Contest questions: render settings, file size limit, etc.

Question #1: How do you keep the final file size down to 5MB? What are the settings you should use for the video and audio? One thing that I found helps a lot is doing 12 fps rather than 24. This helps a lot. But is there anything else I can do? I’ve just been experimenting with render after render to see what factors in the settings as well as the animation that cause it to go over the limit.

Question #2: The rules say that the animation must be “less than 25 seconds.” Well, the audio clips are exactly 25 seconds so if it is to be less do I have to clip it?

Question #3: Can you add additional sound effects?

Okay, I did a few tests. As far as I can see these are the best settings to stay within the 5MB limit:

Quality: Least
Encoding mode: multi-pass

Uncompressed, 8 kHz, 16 bit, Mono

The render is like a bad JPEG but using any higher quality goes over 5MB. These tests were done with only a vector character that is simply animated by moving across the screen and a single vector background.

Too bad the size limit is so small! You can hardly do anything at this size and the render is pretty junky. Oh well, I guess it will be the same for everyone. Hope the judges can get some idea from the clips submitted.

Hey Zeb,

Yes you can use additional sound effects.

Quote from MOS site :

AgentSmith, Thursday, 02 September 2010 11:37
Yes, you are allowed to add your own foley effects, whooshes, etc. We humbly ask that no musical tracks be added.

and for your other question on MOS, another quote:

- Agent Smith

AgentSmith, Friday, 03 September 2010 09:11
For the questions regarding software, I would refer you to the official rules on Toon Boom’s site.

I’ll quote a portion here from the eligibility section (which is no substitute for you reading the rules): “Movies ONLY created using Toon Boom Animate PLE software or the Animate Pro PLE are eligible for submission.”

As for render, havent played around with it yet.

are you using the H.264 codec?

You should be able to get a really small file size…

Thanks for the replies! Yes, I’m using H.264. I mean, just rendering the soundtrack only comes to 2.5 MB with no video whatsoever. Does not leave much wiggle room if you know what I mean.

I found that sometimes when I have a QuickTime Movie that is too big, I open it with QuickTime Pro and reexport it from there as an H-264.

It often makes it smaller. QuickTime Pro seems to compress better than a lot of other software.


I’ve asked that same question.

I also get better results within QT itself… but is this allowed in the contest?

Well, if the Global Moderator says it’s okay, I’ll take her word for it and see if it helps!

Ouf! No pressure here :stuck_out_tongue:

So to clarify: For the Out of This World Contest I am allowed export a movie from Animate, import the video into a separate video editor then export it again, all while still being in the rules?

Edit: Is there some trick to exporting videos that I’m missing? I have the audio and video compression set to the lowest it will go, to try to hit the 5MB mark, but it is too large by 2 or 3 MB. I tried re-exporting it in Blender but the file size was larger than before.

I just submitted my entry to the contest. My Animate render came to 39.2 MB. I opened it in QuickTime Pro and re-exported using the H.264 codec at 65% quality. The final file size was 4.6 MB. The quality was not as good as I had wanted but this was the best I could do.

Here are some interesting things that I found out when I submitted my entry.

1. When you upload the MOV file it says it cannot be larger than 8 MB. I wonder why since the rules state it cannot exceed 5 MB?

2. The PNG image is supposed to be 854x480 which I had ready to upload. However, the message you get is that it should also be 300 dpi. Mine was 96 dpi so I had to redo it. Good to know.

I have resolved my issue. I export my movie as images and import them into Blender 2.5 along with the voice clip. From there I can export the movie with no problem.

Thanks for info Zeb… I’ve just re-read the rules… now it says the Limit is 8 MB

•QuickTime (MOV) movie format with widescreen 16:9 aspect ratio
•Duration of less than 25 seconds
•File size not exceeding 8MB
•Resolution of 854x480 pixels
•Compressed with the H264 codec
•Also required, one still image with a resolution of 854x480 pixels, PNG format

I swear that 8 looked like a 5 before :stuck_out_tongue:

That extra 3MB is going to come in very handy. It will improve the quality of the submissions that’s for sure.

They changed it?! It definitely was 5 MB, so they must have changed it. I’m gonna ask if I can resubmit my entry. Sheeesh! :stuck_out_tongue:

(Edit:) I just got a reply from Toon Boom informing me that I can resubmit my animation! Whoopee!

Looks like it. Do it, atleast that 3 extra MB can improve quality Zeb ;D

Hi Zebtoon,

I verified with the responsible of the contest, YES you can recompress your clip using a third party software.


That is most fortunate. Are we allowed to use a 3rd party image editor (Elements, Gimp, Paint.Net) to create textures for use in the videos?

Such as PSD and TGA to create paint swatch for example?