XMB Waves and particles steering by DS3 research

Discussion in 'XMB Modifications' started by kozarovv, Apr 14, 2017.

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    kozarovv

    kozarovv Super Moderator

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    Just want to add some fun fact here as a small caution to some posts here.
    Idle is not constant state on PS3. You can't compare xmb idle on different setups. Let me explain that. XMB wave is not so lite for Cell/RSX. Important note: All data is my old measurements, so is only one person test. Tests was made in early 2016 or late 2015 in 19c room, with fan set to 32% on CECH-210X. All temp are measured using webman lite (current for that time, can't recall version) with disabled all possible functions, after 30 minutes of idling in XMB (30 minutes for every possibility, not at once).

    • XMB with Original wave mode - is most heavy non-modded option. My temps in that mode was 59c (fun fact 2: You know that you can move that small stars in xmb by shaking controller?)
    • XMB with Classic wave mode - is heavy, almost unnoticeable difference on temps. 58-59c.
    • XMB with Custom background image - Lightest available option, PS3 don't need to draw wave so my temps was 54-56c
    • XMB with custom wave? - 57 to even 62c in some cases. Lightest was just "one liners", most heavy was waves in "Lighting" shapes.
    • Multiman in MMOS - 54c (!)

    Like you can see, idle is not true idle on PS3. :) Problem is probably in solutions made by $ony in XMB. Instead of made some static graphics they decided to use parameters to real time draw wave. Not best idea, but also not worst i ever seen. ;)

    PS. Some solder components/pastes/bga's are oxidating even in 60c, until we don't know true ingredients of bga used by $ony after RoHS directive. We can't truly say that some temperature is safe or not.
     
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    sandungas

    sandungas Developer

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    I noticed it too, the wave is heavy but i never meassured it, interesting 4ºC of difference... and up to 3 or 4 more incase of using a very complex custom wave
    Thats a lot to be honest, but well, i still have it enabled, i like the wave and sparks :)
    I guess are so heavy because is doing lot of maths operations so is "CPU intensive"... but this is just speculation

    I also noticed the interaction between the cursor and particles
    And the wave interacts too with the cursor btw, is hard to notice because takes more time but it moves laterally towards the same direction you moved the cursor for the last time, also, the whole "particle field" follows this animation too

    All is made with settings in the .MNU files inside http://www.psdevwiki.com/ps3/Lines.qrc
    This settings seems related, in:

    PARTICLES.mnu
    friction:float:0.030551
    wind dir x:float:0.340188
    wind dir y:float:0
    wind dir z:float:0.35

    PARTICLES_UI.mnu
    icon wind:float:11.3877
    icon wind scl x:float:0
    icon wind scl y:float:1

    Actually... now im thinking in (or reminding it because it seems i wrote it in wiki at some point and forgot) it looks like all the values from PARTICLES_UI.mnu are separated there because are related with that "interactions" between the particles and the user (by doing things in the dualshock)... this is why the file is named "UI"

    Edit:
    And i just noticed inside PARTICLES_UI.mnu there are lot of settings that includes the name "shake" with variants for axis, g (gravity), rotation, and things that seems related with the positional sensors of the dualshock (the gyroscope and accelerometer)... hmmm
    I bet there are animations when shaking it, lol... never noticed before (and could not imagine)
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2017
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    kozarovv

    kozarovv Super Moderator

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    Yes, probably this is the case.

    All that was measured on 45/40nm PS3, on earlier models this can be even more noticeable difference. I Found that old results while "cleaning" my desktop PC. :)

    Didn't noticed that, I will check this today.

    That make sense. Looks like this is file with all "shaking" effects. BTW. $ony is crazy, look at all those values. All that just to make movable particles by user input. :)
     
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    pinky

    pinky Bitsiboo's Other Half Developer

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    that's also y multiplats almost always perform better on the 360. there's not metadata indexer on the system though, so that causes a delay in scanning the hdd on the 360. with project scorpio's specs having been released, it looks like that again. they blow the ps4 pro out of the water, but I can just imagine the cost of the thing. that's the xbox one I'll be buying once I get some money. for now, it's just amiibos. god I wish I could an nes classic too considering it's being discontinued.
     
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    sandungas

    sandungas Developer

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    After writing that mesage i was several minutes doing (partially stupid) things with the dualshock while looking at the settings to try to make sense of them
    And yes, all that "shake" settings are related with sensors, it detects the horizontal movements (the sparks field is like "pushed" laterally)
    And if you move the dualshock up and down for several seconds (this needs to be made for several seconds) the sparks are like "expanded" and increases the randomness

    I even spent some time flipping back the dualshock with the 2 hands, one loop with each hand, like doing an infinite "backflip"... and it seems the wave reacts to it... when doing that the wave starts "swirling" like a corkscrew... this effect is very small though

    Doing the flip in opposite direction (infinite frontflips) doesnt makes any effect though

    ------------------------
    All this looks a bit like an "easter egg" lol
    I know, not exactlly an easter egg... but well... how could be this qualifyed ?... i didnt have a PS3 until 2010 or so but i seriouslly doubt sony explained how works any of this ever
    And all this effects are barelly notable... are just very small details... eventually some users could realize about one (or a couple) of the animation effects, but not all them (i still dont get it by looking at the settings)

    ------------------------
    Btw... when looking at the settings, and thinking in what we was talking about the performance i realized there are a few that can be disabled to make it lighter

    In the file HDR.mnu
    ENABLED:int:1
    This is the value by default... and all the other settings inside HDR.mnu are dependant of it
    In other words... by changing that value to 0 we can disable completlly all HDR image filter effects (and yes, this HDR is the same image technique used in PS4 pro)

    In PARTICLES_UI.mnu
    brownian:float:0.60
    Brownian is this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brownian_motion
    The algorithm needed to calculate the "collisions" of particles should include the position of all (or a lot of the surroundings) particles
    This brownian effect is heavy maths... so i think is other of the things that could be disabled, in the original animation i dont see too much use of it so initially i think disabling it is not going to make much change visually (thought maybe the particle field will become like something like the star wars intro)

    --------------------------------
    Overall... i like that interaction effects between dualshock and particles/waves... but personally i would increase some of "shaking" ones because i liked them



    Edit:
    I updated the wiki page about the PARTICLES_UI.mnu to add what we has been talking about
    http://www.psdevwiki.com/ps3/Lines.qrc#PARTICLES_UI.mnu
     
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2017
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    pinky

    pinky Bitsiboo's Other Half Developer

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    they really wasted a lot of time on that wave. 2 elfs, countless mnu's, dds, and tga's. I can do the same on the 360 with fakeanim and it can last as long as I want and be what I want since it uses wmv files. u can even make a collection of them in the media folder. that replaces both the coldboot and the wave and looks better than both. neither has to be in the flash either.
     
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    sandungas

    sandungas Developer

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    Well, an animation made with code is going to be much smaller than a video, for the PS3 wave and sparks it seems they exceeded a bit/lot in complexity but eventually it become a characteristique sign, so from the point of view of marketing i think it was a good decission
    From the point of view of an user i would have reduced the complexity a bit though... i like visual eyecandy but up to the point where it starts conflicting with performance
    In general... my preferences are something like 70% performance and 30% eyecandy

    The reason why the background/hdr/lines/particles has so many setting files is because are used for diferent enviroments. At any point of the PS3 runtime there are only 5 of those files loaded, and the PS3 has around 18 different enviroments, so the total of files is huge but only few of them are loaded for every enviroment
    This is a nice feature, allows them to change some settings for every enviroment
    For us that pretends to modify them is a pita though
     
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    kozarovv

    kozarovv Super Moderator

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    Hehe, now I understand why people are saying that learning is fun. ;) Maybe editing those values can make wave more movable.

    Yes, is hard to explain why. :) Is like $ony want to do something with that, maybe to show sixaxis "power", but later when everything was ready they decided to leave it inside firmware, but not noticing anyone about it. This was probably part of something bigger that $ony want to show how powerful solutions PS3 can handle, and use.
    Nice :)

    Just tested that moving particles in xmb work also using Move stick. If anyone is curious about that. Yes they are. :) Even better, is easier to make some nice effects with move (specially when is attached to your hand). :) Lol, no idea why $ony did it but I found it fun. :)
     
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    kozarovv

    kozarovv Super Moderator

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    Moved all posts to new thread, btw think what can be done by using custom waves! Can we made our own particles? Something like interactive custom themes?
     
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    Berion

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    I hate many Sony solutions, but this one... It's just genial! I really love wave in PS3 (without stars). Also icon are blended to those waves (original, not those from custom themes). That's true it's heavy solution, maybe it's bad design as menu (in efficiency) but it's no doubt ;] beautiful. Personally I don't care how much W/h console use or how warm it is under BGA - we are there only for few seconds and those seconds should impressing the user. He should feel that this is not an ordinary machine. When I see some poor designed menu, I feel then that whole console is junk. When I see good design, I feel that someone made this special for me. And this part of PS3 is absolutely perfect in my opinion.
     
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    sandungas

    sandungas Developer

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    Hehehe, at this point im not so sure if the wave "twists" when rotating the dualshock, the reason why i tryed to make flips is because there are some value names that contains the word rot... so i thought could be "rotation", but now thinking in it i have doubts
    Mostlly because every animation is intended for being applyed to the most common "human" movements
    Like the "dshake x coeff"... this one happens very frequentlly, like when you let the dualshock in a table (to do other things, like going to the fridge for a drink or to the bath, or whatever) when you return and grab the dualschock from the table usually you do a lateral move in x axis... and the sparks are moved laterally

    This is what makes me think the "rot" maybe is not rotation but other thing (maybe is a weird name of an image techniche or an acronym)... the point is not normal to make rotations, we are limited by our articulations, only rotations you can do with the dualshock in a hand is 90º (rotating it up or down) but this is not normal at all, and the other rotation is what i did with the "frontflips" and "backflips" but this is even less common

    So im not really sure if what i explained from my tests shaking the dualshock is much accurate XD
    Actually, at this point i dont think moving the dualshock up and down does anything (doesnt seems to be a value for "dshake y coeff")
    What i think that happens when you try to move dualshock up and down the directions are not perfect so additionally to the up/down sensors you are activating more directions, also the "g force" maybe too... and the combination of all this small values is what makes the particles spread more random


    Probably, maybe started as one of those "demo experiments" they uses to do, this time with the sisaxix when they was hyped with it at beginning XD

    I think part of this was added in firmware 2.00 , not specifically the particles we was talking about, but stuff related like the HDR effects, themes support, etc... around that firmware the .QRC files was updated and increased in size

    I thought in move, not tryed but it should be more precise, hehehe
    With the dualshock is harder to make perfect figures in the air, lol

    Also, have you noticed there is only one setting for rshake ? (but a lot for dshake)
    I wonder if this "r" means "remote controller"... i mean... the official "PS3 bluray remote controller"
    A standard TV remote doesnt have sisaxis sensors... but maybe the official one has it. In the same way the move controller has a chip inside that is exactlly like the chip inside the dualshock3... that remote controller could have that chip too and additional sensors
    I would not bet in this though... is not probable but well... just an idea

    I think the icon color blending (and lot others elements of xmb are also blended, like stuff in the side menu) i think is a consequence of the HDR.mnu settings, maybe only a part of it but im pretty sure HDR is involved
    I never tryed any experiment with ths though but an easy way to verify it is by disabling HDR completlly as i explained in a message before (there is an option for it enabled by default). It seems HDR affects all the others (background/line/particles)

    I was thinking what things could be made with the .elf (there are 2, one for the wave and another for the particles)
    My favourite idea (i was thinking about this lot of time ago) is to replace one of them by a "plugin manager", is not so easy because the point is to make some visual menu overlapped in main XMB with a list of the plugins, and a selector to turn them on/off. But the basis of this idea comes because the official wave/sparks are displaying stuff in xmb (so that .elfs have access to display buffer, maybe even has a display buffer reserved for them), and both wave/sparks can interact with the dualshock (so the .elfs has access to dualschok outputs)... this are the 2 basic things needed to make a "plugin manager" menu and official firmware allows that .elfs to use them :)

    But returning to what you said... there is a way to "nuke" one (or both) of the .elfs... by compiling it from scratch with no functions in it
    Just the header "main void()" and thats all, this way the .elf can be loaded (official firmware is going to try to load it so it needs to be there and needs to be valid code)
    If this im saying works (i never tryed, im just speculating) you could replace the sparks .elf by this dummy to keep only the wave

    Good idea :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2017
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    sp193

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    Thanks for bringing up this topic. I was wondering how they drew the boot screen (whether it was done mathematically in software or is a static animation file). The wiki mentions the file's name, which suggests the type of wave it is (Spline wavelet).
     
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    DeViL303

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    Hey I found some info on this, so not a complete easter egg even though they never explained it thoroughly. They introduced it in FW 3.00 along with dynamic themes, So I suppose it was a way to showcase that new feature. The same values that interacts with the sparkles probably effect some dynamic themes so we could maybe exaggerate the effects?

     
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    kozarovv

    kozarovv Super Moderator

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    Awesome find!! Source here: http://blog.us.playstation.com/2009...t-dynamic-themes-our-favorite-little-tikiman/ ?
     
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    DeViL303

    DeViL303 Developer

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    Yeah that's the source. Meant to post that too.
     
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    sandungas

    sandungas Developer

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    Yep, the Q-Games guys, they was working with sony in the PS3 XMB, it was noted here in wiki at top of the page as something generic for the description
    http://www.psdevwiki.com/ps3/Qt_Resource_Container_(QRC)
    They even made that "visualizer" app later with some visual effects (pointless app for the users, but can be considered part of the experimental stuff sony likes to do sometimes)

    Thx for the tip, i cant confirm if this is exactlly what they used but it looks you are on the good track
    I added a couple of links to wikipedia on psdevwiki about it (mostlly to not forget it)
     
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