What are PBR Textures?
PBR, or Physically Based Rendering, is a model of shading used in computer graphics that more closely mimics the flow of light in the real world.
PBR textures produce a higher quality of realness with greater variations of lighting, producing flexibility and predictability in the final product.
PBR texturing’s most popular workflows are specular, and metalness workflows.
Supported by many 3d applications and game engines worldwide each has its unique appeal to the individual user.
To create material in specular workflow you will need the following maps:
- Albedo (Diffuse) Map – base color input, which is the most important map, giving information about the color of the object.
- Specular Map – defines an object’s shininess by using a greyscale map. In its practical application the brighter the shade, the more light will be reflected.
- Glossiness Map – this map controls the reflectivity of an object, whether the reflection of light will be blurred or sharp.
- Normal Map – this map determines the number of dents and bumps an object has. Similar to a bump map yet more advanced, the normal map is saved in RGB format, containing its information in XYZ axes.
- Height (Displacement) Map – this map is saved as a grayscale which creates a larger group of convexities and creases which affect the objects mesh.
The Metalness workflow utilizes the following maps:
- Albedo (Diffuse) Map – this map works the same way as the Specular Workflow.
- Metalness Map – saved as a grayscale this map controls the amount of reflectivity of a surface. The white translates into a pure metal surface, while the black translates to non-metallic surfaces.
- Roughness Map – this map works similarly to the glossiness in the specular workflow. It is also in grayscale and stores the same information yet is inverted. This means that the black color in this map will have a sharp shiny finish, while the white has a fuzzy (matte) finish.
- Normal Map – this map creates bumps and dents as in the specular workflow.
- Height (Displacement) Map – this map is used in the same way as the specular workflow.
In both of these workflows, you may not need all the maps in all situations, such as the normal map or the heightmap. At other times you may only need specific maps, such as the Ambient Occlusion map or the Emissive map. Each texture has its own needs.
Using PBR Textures
When planning to use textures created for the specular workflow in Unreal Engine, you need to convert the glossiness map to the roughness map. To do this, use the OneMinus node to connect between the texture map and the roughness map, which will invert the image. This means black will be white and white will be black.
In addition, connect all the other textures as usual. The Diffuse map for the Base Color, and the Reflection for Specular and the Normal for Normal.
When creating PBR material in Unity 3D using specular workflow, you must change the shader of the created material to Standard (Specular setup). There is no separate slot for Glossiness, and you will need to use the Alpha channels in either Albedo or Specular maps. Paste the Glossiness map into the alpha channel of the specular map in any 2D editing application.
Finally, add the map to the Specular slot, the diffuse map to the Albedo slot, and the normal to Normal, and height to Height.
3ds max and V-Ray
If you’re using 3ds Max with V-Ray, use the material editor to create a regular VRayMtl. Then add the diffuse, reflection, and glossiness. In the bump slot, add the VRayNormal map. Inside it on Bump Map load the Normal map. You can also add a VRayDisplacementMod modifier to the object with the Height map as a Texmap.
With Substance Painter you can also use PBR Textures to create your own personal textures, inserting all the maps into their appropriate slots and loading it as a stencil or fill layer. Remember to set either specular or metalness before you begin.
The use of PBR textures provides more coherent, realistic and predictable results. It also works well under different lighting conditions, and thanks to Normal and Height maps you will get a satisfactory effect without the need to model extra details. Therefore, regardless of whether your work is related to the game industry or architecture, it is worth knowing what benefits Physical Based Rendering gives you.
Hi, can we have an update guide of PBR texture for CD4+Vray??
Thank you very much!
Hi, I plan to buy the 500 PBR texture pack. Is there a tutorial for Lightwave 3d? Thank you
Do you guys have any recommended scaling for all of your materials? (Approximations of real-world dimensions to properly UV map)
how can I properly match the different maps with Vray advanced material slots (Cinema 4D version)?
For example, how should I use glossiness map?
What is the difference between ao and diffuse map..i am trying to use it cinema 4d and octane.
Hi, thank you for your reply, much appreciated. Is there a script or conversion tool that you know of? I just bought your 1000+ PBR Texture Pack and I would prefer not to have to assign each one.
Can we have an up to date guide for max/vray?
Also it looks like your Normal map is wired to the wrong channel.
I am using Revit, is there a tutorial on how to load into revit. I’m getting close but its just not quite right.
Does anybody know a script to batch load the maps and create a shader with 3Ds Max/Vray.
Because we have downloaded the 500 shader pack, and would like to add it to our Material Library without doing one by one.
I’m using 3DS Max with Arnold using the standard surface shader. Does anybody have any tips on what slots these materials go in?
Corona + 3dsmax work flow? Want to buy PBR deal tomorrow.
3ds max + Corona is almost identical to the 3ds max + V-Ray. You just need to use CoronaDisplacementMod for Height Map and Corona Normal for the Normal Map.
Would like to get your recommendation and steps for using these textures in Chief Architect.
Hi, im using keyshot 8 and im having trouble using the height texture. Is there any tutorial I can use? thanks in advance.
Can these be used on Lumion 6?
I would like to ask to use Cinema 4D + Corona. Where to use Normal maps? Or what to do with Bump?
Hi Jan, for C4D & Corona you have put it in the bump map. But within a corona normal shader.
Click in the bumpmap on the arrow behind texture then first choose corona > normal. In that normal shader you place the normal map. have fun!
Vray + 3ds. Why the normal map goes into the bump slot? As far as I know it should go into the normal slot and the bmp has to be loaded with an override gamma 1.0
I was about to ask the same thing.
because its about vray? And vray has its own workflow regarding normal maps?
all modern renderers support pbr workflow
Thinking more what goes to what inside the AistandardShader
Hi! Is There any workflow for Maya 2018 (Arnold standard surface)
Hi, I just bought the 500 PBR texture pack. Is there a tutorial for Cinema 4d? I’m struggling to get the displacement to work.
If you are using default Cinema 4D renderer you just need to add normal map to the ‘normal’ slot and height map to the ‘displacement’ slot in your material. Just remember to check sub-polygon displacement with some subdivision levels to get details.
Let me guess: cant be used by Lightwave.
all modern renderers support pbr workflow