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Video Match Frame into Loop Not Smooth


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Hi all, I’m having an issue with a few moments in the show I am programming, where the designer has created a file that brings in a piece of content (i.e. Snow particles) and that video ends on a frame which is identical to the first frame of the following video, which is a loop. Let’s call them “snow-in” and “snow-loop.”

At time 00:15.00, let’s say, “snow-in” runs for 25 seconds on layer 4, then “snow-loop” starts on layer 3 at 00:40.0 (and when I drag “snow-loop” to confirm it’s starting exactly at the end of “snow-in”, I do get the “snapping” line). In my mind, Watchout should finish playing “snow-in” on its final frame, and immediately begin playing “snow-loop” on the layer below. However, this isn’t actually the case. There’s a flash where it looks like it’s going to black frame, but if I move the “snow-loop” to have slight overlap (0.05) there is no change, but if I start it 0.1 seconds early, it’s obvious it isn’t the same frame. Am I wrong about how this should work with content starting playback? Is Watchout just not capable of being frame accurate like this?  (I tried to do a 0.2 second cross-fade but it looks bad too.) 

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15 hours ago, jfk said:

How are your movies encoded?

I have seen what you describe occur with mpeg encoding that uses bi-directional frames. (which Dataton specifically indicates should not be used.) The Main Concept decoder will play starting frames out of order when B-frames are used.

https://knowledge.dataton.com/knowledge/how-to-encode

 

They’re all Hap renders, so I don’t think that should be what’s happening.

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What are your computer specs, how fast is your SSD drive, how many outputs are you using in which resolution, which version of WATCHOUT are you using and how large (px) are your files?

I've played HAP files back-to-back without any issues for years and have only seen black frames when either the video file had an unintentional black frame or when trying to loop a file through control cues sitting outside the video cue rectangle.

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It’s a ShowSage display machine with an i9 intel processor at 3.5GHz, 32GB of RAM, and a Radeon Pro WX 9100 graphics card.

They are decently sized files as we are filling the entire space over 4 projectors; content is 6762x1042 pixels at 30fps. 

I think this same problem is actually happening on other cues as well, where sometimes there is just a delay in playing the video. There’s a piece of content where we do a .5 second crossfade and occasionally it seems to just pop on a little late, after the playhead has run past the fade-in. On another section, a video which is identical to a bunch of others in the same sequence just has a slight delay between trigger and playback. 

I replaced the display computer on Tuesday with a new but identical machine, and am still having the same issues, so I don’t think it was just a problem with cache or something.

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From the specs, the server should be fast enough I guess.

Maybe you could contact ShowSage and give them a little test show to double check on their side too.

Another thing to check could be your network. May sound a bit odd but the production computer is sending out strings to the server and if those get delayed somehow or the WATCHOUT heartbeat doesn't get through correctly it might cause issues as well. I've seen installations where in the end a cheap network cable was the reason for issues and also switches can sometimes bring in trouble.

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On 11/11/2021 at 8:18 PM, anjawithaj said:

Hi all, I’m having an issue with a few moments in the show I am programming, where the designer has created a file that brings in a piece of content (i.e. Snow particles) and that video ends on a frame which is identical to the first frame of the following video, which is a loop. Let’s call them “snow-in” and “snow-loop.”

At time 00:15.00, let’s say, “snow-in” runs for 25 seconds on layer 4, then “snow-loop” starts on layer 3 at 00:40.0 (and when I drag “snow-loop” to confirm it’s starting exactly at the end of “snow-in”, I do get the “snapping” line). In my mind, Watchout should finish playing “snow-in” on its final frame, and immediately begin playing “snow-loop” on the layer below. However, this isn’t actually the case. There’s a flash where it looks like it’s going to black frame, but if I move the “snow-loop” to have slight overlap (0.05) there is no change, but if I start it 0.1 seconds early, it’s obvious it isn’t the same frame. Am I wrong about how this should work with content starting playback? Is Watchout just not capable of being frame accurate like this?  (I tried to do a 0.2 second cross-fade but it looks bad too.) 

———————

I have to chime in here, of course. With my advice to not try looping in WO. That flashing Black you see is actually transparency, place a bright color on a layer beneath the looping points. You will see this flashing instead of black. 

I tried this with images, videos… doesnt matter, It wont loop seamlessly. 

 

So here is the actual advice, make the sequences you want to loop really long, so they dont have to loop as a sequence but playback the looping clips.

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Since your content is large it still has a lot to load so there may need to be a lot more pre-roll than a second or two. Even though HAP can be unconventional sizes, I always still try and presplit content to more standard resolutions. Or at least try to keep your content divisible by 8 for some reason, I always seem to also have less issues when sticking to that rule.

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