P3D v4 P3DV4/5 texture formats

Specifically, is the full detail BMP 32-bit texture still available in P3D?

I always use the DXTBMP program for conversion and I remember there was a site world of trainz which had a good write up of DXT formats and other formats. That site is offline now. I wanted a similar summary of what texture formats are still being used in P3DV4+.
 

Vitus

Resource contributor
I use DXT1 for all textures without an alpha channel and DXT5 for all textures with an alpha channel. I never came across a situation where I needed anything else. As far as I remember, DXT1 uses 4 bit per channel and DXT5 8. So yes, using DXT5 you'll get the full 32bit.
 

Pyscen

Resource contributor
If I remember correctly, there is a summary within the DXTBMP zip, I believe.

P3Dv4 and beyond use the same as the previous. In terms of DXT1, DXT3, and DXT5, the uses for, etc. haven't changed.
 
Thanks for the replies. Answered my question.

The old native 32-bit BMP texture was a much higher resolution and gave sharp textures much better than the DXT5. Also size was 3x DXT5. It did not of course have an alpha channel.
 

Pyscen

Resource contributor
What does the texture look like that you are judging this by? Generallly speaking, it has to do with size and the number of colors also.
 

Vitus

Resource contributor
Thanks for the replies. Answered my question.

The old native 32-bit BMP texture was a much higher resolution and gave sharp textures much better than the DXT5. Also size was 3x DXT5. It did not of course have an alpha channel.
Could it be that you created mipmaps when exporting DDS textures? Those would screw up your resolution.
 

tgibson

Resource contributor
Hi,

Actually 32 bit textures do have an alpha channel - 24 bits for color and 8 bits for the alpha channel.

And they still display fine in P3Dv4.5, which is what I have.
 

=rk=

Resource contributor
The old native 32-bit BMP texture was a much higher resolution and gave sharp textures much better than the DXT5.
Never even heard of such a thing, but, given it's a big internet, how could you need better resolution than .DDS, with whichever of the compression algorithms?


 

=rk=

Resource contributor
Researching implies 32 bit has higher quality, but there is no quantitative data and as the image above implies, why would one need more detail than a shirt button, or facial wrinkle. Here's an interesting point by our own Jim Robinson from a decade ago ("new" 7800gs!):
Jim Robinson said:
Abscense of an alpha channel can also make textures blurry. Aircraft textures should always include an alpha channel even if it's all white. If you save them once as 32 bit 888 in DXTBmp the app will add an all-white alpha channel if one doesn't exist already. Afterwards they can be re-saved as DXT3 and DXTBmp will preserve the alpha.

EDIT: Actually it appears that DXTBmp adds the alpha when saving as DXT3 as well so I guess the extra 32 bit step isn't necessary. I also found that my new graphics card (7800GS) doesn't seem to care whether or not the textures have alpha, however it was always an issue with my old one. I'd try either DXT3 or 32 bit (888) in DXTBmp and see what happens.
 

tgibson

Resource contributor
At least for some of my textures, converting to DXT (any version) leads to a degradation of the quality of the colors - the colors start to shift. Yes, I only convert them once. So for those textures at least, I use the 888 32 bit format, which leaves them exactly as I created them. This is extremely rare for AI aircraft and scenery (too much texture loading), but I do it all the time for flyable aircraft. Beautiful results with my slight weathering and such which does not turn greenish (for example - a common effect of DXT conversion).
 
At least for some of my textures, converting to DXT (any version) leads to a degradation of the quality of the colors - the colors start to shift. Yes, I only convert them once. So for those textures at least, I use the 888 32 bit format, which leaves them exactly as I created them. This is extremely rare for AI aircraft and scenery (too much texture loading), but I do it all the time for flyable aircraft. Beautiful results with my slight weathering and such which does not turn greenish (for example - a common effect of DXT conversion).
Right Tom. I usually have one high density texture which is 4096x4096 32-bit. It is packed with all my main building textures. Even on large airports it basically is the only texture that is called upon. It is sharp in sim because it does not lose any fidelity. Now I am sure others will argue against this but my results speak for themselves.
 
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