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AE timeline frames and rendered frames don't match

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Kevin Gries
AE timeline frames and rendered frames don't match
on Jan 24, 2012 at 7:39:32 pm

Thanks in advance to anyone willing to offer help! Here is my problem in pictures:

The following shows frame (05;20) in my timeline:


The following shows the next frame (05;21) in the timeline:


Upon exporting this animation, the following shows the exported frame (05;19):


...and the exported frame (05;20):


...and the exported frame (05;21):


Hopefully you can see my problem. The idea is to animate the cursor (to which a white mask is parented to block the letters that haven't been "typed" yet) in such a way that it reveals the entire letter "s" in one frame exactly like the way it happens when you type on a computer screen. If you look at the AE timeline, you'll see that the x-coordinate of the cursor's position (the red line) makes its entire move between the two keyframes (keyframe interpolation is linear i.e. no bezier curve).

However, after rendering this composition (I've tried both H264 and lossless AVI) it seems that rendered frame (05;20) is not the same as AE timeline frame (05;20). It seems to be rendering that frame from a position somewhere between AE timeline frames (05;20) and (05;21).

Does anyone know why this is happening and how to fix it?

FYI, this is a 1920x1080 composition with everything set to 29.97fps. I'm assuming it has something to do with that little 0.03fps, but I'm not sure why since the composition and render settings are both set to 29.97fps.

Thanks again for your help!


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Kevin Camp
Re: AE timeline frames and rendered frames don't match
on Jan 24, 2012 at 8:24:33 pm

i have a hard time understanding why there's a discrepancy between the preview and the render... possibly a zoom factor issue (how does the preview compare when set to 100%) -- however, one way that should fix this issue would be to use hold keyframes for the cursor position. this will cause the cursor to jump to the nex position with no tweening in between.

another option could be to use a text preset like 'typewriter' to reveal the text in a similar way.

Kevin Camp
Senior Designer
KCPQ, KMYQ & KRCW


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Dave LaRonde
Re: AE timeline frames and rendered frames don't match
on Jan 24, 2012 at 10:43:31 pm

...and since you're a COW newbie, here's the standard warning: don't use Open GL to accelerate rendering. It causes a lot of problems... such as yours, perhaps. Adobe employees don't use Open GL when they render and you shouldn't either.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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Kevin Gries
Re: AE timeline frames and rendered frames don't match
on Jan 25, 2012 at 1:42:52 am

Thanks for the replies Kevin and Dave. Kevin, your "hold keyframes" suggestion fixed the issue, thank you very much! The typewriter preset, however, would not work in this case because that's not technically text on the screen. Those letters are actually pre-composed objects that are mapped in the shape of letters.

Dave, the fact that you're calling me a COW newbie should actually be a huge compliment to you and the other "regulars" on this forum. I've been referencing these forums for years (ever since I got CS3 when it was new) for solutions to the problems I run into with AE. This just happens to be the first time I haven't found the solution I needed and had to post the issue myself. You guys are amazing and the fact that this is only the first time I've ever had to actually post my question is a testament to how awesome you have been. Your "stock answer #3," for example, was the reason I tested it with an AVI after I noticed the problem with the H.264 version. And I have never used OpenGL in my renders thanks again to this forum.

In short, I'm a fan. Thank you very much for all your help!


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John Gray
Re: AE timeline frames and rendered frames don't match
on Feb 17, 2012 at 9:05:38 pm

I have a question as to why my titles I created in AE have begun to look terrible. When I load my files into the source window or timeline in FCP, they look bad. My typical workflow is to create titles in AE, export them as alpha RGB files, then import them into FCP. I then export the finished file. The process has worked fine up until recently. I’ve already reinstalled the FCP and AE but it has not helped. Help.


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Dave LaRonde
Re: AE timeline frames and rendered frames don't match
on Feb 17, 2012 at 9:46:19 pm

Here's a guess: FCP doesn't deal well with 1080p. It will automatically assume it's upper field first. So if your animation is progressive, highlight the footage in the FCP Browser, look for the incorrectly-named Field Dominance column, and change it to None.

Without further info, that's the best I can do, I'm afraid.

Dave LaRonde
Sr. Promotion Producer
KCRG-TV (ABC) Cedar Rapids, IA


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