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Table of contents
1.
Introduction
2.
3D Mesh 
2.1.
Meshes in Depth
3.
Types of Mesh
4.
Polygons
5.
High vs Low poly in 3D Mesh and polygons
5.1.
Following are five main differences between High and Low poly
5.1.1.
The Complexity of the Geometry
5.1.2.
Static and Motion Usage
5.1.3.
Texture Quality
5.1.4.
Processing/Rendering Time
5.1.5.
Detalization
6.
Frequently Asked Questions
6.1.
How are polygon meshes used in 3D Modelling?
6.2.
What are polygons?
6.3.
What shapes are used to model meshes?
7.
Conclusion 
Last Updated: Mar 27, 2024

3D Mesh and polygons

Author Tarun Singh
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Introduction

In this blog, we will discuss the 3D Mesh and polygons. This blog is sequentially designed for better understanding covering key points and insights into topics such as Mesh and Mesh types and Polygons. Moving further, we will see differences between high and low poly. Reading this blog will make understanding the 3D Mesh and polygons easy, so let's get started with 3D Mesh and polygons.

3D Mesh 

A polygon mesh is a collection of vertices, edges, and faces that make up a 3D object in computer graphics. Whether it's for a 3D animated film, advertisement, or video game, a polygon mesh creates the shape and contour of every 3D character and object. While the concept may appear intimidating, the geometry of a polygon mesh is simple to grasp.

Large forms are made up of smaller, interconnected planes that fit together like a 3D jigsaw puzzle. 3D mesh is an important and integral part of 3D Mesh and polygons.

The x, y, and z coordinates are stored in each vertex of the polygon mesh. 

The rendering engine then uses surface information on each face of that polygon to calculate lightning and shadows (among other things).

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Meshes in Depth

Moving on further in this blog on 3D Mesh and polygons we will see Mesh in detail. The goal behind modeling a polygon mesh is to use lines and polygons to simulate the 3D surface of anything. Artists can then increase the number of vertices in the Mesh to add as much detail as possible. The computer's capabilities are the sole constraint. Blender, Maya, and 3ds Max are among the most popular programs. Modeling, texturing, rigging, and animating 3D meshes are all possible with these programs.

A "thin" mesh can be made with just one plane. Most meshes are represented as polygonal quads—four connected vertices—that the computer splits into triangles for optimization.

There are two sides to every polygon mesh face: a front face and a back face.

The front face is needed to determine the Mesh's surface angle, whereas the back face is intended to be hidden from view.

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Types of Mesh

Knowing types of mesh will help you grasp the knowledge of 3D Mesh and polygons in depth. The following Image depicts some types of Mesh:

1-D Mesh
The division of a member into many segments is known as 1D element meshing. While this does not alter the overall outcome, more segments allow for a smoother and better display of the results.

2-D Mesh
2-D mesh is also known as Shell mesh it depicts model parts that are two-dimensional such as sheets of metal, hollow plastic and etc.

3-D Mesh
A 3D mesh is the structural framework of a polygon-based 3D model. To form shapes with height, breadth, and depth, 3D meshes use reference points on the X, Y, and Z axes.

Polygons

After mesh polygons are the most important part of 3D Mesh and polygons. Polygons Are Basic Geometry Components of a 3D Model. Straight edges and vertices make up the polygon geometry. A face is a three-sided geometric figure, often known as a "triangular polygon," that has been produced. There are also "quads" with four sides and "n-gones" with multiple vertices. Each polygon is joined to other polygons to form a polygonal mesh, which is essentially a three-dimensional model. 

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With Polygon 3D Modeling, CG Artists Can Create Any Shape. Experts in computer graphics attempt to avoid creating meshes with billions of polygons. Instead, they use fewer polygons to construct detailed 3D products. Lesser amount ensures no polygon lumps or knots in the Mesh for 3D modelers. Any errors committed during the 3D modeling stage may show up later in 3D rendering; therefore, CG artists attempt to keep the geometry simple.

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Each Polygon and Polygon Mesh Are Easily Modifiable. 3D modelers can continue to manipulate the Mesh's polygons after being completed. 3D modelers can sculpt any shape from polygons by adjusting the vertices. To construct items with proper proportions, polygonal modeling requires skills and experience.

CG Artists Often Do Retopology to Optimize 3D Models. Retopology is a polygonal object optimization technique that helps CG artists minimize the number of polygons in a mesh and turn high-poly objects into low-poly ones. They will be able to convert high-quality 3D models to gaming engines, applications, and 3D product configurators.

High vs Low poly in 3D Mesh and polygons

Till now in this blog of 3D Mesh and polygons we have seen Mesh and Polygons in detail, now we will see high vs low poly. For some activities, high-poly models are required, while low-poly models are necessary for others. But, let's first understand the primary differences between high and low poly and where they are used. Both words are derived from polygon modeling, which is creating 3D models using polygons. These are little closed geometric shapes merged into a single mesh that serves as a 3D object's surface. As a result, high-poly models have a lot of polygons, whereas low-poly models have fewer.

Following are five main differences between High and Low poly

The Complexity of the Geometry

The geometry of high-poly models is quite complex, as it is made up of numerous polygons of various shapes, especially when it comes to curved things. In this situation, CG artists meticulously construct the geometry and double-check it to avoid high-poly modeling problems such as chipping, noticeable seams, holes in the surface, etc.

Low-poly models are geometrically simpler and include fewer polygons. Because of this quality, 3D objects can be used in apps and on any digital platform. Retopology is used by 3D modelers to improve the geometry further.

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Static and Motion Usage

Let's start with the 3D model application because its structure is directly dependent on it. High-poly models, in particular, are ideal for static HR renders such as lifestyle shots, silo renders, close-ups, cut-outs, and featured animation with a zoom effect. Because these are high-quality CGI, such models should be highly detailed and precisely created.

Low-poly CG imagery is utilized for interactive 360° views, 3D configurators, games, and AR/VR imaging. These models must be compatible with rendering and gaming software. As a result, they should have a few polygons so that any software can process them quickly.

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Texture Quality

Texturing high-poly models is a difficult task since it requires the use of multiple texture maps to get realistic results. Provide CG artists with HD images of texture samples if you need high-poly 3D items. The latter, in turn, can either develop a texture from scratch or search their library for similar material. Whether you create original textures or use ready-made samples, the final textures will appear great in HR render photos.

Low-poly item materials and textures can't be too complicated, or they'll take too long to render. To keep the visual features of the material while reducing the number of texture maps to a minimum, CG modelers "bake" textures. Low-poly 3D models will be lighter and more realistic due to this method.

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Processing/Rendering Time

Because of the intricate geometry, textures, and details, high-poly models take longer to render than low-poly models. The problem is that the rendering engine must calculate the refraction of light from every surface and edge of the high-poly 3D object. As a result, while creating a finished image may take some time, the result will be pretty photorealistic.

Because low-poly models are designed to render quickly, if not in real-time, all components are simple and light. As a result, gaming engines, VR/AR applications, and other applications can process them instantly.

 

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Detalization

High-poly models can be thoroughly detailed with various decorations, different decor, sophisticated design components, and so on, thanks to superior geometry. Naturally, a 3D model like this appears more realistic and hence stunning. Complex 3D models for your furniture with inlay, forging, carvings, and other features require meticulous detailing. Even with high-poly 3D models for static CGI, CG specialists always undertake retopology with such complicated objects.

Low-poly objects, on the other hand, cannot be hyper-detailed. If your furniture has a lot of intricacies and fittings, yet you need it for a 360° view or a 3D configurator, CG artists will have to retopologize it. Otherwise, they'll be too big for the engine to render in real-time.

 

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Frequently Asked Questions

How are polygon meshes used in 3D Modelling?

A polygon mesh is a set of edges, faces, and connecting points used to generate a polygon model for 3-D modeling and computer animation. Its geometric make-up can be saved to help with many types of three-dimensional rendering simulations. i.e. it helps in rendering 3D models.

What are polygons?

Polygons Are Basic Geometry Components of a 3D Model. Straight edges and vertices make up the polygon geometry. A face is a three-sided geometric figure, often known as a "triangular polygon," that has been produced. There are also "quads" with four sides and "n-gones" with multiple vertices. Each polygon is joined to other polygons to form a polygonal mesh, which is essentially a three-dimensional model. 

What shapes are used to model meshes?

Quadrangles and triangles are the most common polygons utilized; these geometric shapes can be further broken down into vertices in X, Y, and Z dimensions, as well as lines. The majority of 3D meshes are made by artists using tools such as Maya, 3D Studio Max, or the free open-source Blender 3D.

Conclusion 

In this article, we have extensively discussed the 3D Mesh and Polygons. We started by introducing 3D Mesh and its types, after that we discussed polygons and their types, and in the end, we concluded by discussing the differences between low and high poly. 

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