Although nearly every new user will already know what on essential addition to their multimedia creation environment CineWorks is, and have a good idea of the results possible with the package, we shall start with a short overview of what the package aims to achieve.
CineWorks is a RISC OS application to enable digital movie clips to be edited into a single digital movie sequence. The standard type of digital movie clips that CineWorks operates with are known as Acorn Replay Movies or ARMovies.
In addition to simple editing CineWorks is able to perform a whole host of effects with ARMovies. These include transparent overlaying, special video effects, transition cuts and chroma keying. Different formats of digital movie may also be imported, including the leading industry standard, MPEG.
During the last few years multimedia has become one of the hottest topics in the computer industry. Multimedia, as the name suggests, allows access and control of multiple media formats using a computer. Different media may include video, sound, music, text and graphics.
When designing Replay, Acorn took a great step forward into the multimedia world, at about the same time as Apple released QuickTime for the Mac and Microsoft released Video for Windows.
All three formats are predominantly used to store mid-quality, low resolution movies for playback at reasonable speed on computers without additional playback hardware.
A standard one minute video clip can use 30Mb of hard disc space. In order to reduce this to a more manageable size, compression techniques are used. Principally Moving Block compression is used with Acorn Replay, which replaced the original Moving Line compression. Depending upon the compression parameters set, movies con normally be compressed to around 5-20% of their original size.
For use with digital TV, the standard format is MPEG. This is vastly superior to Replay, QuickTime and AVI, but cannot be played at a reasonable frame rate without the use of an MPEG decoder Chip.
MPEG can now store mare than an hour of video on a CD-ROM, at a quality that can hardly be distinguished from VHS video.
With the advent of Replay, a whole new world opens up for the average Acorn user: Production of desktop video, for inclusion in multimedia presentations, games or educational programs, the possibilities are endless. CineWorks makes movie editing possible for everyone by offering a wealth features designed to produce even better and more spectacular ARMovies.
CineWorks allows ARMovie clips to be quickly edited and combined into impressive movies by means of a simple but clever timeline display.
This timeline supports:
CineWorks is very flexible. it is able to accept any type of ARMovie (providing your copy of ARMovie is capable of playing them), and can generate ARMovies in virtually any format. with hardly any limitations.
* Due to the 24Mb per task limit of RISC OS 3.5, movies with more than 2000000 pixels (eg 1600 x 1200) cannot be created. To produce a full screen PAL movie (768 x 576), you'll require at least 16-20Mb of RAM, and a large amount of disc space.
As you can see, your computer will run out of memory, hard disc space or processor time a long time before any limitations would be imposed by CineWorks. Therefore any future developments in Acorn hardware, will automatically be exploited by CineWorks.
Draw files, sound samples and sprites con all be installed for use within CineWorks, you may also import any ChangeFSI compatible file, but more importantly - industry standard MPEG, QuickTime and AVI movies.
The aspect of ARMovies which first grabs most peoples attention is their size, in comparison to many other files they are very large. This presents an obvious problem when it comes to editing them, where, unlike other smaller files they cannot be simply loaded into memory due to lack of RAM on the average Risc PC.
CineWorks resolves this problem by creating small cached thumbnail versions of the clips being used, many of which may be stored in memory. These cached clips are then used for editing purposes within the timeline.
At any moment during your editing session you may play a real-time preview, which will give a good impression of the final movie. When you are happy with the preview, CineWorks will then create the final ARMovie. This process takes a short while.
Before you learn how to operate the timeline you should understand the basic principles behind it. The example below shows four video clips positioned on three timeline tracks. They have been labelled with numbers on the diagram, but normally the full colour thumbnails allow you to recognise the clips without labelling.
For basic cuts between clips without translucent settings or transitions, the track with the highest number has priority over the tracks below it. Therefore the above timeline will generate the following movie:
This resulting movie starts on track 1 with clip 1, it then cuts to track 2 with clip 2, then track 3 with clip 3, followed by track 2 with clip 4 and finally back to track 1 with clip 1 again.
It is pretty much a WYSIWYG system, therefore only the first few seconds and the last few seconds of clip 1 will be seen, rather that the whole of clip 1 at the start and the whole of clip 1 again at the end.
You may find when you start editing a movie with new clips, that you often only want to use a smaller portion of the clip. This is particularly true with clips that were made using a video capture card, as it is difficult to start grabbing the ARMovie clip at exactly the right moment.
Cuing enables you to create a clip on the timeline which cues, or becomes visible, at the part of the ARMovie which you have selected, and stops being visible on a particular frame.
For example your clip may have a brief unwanted camera shot at the beginning, and a camera shake at the end. Therefore you probably would only require the clip to cue-in after the first shot and to cue-out just before the camera shake starts.
A key feature of the timeline is the ability to use clips which have cuing times set. When cuing is set, the thumbnail clips appear on the timeline only for the part between the two cue points, the other parts of the clip will not be used or displayed.
CineWorks is supplied on a number of high density discs, and it can only be installed from these discs onto a Risc PC. This process is explained fully on the separate installation sheet.
!ARMovie and !ARWork are required by CineWorks. !ARMovie is present on the hard disc drive of your Risc PC (!Boot.Resources), If your copy has been deleted or damaged you will need to acquire a new one. !ARWork can be installed during CineWorks installation, however if you already have a copy installed by another package eg. Irlam's 24i16 software you may let CineWorks share !ARWork by making sure it has been seen before loading CineWorks.
The 'CineClips CD' contains many ARMovie clips for use with CineWorks. The discs supplied contain work files which relate to the clips. No part of the CD need be installed.
Loading CineWorks is a simple process, as with most applications you simply double click on its icon. A loading panel will appear whilst the program is loading which shows the name of the registered user.
If you haven't chosen to install the !ARWork application in the same directory as CineWorks, you must locate it first. Until it has been seen, CineWorks is unable to function.
Once CineWorks has loaded you may choose one of the iconbar menu options, accessed by clicking menu over the CineWorks iconbar icon.
Info gives details about your particular copy of CineWorks, including the version number, and details of the registered user.
A new editing session is initiated by selecting Create... this is detailed overleaf.
You may open the audio and video clip Libraries... these are explained in chapter 5.
You may adjust CineWorks' default settings by selecting the Choices... option, which is detailed in chapter 16.
The CineWorks application will leave the desktop when Quit is selected.
Selecting the Create... option or simply clicking the CineWorks Iconbar icon will open the Create new movie window.
Here you may define the characteristics of the final movie you wish to create. The default settings are shown above, for day to day use you are most likely to adjust only the length and frame rate of the movie. The maximum configurations and other limitations for the various options are detailed on the Specifications page in chapter 1.
When you are happy with the setting, click the Create action button which will open the Timeline window.
Once the timeline has opened, the Create... option on the Iconbar menu becomes unselectable, since it is not practical for CineWorks to edit more than one movie simultaneously.
Many of the important editing options and features of CineWorks are accessed from what we shall refer to as the 'Main menu'. This is opened by clicking menu over the Timeline window.
General file options relating to the movie currently been edited are found in the File submenu, which is accessed from the Main menu.
The current parameters of the movie, and it's expected file size are shown.
Supplied triggers are able to make a full screen display of the movie, possibly for use with genlock hardware, but additionally can trigger code to create AVI and MPEG video files. This is explained further in chapter 13.
Strictly speaking, the title of this section is not correct, although most users would expect to find the information given here under a title of 'Loading'. ARMovies, which may consist of either audio, video of both, are never actually loaded into memory in their entirety. Instead a small thumbnail version is cached into the ARWork folder, this is what you see on the timeline, and is used for all editing purposes. When the final edited ARMovie is created, all editing that has taken place is then applied to the real clips, to result in a high quality finished movie.
It is extremely important to ensure that CLIPS USED IN CINEWORKS ARE NEVER MOVED, RENAMED OR DELETED while they are in use.
Any clips you wish to place on the CineWorks timeline must be installed into the library either by the user or automatically. The automated installation is essentially a short cut, and is described in the next chapter. For the rest of this chapter the discussion will focus only on clip installation by the user.
CineWorks has two libraries, one for video clips and another for audio clips. To open both of these libraries choose the Libraries... item from the iconbar menu. or click the iconbar icon with Shift-Select.
As default, the CineWorks libraries will be empty. To install ARMovies you simply drag the file icons to either of the libraries. It doesn't really matter which, as CineWorks will automatically install them in the correct library.
Once installed, ARMovie video clips will appear in the video library, and audio clips in the audio library. Clips containing the audio and video, will be separated into their two component parts, and appear in both libraries.
The caching process, or creation of thumbnails, takes a short while, when installing new clips. If you prefer not to wait, you may turn the caching feature off (see chapter 20 Choices), although ease of editing may be adversely effected, including the loss of the real-time preview feature.
Once an ARMovie has been installed into the library it appears as shown below, along with general information about the clip.
Various facilities are then available from the library menus, which are accessed by clicking menu over the appropriate library. The menu for each library functions in the same manner, but will effect only the clips stored within it.
The advantage of permanently storing cache data is that commonly used clips, will not need to be cached each time CineWorks is loaded.
Note that the permanent storage feature is not available for audio clips, where cache data is minimal.
So again, it is therefore important to ensure that CLIPS USED IN CINEWORKS ARE NEVER MOVED, RENAMED OR DELETED.
Up until now, we have talked only about installing ARMovies into the CineWorks libraries. Installing other foreign files is very straight forward, because, as with ARMovies you simply drag the file icons to the appropriate library to install them.
Armadeus, AudioWorks, WAV, VOC, SOU and SND sound files may be imported, and once installed will behave in an identical manner to sound from an ARMovie.
Graphic images may be imported to CineWorks, which may then be Used in movies as stationary frames, maybe for titling. Alternatively, they may be scaled and rotated by the path editor to make them animated. CineWorks will accept single graphic images. These may be Drawfiles, Spritefiles containing a single sprite, or any ChangeFSI acceptable format, including JPEG, GIF and TIFF.
Spritefiles containing more than one sprite may also be imported and used as animations. Normally the sprites contained within the spritefile will be of the same size and definition.
Alternatively a textfile may be imported, containing a list of the path names of spritefiles, which can then be used as an animation. The first line of the textfile must be the string CINEWORKS, and the second line must be the string SPRITELIST.
A folder containing two Drawfiles named 1 and 2 may be imported, an inbetween animation will then be calculated by CineWorks. The two drawfiles should be very similar in that objects should only have been moved. rotated or scaled, and there should not be any additional or re- coloured objects.
MPEG, AVI, QuickTime, AceFilms and FLI movie formats may all be imported. CineWorks achieves this by first converting these files to ARMovies. The file should be dragged to the appropriate library, and CineWorks will then process the file and open a standard savebox when finished. The ARMovie which is created should be saved, and then installed to the library in the normal way.
Notes on MPEG: Compressed MPEG files will require a proportionately large amount of disc space to explode. For example a 5Mb MPEG movie may become 50Mb or more.
Notes on Sprites: For best results sprites should contain at least 256 colours. The sprite may be bigger or smaller then the size of the replay frame, and any mask present will be preserved and used.
Notes on Drawfiles: Unpredictable results may occur with drawfiles Containing sprites. The white background of a drawfile will always become transparent.
A skeleton frame outline can be exported from CineWorks as a drawfile. This may be used to indicate where to place the drawing on the drawfile page. See Utilities chapter 14.
Once a movie editing session has been initiated using the Create new movie window, or a Cine file of a previous session has been loaded, the timeline window will open. If this window is closed, it may be reopened by clicking the CineWorks icon on the iconbar.
The example below illustrates a timeline of four video tracks and two audio tracks. As default, the video tracks are numbered 1 to 4, with track 4 being at the top of the display and track 1 at the bottom. Likewise with the audio tracks, which are positioned below the video tracks.
Time runs, as you might expect, from left to right. The timeline above shows the first 35 frames of the movie; you may scroll or resize the window to view the rest of the movie. Zoom in and out buttons are provided to increase or decrease, respectively, the timeline horizontal scale.
At the top of the Timeline window is a 'timecode ruler'. This allows clips to be positioned accurately, and it's setting may be changed to show time in different formats (see Choices chapter). The default setting, and the one shown here, represents time in terms of frame numbers, but representation in hours, minutes and seconds is also possible.
The timecode ruler also features two control mechanisms. These are - The Current frame marker, indicated by a red arrow, and the selected frames slider, indicated by a green bar.
The current frame marker is positioned simply by clicking select on the upper part of the timecode ruler, or by pressing select anywhere else in the timeline.
To position the selected frames slider, move the pointer to the timecode ruler, level with the slider. The mouse pointer will change shape, and now clicking select will position the 'start of selection' point, and clicking adjust will position the 'end of selection' point. Double clicking select will select the entire movie.
At the base of the window is a toolbar giving easy access to six fundamental features. From left to right they are:
Alongside the toolbar, information is given about what operation is currently being executed, for example 'moving clip', in addition to details of the track over which the pointer is currently positioned.
If two audio channels are being used, when the pointer is over an audio clip, either channel left or right will also be displayed here.
Clips may be dragged from either library to the timeline for use within CineWorks. Each clip should be dragged to the desired track, at an appropriate time position. Alternatively, as a short cut, the file icons of suitable clips may be dragged directly to the timeline, from the directory display. The clips will then be automatically inserted into the library.
Once a clip has been positioned on the timeline, it will appear as shown above. As default there will be no cuing or effects set, and the speed setting will be 100%.
Clips may be moved back and forth along the current timeline track by dragging. Guidelines are provided, and a message 'moving clip' will be displayed, to help make positioning easier. It is not possible, or desirable to overlay two clips on the same track, and CineWorks will prevent this occurring.
To move a clip to another track on the timeline, the clip should be dragged whilst pressing the Shift key. Similarly a clip may be copied with it's current characteristics, to elsewhere on the same track, or to another track by dragging whilst pressing the Ctrl key.
|SUMMARY OF POSITIONING KEY COMBINATIONS|
|DRAG||Moves a clip around on it's original track|
|SHIFT - DRAG||Moves a clip to anywhere on the timeline|
|CTRL - DRAG||Copies a clip, with current characteristics|
|ESC||Aborts the current dragging operation|
At either side of each clip on the timeline, there is a 'control bar'. By dragging the upper part of this bar, the cueing of the clip will be adjusted. Dragging the lower part of the control bar enables transitions to be set, which are explained in the next chapter.
As mentioned in chapter 2, cuing is a feature which allows a segment of a large clip to be used, and displayed on the timeline. This enables the ends of the clip to be trimmed, leaving only the part which is required for Use within the final movie.
When a new clip is placed on the timeline, by default the incue point is set at the start of the clip, and the outcue point at the end. Therefore the whole of the clip, from start to end will be displayed. Dragging the left hand control bar will set a new incue point, and the right control bar will set a new outcue point, effectively trimming the edges of the clip away.
Once a clip has been trimmed in this manner, the control bars may be dragged back out again, to reveal the part of the clip which has been previously trimmed away. CineWorks will not allow a cue point to be set, such that the clip will overlap the edge of another clip on same track.
Double clicking a clip while holding the Shift key will open the View clip window, which allows cueing points to be set more accurately.
The window displays a preview of the selected clip and provides video style controls for viewing the clip, along with controls for setting new cueing points.
Start the clip preview by clicking the Play button. The clip will loop continuously until interrupted by clicking either the Stop or Pause buttons.
The Change direction buttons allow the clip to be played either forwards or backwards at normal speed. However the clip may be played slowly in either direction using the Slow motion buttons, or even a single frame at a time using the Frame advance buttons.
The clip position may also be controlled by dragging the slider bar, positioned just below the clip display area. Using a combination of these controls the clip may be set to the frames where incue, and outcue points are required.
In the top right hand corner of the window, there are buttons for tagging the incue, and outcue points. Simply move to the frame where an incue point is required, and click the Tag incue button. Next select the frame where an outcue point is required, and click the Tag outcue button. When the cuing points have been correctly tagged, click the Set timing button; the cue points will now be set, and the window will close.
By dragging the control bars whilst holding the shift key, it is possible to set the actual start and end of the clip, whilst retaining the incue and outcue points. This results in the clip being either squashed or stretched, and while the clip occupies the some space on the timeline, the visible segment of the clip is different. The diagram below helps to illustrate this.
By dragging the control bars whilst holding the Ctrl key, it is possible to move both the start of the clip together with the incue, and the end of the clip together with the outcue. Again this results in the clip being squashed or stretched, but the whole of the clip will be visible on the timeline. This is illustrated below.
Note that a change in the speed of the clip is a result of stretching or squashing a clip in this way. This may be desirable in some cases, but undesirable where the clip is to remain at 100% speed.
By dragging the clip, rather than the control bars, whilst holding the Shift and Ctrl keys will simultaneously move the incue and outcue points between the start and end of the clip.
|SUMMARY OF CUEING KEY COMBINATIONS|
|DRAGGING CONTROL BARS|
|DRAG||Moves incue or outcue point, speed constant|
|SHIFT - DRAG||Moves start or end, speed altered|
|CTRL - DRAG||Moves cue point and start or end, speed altered|
|SHIFT-CTRL - DRAG||Moves the cue points together, speed constant|
|ESC||Aborts current dragging operation|
Clip positioning and cue setting, for audio clips is very similar to the procedure for video clips. There is, however, one fundamental difference between audio and video clip handling on the timeline. As explained in section 2.2, a video clip which overlaps a clip on a lower track is given priority. With audio tracks, this is not the case. Instead audio clips are handled in a manner which imitates a multi track recording studio, where the audio signals from each track are mixed together to produce the final soundtrack.
Audio clips appear on the timeline when cached as thumbnail waveforms, along with the clip name and a 'volume curve'. The volume curve, which is red as default allows control over the audio volume for the clip.
To set the volume of the audio clip, the volume curve is dragged vertically. When the volume curve is positioned centrally in the clip, the clip volume will be 100%. The volume may be decreased to 0% by dragging the volume curve below this point, and up to 200% by dragging above the central point. At volumes of over 100% an oversampling effect may occur.
To set an audio volume fade in or fade out, four control points are provided on the volume curve. These points should be dragged horizontally to set the duration of the fade. In the example above, a long fade in and short fade out has been set.
Various shortcuts to menu options may be accessed by double clicking on timeline clips; here is a summary:
|SUMMARY OF VIDEO CLIP DOUBLE CLICK SHORTCUTS|
|SELECT||Opens the Clip control window|
|ADJUST||Opens the Clip position window|
|SHIFT - SELECT||Opens the View clip window or cueing control|
|CTRL - SELECT||Plays video clip or displays still image|
|SUMMARY OF AUDIO CLIP DOUBLE CLICK SHORTCUTS|
|ADJUST||Opens the Clip position window|
|SHIFT - SELECT||Executes sample either by playing it as an ARMovie
(video and audio),|
or by hotlinking to Armadeus or AudioWorks if loaded
|CTRL - SELECT||Plays audio clip|
|DRAG||Moves a clip around on it's original track|
Video clips used on the timeline will by default be cut sharply from one to another, as described in section 2.2. To make video clips a little more interesting, and professional, transitions are used. The term 'transition' in CineWorks covers a large range of different wipes and fades.
At either side of each video clip is a control bar. The upper part of the control bar is used to adjust clip cueing, but the lower part will, when dragged inwards, define a 'transition period'.
Once the transition period has been defined, it will contain the words 'in transition', indicating that a transition has not yet been set. This area will display the name of any transition which has been applied.
To choose a particular transition, open the Transition window by clicking the Transition toolbar button, choosing Transitions from the Utilities submenu, or by clicking the transition period whilst holding the Ctrl key.
The Transitions window contains a large number of transitions which are each given a name, description and a draggable icon. The transition is applied to the clip by dragging the icon to the transition period for that clip.
Depending on the particular transition, an interesting method of fading will be used to display the new clip, whilst wiping the clip that was previously displayed.
Although multiple transitions may be defined, only one transition may be performed simultaneously, and multiple transitions will result in consecutive operation. To achieve the effect of two transitions occurring simultaneously, on ARMovie featuring the first transition may be created, and then used as a clip to which another transition is applied.
Some transitions may have options, to control parameters such as wipe direction. These options are accessed by double clicking on the transition period, once the relevant transition has been set.
These transitions normally perform an animation of some kind. Describing them textually is difficult, However CineWorks provides a Preview Information window, so full text descriptions are not necessary.
To open the Preview transition window, double click the icon of the transition which is to be previewed, or alternatively click the transition period whilst holding the Shift key.
The current transition. If applicable, may be previewed using frames of the clip to which it is applied. This is achieved by clicking the Use frames option.
The transition preview is animated by dragging the slider in the Preview transition window.
Selecting the Track submenu from the Main menu, when over a timeline track, gives access to operations for that particular track.
Depending on the track type, one of the adjacent menus will open. The menu on the left is for video track 1, and on the right is for audio track 1. As you can see, apart from the items of the top, the menus are identical.
The default track type is Full colour. When selected the track will behave in a manner that could be described as 'normal'. The clips will appear in the final movie in their original state, with any effects that may have been applied.
Video mask and Genlock mask tracks are similar to each other in concept. These tracks use regular clips, and are edited in the same way as clips on full colour tracks. The difference is that the final output will ignore all colour components of the clips on these tracks, and instead, use only the transparent or masked parts of the clips to affect one or more full colour tracks.
A video mask track allows clips to be masked and then overflowed onto other clips, whereas a genlock mask track allows clips to be masked and overlaid onto a live video image, using video genlock hardware. The options in the Plot type window are often used in conjunction with video and genlock masks.
Other options in the Video track window are to Lock Clips to full frame and Lock speed. Locking a clip to full frame prevents it being scrolled when an ARMovie is produced. Locking the speed of a clip, prevents only stretching or squashing of the clip, and it will always be replayed at 100% speed.
New tracks are always positioned above existing tracks.
Clips on the timeline may be 'selected' by clicking them. Additional clips may be added to the selection by clicking them with Adjust.
Once a selection has been made, the Selection submenu will become accessible from the Main menu. The items in this menu will perform operations on the currently selected clips.
When aligning clips, note that only one clip from each track may be aligned, as two clips cannot occupy the same timeline position.
The video Clip submenu is accessed from the Main menu, and gives control of the individual video clip over which the menu was opened.
The units of time to be used for positioning may be selected, by choosing one of the three radio buttons in this window.
The End positions may be represented as an offset to the start positions by selecting the End is relative to start option.
Clicking the Default action button will set the clip positions to their default values, as they were when the clip was first placed on the timeline.
For instance, when making a 12.5 fps movie, a 15 fps clip will have some frames missed, and a 10 fps clip will have some frames shown twice. This automatic feature avoids inherent flashing.
The audio Clip submenu is accessed from the Main menu, and gives control of the individual audio clip over which the menu was opened.
The audio Clip submenu is similar to the video Clip submenu, thus most of the menu items are common descriptions.
CineWorks is able to apply a large number of special effects, and characteristic changes to each individual clip on the timeline. Control of many of these features is obtained from the Clip control window, which is opened by choosing the Control... item from the Clip submenu, or simply by double clicking the clip on the timeline.
Each of the six buttons in this window, when clicked, will open a window controlling a specific aspect about that particular clip. Each of these control windows are summarised below, but are explained in more depth later on.
Any characteristic changes made to a particular clip, will only be applied to that occurrence of the clip. Therefore If the same clip is used a second time on the timeline, It will not be affected unless it was copied.
Effects should be selected in this window by clicking the appropriate option button, and then clicking the OK action button when finished.
The Keying window permits the opacity, or transparency, of a clip to be adjusted, and allows a mask key to be set. The transparency of the whole image, or an unmasked part of the image is adjusted using the Opacity slider. This allows overlaid clips to appear translucent.
In order to set a mask key, first the key type should be selected from the popup menu. Available key types are Colour (RGB) which sets a mask key for different RGB colour values, Chromo (Hue) which sets a mask key for different hue values, and Luma which sets a mask key for different brightness values. Choosing No key, will remove only mask on the image.
Once the key type has been selected, if either a Colour or Chromo key type has been chosen, a basic colour range must be selected. This may be sampled from the clip itself, by clicking the required colour on the pre- keying preview, or by clicking the key colour icon, which will open a standard colour selection window.
After the key type, and it's range has been set up, all colours within the range will become masked. The range may be increased by moving the Similarity slider to the left, thus reducing the similarity percentage, and vice versa.
If a Luma key type has been selected, the chosen colour is considered in terms of its brightness rather than its colour component. The Similarity slider then adjusts how bright parts of the image need to be, before they become masked by the key.
The results of all the above operations are visible in the Post keying preview, the visible frame may be adjusted by moving the slider below the pre-keying preview.
The Colour control window provides straightforward control over the colour, brightness and contrast of the clip. For each component a slider is provided, allowing a volume to be set between 0% to 200%. --IMG??
Two previews are provided, one displaying the original clip, and the other showing the effect of the colour changes. The displayed frame may be changed by dragging the position slider.
The colour controls are dynamic, in that they may vary throughout the clip. They might be used, for instance, to make the clip fade from full colour to greyscale. Therefore the Start and End radio options should be used to set two control values, which should be identical if dynamic colour control is not required.
The Path editor provides facilities for predefining a path which the clip will follow. The path may lead the clip in and out of the visible area of the final movie, and in the process the clip may be rotated and scaled.
The path is defined by up to nine 'guide frames' numbered 0-8. The clip will start in the position of guide frame 0, moving to each defined guide frame position in turn, until the last is reached.
The visible area of the finished movie is represented as a thick blue frame, whereas the clip guide frames and genlock are red when selected. A guide frame may be repositioned by clicking to select it, then dragging.
In the example above, the clip starts in position 0, and finishes in position 3, following the path illustrated by the arrows. The clip is only visible when passing through the movie visible area.
When a new path has been defined, the Make Path button must be clicked, in order to store the path. If the path has been incorrectly set, clicking the Cancel button will close the window, ignoring any changes.
The toolbar of the Path editor window contains buttons for the following facilities:
When the Absolute radio option is selected, the values given are in respect of the position of the movie visible area, but with Relative selected, the volumes are specific to the selected guide frame.
Continuous rotation is possible using Rotate values greater than 360°. For example, setting guide frame 0 to 360° will result in the clip spinning 10 times whilst being played.
Clicking menu over the Path editor window, opens the path editor menu, offering various editing possibilities and path editor options.
The options in the Plot type window are used in conjunction with mask and genlock tracks. CineWorks tracks have a default plot type of Force, resulting in the display of other full colour tracks, with higher track numbers having priority.
The plot options are the backbone to creating video trickery effects, involving superimposing, masking and keying. An impressive picture-in- picture effect may be created using a clip to act as a mask, a foreground clip and a background clip.
To create the picture-in-picture effect, place three clips on the timeline as shown below. The mask clip on track 2 will need to be partly transparent. A drawfile or a keyed clip would be suitable.
After positioning the clips, track 2 should be set to a mask track, and track 3 should have the plot type changed to Ignore. The mask may optionally be inverted by selecting the plot type of track 2 to Inverted instead of Force, which is the default. The results possible are shown below.
The plot options, combined with transparent, and masked clips, allow almost infinite effects to be achieved. In the window, '1' represents the current mask, and '2' represents the new mask for the selected clip. These may be combined in the following ways:
The Clip filters window receives filters dragged from the main Filters window, which is opened from the Effects submenu. The filters which are dragged to this window will be applied to the selected Clip.
Clicking menu over any installed filter opens the Filters menu, offering several options for that filter.
Filters are executed in the order that they are added to the window.
See chapter 15 for more details.
The Preview menu is accessed from the main menu and allows both video and audio tracks of the movie to be previewed in a number of ways. Note that this advanced feature does not just preview individual tracks, it previews the combined tracks of the finished movie.
The video preview feature uses the cached thumbnails, not the actual clip data, in order to achieve fast preview times. However this means that the feature is not available for uncached clips.
One limitation of the video preview feature, is that drawfiles and sprites are rendered without a mask, so it is not always possible to fully preview mask effects. However it is often possible to get a better impression of how the finished movie will look, if the key colour for the drawfile clip is set to the same colour as the background in the thumbnail of the drawfile.
Once the movie is complete, choosing the ARMovie... item from the File submenu, or clicking the ARMovie toolbar icon, will open the Create ARMovie window which allows the final movie to be created.
There are four parameters to be set before the ARMovie is saved, by dragging the file icon to a directory display.
Video format specifies the video output format of the ARMovie. There are several different formats which are summarised in the appendix. There is also a 'no video' option which saves an audio-only ARMovie.
One point worth mentioning here is that you will often want to compress on ARMovie. Only YUV movies may be compressed by the latest Moving Blocks compressor from Acorn.
The Chunk size is the amount of data that is loaded in blocks when playing on ARMovie. A bigger chunk size requires more memory for movie playback, but the playback will be smoother.
Clicking the Selected frame option, allows just frames covered by the selected frames slider to be output as an ARMovie, otherwise the entire timeline is output.
Audio format allows selection of an audio output format. The different formats are summarised in the appendix. Note that a 'no audio' option is available for silent movies.
Due to the huge size and complexity of ARMovies, CineWorks will take a while to process the clips (which may be compressed), apply effects and then create a single ARMovie. A duration of around 5 minutes should be expected for a 1 minute movie to be generated. This movie may contain 1500 frames, and be as large as 20Mb in it's uncompressed form, so it is not surprising that a reasonable amount of time is required to create it.
Since the creation process requires almost continuous disc access, multitasking is viewed to be impractical.
Choosing the Output... item from the File submenu, opens the Output window. From here if is possible to create a finished movie, but instead of saving it as an ARMovie, it is passed to what is known as a Trigger.
Triggers currently supplied with this version are:
The CineWorks trigger system is of a modular design, therefore new triggers can be added at any time. For this reason triggers contain an internal help text, which is displayed by clicking the Help... button in the Output window.
Triggers are selected from the popup menu. Some triggers require a file icon to be dragged to a directory display, after which the OK button is clicked to initiate the trigger.
Some triggers have options which are accessed by clicking the Setup... button.
Clicking the Selected frame option, allows just frames covered by the selected frames slider to be output to the trigger, otherwise the entire timeline is output.
The Utilities submenu is accessed from the Main menu, and contains several miscellaneous items which enhance the finished movie, or aid in it's creation.
The info text may be examined by applications such as !ARPlayer, and includes details such as author, copyright, date and other comments`
The Helpful sprite, which is used as an intro screen for !ARPlayer, may be changed by dragging a spritefile to the large panel on this window. Clicking the Default button sets the standard CineWorks helpful sprite.
These thumbnails are arranged in a manner similar in nature to a cartoon strip. One thumbnail is grabbed every 'n' seconds, where 'n' may be defined in the writable icon.
The format of the drawfile may be landscape, or portrait, and the paper size may be A2, A3 or A4. These forms of choices are selected using the Paper format options.
When drawfile page is full, it is saved and a new page is created.
The Effects submenu is accessed from the Main menu, and contains effects which are global to the whole movie, as opposed to individual clip effects.
Shadow... and Ghosting... effects may be turned on or off for the individual clip from the Clip control - Video effects window, although the setting is made Globally.
The Shadow effect allows the current frame to be superimposed over itself, with a definable intensity and offset. The Ghosting effect performs a similar function, but superimposes the previous frame of a set intensity and offset, onto the current frame.
To setup a shadow or ghosting effect, the grey 'A' is dragged to a point indicating the offset to the initial frame position which is indicated by the black 'A'. At the top of the window is a slider which sets the superimposing intensity.
When an ARMovie is produced and there are no clips present or visible of particular places along the timeline, a background graphic image is Used. This image may also be visible under clips which have been masked, or are smaller than the movie size.
The Background... menu item opens the Movie background window, which allows the background to be selected.
Using the radio options, choose a Colour background, the colour of Which may be selected by clicking the Set Colour button, a Sprite background which may be Scaled or Tiled to fit all movie sizes, or None at all, in which case if will be black.
The Filters... menu item opens a window which looks like a directory display. From here filter modules may be dragged to individual Clip control - Filter windows. The order in which the filters are added to a clip determines the operational order.
Filter modules may be easily plugged into CineWorks at a later stage, therefore custom modules may be written by third parties, or possibly Oregon on request.
A video filter can have wide ranging effects, from noise removal, to making a movie appear old by giving it a brown tarnished greyscale effect.
CineWorks is able to support plug in global effects modules, these can simply be toggled on or off on the Effects - Modules submenu.
The Timecodes module, when switched on, overlays standard timecode graphics over all clips created by CineWorks.
The CineWorks choices window is opened by choosing Choices... from the iconbar menu.
The choices are split into four categories, clicking one of the choice buttons will open the relevant choice window.
Also on this window are three buttons:
By closing the window with the close icon, any changes made will be used for this session only.
The memory usage for cached display data, is not shown as a specific value since it may vary depending upon various factors, including the number of tracks used. CineWorks has four preset memory allocations, and we recommend using the High setting to avoid disc activity, unless memory shortage is a problem.
The Cache audio and Cache video options, determine whether the library will make cached thumbnails of the clips. These thumbnails are used on the timeline for a more useful display, and to generate real-time previews. If video clips are not cached, the real-time preview feature will not be available.
We recommend that the caching feature is only disabled, if disc space shortage is a problem.
The Display choices, control the physical appearance of the timeline:
The Display colours window allows a colour to be selected for different aspects of the timeline.
All sixteen standard desktop colours are available, either by scrolling through with the adjuster arrows, or clicking menu over the colour, opens a colour menu.
Clicking the OK action button confirms the new settings.
Almost every aspect of CineWorks is modular so that if may be easily expanded, and customised. The default extensions are shown in the window below, and their purpose has been explained at the appropriate places in the manual. However, these extensions may be removed or installed from this window.
To install or remove an extension module, first highlight the module by clicking it, then click either the Install or Remove buttons.
Setup options may be available for some modules.
Extension modules may be written that add an infinite amount of new features to CineWorks.
CineWorks is able to create ARMovies in a number of different formats. We shall not describe them all here, but summarise the formats and give some idea as to their strengths and weaknesses.
Separates the image definition and colour components, resulting in better compression when using the Moving Blocks compressor, and superior image quality.
The movie is split into red, green and blue components. RGB movies may be compressed by the MovingLines compressor, but not the superior MovingBlocks compressor.
These movies are identical in format to their larger counterparts, but are scaled by 50% In both x and y directions. If the movie is scaled to 200% using the File-Control menu item, saving in this format will result in an extremely high quality movie.
Represents the bits per pixel of the finished movie. Ultimately the bpp format chosen will represent a trade-off between image quality and file size.
It is suggested that YUV format movies are always used, unless creating a movie consisting of solely RGB clips.
The bpp choice is also related to the clips which are being used. If using an Irlam card to grab high quality 15bpp YUV, you will normally want to retain this quality. However, if you are using mainly 10bpp clips, saving as 15bpp will not achieve an improvement in the output quality, just an increased file size, and memory requirement.
The majority of the clips supplied on the 'CineClips' CD are of YUV format, compressed using the MovingBlocks compressor quality 2. All images were captured using the Irlam 24i16 card.
We recommend that the MovingBlocks compressor is used with YUV movies. If you do not have a copy of the compressors, these are available as part of the Acorn Replay Starter Kit, which may be obtained from most Acorn software stockists.
CineWorks allows audio data to be saved in a number of different formats:
The number of bits per sample defines how accurately the analogue amplitude level may be digitally represented.
Until recently the most common method of storing audio data for Acorn computers was using a single byte, or 8 bits. This allows 256 different digital levels to be defined.
However with the advent of the Risc PC, the demand for 16 bit audio quality has been answered. This allows 65536 different digital levels to be defined but of course is at the expense of an extra memory requirement.
Linear Signed - Positive amplitudes are represented as positive numbers, negative amplitudes are represented as negative numbers. Samples may contain any number of bits per sample.
Linear Unsigned - Minimum amplitude is represented by 0, and all other amplitudes are represented by positive numbers. Samples may contain any number of bits per sample.
Logarithmic - This is the Acorn native format, which stores data on a logarithmic scale, which is closer to the natural response curve of the human ear. This arguably gives better audio quality, but may only be used with 8 bit sample data.
The audio output format selected, is a choice which should be made considering the format of the audio clips which have been used in the movie.
If 8 bit linear audio clips have been used, then saving as 16 bit will not improve the quality, but simply increase the file size. However, if 8 bit logarithmic clips have been used, or the clips have been processed or mixed, then saving as 16 bit will result in superior audio quality.
Unnecessary conversion from logarithmic to linear, and vice versa, will introduce some interference.
CineWorks is able to import, and handle a large selection of video and audio formats, both from Acorn and other platforms. The table below summarises the formats currently supported, how they are recognised by CineWorks, and how they should be loaded.
|Video format name||Recognised by||Drag to|
|Acorn Replay Movie||ARMovie||(FB2)||Timeline / Library|
|AVI for windows||AVI||(FB2)||Library|
|Acorn Sprite file||Sprite||(FF9)||Timeline / Library|
|Acorn Draw file||Draw||(AFF)||Timeline / Library|
|ChangeFSI file||ChangeFSI||Timeline / Library|
|Audio format name||Recognised by||Drag to|
|AudioWorks||AudioWrk||(BD6)||Timeline / Library|
|Armadeus||Armadeus||(D3C)||Timeline / Library|
|Microsoft Wave (.WAV)||File content||(FB1)||Timeline / Library|
|Creative Voice (.VOC)||File name||*/VOC||Timeline / Library|
|Sun/NeXT audio (.snd)||File name||*/SND||Timeline / Library|
|(.SOU)||File name||*/SOU||Timeline / Library|
Potted history of CineWorks:
Bundled software MPEG-Works, is a MPEG decoder/encoder, ported by Henrik B. Pedersen and Søren Lange.
This conversion was generated to assist the drobe discussion about video editing under RISC OS.