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Now, you've made a really nice KoolMoves movie, but it doesn't play at the right speed, so what do you do now? There are three basic means by which you may adjust movie speed. They are: the FPS setting (frames per second) for your movie, number of tweens, and number of keyframes. The tutorial below refers back to a simple movie created in a previous tutorial.
The tutorial above may involve the use of some actionscript, html, and the like, but are not necessarily intended to teach them. These tutorials are intended to familiarize new users to the Kool Moves interface and contain simplified examples of how to perform specific tasks in Kool Moves as they would relate to the use of materials from this site. Suggested examples contained within these tutorials may not necessarily be the "best" way to accomplish a task, but they do accomplish the job at hand. These tutorials are not an attempt to copy already existing tutorials. In some instances, more detailed tutorials on actionscript and the use of the Kool Moves tool are available at the Support page on the Kool Moves web site.
Using FPS, Tweens, and Keyframes to adjust movie speed
Part 1 - Setting the Movie Speed (FPS)
If your movie plays too fast or too slow, the first thing you might want to try is re-setting the frame rate by changing the FPS (frames per second). The FPS setting sets the number of frames displayed for each second the movie plays. When setting the movie speed via FPS, it is important to remember that ALL movie frames are counted, not just the ones you draw. For the purposes of movie speed, both keyframes and tweens are considered movie frames (shown below). In other words, keyframes (the frames YOU draw) are movie frames, and tweens (the in-between frames made by Kool Moves) are also movie frames, and ALL are counted when setting the FPS. (This will become more apparent as you learn how tweens affect movie speed.later in this tutorial). For right now, to set the FPS for your movie, follow the instructions below:
The default speed for Kool Moves is 12 fps. This is the speed at which your Kool Moves movie will play without changing the speed setting.
The minimum that you can set is 6 fps and the maximum is 32 fps. A value of 12 to 24 fps is considered a reasonable speed for a Flash movie. (The Flash player can become unstable when playing at a rate faster than 36 fps.)
Part 2 - Adjust Movie Speed using Default Tweens
If you've tried adjusting the FPS and your movie still moves too fast or too slow, you can make further speed adjustments by re-setting the Default Tweens for the entire movie. The Default Tweens setting sets the number of tweens that will be produced automatically by Kool Moves between each movie keyframe that you draw. The number of default tweens can affect how smoothly your animation plays and can also affect the movie speed. To see how the number of default tweens can affect movie speed, refer to the illustrated examples below:
The final part of this tutorial discusses the use of keyframes to adjust movie speed. The reason this lesson is last, is so that you can remember it as you design your next movie. As previously discussed, keyframes represent an "event" that you want to occur within your movie. Since Kool Moves does not offer the option to designate a keyframe as a tween and vice versa, you will have to take movie speed into account from the start as you design your movie. This means, for example, if you know that you want a certain part of your movie to slow down dramatically, you may want to design it into the movie inherently, by drawing it right into your keyframes to begin with. Here is what I mean: Using a previous example movie, the following illustrations show how to slow down the movie action using keyframes.
More frames per second speeds up the movie, fewer frames per second slows the movie.
On the menu bar at the top of the Kool Moves interface, select Movie > Movie Speed. The Movie Speed dialog box will open. You will see a default speed of 12 fps in that box. Change the number to any number between 6 and 32. Then click OK to save the setting.
In the previous tutorial we created a short movie, two keyframes with a pre-determined FPS and number of default tweens that showed a ball going from the left to the right in one second (very fast), illustrated below:
When setting the FPS for your movie, keep the following in mind:
Some basic reminders from the Kool Moves Help File:
Video and television typically run at 30 fps (frames per second) and film traditionally runs at 24 fps. Most cartoons and anime' are done at 12 or 15 fps
Faster frame rates produce smoother animation but require more tween frames to achieve the same length of movie.
The actual speed of the movie may prove to be less than your desired speed because of peformance limitations. Movies with a lot of transparency for example will tend to play slower
When setting the FPS, all movie frames are counted, tweens as well as keyframes.
Re-setting the FPS only changes the frame rate for the current movie project. New movies in Kool Moves will always open to the default of 12 fps.
Think of movie speed as the amount of time (in seconds) that it takes to go from one keyframe "event" to the next, or in other words, counting keyframes per second.
When you create a movie with more than one keyframe, default tweens are automatically added between the keyframes.
When you set the movie FPS you define a time element, thus establishing the number of movie frames (keyframes AND tweens) that will play for each second of movie play.
Movie Speed equals the time it takes to go from keyframe to keyframe.
FPS equals the number of Movie Frames played per second.
So, what does all this have to do with tweens and how they affect movie speed? Here is how it all comes together:The diagram below contains 15 frames representing a movie "strip" containing three keyframes, the default tweens set to 6 with a frame rate of 8 fps. A movie that will play in approximately two seconds.
Say you want to speed up the movie. To do this, you have to count the keyframes faster. Remember from part 1 above, when determining the FPS for your movie, ALL frames are counted (keyframes PLUS tweens). So, if you leave the FPS at the same setting (8 fps) and change the number of default tweens, you change the overall number of movie frames that are being counted between keyframes, therefore you are also changing the time it takes in which to count those keyframes. In the illustration below, the default tweens have been decreased from 6 to 4. Keeping in mind that movie speed is the amount of time it takes to go from one keyframe to the next, we can see that a decrease in the number tweens also decreases the time it takes to go from keyframe 1 to keyframe 2 to keyframe 3. The keyframes are being counted faster, thus the movie speed is being increased,
A movie containing 15 frames, with default tweens set to 6 will count three keyframes in approximately two seconds.
Compare this diagram to the previous one. Notice that decreasing the default tweens from 6 to 4, causes the three keyframes to be counted faster (less than 2 seconds), speeding up the movie. The opposite is also true. Increasing the tweens will cause the keyframes to be counted slower (more than two seconds) thereby slowing down the movie.
Part 3 - Setting the Tweens for Individual Frames
To set the Default Tweens for your Kool Moves Movie, from the menu at the top of the interface, click Frames > Default Tweens, the Default Tweens dialog box will open showing the Kool Moves default setting of 6. You change this number to your desired setting (0 - 90), then click OK to exit.
Keep the following in mind when setting your default tweens:
Increasing default tweens instead of adding more keyframes keeps your file size smaller.
Decreasing default tweens will speed up your movie. Increasing tweens will slow it down.
Increasing default tweens creates a smoother.transition between keyframes (morphing).
In the lesson above you learned how to change the speed of an entire movie by changing the Default Tweens. But what if you only want to change the speed for part of the movie? Unlike Default tweens, adding or subtracting tweens for individual frames lets you control the movie speed at a specific time. Dramatic effects can be accomplished by changing the number of tweens for an individual frame or group of frames. In regard to speed, all of the same principles discussed above apply to this technique.
To change the number of tweens for an individual frame go to the frame you want to change, click on the Tweens dialog at the bottom of the interface (shown below) and choose the number of tweens you want (0 - 90) from the dropdown menu. This will change the tweens for that frame only.
Using too few default keyframes can make an animation appear jerky or skip around.
Setting the default tweens to zero (0) eliminates all morphing between keyframes - an effective technique for scene changes or slide shows.
Part 4 - Adjust Movie Speed with Keyframes
To change the number of tweens for a group of frames go to the first frame in the group and repeat the process above for each frame.
Note: Kool Moves features a Single Step play mode which allows you to view the changes between tweens and keyframes. This feature can be useful when editing tweens or creating animated .gifs. To access this feature click Play > Single Step.
Now we want to slow down the ball dramatically by adding a keyframe between the first two. Note below, that by using three keyframes instead of two and positioning the ball in the middle without changing the FPS or default tweens slows down the movie by increasing the time it takes for the ball to go from left to right.
Using more keyframes, to make the transition more gradual will slow down the movie even more. The opposite is also true. Using fewer keyframes can speed up the same action.
Part 5 - Points to Remember
To Speed Up a Movie: Increase the FPS, decrease the tweens and/or decrease the Keyframes
To Slow Down a Movie: Decrease the FPS, increase the tweens and/or increase the Keyframes
The first, and probably most important thing to keep in mind in regard to movie speed is that the Speed at which your Flash movie will play is NOT guaranteed. There are several factors that affect movie speed, the least of which include your movie speed settings (fps), tweening, the complexity of your movie, the computer speed and available resources of each individual viewer's computer (varies from viewer to viewer), and internet connection speeds. The best way to improve the odds that your movie speed will remain consistent for most viewers is to keep it simple. Overuse of transparencies, shapes with too many points, and import of images (.jpg's, bitmaps, etc.), tend to slow down movie speed. For a simple animated movie, the effects of the above may not seem so important but become more apparent when it comes to more advanced techniques like synchronizing audio (speech, sound effects, or music) to scenes or animated characters, inserting movie clips or using multiple time lines. With that said, this tutorial discusses only the basics in determining overall movie speed for simpler movies. More advanced techniques will be discussed elsewhere.