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HippoDasTamus

Why is there no search function in the material manager?

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Hi! 

There is one missing feature in C4D that strikes me as really odd, because of it's absolute banality - 

in almost every manager inside of C4D is a search function implemented to find whatever you want quickly, even in the timeline and the attributes windows, where I really rarely have to search anything. For some weird reason though, there is no such search function within the material manager, where I really often have to find a specific material. I work around this by using layers, select first active material etc., but I just don't get why that function is missing there in the first place? Does anybody know of a plugin/ script that is capable of searching materials or does anyone use other methods to search? 

And in case anyone from MAXON is stumbling upon this, it would be a great little feature to add for efficiency 🙂

 

Best regards!

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Dude - have you not found the Project asset manager ? That has full search functions for textures and whatnot, but there are also some basic 'finder' items built into the material manager as well, just not a full search. Have to confess, in 10 years+ of using this app, I have never needed to search materials, so hadn't really considered it a  'missing' thing...

 

CBR

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20 minutes ago, Cerbera said:

Dude - have you not found the Project asset manager ?

In what way does the Asset Inspector help me find a material? As far as I ever found out, it's for managing external images (and other files) that are referenced by C4D. It will not list materials themselves, nor help filter them?

 

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Just now, Cairyn said:

In what way does the Asset Inspector help me find a material?

By listing any textures / bitmaps that might be in them ? I did specify textures in the very next sentence, which is related to what he asked if not the actual thing, which I addressed further down...

 

CBR

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8 minutes ago, Cerbera said:

By listing any textures / bitmaps that might be in them ? I did specify textures in the very next sentence, which is related to what he asked if not the actual thing, which I addressed further down...

You changed your post... I quoted it in full at the time when I read it. I tried to find whether I have overlooked something in the Asset Inspector that might help listing/filtering/searching materials, but there isn't apparently, so the point is moot.

 

Personally, I had the idea of implementing a filter before... for example, when I have to work with different render engines and create materials that have the engine as suffix (like "_SR" for standard renderer). Searching by name would also have come handy occasionally.

 

But I admit, I don't know the "best" way to sort/filter materials. There are numerous criteria (some of which are addressed in the Material Manager, yes), and the only simple way to implement a search function is by name, so one has to encode the criteria in the material name. Not an issue per se, but I do wonder - how do other users handle their materials per scene, and has anyone brought the concept to its knees already by having hundreds or thousands of materials?

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  • Author of the topic Posted

    i know the Project Asset manager, but as Cairyn said, it does not filter materials in the manager from where you could apply them to objects. Also I usually use the TX manager of C4DtoA because it is much better shaped.

    I would also like to be able to sort my materials into specific renderer materials, standard materials, animated materials for example. In a very large scene with 200 materials per material layer it quickly gets umcomfortable to move in the material manager and the project asset manager is no help here. 

    What I do mostly is sorting the materials alphabetically and then slowly scrolling through while singing the ABC song in my head, which is a bit annoying. 

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  • Author of the topic Posted

    i have to admit that I don't need to search for a specific material very often as well, but when I do it is not very streamlined, compared to the rest of the UI of C4D 

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    Meh. So I sat down and wrote a few quick scripts for material management. The first one is here, have it for free:

    import c4d
    from c4d import gui
    
    def main():
        name = ""
        search = c4d.gui.RenameDialog(name)
        if search == None: return
        search = search.lower()
        mat = doc.GetFirstMaterial()
        while mat != None:
            if search in mat.GetName().lower():
                print "Found!"
                doc.SetActiveMaterial(mat)
                doc.GetActiveMaterial() # Should be called afterward to update the internal selection state.
                c4d.CallCommand(16297) # Find first active material
                c4d.EventAdd()
                return
            mat = mat.GetNext()
    
    if __name__=='__main__':
        main()

    This one shows a dialog to enter a (partial) name string. The script will then select the first material whose name contains the string (case-insensitive) and scrolls to that material in the material manager.

    (Also attached as file as we know that copy&paste sometimes works weirdly.)

     

    The other three are for my Patrons on Patreon here:

    https://www.patreon.com/posts/script-club-1-13-37630995

    They contain one script to select all materials fitting the search string, one script to filter all materials fitting the search string (making all others invisible), and one script that makes all materials visible again. I have given them just a quick test, so if there is any trouble, notify me.

    Material_Search_ByName.py

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  • Author of the topic Posted

    Wow that looks promising, thank you very much! I will definitely try it out -  also the whole Script Club page looks very interesting 🙂

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    1 hour ago, HippoDasTamus said:

    I would also like to be able to sort my materials into specific renderer materials, standard materials, animated materials for example.

     

    I take it you found material layers ?  That's how I separate mine into groups like that... despite what I said, and Cairyns helpful script, I do agree with you that there should be a full search there as well - if for nothing else than consistency...

     

    CBR

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