A comprehensive list of advanced camera tools bugs

bug

#1

After getting very frustrated and writing out reports for all the bug’s I was discovering I’ve since learned that all the bugs below can be avoided by simply using the scene manager by itself instead of the advanced camera tools.

But as the option to simply not use something really doesn’t excuse it being incredibly buggy in a £470 product, I thought I’d post this breakdown up anyway. Still, the workaround’s a massive relief as I’m still on a trial here and I don’t think I’d have been able to recommend the software to my company at all without a way to get round this plethora of bugs.

Just a friendly piece of feedback, I imagine a lot of people from 3ds Max or Blender backgrounds are going to go for the advanced camera tools before the scene manager like I did just due to name recognition. So it might not be a good idea to include it in the core package (rather then a optional extension) if it’s still a bit dodgy. Though I do appreciate that the “correct” methods of removal/renaming may be more obvious to experienced users.

Hardware/Software:
Macbook Pro (15-inch mid 2012)
OS X Yosemite 10.10.5, 64-bit
SketchUpPro2015 Version 15.3.329 (Trial), Mac, 64-bit

Bug 1#: Camera renaming simply doesn’t work

To repeat this bug:

  1. Create a new model with simple template - meters.
  2. Click View -> Tool Palettes -> Advanced Camera Tools
  3. Add a new camera
  4. Exit camera view via right click -> done.
  5. Add a second camera
  6. Attempt to rename the second camera via right clicking on its tab and clicking rename.
  7. Click the first camera’s tab or open the scene manager.
  8. Notice that the second camera’s name returns to its original.
  9. Open the scene manager and attempt to change the second camera’s name again, this time via the scene manager window.
  10. Note the name has changed and remains so even if you click another camera and be lulled into a false sense of security.
  11. Save.
  12. Quit and re-load.
  13. Notice that you now have three camera tabs, two with original names and one with the new name. The relationship between the second camera and its two tabs is… interesting from this point on.

Bug 2#: Camera deletion via right clicking the camera tabs isn’t permanent (right clicking the actual camera in scene and deleting does however work)

To repeat this bug:

  1. Create a new model with simple template - meters.
  2. Click View -> Tool Palettes -> Advanced Camera Tools.
  3. Add a new camera.
  4. Exit camera view via right click -> done.
  5. Add a second camera.
  6. Delete the second camera via right clicking its tab and clicking delete.
  7. Save.
  8. Quit and re-load.
  9. Notice that the second camera has returned from the grave.

Bug 3#: Adding cameras triggers clipping plane known issue described here: http://help.sketchup.com/en/article/36261, fixes noted there do not solve the issue. Seems as if the camera frustum volumes might be registering as distant geometry or something.

To repeat this bug:

  1. Create a new model with simple template - meters.
  2. Create a flat plane of 294.05m x 195.81m.
  3. Click View -> Tool Palettes -> Advanced Camera Tools.
  4. Add a new camera whilst looking down at around a 45-degree angle with the whole plane in shot.
  5. Exit camera view via right click -> done.
  6. Add a new camera whilst being very close to the plane and looking across it as if it was the ground and the cameraman is standing on it. But not so close that any clipping already occurs.
  7. Exit camera view via right click -> done.
  8. Add progressively more camera’s that are pointing at the plane from different angles and positions, some on/over it, others outside it.
  9. Notice how, after a point (normally around 4/5 cameras), every camera you add causes camera 2 to suffer worse and worse clipping plane issues.

#2

Thanks for posting this Foemass. I’ve been tearing my hair out with the camera plane issues caused by FOV volumes in ACT. I’ve tried many workarounds and take great care to always create a camera type (rather than the default window size) and lock it on the first edit. I thought that was the answer, but recently had a model with 5 or 6 cameras and the clipping started up again.

I too use Blender on a regular basis and like to set my SU scenes with ACT so the scenes translate easily to Blender. Unfortunately, I waste so much time deleting FOV volumes and reshooting scenes that it’s actually more productive to export and setup cameras in Blender.

Hopefully these bugs get worked out. ACT could be a very useful tool.