View Full Version : Quicktime is broken

05-18-2003, 06:48 PM
Lightwave has completely screwed Quicktime in OS X. This is not new news, as these Quicktime bugs have been in Lightwave for years.

I'm still using LW7.5, and haven't yet upgraded to 7.5c (still afraid of introducing new bugs). It's possible that LW7.5c may have resolved the Quicktime bugs, but there's nothing in the documentation to indicate that Quicktime has been fixed.

The Quicktime problems:[list=1]
When Quicktimes at frame rates other than 30fps are loaded into Lightwave's Image Editor and used as surface textures or backdrops to an animation, Lightwave introduces skipped or repeated frames in the output render. This results in stuttery movement.
When a QT movie other than 30fps is used in the image editor, the 'Start Frame' is incorrect. For example, if you set the Start Time as frame 170, the Quicktime may start playing at frame 290.
When a Quicktime is loaded into Lightwave's image editor, Lightwave sometimes thinks the Quicktime has an alpha channel when it doesn't.
Lightwave can't read or write 16 bit-per-channel (48-bit or 64-bit) Quicktimes.
When a framerate for a Lightwave scene is set in the Options panel in Layout, it becomes permanent for that scene. If you later change the framerate, then render your scene to a Quicktime, that Quicktime will be set to the old framerate.
I was hoping that these problems may have been fixed. Until they have been fixed, it is unsafe to use Quicktime with Lightwave.

06-10-2003, 04:56 AM

06-10-2003, 08:07 AM

Actually, for the purposes of 3D, I prefer image sequences to QT anyway. QT would slow down a network render as each node would have to load the whole movie instead of just the images for the frames they are working on, frame rate is not an issue if you set it up right, and when rendering one bad frame doesn't ruin your whole render. However, I agree that it should work, I just wouldn't use it if it did... ;)

06-11-2003, 11:39 AM
I'm with Jon. I've never had LW and QT meet on my system. No point to it.

06-11-2003, 05:57 PM
BTW what happened to the Lightwave mac Resource site I haven't seen any updates, bug reports, from Julian for ages??

06-11-2003, 07:11 PM
Originally posted by Zarathustra
I'm with Jon. I've never had LW and QT meet on my system. No point to it.

Is there any point to posting a comment that dismisses a serious problem, just because you don't use it?

Hell scenario #1

If you want to work with 16bpc images ("64-bit RGBA") you must use the PSD plug-in as the only choice that will work with Adobe After Effects.

PSDs are massive in file size, and must be converted into something else unless you have a terrabyte of disk space. You use After Effects to create a Microcosm Quicktime which is about 1% of the file size with no quality loss.

Later, you want to bring this back into Lightwave to add a Corona effect. Quicktimes of any format will produce stuttering in LW, so you use After Effects to create an image sequence again.

You load the image sequence as a backdrop in Lightwave. In Corona you can't select 16bpc PSD, therefore you must select a 32bpc format like HDR or LogLuv. Then you must reimport this LogLuv image sequence back into Lightwave and render to 16bpc PSD. It can't be done in one step.

Finally you use After Effects to convert back to a QT for storage.

Hell scenario #2

Who uses Quicktime occasionally? Maybe you use it for a low-res test render, just to see if the motion of your animation looks smooth, before you go for a full quality high-res render.

Well, it seems like a logical thing to do, but these renders will be inaccurate, as Lightwave sometimes sets the Quicktime frame rate wrong.

Hell scenario #3

Ever worked with video? If you have a client that gives you some video to incorporate into an animation, chances are that this video was exported by some editing application (like Avid or Final Cut Pro) in the form of a Quicktime.

Sometimes you might have to work with lots of video. All this video must be translated into image sequences before you can use it in Lightwave.

06-12-2003, 02:38 AM
Hello, I see that, finally, there are a lot of things that doesn't work well with LightWave and Quicktime...

Here in Europe, we have another thing that is unusable, which is is a real shame when you need it (let's say all the time...) :
The video format in Europe is PAL, which means 25 fps, but when you load an AIFF in Layout, it plays at 30 fps !! :mad:
And you can't actually load any AIFF, since there's no way to get it playing at 25 fps :(
The only thing to do is to build a 30 fps scene, and then convert it to 25 fps at the end, which is not very easy... :eek:
This bug was already discussed in the old forum, I can't remember when, but it has never been fixed :(

That was just to add to the (long) list... :rolleyes:

@+, Laurent aka Tartiflette :)

06-12-2003, 08:04 AM
It sounds more like your issue is with the ability to work with 16bpc images.
#1 sounds like it's an issue of file formats available from LW and readable by AE, compounded by output limitations of Corona.
#2 - yeah, I suppose.
#3 Yes, I've worked with video and yes you'd convert everything to sequences. Ever have to do a network render? As Jon explained, you don't want QT files in there.

I can also see how QT sounds like the answer for #1 but once again I have to ask you if you ever network render? If you're only using one machine, then I can see your desire to use QT all the time; however, something could still go wrong when you're rendering that QT file on frame 300 of 300 and <poof> you have nothing whereas if you rendered a sequence you'd have 299 frames and would just have to render the last again rather then starting over. THAT's a QT problem, no?

Your "problem" was dismissed because working with QT is a problem with network renders and the very real hell scenario of a crash when rendering a QT and having to start over at frame 1.

06-25-2003, 05:39 PM
Sorry to see that Newtek doesn't apparently care that Quicktime is a major standard which any program rendering out to video ought to play with happily.

I'm frustrated: I cannot render a 300 frame sequence as a Quicktime movie. My poly count is low - just 1750. However, I can render out a different scene with a much lower poly count in QT. Any thoughts?

I'm running LW 7.5 on a G4 Powerbook with 512MB ram, OS X.2.6, and QT 6.3.

06-25-2003, 05:50 PM
So somebody coalesce this Quicktime issue into discernable bugs/steps to add to the bug workshop.

Start with something like the not 30 fps issues. Please!

Chuck made it a sticky topic so people could work on this. Utilize it.

06-25-2003, 06:02 PM
I'm not an expert in this field but from what little experience I've had, if i'm renderring out a quicktime for preview purposes and something goes wrong, I still get all the frames renderred in the quicktime movie, and I can just pickup at the frame where it left off. Then edit the two QT's together.

Am I missing something??

06-25-2003, 07:26 PM
Michael, thanks for remembering this issue. About a year or two ago, Julian Johnson did a test to verify this problem. He made a Quicktime movie running at 25fps with two frame counters in the camera view. He's since taken it down from his website.

I'm just in the middle of a big render. Give me a day or two and I'll repeat Julian's test. Maybe with an animated GIF so I can post it here.

06-25-2003, 08:36 PM
Thanks for the replies so far - great forum!

Riki, I tried your suggestion but it didn't work. I got an error message: "Couldn't open the file because there is an error in the program" - not surprising with the file being a suspicious zero K. My QT program works fine with other simpler objects that I've just rendered, using the same settings.

When I render this particular file (a globe!) to QT, it causes Lightwave to unexpectedly quit, always after completing all the passes of one frame. A still frame of the object renders fine. I try 29.97 fps, 30 fps, compressed or uncompressed Avid Meridien codec - it doesn't matter. Could it be a corrupt file? I've rebuilt it several times. Too many polygons - a mere 1750? Seems like it's not the object - and its image map is a .tga file, which is LW friendly. Thanks again for the input.

LW 7.5
G4 Powerbook 867 with 512MB ram
OS X.2.6
Quicktime 6.3

Arnie Cachelin
06-25-2003, 09:38 PM
The frame rate bug, which also impacted AVIs and any other animation loaders, was fixed in 7.5b.

The API for making animation loaders and savers has been publically available for ages, so a company with a non-standard commercial codec could whip up LW loader/saver in a day, if they wanted. It is hardly an LW bug that this hasn't happened. Interestingly, microcosm codecs managed to keep under Apple's radar so well that they said pixlet was the first 16bpc codec.

06-25-2003, 10:29 PM
Hi Arnie. Your answer is the most informed response I've had to this Quicktime issue. That explains a lot of things.

Yes, I'm still running LW 7.5 (OS X) and didn't upgrade to 7.5c (7.5b was withdrawn for the Mac). It's good to know that the frame rate bug as been fixed. I heard no word from Newtek that the fix was done, but I accept what you say (as you would know) ;)

I was just half way though preparing an animated GIF to explain it. Maybe I'll post that anyway.

According to Microcosm, when an application can accept 16bpc Quicktimes in general, it can automatically accept Microcosm as well. So that would infer that any app that can deal with the Pixlet codec could also accept Microcosm.

I only just heard about Pixlet in the last week. I'm going to do a search and find out more. Apple's 'Animation' codec is not very efficient, nor 16bpc.