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Burley states about metallic parameter:

"This is a linear blend between two different models. ..."

What are the two models? I can't see this described in the Frostbite or the Unreal papers either.

Is it simply a blend between the diffuse and specular terms or a scaling factor on the specular term?

Disney Paper

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If I'm reading this right, the answer seems to be right there in the continuation of that line:

metallic - the metallic-ness (0 = dielectric, 1 = metallic). This is a linear blend between two different models. The metallic model has no diffuse component and also has a tinted incident specular, equal to the base color.

(With the implication that the dielectric model is defined by not having those specific traits)

ie...

Dielectric Model:

  • Has diffuse component
  • Incident specular is not tinted

Metallic Model:

  • Diffuse component = 0
  • Incident specular is tinted by base colour
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