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widows 98

Volumetric clouds

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sooooo,

dear SMP developers, i really love SMP and i think that it is one of the best XP11 cloud engine, but, to know,

Are you going to introduce volumetric clouds (and i don't mean the number of puffs, but things like xE) maybe in SMP5?

it would be really nice! because SMP4 clouds are arleady almost 3d, but a volumetric cloud would be amazing!

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Right now we will be waiting for Laminar to figure out where they want to go in Vulkan or Metal API's. Weather plugins like SkyMaxx Pro and xEnviro will not work in it at this time.

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SMP actually has a volumetric cloud engine (the more precise term is GPU ray-casting) within it that we haven't exposed. Even today's GPU's struggle to make this technique perform well at large scale, and look good up close - and so we use particle-based volumetric rendering instead. You can make GPU ray-casting look good at a distance, or good up close over a small area, but not both. Competing products suffer from the same challenge. Our stance is that particle-based clouds both look and perform better given current technology.

Even if we were to support Vulkan, it wouldn't help volumetric rendering to be any faster. Vulkan frees up CPU resources, and rendering these types of clouds is bound by GPU performance. 

Edited by sundog

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On 1/21/2020 at 11:50 AM, sundog said:

SMP actually has a volumetric cloud engine (the more precise term is GPU ray-casting) within it that we haven't exposed. Even today's GPU's struggle to make this technique perform well at large scale, and look good up close - and so we use particle-based volumetric rendering instead. You can make GPU ray-casting look good at a distance, or good up close over a small area, but not both. Competing products suffer from the same challenge. Our stance is that particle-based clouds both look and perform better given current technology.

Even if we were to support Vulkan, it wouldn't help volumetric rendering to be any faster. Vulkan frees up CPU resources, and rendering these types of clouds is bound by GPU performance. 

As I read on xplane blog, with Vulkan uptate x plane will use also OpenGl for software that needs it, and , so, because you haven't released that volumetric clouds engine, at least, is there any way to get SMP more 3d? I arleady love  a lot how you draw clouds, they're very realistic, but 3d clouds would be incredible!

Can't wait for your next uptade! At least, fats and puff (?) I don't remember how wast called that textures option, are arleady really nice, and they aren't cartoonish as the stormy textures, but they still need some improvement

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I think maybe there are some misconceptions going on here - our clouds are not just 2D textures. They are 3D objects that use use a texture-based volumetric rendering technique, but they are still 3D objects. You can fly around and through them, which you wouldn't be able to do if they were just flat pictures.

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8 hours ago, widows 98 said:

As I read on xplane blog, with Vulkan uptate x plane will use also OpenGl for software that needs it, and , so, because you haven't released that volumetric clouds engine, at least, is there any way to get SMP more 3d? I arleady love  a lot how you draw clouds, they're very realistic, but 3d clouds would be incredible!

Can't wait for your next uptade! At least, fats and puff (?) I don't remember how wast called that textures option, are arleady really nice, and they aren't cartoonish as the stormy textures, but they still need some improvement

I guess you missed the part where they mention its because vulcan doesnt have a way to do 3d cloud rendering, this is what will break the cloud drawing, They plan on sorting that out as soon as vulcan is implemented though I suspect its already in progress.

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