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How do you make gold with aiStandard? (Maya 2017)

Message 1 of 4
1672 Views, 3 Replies

How do you make gold with aiStandard? (Maya 2017)

Ok, here's the thing, in the aiStandard tab of Arnold 4 it says that, due conservation energy, between diffuse and specular, they shouldn't have values above 1 (100%).

"The relationship between specular and diffuse is what defines what type of material it is. If 50% of it is diffuse energy then the remaining specular energy must be 50%. If the specularity value increases, then the diffuse value must drop and vice versa. For example, chalk has a high diffuse value, with little specularity, whereas glass is highly reflective with almost no diffuse. To achieve a photo-realistic render, the net value of the shaders attributes should not exceed 1." Taken from here:

When I wanted to do gold, I was following a tutorial, but the values that the guy in the video puts in diffuse and specular are .700 and .761, respectively, making the total above 1.

The material library that Maya offers ( has a gold material with the same values in diffuse and specular (.700 and .756) making the total above 1. HOWEVER, we find this information about the material library: bear in mind that the values used here are not based on any physical, real world values and are meant only as a starting point for beginners to explore.

My question is this one... are the values used in the tutorial and shown in the material Gold from the the material library actually wrong or not? OBJECTIVELY THEY ARE. But I if it makes the material look the part, then when it's ok to blow up the settings?

This is gold with a value above 1.4652-captura-de-pantalla-2019-09-26-a-las-230155.png

This is gold with a total value of 1. (Where Diffuse and specular are both in .500).


The difference is very subtle, but it does looks more like a metal the version above 1. Please if anyone can answer... I'm at doubt in here and I really want to know why is this possible or if it's not.

Labels (4)
Message 2 of 4
in reply to: Anonymous

hey, did you go further down the docs? it says when fresnel is enabled, it scales the curve back to 0-1.

Message 3 of 4
in reply to: Anonymous

Is there a reason why you can't switch to Arnold 5? The superior Standard Surface already has a gold preset.

Lee Griggs
Arnold rendering specialist
Message 4 of 4
in reply to: Anonymous

There is no wrong.

Make it look cool.


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