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Glowing 3D marker symbols

October 04 2011 | 3 comments
Categories: 3D Mapping, Symbology

Is there any way to get the white glow around 3D marker symbols, such as trees and cars to go away in ArcScene?

Mapping Center Answer:

This effect is also known as the "halo".

The problem is due to partially transparent textures within the symbol, where the background color kind of “blasts through” surrounding features to add a glow or halo around the symbol.  The good news is that the effect can be reduced by adjusting the "Minimum transparency threshold" slider on the Rendering tab of the Layer Properties dialog.  Zoom to a viewing position within the document in which you see the effect, then adjust the slider until you get the desired mix of transparency and lack of halo.

inconsistent halo posted by Jennifer Horsman on Feb 21 2014 2:22PM
I have found that this halo effect is inconsistent. For example, I can add a TIN to ArcScene, then add a point layer and symbolize it with 3D trees, applying base heights from the TIN (using the original path to the dataset, not the layer), and everything will look just fine and appear to be working as expected. Then, I save the scene, close ArcScene, and open it again with the same scene, and suddenly the halos appear.

I have been able to get the halos to disappear by changing the tree symbols and then changing back again. But, this does not always work. It seems the more layers I have in the scene, even if they are turned off, the less likely I am able to remove the halos.

And then, I added another TIN and the TIN that was already in there suddenly became transparent, even when I turned off the other TIN layer. I turned off the elevation symbology for the TIN and turned it back on again and that worked for a while to return it to "normal". However, I added more layers and started having even more problems. Adjusting the minimum transparency threshold slider for the TIN worked, in this case. But it does not help the trees at all.

I am putting so many layers in the scene because I wish to create an animation. This behavior is frustrating, to say the least!
Try using a 3D model posted by Aileen Buckley on Mar 10 2014 3:58PM
The halos from the semi-transparent T-trees should be handled the way we described above. We've not heard someone say that "the settings don't stick" before...

If you really are in a no-progress state, you could look at pulling down a "real" 3D model (instead of the t-tree) and then use that in your scene as a custom marker symbol. Depending upon the number of features, performance can still be OK.

Here is a link to an Esri-owned COLLADA example (Field Elm), if you want to try it out: http://downloads2.esri.com/MappingCenter2007/ask/Field_Elm.zip. This model was made by EON Software and will be available as a core Esri ArcGIS style in summer this year.
Just remembered... posted by Aileen Buckley on Mar 10 2014 4:37PM
Just realized that the model I attached earlier ALSO has the semi-transparent textures on it. This might not fully fix your problem after all... You might still need to chase up a DAE tree (e.g., on the Trimble warehouse) with no texture tricks embedded...

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