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davjones

Correcting overly reflective textures?

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There are a few SUPERB freeware aircraft (let's use the FFX/SGA 737-200 as an example) whose reflective textures appear to me to be a bit overdone as seen in FS2004. Everything I've read on this says that you need to tone down (lighten) the alpha channel to fix it. I've tried this, but it doesn't seem to have any effect. This suggests that I'm not saving the texture the way I need to, but yet I can see the lightend alpha when I reopen it. So I'm confused.Here's the process I've gone through:1) open the texture in DXTBMP2) send the Alpha to the editor3) drastically lighten the alpha with my paint program and save it (goes to some Windowstemp folder)4) back in DXTBMP, reload after edit5) Save the texture as an extended bitmapDo I need to first convert the texture to a .tga file or some other format to work? Or am I just climbing the wrong tree altogether?Many thanks to any who can offer help... ...Dave

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It sounds like you are doing things correctly. DXTBMP is very good at working with alpha channels and it sounds like you have the steps right.Keep in mind that some models have "dynamic shine" which is built into the mdl, in addition to reflections which are controlled by the alpha channel. So even if you clear the alpha, it won't eliminate the dynamic shine--which can often be a source of confusion.-John

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You're doing everything right, Dave. Just be sure you are saving as in an extended file format - typically 32-bit (high quality) or DXT3 (lower quality) - that protects the alpha level, when you resave. DXT1, for example, does not save the alpha.But I suspect you've done that. In that case, you may need to lighten further - try 238 for paint, 210 or less for bare metal - or it may be down to your particular video card. I have found that some freeware paints I have uploaded recently display very differently dependent on the card in use.And as John says, don't confuse reflection with dynamic shine/specular highlighting. Two different things. The latter is in the model file, nothing you can do about that (not easily, anyway).MarkMark "Dark Moment" BeaumontVP Fleet, DC-3 AirwaysTeam Member, MAAM-SIM[a href=http://www.swiremariners.com/cathayhk.html" target="_blank]http://www.paxship.com/maamlogo2.jpg[/a]


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Mark "Dark Moment" Beaumont

VP Fleet, DC-3 Airways

Team Member, MAAM-SIM

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Thank you for your help, Mark and John.I think John has hit on my problem -- I think I'm up against dynamic shine in the model itself. Yep, I see now that it can a source of confusion.I don't think using a higher color value will help because I loaded one tail texture and made the alpha completely white, and even that didn't help, and that's why I thought I was doing something wrong.At least now I can quit beating my head against the wall and also I've learned something. My video card is a GForce FX5200; maybe these textures will look better when I get (or make) a new PC!Thanks again! ...Dave

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Don't rush. From my experience, the newer the card, the higher the shine! If that makes sense ...MarkMark "Dark Moment" BeaumontVP Fleet, DC-3 AirwaysTeam Member, MAAM-SIM[a href=http://www.swiremariners.com/cathayhk.html" target="_blank]http://www.paxship.com/maamlogo2.jpg[/a]


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Mark "Dark Moment" Beaumont

VP Fleet, DC-3 Airways

Team Member, MAAM-SIM

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Have you tried replacing the envmap.bmp texture? A file by Edward S. Lewkowicz on the other site (not here) gives more of a realistic ground and sky reflection on planes with reflective textures. Looks great on the prop spinner of the B200!Cheers,N.

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No, I had not known about this new envmap.txt. But I went immediately to the "other site" and got it.I couldn't notice any real improvement in toning down reflections on aircraft, but to my eyes it makes reflections off of water look better, so this is still a good tip.Sure appreciate everyone's efforts to help. This is a fantastic group! ...Dave

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