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>1) Could someone outline what does and doesn't maintain it's efficient >vector format when converted to an swf in AE CS3?
Masks on solids; text layers; Radio Waves, Path Text, Audio Waveform, and Audio Spectrum effects; Illustrator files
>2) What about illustrator files brought into AE? Are they treated the
>same as vectors created in Flash (keeping their vector form even when
>animated and the scene is exported as an swf)?
Under the right conditions - yes.
>3) If I use a bitmapped background, but all foreground elements are
>vectors, does the swf just store the bg once (adds to the file
>size), but then has no other detrimental effect to the file size?
If the bg is a static image, it should.
For more info check here:
Thanks. Will unsupported features simply be bitmapped and add to the file size, or ignored and not appear?
> Will unsupported features simply be bitmapped and add to
> the file size, or ignored and not appear?
You can choose, as described in the "Render and export a composition as a SWF file" section of After Effects Help.
"You can choose to ignore these unsupported items so that the SWF file includes only the After Effects features that can be converted into native SWF elements, or you can choose to rasterize frames that contain unsupported features and add them to the SWF file as JPEG-compressed bitmap images, which may reduce the efficiency of the SWF file."