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Do you mean MPEG Streamclip?
If it has a "No Compressor" function, that's your best option to retain quality and have minimum compatibility problems. The files will be big and won't always play back without stuttering from a standard hard drive, but will be fine for AE.
Yes, I mean MPEG Streamclip.
I can't see an option for "no compression" in the avi export. There is just a list of compression alternatives including for example: Apple Photo - JPEG (selected by default); Apple Video; H-264 Encoder....
A quick investigation of MPEG Streamclip shows me that it encodes to Quicktime and MPEG, but not to AVI.
Encode a Quicktime using the Animation codec at 100% quality to preserve maximum quality.
If the files are too large, you can try the Photo-JPEG codec at high-ish quality levels, for smaller file sizes at good (but not lossless) quality.
MPEG Streamclip does export to avi - in fact, that is why I downloaded it. It was recommended on one of the Adobe Premiere forums here and worked fine for converting DVD's to avi, which could then be imported with no problem into Premiere. (AVI is also mentioned in para 5 of the first page of the website: www.squared5.com/ )
But now I have put After Effects on my new (Vista) machine and that won't import the avi files, giving the compression error. (The avi files themselves seem ok when played through windows media player.)
I stand corrected (really didn't look that closely) but all the codecs you mentioned in your earlier post ( Apple Photo - JPEG (selected by default); Apple Video; H-264 Encoder) are Quicktime codecs, not AVI codecs.
Any reason why you wouldn't use Quicktime anyway? They're a more universally accepted and reliable format than avi.
I have now exported from MPEG Streamclip to Quicktime, as you suggested. I used the default compression "Apple Motion JPEG A" and set the "Quality" scale to 100%.
That imported into After Effects OK. So thank you for that!
I am now trying to export the version after a simple edit to DVD. (This is the first time that I have used After Effects, so it may take a while!)
I still wonder why AE didn't accept the avi file originally and whether I would get better quality if I found a way.
There's no specific advantage in avi over QT - both are just "container" formats that store video and audio. The key to preserving quality is to use a lossless compression format. My earlier post mentioning codecs stands.
I suspect your avi attempts didn't work because there's some format mix-up occurring in the encoder. After Effects (or any other application) would be unlikely to encode an avi file that has been encoded with QT-specific codecs.
I appreciate your help.
I hadn't noticed until I tried a second clip (with dialogue to camera) that the initial export to QuickTime produces out of synch audio! It looks like this is going to be a major project to sort out, but for me it is only a small part of something bigger so I can't spend much more time on the process. I am thinking that I will have to abandon After Effects and get Premiere for Vista instead.
All I wanted to do was take material from DVD's, edit them in After Effects and export them again to DVD's. Surely that isn't unusual, yet it seems so complex with one problem nestled inside another.
If I forget about MPEG Streamclip, is there a simple way that can be recommended to work?
Not really. All other "Rippers" are bound by the same limitations which mostly boiuls down to Vista, Vista 64 and XP 64 not supporting certain DirectDraw based AVI sub-formats. You could try to convert the AVI in one more step using additional tools such as SUPER© or VirtualDub, though. extracting audio is not as problematic and since you don't seem to need it for what you do in AE, I wouldn't worry about it. You can always re-align your video and audio much more comfortable in the edit suite (if indeed this is part of a bigger project).
In my Windows days I used to use VirtualDub, and as Mylenium says, would occasionally need to slip audio sync in a NLE.
Can you please tell me how I split the audio and video tracks in AE to bring them into correct alignment? (My previous experience is on Premiere where they are separated to begin with.) Also, I don't know what the abbreviation NLE means.
Please be advised that your problems
be the result of using AE 7.0 on Vista, which isn't supported.
Also, AE CS3 has totally re-written handling of import of different codecs and containers, especially improved MPEG support.
- Jonas Hummelstrand
NLE = Non-linear editor = all current editing programs.
Duplicate the layer and turn off the eyeball switch on one layer and the speaker switch on the other.
- Jonas Hummelstrand
I'm definitely no expert but you can easily do that with Premier.
Let me know if you have a suggestion for my problem:
my avi files I import into AE end up glitching so that the frames jump to random time locations. suchas frame 1002 will jump to frame 45. Of course it does this after I've been working on the movie for an hour.
I don't have this problem with mov files.
Is AE compatible with avi files? should I use mov files instead? When I use premier to convert avi to mov, the file size is exponentially larger and quality degrades a bunch.
AVI files work fine in AE and you shouldn't get any problems. Please start a new thread and describe your problems, your versions of AE, the OS and QuickTime, plus what codecs, framerates and bit depths you are rendering to. We'll help you out in the new thread!
The size of files rendered with different codecs depend on the amount and quality of compression. Tell us (in the new thread) what your final output is and you'll get recommendations on what to use!
- Jonas Hummelstrand