There are several vital elements that helped me get to where I am now, so credit where it's due:
- Horo's "HDRShop v.1.0.3 – 1. Creating an HDRI" helped me get the HDRShop part of my process working - many thanks Horo!
- Vincebagna's "How to use UberEnvironment2 with your own HDR pictures" at RDNA helped me get the procedure for creating a correctly formatted .tif sorted.
- And my own "UberEnvironment2 - Can Anybody Explain The Result Of This Simple Test?" thread at DAZ3D prompted lots of useful input from many people (especially Horo and Takeo.Kensei)
- The realization that HDR images used for diffuse lighting are usually very small (512x512 or less) - many, many places confirmed this!
I found that using negative Terragen Classic exposure settings was the biggest mistake - these made my HDR much too dark and I couldn't get things to look any good in Poser/DAZ Studio no matter how much I fiddled and tweaked. However, when I tried using just four exposure settings of 0, +1, +2 and +3 the end results in Poser/DAZ Studio were much better. A picture speaks a thousand words, so here are two Poser 9 renders (top) and two DAZ Studio renders (bottom - DR3.duf) using my worldball with a new HDR set that I'm working on:
In both cases the worldball sun is switched off, so the only light is from the HDR.
- In Poser this HDR light is my worldball IBL with my HDR angular map plugged into it. (Root light node intensity=1.8, Contrast=0.5,AO swithed on with default settings)
- In DAZ Studio both worldball sun and IBL are turned off, and I've used the UberEnvironment2 with my 'convolved ue2ified TIF'* as the IBL. (intensity scale=150%, contrast=75%, 4xHi quality, occlusion with directional shadows)
I'm very pleased with the results!
*I know what that means! ;o)