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The most common cause of this is oversized photos. Make sure your photos are no larger than 1000x750 pixels in size.
You're probably right I just hadn't thought of that. Most of the pictures are huge and up to almost 2 megabytes in size (each) and there are over 200 pictures in total. I'll try resizing them and recreate the slideshow. I'll post how it worked out, but it could take some time...
This gets a lot of folk. The first thought is that, "hey, Photoshop handles these on my system, without a glitch, or a memory error." But in this case, we're talking about many of these images - one for each frame of the Duration of the Clip at 30x that Duration (fps and will vary by Project presets, might be 25x, etc.). That is a lot of images and each one must be handled and processed. Let's say that the images are just 1MB per each, you have 100 of them and they run only 1sec per each at 30 fps. Do the math and then try to open that many equally sized images in Photoshop. That 3000 MB's of image data. In a DV-AVI workflow, each frame is included and must be handled.
I always re-size to the exact frame dimensions of my Project, unless I am going to be panning. If DVD output is the final delivery form, there is nothing to be gained by going larger. However, there are two things that can cause problems: use of the computer's resources, and also a likely quality hit (yes, a "hit"), when the program down-sizes the material. We think that bigger is better, and more clear, when dealing with images to go to print. It is. But when we're going to DVD the output will be down-sized to fit the Project, and most NLE's are not as good at this, as is a program, like Photoshop.
Depending on what you will be doing, i.e. panning and zooming out, plan on the absolute max. size that you will need. Limit the sizes, based on that criterion. I even will re-size every "static" image down to the minimum, and keep just the ones with pan/zoom-out to their larger sizes. First, I want the re-sizing done in Photoshop and second, I want my Project to edit smoothly on my workstation.
Now, if I am doing a magazine cover, I want every single pixel that I can capture, but not for NLE work. In print work, bigger IS better.
Yesterday, before posting my previous remark, I had tried something different. I had created two slideshows in Photoshop Elements and exported these as .wmv movies. After doing this I loaded them into Premiere Elements and added menumarkers. Burning the project to DVD took well over four hours. So I decided that this wasn't the best solution.
This evening I spent a couple of hours on completely recreating the slideshow I made yesterday. Most of the time was spent on adding and positioning menumarkers and custom titels. This time it worked just fine. No more problems with out of memory errors and encoding was superfast. This time it took about twenty minutes. As a bonus the pictures seem to be slightly sharper than they did on the previous version I made.
I would like to thank both of you for your hints and tips. I was just wondering what image size would be enough for encoding to DVD. This time I used 1000x750 just as grisetti suggested. Image size dropped from around 2,5 Mb to about 90 kb per photo (about 14x less information to handle). What size would you suggest Bill? How much with pan&zoom and how much without?
Steve's suggested size is very good one. It allows some zooming and panning. If you need to do more Motion, you can size up slightly for that/those particular image(s). Most of my work does not involve Motion, so I go with the Project Preset, say NTSC 4:3 with will be 720x480 with a PAR of 0.9. I'll do this in Photoshop and create an Action (if I don't already have one) to do this for an entire folder. If there is to be motion on some images, they go into a separate folder, and I'll set their resize to be exactly what I need, and agin create an Action for that folder. Steve's size suggestion is a compromise between allowing some Motion, and file size. It covers all bases in one and does keep it simple. It is a very good general rule, and has been proven to work quite well.
In my more involved specific workflow, if I later change my mind (or the client changes his/hers), guess who has to go back to the original image an re-size all over again. You got it - me. With Steve's figures, I would probably be safe with the re-sizing I had already done.
As mentioned earlier, I really like to do all re-sizing in Photoshop, as I like its control and algorithms better than in the NLE. Also, a lot of my images are also going to print output, whether for an accompanying ad, the DVD box, or whatever, so they are already in Photoshop and it's like "one-stop-shopping" for me.
If I were doing a personal slideshow, I'd go with Steve's sizes and just be done with it - his, as I said, pertty much cover all bases.
Good luck, and glad that you got the Project to build. One note, when going to something like WMV, you have introduced another set of CODECs which have to be processed by your NLE. That is where the additional time comes in.
Thanks Bill, your answer (and that of Steve) has helped me a lot. I wasn't to happy about using the WMV format but (at the time) it was the only thing that I could think of that actually worked. Unfortunately in Photoshop Elements you can't save your work in the mpeg or avi format which I would have preferred. But that doesn't matter any more because after I had resized the pictures I could create the slide show without any problems.
Sweetest words in the world, Mark.