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Motion menu - black screen?

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Thomas Tailford
Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 27, 2009 at 5:16:40 pm

I have a motion menu in AE, although the audio works... the video doesn't.

I've tried using different .avi files to see if it was the .avi file - but they are not showing either... just a black screen.

I have made the buttons in adobe photoshop and these are showing fine.

When trying to preview them it doesnt work, when rendering the full DVD I get the same blank screen - where it should be motion.

Any ideas?!


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Jon Geddes
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 27, 2009 at 8:32:25 pm

Have you tried testing the avi file to confirm the avi doesn't have any problems with it? You also might want to try a quicktime export (using the animation codec). You could also create an after effects composition that contains the audio and video of your motion background, then import it in using dynamic link.

You are setting it as the motion video and audio asset of the menu, correct?

Jon Geddes
Providing the Best Motion Menu Templates Available for Video Production
http://www.precomposed.com


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Thomas Tailford
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 28, 2009 at 1:04:44 pm

The video plays fine within Encore itself (if i press play on the top left corner)

The audio from the video also plays fine when I preview the menu or when I do a full DVD encode.

I've also tried other videos - that have all encoded fine and work on the DVD - but all returning the blank screen.

I've tried both Alt-dragging the video into the menu and pickwhipping with no success!

Nightmare!!


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Heath Firestone
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 28, 2009 at 3:42:14 pm

This may be obvious, but have you selected the "Render current motion menu or slideshow" button in the preview window? It is fairly easy to miss, placed in the lower left corner just above the size selection drop down. It doesn't even really look like a button, but mouse-over displays it's function.

If you don't select this, it only displays the first frame, which may be black.

I can't tell from your description what is going on, but it occurred to me that your motion menu byuttons might show up black if you hadn't rendered them in the preview window.

I hope this is helpful.

Heath


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Jon Geddes
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 28, 2009 at 4:02:20 pm

This is actually a common misconception. Encore will render the motion menus during the build process whether you selected "Render > Motion Menus" or not.

In most cases, it will re-render them during the build process even if you have already rendered them by selecting the "Render > Motion Menus", making it completely pointless unless you just want to preview it.

In fact, I find the preview not very accurate either (particularly with Blu-ray), so I usually skip the preview, don't even bother clicking "render > motion menus", go straight to building an image, mount it to a drive, then play it back using a software dvd player.

Jon Geddes
Providing the Best Motion Menu Templates Available for Video Production
http://www.precomposed.com


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Heath Firestone
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 28, 2009 at 4:44:02 pm

Jon,

Good points. I realize that it only effects preview, and isn't necessary for authoring. I was a little confused by the description of the problem since he says that they play fine on the DVD. After rereading the post, I think he means that the videos play fine, but the motion menu's show up black. I thought maybe he was just talking about in the preview, which is why I was checking to make sure he was rendering the previews if he was wanting to view them in the preview mode.

My guess is that your question about the possibility that he didn't set it as the motion video and audio asset of the menu, is probably what is causing the problem.

Heath


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Thomas Tailford
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 28, 2009 at 11:19:13 pm

Hi,

Correct when doing a preview render I can only see the menu buttons (and not the video motion) - this is the same for the DVD... just buttons.

Set the following in Properties -> Motion
Video: motionmenu.avi
Audio: motionmenu.avi
Duration: 00:00:30:22
Animate buttons: unchecked
Loop point: 00:00:00:00
Loop #: Forever

I've never come across this before and done a few motion menus succesfully... so kinda wierd!


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Jon Geddes
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 28, 2009 at 11:25:28 pm

What codec did you use for the AVI file?

Remember, avi is not a codec, its just a container.

Jon Geddes
Providing the Best Motion Menu Templates Available for Video Production
http://www.precomposed.com


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Thomas Tailford
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 28, 2009 at 11:28:33 pm

I used the DV Pal codec - 16:9, interlaced.

Should I try a different one?


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Jon Geddes
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Jun 28, 2009 at 11:38:12 pm

As I mentioned in my first response to your post, you should try the Quicktime Export using the Animation codec (set to 100% quality) and see if it has the same result. If it does, you know it has nothing to do with the source file, but with how Encore is encoding to mpeg2.

If the quicktime file does not resolve the issue, I would try encoding to mpeg2 outside of Encore using the Adobe Media Encoder so that Encore doesn't have to do any transcoding.

If that fixes the problem, then I would double check your transcode settings in Encore... in fact you might want to do that now before doing anything else.

Jon Geddes
Providing the Best Motion Menu Templates Available for Video Production
http://www.precomposed.com


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Przystawko Bart
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Apr 19, 2010 at 4:04:19 pm

I Just figured it out!!

Thomas, I've had the same problem for two whole days now and I've been trying to research a solution to no avail. I've finally figured it out, and its actually really simple. Its not the video codec. Its actually the PSD you're using for your buttons. Mine was all black too, even when I rendered the motion menu. The problem is that you have too many layers in your PSD file. Aside from the buttons (which are contained in their own groups), you should only have one other layer: the placeholder.

I didn't play around with it enough to know the EXACT requirements, so I'll just tell you what I did to my PSD to get it to work:

In photoshop, delete every layer except the groups containing the buttons. Then, make a layer and place it last at the bottom, below all of your buttons. Name it whatever. Then just colour it in any colour so that when you import it to ENCORE you'll be able to see that layer (for debugging purposes). One thing you should make sure of is that your placeholder layer isn't registered in photoshop as the "background" layer. What I mean by that is, each time you create a new photoshop document, the file starts out with one layer called background. This layer is locked (it has the little lock symbol beside it in the layers tab) and it cannot be unlocked. You should delete that layer and make a custom background layer that isn't locked. I think this could be the problem, as Encore cannot turn it invisible if it is locked, though I can't be sure.

Good luck!


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David Poplawski
Re: Motion menu - black screen?
on Apr 27, 2010 at 2:49:55 am

Thanks for the tip, Bart!
That was exactly my issue with a black animated menu screen. I removed the original Background layer, as well as others that were unneeded, in my psd and Voila, it worked!


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