QuickTime Standard Operating Procedure

When making QuickTimes for publication, export from MetaMorph, then open in QuickTime Pro and do the following:

  1. Open the properties and select the 'Video Track'
  2. Go to 'Visual Settings' and tick the 'High Quality' box.
  3. Go to 'Other Settings' and tick the 'Cache (hint)' box.
  4. If you want, select the container item (the top one in the list, name is name of file) and add metadata in the annotations tab (i do artist and title). Be consistent about which tags you use (author vs artist etc) and what you annotate - container or video track.
  5. Do File > Export, hit 'Options', hit the 'Settings' button under Video, select H.264, use the current frame rate, do whatever you like for key frames (i'd say automatic, but i think that inserts key frames at scene changes, of which there aren't any), automatic data rate, best quality encoding, and compressor quality, well, whatever is appropriate (best for smallish movies, high for bigger ones if the file is too big).

Actually, looks a bit like the hints and annotations are lost when you export - have to open the exported movie and do them then.

You can also get QT to open an image series; this means you don't have to make a MOV in MM, but you do have to save the stack as separate frames.

Top fact: MetaMorph uses the Animation (aka RLE) codec. This is one of the three codecs that were part of QuickTime 1, and is intended for cartoons - for the same things GIF and PNG are good for. It's basically run-length encoding. It's simple and lossless (at best/100%/whatever quality, anyway), which is why MM use it.