Export loses sync...

Hi there. I’m just exporting an animation project that’s about 3:30. Any time I play the project from the beginning it eventually loses time from the music it’s supposed to be going against. Not by much… a second or two… And the same thing happens when I export it, either as AVI or MOV. When putting it together and beginning playback from various points within the project, it is right on, but not if I play through from the beginning or try to export.

Also, is there a way to copy element cells to a place later in the timeline, without the previous last cell copying itself to catch up with where you paste the pasted cell?

Not sure on the sound problem, did you change the frame rate of the movie after you imported the sound clip, if so, you need to delete the clip and re-import at the new frame rate. If you were making a SWF I would also tell you to go into the sound edit panel and check the box marked Streaming.

Don’t copy and paste cells, it is better to move the frame slider to go to the desired frame and use the Cell panel to select the cell for the current frame. By the way if you are having problems with cells extending their exposure when you want those frames in between to stay empty, you can also use the Cell panel for that too. Select the frame range of cells in the timeline that you want to be “empty” and then on the Cell panel move the cell swapping slider all the way to your far left which sets the current frames to “empty”.

I’m not even sure where the “Cell panel” is… I’ve looked everywhere and there’s no mention of that in the Help section. Do you mean the little tab that says “Cells”? But I don’t see any means of copying or selecting anything from there…

For cutting/copying/pasting cells, the Help section tells you to do exactly what I’ve been doing… Select cells, copy/cut them and paste them to a different point on the Timeline… That seems like a very easy and fluid method for doing what I want to do and is what I’m very much used to doing with audio/MIDI clips in music editing programs. But I just don’t understand why it always extends the last previous cell to where you’ve pasted the new cell. Seems like a weird glitch, unless there’s some setting to disable that which I’m not aware of. If it would stop doing that, then I’d be all set.

But why even have to do that? Those cells in between should just stay empty regardless and not automatically extend out. If I want to extend those cells, I can certainly choose to, but if not, then why have to bother with erasing them or selecting them and going into the Cell panel (?) and selecting “empty” every time? It’s become very tedious to have to do that in a three minute project where I’m copying and reusing a lot of little sections. I guess what I want to know is, why does that happen at all and is there a way to set it so it won’t do that to begin with, without having to select any cells or anything?

Thanks for your help, though. I really appreciate it.

The feature that you are encountering is there because it supports easy adjustments to timing of animation. It allows an animator to drag cells around the timeline and adjust the timing of a sequence. There is no way to turn this feature off as it is part of how TBS is designed to work.

The Cell panel is now a separate panel, in versions earlier than V4.0 it is a tab on the properties panel. The cell panel is a very efficient way to swap cells from inside an element on the timeline. It is an absolute must for working with cut-out characters but it is also great for any cell swapping or placement of cells on the time line. If you have a multi-cell element selected in the timeline then you can use the cell panel. But if the selected element has no cells in it or it has only one cell then this panel is not going to allow you to swap what doesn’t yet exist. The cell panel is extremely useful because it is not limited to cells that are currently in the timeline. It shows and accesses all cells in the element even if they were previously removed from the timeline.

You can certainly cut and paste cells to your hearts content. I am just explaining an alternative workflow that experience has proven to be more effective. Don’t try to pigeon hole TBS as just another cut and paste graphics package it is far more sophisticated and with time you will come to appreciate what at the moment may seem to be strange features. There is more method in that madness than you realize. -JK

It supports easy adjustments to timing of animation? How, when it makes me go back and delete sections of copied cells every time that I didn’t want them there? I can see how that might be useful if you have just one element in a project and are trying to get the timing of that right, but once you’ve got several different elements together in a project, it should be assumed that many of them might come in and out at different times (which is the case in the project I’m working on), and you often wouldn’t want the last cell of the previous section to automatically copy itself up to the first cell of the new section. And even if you only have one element, what if you want it off screen for a while… a totally blank screen… since you copied and pasted a section of it later in the Timeline, it will copy the last frame of the earlier section up to the beginning of the new section and now you’ll have to go back and delete those frames to leave the blank section. I can see the value of having that as an option, but not as the absolute rule…

Another “feature” I’m encountering is that sometimes when I paste a new section of cells (for example, containing 6 cells) it will push later sections on that element’s timeline 6 cells later. Again, I can understand how sometimes that might be useful, but what if I don’t want that to happen? Often I don’t, but I’m stuck with that happening. Why??

I’m using 4.0 but still… Cell panel?? I don’t see it anywhere, nor is it mentioned anywhere that I can find in the Help/manual. Where should I see it? What should it look like?

Of course there is a lot more to the program, but at this point in time for the particular needs of what I’m doing with the current aptitude I have and the time constraints I have… cutting/copying/pasting/dragging of cells to later sections of the Timeline works terrifically for what I want this program to do. It’s easy, it’s intuitive and it’s a very familiar method of working for me… But it just doesn’t make any sense at all why it would automatically copy the last cell of the previous cell section to the first cell of the next cell section every time, when I usually don’t want that to happen. I shouldn’t be expected to have to use any other method of working… that’s a perfectly great method of arranging the elements in a project, and is what the Help/manual tells you to do. And as I am using that method and perfectly happy with it (but for the cell copying and cell pushing things), I’m just trying to figure out why there would be a “feature” of the program that totally works against the ease of that method by making you go back and delete extra copied cells that you often didn’t want to be copied. A program should do what you want it to do, not what it thinks you want to do. In most cases, I don’t want those extra cells copied, so it’s baffling why it would automatically do that without at least an option to not do that.

You’re trying to sell me a new car when I’m just trying to figure out how to get my current car to run better. I don’t need and can’t afford a new car right now, okay? :slight_smile: If the current car can’t be fixed in that respect, then the manufacturer needs to know that the way the car is “designed to work” is not always in accord with how some people want to drive it.

I can sense a new tutorial coming. -LOL- I do appreciate your thoughts on this, just try to remember that not every aspect of any software will totally suit every possible variation in approach. I just suggest that you keep using the software and perhaps over time you will appreciate things that don’t make sense to you at the moment.

Try the WINDOW menu and the sub-menu option CELLS

As to your desire to have the software changed please feel free to lobby for that, I do all it the time as do many other users. I’m just trying to help you out and show you that there are alternate methods that will get you the result you want. I can copy a cell into the timeline upstream and not have any previous cells effected using the Cells panel instead of copy and paste. But then that’s why they have chocolate and vanilla ice cream to satisfy different tastes. -LOL-

Keep at it and keep asking questions. I’ll do my best to give you answers even if they aren’t always the ones you would like to hear. -JK

Oh hey, I really appreciate your responses. I totally understand that you’re trying to move me onto a path that you think may be better in the long run… but I’m just trying to figure out why one aspect of the program doesn’t work the way I’d like it to in the here and now.

But anyway, okay, so the Cell panel is the little Cells tab over on the side. I didn’t think that was it before because I didn’t see any means of copying/pasting anything from there. So, if I’m understanding correctly, you have to drag the red Timeline slider over to where the new frame is where you want your pasted cell to go… or just click on that target cell in the Timeline… then you have to move the slider in the Cells panel to find the frame that you want to copy, and then that frame will automatically be pasted into that target cell in the Timeline… If I’m misunderstanding, please let me know, but that seems to be how it works.

But if that’s correct, then how can that be easier than just clicking on the cell you want to copy where it is on the Timeline, pressing Ctrl-C and then clicking on the frame you want to paste that cell into and pressing Ctrl-V? It seems like with your Cell panel method that you’ve got at least one extra step in there where you have to move away from the main window where you’ve been working and then slide around in a side panel until you find the one cell you want.

And I think I just realized why we’re having some disagreement or misunderstanding about this… how is that supposed to work for copying/pasting sections of different cells with different cell orders and different combinations of lengths? I think you’re just talking about single cell copying/pasting… I reread your earlier replies and noticed the following (emphasis mine): “Don’t copy and paste cells, it is better to move the frame slider to go to the desired frame and use the Cell panel to select the cell for the current frame.” Also, “I can copy a cell into the timeline upstream and not have any previous cells effected using the Cells panel instead of copy and paste.”

Now, even talking about single cells, I still don’t think that’s really a better or simpler method at all (except that it does avoid the cell copying thing… but that’s not really a plus for the Cell panel method, it’s more of a bug for the copy/paste cells method, which shouldn’t do that, either)… but if you were thinking of only single cell copying/pasting then I can at least understand where you were coming from and appreciate that you might find that easier to do for some reason. Best I can tell, though, the Cell panel only works for copying one cell, and I haven’t just been talking about copying/pasting single cells, but also copying/pasting sections of cells from the Timeline, which may include several different cells in various orders and at various different lengths. Again, all you need to do is select that whole range of cells on the Timeline, press Ctrl-C, then go to where you want to paste that range of cells, and press Ctrl-V. It’s simple… efficient… fluid… wonderful… except for the &*#%in’ cell copying thing!! :stuck_out_tongue: But how does using the Cell panel possibly beat that for efficiency? Unless I’m misunderstanding something, which I certainly may be, then it doesn’t come close to working as well as the old copy/paste method, and in fact the Cell panel can’t even do that at all… well, I suppose it could do that one cell at a time, which would take an insanely long amount of time to do.

But just so I understand… is there a way to copy/paste a section of cells from the Cell panel?? And not just a section of the cells that comprise the cells that are used in an element, but a section of cells in that element’s Timeline that you had previously arranged a particular way with different orders and lengths? If not, then selecting the cells directly from the Timeline and using Ctrl-C and Ctrl-V is definitely the way to go.

And regardless, there is still no good reason I can understand for why an earlier cell should always copy itself to meet up with where you paste what you’ve copied when using the Copy/Paste method. (Or at least, not as the absolute rule… if you want to set that as an option, then fine.) If that’s supposed to be a feature, then it’s really a “feature” and not a feature, if you know what I mean, and Toon Boom should really change that for the next version.

You place cells at frames, but other than having your terms off, it sounds like you have the right idea. Cells are drawings, frames are positions in a time sequence.

You are correct, if you are wanting to repeat a “sequence” of cells from the timeline then the Cells panel is not the way to do that and you must use some other copy and paste method.

You are presenting your case for that right now in this thread and I can tell you for sure that the appropriate people in TBS product development are reading this thread and they will certainly consider your position. But it isn’t up to me, I don’t work for Toon Boom Animation. I personally don’t find this functionality to be a problem and I certainly have more significant enhancements that I would prefer seeing implemented.

But as is usually the case, this feature is already implemented, and you just need to be using the PASTE SPECIAL (ctrl-B ) command. That opens a dialog box, Timeline Paste Preferences, where you have an option to uncheck called AUTOMATICALLY EXTEND THE EXPOSURE. Just uncheck that and paste away. Then for future pasting you can skip the dialog by using PASTE SPECIAL AGAIN ( ctrl-shift-B ) -JK

Aha! Yes! That’s what I was looking for. Thank you.