So, what is the Arnold .tx Converter and what does it do?
The Arnold .tx converter is a .bat file for Windows that speeds up the process to converter abitrary texture formats such as .jpg .png .bmp .exr .tiff and so on to mipmapped .tx files.
Typically you sit and work with abitrary texture file formats, maybe non are mipmapped, this makes the time to first pixel long, depending on amount and sizes and locations of textures in the scene. If you try load a 900mb .png file into the material editor and render it, you will be much much slower than an artists that loads a small .jpg dummy file and inject the .tx file at render time. The optimized .tx texture can load almoste instantly where the .png file would take many seconds to init.
Great memory management, keep memory footprings at a minimum.
Vastly faster init times to first pixel.
Almoste 3:1 in terms of speed, loading 1 single 400mb bitmap till first pixel
The render engine picks up the texture from the disk directly and does not sit in max and consume memory, or slow down artist experience
Scene assembly machine configuration:
When do I do this in the pipeline?
At the assembly machine where the shots are assembled and elements are linked in, as they are produced by artists.