Brazil Buddy

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Brazil Buddy is at it simplest - a preset manager. It is also a look-development and test rendering assistant. It will let you access almost all of the settings in Brazil that can cause a render to take longer and adjust those settings. These settings can be temporarily used in a test render - commited to the scene - or stored in one of six preset slots.

Additional Info: 

View an Interface Screenshot

You will need to download and unzip the file. Open max and from the maxscript menu - choose run and navigate to the unzipped script. After running - you can check the maxscript listener (pink and white fields in the lower left corner) and there should be a number and OK. Now if you open the Customize UI dialog - there should be a 'Napalm Tools' category in the categories dropdown. In that category should be the brazilBuddy entry which you can drag to it's own button or assign to a key as you please.

Once you've got it installed - open Brazil Buddy up and you should see the interface like the one on the left. The six large buttons at the top will contain your presets. Currently they don't have anything in them - you will need to set up your own presets and assign them to the buttons using the 'set' button below each preset button. When you go to set a preset - it'll ask you to type in a little description. This description will appear in the tooltip of the button next time Brazil Buddy is started (maxscript will not let you change tooltips on the fly - so it won't show up until you close and reopen the dialog).

These presets are stored in an .ini file on your harddrive. By default they save to the top level of the C drive. If you would like to change this - you will need to edit the script itself and change the 'bbINIloc' global variable to a different location.

Some of the new controls offered are the buttons to the right of the resolution spinners - the ability to override glossy and SSS samples and the 'R' - 'Settings to Scene' and 'Test Render' buttons at the bottom. Starting from the top - the MA checkbutton forces the image aspect ration to me maintained as you change the resolution spinners (like the Image Aspect lock button in the render dialog). The 'H' and 'Q' check buttons next to that allow for easy toggling of half and quarter resolution settings. This is mainly for the film folks - who can then set thier final output res in the render dialog and then use these buttons to render smaller tests.

The glossy and sss sample overrides allow you to override material settings. The glossy OR swaps the settings into the materials - while the SSS OR just diasbled the use-local-settings checkbox. With the current version - this only affects top-level materials. I havn't added the sub-material or nested material stuff yet - but look for that in later versions.

Down at the bottom - the 'R' button resets the Brazil Buddy settings to those that are in the render dialog. The 'Settings to Scene' button commits the Brazil Buddy settings to the entire scene - making material and light changes if those sections are active. The 'Test Render' button temporarily swaps the Brazil Buddy settings into the scene - renders with those settings - and then swaps the original settings back into the scene.

The dropdowns below these buttons controls bucketing order and render type while this 'R' button reverses bucketing order and the 'S' button activates select buckets mode.

Other then these settings - everything else works pretty much the same as it does otherwise - with Brazil Buddy acting as sort of a condensed render dialog.

Known Issues:
- The 'max quick render' method of setting off a render seems to randomly crash from time to time. I've added a safe-mode checkbutton to help offset this. The good thing is that this type of crash seems to always let you save your file - but depending on when the crash occurs - the file may be saved with the brazilBuddy settings. Hopefully this will be fixed by Autodesk in the future - but I'm not holding my breath.
- Currently - the material changes only affect top-level materials - so materials nested in Utility materials - multi-materials - toon pass-through - blends - etc will not get their settings swapped.
- The maxscript render() command which is used by the test render button doesn't seem to allow for the standard render progress dialog - but instead gives a little progress bar at the bottom. If anyone knows a workaround for this - please shoot me an email and let me know - as I havn't been able to find another way to do it myself.

Version History:
1.4 - Added a safe mode checkbutton - so a user can force BB to use the render() fn - rather then max quick render - in case it crashes alot. Also changed the way BB saves and loads presets to intself - so that a preset does not have to incorporate the entire BB interface - but can instead just be one section (such as image samples). This prevents scene-specific settings from being overwritten - when all you want to do is have a preset for low images samples.
1.3 - added the white point override button. Also added a bunch of tooltips to buttons to help out new users.
1.2 - Minor update to switch the standard render call from 'render()' to 'max quick render' which allows for the standard render progress dialog when rendering. The region - crop - and other render modes still require the render() function and so still use the weird progress bar at the bottom. Also put all the script comments inside the macroscript wrapper - so they don't disappear when the script is executed and Max makes it's own copy.
1.1 - Added dropdowns for bucketing order and render type as well as buttons to reverse bucketing order and activate select buckets mode.
1.0 - Initial functionality - public availibility.

Disclaimer: While I have done my best to get rid of any bugs or errors - this script - like any others found on this site - should be considered beta software and used at your own risk. So if this somehow breaks your entire network and eats all your scenes - don't blame me ;)

Version Requirement: 
7; 6
Other Software Required: 
<a href='' target=_top>Splutterfish Brazil Rendering System</a>
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