Author Topic: Substance Painter Alternative  (Read 2897 times)

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Offline KristofDeHulsters

Substance Painter Alternative
« on: August 16, 2021, 01:29:56 pm »
Hi all,

I've been struggling finding an alternative to Adobe Substance Painter for adding weathering to my renders. I tried Armor Paint and Agama Materials but both are very clunky and are very basic compared to Substance. I am not doing enough weathered products professionally to justify the cost of the software. How would you guys go about solving this?

Offline RRIS

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Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #1 on: August 18, 2021, 12:43:05 am »
I usually keep the weathering to a minimum, but if I have to, I use combinations of occlusion/curvature and noise textures to mask off areas.

Offline mattjgerard

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2021, 06:50:33 am »
I'[ve been trying to learn substance, as I've figured its really hard to get realistic weathering in KS, even using the techniques RRIS mentioned. I don't do it on my products, but when putting my products in the field, it really helps with the realism. And now that Substance is part of adobe, I might be able to get the company to just tack on the monthly cost.


Offline Zeltronic

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2021, 07:52:53 am »
There are some products similar to substance painter but I am not sure that in terms of cost this is advantageous either (3d coat for instance), there are otherwise some free tools similar to substance sampler (https://boundingboxsoftware.com/materialize/) which can be useful to produce and get realistic weathering in KS, but we still far from substance painter accuracy...

Offline KristofDeHulsters

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #4 on: August 18, 2021, 01:25:34 pm »
Hi guys, thanks for the advice! I did some digging myself the last few days. I settled on Quixel Mixer! It is not as expansive as Substance but it is really good for a free to download software and combined with what comes in Keyshot is an excellent alternative to Substance (which, let's face it, is expensive).

Offline KristofDeHulsters

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #5 on: August 18, 2021, 01:40:36 pm »
This was done after a couple of hours experimenting with Quixel. It's not perfect but I'm sure it is mainly because of my skills with the software.

Offline Zeltronic

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #6 on: August 19, 2021, 01:15:16 am »
Well I think that you should try to use invert color node on your roughtness channel ... ;)

Offline KristofDeHulsters

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2021, 01:58:19 pm »
Well I think that you should try to use invert color node on your roughtness channel ... ;)

Good cathc, it's rough work though, if you look at the displacement, it is also far from perfect. The model is also too low poly for a finished version. I just needed to know if Quixel could do some of these things.

Offline DriesV

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Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #8 on: August 23, 2021, 01:13:39 am »
We are looking into implementing 3D painting and texturing in KeyShot.

What would you use texture painting for? Just for weathering effects?

Dries

Offline KristofDeHulsters

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #9 on: August 23, 2021, 07:26:23 am »
We are looking into implementing 3D painting and texturing in KeyShot.

What would you use texture painting for? Just for weathering effects?

Dries

Hi Dries, that's awesome! Weathering is one thing, I mainly feel that Keyshot gives me a handicap when it comes to creating custom maps. Having tools to alter different maps from the material graph would be an amazing feature! I would definitely make a post on this in the forum so others can give their opinion too as I'm sure it's a much wanted function!

Offline DriesV

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Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #10 on: August 24, 2021, 01:30:44 am »
...
Having tools to alter different maps from the material graph would be an amazing feature!
...

Hi Kristof,

So you would like painting tools to adjust already mapped textures?
What kind of adjustments do you have in mind? Or better yet, what use cases are you thinking about?

Dries

Offline KristofDeHulsters

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #11 on: August 24, 2021, 05:55:13 am »
...
Having tools to alter different maps from the material graph would be an amazing feature!
...

Hi Kristof,

So you would like painting tools to adjust already mapped textures?
What kind of adjustments do you have in mind? Or better yet, what use cases are you thinking about?

Dries

So yes, that would be pretty impressive. With Keyshot introducing UV-unwrapping a while ago, adding another layer on top of that where you can plug in the maps to the material graph and then alter them would allow for a workflow where you don't have to leave Keyshot. I'm thinking mainly black/white maps as you can use these then to layer different materials on top of each other resulting in more complex materials and localized features.

I'm thinking for example about vehicle design (which is shared a lot on this forum). If you have a simple texture paint tool that can do both straight lines as well as painting by hand, you can make interesting paint schemes for the car while adding weathering and dust/mud close to the wheel wells. Adding the labels on top of that and you have a pretty advanced tool to do texture painting with.

I hope that my info helps, I would be really excited to see texture painting in a future update!

Offline Jon-213

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #12 on: September 14, 2021, 09:23:04 am »
A little late, but I will add my 2 cents :)
I know this post is long and rambling, but I love KeyShot and the synergy that it has with Zbrush.

So, a little background.
Like I said, I mainly use KeyShot with Zbrush. And Substance Painter and Designer on the side.
In that line Substance Designer is my golden reference for a node system, I also use the nodes in KeyShot (a lot) and a little of Blender, Gaea and UE.

In my opinion, the strongest point for texturing in KeyShot, is the independence from the geometry.
If you are modifying your model in Zbrush or in a cad program and you send it to KS, your textures and materials are preserved.


So, having that in mind, I think that it will be more useful for users to have a better and expanded node system first instead of a new painting system (if we can have both, of course, that will be even better :))

The reasoning behind this:

-Traditional texture painting in KeyShot will (probably) require a finished model (with UVs or with frozen vertex order in the case of vertex painting) and that is a lot less useful than the current node system that can adapt to changing geometry.

-If the mesh has a certain level of complexity (or not so clean geo) you will have to make the uv unwrapping in another app. If the requirements for using the painting system in KeyShot are the same that you have in Painter or Mixer, and you are already out of KeyShot doing retopo, UVs, etc, probably you will stay out doing texture painting too...

-There are free good alternatives for texture painting, like Quixel Mixer. And if you really need Substance Painter, it's $20 a month...


Some things I think are needed to improve the node system (some are already mentioned in this thread) and the texturing in general:

-Adding the possibility to modify existing maps with:
  Blurs (Gausian, directional, etc).
  Symmetric repetitions (radial repetition for example).
  A node that allows non uniform transforms for the texture.
  Transformation node (like the current Mapping 2D node) that allows different mapping types in the texture maps node.
  Warps.
  Gradient maps.
  Etc.

-Adding the possibility to create more complex maps / textures:
  Splatter (to orderly or randomly distribute textures).
  Create individual shapes (squares, circles, polygons, etc) similar to the current Mesh node but just for one, non repeating, shape.
  More Noises with more variables.
  Text.
  Etc.

And some quality of life improvements:
-A 2D preview of the texture that is being created for easier visualization.
-A simplified 3D preview (specific for texturing) that is faster. Maybe inside the material graph? The Performance Mode is good, but texture nodes like occlusion or curvature are not represented, transparency it's hard to visualize, etc.
-Sliders with numbers that are more reasonable. Some sliders have 4 decimals (or more) in which the numbers make a difference...
-Being able to make a bump map from any input.
-Easier to visualize Levels and Curves. Color Adjust and Color to Number are hard to predict.
-Selections in the Material Graph are very hard to see. The selected nodes for moving are 0.2 shades of grey lighter for example :)
-Tools that help to order and view the graph. Things like align selected nodes horizontal / vertical, frames to put the nodes inside, different kinds of lines for the nodes connections, etc.
-More options for the seams in Tri-Planar.
-Instance nodes and materials.
-Move the “Paused” render banner from the middle of the preview window to the top or the bottom. We are often pausing to work in another program but we reference the real time preview of KeyShot a lot…. And it has a big, blue banner in the middle. :)

And lastly, a good option for texture painting in KeyShot, in my opinion, is Projection Painting.
I made this thread a while ago.
https://forum.keyshot.com/index.php?topic=27281.msg114263#msg114263
If we can have 2D projection painting in the viewport, that will allow us to change the geo and keep the painting and free us from UVing.

Well, that's it !
Sorry for the long post and thank you for reading to the end :)
Cheers !

Offline RRIS

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Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #13 on: September 15, 2021, 12:52:23 am »
A little late, but I will add my 2 cents :)
I know this post is long and rambling, but I love KeyShot and the synergy that it has with Zbrush.
...

Jon, you mention a better realtime/preview mode.. I would 100% like to +1 that. I've been experimenting with Unreal Engine and Blender Eevee for product animations and it's such a godsend that you can set up a couple camera pans, an exploded view, etc. and render it all out in a matter of minutes. We've done product animations in Keyshot before, but stopped doing it because we simply don't have the time to wait for hours/days to get something usable out the door. You can have an animation ready in the same time it takes to upload your project to a render farm.. (ok, slight exaggeration, but you get what I mean) .
Clients will happily accept that there might not be accurate global illumination or caustics, if I tell them to give me a few hours and I'll send an animation over to them or even showing them in realtime over Teams, that is worth SO much.

As an industrial designer I wouldn't use texture painting, as clients don't want to see dirty/worn concepts. There are already other good tools for that. I can imagine it would be useful to break up texture tiling or to draw quick masks for labels, but I would prefer Keyshot to focus on boosting productivity for the client base that made it great in the first place.

Offline mafrieger

Re: Substance Painter Alternative
« Reply #14 on: September 19, 2021, 11:54:05 pm »
@jon-213

maybe you should put a copy of your great summary to wishlist topic too...
https://forum.keyshot.com/index.php?board=8.0