Importing BluffTitler created animations into other software

BluffTitler exports its animations as AVI files. The AVI format is the most widely supported video format: every video editing application (NLE) can import AVI files.

Choose File > Export as Movie... to export a BluffTitler show as an AVI file.

You can use Window Media Player (WMP) to check if your animation has been exported successfully.

The following four settings are important when creating an AVI file:

  • 1 RESOLUTION
    This is the size of the animation in pixels. Use the menu item File > Set Show Resolution... to change the resolution. Most DVD authoring tools accept the PAL DVD and NTSC DVD presets. NTSC is used in the USA, Japan and most Latin American countries. PAL is used in Europe and the rest of the world.

  • 2 FRAMERATE
    This is the animation speed in number of frames per second. Use the menu item File > Export as Movie... to change the framerate. Again use the PAL and NTSC presets.

  • 3 VIDEO COMPRESSION
    This is the way the movie is compressed to make it occupy less disk space. Use the menu item File > Export as Movie... to change the compression type.

    If a codec (encoder filter) refuses to work you will have to do some experimenting with different resolutions. Some codecs have strange limitations. For example some codecs demand that the horizontal resolution is divisible by 8,16,32 or even 64. Other codecs, like DivX seem to work only with a limited number of standard resolutions like 640 x 480 and 800 x 600. If everything fails choose Microsoft Video 1 or Full Frames (Uncompressed).

    images/manual/compression
    Compressed or uncompressed?
    If your BluffTitler generated video file is not the final product but an intermediate file, meant for further processing in a DVD authoring tool, Windows Movie Maker or any other video editing tool we advise you not to use compression. In that case, for maximum quality, compression should be postponed to the very end: when you press the burn DVD or publish online button.

    Uncompressed AVI will give you the best possible image quality, but also the biggest file size. In fact, uncompressed AVI files will not play without stuttering and most of the time never reach the end because harddisks are not fast enough to read that much information from disk in time. This is not a problem for your DVD authoring tool because the DVD it will create will play perfectly, but if you want to watch smooth animations on your computer you have to use compression.

    A good lossless video codec can be found here.

  • 4 TRANSPARENCY
    BluffTitler can create AVI files with transparency information (RGBA, or AVI with alpha channel). You can do this by selecting Uncompressed AVI with transparency in the File/Export as Movie... dialog. This is very useful if you want to overlay your titles onto your videos, but unfortunately not all video tools can import AVIs with transparency, so try using AVI without transparency if your NLE starts complaining about not being able to read your AVI file.

    BluffTitler allows you to export your BT show as compressed AVI with transparency info. This combination of compression and transparency is rare and not many encoders and NLEs support it.

Video editing applications (NLEs)

This page gives you tips for using BluffTitler in combination with the following applications:

If you have experienced any problems with BluffTitler generated video files or are using an application that is not listed here please share your knowledge with other users. Send your report to:

info@outerspace-software.com

Adobe Premiere

Choose File > Import to import a video file into Adobe Premiere.

For more info visit adobe.com

AVS Video Editor

There are no issues with AVS Video Editor, it gives excellent results. Export the BT animations as full frame AVIs (uncompressed) and then use AVS Video Editor to burn them to a DVD.

For more info visit avs4you.com

Canopus Edius

AVI limitations

Canopus seems to accept only animations that have the exact DVD resolution and framerate.

For the PAL version use a resolution of 720 x 576 and a framerate of 25

For the NTSC version use a resolution of 720 x 480 and a framerate of 29.97

For more info visit grassvalley.com

ivsEdits

Importing a movie

Right click in the Repository window, choose Add Files > From Project Folders and drag the thumbnail of the video from the repository to the timeline.

Transparency

ivsEdits has no problems importing transparent videos.

For more info visit ivs.it

MAGIX Video deLuxe

Importing a movie

Drag and drop the AVI files from the file browser onto the timeline.

AVI limitations

MAGIX Video deLuxe version 2007 and later support transparency. Older versions do not support AVIs with transparency info. Apart from that all resolutions and framerates are accepted: MAGIX scales them to the required resolution.

Transparency

MAGIX Video deLuxe version 2007 and later support transparency. To import a transparent video perform the following steps:

  • click the right mouse button
  • open Video Effect
  • click on Black Box in Mix FX

For more info visit magix.com

Microsoft Windows Movie Maker

Importing a movie

Choose File > Import... or drop the AVI file onto WMM.

AVI limitations

No limitations.

Transparency

Movie Maker can import transparent AVIs, but seems to ignore the transparency information.

Peculiarities

In Windows XP you won't find WMM in the start menu. You can find the application in the C:\Program Files\Movie Maker folder.

For more info visit microsoft.com

Photodex Proshow

Importing AVIs into Photodex Proshow

Drag the AVI file from the folders list to the timeline.

Transparency

Proshow does not support transparent AVIs, but it can use another video as a mask. You can create this mask video by applying the Export/CheckAlpha.fx effect to the camera layer, setting the FX Show Alpha Channel property to 1 and exporting your video as Uncompressed AVI with Transparency.

This trick works in the Gold (light) as well as the Producer version.

Pinnacle Studio

Importing AVIs into Pinnacle Studio

Select the Edit tab and use the dropdown listbox and the two buttons to the right of the listbox to select the BluffTitler created AVI file. Selected AVI files can be dragged onto the timeline.

Transparency

Transparent AVIs can be dropped on the overlay track of the timeline. This way they are rendered transparently on top of the video track.

Studio 10 can handle transparancy, but older versions seem to have problems handling transparent AVIs. If Studio complains about not being able to read your AVI file you will have to export your animations without transparency.

Stuttering DVDs

If your Studio 10 created DVDs stutter you have to switch from Best Quality to Automatic Quality.

Memory problems

Pinnacle uses a lot of system resources, including precious video memory that BluffTitler requires for high quality antialiasing. For maximum quality it is best not to keep Pinnacle and BluffTitler open at the same time.

For more info visit pinnaclesys.com

Pinnacle Liquid

BluffTitler exports which are not to be overlaid over video

Use Uncompressed AVI or Numbered Frames for maximum quality.

BluffTitler exports which are to be overlaid over video

Use the Uncompressed AVI with Transparency option. If file output size is an issue and you still wish to overlay an animation, you can use Liquid's Chroma Key option. Choose File > Set Background Colour... in BluffTitler to set the background colour. Once imported into Liquid you can use the Keying Editor located under Classic Clip FX/Editors with little or no adjustments.

When the BluffTitler exports are imported into Liquid Edition 5.5 they will need to be rendered as DV Quality before they can be used within the NLE. This usually starts automatically because of the "Background Render" feature of Liquid Edition 5.5.

Importing AVIs into Liquid Edition

Select the desired Rack and right click in the content window and choose Import, Media Clip.

Further antialiasing in Liquid Edition

If required you can further antialias a BluffTitler animation by using the Gaussian Blur option from the Classic Filter Editor and set the Horizontal Radius & Vertical Radius both to 0.4.

Bitmap problem

Bitmaps (.BMP files) exported from Liquid Edition are dispayed as a white screen in BluffTitler. Loading the bitmap into Paint and saving the image again corrects the problem.

Memory problems

Pinnacle uses a lot of system resources, including precious video memory that BluffTitler requires for high quality antialiasing. For maximum quality it is best not to keep Pinnacle and BluffTitler open at the same time.

For more info visit pinnaclesys.com

PureMotion EditStudio

EditStudio has no problems importing BluffTitler generated movies.

Transparency

ES does not yet suppport AVI with transparency, so use the chroma key - and that is easy to use in ES.

For more info visit mediachance.com

Serif MoviePlus

There are no issues importing BluffTitler generated AVI files into Serif MoviePlus 4 and Serif MoviePlus 5.

For more info visit serif.com

Sony Vegas

Transparency

Vegas does not automatically recognize the alpha (transparency) channel in the AVI files. You can instruct Vegas to use the alpha channel by right clicking on the video in the timeline, choosing Properties and setting the Alpha Channel dropdown in the Media tab to Straight (unmatted).

Make sure to place the transparent video in the Video Overlay track.

Peculiarities

Vegas 5 refuses to import files from a path containing the word "TITLE" - all uppercase. If ANY or ALL of the letters are lowercase, there is no problem reading or finding the file. Change the folder name, or move the file in question and you should not have any problems opening it.

The Sony Vegas Movie Studio (little brother to Vegas) works the exact same way as the main Vegas application. The lite version can also handle transparent AVIs. You need to click the video event properties, followed by the media properties to select the premultiplied dirty option.

For more info visit sony.com

Ulead VideoStudio

Importing a movie

Drag and drop the AVI files from the file browser(library) onto the timeline.

AVI limitations

VideoStudio can handle all AVI formats.

Transparency

VideoStudio can handle AVI files with transparency. In the timeline mode (not the default storyboard mode) you can see two video tracks. Drag the background video to the first track and the transparent AVI to the second. For some reason you have to switch between tracks a couple of times before the two video tracks are mixed correctly.

Peculiarities

VideoStudio does not scale AVI files to fullscreen, so make sure the resolution of the title animation matches the resolution of the background video.

For more info visit ulead.com

Post render event

The File > Export as Movie... dialog features a Post Render Command Line option. This is executed when the rendering is finished.

It can be used, for example, to use FFmpeg to convert your AVI file to MPG. In this case the command looks something like this:

"C:\Program Files (x86)\FFMPEG\bin\ffmpeg.exe\" -i d:\temp\test.avi d:\temp\test.mpg