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New question re input file structures acceptable to bifrostgraph

Message 1 of 20
663 Views, 19 Replies

New question re input file structures acceptable to bifrostgraph

Aside from cacheing a .bob file, what mesh formats can be entered directly, without cacheing, as direct input to a Bifrost graph. I have used wavefront obj format successfully but what others can be used and particularly for rigged and animated applications.

Message 2 of 20

Alembic should work fine.

Message 3 of 20

Thanks for the reply. The alembic file needs to be an intact mesh. The bifrost compiler doesn't seem to like single meshes that have been combined in MAYA from more than one mesh. I've been experimenting with Blender using FBX and OBJ files as input, and alembic as output ...some work after transforming to alembic and some do not. It's not clear how to get around this other than avoiding the issue.



Message 4 of 20

@anthony6UVHQ, we'd be interested in fixing any problems you are having with importing meshes into Bifrost. If you could provide reproducable steps of the problem you are having, I could take a look. Thank you.

Message 5 of 20

Thank you Morten. Really appreciate the support. I'll try to get something that's reproducible to you during the week. At moment we can work around most mesh issues modifying obj, fbx or other at source before file transcription to alembic, (in a suck it and see mode!) and keep our work flow moving.


Message 6 of 20

Here is some tools I use with Quixel, this should help i'll clean them up tomorrow cool.

Message 7 of 20
in reply to: anthony6UVHQ


Here's a start: It would appear that quad files work and triangular mesh files do not. In some cases .obj will run without transcribing to alembic format. Using MAYA to quadrangulate triangle meshes seems to work as long as the resulting mesh is not too large. Cant give an exact number but less than 12MB seems OK. Sorry if this vague.

Attached is a file that in fact works with various quad densities.



Message 8 of 20
in reply to: anthony6UVHQ


I was unable to attach the . mb file for you to run in MAYA I referred to in the previous post.. Sorry. The AREA message website does not permit. Happy to find another way.


Message 9 of 20



The forum accepts only certain formats like image and zip files. You should be able to zip .mb and .ma files and then upload them.




Grahame Fuller
Learning Content Developer
Message 10 of 20

Thank you Gray. 


Message 11 of 20
in reply to: anthony6UVHQ


Attached is a zip file containing an .mb file for disintegration of various meshes which you can select. Except for the primitive spherical mesh all are .obj meshes we have scanned and execute as expected. The Greek Head examples, also .obj files do not execute. The original file is included.

Let us know what you suggest as a consistent methodology to process mesh files and perhaps how to avoid issues.  As I mentioned I suspect objects that are only triangular meshes will not work (likely the way the matrices in the program written by Marcus works). 




Message 12 of 20
in reply to: anthony6UVHQ


Attached is an additional folder containing an .mb file as before with the addition of an alembic mesh (.abc file enclosed) as input which does not run. The original mesh is a scanned .obj file (scanned here at the studio) and transcribed to an alembic file in Blender.



Message 13 of 20

@anthony6UVHQ, I am a litte confused about what isn't "processing". At first I thought you were talking about not being able to cache meshes to Alembic, but now I am not sure. Are you talking about certain meshes not working with Marcus Nordenstam's disintegration example?

Message 14 of 20

I think you want to do a level set? like LOD and switch through the High to low, here is one way. but if is for rebuilding scans the I have compond build for that too, it  switches between the LOD using convert to Volume and adds back UV's from the original scan.

Message 15 of 20

Morten, I certainly didn't want to confuse you. The issue is that the Nordenstam example of disintegration does not process certain meshes and the zip files I posted give the opportunity to run the programs with various meshes to see the problem. In the long run I'm trying to get animated figures to dissolve but first things understanding of what meshes will work and what will not.


There is no issue with transcription from.obj or other to alembic via Blender or other. Thank you for your interest.



Message 16 of 20

Thank you for your suggestion. I'll check it out.



Message 17 of 20

ok I get what you need I went through a few of these problems a while back so here is where you'll find what you need.

OK first off you need to understand how to import animated alempic files and how to trigger them a bunch of little things you need to learn. If you already have a good understanding here will solve most of your problems there

Quixel exports plants and rocks geos in one alimpic, so I just cycle through because each Geo has an ID attached to them. So by looping them and randomly indexing it I can scatter random pieces of geometry from one alempic. 

Now once you're done watching that video this is where I found the solution to my UV problem. I'm taking Hi-Rez quixel models turning them into volumes and then adding the texture back on them. But I was stuck losing the UV's in the end of my output. But the beginning part of this video is great it will explain to you how geometry.  works. But it also explains how to break up a surface for your blending purposes.
Good LUCK!

Message 18 of 20

OK thank you. Lots to learn. I am in fact able to animate disassembling or dissolving meshes including retaining UV exterior surfaces from the assembled mesh start point. However some meshes will work (e.g. obj or alembic)and others do not. This is the case for different object meshes which have the same file structures (obj or alembic) and are quad. I have yet to discover what makes one work and not the other.  C'est la vie!



Message 19 of 20

Just use this this will get you a lot farther and faster bring the alempic in of your scan messed-up and garbage doesn’t matter Bifrost will fix so many holes in bad mesh. And you can also use it like a VOD level set by just reducing the detail level. Keep everything in bifrost. Don’t take this back out to Maya, convert your volume right there bring in the UV’s from the video I showed you above from your original scan and then you can just apply the original texture to it. So then you don’t have to really correct UV. To do it the right way I would correct the UV‘s but I’ve been working with junk and it just works so I don’t have to make an extra step for just an asset. My last tip is some of these people are amazing at programming reverse engineering there scripts.  I have been joyful and made my life fun, so thank you everybody for sharing. Don’t put it back out as a mesh just keep it in bifrost

Message 20 of 20

Cleanup mesh video very helpful indeed.  Will see if this approach doesn't fix my issues.

Thanks again.



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