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What's in the composition? How are you trying to render? What is different about this project and the ones that do just fine? Sometimes the best way to get an answer is to provide some information about the problem.
In the compisition is text and several CC Particle World layers attached to a Null Object which has a motion path.
The animation is 3 seconds long.
I am rendering using default settings + Apple Intermediate Codec.
CS6 Version 188.8.131.528
Using a process of elimination I've narrowed the problem down to changing the comp size.
> CS6 Version 184.108.40.2068
First, make sure that you've installed the latest updates ( http://adobe.ly/lsrkmJ ). They fix a lot of problems. There have been two major bug-fix updates that you haven't installed.
There are lots of codecs that are very picky about comp size. You must use the standard comp sizes for these codecs. What size is your comp?
Comp size is 2500 x 1406
You'll have to render that size comp to a production codec like QuickTime JPG or use an image sequence because it won't work for most MPEG codecs. The size is Illegal.
Why is the comp that size? What are you planning to do with the project? Unless you have a very specific project requirement it's best to stick with the presets for comp sizes available in AE.
Technically I don't have to have the comp that big, but I've deliberately made it big enough so that there are enough pixels for AE to use.
What is the biggest legal size (landscape)?
You are misunderstanding video production. Video is always based on whole pixels. You don't gain anything by trying to stuff more pixels in a video frame because the size of the frame is limited. You should start a project by planning around your playback device. Video for the web is usually limited to HD and that's the most common frame size in use today. You want the comp you are rendering for delivery to be 1920 X 1080 for HD.
If you working with a nested comp that you want to scale down and move around then 30,000 X 30,000 pixels is the upper limit for frame size and 3 hours is the maximum length of a single composition. AE is most often used to create shots that are edited into a movie in a non linear editor. My average comp is under a minute. Most are only a few seconds long.
Check out the help files on Composition Basics. The only time you should use anything other than one of the standard pre-sets for your final rendering composition is when you are specifically going for delivery with a non standard device like a video wall or LED signage.