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Key Terms

  • Self-Illumination maps. This map slot makes the material look as if it's glowing from within by overriding the ambient (shaded) areas with full brightness. It could be used to simulate light bulbs or a glowing computer monitor, for example.

  • Bump maps. Bump maps use the luminance value, or brightness of pixels, to give the illusion of added geometry when rendered. White pixels look as if they're raised, while black pixels do nothing. Gray pixels appear at intermediate levels.

  • Alpha channel. Alpha channels contain embedded information used to make black areas of a bitmap fully transparent. Gray pixels will be semi-transparent. Only certain file types can contain alpha channels: .png, .tga, and .tif are the most commonly used files in 3ds max 7.


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