Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Revit City

As I was seaching for some Revit families from manufacturers last week, I came across the Revit City web site. Now I had heard a bit about this site (both good and bad) and thought it would be a good time to look into what could be obtained from it. So here goes...

There was a lot of material on the site, and even though I have not had to use the CSI standards category for a while, the site had the same look and feel to it. Organized into familiar categories, I went looking for windows. Seems like you can never have enough window types in Revit.

There are some very interesting Revit families to create windows on the site, and I think its commendable that things have come this far with what is a free site fed by community members. The first image is an image of an impressive window with ornamental trim. It does though act more like a traditional AutoCAD block rather than a family. It has two sizes which you can't adjust though parameters, and only the depth of the window was adjustable, and that did not work 100% either.

A couple more examples of windows which again work fine when inserted into your project. But when you search for parameters to change or when you change them things do go ary.

I think that these attempts are good, and that if you take them as they are, (things you have obtained for free) they are great. Play with them on projects you are doing as tests for Revit. When you get into the serious projects you need professionally made families.

Next post, I'll have a look at the Anderson window families. Unitl then, cheers.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

SWEET...!!! - Sweets Online 3D Catalogue.

Well this is pretty cool, Sweets Catalogue has an online edition which features 60 manufacturer's products in a 3D collection which can be viewed using the Google Sketchup Viewer.

After installing the Sketchup Viewer, you download .skp file to your local drive and view them or use them in a building model.

Models range from Windows and Doors to Fridges and Stoves.

It's a great start to be able to view manufacturers products online in 3D. Revit offers even more possibilities. Revit families are the equivalent these 3d elements in the sketchup catalogue but with so much more. Imagine being able to import a model from a manufacturer, and being able to generate a high quality render in Revit's new mental ray engine. Pretty pictures aside, when you populate a building project in Revit with a manufacturer's products you can generate quantity takeoffs from the Revit project into easy to use schedules.

In order to make this the most useful all manufacturers need to get onboard with producing Revit libraries. So an entire project can be populated with information direct from the manufacurer. Sweets would be a great leader in this effort.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

HDRI Images

More and more people are asking questions about HDRI images. HDRI or High Dynamic Range Images are photographic files which are capable of storing information at different exposures. Whenever you have reflections and /or want to use an image to light a scene in 3ds Max HRDI will improve the quality of your scene.

I'm no expert in taking these images, but I know it can be complicated, so I did stumble across the other day an excellent image database. Like many model sites this site contains many HDRI images which you can purchase for a fee.

A sample image is provided free.

Have a look, I think you will like it.