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DX11 nurbs vs subdivision surfaces

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To all the modellers out there, what would you pick out of bezier patches and subdivision surfaces for modelling?

Cause im just about to write a dx11 modeller, and I cant decide. Bezier patches are more natively supported in d3d11, you need a few tricks to implement subdivision surfaces but they are also possible.

So which way should I go, and why?

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I vote for subdivision surfaces. I use face extrusion intensively while modelling, so i suppose subdivision fits my style.

It´s just a matter of taste, but i think most people would prefer subdivision to patches.

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I see what you mean, because maybe the topology is more free form when your modelling with subdivision surfaces.

I remember a time when subdivision surfaces were considered inferior to patch modelling, like modellers who patch modelled were higher in eschelon to lowly poly modellers... I dont really see why myself now. Maybe its bullshit.

Some people think you get more "control" with patches...

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SDS are far easier to use particularly for things like characters that said you cannot match the quality of bezier patches for hard surface modelling such as cars etc..

Biggest problem though you will face with bezier patches are the good modelling tools are very expensive (10's of thousands a seat)....

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Quote:
Original post by kabab(10's of thousands a seat)....


Bit of an exaggeration there...

Quote:
To all the modellers out there, what would you pick out of bezier patches and subdivision surfaces for modelling?


Bezier patches are great for programmers, however I've yet to meet a modeller who thinks they are good for modelling.

SubDivs are much more intuitive for modellers, but can suffer performance problems for dynamic meshes (eg skinned meshes). If you can fit the subdivision into a geometry shader, they might not be too bad.

PN-Triangles may also be worth considering...

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Quote:
Original post by RobTheBloke
Quote:
Original post by kabab(10's of thousands a seat)....


Bit of an exaggeration there...

There are only 2 programs I know of which let you model true bezier patches AliasStudio and IcemSurf both very expensive!

Quote:
Original post by RobTheBlokeBezier patches are great for programmers, however I've yet to meet a modeller who thinks they are good for modelling.

SubDivs are much more intuitive for modellers, but can suffer performance problems for dynamic meshes (eg skinned meshes). If you can fit the subdivision into a geometry shader, they might not be too bad.

PN-Triangles may also be worth considering...
Every single car on the road you see today are modelled using bezier patches, there is no other way to model surfaces of that accuracy....

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Original post by RobTheBloke
SubDivs are much more intuitive for modellers, but can suffer performance problems for dynamic meshes (eg skinned meshes). If you can fit the subdivision into a geometry shader, they might not be too bad.


Yeh totally true isnt it, that if you animated bezier patches without the subdivision at all it would go faster, less math functions = faster code.

As im studying this area closer, im realizing I probably need to understand both to really do curved surface modelling properly, Since real time subdivision is more like half crossed with nurbs modelling anyway.

I dunno, bezier patches seems more "pure" a method to get together than subdivision, but almost everyone here told me "no, better stick with subdivision, its easier to model" or something.

So, just talking to myself - i think ill do a little bezier patch work alone first, see what i come up with, then most probably ill stick with subdivs for the real thing, unless what the hell - i just include both? :) im confused...

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Quote:
Original post by kabab
Quote:
Original post by RobTheBloke
Quote:
Original post by kabab(10's of thousands a seat)....


Bit of an exaggeration there...

There are only 2 programs I know of which let you model true bezier patches AliasStudio and IcemSurf both very expensive!


Maya. Max. Xsi. Motionbuilder. Blender. That's a price range of between £4000 and £0.

Quote:
Quote:
Original post by RobTheBlokeBezier patches are great for programmers, however I've yet to meet a modeller who thinks they are good for modelling.

SubDivs are much more intuitive for modellers, but can suffer performance problems for dynamic meshes (eg skinned meshes). If you can fit the subdivision into a geometry shader, they might not be too bad.

PN-Triangles may also be worth considering...
Every single car on the road you see today are modelled using bezier patches, there is no other way to model surfaces of that accuracy....


ANY implicit surface provides sufficient mathematical accuracy. For example CSG is still one of the most common methods used in the design of car components. As for beziers, yes they offer accuracy, but have other significant drawbacks (like the lack of continuity at the control points, the difficulty in constructing periodic surfaces etc). NURBS (which can fully represent a bezier curve, and trivially maintain continuity if needed) are the car designers choice these day (and have been for decades). Apart from a few vintage 1960's -> 1970's cars, I'd be willing to bet that no car on the road today has been modelled with bezier patches....

Quote:
Yeh totally true isnt it, that if you animated bezier patches without the subdivision at all it would go faster, less math functions = faster code.

Err no. Subdivision surfaces != Bezier subdivison. With Bezier/NURBS subdivision you can perform extremely aggressive caching to achieve some pretty staggering performance optimisations when you need to re-compute the surface. You should be able to achieve fairly high tessellation levels for dynamic surfaces with relative ease.

With subdivs, those sorts of simple optimisations don't really exist. This means you typically have to do significantly more work to update a dynamic surface (even if the subdivision algorithm is on paper less complex).

The big problem with NURBS/beziers though is simply trying to model anything in them. I'm not sure if you've played around with any knot insertion tools, but they tend to make modelling a real PITA. Modifying the contents of a knot vector does not make for the most intuitive modelling tool. The similarity to poly modelling is what makes subdivs the preferred technique for the vast majority of modellers.... .

Quote:
As im studying this area closer, im realizing I probably need to understand both to really do curved surface modelling properly, Since real time subdivision is more like half crossed with nurbs modelling anyway.


The only similarity is that they generate some extra points at render time. In all other regards they are very different indeed....

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Quote:
Original post by RobTheBlokeMaya. Max. Xsi. Motionbuilder. Blender. That's a price range of between £4000 and £0.

I guess we have a difference in terminology, In modelling circles when people say bezier patch surfacing they are implying something that can create single span surfaces... Modellers that create mutli-span surfaces get refereed to as NURBS modelling...

For example all your typical DCC app's fall into the Nurbs surfacing category...

As for bezier patches only 2 packages really qualify AliasStudio and Icem surf both of which are really expensive...

Quote:
Original post by RobTheBlokeANY implicit surface provides sufficient mathematical accuracy. For example CSG is still one of the most common methods used in the design of car components. As for beziers, yes they offer accuracy, but have other significant drawbacks (like the lack of continuity at the control points, the difficulty in constructing periodic surfaces etc). NURBS (which can fully represent a bezier curve, and trivially maintain continuity if needed) are the car designers choice these day (and have been for decades). Apart from a few vintage 1960's -> 1970's cars, I'd be willing to bet that no car on the road today has been modelled with bezier patches....

In past life I used to work in the Automotive industry doing "A Class" surfacing... Multispan nurbs are not acceptable in automotive body styling because the spans cause imperfections in the surfaces... Final production surfaces are always bezier patches with G2 continuity...

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