textures are often abused in Second Life. This is one of the main reasons for "lag" (the others are heavy mesh and complex - possibly badly written -- scripts).    


This is the information for one smallish food item. It is one land impact. It has TEN TEXTURES.  A lot of the really gorgeous looking stuff in SL is very poorly made from a game asset point of view (what we need in SL).  If I was going to make a similar item of this size it would have one 1024 texture.  I know HOW to make this type of textured mesh object; I just refuse to do it :D.   And for the most part those gorgeous textures are baked before being applied, which is a different method as I understand it from Substance Painter.   I can typically spot Substance Painter type texturing. It has its own and often impressive look. 


  This is a stool with ONE 1024 texture (which some folks would want to downsize to a 512 at a quarter of the download cost :D).




So I am not advocating for you to change your methods, just to understand why you might not be able to get that render window look :D.  




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To me it looks like a specularity issue on the bladestuff.

In addition, you might want to tweak your substance outputs:

Albedo and Diffuse maps are not equivalents, Albedo maps are typically very muted and strictly represent the color of the surface, diffuse maps are much more vibrant.

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