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Query regarding your experience with modern PPTX v Keynote for blended screen show

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Darrell Midgette
Query regarding your experience with modern PPTX v Keynote for blended screen show
on Feb 23, 2014 at 9:11:39 pm

Well met -

I'm building out assets for a blended screen show, with physical dimensions of 90' x 14'. My Spyder op has asked that I build the assets for the main screen to conform to 3840 pixels wide (6.43:1 aspect). Not a problem, mostly done. My question is regarding any contributor's experience with modern PowerPoint (2011 Mac/2013 PC) versus Apple Keynote for the presentation software.

Several of the things that I preferred Keynote for have been updated in PowerPoint. Considerations:
  • I loved Keynote's type handling, but... The Mac version of PPT handles type much better than the PC version, and even the latter is better than the old 2003-2008 output. Closer to parity.
  • PPT allows for text effects that can be quickly styled and applied within the app. Keynote does not.
  • Previously, I relied on Keynote when I wanted to layer videos or graphics and videos. The modern versions of PPT now allow for layering elements over video and animating them separately.
  • The animation GUI in the PC version of PPT is head and shoulders above the Mac version, and head and shoulders and waist above Keynote. What I can build quickly in PC PPT is honored in Mac PPT, even if the latter can't author it.
Keynote has taken a step back in usability and features, where PPT has moved ahead. That's a long setup, but I'd like your input on the OUTPUT of Keynote v PPT.
  • If you have used both (Keynote and Mac PPT 2011/PC PPT 2010-13), which do you think looks better on the projected and blended screen?
  • Does one stutter when pushing graphics or videos through Matrox dualhead2gos-to-Spyder more than the other?
  • Keynote used to present type remarkably better than PPT. Is that still the case?

I work in PC PPT much faster with the customizations I've made to the interface and the depth of its shortcut keys. Present via Mac PPT and it's always been nice on normal/smaller screens (nicer looking than the PC PPT). Keynote uses too many clicks and too many disparate palettes for my taste. But I'm building out a really cool timeline and am providing a number of different active looks for the show, and I want to build a kickass wall for the guest speaker. I'll put this together in Keynote if its output is superior enough to warrant the time in setup and edits.

I appreciate your time and perspective.

Thanks -

- DM

DMCreative—Visualization & Implementation
DC Metro Area, USA

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Michael Sisko
Re: Query regarding your experience with modern PPTX v Keynote for blended screen show
on Feb 26, 2014 at 2:22:04 pm

I have done a lot of widescreen shows as both the spyder op and as a watchout op. I always push for keynote, I think it is far more stable then ppt. That being said new keynote is terrible for shows. Is your op planning on over scanning the graphics outside the pixel space and only using the center portion of the slides or is the deck going to be true 3840?

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Darrell Midgette
Re: Query regarding your experience with modern PPTX v Keynote for blended screen show
on Feb 27, 2014 at 6:59:23 pm

Michael, thanks for your reply. Dave, my op, asked me to make graphics 3840 wide and he intends to crop from there, as needed. I've allowed action and title safe zones in the setup. This will be my first event in which I provide the main screen graphics, and so far I think what's in store is going to really please the clients and the speakers. Just trying to settle my mind around KEY v. PPTX for the event.

I'm not happy with the iOSsification of Keynote 6. I do have version 5 available though and have been working in it rather instead. Keynote interface is bad, any version.

I created a PPT storyboard template for clients a while back, and found that the modern Mac version of PPTX allows me to layer graphics and builds over running motion graphics that older versions did not. I still think the graphics look better out of Keynote though. At least so far.

Thanks again for your input sir. Anything else you can suggest or recommend is appreciated.

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