Converting an IFF Sequence to a QuickTime Movie

Converting an IFF Sequence to a QuickTime Movie

Maya 2012 Tutorial


How to Convert IFF Sequence to QuickTime QT Movie in Maya



The best way to create a movie in Maya is to render your animation one frame at a time and save your movie as a series of iff files.

By rendering the sequence as a series of iff files, you will save yourself hours if your rendering dies in the middle of the movie. If the rendering quits at frame 100, you only need to re-render from frame 100 on.

Once the iff images are rendered, the images are opened in Fcheck and stitched together as a QuickTime movie. You can also stitch the frames together using After Effects.


Step One

Open a new scene in Maya and start a new project. Save your scene in the project's scenes folder. For more information, set topic, Starting a Project.

Step Two

Add a polygon cube to the stage by choosing Create > Polygon Primitives > Cube.

Step Three

Click the cube, then click frame one of the timeline and press s to set a keyframe.

Step Four

With the cube still selected, click frame 24 of the timeline and open the Channel Box. Change the Rotate Y value to 220 then press Enter, Escape and s to set another keyframe at frame 24.

Step Five

Click the Render Settings icon and click the Common tab.

Step Six

In the File Output section, set the Image Format to Maya (iff). This is Maya's native format. For Frame/Animation Ext, set the value to name#.ext and Frame Padding to 2.

Step Seven

In the Frame Range section, set the End Frame to 24.

Step Eight

To render your movie as a series of iff files, choose Render > Batch Render from the Rendering menu set.

Step Nine

Your movie is now a series of iff files located in the project's images folder.

Step Ten

The next step is to stitch the iff files together as a QuickTime movie. Launch the Fcheck program that's included with Maya and choose File > Open Sequence.

Step Eleven

Click the first iff file and click Open. The entire sequence is imported.

Step Twelve

Choose File > Save As Movie. Name your movie, set a location and press Save.

Step Thirteen

Open your new movie with QuickTime Player or a similar application to view the QuickTime movie.

What is Padding

In Step Six, you set the Frame Padding to 2. This means that each of the iff files will have two number characters added after the file name. In other words, the value of two will work as long as you have less than 100 frames. If you are rendering 100 to 999 frames, set the Frame Padding value to 3.

QuickTime Settings

Using this method you do not have access to any QuickTime settings (i.e., compression, colors, etc.). For more control, try importing your iff files into After Effects. The final movie can then be rendered in After Effects, giving you access to the QuickTime settings.

Why Does the Movie Play so Fast?

In Step Eleven you may notice your movie playing too fast in Fcheck. To see your movie in real time, deselect the checkbox labeled Every Frame. You can now adjust the playback speed by clicking the plus and minus Speed buttons.

A shortcut for toggling the checkbox is to press the e key.


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