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Andrew O'Grady avatar image
Andrew O'Grady asked ·

3ds Max element opacity not rendering in Arnold

arnold-issue.png3ds Max 2021 and Arnold 4.3.0.78 (2021) - I have some elements with a bitmap materials on them, some are multi-sub. I would like to simply render an animation so the elements disappear over time. Opacity works in the viewport, but not in Arnold. I have done a lot of research and have applied the Arnold Properties modifier and unchecked the "opaque" setting, but opacity is still not working and the element appears solid. The material is a physical material. Any ideas?

3ds maxopacity
arnold-issue.png (1.6 MiB)
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Mads Drøschler avatar image
Mads Drøschler answered ·

We took this to private channels, and I got the file and we got it working.

The case was about lack of transparency ray levels, so by raising that, the black stuff disapeared.

This is also a classic issue when working with glass and people start to see black spots, solved the same way by increasing the transmission ray stack depth to more than 10 default.

Do note that its not advised to set this to 200 and save as a default as it will slow things down potentially, only let through what is needed, else use defaults.

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Mads (above) directed me to go In the Render set up dialogue / Arnold Render tab/ Depth Limits/ Transparency Depth - I changed the setting from default of 10 to 42. This got rid of the black remnants.


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Andrew O'Grady avatar image
Andrew O'Grady answered ·

I am not permitted to upload the max file.

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Andrew O'Grady avatar image
Andrew O'Grady answered ·

After I started rendering, there were black fragments left behind after the opacity keys activated in the animation. I solved this by detaching the multsub objects into there individual elements. Thankfully when I detached the elements they all keep there original animation characteristics, which saved me re-animating them all. This solved the problem and the opacity rendered out clean. Obviously Arnold does not handle opacity very well and especially multisub objects! Wow what a saga. I used Arnold because I needed to render out a Point Cloud Scan and Corona renderer cannot do that. I tried switching to Corona render but it does not support multisub materials as a sub material.

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There are other ways to work with Material Ids than through multisub material.

In general I advise users to stay away from it and solve the stuff differently with same results.

In fact you only need 1 material to do it.

Your case will work if we were to restructure the way you create your shader noodle by attacking the core concept of how you approach it, and handle it stricly shade side.


I can program a single node that handles it all in OSL, but you can also just use array maps and use a couple and ping the material id getattribute.



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Andrew O'Grady avatar image Andrew O'Grady Mads Drøschler ·

Thanks Mads, I have no idea what you you are talking about but it sounds really impressive. Any assistance you can give me would be greatly appreciated. The render is still leaving black fragments even though I detached all the objects

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Mads Drøschler avatar image Mads Drøschler Andrew O'Grady ·

mail me at gkmotu@gmail.com
I have several to full extend NDA contracts signed with Autodesk that runs on a permanent basis, so you can share things through that channel instead of exposing your content here.
I could run you through a couple of concepts so you can learn how to ping the needed material ID and get a signal going on the channel and dial in the transparency.

Else lets continue here, up to you.

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snehal harshe avatar image
snehal harshe answered ·

no content, delete post.

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Andrew O'Grady avatar image
Andrew O'Grady answered ·

The only solution I could find was to make a Arnold Lambert Material. Turn the opacity colour to black so that it made a transparent material. Then click my multisub object and the Lambert material into a blend map. I then animated the blend mix. Such a complex workaround for such a simple action of making a map go transparent - I do not like Arnold! I use Corona Renderer where ever possible.blend.png


blend.png (170.7 KiB)
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Show the original shader graf so we can identify where you glitch in the original setup.
Since you work with multiple closures we might need to get a file to work on.
A simple plane where you reproduce it would be a start, else the original shader chain on a plane.

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Andrew O'Grady avatar image
Andrew O'Grady answered ·

Yes, but its not working either animated or not.

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Ciro Cardoso avatar image
Ciro Cardoso answered ·

Is the opacity parameter animated?

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