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Use a Surface Shader when you want to completely control the color, transparency and matte opacity of a material. This kind of shader does no shading calculation of any kind. Rather, it allows you connect other attributes directly to its color, glow color, and transparency. It completely ignores everything else that would normally affect a shader.

For example, if you connect the Translate attribute of an object to the Out Color attribute of a Surface Shader, then the color of the shader will depend on the position of the object in space. As the object moves, it will change color.

In the table below, important attributes have their names indicated in bold in the description column.

This node is MP safe

Node nameParentsClassificationMFn typeCompatible function sets

Related nodes

lambert, reflect, phongE, phong, blinn, anisotropic, volumeShader, simpleVolumeShader, displacementShader, layeredShader, useBackground, defaultShaderList, shadingMap

Attributes (17)

materialAlphaGain, outColor, outColorB, outColorG, outColorR, outGlowColor, outGlowColorB, outGlowColorG, outGlowColorR, outMatteOpacity, outMatteOpacityB, outMatteOpacityG, outMatteOpacityR, outTransparency, outTransparencyB, outTransparencyG, outTransparencyR

Long name (short name)TypeDefaultFlags
outColor (oc) float30.0, 0.0, 0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Color. Connect another attribute to this to control the color of the material with that attribute.
outColorR (ocr) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Color red value
outColorG (ocg) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Color green value
outColorB (ocb) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Color blue value
outTransparency (ot) float30.0, 0.0, 0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Transparency. Connect another attribute to this to control the transparency of the material.
outTransparencyR (otr) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Transparency red value
outTransparencyG (otg) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Transparency green value
outTransparencyB (otb) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Transparency blue value
outMatteOpacity (omo) float31.0, 1.0, 1.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Matte Opacity. Connect another attribute to this to control the opacity of the material's matte (alpha) channel.
outMatteOpacityR (omor) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Matte Opacity red value
outMatteOpacityG (omog) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Matte Opacity green value
outMatteOpacityB (omob) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Matte Opacity blue value
outGlowColor (og) float30.0, 0.0, 0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Glow Color. Connect another attribute to this to control the glow color of the material.
outGlowColorR (ogr) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Glow Color red value
outGlowColorG (ogg) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Glow Color green value
outGlowColorB (ogb) float0.0outputinputconnectablestorable
Out Glow Color blue value
materialAlphaGain (maga) float1.0outputinputconnectablestorablekeyable
Material Alpha Gain