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Old 03-03-2005, 02:59 PM   #16
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if u are editing a maya 6.5 to use a maya 6.0 u also need to edit the MR header, since maya 6.5 has a newer version of MR.
this is also easily done via a plugin on highend3d to let you use any file version of maya with any release. just an FYI.
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Old 04-03-2005, 12:39 AM   #17
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hey guys that was an EXCELLENT tip! thank you so much!!!

seems so simple that you'd expect anyone to know it but somebody like me would NOT have the faintest idea! i was having such a problem opening my maya 5 (work) files in 6 (home)

thank you thank you!

Lori
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Old 06-03-2005, 10:39 AM   #18
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Default Stacking and distributing objects

Need to have stuff piled on top of each, or laying on the ground? Sure you could set up rigid bodies but for a quick fix you can using the stacking feature, under the modify-->snap align objects-->align object-->option box. Select the items you need to be in contact with each other, select stack and chose your axis requirement(s), and apply. This option box is also a great way to align and distribute objects in your scene and should be easily understandable to anyone coming from a 2D graphics background.
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Old 07-03-2005, 08:30 AM   #19
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Default Tear Off Menus

This is a pretty basic tip, but can be a real time saver if you find yourself going back and forth to a particular menu. If a menu set has bars above it (circled below), then you can click on those bars to create a floating menu palette. This menu will stay open until you manually close it and it doesn't matter which mode you're in (modeling, animation, etc.)
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Old 09-03-2005, 08:09 AM   #20
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Default Hidding Faces

It is possible hide faces on geometry that you're editing. To do this, select the faces you WANT to work on, then in the panel menu select show-->isolate select-->view selected. This will hide all the faces that were NOT selected allowing to work more comfortably with the faces you need to edit. This is a neat trick when working in those hard to reach areas that are blocked by other faces (for example inside a mouth). To show all faces again, repeat the same steps (note that there is now a check mark next to view selected).
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Old 10-03-2005, 06:53 PM   #21
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Default i approve!!!

hey man, thanks a lot for starting this thread. keep adding new stuff. i already found a couple of things which would be very useful. just like you started a thread here, i am starting a thread in your name in my comp(saving a word file with your name;-).
if you are learning Maya right now, which books do you refer to? i'm learning too, but i am already done with all the books available here. my current favourite is Maya help.
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Old 11-03-2005, 08:29 AM   #22
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Default Letting go of the handles

When working with the transform tools (move, rotate, & scale) you can constrain transformation along a single axis by left clicking the axis handle you want (it will change to yellow), then click and drag the middle mouse button to make your transformation.. This offers two benefits. First you don't have to be right on the manipulator handles in order use them and in the case of rotate handles will allow to spin more since you can drag across the entire screen and not just to the manipulator limits. Try it out for yourself
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Old 13-03-2005, 08:16 AM   #23
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Default Frame your scene for render

If you've ever been fustrated because your render clipped items you thought would be in the render than this may help. Once you've set your resolution in the global renders options, turn on the camera's resolution gate. A green rectangle (or box if your render resolution is square) will appear in your scene panel. this rectangle represents the portion of the scene that will be rendered, thus avoiding some guess work.
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Old 13-03-2005, 08:18 AM   #24
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Default Call for tips

Just so everyone knows... I welcome others to post their own tips and tricks here.
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Old 13-03-2005, 08:30 AM   #25
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Default recommended reading...

Originally posted by utpal
... which books do you refer to? i'm learning too, but i am already done with all the books available here. my current favourite is Maya help.
I PM'ed Utpal, but if anyone else is wondering I have rather extensive library of Maya books with more on the way. Books that I've found particularly useful are;

The Art of Maya, 3rd Edition - This is good book for 3D concepts in Maya, not a how to, more of what is.

Visual Quickstart for Maya 6 - I recommend the quickstart series for any program you're learning. This book makes a great companion for any of the numerous project based books. It covers tools and settings rather than methods and application so it makes a great reference book.

The Game Artist's Guide to Maya - Required reading if you're developing game characters. Probably the best printed reference I've found on UV mapping so far.

Maya Character Animation - I hope to get to the level in this book someday. For now, it provides excellent information on NURBS, skinning, and mapping.

Besides the above, I have most of the books in Alias' Learning Maya series, two DVDs from SM, cd and DVDs from other sources, and of course the PDF references that come with Maya.

My MEL book is enroute. So much to read, so little time. :0
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Old 14-03-2005, 08:30 PM   #26
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Default Using Multiple Deformers

Maya allows you to apply multiple deformers to a single object. With some foresight you can create otherwise complex models from relatively easy ones. I say foresight because deformation effects are cumulative and depend upon the order in which they're applied. In this example the order was, twist, flare, then bend.

Another thing to keep in mind with deforming is to have enough faces to work with for a smooth deformation. The cube in this image has 30 division along the hieght and 6 on both the width and depth.
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Old 14-03-2005, 08:55 PM   #27
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Default Changing Input Operations Order

This ties in to the previous tip on multiple deformers but is applicable for other operations as well. Right click on the object and from marking menu select inputs-->all inputs. This will display all input operations affecting your object. To change the order of the inputs, middle click and drag the operation's name that you want to move. Drag and drop it to the position you want. This allows you to correct the order or to experiment with different orders.
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Old 16-03-2005, 05:59 PM   #28
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Default Finding Border Edges in Polygons

Okay, I've seen questions about this often enough now to warrant putting this in here.

There are numerous operations which may result in faces not being connected properly. Faces may be missing due to deletion. However, faces don't have to missing to cause problems, edges may be swapped, normals may be reversed, etc. All this may lead to problems such as non-manifold geometry or the innability to boolean correctly. To make these offending edges easier to find, turn on the border edge display option and adjust the thickness to suit. The image below shows a cube with the face deleted. Note the thicker top edge in shaded, wireframe, and edge mode. The border thickness is set to 3.
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Old 18-03-2005, 08:18 AM   #29
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Default Change Multiple Objects' Settings

This one is kind of long and the image is a bit big, but I couldn't think of any other way to get all the necessary info in here. Sorry if it's too much.

Maya's Attribute Spreadsheet is a quick way access attributes for many objects at once and may save you many trips to attribute editor if used properly.

This example will show how you can use this to adjust multiple lights all at once.

In the scene below, "1" shows a screen capture with numerous spot lights. Number "2" shows how that scene renders... obviously way too bright. To fix this, open the Attribute Spreadsheet (under window-->general editors-->attribute spreadsheet..). Hmm, nothing in the spreadsheet... that's because nothing is selected. So select "all by type-->lights" in order to populate the spreadsheet. You can, of course, shift select whichever lights you want to work with.

There are a couple dozen attributes you can change under various tabs. You may need to scroll some to see all the attributes you can play with, feel free to experiment. For the scene below, the intensity needed adjustment. Drag select the intensity value for all the lights, then in type the value you want, in this case 1. The result is show at "3"

In this scene the lights were softened up also. These being spotlights, the adjustment was made to the penumbra attributes, which were changed from 0 to 3. The result is shown in "4."

The Attribute Spreadsheet is a quick way to make changes to virtually any object in your scene (not just lights).
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Old 19-03-2005, 06:56 AM   #30
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Default Selecting by Name

It is a good habit to name your nodes as you create them, as it will make your life much easier when you have to look at them in editors such as hypergraph or hypershade. If you're not already doing this, I'm going to give you one more good reason, it makes them easy to select! In the upper right hand corner (at least on the default configuration) is a field box with a label to left. The label should read "Sel" if it doesn't, click the arrow next to it and switch to the quick selection mode. Then you can select an object any where in your scene by typing its name in the field. Quick select also supports the use of wildcards. Use quick select to pick your object then press "F" to frame it in view.

Note: If you keep this in the quick renaming mode while you're creating your objects and other nodes, it is a very handy way to rename them
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