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Transparent hair


Elysse Snowfield
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I have an avi with strands of hair falling over eyes.  The eyes are supposed to be partially covered by the hair, but somehow show through as though the hair were completely transparent.  I tried editing these hair strands, but couldn't find anything to make them opaque against the eyes.  It sort of looks like holes were cut in the hair just for the eyes.  Is there anything I can try to fix this?

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If you can take a picture, that helps. I have had issues with transparent hair when I tried shadows. Is it really holes over the eyes, or is it long hair strands that look rough and partly invisible, like the example under? Both are unedited SL pictures, but the one at the left is with shadows turned on. Notice that the cigarette smoke also disappeared.

transp hair issue.jpg 

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What kind of avatar are you using this with?

I know that with my furry avatars, I had this problem a lot, because the prim head had alpha-textured parts in the prim eyes, so you could change color aspects of the eyes by tinting a layer behind a partially transparent iris. The only solution there was to re-make the whole head so it didn't need an alpha texture to display the eye color I wanted, or else to use prim hair that had no alpha texturing near the eyes.

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Tristizia Demonista wrote:

If you wear Primeyes, you're out of luck.
:(
This is just the way Prims are handeled by SL.

One way to try to fix this would be wearing some kind of different Eyes. 

Only if the texture on the prim eyes has an alpha, then you will be affected by the alpha clash bug (there is no fix).  There should be no reason, I can see, that a prim eyes texture should need to have alpha channels.  Usually that leads me to think that the creator doesn't really know what they are doing when processing textures for SL (happens all the time).  What sucks is that, when you have carefully chosen your eyes, changing them can seem rather drastic... but, in this case, I see no other way around it.

Btw, they have to be prim eyes in order for alpha clash to occur (system eyes won't do that).  From what has been described, there's nothing else that it could logically be.  Either the OP has to resolve herself to non-alpha hair (which would be ridiculous, if not impossible) or change her eyes.

...Dres

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Dresden Ceriano wrote:

Only if the texture on the prim eyes has an alpha, then you will be affected by the alpha clash bug (there is no fix).  There should be no reason, I can see, that a prim eyes texture should need to have alpha channels.  


If you want to script the prim eyes to have infinitely variable color options, you pretty much have to put a transparent layer with the white of the eye, iris detailing, and the hole in the iris on it over a solid layer that the script can change the color on. The colored layer shows through the detailed image of the rest of the eye.

Without that trick, prim eyes can't change color, or can only texture-swap between specific pre-determined non-alpha texture choices. Just tinting the prim won't do, in most cases. I did try once making prim "contact lenses", intended just to cover the iris and not the whites of the eye, and textured so the iris on the prim could be tinted. The result didn't look as good as the two-layer approach.

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Peony Sweetwater wrote:

Could it be the eyelashes causing the issues? Even the alpha channel in the system lashes can cause annoying issues with hair. You could try making the lashes shorter if that's the case.

The lashes wouldn't cause the eyes to pop out over her hair.  System alphas (meaning skin layers) don't clash with inworld alphas... worn prims that include alphas can, but not skin layers, of which system eyes are a part.

...Dres

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Ceera Murakami wrote:


Dresden Ceriano wrote:

Only if the texture on the prim eyes has an alpha, then you will be affected by the alpha clash bug (there is no fix).  There should be no reason, I can see, that a prim eyes texture should need to have alpha channels.  


If you want to script the prim eyes to have infinitely variable color options, you pretty much have to put a transparent layer with the white of the eye, iris detailing, and the hole in the iris on it over a solid layer that the script can change the color on. The colored layer shows through the detailed image of the rest of the eye.

Without that trick, prim eyes can't change color, or can only texture-swap between specific pre-determined non-alpha texture choices. Just tinting the prim won't do, in most cases. I did try once making prim "contact lenses", intended just to cover the iris and not the whites of the eye, and textured so the iris on the prim could be tinted. The result didn't look as good as the two-layer approach.

Thank you for the info... I never have worn prim eyes.  I just don't see the need to be able to change my eye color on a whim with a script, and therefore wouldn't even think of buying color change prim eyes.  Now I understand why someone would make prim eye textures that include an alpha... still, I think it's completely unnecessary, considering the problem with alpha clash.  Still, there has to be much better ways of dealing with the issue.

...Dres

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Thanks... it's a furry av, and there are very clear holes over the eyes, as though the eyes were in front of the hair.  It's really strange, though: The holes suddenly disappear and everything looks good when I'm facing certain angles, depending on lighting.  When I look at myself from a slightly different direction, the holes can reappear just as abruptly as they disappeared.

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That is the alpha glitch, yes. It is not possible to correct in SL. Same problem happens in buidings, when you have a plant with alpha in the texture, in front of a window with alpha. Correct me if anyone of you know a fix to it, I have heard it's not possible.

Pussycat is right about the color change eyes. I'm never a furry, but I have some cybernetic eyes that work this way. I assume that your avatar is copy and mod, so you can change eyes?  You could contact the creator, include the snapshots or point to this thread, and ask if he can provide you with a set of prim eyes without the alpha. The only downside with that, is that you have to change eyes manually instead of via a HUD, but that's surely worth it?

Since your friend also has this problem, it would be good for the designer to know. Maybe h/she only wears a mohawk, and don't think the alpha in the eyes would be a problem. The customers would be happy to get an add-on set of eyes in solid colors. 

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Yep. Same problem I had with several of my furry avatars. The only solution is to re-work the head so it doesn't need the alpha layer part. Then you can wear any hair style you choose, but the eyes will be a fixed color choice, and unchangable in the modded copy.

I can probably modify a copy of the head for you, if we can meet for a while in-world, you give me mod rights, and you rez a couple copies of the head on the ground for me to tinker with. Some of the tricks I had to use to do it for my head were complex enough that I don't think I could describe them adequately here, in terms a non-builder might be able to follow.

Alternatively, just choose hair styles that don't fall in front of your eyes. That's why my current avatar has a style with bangs. I switch between several avatar styles, and like to keep some things, like my eye color and hair style, consistent between them. It got to be too much trouble to mid each different one to avoid this glitch.

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also @ Dresden

..about this alpha glitch bug thingy. There is no longer such thing if you are on one of the 2 latest beta viewers (yes the offical). I was working on a project that supposed to get advantage of the glitch and after an update it was gone. And now latest beta release it still is gone. The viewer handles transparancy perfectly well. Unless of course if it turns out in next update the bug was just bugged. :smileyhappy:

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Six Igaly wrote:

also @ Dresden

..about this alpha glitch bug thingy. There is no longer such thing if you are on one of the 2 latest beta viewers (yes the offical). I was working on a project that supposed to get advantage of the glitch and after an update it was gone. And now latest beta release it still is gone. The viewer handles transparancy perfectly well. Unless of course if it turns out in next update the bug was just bugged. :smileyhappy:

If this is, indeed, the case, it's a major accomplishment.  I was under the impression that it would take so much processing power to calculate that it would be completely impractical to achieve.  Makes me what to check out the latest viewer so I can see it with my own two eyes.

...Dres

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Definitely NOT fixed in the upcoming viewers. I just tested this with the Development viewer. Second Life 3.2.1 (243418) Oct 19 2011 18:11:40 (Second Life Development).

I was able to reproduce the OP's problem exactly, using one of my older avatars. The prim hair with transparency completely becomes invisible anywhere that it overlaps with the prim sphere in my head that includes the eyes, and which also has an alpha layer.

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Over the past six years, they certainly have managed to make it better to some degree. But never to eliminate it entirely. For example I clearly recall a time when two alpha-textured walls, linked in a 90 degree corner, would always glitch against each other. Some time ago they did fix the rendering algorythm to make it less likely that two surfaces within the same linkset would glitch in that way. The one whose center is closer almost always is rendered first. It's still possible to glitch, just in fewer ways.

I don't have that particular beta version loaded, and I'd just as soon not load a third flavor of V3 on my system, but I would be fairly certain that if you took two unlinked prims, put alpha textures on each, and get them close to one another, you'll still see that glitch on occasion in every viewer version. Mac or PC shouldn't matter, as the alpha sorting glitch is an Open GL flaw, and not anything OS or video card driver specific,

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Are you so sure about the OS doesn't matter? SInce Lion is not yet supported by LL. So basicly i am using a viewer  that is not suitable for my system. I can't help it, the glitch is gone for some weeks now no matter how hard I try, I don't see it anymore. 

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Dresden Ceriano wrote:


Six Igaly wrote:

also @ Dresden

..about this alpha glitch bug thingy. There is no longer such thing if you are on one of the 2 latest beta viewers (yes the offical). I was working on a project that supposed to get advantage of the glitch and after an update it was gone. And now latest beta release it still is gone. The viewer handles transparancy perfectly well. Unless of course if it turns out in next update the bug was just bugged. :smileyhappy:

If this is, indeed, the case, it's a major accomplishment.  I was under the impression that it would take so much processing power to calculate that it would be completely impractical to achieve.  Makes me what to check out the latest viewer so I can see it with my own two eyes.

...Dres

Your impression was correct, the 'new' feature is something that was added in 2.2 for deferred rendering which will now be enabled all the time, and it's really just a smarter version of a dirty hack that's been in the viewer for many years. It minimizes the sorting problem but does not eliminate it.

We are still a few years away from having GPUs fast enough to use the perfect fix in sl, altho current high end cards are fast enough to use it in professionally made games that don't have a million alpha textures.

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