View Full Version : Maya--->Max questions
04-22-2007, 04:42 AM
I've just landed an art test, and all's well and good. Trouble is, I've got to learn how to use Max in double-quick time. I've spent a couple of hours just dicking around, finding out how to do most of the basics (extrude, weld, cut etc.)I've also cheated slightly by installing the Digital Raster "switcher" plugin trial so I can at least use Maya-style navigation for the time being. I'm going to use this thread for all my n00b Max questions. Hopefully it'll be useful to anyone else in a similar situation.
My first noob question is how to disable *permanently* the goddamn selection brackets that appear around everything. I've found the option to turn them off, but even saving the UI scheme doesn't seem to stop them returning when I open a new scene or restart Max. Thanks for any/all help in advance /images/graemlins/laugh.gif
04-22-2007, 04:51 AM
Oh, got a much more important question too. When modeling, should I generally be using editable mesh, or editable poly? Poly seems closest to the behaviour I am used to when selecting etc., but I'd like to hear from some of the Max pros out there.
04-22-2007, 04:54 AM
Editable Poly FTW. I am not Max expert (Maya for modelling, like yourself, though I use CharStudio for rigging/animation and Max for exporting), but I think Editable Mesh is a relic and doesn't have any real use.
Editable Poly for sure.
Set up hotkeys for Connect, Collapse and edge ring/loop selection. I use C, X, R and F respectively since I have my hand on that side of the keyboard anyway.
For example, select an edge, I hit R then C and I have a new edge loop along the halfway point of the edge ring.
Similarly, select an edge, hit F then CTRL-C (default for Chamfer I think) and you'll have a nice sharp border.
Shift-click and drag an open edge to extrude it (works best with the Move tool active). Shift-dragging pretty much anything makes a copy of it.
1-5 are default hotkeys for subobject modes, 1 = vertex, 2 = edge, 3 = border (contiguous open edges), 4 = face, 5 = element (contiguous connected faces).
I have CTRL+ those numbers set to "convert selection to" so I can easily grab face selections in vertices etc.
Love the modifier stack. There's nothing like "history" in Maya so you won't have to worry about deleting it or anything. Modifiers are your friend, it's all about the nondestructive editing!
"J" is the default shortcut for toggling the selection brackets around objects, I hate them too.
If you want to create a default scene setup the way you like it, open max from a fresh start, set up all the viewports and viewing preferences (like edged faces displays, selection brackets, layouts etc.) then save the file as "maxstart.max" in the Scenes folder. It'll automatically initialise that every time you run Max from then on.
I'd try to avoid using plugins to simulate maya-style navigation - Max's isn't that dissimilar and you're probably better off learning it than falling back on a plugin.
Basically all of Max's navigation is based around middle-clicking:
Middle-click and hold to pan the viewport.
Hold ALT and middle-click to rotate.
CTRL+ALT and middle-click zooms smoothly.
Mouse scroll wheel zooms incrementally.
Hope that helps /images/graemlins/smile.gif
04-22-2007, 06:27 AM
Cheers guys. Mop, a mine of info as usual. I will eventually get round to just using the Max style navigation, but all the other programs I use regularly (Maya, Mudbox and Silo) all use Maya style nav by default.Once I'm familiar with the longhand way of doing things, I'll set up all my hotkeys. The above info, and poop's max settings tut should be a great help for that.
Next question. I've just UV mapped a pair of trousers, and have two separate UV regions. In maya if I wanted to select a UV shell, I could pick one UV and choose "select shell" from the marking menu to pick the whole region, up to the UV boundaries. I've been trying to find out how to duplicate this in max, without any luck. Selecting by element doesn't seem to take UV borders into account.Anyone know what I need to do?
04-22-2007, 06:27 AM
that's really helpful for me too mop :P didn't know about the maxstart thingie. small question: where do you set the grid units?
You should grab Chuggnut's UV tools plugin - http://chuggnut.com/scripts/unwraptools/unwraptools1.4.zip
You don't actually need this plugin to do what you want, but it does add a ton of useful stuff to the Unwrap UVW window.
Are you using the "Select by Element" checkbox on the modifier panel, or in the actual Edit UVWs window itself?
You should use the one in the Edit UVWs window, it does the same thing as Maya's Select Shell. The one in the modifier panel will select by geometry shell rather than UV shell.
I have Alt-S set as the hotkey to toggle the UV select element on and off, it's pretty useful.
04-22-2007, 06:53 AM
Cheers again Mop. That's the very thing /images/graemlins/laugh.gif I was using the one in the Unwrap UVW panel. Apologies for the stupidity of some of these questions, but I really don't have the time to spend ages hunting for these handy little things. The art test mentioned that speed was important, so I'm aiming to be done for Monday morning.
04-22-2007, 09:42 PM
Get your info from Mop, this guys knows his stuff, thanks moppy great post and highly informative, will try to mimic some of your neat tricks for loops.
Im originally from Maya and yes i would recommend not using a plugin too, because having Max opened and Maya at the same time is really a solid combo for modeling, you have a robust NURBS modeler and an amazing mesh editing software, im also in love with Max's UV editor, its really cool i never ever go in Max without Chuggnut's UV tools, try to spend a day to look at the shortcuts and print them in:
Customize --> Customize user interface ---> Write Keyboard Charts
look for Quicktools 1:
Also here's a collection of Max video tutes:
Hehe, you say you're in love with Max's UV editor... I actually prefer Maya's for most things :P
Max has no analogy to Map Edge Border, although its relax/pelt stuff is a bit better. Also the way it's actually integrated (as a modifier rather than another subobject mode of the main mesh) is really annoying, it's hard to transfer selections between mesh and UV, and it takes twice as long to actually do some stuff, since you have to keep adding/collapsing Unwrap UV modifiers.
Sure, it works fine, but it's just not integrated very well IMHO.
That quicktools thing looks quite handy, thanks for the link.
I'd also recommend using the Layers panel a lot if you're working with fairly complex scenes, it's a very fast way to select/hide/freeze objects.
I have two monitors and I always have the Layer Manager and Material Editor open on the 2nd monitor, and the Unwrap UV window is always large on the 2nd monitor too, very useful. Nowadays whenever I have to use one monitor it's really difficult to see what I'm doing since the UV editor obscures the viewports... I wish it was possible to put it inside one of the actual viewports rather than it always floating on top... ah well.
04-23-2007, 03:08 AM
yeah I agree about the integration, although I think you're being kind on mayas relax/pelt.. it seems to tangle more and sort itself out less. and sometimes the changes are so minute, I find myself playing track and field with the keyboard to get the relax shape I need. tried every combination of slider and option..
I found the best relax settings in Maya result in it taking AGES to actually relax correctly ... it was something like 10,000 iterations or something... produced a very nice and distortion-free shape, but took about a minute to do it. Maybe I was doing something wrong /images/graemlins/smile.gif
04-23-2007, 05:18 AM
Well, got the art test done and sent off. Thanks for all the help so far. The whole render to texture thing is very impressive, but really needs to be made a bit friendlier IMO. So many options are buried in seperate windows, and the whole thing is packed with jargon. The feedback from the little render window is great though, as you can see exactly where you're getting ray misses etc. Without Poop's invaluable Max tuts, I would have been lost in all the options for ages here though.
Maya's surface sampler/transfer maps/transfer surface info (whatever they're calling it this week)is more limited, but has a much better layout, and most options are labeled in plain English. It also does a great job around normal seams. I've rarely had a normal map seam show up if I made it in Maya (along with a decent UV layout, of course).
Definitely seeing some of the strengths of Max though. I'd like to become equally fluent in both apps eventually, so expect more noob questions soon /images/graemlins/wink.gif
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