Max tip:Update background while playing

Update background while playing

Update background while playing allows you to use animated background images in the viewport. When on, an IFL file, AVI file, or MOV file updates on each frame when you click the Play button. It can be a bit slow, so you may want to turn of turn off the real-time switch on the Time Configuration dialog.

The dialog is a bit buried in 3dsmax. Look in:

Customise > Preferences > Viewports tab


Roundup of Plant Plugins and tools for 3dsMax

Much as I love 3dsMax making plants from scratch is time consuming. If they need to animate as well then it make sense to buy something off the self. Here’s a list of all 3dsMax friendly software I could find. (I’d love a review copy of some of this stuff … )
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Reduce Motion capture with the Crude Biped Key Reduction Tool

Motion capture is great but it almost never quite fits the location or the character rig. Often it requires a little tweaking or, worse still ,modifications are needed that take the data further and further from the source file ( Rifles are changed to pistols etc).

Animation layers are useful but only get you so far until your simply fighting the data trying to figure out when and where things are happening.

Eventually we have to dismantle that wall of motion captured key frames into something more manageable.
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Make more space by using smaller buttons in 3dsMax

UI Preferences
Screen real estate is important. By resizing the Max toolbar buttons you can squeeze 50% more on screen without adding another row.

  • Simply go into Customize > Preferences
  • Chose the General tab
  • Uncheck Use Large Toolbar buttons 


Large ToolBar Buttons


Small ToolBar Buttons

iRay mBlur and pFlow Test

iRay motion blur dialog
I’ve been doing some tests to create a monster made of particles for a short film. I’ve been very impressed be the speed of rendering Motion Blur in iRay. It’s smooth and high quality with very little performance overhead.

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