[Chimera-users] Shadows

Elaine Meng meng at cgl.ucsf.edu
Fri Feb 12 10:46:58 PST 2010

Hi David,
I'm a bit confused about what you mean.  Images saved directly from  
Chimera (non-raytraced) do not have shadows per se, but they do have  
"shading."  Although there is an "show shadows" setting in the Effects  
tool, it is turned off by default, and those shadows are always blocky  
as far as I know, and not intended for saved images, only as  
interactive previews for raytracing.  You probably aren't using that  
"show shadows" setting.  Conversely, with raytracing there is no such  
thing as supersampling.

If you were showing atoms/ribbons, I'd suggest increasing "subdivision  
quality" (also in Effects) to increase the smoothness of the objects  
and thus the shading in Chimera.  However, this does not affect  
isosurfaces.  There are separate smoothing controls in Volume Viewer  
for such surfaces, see this recent post:

Check that you are using the full resolution of your data and not a  
subsampling (coarser grid).

My only other idea is that maybe you were using raytracing before.

If none of these comments help, please use "Help... Report a Bug" in  
the Chimera menu and include a complete description of your  
situation.  This also allows attaching a file and including your email  
address for a response.
Elaine C. Meng, Ph.D.
UCSF Computer Graphics Lab (Chimera team) and Babbitt Lab
Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry
University of California, San Francisco

On Feb 12, 2010, at 8:06 AM, David Bhella wrote:

> Hi,
> I just updated my Chimera installation to 1.4.1 (Mac OSX aqua), and  
> I noticed that for some reason shadows are not so nicely rendered in  
> standard 3x3 super-sampled output.  They look very blocky, much as  
> they always have done in the viewer. In version 1.4 I always got  
> very nice shadows when I saved an image. I am trying to save images  
> of an isosurface view of a 3D reconstruction. Is there a setting I  
> need to adjust to get high quality shadows back again?
> Many thanks,
> Dave

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