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Screen sizing

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Jeremy WilsonScreen sizing
by on Jan 14, 2011 at 9:48:07 pm

Hi all,
I'm new to the forum, and pretty new to motion graphics in general, but I'm getting a good handle on it by visiting sites like this one. I have a newbie question about screen sizes. I have a client who gave me these screen specs for a presentation they want designed. "It will be displayed on a LCD TV/Flat Screen 40 inches." Unfortunately that's all the info she could get me.

Can anyone help me with what size I should be designing at in AfterEffects? I apologize if this is a painfully basic question, but I can't seem to find a good answer online.

Thanks SO MUCH for any help anyone can lend!


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Dave LaRondeRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 14, 2011 at 10:42:25 pm

[Jeremy Wilson] "I have a client who gave me these screen specs for a presentation they want designed. "It will be displayed on a LCD TV/Flat Screen 40 inches." Unfortunately that's all the info she could get me."

That's insufficient information, and you CAN NOT start the project until you get proper delivery specs.

The crucial thing to know: how is this going to be played back? DVD? Blu-Ray? If it's on DVD, is it 4x3 or 16x9? Until you know, you're stuck.

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


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Jeremy WilsonRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 14, 2011 at 10:47:13 pm

Thanks for the quick reply Dave! One thing that I suggested is that we use a DVD player to just loop the presentation over and over (it's going to be on a screen at their tradeshow booth.) Does that help matters?


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Dave LaRondeRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 14, 2011 at 10:53:37 pm

[Jeremy Wilson] "One thing that I suggested is that we use a DVD player... Does that help matters?"

A bit. You know know you'll be working at a resolution of 720x480, since NTSC DVD's are all 720x480 resolution. You still have to figure out if your work will be 4x3 or 16x9; it could be either.

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


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Jeremy WilsonRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 14, 2011 at 11:02:39 pm

Well, at least that's a start anyway. This is a bit of a new foray for my company, so I've been given the task of taking on this presentation. They wanted to do it in Flash, but I find After Effects to be so much more user friendly.

Thanks so much for your help Dave! I've learned a ton by reading your answers to a lot of the posts here.


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Cory PetkovsekRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 16, 2011 at 12:25:43 pm

A 40" screen means nothing. A DVD player plugged in to it outputs DVD resolution (720x480). That same resolution is output to a 7", 32" or 60" plasma tv, it just scales up. A bluray player plugged into the same TVs will output 1280x720 or 1920x1080. These are only two of many possible output devices.

As Dave said, you need more information to be able to deliver what is expected.

A DVD player attached to the TV is a reasonable, and perhaps the most familiar method, though it is not trivial. Note that 40" TVs are 16:9. Also DVDs don't use square pixels. This means you'll have some odd composition settings in order to make it look proper while working on it and while delivering. Plus DVD mastering can be a lot of work.

This tutorial might help. It shows a workflow where you can work on square pixels, but output widescreen pixels (1.21 pixel aspect ratio), plus it shows how to author a dvd in encore.
http://www.videocopilot.net/tutorials/dvd_authoring/

Finally, make sure your DVD player can repeat.
Cory

--
Cory Petkovsek
Corporate Video


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Michael SzalapskiRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 18, 2011 at 3:04:20 pm

I would like to mention that if your screen is an HD screen (which, by the size of it, it probably is), a DVD shown on it will look blurry since it's a 720x480 image being blown up to a 1920x1080 screen.

If that's the case, ideally you'll have a Blu-ray player with a Blu-ray disc as your source. If not, perhaps you could hook a computer up to it with your video looping on it. Both Windows Media Player and Quicktime Player have an easy-to-use loop option. Although, if you go the computer route (or really any route), you should have a secondary backup plan like a DVD player, in case the computer crashes or something else goes south.

As mentioned by the previous posters, you really can't start work until you know what the delivery specs are.

- The Great Szalam
(The 'Great' stands for 'Not So Great, in fact, Extremely Humble')

No trees were harmed in the creation of this message, but several thousand electrons were mildly inconvenienced.


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Jeremy WilsonRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 18, 2011 at 6:00:18 pm

Thanks everyone for all of the help! I got an answer back from the event people that stated this: "A 16:9 is the best aspect ratio for our 42” LCD." So, the screen is 42" rather than 40" which might not mean too much, but at least they got that spec right. We'll be using a DVD player, not a blu-ray.

So now (if that info helps at all) any suggestions as to what my AfterEffects project settings should be?


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Dave LaRondeRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 18, 2011 at 6:07:35 pm

[Jeremy Wilson] "We'll be using a DVD player, not a blu-ray... any suggestions as to what my AfterEffects project settings should be?"
  • Use the NTSC DV Widescreen comp preset
  • Get to know the Pixel Aspect Ratio compensation toggle switch at the bottom of the comp window
  • Render in a high-quality codec in AE
  • Use a dedicated compression application to convert the video to MPEG2 for DVD authoring
.

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


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Jeremy WilsonRe: Screen sizing
by on Jan 18, 2011 at 8:55:34 pm

Thanks Dave! I'll probably use Sorenson Squeeze for the conversion.
You guys have been a huge help. Thanks so much!!!


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