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I am testing a complex material I created to simulate lunar regolith (terrain). I tested the material using a simple, undivided plane. I then applied the material to an object imported as a Wavefront OBJ (which is what I want to use for the final render).

Problem: The material looks significantly different (smoother) when applied to the terrain object. I have never seen this before. How do I make the material look the way it does when applied to the plane?

I cannot see any difference between the plane and terrain object; neither the plane nor the object have any modifiers. Same material, different results. Any suggestions? Thanks. Blender 3.6, Cycles, Windows 11

enter image description here

plane and object blend file

enter image description here

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    $\begingroup$ Hello could you please share your file (only the plane and the object) $\endgroup$
    – moonboots
    Oct 26, 2023 at 18:49
  • $\begingroup$ Hi @moonboots. Thank you for your response. I have added a link the file in the OP. $\endgroup$
    – WilburPost
    Oct 26, 2023 at 22:06
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    $\begingroup$ If moonboots is on the right track in his answer, you might also consider switching on the 'Experimental' checkbox of Cycles, and using Adaptive Subdivision $\endgroup$
    – Robin Betts
    Oct 27, 2023 at 7:37
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    $\begingroup$ Also, the material uses UVs coordinates, so you can't expect the same result from one mesh to another as they don't have the same UVs. If your shader is a repeatable texture, consider either playing with the Mapping Node's scale input, or using the Generated texture coordinates. $\endgroup$
    – Lauloque
    Oct 27, 2023 at 15:50

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Your problem is consistent with an object scale issue.

Try to apply the scale of your imported terrain object. Ctrl + A then choose Scale.

Often imported models come in with a scale that is too big or small by a few orders of magnitude.

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  • $\begingroup$ Thank you everybody for your suggestions! Ctrl+A Scale on the terrain object made a huge improvement (I added a screenshot of the result). The object comes from a third-party app called Daylon Leveller, and then I Decimated it in Blender with a ratio of 0.1. I also included a snapshot of the regolith material I cobbled together (it has some proprietary nodes I can't share). Trying to combine texture map footprints with procedural regolith. $\endgroup$
    – WilburPost
    Oct 27, 2023 at 13:57
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One of your object is subdivided, the other is not, the Displacement node can only work on subdivided mesh. Also, you didn't share the images but there seems to be several problems here like nothing plugged into the Height input of a Bump node, or 2 Displacement nodes plugged into a Mix (not sure that it will work correctly, you need to plug the images into a Color Mix, then plug the Color Mix into the Displacement that is plugged into the Output).

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