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bstankie
04-16-2003, 06:50 PM
I would like to make a movie of an experiment for a conference presentation (mpeg or preferably a QT movie). I have done this using the SVideo out on the computer to my digital camera, but the quality is not very good. Is there a way to capture frames and re-thread the frames into a movie? Or is there an easy way of generating a QT or mpeg movie within Vizard?

Thanks,
Brian

farshizzo
04-17-2003, 12:13 PM
Hi Brian,

The following command creates an image file of the current screen:

viz.screencapture(filename)

It would be up to you to create a movie with these images. Also, if you plan on making a long movie, then this might not be the best way to go about this. There are some programs out there that will automatically create a movie for you. I just found this one and tested it out and it looks pretty good.

http://www.fraps.com/

Good luck!

-- farshid

tobin
04-18-2003, 12:15 PM
I just tried FRAPs (www.fraps.com) and after running a few tests, I must say it seems like an excellent tool for building movies of worlds. I did find that it didn't record well at 640x480 and that only after reducing Vizard's window size to 320x240 did it capture at a reliable and acceptable frame rate. Keep in mind 320x240 is about VHS/NTSC quality, so it's not much different than what you can achieve with low-cost video capture kits for a PC.

I recommend the following:

1) Use viz.go(viz.NICE) to automatically open a render window at 320x240 (4:3 aspect ratio).

2) Configure FRAPS to record at 25 Hz (or 30, but most AVI codecs looks fine at 25 so why not give the CPU a little extra breathing room).

3) Use F9 to toggle recoding on and off. Be sure to have lots of hard disk space because you'll use 115 Megs per minute of video. It's extremely easy to later recompress the AVI files using a fantastic free tool called VirtualDub (www.virtualdub.org).

4) Be sure to quit FRAPS when verifying your AVIs look right otherwise you might think the frame rate counter that shows up in Windows Media Player is part of your recoding (FRAPS displays a frame rate counter even in Window's Media Playe so it can be confusing, or at least it confused me at first).


Note about codecs & VirtualDub:
When recompressing your video, you should decide what codec you're going to use (codec is the compression algorithm used to shrink video files). The trick is finding one that's both good quality and compatible with computers you'll later use to play it on. My old favorite is Intel Indeo 5.1 but it unfortunately no longer comes free on XP (after service pack 1, that is), so it means you can't trust that folks with new machines can play such videos. As such, I mostly use MPEG1 now because every PC and Mac supports it. There's a good free AVI to MPEG1 or 2 converter called TMPGEnc (www.tmpgenc.net). For some reason, it doesn't seem to work with the output directly from FRAPS so one workaround is to re-save the AVI using VirtualDub (save as AVI without turning on any compression so that it's goes fast and doesn't lose any quality). Alternatively, I looked and found you can purchase a MPEG1 codec from Pegasus, Inc. for $30 (www.pegasusimaging.com/picvideomjpeg.htm). Seems like there must be a freeware MPEG1 codec out there but I didn't find it yet.

Instead of going MPEG, a very good alternative within the AVI world is the DIVX codec. You can go to www.divx.com and get a freeware version of their codec that is superb. With it, you can use VirtualDub in one step to shrink your AVIs. The downside here is you need the codec to both compress and to play back later, which means if you intend for users/PCs to view this AVI they too will need to download the free version of DIVX.

bstankie
05-20-2004, 03:18 PM
Hi,
I would like to capture video of a subject running in a study. I used FRAPS in version 1.X and it worked great. However, it doesn't seem to work in 2.x. Is there something that has changed that prevents video capture with FRAPS. If so, do you have any recommendations on how to do video capturing using Vizard?

Thanks,
Brian

farshizzo
05-20-2004, 03:56 PM
Hi Brian,

When you say it doesn't work in version 2.x do you mean version 2.x of Vizard or 2.x of Fraps? The last free version of Fraps is 1.9d and I just tried it with Vizard 2.15 and it worked fine. If you're using version 2.x of Fraps make sure you meet the requirements. I noticed that it requires DirectX 9.0b and that it must be installed using an Administrator account.

bstankie
05-20-2004, 04:00 PM
Hi,
I am sorry, I am referring to version 2.x of Vizard (version 1.9D of FRAPS). When I generate the movie I get a black image. I am running it under one of our older machines (not XP machine). Let me try it with another machine and see what happens. Will report back.

Brian

mspusch
05-20-2004, 04:32 PM
We've found fraps to be very reliable but there's a commercial tool called Snagit that you might try instead. You can buy it at www.snagit.com for $40. You can try it unrestricted for 30 days. Major advantages are it does compression so you don't need something like VirtualDub to compress after the fact. It also records sounds.

Have fun.

Tobin

bstankie
05-21-2004, 01:51 PM
Hi Matthias-

I used this and it works great. Thanks for the recommendation.

Brian

JRichizzle
06-09-2004, 01:36 PM
I am also interested in recording video of real-time motion simulations in Vizard. I used Fraps 1.9d to record 5-10 seconds of video in a "viz.go(viz.NICE)"-sized window. The .avi file is saved just fine, and similar to above postings, I am not able to run it in Windows Media Player. However, when I try to open it in VirtualDub 1.4.13 to re-save as an .avi file, I also get an error message (see attached screenshot).

So, I cannot re-save the uncompressed video file as a .avi file using VirtualDub before converting to MPEG1 or 2.

Any idea why this is happening?

tobin
06-10-2004, 04:32 PM
Fraps support web page used to talk about this problem and suggested how to resolve this. That page doesn't appear to be there anymore, perhaps because they have a version you pay for now and it's resolved in it. Don't know.

Our recommendation right now is to start using SnagIt. It's worth the small price. It's also fully functional for 30 days free.