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    Sintel ‘Lite’ – Character file for testing / learning.

    on February 27th, 2011, by ben

    With the version uploaded to I somehow left out the textures. The other links are fine. – about 1mb

    NEW: – quick video tour.

    This zip file contains the textures needed to use/render Sintel Lite. Extract to the same folder as the .blend and it should automatically create a folder called ‘textures’ with all the image files in it. All should work as normal from there. – .blend only, about 26mb

    The idea is pretty straight forward – I’ve edited a ‘lite’ version of the Sintel character file for testing and learning purposes. As it was on the DVD, sintel.blend opened in 2.56a (trunk, not render branch) and re-saved came to about 71mb. There was also about 1.25gb of textures, mainly from using .png files for the film. It was not a particularly friendly size for downloading, copying and generally moving about the place for a single character. I know some characters get far more complex in the industry but with the range of Blender users worldwide and their respective internet access and hardware it wasn’t all that nice to leave it that way. I remember studying the Proog file inside out from the first Open Movie project, so I get that this can be a valuable thing for the community.

    Most of what I did was condense the textures down (a lot), trim out objects, geometry, materials and so on that were not essential to the look or functionality of the character. Both the high res and the low res geometry are still in there with the particle hair and a relatively fast lighting setup (no raytracing at all). All is updated to work in Blender 2.56a trunk – ie. the main official builds from for those who don’t know. This is different to the render branch used for the film. Nathan has also helped to update the rig script for this version. However it is worth noting that as Blender is subject to change, the rigging scripts may also break again in future builds of Blender.

    Quick rundown: (differs from sintel.blend on DVDs)

    Layer 1 – High res meshes
    Layer 2 – Hair
    Layer 3 – Proxy meshes
    Layer 10 – Collision meshes for hair
    Layer 11 – Character rig
    Layer 12 – Lights, camera, ground
    Layer 13 – OpenGL light setup, (basically with no shadows for posing the character)
    Layer 20 – Everything else (meta rig – which was used to generate actual rig – and the mesh deform cage)

    These links are all the same packed .blend file, just posted as .blend, .7z and .zip – .blend only, about 26mb – textures, about 1mb 6.2mb 11.6mb

    The following video is a test to make sure that I didn’t do anything to the file that would make it incompatible with the animations from the film.

    What I did break however and haven’t got to fixing yet (as has been pointed out to me) is the groups for importing the character to other files.

    Explanation of how to fix this back up, with some tests from the developer Aligorith. What I did for the bamboo video test is simply import/append the action into a copy of the character file and render.

    From here – enjoy! Use the file to make animations, test features, file bug reports even as they come up. Feel free to make improvements, share them around and so on. It should go without saying, but the licensing for this file is the same Creative Commons license as the dvd files.

    For feedback and discussion, I check now more often than this blog, so please feel free to post here:

    Cheers, Ben

    32 Responses to “Sintel ‘Lite’ – Character file for testing / learning.”

    1. Satish 'iluvblender' Goda Says:

      Wonderful. Thank you for your effort 🙂

    2. D Says:

      Thanks heaps, Ben! 😀 This was just what I was (and, I hope, many others were) waiting for.

    3. Gorka Says:

      Thanks Ben!

    4. Satish 'iluvblender' Goda Says:

      Here is my first test.. Added Suzzane to the mix.. (How could i not!)

      Really helpful resource. Thanks for sharing Ben and team 🙂

    5. Satish 'iluvblender' Goda Says:

      Here is a turntable with music 🙂

    6. david Says:

      Thanks! cant wait for the rest of the files. (I should just buy the dvd and help support future projects thought. 🙂 )
      The blend form does not have the textures packed in to the file. Sintel is invisible when the files loads and she looks funny when rendered. I downloaded from the other links and they work fine. (.zip and .7z comes with the external textures)

    7. ben Says:

      @david – cheers! Replied at Blendswap and update this post to include the extra texture link for now.

    8. bbbs Says:

      Yes, this is nice! Thanks a lot, usefull stuff. Maybe you can do it with other Sintel Characters too.

    9. Thomas Says:

      w00t 7zip! This is great! Thanks a lot Ben!

    10. Jos Says:

      I get the following error when I try to open sintel_lite_v2_1.blend:

      GPUShader: linking error:
      Number of Fragment Texture Units exceeds HW limits.
      Number of combined Texture Units exceeds HW limits.

      Any clues?

    11. Jokayo Says:

      thank you so much for this , looking forward to see the dragon character I really want to know its structure specially the wings 🙂

    12. Davide Says:

      Hi, thanks for the lite version.
      Unfortunately I have a problem opening the file: I’m using a Macbook Pro, intel with 4GB RAM and Blender is v2.56a, current trunk. When opening it completely freeze and blender is not responding. Any idea?

    13. Gaurav Says:

      hey, I’m getting the same error like the Jos’

      Number of Fragment Texture Units exceeds HW limits.
      Number of combined Texture Units exceeds HW limits.

      even I am clueless… :/

      I can open the heavy sintel model without any issues (but cant render) and can’t even open the liter one..!!
      sounds funny..

      why is it so??
      please help
      thanks 🙂

    14. ben Says:

      Hi all, I’m not ignoring the comments but didn’t have the time last night to look into it. I know it will be something to do with openGL because I saved the file with OpenGL preview mode/shading on. As for testing I have XP on a netbook and the file itself I’ve been working on in Windows 7 64bit. Currently I don’t have any machines with Linux and don’t own a mac.

      So, if your card or onboard chip has issues with opengl from time to time that would be it. I should have time on the weekend to look at this further, but probably not before then.

      It may help to just use the stock build from instead of the most current revision of Blender if you aren’t doing that already.

    15. Davide Says:

      Thanks Ben.
      If there is something I can do for helping you, just let me know.
      email is

      davidespada at gmail dot com

    16. Matt Says:

      Wow! Great resource here, thanks for doing this for us! Just a small complaint, a quick File> External Data> Report missing files says there is a missing mesh data file called “boots”. Judging by the path it shows, i’m guessing this is some sort of sculpting thing? I don’t even know if this is important or anything, but I thought I might as well tell you 😉

    17. ben Says:

      @Matt – I thought I killed off all of that, but all the sculpt data on Sintel was very very subtle. Which is the sort of thing I killed off on purpose to lighten up the file size and render time. The linking to external sculpt data seemed a bit hit and miss during the project on render branch so it wasn’t extensively used other than the dragons. Could have been Blender, could have been svn, a mixture… Probably has been fixed since.

      Basically “boots” wasn’t meant to be there.

    18. Hamed Zaghaghi Says:

      Thanks for this great blend 🙂

      For those who can’t open this file successfully, I suggest that when you want to open it set “Load UI” off. You can find it in open dialog.

    19. Davide Says:

      Hi Hamed,
      thanks, your hint worked perfectly! I just opened the file in a second and testing right now.
      Big thanks!

    20. ben Says:

      @Hamed – Thanks! Hopefully that will help a bunch of people. In retrospect I didn’t create the file in ideal test conditions, if Blender has such conditions. I’m not a fan of Blender’s defaults so I change a bunch of stuff whenever I open up a stock build from or, etc.

      To all who find bugs, I appreciate general feedback but I’m not a developer. I also currently don’t have access to Linux or Mac. Part of the reason of making this file was to make finding bugs a bit easier anyway so if you could report them to the bug tracker then that would be great! Other than that I’ll try to help where I can. 🙂

    21. NQATSi Says:

      Undead Sintel!


    22. Jos Says:

      Thanks mate, that did the trick! Testing right now!

    23. Derek Peavey Says:

      “Double rainbow all the way!”

      So intense.

    24. ben Says:

      For anyone still checking this page, I’m planning to keep this character up to date for official builds, meaning 2.57 which is out now. More news when there is an update on Sintel Lite.

    25. Stef Says:

      is it just me, or is sintel_lite2.1 broken in blender 2.57? I can’t get any of the rig properties to work.

    26. beorn Says:

      Stef, read the post above. In a few days we’ll post a new version.

    27. Linkeltje Says:

      Hi I want to thank you for the opportunity, to learn from this amazing project. I tried to understand how this rig works because it moves really good, though it might be still a bit intense for me… So many bones are sticking out of this character O_o

    28. dave Says:

      Hello, thank you so much for a great learning tool!!! My issue is a Sintel/Makehuman issue: I tired to link hair_proxy so a Makehuman (ALFA6) model using alt-J (after appending). When I bring in a bvh file the hair detaches from the model? Have any suggestions?

    29. Spartanis Says:

      Hi, I downloaded this file(s) with much delight knowing im going to learn a whole lotta things about character modeling/texture/riggn/animation etc

      But when i open this file, Blender crashes (Does not respond error)

      I checked and i do have open GL switched on.

      Blender version i’m using is 2.59
      Laptop Dell
      Windows 7 64bit

      I can link/append the files ok.. it just opening the actual file isnt.

    30. Broken Link Says:

      The link above is broken since has shutdown its file hosting.

      Please reupload those textures.

    31. Balaji Says:


      Can You Please Tell me where can i download ” Baby Dragon Texture Files ” ???

      Thank You

    32. hakuma Says:

      looks great…..but i just cant download it……..”sad”