/retro/ - Y2K

1990s and 2000s Nostalgia

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Modern /retro/ material that actually does it right Fellow Time Traveler 08/06/2020 (Thu) 18:36:27 No.768
Let's have a new thread without a tonne of broken images. Have there been any new forms of /retro/ media (could be movies, games, anime, websites, etc.) that wanted to look old and actually succeeded? There's an artist called BlueTheBone who makes "retro"-styled animations, cheesecake, and porn. Like any modern hack, he overdoses on visual clutter and uses filters that don't actually resemble the time period he's trying to emulate - but despite that, I think his style is consistently decent. If he relied less on computers and filters, then I think he'd be a much better artist, but that goes without saying for most contemporary artists. The really weird things happen when he tries to make modern character designs and media look old, like pic 2. It isn't exactly wrong, but there is something perplexing about viewing characters and series that were developed specifically with modern aesthetics in mind.
Check out this Japanese guy's channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCcegcJA0ijqaZUUyvGtr5xQ He makes low-poly CGI animations using blender, records the output to VHS tape, and then uses some kind of capture card to bring it back to the digital realm.
>>768 Very few artists have managed to accurately capture the /retro/ look, and that's because they try too hard. It's always a small detail or two that stick out and scream "modern" at my face. Like I see a lot of images nowadays with a very heavy VHS effect applied, and fake scanlines with OSD on top, it's just not convincing at all. Let's take the first pic for example; a VHS frame from an anime produced in the 80s or the 90s by the latest. I can see multiple issues here: >resolution and quality This is a 720p+ image with fine details. It should be 480p at most with muddied details. The second pic is slightly better in this regard. >color contrast The contrast between colors is too low and the whole image has a pastel overlay. If anything screams "2010s" it's pastel colors. When VHS washes out colors they do appear desaturated, but the differences between them are still obvious, like a painting with bright saturated colors that are clearly different, but having gathered some dust on top. See first pic related. >visible pixels The VCR OSD looks extremely fake (i.e. play, vcr tape...etc) like you know this was lazily taped-on heh with an editor. Normally OSD doesn't look pixelated, instead it gets blurred like literally everything else on tape and ends up with a smooth look. If you can see pixels on VHS you're doing it wrong, see second pic related. >OSD Who puts OSD on a VHS frame anyway? When people started uploading digitized VHS frames to the internet in the 90s, none of them included OSD. What kind of rookie would include it? Overall it would have been much easier, and much more convincing, to just take a regular picture with bright colors, record it on VHS, then digitize it back. Like what this guy did: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_oJs8-I9WtA ... The end result has a subtle, but very convincing VHS effect. And that's coming from an original footage that was shot at 4K! Keep it simple, stupid. Also if you really want that "I took the tape out of the dog's mouth" effect, just record your tape on another tape, and see if the second tape has degraded enough for your tastes. If not, record that second tape on another tape then check again. Here's a demonstration: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G8GOcB6H0uQ >>769 Pretty cool. This guy is much more convincing because he uses a real VHS rather than a digital filter, but he fell into some pitfalls in regards to the 3D render. I'm not an expert by any means on 3D but I can pick up on a few errors, such as... >polygon count Notice how the head of the girl in the first vid is less complex than her hands? Now notice how the scene around her is even more complex? That's an inconsistency that sticks out. You either go low poly for everything equally without any textures or reflections, or you go high poly but keep the shapes basic without too much detail. Vid related is probably what 空想料理店 蟹 was trying to do; an early-mid 80s 3D render with low polygons all around. >smooth animation In the 80s and even part of the 90s doing 30 FPS or higher in 3D was very expensive. Artists would stick to the "cinematic" 24 FPS if they could afford it, if not they would only go lower, again like in vid related. >??? I can't put my finger on this one, but almost every Blender render looks modern. I don't know if it's shaders or just the renderer itself but it always has that very unique Blender look that feels modern. I'm a firm believer that anyone who wants to make "old" content should only use the tools that were available at the time... Wanna make an old comic? Use real ink on paper rather than a drawing tablet. Wanna make 80s music? Use a real synthesizer/keyboard and record on tape rather than a DAW. Wanna create vintage CGI? Use the original 3D Studio or Infini-D rather than Blender. Sorry for the wall of autism, I'll be posting some actual contributions shortly.
First up we have Jack Stauber, famous for the 'Two Time' song which you've probably stumbled upon by now. Not only does he emulate 80s visual styles on an authentic worn out VHS, he also emulates 80s synthpop very accurately, which is something I can't recall anyone doing since the 2000s. It would be even more impressive if this was done digitally, because it's just too convincing to suggest so. The modernism lies in the subject matter of his videos, which is usually kept unclear and a bit too surreal on purpose. He also sports the Blender look I talked about in the previous post when he does 3D, which you can see in the video 'view'.
Next up we have SkyCorp Home Video™, a youtube channel that makes authentic-looking VHS logos and segments purely for comedic effect, often parodying 80s and 90s cheese. For the most part they get the 3D right, and the subtle VHS effect works perfectly.
Our last feature for today: North Korean pop songs! With NK citizens completely shut off from the outside world since the 70s (?) their lives have been pretty much frozen in time, creating unintentional /retro/. Their music is ABBA-esque, and although their fashion sense and recording technology may be from a decade or two into The Future™, they're still very 20th century. This would be cool if NK wasn't ruled by a complete maniac. Next time someone asks you about K-pop, show him Moranbong Band! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AOH41w7M2tU https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCQ3iJLuw8M https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rVsaOYZl3E0 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KQx6HIcVxFg
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>>771 >I can't put my finger on this one, but almost every Blender render looks modern. I don't know if it's shaders or just the renderer itself but it always has that very unique Blender look that feels modern. I think there was a way to make POVRay renderings in Blender, but from what I remember that option hasn't work since Blender 2.8 came out. I'd love to get into vintage-style 3D rendering at some point, so it's too bad that there aren't more easy modern ways to get that look right off the bat. >I'm a firm believer that anyone who wants to make "old" content should only use the tools that were available at the time... Wanna make an old comic? Use real ink on paper rather than a drawing tablet. Wanna make 80s music? Use a real synthesizer/keyboard and record on tape rather than a DAW. Wanna create vintage CGI? Use the original 3D Studio or Infini-D rather than Blender. I agree. It seems like people just want to take the easy way out without putting actual work in. It's one thing if you're just taking certain aspects of past aesthetics, but if you intend to go all the way you shouldn't half-ass it by merely adopting superficial similarities with the old styles. It's too bad a lot of the old ways of the doing things are becoming harder to practice since they're no longer the norm. Film photography has become a niche interest. Bland tablet-drawn art has replaced hand-drawn art for most uses. Clinical digital recordings are the norm for music now. When the new ways have become so convenient and efficient, it's going to take some real discipline and determination to use the old methods when things have become comparatively easy.
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>>776 >I'd love to get into vintage-style 3D rendering at some point, so it's too bad that there aren't more easy modern ways to get that look right off the bat. I'm interested in vintage 3D too, there are modern programs that can make it with relative ease though. I've stumbled upon a few while surfing the interwebs, there must be more out there of course but the following list should be a good starting point... >Anim8or Freeware, first released 1999 and still actively developed today. A modeler, renderer, and --you guessed it-- animator. Easy to get into but does things differently than most other programs. Pic 1 is a sample render. >Art of Illusion FOSS, first released 2000 and still actively developed today. Pretty much the same as Anim8or. Pic 2 is a sample render. >POV-Ray You already know about this one. Since it's only a renderer, you'll have to model your scene elsewhere (Anim8or + ani2pov should work) and then import it for rendering. Pic 3 is a sample render. >3D Studio MAX [1.0 - 3.1] Windows edition of the popular 3D Studio for DOS, the versions in brackets were released between 1996 and 1999. Much easier to use than its DOS counterpart and runs just fine on Windows 7. The best version according to my limited testing is 2.5. >Bryce [2.0 - 5.5] The program used to make the picture in your post (hiresdome). The versions in brackets were released between 1996 and 2005, 5.5 was released for free some years ago so you can find it easily. Not really a modeler since it's focused almost exclusively on terrain generation, but can render and perform basic animations. However unlike the previously mentioned programs whose renders look pretty much identical, Bryce has a very unique render style that can be spotted from a mile away.
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>>778 >I'm interested in vintage 3D too, there are modern programs that can make it with relative ease though. I've stumbled upon a few while surfing the interwebs, there must be more out there of course but the following list should be a good starting point... How easy are they to learn for a complete newcomer though? >Windows edition of the popular 3D Studio for DOS, the versions in brackets were released between 1996 and 1999. Much easier to use than its DOS counterpart and runs just fine on Windows 7. The best version according to my limited testing is 2.5. I have the DOS version but never tried it, so that's good to know. Thanks for all the info. I'll have to save it somewhere. I'm more into tinkering with music than with visual art forms, but at some point I'd like to experiment with cheesy '90s-style ROMpler music and old-school CG artwork would fit that like a glove should I ever decide to release anything.
>>779 >How easy are they to learn for a complete newcomer though? Quite easy, as long as you have basic knowledge of the 3-axis system (x/y/z). The manual/documentation is very straightforward from what I've seen, and you'll find online tutorials for pretty much everything... There aren't that many tools in each program to wrap your head around, it's just that there's a lot of donkey work to be done using these tools, especially when modelling. For example it's easy to drop a sphere into the window and edit its points, but it will take some considerable time to transform said sphere into a face with features. My advice is start small, learn the basics and familiarize yourself with the program you're using, then render a simple scene. Some people never make it past the modelling stage because they obsess too much over the quality of their first models, don't fall into that trap. Make your models and move on. As you gain experience you can revisit your old scenes and refine their models, but you must have scenes to begin with. >I'm more into tinkering with music than with visual art forms Oh really? How about sharing some of your pieces here, I'd love to check them out.
>>771 >Wanna make 80s music? Use a real synthesizer/keyboard and record on tape rather than a DAW. Are there any modern artists who do this? If there aren't any then I'd like to try making music this way.
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>>780 >Quite easy, as long as you have basic knowledge of the 3-axis system (x/y/z). The manual/documentation is very straightforward from what I've seen, and you'll find online tutorials for pretty much everything... There aren't that many tools in each program to wrap your head around, it's just that there's a lot of donkey work to be done using these tools, especially when modelling. For example it's easy to drop a sphere into the window and edit its points, but it will take some considerable time to transform said sphere into a face with features. My advice is start small, learn the basics and familiarize yourself with the program you're using, then render a simple scene. Some people never make it past the modelling stage because they obsess too much over the quality of their first models, don't fall into that trap. Make your models and move on. As you gain experience you can revisit your old scenes and refine their models, but you must have scenes to begin with. Okay, thanks. >Oh really? How about sharing some of your pieces here, I'd love to check them out. I never really finish anything, but here are some rough snippets and loops I've recorded: https://vocaroo.com/4EaQefY0Zvn https://vocaroo.com/4z9YT4vrH8q https://vocaroo.com/KTMIajqOhXv https://vocaroo.com/2YYp2FPdIOd https://vocaroo.com/1LJRuA9ReHm https://vocaroo.com/hzETMHpSInn Some of these are just MIDI files with reverb slapped on them. The last one was the most recent one I was fleshing out out of these tracks, which is why the transitions sound so rough. A few are basically memewave (including the third one, which I recorded as a test for a synth I bought), but I've been moving away from that style. I've been working on trying to learn to play parts physically rather than sequencing everything and haven't been working on creating any compositions lately, so these are kind of old. >>781 Boards of Canada are famous for preferring to work with hardware and analog instrumentation rather than doing everything in a DAW. Oftentimes they even eschew traditional forms of effects in favor of doing things on their own (in one interview they talked about creating a Leslie effect by putting a microphone in an ice cream bucket). They frequently use warped tape recordings of acoustic instruments that could be mistaken for synthesizers. I don't think you should let the fact that there are other people out there doing it let stop you. I personally plan on going in that direction once I can come up with music that's up to snuff.
>>783 I took a look at Boards of Canada. It isn't exactly 80s music, but they make good stuff nonetheless. >I don't think you should let the fact that there are other people out there doing it let stop you. I just want the music to exist so that I can listen to it. If it isn't out there, then I'll create it myself, both to listen to and to inspire others to make more. I'm curious enough to try my hand at it though. Thinking about this post on Channel4 BBS. Where is he now? Do any of you fill your life with older media? I think I'm getting there, I've never owned a car made after 1999, and use a beige CRT monitor for my PC with a Windows 95 theme. Eventually I'll get a beige computer case and a floppy disk drive. Am I autistic for all of this? Definitely.
>>783 >4EaQefY0Zvn If I didn't know you made this I would have taken it for a real 80s song, very well done. I like this piece the most. >4z9YT4vrH8q Pretty cool, the ending has some Boards of Canada vibes which makes it my favorite part. >2YYp2FPdIOd This one sounds the most "tracker-like", pretty good! The beginning immediately reminded me of a BoC song, I'm not sure which one exactly, probably "Smokes Quantity". >1LJRuA9ReHm Another nice tracker-like piece, a bit repetitive though. >hzETMHpSInn Doesn't sound too rough, maybe it needs some better leveling as some instruments are too quiet but otherwise great work. I think this piece would work better if it went more upbeat around the 0:47 mark rather than getting calmer, or at least going upbeat right after that part, if that makes sense. Overall your work is top notch, I definitely encourage you to complete your pieces and maybe compile an album/EP when you have some tracks done. No shame in sequencing by the way, but of course the more skills you have playing the instruments in real time the better. >>784 >It isn't exactly 80s music, but they make good stuff nonetheless. I don't think they meant to mimic the 80s, in fact most of their samples are from the 70s from what I remember. Their work is more along the lines of re-contextualizing old samples into something completely different with an often darker sound, you would listen to it and it feels equally modern and retro. This is most evident on their album "Geogaddi", which is by far their magnum opus, do check that out. >I just want the music to exist so that I can listen to it. If it isn't out there, then I'll create it myself, both to listen to and to inspire others to make more. I'm curious enough to try my hand at it though. That's a great motive, do try your hand at it and post results! >Thinking about this post on Channel4 BBS I disagree with the stance. Shutting yourself out of the modern world is cynical and counter-productive, not everything modern is bad, and not everything old is good either. It's okay if you're dissatisfied with the state of the world, we all are, but forcing yourself into a bubble will only harm you. The world will move on and you'll be at a disadvantage not being aware of the changes happening. Admittedly I consume a lot of old media, but I take a chance on newer media if it intrigues me, sometimes finding hidden gems. I also take advantage of new tools and technologies to make my life easier when possible... I don't keep up with the news but whenever something major happens I hear about it from the normals in my circle so I'm not completely shut off.
>>784 > Eventually I'll get a beige computer case and a floppy disk drive. nice, a buddy of mine is clearing out some stuff and told me he'd give me some old beige cases. I am building a computer with new hardware but rest assured, at some point in time I will be buying an internal 3.5" FDD adapter so that it will have a working diskette drive. I even found a site selling internal adapters for 5 1/4" floppy drives, so potentially I could have a really nice system with the capability to read and write both 3.5 and 5 1/4" floppy disks. I'll also be throwing in some blu-ray drives just because I have them. I too live in a bubble to some extent, but of course some things, through osmosis, get through the bubble and reach me. I like it this way.
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>>784 >I took a look at Boards of Canada. It isn't exactly 80s music, but they make good stuff nonetheless. Most of their inspiration comes from the hippie era through the early '80s, although focusing specifically on the '70s. >Thinking about this post on Channel4 BBS. Where is he now? Do any of you fill your life with older media? I think I'm getting there, I've never owned a car made after 1999, and use a beige CRT monitor for my PC with a Windows 95 theme. Eventually I'll get a beige computer case and a floppy disk drive. I try to keep most of today's pop culture at arm's length, but I'd never go that far. I try to have the best of both worlds by adopting any positive developments of life today while keeping everything else out. >>785 >If I didn't know you made this I would have taken it for a real 80s song, very well done. I like this piece the most. Thanks. To me it sounds a bit too much like a contemporary pastiche of '80s music, like Starforce or something. I like that synthwave stuff but am also sick of it. I am kind of proud of the way it turned out with the DX7 faux-woodwind part at the end though. >Pretty cool, the ending has some Boards of Canada vibes which makes it my favorite part. That's my favorite part too. The ending was a complete accident I discovered by reversing one of the previous sections and then assigning the part to another instrument. The chords that first show up 38 seconds in were the first part I came up with. I was trying to come up with something that sounded like smooth jazz (that Macintosh Plus track that sampled "Tar Baby" by Sade was the sound I was going for), but instead the main melody ended up sounding more like a blues or Tin Pan Alley song from the '20s or '30s. The acoustic piano sound kind of emphasizes that, although that's just a placeholder for now. >This one sounds the most "tracker-like", pretty good! The beginning immediately reminded me of a BoC song, I'm not sure which one exactly, probably "Smokes Quantity". I actually named the file "Into the Light" because it started off as an imitation of "Open the Light," but I wasn't thinking and probably confused the title with the Siouxsie and the Banshees song. This was another conscious influence: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o8pDnJBB7Vw Maybe some Dancing Fantasy too. >Another nice tracker-like piece, a bit repetitive though. For sure. The drums and bass parts are just placeholders until I can add some variation. They're just the same loop for each repeated ad nauseam. There isn't much of a main melody line yet either. The bit that you first hear at 29 seconds in was all that I came up with. >Doesn't sound too rough, maybe it needs some better leveling as some instruments are too quiet but otherwise great work. I think this piece would work better if it went more upbeat around the 0:47 mark rather than getting calmer, or at least going upbeat right after that part, if that makes sense. That was part of what I meant when I talked about being "rough." Not only the mellow part that sounds a bit out of place, but also the pretty sudden start about 18 seconds in. I usually start off by working on main chunks and then creating transition between them, but I don't even have all the main sections of that track done yet. >Overall your work is top notch, I definitely encourage you to complete your pieces and maybe compile an album/EP when you have some tracks done. No shame in sequencing by the way, but of course the more skills you have playing the instruments in real time the better. You made the Boards of Canada comparisons, and that's exactly what I plan on sounding like when I'm ready for an actual release (specifically the leaked releases and The Campfire Headphase). I've been trying to take apart their chord progressions and imitate the weird dissonant aspects of their tracks. I even ended up buying an acoustic guitar, a monosynth, and a fife to try and get that Campfire Headphase kind of sound. I don't plan on getting quite as autistic over recording techniques as they do though. Here are some more recent WIPs: https://vocaroo.com/3m1VEJxXHk3 https://vocaroo.com/dxaMZUTFkVv https://vocaroo.com/kztWXboRwcy The second one is pretty repetitive but I think it could be a nice vignette track with some more work (and a better recording; I played it by hand and cut the notes off sooner than I'd like).
>>788 >I try to have the best of both worlds by adopting any positive developments of life today while keeping everything else out. A very wise stance, I try to do the same in my life. >I like that synthwave stuff but am also sick of it Same here, but my sickness comes from most of it sounding too modern, hardly any synthwave tracks that really sound like authentic 80s songs. Yours was an exception. >specifically the leaked releases and The Campfire Headphase TCH is a great record, a close second favorite to Geogaddi for me. Haven't really checked BoC's leaked stuff aside from Old Tunes 1 & 2; the first was really good but the second was mediocre to me... I think they're musical geniuses and it's only natural that you're inspired by their work, but I urge you to also build on their style and make something unique rather than only attempting to replicate them. Just my opinion of course. And now for track reviews! >3m1VEJxXHk3 Love it. The ending may be a bit abrupt but this piece felt quite complete, if you edited the last portion to be a proper exit (maybe ending on a high note) it would be perfect. >dxaMZUTFkVv Not really that repetitive, it's quite nice. Not really sure how this one should progress though. >kztWXboRwcy A bit ominous, pretty cool. The stop in the middle was too abrupt but otherwise a solid foundation for a track, or even a loop.
Here's a little something since we have vaporwave fans on the board. As you may know vaporwave is a genre based on heavy sampling and modification, usually from the 80s-90s. However some artists have created sample-free, completely original vaporwave that sounds pretty close to something you'd hear in that era. Check these out.
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>>789 >Same here, but my sickness comes from most of it sounding too modern, hardly any synthwave tracks that really sound like authentic 80s songs. Yours was an exception. That's definitely my biggest issue with it. It's some of the only music I've liked that's come out of the 2010s, but at the same time, I'm also tired of how little it seems to draw from actual '80s music and how narrow the range of aesthetic influences on it seem to be (Blade Runner, John Carpenter movies, Tron, etc.). It's actually a pretty broad genre (just look at SAIR's funk music), but it seems like a lot of people are just trying do the same exact thing and getting the wrong impression of what actual '80s aesthetics were like. I get guys like Perturbator and Carpenter Brut trying to do their own thing and appreciate the aggressiveness of their music, but their edgy cyberpunk aesthetic isn't for me and I'd rather listen to actual '80s music (or at least something that feels closer to it). Stuff like MPM Soundtracks is a nice compromise to me. For a guy who used Synth1 for all his tracks, he did a great job of capturing the spirit of the '80s. His focus was also more melodic and I find the music to be more emotive overall than the more balls-to-the-wall artists. In one way I actually prefer the "chillwave" stuff that was popular at the beginning of the 2010s. There are definitely aspects of it I don't like (the weakling-indie-singer vocals seem to be very common, for one), but there seemed to be more of a personal focus to it rather than the "HEY, REMEMBER POP CULTURE THING FROM THE '80S?" gimmick that so much of the "retro electronic" music is based around. >TCH is a great record, a close second favorite to Geogaddi for me. Haven't really checked BoC's leaked stuff aside from Old Tunes 1 & 2; the first was really good but the second was mediocre to me... It's probably my favorite next to Music Has the Right to Children. Geogaddi I have problems getting into, but the vignettes on there are easily my favorites out of any of the albums. As for the Old Tunes stuff, it's definitely pretty inconsistent in quality. Some of my all-time favorite tracks from them were on those leaks ("5.9.78" and "Mukinabaht" come to mind), but there's also stuff that strikes me as filler. The same goes for the Random 35 Tracks Tape. These two are probably my favorites: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dbyp6gE8aMg https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jdkhi0MRR6I Overall, I think their early tracks are among the most eerie stuff they've ever done despite the releases themselves being spotty in quality. >I think they're musical geniuses and it's only natural that you're inspired by their work, but I urge you to also build on their style and make something unique rather than only attempting to replicate them. Just my opinion of course. I definitely agree. I've been wracking my brain for a while trying to think of ways I could differentiate my work from theirs aesthetically. I was thinking about maybe adding some more digital '80s and '90s touches in terms of production, but I think that would kind of take away from the organic feeling I want the music to have. I definitely plan on having prominent lo-fi string samples, but Boards of Canada already did that on "The Beach at Redpoint." Maybe I could put some electric guitar bits in certain tracks if it seems appropriate. I really don't know. One problem is that some of my influences run parallel with theirs. Genuine '70s music usually doesn't appeal to me, but I find the weirder side of that decade pretty fascinating. I remember watching shows like In Search of... and reading '70s paranormal books as a kid, for example. '70s-style typefaces and graphic design I've also started to find appealing. I really don't want to just end up being thought of as a second-rate Boards of Canada. If I end up releasing anything, I'll probably do so under several different names dependent on the style that each release is in. I could have one for mangled '90s-style computer music separate from the more organic sound I'm trying to achieve right now, for example. >Not really that repetitive, it's quite nice. Not really sure how this one should progress though. I intend to add more background textures and maybe a lead line, even if it's just a bit of noodling. >A bit ominous, pretty cool. The stop in the middle was too abrupt but otherwise a solid foundation for a track, or even a loop. Yeah, the intent was just to show the two parts I have at this point. The second part is pretty skeletal, but it gives you a picture of the foundation the final track is going to be built on. So far the atmosphere's nice and creepy, but it needs a real melody. >>790 I'll have to give a listen to these. Vaporwave has always appealed to me, but its reliance on sampling is something that I've always disliked. That PrismCorp Virtual Enterprises one I do think I heard years ago judging from the artwork.
>>791 >SAIR >MPM Great taste anon. I honestly didn't know either of these, but they sound right up my alley. >the weakling-indie-singer vocals seem to be very common You hit the nail on the head, this is exactly how I'd describe these vocals. Sadly what started as a "fresh" trend in the early 2010s mostly in indie scenes has grown into a plague in the entire music industry, not only infecting pop music but also electronic and dance music which previously made use of lush dreamy vocals, instead of this garbage. >5.9.78 That's my favorite off the album too, really wish they released it officially. >I was thinking about maybe adding some more digital '80s and '90s touches in terms of production, but I think that would kind of take away from the organic feeling I want the music to have. Not if it's on a record that embraces the artificial electronic sound, like many 90s records that experimented with it. It would be a nice contrast to the traditional/organic record (s) you'll make. Note that "electronic lo-fi" could be a thing, drawing inspiration from early digital devices and mediums. >Genuine '70s music usually doesn't appeal to me, but I find the weirder side of that decade pretty fascinating. Haven't listened to any of the weirder 70s music, ashamedly, although I really want to. I did listen to Kate Bush however so I think that's a start... The decade was definitely an interesting one, with the birth of electronic music and 3D graphics and disco it would have sure been fascinating to live through it. >I could have one for mangled '90s-style computer music separate from the more organic sound I'm trying to achieve right now, for example. If you ever decide to release the tracker pieces, consider premiering them on tracker/demo platforms like the Mod Archive, they're fairly active and you'll get noticed faster and easier. >>792 I love Eyeliner, his best for me was High Fashion Mood Music. Couldn't really get into Buy Now so I don't get all the praise that album gets.
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I gave that Timid Soul album a try and have been listening to it every day now. >>792 Haven't heard this one, but I suppose it's time to give High Fashion Mood Music a re-listen. I heard it years ago and don't remember much of it. >>793 >That's my favorite off the album too, really wish they released it officially. I'd love for them to release all their lost or unreleased music. I don't like Trans Canada Highway or Tomorrow's Harvest all that much, so I'd probably prefer that over an actual new album. They've talked about cataloguing and releasing some of it in the past, but I think the last thing they said about the topic implied they just planned on passing it on to their family. Maybe there's a good reason they seem so dissatisfied with their early work, but I'd still love be able to hear it all. >Not if it's on a record that embraces the artificial electronic sound, like many 90s records that experimented with it. It would be a nice contrast to the traditional/organic record (s) you'll make. Note that "electronic lo-fi" could be a thing, drawing inspiration from early digital devices and mediums. Yeah, for the more digital stuff I still do plan on bouncing the tracks to cassette (or maybe VHS) for a lo-fi sound. Black metal and "dungeon synth" musicians used to record digital synths that way, and it sounds nice to me. I'd go so far as to say that I'd rather listen to a "lifeless" digital synth recorded with imperfect analog technology than a pristine digital recording of a "warm" analog synth. >Haven't listened to any of the weirder 70s music, ashamedly, although I really want to. I did listen to Kate Bush however so I think that's a start... The decade was definitely an interesting one, with the birth of electronic music and 3D graphics and disco it would have sure been fascinating to live through it. In terms of the music of that period, it's mainly disco, punk, and electronic music from the final years of the decade that appeal to me. Most of the rock from that era that isn't punk doesn't interest me much unless it's drawing from it. I spend more time listening to ABBA's records than anyone else's. I'm mainly into the weird happenings and the off-kilter cultural aspects of the '70s. You had widespread interest in the occult and alternative forms of spirituality (largely due to the influence of the hippies), parapsychology and paranormal interests in general coming more into the mainstream, prominent cult activity (The People's Temple, The Children of God, Alamo Christian Foundation, etc.), Jack Chick's comics (and evangelical Christians catching the premillennialist end times fever), the Love Canal disaster, as well as some of the most infamous serial killer activity of all time taking place. >If you ever decide to release the tracker pieces, consider premiering them on tracker/demo platforms like the Mod Archive, they're fairly active and you'll get noticed faster and easier. Do they even accept MIDI files, as opposed to .mods? That's really all those were. Back when I first started learning my way around a DAW I actually considered making music files for Doom .wads.
>>793 I liked Buy Now. It reminded me of playing some sort of multimedia CD or something. I like eyeliner's other stuff too though.
>>795 >It reminded me of playing some sort of multimedia CD or something Yeah, that's the appeal to me. It sounds like the soundtrack to a lost mid 90s edutainment game.
>>794 >I gave that Timid Soul album a try and have been listening to it every day now. Glad you liked it! >but I think the last thing they said about the topic implied they just planned on passing it on to their family. Damn... They'd rather die before making an official release? That's disappointing. I liked Tomorrow's Harvest though, it's the most "cold" sounding album but it's a treat to listen to. That being said I understand that it may not be that well liked, as opposed to MHtRtC/TCH/Geogaddi. >I'd go so far as to say that I'd rather listen to a "lifeless" digital synth recorded with imperfect analog technology than a pristine digital recording of a "warm" analog synth. First is pretty much all electronic music during the 80s-90s, second is all that's been pumped out in the 10s and beyond. I'm not a music wiz but I think you could achieve a preeeetty convincing warm effect using compressors and filters... Ever tried doing anything similar? >as well as some of the most infamous serial killer activity of all time taking place. Oh yeah I've watched a movie about that once, must have been one hell of a time. >Do they even accept MIDI files, as opposed to .mods? Er, no... You could convert MIDI to MOD but the Mod Archive have a strict policy against that, so maybe you could look for platforms centered around MIDIs and post there? I must say I'm quite impressed that those are just MIDIs, they sound as rich and complex as most of the MODs I've heard. I can only imagine what you would do with an actual tracker.
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>>797 >Damn... They'd rather die before making an official release? That's disappointing. I liked Tomorrow's Harvest though, it's the most "cold" sounding album but it's a treat to listen to. That being said I understand that it may not be that well liked, as opposed to MHtRtC/TCH/Geogaddi. Yeah, although on one hand I can't say I blame them for not wanting to release the stuff they made when they were younger and don't feel is up to their own standards. It sucks that that's possibly the case, but I get it. What I will say about Tomorrow's Harvest is that I consider "Nothing is Real" among their best tracks of all time. Other than that, there are a few other parts I like, such as "Split Your Infinities," the introductory fanfare to "Gemini," the optimistic-sounding ending of "New Seeds," and the final third portion of "Palace Posy." "Split Your Infinities" in particular reminds me of the climax of an '80s "genre movie." That's no surprise considering the album is supposed to sound like an '80s sci-fi flick in the first place. "White Cyclosa" even sounds like an homage to John Harrison's Day of the Dead music, which I'm sure was intentional given that they named him as an inspiration in an interview. I think my biggest problem with the album is that to me it lacks the kind of memorable chord progressions and melodic touches that a lot of their previous work had. "Nothing is Real" is the only track, I think, that gives me the otherworldly feelings that a lot of their older music does. A lot of the youthful naivete seems gone. I'm at least glad the Sandison brothers seem to have been satisfied with the record when they were done with it though. It seems like most of the listeners liked it too, although not to the extent of their earlier recordings. >First is pretty much all electronic music during the 80s-90s, second is all that's been pumped out in the 10s and beyond. I'm not a music wiz but I think you could achieve a preeeetty convincing warm effect using compressors and filters... Ever tried doing anything similar? I'm sure you could, but I'm OCD about actually recording to tape eventually. Maybe it's just masochism on my part. >Er, no... You could convert MIDI to MOD but the Mod Archive have a strict policy against that, so maybe you could look for platforms centered around MIDIs and post there? That's what I thought. >I must say I'm quite impressed that those are just MIDIs, they sound as rich and complex as most of the MODs I've heard. I can only imagine what you would do with an actual tracker. Yeah, those tracker-sounding ones are just .mids. I start tracks with basic soundfonts or as MIDIs right from the beginning, and that might have something to do with it. It can keep you focused on the actual composition aspect of making music instead of production gimmicks. Sweetening up the sound with nicer timbres and effects and stuff can come later, when the composition itself is actually completed. At that point, you can just assign the MIDI data to a hardware synth (or a VST if you want to make things easier) and record it. I also prefer MIDIs as a way of archiving pieces considering that they're the industry standard. That way you're not locked into some proprietary format that is hardly used outside of a specific program. Maybe another reason they sound nice is the bit of reverb I slapped on there.
>>795 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UgKJr5MbXWQ New Eyeliner album came out btw. Thoughts?
>>799 just listening to the first couple seconds, this is great. I love that channel, "Vapor Memory". He's on Bitchute as well, I believe.
>>799 Sounds too dry and "metallic" in a sense, also lacking when it comes to melody. None of the tracks really grabbed my attention except Potpourri, but it's full of short pauses that it's impossible to get into its flow. I feel like Orange Milk is the graveyard label of vaporwave; a successful artist would sign with them only to produce something very underwhelming, usually as a follow-up to a successful album. For example DDS, Nmesh, and Eyeliner.
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>>779 Really, try Bryce. It's braindead easy and you can make something nice looking in a really short time (pic related within my first 2 hours of playing with it). It is pretty limited, but perfect for a start. Also freely available. https://archive.org/details/bryce4 https://archive.org/details/bryce4content
>>768 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6HCnub_OoU https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ENMpzR54us I really love the stuff that Konzept has been making for Sam Hyde recently. It's a pleasure to watch and it looks like it was taken straight out of 1999-2004, just rendered in 4K.
>>883 Thanks, I downloaded Bryce 4 a while ago but didn't see that other .iso there.
>>768 I'm not sure if Kebu tries to be /retro/, but I'd say his music is definitely a contender because he plays a lot of his songs on analog synths. Even if the style is more modern, the sound is much closer to older songs because he uses similar or sometimes even the same instruments. https://yewtu.be/watch?v=A-6XqqYWzU8 https://yewtu.be/watch?v=cH2guTTyX8s https://yewtu.be/watch?v=TRCQmNMOqUY This sounds more authentic to the 80s than a lot of synthwave songs. I still like synthwave, but a lot of songs sound more like they're invoking nostalgia rather than replicating the original nostalgic sound.
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>>883 Nice. The characteristics of that render remind me of the loading screen to an old Mac game from the mid 90s, I used to play.
>>768 Here's a silly thing. The Sentai series is currently celebrating it's 45th anniversary with a special season, so they made their giant mecha theme sound like an authentic mecha/hero song from the 70's/80's, it's wonderful https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iMFaP5NYNb8 Their other mecha theme's retro effect is more subtle but it's meant to sound like a typical sentai song from the 00's https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MUEHZHJjB7Q
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>>1478 The "Deep Blue" song sounds like 90s Trance without the annoying hi-hat loop a lot of 90s Trance incoporated. So in other words, it sounds like good late 90s Trance. The other two links are retro songs, so not really original to him. "FM-84 - Atlas" is probably the closest new original music I've heard, that could pass for a late 80s "soft rock" album. Much of Synthwave music isn't trying to accurately replicate 80s music, it's just borrowing the popular sounds from that era and combining them with new production software and tech to make original tracks. While the terms aren't concrete, Retrowave is probably a better description for new music which strives to pass as 80s synth pop music, whereas Synthwave is revisiting the 80s synth sound and evolving it.
>>2007 >Much of Synthwave music isn't trying to accurately replicate 80s music, it's just borrowing the popular sounds from that era and combining them with new production software and tech to make original tracks. While the terms aren't concrete, Retrowave is probably a better description for new music which strives to pass as 80s synth pop music, whereas Synthwave is revisiting the 80s synth sound and evolving it. That's why I prefer the earlier stuff, which leaned more toward capturing the feeling of '80s synth music without necessarily trying to sound identical.
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>>778 here. I've messed around with Bryce for a while but thought it was a bit limited, so since early June I've been trying my hand at POV-Ray, and the results have been very satisfying and authentic. There's definitely a learning curve since I was writing my files by hand, but once that was over I was quite comfortable laying scenes out in 3D space with good knowledge of geometry... On the downside the modelling options are rather limited, and the rendering speed is relatively slow because of the ray tracing, however it all adds to that authentic 80s / early 90s experience. Fun fact; POV-Ray can easily do landscapes and (indirect) terrain generation, so no need to use Bryce after all. Anybody else tried making some 3D? I'd love to hear your experiences. >>783 >>788 Did you manage to finish your tracks? Really looking forward to a complete album/EP with this material.
>>2092 >>>778 here. I've messed around with Bryce for a while but thought it was a bit limited, so since early June I've been trying my hand at POV-Ray, and the results have been very satisfying and authentic. There's definitely a learning curve since I was writing my files by hand, but once that was over I was quite comfortable laying scenes out in 3D space with good knowledge of geometry... On the downside the modelling options are rather limited, and the rendering speed is relatively slow because of the ray tracing, however it all adds to that authentic 80s / early 90s experience. Fun fact; POV-Ray can easily do landscapes and (indirect) terrain generation, so no need to use Bryce after all. So was that image made with Bryce or POV-Ray? My first guess was Bryce. Either way, it looks good. >Anybody else tried making some 3D? I'd love to hear your experiences. I messed around with Anim8or for a bit. It seemed easy enough, but I couldn't find that many resources to spoonfeed me from what I remember and didn't want to spend any more time aimlessly screwing around with it. I'll have to try this stuff again someday, although I plan on trying a different program entirely. >Did you manage to finish your tracks? Really looking forward to a complete album/EP with this material. No, my laziness is getting the best of me. Lately I've been buying new equipment and getting a nicer setup. I just got some cases for my guitar pedals and synths recently, and I should be getting another rack synth soon. More importantly, I should be getting a new sampler in the next few months. That should help with coming up with percussion faster, which I just find tedious to do other than coming up with initial rhythms. Also, I've got so many short bits and pieces made in different styles that it gets kind of overwhelming trying to decide what tracks I should work on and which ones are even worth putting any time whatsoever into refining or fleshing. I've done a lot of crap over the years. I do plan on eventually finishing up some of the tracks I posted and maybe releasing an EP or short album, but it's probably going to take a while. I've already got some acoustic guitar recording done for half a track, but it seems like it's going to be a long process overall.
>>2093 >So was that image made with Bryce or POV-Ray? My first guess was Bryce. Either way, it looks good. It was made in POV-Ray, I'm glad that you like it! >I plan on trying a different program entirely. Just go with Blender. You'll be able to model virtually anything, and render in POV-Ray or Anim8or for the retro look. I plan on learning Blender myself as a companion to POV-Ray. >my laziness is getting the best of me >I've got so many short bits and pieces made in different styles that it gets kind of overwhelming trying to decide what tracks I should work on The solution to this is easy; post your bits here and let anons decide which ones have the most potential. But you have to work on something. >I've already got some acoustic guitar recording done for half a track, but it seems like it's going to be a long process overall. No doubt. Just finish the tracks you already made good progress on, release them, then make more. Having pushed something out of the door will greatly motivate you to push out more.
>>2094 >It was made in POV-Ray, I'm glad that you like it! You really don't need Bryce if you're able to make landscape images like that. >Just go with Blender. You'll be able to model virtually anything, and render in POV-Ray or Anim8or for the retro look. I plan on learning Blender myself as a companion to POV-Ray. I read that POV-Ray isn't compatible with the latest versions of Blender. That's the only reason why I wasn't considering it as an option. This seems to imply otherwise though: https://wiki.povray.org/content/HowTo:Use_POV-Ray_with_Blender >No doubt. Just finish the tracks you already made good progress on, release them, then make more. Having pushed something out of the door will greatly motivate you to push out more. If I had something released, I might be more accepting of how long everything's taking. I don't want to be one of those people who keep pumping out music even when they've lost the creative spark they used to have. I'd rather make something and then sit on it for a while to make sure I'm satisfied with it. I plan on just focusing on a small number of pieces like the ones I posted, but it can be hard to stay focused and not start messing around with another project. In the meantime, here's a little recording I just made of Prophet patch I created earlier this year: https://vocaroo.com/1azAMgIZBWZH
>>2095 >This seems to imply otherwise though Yeah I recall stumbling upon that link but I'm not too worried about it, I'm using an older version of POV-Ray anyway so this exporter probably won't work for me OOTB. Currently I get models into POV-Ray by exporting them from Blender as .obj files, then converting them to .inc files using a homemade script. >I don't want to be one of those people who keep pumping out music even when they've lost the creative spark they used to have. You haven't published any (complete) music yet though. It's like you're worried about your brand new car breaking down due to age, before even buying it... It's been more than a year now, that's more than enough time to create some demos, sit on them for a while, revisit them for refinement, and releasing them. >I plan on just focusing on a small number of pieces like the ones I posted, but it can be hard to stay focused and not start messing around with another project. Sounds like a plan. Only you can sedate the little monkey in your head and get some work done without distractions. >1azAMgIZBWZH Very good, as always. You could introduce some instruments as the track progresses to flesh it out, but otherwise it's a solid foundation.
>>2096 >Yeah I recall stumbling upon that link but I'm not too worried about it, I'm using an older version of POV-Ray anyway so this exporter probably won't work for me OOTB. Currently I get models into POV-Ray by exporting them from Blender as .obj files, then converting them to .inc files using a homemade script. Oh, okay. I thought you meant doing everything in Blender and just exporting to POV-Ray through that. >You haven't published any (complete) music yet though. It's like you're worried about your brand new car breaking down due to age, before even buying it... It's been more than a year now, that's more than enough time to create some demos, sit on them for a while, revisit them for refinement, and releasing them. I get what you mean, but I cringe when I listen to what I made when I just started making music. I remember uploading one to Newgrounds before deleting my account and it got bad ratings. >Sounds like a plan. Only you can sedate the little monkey in your head and get some work done without distractions. It doesn't help that I have a really short attention span and am not a NEET with tons of time to spare anymore. I've decided to spend some time every day trying to work on my attention problems. >Very good, as always. You could introduce some instruments as the track progresses to flesh it out, but otherwise it's a solid foundation. I was just testing out that patch and didn't bother saving what I did. It would be easy enough to get in the same ballpark of that anyway. I'm pretty happy with that sound, since I seem to have an easier time with FM synthesis than subtractive. With the right interface, anyway. Those old '80s FM synths would have been a nightmare to program.
>>2097 >Oh, okay. I thought you meant doing everything in Blender and just exporting to POV-Ray through that. You can do that too, whatever works most comfortably for you. That's probably the optimal workflow if you're doing animation, but for now I'm just making do with my script to create static scenes. >I cringe when I listen to what I made when I just started making music Failure is necessary for improvement, your first 5/10/20 tracks are gonna be (relatively) bad, that's simply how it is. But these 20 bad tracks have to exist in the first place, so that the following 20 tracks can be better... You'll only improve by doing (i.e. releasing your music) to gain experience and outside opinions if needed. And don't let negative ratings get to your head, they will always be there and you're gonna have to learn to ignore them or take only the constructive parts of them. I know talent when I see it and you definitely have talent, so invest in it and don't waste it. >I've decided to spend some time every day trying to work on my attention problems. That's great! Post your progress here every now and then so you can stay motivated. Currently I'm looking into making a website to publish my art through, since I have a couple finished 3D scenes. It's most probably gonna be a Neocities website, although I'm kinda dreading all the HTML/CSS I'm gonna have to write.
>>2098 >Currently I'm looking into making a website to publish my art through, since I have a couple finished 3D scenes. It's most probably gonna be a Neocities website, although I'm kinda dreading all the HTML/CSS I'm gonna have to write. I was thinking about doing that at some point, but I don't know what I'd put on it.
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>>2101 >I don't know what I'd put on it. Finish _one_ song or art piece and post it, that would be a start and you'll get the ball rolling. Here's what my website looks like: https://grecomoran.neocities.org/
>>2124 >Here's what my website looks like: https://grecomoran.neocities.org/ Nice, and I'll have check up on it every so often. >Finish _one_ song or art piece and post it, that would be a start and you'll get the ball rolling. I was thinking maybe putting synth patches up for other people to use.
>>2125 >Nice, and I'll have check up on it every so often. Glad you like it! And please do, I'll be posting another render next week. >I was thinking maybe putting synth patches up for other people to use. That also works but do get some tracks out of the door too You could use the website as writing space as well, like a blog but in a much more DIY fashion... I'm planning on doing the same but after I finish publishing a couple more renders, maybe I'll even do a breakdown of a scene. We'll see.
>>2126 >but do get some tracks out of the door too I have been working on arranging one of the ones I posted before, although I seem to have hit a wall right now.
>>2127 >I seem to have hit a wall right now. How so? Maybe I can help.
>>2128 I'm having problems coming up with a bass part I actually like for a certain section of the piece. I'm just going to have to keep working at it.
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>>2129 You can let it be for a while if you're really stuck, but don't give up on it. Here's my second render (1st pic) inspired by an old 1991 POV-Ray scene (2nd pic). The website has been updated as well.
>>2131 >You can let it be for a while if you're really stuck, but don't give up on it. Right now I'm learning how to use my new sampler and also coming up with some YM2612 sounds. Coming back to that track is still a priority for me since it's so far along, and the rest of the arrangement should be pretty straightforward when I get the bassline out of the way. >Here's my second render (1st pic) inspired by an old 1991 POV-Ray scene (2nd pic). The website has been updated as well. Good job. When I saw the thumbnails, my first thought was that your version must have been a companion image from around the time of the original that I must have missed.
>>2132 >Right now I'm learning how to use my new sampler and also coming up with some YM2612 sounds. Oh nice! Any samples you can post? >my first thought was that your version must have been a companion image That's great, I was really aiming for authenticity there. I recently saw that there was interest for prints of retro CGI like this over at reddit so I'm considering tapping into that, but the question is what's the best method of receiving payment without forking over all my personal info? >inb4 nft
>>2133 >what's the best method of receiving payment without forking over all my personal info? Unless you're meeting your prospective buyer in a back alley and being paid in cash anything involving traditional money will link back to you somehow, in which case a cryptocurrency would be the solution but their usefulness is limited.
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>>2134 Well that sucks... Crypto might work but I only know about Bitcoin, so it's gonna require some research on my part. Made pic related for the holidays as something that can be printed on a postcard, turned out quite nice. Merry Christmas /retro/.
>>2131 >>2135 These are on point anon, the signature is the only way you can tell they aren't from the time period. Great work!
>>2133 >Oh nice! Any samples you can post? Alright, here's a slapdash Toaplan imitation I threw together: https://vocaroo.com/1fVXRTC46IZb It's all done on a VST, since I haven't gotten around to trying real hardware yet due to constantly making so many edits to the sounds and reevaluating them. After coming back to making YM2612 patches, I'm not used to how thin the bass is in comparison to more "professional" FM synths. On the positive side, the gritty tone lends itself nicely to mid-range basses, metallic clanks, and harsh mechanical noises. >I recently saw that there was interest for prints of retro CGI like this over at reddit so I'm considering tapping into that, but the question is what's the best method of receiving payment without forking over all my personal info? I don't know much about that. I would probably just take Monero, but the other guy's right in that it wouldn't be that useful. >>2135 Another really nice picture.
>Wrong answer or expired captcha! >Wrong answer or expired captcha! >Wrong answer or expired captcha! I can't post anything, please fix. >>2140 >>2141 Thanks anons, I'm really happy you like my renders. :-) >>2141 >1fVXRTC46IZb Sounds nice, a little chiptune-ish but I'm guessing that's intentional. This could be easily reworked into a loop for a video game level. >Monero I heard about that as well... Did you ever receive Monero? If yes how did it go? Other anons are welcome to chime in as well.
>>2143 >Sounds nice, a little chiptune-ish but I'm guessing that's intentional. This could be easily reworked into a loop for a video game level. It's really just a crappy version of something you'd hear in a Genesis shoot-'em-up game. Not something of really high quality, like a Technosoft game, but something more average like this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WTOsw5zAQTw >I heard about that as well... Did you ever receive Monero? If yes how did it go? I've never tried it and am definitely no expert on the topic, but if I got into cryptocurrency it's the one I'd use. It seems the most serious about privacy, and the government seems really upset about it. It unfortunately wouldn't surprise me if they tried to ban it entirely.
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>>768 Mike Bonnell had some good ones back in 2000
>>2148 Nice, all I remember from back then is Digital Blasphemy. It is neat to see some other similar images from around the same time.
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>>2154 I rally like this kind of image.
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>>2156 Yeah, I just wished I posted them in the right thread.
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>>2124 A little update; I finally embraced the "spartan" design and my website looks so much better now, pic related. Initially I tried a Windows 95/98 style (which you've already seen) but it got boring really quickly, especially since the style is ubiquitous on other /retro/ websites. So I changed the colors and wrestled with the html/css for a while, but nothing was working... Until I threw in the towel and removed all the styling to start over from scratch, that's when I realized the website already looks good! The layout is uncluttered, the art pops out more, and the text is perfectly readable. The cherry on top is it all looks like a genuine 1990s website (see zlib.net for an example). A few tweaks later and I was done, now I can finally focus on writing for the website rather than writing the website itself... And speaking of, I'm currently working on a mini tutorial series for POV-Ray. I'll keep you guys updated.
>>2165 I do think the more basic does look better, and it definitely seems authentic.
>>2165 That's a nice functional design, the art is the focus point as it should be. Looking forward to the tutorials!
Check this one out. This track could fit right in to a Miami Vice episode. https://invidious.osi.kr/watch?v=ua0TXQ2_tjE
>>2167 >>2168 Thank you both. I have published part 0 of the tutorial series here: https://grecomoran.neocities.org/texts/2022-02-10-pov0/index.html Unfortunately I don't go into any 3D stuff in this article, only the basics of 2D for complete beginners. The 3D stuff along with the POV-Ray code will be in part 1, which I'm yet to write... Would love to hear what you think of part 0 though, especially if you're non-technical and not good at math/geometry.
>>2203 >Would love to hear what you think of part 0 though I'm already familiar with the subject but I think you've done well to cover the basics, anyone who did 2D coordinates in school will catch on quickly, though it might not be as accessible to complete beginners. The one thing I noticed is that you didn't render the chessboard and clock in Povray lol.
>>2205 >anyone who did 2D coordinates in school will catch on quickly, though it might not be as accessible to complete beginners. That's the thing though... The main demographic for that article are the complete beginners, I was trying to simplify the subject as much as possible so anyone can get into it. How can I simplify it further? >The one thing I noticed is that you didn't render the chessboard and clock in Povray lol. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
>>2212 >How can I simplify it further? I think it's more to do with reinforcement and verbosity, i.e having redundancy in the text which reinforces and perhaps over explains the ideas you're talking about, I tried modifying the section on rectangles to illustrate what I mean: >A rectangle is made up of 4 different points connected to each other by straight lines, however each point is only connected to 2 other points. The 4 edges that make up the rectangle are divided into 2 horizontal edges and 2 vertical edges. > >We denote a rectangle by 4 pairs of coordinates in an order that creates a "closed" shape, for example (0, 2) , (0, 4) , (4, 4) , (4, 2), which gives us our bottom left, top left, top right and bottom right points respectively. > >An alternative notation for a rectangle is only 2 pairs of coordinates, such that these coordinates correspond to 2 points that are opposite to each other, for example (0, 4) , (4, 2) defines our upper left and bottom right points, so that we don't have to specify all 4 points. Notice how the x coordinate is different across the two pairs, and so is the y coordinate? We will be using this alternative notation from now on. It's not that big of a thing and I'm most likely overthinking it, chances are that anyone who wants to make retro-style renders and isn't just using Blender for that purpose probably has the right mindset anyway. Keep up the good work.
>>2214 >I think it's more to do with reinforcement and verbosity Yeah I see what you mean, and the example you provided is perfect. I'll try to be more verbose in the next article. >I'm most likely overthinking it Not at all! You're providing the exact type of feedback that I need, and you bet I'll looking forward to your feedback on the coming article too.
>>2203 I haven't finished reading it completely, but it seems pretty straightforward to me. That's saying something because I'm horrible with just about anything involving numbers.
Check out Especia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HQz4GIOB8gg Sadly they're now disbanded, but they did release some MV VHS/DVDs! I downloaded it from Jpopsuki
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YinyangGio on Twitter is someone who actually uses video programs to impact his art to look much more aesthetics. As well as imitating the imperfections really well, especially with 3D models. I actually tricked some people on discord into thinking his art was a screenshot from a show
>>2264 >YinyangGio Impressive... Are all these pressed to real tape or did he just use a filter? If it's a filter I would really really love to get my hands on it.
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After a few months I finally uploaded part 1 of the POV-Ray series, with actual 3D content this time! https://grecomoran.neocities.org/texts/2022-06-04-pov1/index.html >>2214 >>2220 I reworked part 0 somewhat since I last posted, it should be more elaborate now.
>>2386 Looking good anon! The only notes I have is that you might want to host your build (is there a reason it's an older version?) on archive.org and potentially use Wayback copies of any legacy external pages to avoid potential link rot in the future. >I reworked part 0 somewhat since I last posted, it should be more elaborate now. Yep, that's definitely improved. I'm glad the feedback was useful.
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>>2386 Just for fun, a demo render using the concepts introduced in part 1. Source: https://files.catbox.moe/akezbw.pov
>>2388 That's great to hear and thank you for the feedback! >host your build on archive.org and potentially use Wayback copies of any legacy external pages Good call, I'll start archiving my links. Although I'm reluctant to use archive.org as my primary host, because it gets slow often and sometimes has connection issues. >is there a reason it's an older version? Yes. It's because POV-Ray 2.x is a good version for beginners; it's not too bare-bones but not too full of features that it's overwhelming. With POV-Ray 3.x scene writing became full-on scripting, with the introduction of conditional statements, loops...etc which are useful no doubt but again not to a beginner (or anyone making retro CGI exclusively). There's also another (technical) reason; version 2.x is small and self-contained, so it compiles cleanly on modern systems. Starting with 3.0 there are dependencies on old libraries so compilation is a hassle, and the current 3.x releases are too big and too bloated so also a hassle to compile. >>2391 That's so cool! A Rubik's cube house made using only basic shapes, pretty creative anon. I'm overjoyed to see the tutorial being put to good use. :-) This gives me an idea... I should probably dedicate a later tutorial to building a complete scene from scratch. Nothing too fancy, just something anons can show for completing the tutorial series.
>>2392 That makes sense, I better grab 2.x to ensure scene compatibility if we're sharing pov files. >I should probably dedicate a later tutorial to building a complete scene Sounds good, reinforcing what the reader has learned is an important part of a good tutorial.
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I was curious about POVRay 2 vs 3 so I did some tests. Versions 2.2 and 3.7 were put up against the LEVEL2 scene set (found in https://www.povray.org/ftp/pub/povray/Old-Versions/Official-2.2/POVSCN.ZIP) using the following arguments: [code]povray2 +L<povray2include> +I<scene.pov> +O<scene.tga> +FT +W640 +H480 +A0.1 +V[/code] POVRay 3 was given the +MV parameter to engage backwards compatibility mode (2.2 in this case): [code]povray3 +I<scene.pov> +O<scene.tga> +FT +W640 +H480 +A0.1 +MV2.2 +V[/code] The resulting images and render times (from start of program execution to completion) were recorded and can be seen in picrel (warning: fuck hueg). What we can see is that POVRay 3's backwards compatibility is mixed, while it generally does well there's obvious and less obvious differences from the 2.2 render. In fact some images fail to render at all mainly as a result of syntax errors (though it is likely possible to fix those errors without much issue). The reason for these discrepancies appears to be a combination of tweaks over time to the default texture set as well as larger changes in the underlying render engine. More concerning is that POVRay 2 failed to produce the 'pawns' scene successfully, at least in my case segfaulting after partially rendering the image (though POVRay 3 didn't do the scene justice either). Perhaps code rot is finally catching up to the nearly 30 year old codebase? On a more positive note we can see where POVRay 3 benefits in this benchmark: the render times. In most cases (with some exceptions where 2.2 is faster, presumably due to 20 extra years of development resulting in a bit of overhead), 3.7 manages to shave fractions of a second to several seconds off of the render time, altogether resulting in almost half a minute of time saved vs 2.2. The biggest reason for this is simple: 3.7 is multi-threaded whereas 2.2 is stuck with a single core (not surprising for a program of its vintage). This is something that you'll definitely notice while iterating on a scene. In conclusion it's impressive that POVRay 3 can render projects from decades prior, even if those results are flawed. Even more impressive is that POVRay 2 works at all on modern systems, though if the raytracing community wants to preserve these legacy scenes as they were meant to be seen then 2.2's code may need some TLC.
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>>2395 Interesting tests and results, I always knew 3.x was backwards-compatible so I'm a little disappointed to see that's not entirely true. But I'm surprised that `pawns.pov` didn't render for you, it rendered fine for me just now... Can you tell me your specs? What OS are you running? Did you compile v2.2 yourself or did you use the binaries linked in the tutorial?...etc. >Even more impressive is that POVRay 2 works at all on modern systems POV-Ray was written to be portable from day one, with strict standard compliance in the code and rigorous testing on multiple systems. And that was back in the 90's when there were a gazillion different machines and operating systems! It's only natural that it works everywhere, and I'm so glad that it does. >2.2's code may need some TLC I recall seeing only a handful of warnings when compiling it so I don't know how much it can be improved, if at all. That being said it might be fun taking a look at the code.
>>2396 >Can you tell me your specs? Debian 11 x64 on a Sandy Bridge i3. Compiled from source using the machine files from the UNIX folder. After some tests the issue appears to be with +A0.1, higher values or lower resolutions render successfully (strangely the way that textures are mapped on my build is visually different for some reason). Perhaps compiler differences are the cause? What about you? Were there any particular steps you used to build (your build did work - producing identical output so there's definitely some variable in the compilation process)?
>>2397 Nice to see other anons using linux. Hope you don't mind me getting a little technical then! >Compiled from source using the machine files from the UNIX folder This is what I did, with 2 minor changes: 1. POV-Ray depends on random numbers to create patterns/textures, and by default uses the system's random number generator function. Naturally, this causes the output to be different on each system, so to remedy this problem I forced POV-Ray to always use its own "fallback" random function instead of the system one. 2. The binaries that I compiled are statically linked instead of dynamically linked, with the musl standard library instead of glibc. I'm not sure if this matters at all but I'm mentioning it regardless. >After some tests the issue appears to be with +A0.1, higher values or lower resolutions render successfully Strange... This usually happens on low memory systems (think less than a MB of RAM) which is definitely not the case here. >the way that textures are mapped on my build is visually different That's because the binary you compiled is using your system's random function, instead of POV-Ray's internal one. It's very easy to change that though, scroll down the manual to Appendix A at the bottom: https://pastebin.com/raw/vHhn3Nm2
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>>2399 Thanks anon, it was that meddling RNG all along. Kind of surprising that they used the system RNG when determinism is so beneficial for a program like this. >>2395 So, with a fully working build of POVRay 2 we can now complete the benchmark. With the addition of the pawns scene we can see that 2.2 is over a minute behind 3.7 in total render time, I think POVRay 3 definitely has a place for scene prototyping where the visual differences aren't too stark. In fact, given that textures are randomized, that may account for quite a few of the texture discrepancies we see (though there's still plenty of other issues of course).
Jason Scott, known for textfiles.com and his work at the Internet Archive, recalls what it was like to raytrace back in the day (including POVRay): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWGJPH1qbXs
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I've got a (Pacman) fever, and the only prescription, is more POVRay! Source: https://files.catbox.moe/tusbn7.zip
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>>2400 >determinism is so beneficial for a program like this Agreed. I think the 3.x series uses the internal RNG already, at least judging from a few tests I made. >I think POVRay 3 definitely has a place for scene prototyping POV-Ray 3.x has certain "quirks" that come to light when rednering 2.x scenes, so I just use POV-Ray 2.2 but with low render settings, this makes rendering quite fast and does the job very well throughout the initial scene design phase... I plan to cover render settings in a future article along with other "good practices" for saving time, but all in good time. >>2401 Great insight, and pretty much what I expected to hear. 1980s-1990s consumer PCs were extremely slow, it's a wonder any raytracing was done on them at all. One popular trick to save time was drawing the entire scene by hand on graph paper first, engineering style, then typing all the coordinates into a POV file in one go. It wasn't perfect of course, but it was a good enough hack for the time... I like to do that even today when creating my scenes, but I use "virtual" graph paper on GIMP, haha. >>2404 Beautiful. You're on a roll lately! I see you used boxes to model individual pixels, a better way to go about this is by using a height field. In brief, if you already have a pixel-perfect screenshot of the game screen you intend to model, make it black and white (black=empty & white=object) and enlarge it by x10 without interpolation, then use it as a height map. To add color, apply value propagation to the original screenshot in GIMP or similar, then use the screenshot as a texture. This may be a bit advanced so don't stress over it too much for now, I'll probably cover all this in depth later on. You did good with your scene anon.
>>2406 >I plan to cover render settings in a future article along with other "good practices" for saving time A good part to include for sure, there's no doubt countless useful tricks and tweaks. >One popular trick to save time was drawing the entire scene by hand on graph paper first Interesting, that reminds me of how game sprites were designed way back before general purpose art software. Visualization is such a key skill for this kind of thing. >I use "virtual" graph paper on GIMP, haha You're living the raytracing life! >Beautiful. You're on a roll lately! Thanks! POVRay is good fun. >a better way to go about this is by using a height field That's a great tip anon, would've saved me writing this: https://files.catbox.moe/u9m0i5.zip
>>2404 That reminds me of a video I watched last year. The channel is mildly cancerous but they usually have insightful things to say about VFX. Their goal to recreate old school Tron effects using semi-old 3D technology is genuinely pretty impressive. https://yewtu.be/watch?v=T2-yhFTCCzY The VFX for Tron were apparently done mostly using math and spreadsheets to plan out where objects would go and how they would appear on the screen.
>>2401 A prelude to that podcast written many years prior: https://web.archive.org/web/20121025031942/http://ascii.textfiles.com/archives/1240 Not much new but some nice links inside.
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>>2422 It's actually him wow
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So that's where Vigo is hiding. Source: https://files.catbox.moe/pjmie0.zip

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