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I am learning how to build shaders out of nodes in Blender Internal and I am confused about setting specular intensity and hardness.

Obviously I can just set set the intensity and hardness in the properties panel, but I would like to wire them up into my node network. I've tried both the "Material" node and the "Extended Material" node but as far as I can tell they don't have any inputs our outputs for specular intensity or hardness. What am I doing wrong?

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Try this:

For the inputs on the Material node

  1. Add >> Input >> RGB (String RGB Color Output to Color Input)

  2. Add >> Input >> Value (String Value Output to Spec Input)

  3. Add >> Input >> Value (String Value Output to DiffuseIntensity)

The combinations of these three can mimic and exceed the capabilities of the property sliders.

To Start with Set RGB to R:0.8,G:0.8, B:0.8

For Spec set the value to: 0.8

For DiffuseIntesity set the value to: 0.8

These values should get you pretty close (if not exact to the default material).


Specular Intensity

Without Nodes: Specular Intensity Controls the main "Light" bounce (Size/Intensity).

With Nodes: The Value of Spec correlates to "Specular Intensity"


To demonstrate this: with use nodes disabled, set Specular Intensity to 0.8.

Now toggle (enable / disable) use nodes to see the difference.

Now in the node editor change the Spec value to 1.5, now toggle again.


Hardness

With use node disabled set Hardness to 40.

With use nodes enabled in the node editor

Do the following:

  1. Set color (R:0.55,G:0.55,B:0.55)

  2. Set Spec: 1.8

  3. Set DiffuseIntensity: 0.7

Now Toggle

This isn't perfect but it will be close.

The whole reason for going through the exercise is to show how NON-Intuituve these parameters are to set on their own.

You can get there, but there are parameters to consider that the property sliders just make way easy for the user.

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