Ok, more questions. As stated before i'm trying to update my personal Franken-Pack to 1.16 out of terminal desperation. It should also be noted that said pack is built primarily on top of R3dCraft from 1.10 days. That's before the advent of labPBR... and that's relevant to this question.
And the question is... how do I convert R3dCraft's normal maps to work with the new LabPBR1.2 format?
My attempts to convert the z-axis data I believe to be stored in the R3dCraft normals to height map data has resulted in spiny porcupine blocks. Perhaps it's an issue of scale or a difference in their zero point? So like i'd need to convert X blue to Y transparency instead of just using X for the transparency? I'm not even 100% sure the blue channel of the R3dCraft normals really is z-axis data. I'm just guessing based on the time period when R3dCraft was last updated, my memory that... yes it did have parallax occlusion mapping, that it was targeted at continuum 1.x, and this posted by Matteo Rizzo of Realistico (and a fair bit of wishful thinking).
Also R3dCraft has a few gray-scale occlusion map files (*_o.png) sprinkled throughout. Can I just dump those into the blue channel of the normals or do I need to do more conversion work there too to get ambient occlusion? The answer appears to be "yes, just dump it into the blue channel". At least I can see no issues with it after having tried it... though i can also barely tell a difference.
Additionally, Matteo Rizzo's post say the following about the alpha channel of specular maps under labpbr1.0:
alpha: subsurface scatter on foliage and gems, light emission on other materials, inverted so that blocks not utilizing this can have solid alpha
Sooo... the shaderpacks that implement LabPBR1.0 are supposed to arbitrarily switch from subsurface scattering to light emission when it's not foliage and gems? Does this hold true for LabPBR1.2? Would like to tinker with subsurface scatterring for quartz ore and blocks... but that is definately not folliage and i'm guessing it doesn't count as gems either.
EDIT... seems to be a bit more complicated than that above quote makes it seem. Also holy crap look at those emerald glitter in the moon light. Preeettty!