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Prroblems Exporting .MOV files from Flash CS5

Nov 4, 2010 6:29 AM

I am having trouble exporting my animations created in Flash CS5 (or Macromedia flash 5, or CS3) to .MOV files. I'm having these issues on different  platforms  (mac and pc) and different operating systems (XP and win 7) - I only get error messages and out of memory errors, even on the fastest computer I have with 4gig of RAM working on a 2mg Flash file.

I just want to convert my Flash files to a format that can play on Youtube and standard DVD players. Also I've tried many converters (flash to video) - not all free (Moyea, Roxio, iWisoft, Winfx Video Converter, Amor, E.M. Magic, etc, etc) - nothing works. The main problems are either the sound is not synched, the playback is choppy, and the quality is awful.

I think my only hope of getting a good video is starting with a good .MOV file exported from Flash. I know the program is supposed to do this.
Any help greatly appreciated.

http://help.adobe.com/en_US/flash/cs/using/WSBC0687D4-42A6-445d-B5FF-8 032C7D3A8FF.html#WS6A15AAE2-C176-4161-BAB6-FB082F63B65Ba

 
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  • Currently Being Moderated
    May 2, 2011 9:39 AM   in reply to pablo0o0o0o0

    No response? This problem is driving me crazy! I export as swf and it plays smooth, but when I export as an mov it plays jerky. I have an i7 Macbook Pro, with 8gbs of ram, and nothing else running.

     
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    May 5, 2011 12:37 PM   in reply to joeshepherd2

    I have been having this problem also. Mac Os 10.6.7 8gbs ram, running only Flash, exports loaded with fragments and artifacts. Have tried 3rd party apps, iCoolsoft, Xilisoft,  whose ads say they will convert .swf to .mov but the trail versions don't, will not open file or will only produce empty containers. .swf looks great but I can't export it out of Flash. If anyone finds Holly Grail...   rather than weights of african sparrows.

     
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    Nov 10, 2011 2:53 PM   in reply to pablo0o0o0o0

    Why has nobody responded to this? It is a seriously fatiguing and disheartening problem. I am trying to save my .fla animation to .mov so it can be compiled with a custom soundtrack in Final Cut Pro. I have a brand new iMac with 8 gigs of Ram, and Flash CS 5.5. I exported to .mov (Animation compression high, no sound, no internet fast start), and wound up with loads of artifacts. Curiously, I had saved exactly the same file as a .mov on my PC (running Vista, lots of Ram, and Flash CS 5.0) several months before and had much better results.

     

    The lack of solid information and the lack of stability with the .mov export is infuriating.

     

    Does anyone have ANY suggestions about how I can get a .mov file out of Flash CS 5.5 reliably?

     
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    Nov 10, 2011 4:01 PM   in reply to coppy321

    What I have tried is very hit or miss. In Publish Settings, format for

    Flash only, click tab for Flash settings unclick everything on Hardware

    Acceleration try none then  try level 2-GPU. In the ActionScript settings

    you can try switching from Shaired Runtime Libraries to Merged into Code,

    sometimes helps. In QuickTime dialog drop number of color to atleast

    millions if not lower. First try compression None, then Animation, then

    H.265, then the one at the bottom of list(can't remember it's name. When

    you figure out what settings do the best job export SEVERAL times each

    export will be slightly different Pray to the God HSALF and hope for the

    best.

     

    Also suggested to me and has work sometimes is in Main Timeline cut fps in

    1/2 export and speed back up in video editor. Doesn't always work.

     

    It really sucks when the .swf looks great but you can;t get it out of

    Flash. Doremisoft.com has a .swf to .mov converter,for pay, the free trial

    version creates a watermarked file that looks pretty good but I think it

    may work through screen capture so there is some lose of quality.

     

    Let me know if you find a good method. I have this problem all the time.

    Good Luck

     
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    Nov 10, 2011 6:01 PM   in reply to danedmonds91

    This works for me.

     

    Set the stage size to the size of the video to be exported. Set the frame rate of the Flash movie to the frame rate to be used in the video. Lay the audio in the timeline. In the Quicktime Export Settings window, hit the Quicktime Settings... button in the lower left. In the Video Settings section, set the compression to None. Set the frame rate to be the same as the Flash movie, set the keyframes rate to automatic, the color depth to Millions of Colors + and the Quality to Best. In the Audio Settings section set the Compressor to None, the Rate to 44.1 kHz, the Size to 16 bit and the Use as you need.

     

    This will give you a very large file and will take a very long time. There will usually be a period of time at the end of the export process where nothing seems to be happening. Be patient.

     

    I have had files not export correctly, but on a second attempt, I usually get a correct file.

     

    Take this uncompressed .mov file into Final Cut Pro or Premiere and edit or compress as needed.

     
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    Dec 14, 2011 2:36 PM   in reply to pablo0o0o0o0

    I have tried everything! This is really upsetting me too! I have tried to go step by step from the adobe site. I have tried to relocate the file to a more direct folder. I have tried to not compress the mov. I want this solved! If I can't have this part of the program there is no need to use it. It is useless with out the ability to export to mov. ADOBE help us, please! I am tired of seeing "Could not complete operation because of an Unknown error."

     
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    Dec 14, 2011 3:05 PM   in reply to Hannah Joseph-Alvarado

    Hi, Rob really answered the question. Set the frame rate of the Flash movie

    to the frame rate to be used in the video. In Flash one has to remember to

    set up the document for the desired end result.The problem that I was

    having was I was using the default fps setting of 24 fps, which is fine for

    a web use senaro. But when the desired end result is a .mov or any video

    file the document fps must be set to 30 fps,* the frame rate of video.* When

    Flash has to export to .mov and convert from 24 fps to 30 fps it doesn't do

    a very good job. So change the fps setting to 30 in the timeline window or

    in the document properities section of the Properities Panel and follow the

    rest of his directions and I think you'll get much better results. Good luck

     
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    Dec 14, 2011 5:06 PM   in reply to danedmonds91

    thanks for trying Dane. It is still not working.

     
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    Dec 16, 2011 12:40 AM   in reply to pablo0o0o0o0

    Yes, I have to agree with Rob and danedmonds91. I finally changed my Flash movie to 30 fps from 24 fps and then exported to .mov using Animation compression on highest settings (my movie is an animation). This removed all of the artifacting I was having trouble with. So thanks to you both for your suggestions/confirmation of what the problem is and one way to resolve it.

     
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    Mar 3, 2012 4:35 PM   in reply to pablo0o0o0o0

    SOLUTION for choppy/laggy video.  I tired it and it works; some editing outside Flash Pro is required.

     

    Play the animation in Flash Pro (press Enter in the main screen). During playback watch the framerate loacted below the timeline.  You'll see that it doesn't remain constant.  Blocks of time with more scripts/symbols will slow down the fps, and the animation will appear choppy.  Those same points will also be choppy in the *.mov (coincidence? hmm...).

     

    The export function in Flash Pro doesn't transcribe *frames*, rather it plays the Flash animation and records it like a camcorder.  Those choppy slow-down moments in the *.mov are not a result of Quicktime video playback, they are embedded in the movie itself (you can see this by frame-skipping through the video in Premiere).

     

    SOLUTION TO CHOPPY MOV:

    • Either:     -figure out the slowest your frame rate goes on during timeline playback OR

                          -play it safe and just pick a ridiculously low fps (I chose 5)

    • Export the movie at this frame rate (set both the timeline and the export dialog box to 5)
    • You will end up with a very slow frame-by-frame video, but the point is it will be even.  Slowing down the frame rate gives Flash enough time between frames to load symbols and process scripts, without making a particular frame slower than any others.
    • Import it into Premiere/Final Cut and speed it up to correct rate.  It is now smooth and even.
    • Copy over the original audio into Premiere
    • Export the fixed movie
     
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    Sep 4, 2012 2:04 PM   in reply to FredRider

    FredRider wrote:

     

    SOLUTION for choppy/laggy video.  I tired it and it works; some editing outside Flash Pro is required.

     

    Play the animation in Flash Pro (press Enter in the main screen). During playback watch the framerate loacted below the timeline.  You'll see that it doesn't remain constant.  Blocks of time with more scripts/symbols will slow down the fps, and the animation will appear choppy.  Those same points will also be choppy in the *.mov (coincidence? hmm...).

     

    The export function in Flash Pro doesn't transcribe *frames*, rather it plays the Flash animation and records it like a camcorder.  Those choppy slow-down moments in the *.mov are not a result of Quicktime video playback, they are embedded in the movie itself (you can see this by frame-skipping through the video in Premiere).

     

    SOLUTION TO CHOPPY MOV:

    • Either:     -figure out the slowest your frame rate goes on during timeline playback OR

                          -play it safe and just pick a ridiculously low fps (I chose 5)

    • Export the movie at this frame rate (set both the timeline and the export dialog box to 5)
    • You will end up with a very slow frame-by-frame video, but the point is it will be even.  Slowing down the frame rate gives Flash enough time between frames to load symbols and process scripts, without making a particular frame slower than any others.
    • Import it into Premiere/Final Cut and speed it up to correct rate.  It is now smooth and even.
    • Copy over the original audio into Premiere
    • Export the fixed movie

    You are a life saver! Thanks. I exported my file as 29.97 fps instead of 59.94 fps and there were no glitches, trailing letters, or blank spaces. Great solution!!!

     
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    May 16, 2013 11:10 AM   in reply to Carlos5221992

    Wow, I finally found others with the same problem! Ok, the recording at a low frame rate and importing into final cut seems promising, but I don't have a mac. Does this mean I would have to buy Premiere??? It would suck if I would have to buy Premiere just to export properly. By the way, turning off compression I was able to improve the performance of the vidoe, but it's still a bit laggy.

     
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    May 16, 2013 2:16 PM   in reply to mikeo122591

    Working at a low frame rate to get good video is a bad idea. If your Flash movie is running poorly in Flash, it's not going to improve when you export it to video. You need to have a smoothly running Flash movie to start with. Ideally you should produce your Flash file at the frame rate that you need for your finished video.

     

    When you do export your Flash file to video, using no compressors, either for the audio or the video, should give you the cleanest video file. Giving Flash's exporter the least amount of work to do, should result in the best quality video file. You don't have to do this, particularly if you don't have a video application to use to compress the file.  Alternately, there may be a free video application for windows that will do what you need. You don't need anything with a lot of features, just an application that can apply the compressors that you want to use for the final video.

     

    You may be able to download and "try" Premiere to do the job.

     
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    May 16, 2013 3:17 PM   in reply to Rob Dillon

    In an ideal world, yes.  But sometimes there is just too much code to have something run as smoothly as you like.  In other cases, it's the  hardware that's the limiting factor.  What you're saying isn't really helpful, it's just criticism. You're saying "make faster movies".  Thanks!

     

    The solution I'm offering works; not just in theory, but in practice.  Flash and video are two different beasts:  big blocks of Actionscript and sprite-loads will slow down Flash, but have no effect on movies, since those components doen't exist in movies.  It may be a solution of last resort, but at least it's guaranteed.  It also costs less than buying a brand new computer.

     

    i.e.  If a block of code/image loading takes 100 milliseconds to process (equivalent of 3 frames) you can:

    • Slow the frame rate x10 - the code still takes 3 frames to process
    • Export to video
    • Speed up the exported video x10 - the code now takes the equivalent of 3/10 frames, or a negligable time in this new timeframe

     

    You essentially hide the code processing, which is the cause of the choppyness.  This results in significantly smoother video.

     

    Many videos won't see any appreciable improvment (because they were already smooth to begin with).  But some of us are there trying to produce cinema-grade videos on cheap hardware, and have no better choice.

     

    As for slowing down the video, all you really need is a free editing package with that functionality.  Since I have Premiere, I've never looked for anything else, so I don't know what else to recommend.

     

    Cheers, and happy rendering

     
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    May 16, 2013 5:32 PM   in reply to Rob Dillon

    Ok, here is the deal. Like someone else said, my video is perfect in flash and as an swf file. I'm not looking to improve the video when I export, I am looking to maintain it. I tried using no compressors, but I still have some dropped frames. There aren't too many, but it's enough to make watching the video annoying.

     

    I don't use any action script, just simple tweens and what not, nothing that should be beyond flash's limitations or strain it too much. My computer is still fairly solid. I have an i7 processor 4ghz and 4gs of ram. All I want is for my simple flash movies to look the way they do in the swf file!

     

    If I have tried no compressors with video or audio, am I out of options? I just don't understand how people manage to upload animations to youtube in such great quality while mine get sigifnicantly downgraded. (quicktime= dropped frames, avi= downgraded quality)

     
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    May 19, 2013 10:19 AM   in reply to coppy321

    thanks to this thread. i am doing some redesign on http://www.otcmagic.com/ was having this exact same problem. Now I now how to export my flash animations to .MOV files.

     
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    May 19, 2013 7:14 PM   in reply to colnarco

    Sorry, what exactly did you do that fixed your problem??

     
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    May 29, 2013 9:56 PM   in reply to pablo0o0o0o0

    I have Flash to MOV converter for mac, I've converted some 200 full-length flash files and have yet to find something as intuitive, stable and easy to use as it. If you're in to tuning your conversions to death this is not for you, if you want something that works yr money is well-spent!

     
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    Jun 28, 2013 9:16 AM   in reply to pablo0o0o0o0

    Exporting the video at a slower FPS with all the settings maxed and then speeding it up later may not be the most practical and adding a few extra steps can increase the chances of error...I wasn't willing to maniuplate the frame rate, so I tried with the highest video settings and my file ended up being 10GB in size for a video with 1689 frames, and there were STILL artifacts.

     

    There's also the option of exporting your sequence as individual frames and recombinging them using Quicktime Pro (I found that on another forum), and Quicktime Pro is a pretty cheap program ($20?). Just remember to hide your motion guides and activate your masks (right click on your masks in the timeline and select Show Masks), or they'll show up in your frames and you'll have to start again. Also, when inputting your individual frames, remember to select the correct frame speed to it matches the one that you're working with. From there, you have a complete video clip that you can input into any editing suite (heck, Windows Movie Maker is adequate if you're just putting it on YouTube).

     

    Either way, Flash Professional doesn't appear to be capable of generating a .MOV that works outside of the box on its own, at least not without the addition of a 3rd party plugin. Given the proliferation of animation projects on TV that are animated using Flash, I was thinking that Flash SHOULD have a way to render a .MOV file properly (ie: without dropping frames and leaving behind artifacts because it's taking too long to read the frame), but then, it's best to use the right tools for the job. You can use most of the tools in Creative Suite/Cloud to generate the same layered image, but every single application has a specific purpose:

     

    • Photoshop can handle text layouts, vector imagery, and animation, but it's best at manipulation of raster images.
    • Illustrator can handle text layouts and some manipulation of raster images, but it's best at creating and editing vector images.
    • InDesign can do some manipulation of raster images (or at least it imports them) and creating/drawing of vector images, but it's best at text layouts for multi-page documents and arranging images.
    • Flash allows you to layout text, draw image vectors, and manipulate rasters, but its best for animation and interactive content (I draw my characters in Illustrator first then import then in Flash...Flash drawing tools just drive me buggy).
    • Your video editing suite (and probably Premiere...haven't used Premiere in a long time, so I can't say for sure) can handle some text inputs, does some animation, but it's best for taking existing video and audio clips (from whatever sources) and editing them non-linearly.

     

    I'll need someone in the biz to confirm this, but I do suspect that for studio based Flash animation projects that end up on TV (eg: Teen Titans Go!, My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic), they wouldn't be generating the show entirely using Flash (laying down soundtrack and dialogue as well) and then exporting to .MOV. It's more likely that they'd be exporting individual clips without audio (either using the slow frame rate method or by exporting individual frames and importing to Quicktime) and using a non-linear video editor to edit the clips and lay down audio tracks accordingly.

     
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    Jun 29, 2013 11:06 AM   in reply to Toquinha1977

    You're right, it's a waste of space and inefficient. (I didn't mean to sound snippy in my last comment, sorry).  Disk space is cheaper than a new computer chip+motherboard.  I wish there was a better solution, but to paraphrase Rumsfeld:

     

    "you make an animation with the computer you have---not the computer you might want or wish to have at a later time."

     

    I guess us indie animators don't have the power to influence Adobe to change their tack, so we have to suck it up and find the best solution given our software.  It's also obvious that you're  100% correct, and it's a massive oversight that should be fixed on Adobe's side. 

     

    BTW, I did try the individual frames method, but I gave it up because it seemed so much more unweildy :\

     

     

    Have fun Flashing! (maybe I could have phrased that better)

     
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    Jul 1, 2013 5:54 AM   in reply to Toquinha1977

    Great, thanks so much. So far adobe premire has been decent, but if problems turn up i'll be sure to turn to what you recommended. Thanks so much for you reply.

     
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    Jul 1, 2013 5:55 AM   in reply to FredRider

    Thanks FredRider for your reply. I guess your right. Glad to know that there are others out there with the same problems. Thanks for your insight.

     
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    Jul 1, 2013 9:57 PM   in reply to mikeo122591

    Hi Everyone,

     

    Have you tried exporting your content to MOV files using Flash CC? The new export video workflow is designed to provide a simple and seamless experience. I encourage you to try the feature out and let us know your feedback.

     

    Regards,

    Suhas Yogin

     
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    Jul 15, 2013 1:35 PM   in reply to Suhas Yogin

    The topic says "Prroblems Exporting .MOV files from Flash CS5" so I think we need a solution for CS5 not for CC.

     

    I have the same issue and nothing of this tricks works for me, the problem shows up after I use the 3D rotation tool, without using this thing flash exports .mov like a charm, but my animation uses this damn tool and I've stucked on the great warning "unkown" error msg, so ridiculous...

     

    The ONLY WAY you get out of this mess is using Quicktime, furtunely it cames with an option to RECORD your screen, and works great, better than any capture PAID software on the market, so hit cmd + enter on Flash and let the player begin your flash animation, then open the quicktime and choose 'New Record from Screen' and voi-la you can select a specific area from your screen and record you flash movie, it will be saved as a .mov file.

     

    ps. Hit cmd + enter again to re-start your flash movie to make sure you get all the flash movie then edit on premiere or whatever to edit

     
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    Jul 15, 2013 2:52 PM   in reply to kobawsky

    I think part of your problem might be coming from your use of movie clip symbols, "after I use the 3D rotation tool" that tool only works on movie clip symbols. What I have found on the web leads me to believe that graphic symbols will export to .mov files much better than movie clip symbols. Even though I have had movie clip symbols export cleanly, and I don't know why. While a movie clip symbol can have ActionScript attached to it, for games and what not, that is not necessary needed to to produce an animation .mov file.

     

    For me, to get a clean .mov, I set the document fps at 30 frames per second - to match video at 30 fps, I only use graphic symbols, I try to only use shape and classic tweens, with motion guide layers when needed rather than motion tweens. In the Publish Settings dialog I uncheck everything execpt .swf (don't need a HTML or XML file published to get a .mov). I follow the QuickTime settings outlined in Rob Dillon's response above but will sometimes use animation compression. If the first export is not clean, I export again, sometimes exporting 3 or 4 times to get a clean file.

     

    If that doesn't work your maybe caught in the file is to heavy/machine not big enough debate. Good Luck.

     
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