Getting text to be clear is an obvious problem for people when using Papervision, as it pops up on the list in a new thread every week or so. I’ve had this demo for a while now, but between work, writing, and trying to find a life outside my computer, I haven’t taken the the time to post the source or explain how you can easily clear up your text.
In this demo, I take a couple parameters into account, to see how they affect text clarity:
- Smoothing : If the material uses smoothing or not
- Transparency : If the material is transparent
- Anti-Aliasing : Normal or Advanced aliasing on the text field.
- Bitmap Caching : Set the cacheAsBitmap property or not
- Size : How large the text field (and parent movieclip) is
Taking these things into account, you can see in the demo above what really makes the difference. The most obvious: SIZE. Use bigger textfields! This will get you the clearest text no matter what. The difference is quite obvious between the 100 and 300 pixel textfields. I personally can’t see much change from 300 to 500, but I might be overlooking something. Remember that size is a trade off with papervision: the larger your movieclip, the longer it takes to render. Try to find the perfect balance of size (quality) and speed for your application.
Smoothing makes a significant difference. If you want to clean up your text, turn on smoothing. The sister parameter to smoothing should always be tiled, to prevent any lockups at high angles.
Transparency helps remove artifacts from the textfield. I’m not sure what actually causes the faces to show through with dynamic text, but transparency removes them. For better performance however, set cacheAsBitmap to true – as this will also remove the artifacts, but not add additional overhead during rendering. An interesting observation: these artifacts also disappear if you add any other content to the stage – I imagine things are cached to deal with other display objects. So a possible workaround for both transparency and cacheAsBitmap is to simply add a little invisible clip onto the stage.
Anti-Aliasing seemed to do absolutely nothing. Set it to advanced if you feel like it, but unless I’m blind I don’t see any advantage to having it on.
And thats about it! Hope it helps some of you with your text field woes.