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Alpha texture resolution ..?


Orwar
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   So I set off to make myself some alphas today, for articles of clothing that were made for mesh but pre-BOM and thus came with none (and who have no auto-hiders and don't play ball with the alpha slices - but that's irrelevant to the question!). I went for uploading the textures in a 128 x 128 resolution, as I figured they didn't need any higher than that, but it got me thinking - do alphas' textures affect performance the same way 'regular' textures do? My guess is 'yes', because surely the viewer must load the texture to know what to alpha and what not to, but it's just a guess.

   All I found was a mention of how the library's alpha is a 256 x 256 image, and that it was suggested that one should upload an 8 x 8 texture to replace it - which does reinforce my guess. But what resolution would be ideal for clothing? I expect it may vary a little, depending on how close to the edges you want to draw (or erase, rather).

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2 hours ago, Orwar said:

   So I set off to make myself some alphas today, for articles of clothing that were made for mesh but pre-BOM and thus came with none (and who have no auto-hiders and don't play ball with the alpha slices - but that's irrelevant to the question!). I went for uploading the textures in a 128 x 128 resolution, as I figured they didn't need any higher than that, but it got me thinking - do alphas' textures affect performance the same way 'regular' textures do? My guess is 'yes', because surely the viewer must load the texture to know what to alpha and what not to, but it's just a guess.

   All I found was a mention of how the library's alpha is a 256 x 256 image, and that it was suggested that one should upload an 8 x 8 texture to replace it - which does reinforce my guess. But what resolution would be ideal for clothing? I expect it may vary a little, depending on how close to the edges you want to draw (or erase, rather).

With BOM the only texture your viewer will draw will be the composited bake which is a fixed size so the resolution of the alpha shouldn't have any affect on performance. The alpha'd out portions will be built into the bake.

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47 minutes ago, Theresa Tennyson said:

With BOM the only texture your viewer will draw will be the composited bake which is a fixed size so the resolution of the alpha shouldn't have any affect on performance. The alpha'd out portions will be built into the bake.

   All right! Then the only 'reason' to downsize it is to compile it quicker when exporting it from Gimp! 

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6 hours ago, Orwar said:

   All right! Then the only 'reason' to downsize it is to compile it quicker when exporting it from Gimp! 

There can be a good reason for using a higher resolution. I have a mesh dress that came with an alpha with super jagged edges, a result of the low resolution of the alpha texture. It is so bad, that it renders this alpha unusable because it shows noticeable seams and even gaps around the edges of my dress. A higher resolution of the same alpha may not have completely solved this issue, but it would have made the defects less dramatic, possibly to a point that I would consider it still usable.

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