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When you import a JPEG, Director gives you the choice of importing at the color depth of the Stage. At author-time, the color depth of the Stage is set by the color depth of the main monitor. If you set your monitor to 16-bit color (thousands of colors), then import your 100 images, you can select:
Color Depth: ...
(o) Stage (16 bits)
[x] Same Settings for Remaining Images
You can then set the monitor back to 32-bit color (millions of colors), and continue with your work.
Does this help?
Thanks OS, that explains what I can do. I'll try it when I get home tonight.
But changing my monitor will re-arrange all my desktop icons and not something I want to do every time I need to import quantities of new bitmaps, which is a lot. I reduce the size of my movie by half by making 32 bit images into 16 bit without any noticeable loss of quality, is why I do this. I've always had my monitor set at millions of colors - almost as long as I've used Director and never had to do this before. So it's a big hassle.
Venting now: To me this is another of many big problems this version of Director (11) has thrown up as a barrier to working quickly that were never a problem in earlier versions. (Admittedly it's been a long time since I've been using the latest Director. I'll be asking how to resolve a long list of other issues soon - I'm re-learning)
Still a mystery is: how is this helpful? Wouldn't it be more helpful if Director allowed users to choose movie color depth, so users aren't forced through this work-around using my OS/hardware? ;0) I liked the way it worked before, but I'm curious as to why it's now like this....
Thanks for taking the time to help.
...changing my monitor will re-arrange all my desktop icons and not something I want to do every time...
I can understand that your desktop icons might be rearranged if you changed the dimensions of your monitor. Does it all happen if you simply change the color depth?
I reduce the size of my movie by half by making 32 bit images into 16 bit without any noticeable loss of quality...
You reduce the size of the *.dir version of your movie, because the unprotected movie includes the pixel-by-pixel information for each image, so that you can edit it in the Paint window. When you publish your movie and compress the files to *.dcr or *.cct format, everything but the original JPEG data is stripped out (unless you edited the images), so the fact that your images were imported at 16-bit depth will have little to no effect.
I just tested this. I imported the same 4 JPEG images into two different movies, one when the monitor was set to 32-bit color, one when it was set to 16-bit color. I arranged the bitmap sprites on the Stage in the same way. I saved and compressed both movies after importing the images. Both movies contained nothing else, and I did not edit the images. I then used Xtras | Update... to convert each of the movies to *.dxr format, and File | Publish... to convert each to *.dcr format. Here are my results:
Bit-depth *.dir *.dxr *.dcr
32-bit 1.7 MB 1.7 MB 72 KB
16-bit 960 KB 888 KB 72 KB
As you can see, the size of the compressed *.dcr file is the same. No benefit was gained by jumping through all the hoops of importing the images at 16-bit color depth.
Actually, that's not quite true: the difference between size of the two movies is in fact 1,444 bytes (73,099 bytes for the 32-bit movie, 71,655 bytes for the 16-bit movie). However, the image quality is identical. ( I took a screenshot of each, and overlaid them using reverse ink for the top image: the result was pure white).
The moral of the story is: don't edit your images in Director, do use *.dcr compression, and don't worry about the size of the *.dir file.
Thanks for the indepth reply OS. .dcr files are the obvious way to go for export. You're right - it's only changing monitor resolution that alters the desktop.
Guess I was hoping there was a pref I'd overlooked, because the physical size of my movies is important. I still want to be able to retro-change movies already created to 16 bit, if there's a way. Otherwise, it's back to endlessly tapping the Enter key again to go through the warning message.
I realize with my cell-type animations that I don't use Director in a typical way, or even in the way it's intended. (Whatever that is). I want my .dir files to be as small as possible to take up less space on my harddrive and in my archives. And why not, if theres no difference in quality?
As you can see in a separate post, my file sizes are apparently too big for Director to handle. It used to be .dir size was limited only by what fit on an archive CD (650mb) Now I want bigger movies. So .dir file size is important.
Anyway, maybe that's all she wrote for this issue. thanks for your time.