Author Topic: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide  (Read 13534 times)

Offline razmirz

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Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« on: October 07, 2013, 04:09:23 pm »
As we now have preset sync it's time people started making considerations about the size of their presets as we do only have limited storage.

So I'm going to provide a quick tutorial in shrinking your presets using Gimp.

Firstly and most obviously, changing the dimentions of the files.
Some people use 1024px x 1024px files or bigger. This is really quite unnecessary. 512 x 512 should be the max size. The tail can be even smaller, perhaps 128 x 128. You can draw as the high resolutions but try and re-size down for the final product. Why should the eyeballs need the same size texture as the entire body?

PNG
The next common issue is the use of .png's.

I know why you all like to use .png's; they store the entire image exactly as the original was with a reasonable file size. Only there are ways to make it far smaller. So lets start with a body .png.


Heres our original a fairly normal body texture. 512 pixels square. It's current size is 339KB

Sticking with pngs as they are needed if you want to use transparency.
Lets start by indexing.
Open the index dialogue as follows



Set the "max colors" to 255 and go to File>Export

Once saved, we now have this

This is only 146KB so we've more than halved the size of the preset. Can you really see the difference? All we've done is reduce the number of colours this method won't work so well for a rainbow preset with lots of different colours. But most presets use varying shades of 1 or 2 colours.

Using the same method we can reduce the pallet further this time. I used 128.

So we've halved the palette again but this time we only shrank to 119KB. Still a saving but you might find its not worthwhile for you.

The rest of this guide will cover non-transparent textures only. (Note: if you not using alpha_blend as your transparencey method you can still use these).

JPG
JPG is an awesomely underrated format. Its weakness is the stark contrast you get in some digital art. Luckily our preset has a nice fuzzy texture.
When saving .jpg's, there's an excellent option to preview your compression level.



Heres the image stored in jpg at 100% quality. Just saving it as a jpg has shrunk it down to 183KB which is still over a third off the original.

Now lets try 60%

Those with a good eye will see round the edges of the preset there's a light fuzz. Luckily this is almost all outside the area that's applied to the preset. Where it is inside the applied area its well hidden by the fur texture that's there. This time we have shrunk the texture down to just 37KB!

BMP
At this point you may think me crazy. BMP is the highest quality format I will mention here. Technically it's completely uncompressed so leaves us with large image files.


At 1025KB this is huge compared to our other condensers, but when it goes into the preset file it's compressed where .jpg's and .png's can't be. The compression leaves the file at 314kb. Ok, not a major reduction over .png but it is smaller.

When we save BMP though, if we click advanced, we have some options.

By choosing a 16bit colour pallet we are limiting ourselves to 65536 colours instead of the standard millions.


On a normal computer screen you will see no difference here at all. We have halved the storage required and are down to 513KB before putting it into the preset and a modest 173KB after.

Finally, on top of this we can do the same as the PNG's and index the image.

Our original is now 258KB and compressed. It's 148KB so we've actually beaten PNG with a higher quality format. (Note to firefox users: firefox seems to have turned some of the image pink this should not be a problem anywhere else)

DDS
My next format is one you may not know. Its called DDS, its a special format designed for the graphics card. It's indexed like .png but its indexed to what your graphics card works with and it's loaded directly into the graphics card without conversion. Making it a faster format for those laggy presets.

Gimp doesn't support .dds by default but you can get the dds plugin here
I won't detail installing it as it comes with readme and there's docs on the site.

DDS can support transparency but I've always found .png to handle it better.
When saving with the dds plugin it will ask for a few things

Set the compression to DXT1 if you want to try it with transparency I recommend DXT5.


This is what our result looks like the file is 129KB so we've saved a good amount of space. But better still is .dds textures can be compressed further just like the bmp's so when it goes into the preset file it shrinks to a mere 79KB!


Using a mixture of the methods above I have managed to take a preset with over 20 image files that was already pretty well compressed at 4MB right down to 1MB. So next time you make a preset, when you're saving those image files, think about the kind of image your working with. Does it need transparency? Does it use a lot of colours? Would it be affected by a little fuzz?

Hope this helps you all crush down those textures to get more in your presets.

Raz


Extra
For completeness I've added a little table of other formats and how well they compressed. All of the following can be used in GIMP

Format        Size       Compressed  Indexed255  Indexed+Compressed
gif172KB168KB
pcx274KB279KB217KB153KB
ras511KB289KB185KB147KB
tga705KB316KB193KB157KB
xpm928KB325KB519KB177KB
sgi595KB274KB573KB483KB
tif(LZW)369KB369KB
tif(PackBits)951KB312KB
tif(Deflate)313KB312KB
« Last Edit: October 10, 2013, 11:38:09 am by Razmirz »
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Offline SteampunkWolfdog

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #1 on: October 07, 2013, 07:25:40 pm »
This should be very helpful for all our preset-making floofs ^^ Glad to see Flob's fuzziness can be of use. :P

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Offline Whinp

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #2 on: October 12, 2013, 10:44:58 am »
Very helpful! When I get on my computer I'll try that! :D




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Offline hugrf2

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2013, 02:10:37 am »
I have an oversized preset that I requested, and I was only given the .fhp.... Should I ask .exe (the person I requested) to shrink the size, or...? Heh, I know it's a stupid question.

Anyway... Thanks for the tutorial, Raz! ^.^ I'm sure it will be very helpful still. c:

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Offline razmirz

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #4 on: October 17, 2013, 09:43:18 pm »
u either need the files they used to export it or ask them to shirnk it
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Offline Forrest-Delta

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #5 on: November 30, 2013, 09:17:21 pm »
 :( i did everything right, it showed the preset and everything, and the glowing stuff, but i cant export it D:

Offline WolfMain

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #6 on: August 19, 2014, 06:04:47 pm »
i cant understand ;(

Offline Agentsanddogs

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #7 on: June 09, 2016, 08:38:34 pm »
hi there guys
hello

Offline Hakumi

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #8 on: June 09, 2016, 08:40:49 pm »
hi there guys


Be careful not to bump up old threads. If you want to make an introduction you can do so in the introductions thread c:

Til We Meet Again....

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Offline Little Rosy

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Re: Preset Texture Format/Shrinking Guide
« Reply #9 on: June 14, 2016, 10:15:12 pm »
I dont understand! And I cant figure out how to make my computer download it... >_< Please help!
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