PDA

View Full Version : Animoto resolution still problem, and other Animoto stuff


WinsomeWorks
Mar-03-2010, 05:16 PM
I thought there was an Animoto thread here, but I can't find it. If a Smug-hero locates the thread & wants to move this, that's fine. Anyway, I had considered doing the $30 per year Animoto subscription so that I could make videos longer than 30 seconds. But there are still some unresolved questions that make me unsure whether I should do this. First, and most importantly, I thought someone was looking into the problem we SmugMuggers seem to have with our photos when they appear in an Animoto video. All photos that I've used in my videos look great even if displayed very large here on SmugMug-- they're generally between 2400-4000 mp and 2 to 10 MB, etc. However, in the videos the photos look awful when the video is viewed full-screen (on any screen size I've checked, even a laptop). They are very fuzzy and just really un-viewable that way. Anyone viewing has to keep the video in small mode, & at that size they're not great... I mean there's little impact made with such a small video.

So I'd like to know if there's yet an answer to this problem. Is it just the way it is with the 30-second freebies? Or is it the norm even with full-length? It's not good advertising for Animoto either way. If the problem will be solved by doing the $30 membership, I'd like to know this. I would hope that soon, even SmugMuggers with or w/o the $30 membership can see their photos looking good in the Animoto videos.

Another question is: how long is a "full-length" video?? Nowhere on Animoto can I find an answer to this. It should be obvious, with the frequency of the pop-up promotions. If Animoto really wants some new SmugMug customers, a bit of very basic info. might go a long way. If I have no idea what length of video I might be able to make for my $30, and also have no idea if there are other additional capabilities, I'm not encouraged to spend the money.

A couple days ago, I could not even make a video because the only action Animoto would let me do is choose the preview photo. I couldn't highlight photos for any other purpose. Hopefully, that was just a temporary glitch. I would also suggest that Animoto add a category of music to the mP3s available: folk. Folk is a highly popular category these days, and leaving it out means we lose a huge amount of potentially available music... especially with the # of indie folk groups out there who'd probably be happy to contribute. Thanks for any info!

docwalker
Mar-03-2010, 06:28 PM
Anna Lisa, I think this might be the thread you were looking for:

http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=151269&page=2&highlight=animoto

You might want to pose some of those questions to AnimotoBecky. She represents Animoto.

WinsomeWorks
Mar-03-2010, 06:48 PM
Anna Lisa, I think this might be the thread you were looking for:

http://www.dgrin.com/showthread.php?t=151269&page=2&highlight=animoto

You might want to pose some of those questions to AnimotoBecky. She represents Animoto.I'm not sure how to do that. Will she see this? It doesn't look like there's been any response to the resolution issues in that thread, and it was back in November! That was a bug reporting thread, and I'm not sure these things I'm asking about are really bugs.

docwalker
Mar-04-2010, 03:52 AM
Sorry Anna Lisa Becky often replies to these threads. I will send her a message and get her to respond. :thumb

Andy
Mar-04-2010, 03:53 AM
I'm not sure how to do that. Will she see this?

She would if you PMd her I'm sure.... or if you wrote them directly, too. Let us know by contacting our help desk if you need help with getting help from Animoto thanks.

WinsomeWorks
Mar-09-2010, 10:33 AM
She would if you PMd her I'm sure.... or if you wrote them directly, too. Let us know by contacting our help desk if you need help with getting help from Animoto thanks.I haven't seen any response here yet. I don't remember how to PM someone, and am not even sure what her exact handle is anyway.

docwalker
Mar-09-2010, 10:38 AM
AnimotoBecky I have not heard back from my email to her either. I will try tapping one of the other addresses that I have to see if we can get a response.

WinsomeWorks
Mar-11-2010, 07:12 PM
AnimotoBecky I have not heard back from my email to her either. I will try tapping one of the other addresses that I have to see if we can get a response.Hmmm... nothing. Can someone just remind me how to PM someone? I just can't seem to see anything about that anywhere here on my DGrin pages. I only see where I get my own PMs. (I'd like to know for future needs, not just this one) Thanks a mil!

cjyphoto
Mar-11-2010, 11:27 PM
I take a stab at this one. The videos will not look sharp unless you pay the $5 to make them higher resolution. The $30 a year simply allows you to create low res full length videos. If you want the higher resolution you have to pay the $5 per video or choose one of their other plans.

papajay
Mar-12-2010, 05:27 AM
AnimotoBecky I have not heard back from my email to her either. I will try tapping one of the other addresses that I have to see if we can get a response.

I've had a $30 account with Animoto for a while now, but have not created any Animoto videos for a couple of months (I'm not happy either with having to fork over an $5 additional bucks per video for high-enough resolution to be able to actually identify faces in the final product).

Upon seeing this thread....and noting that AnimotoBecky has not responded...I tried logging into my Animoto account this morning and got a "no user account with that email address" reply! Looks suspiciously like Trouble (with a capital "T") may be brewing at Animoto.

aerialphoto
Mar-12-2010, 07:23 AM
Yeah. I'm not going to renew. It's neat but it lacks a ton.

Resolution is the #1 complaint. I have HD credits but the darned thing reports I'm not giving it good enough pictures - but that's because it refuses to copy anything but the low-res images from SM (whether I grab them from the Animoto side, or send them through "buy"). The supposedly "fixed" problem with the watermarks doesn't seem to be fixed, at least not 100% - some have watermarks, some don't.

Finally, once you get a halfway decent video you can't 'tweak' it without having the entire project get remade from the ground up.

graham
Mar-12-2010, 09:37 AM
I also tested the $30 version, even high resd one. Quality is still poor and you are right, that tweaking is an exercise in frustration. It's a great idea, just before its time? IMovie with an export to Quicktime Pro is my work around but takes time. I would vote this a MugDud.

WinsomeWorks
Mar-12-2010, 10:50 AM
Yeah. I'm not going to renew. It's neat but it lacks a ton.

Resolution is the #1 complaint. I have HD credits but the darned thing reports I'm not giving it good enough pictures - but that's because it refuses to copy anything but the low-res images from SM (whether I grab them from the Animoto side, or send them through "buy"). The supposedly "fixed" problem with the watermarks doesn't seem to be fixed, at least not 100% - some have watermarks, some don't.

Finally, once you get a halfway decent video you can't 'tweak' it without having the entire project get remade from the ground up. Hmm, thank you all for offering what you know. This is sad to hear, because I was excited about it and it seemed on first sight to be a very attractive boon to us here at SmugMug. Everyone to whom I showed the videos I've made really liked them, but it was frustrating to only be able to look at them in a tiny box and not full screen or even half screen. The tweaking is also a bummer. And I wish the $30 membership would at least resolve the resolution issues. I still have not heard what "full-length" video means, either!

Here's a skeletal idea for SmugMug and Animoto in their ongoing partnership salvaging and discussions: I can imagine that the resolution issues have to do with storage space on Animoto. Maybe Animoto & SmugMug could work out something where a fraction of the $30 membership (if from a SmugMugger) can be shared with SmugMug, and in return, Animoto wouldn't have to indefinitely store the videos we make there. They could be stored in our SmugMug galleries instead. Even if there were still the 5-min. length limit, I'll bet lots of people would go for this for the benefit of having a high res. video that can be a bit longer. The boon for Animoto is they'd get a bunch more paying customers. Obviously I know nothing of the real workings though, so I realize I'm putting this out there naïvely.

Andy
Mar-12-2010, 11:38 AM
I've had a $30 account with Animoto for a while now, but have not created any Animoto videos for a couple of months (I'm not happy either with having to fork over an $5 additional bucks per video for high-enough resolution to be able to actually identify faces in the final product).

Upon seeing this thread....and noting that AnimotoBecky has not responded...I tried logging into my Animoto account this morning and got a "no user account with that email address" reply! Looks suspiciously like Trouble (with a capital "T") may be brewing at Animoto.
Lane, I'm sure there's an explanation. I'll email AnimotoBecky.

papajay
Mar-12-2010, 12:41 PM
Lane, I'm sure there's an explanation. I'll email AnimotoBecky.

Andy:

I sent a follow up email to Animoto's help desk and did get a response shortly thereafter. Whatever it was that left me out in the cold for a while had either been repaired, or simply went away...so I am able to log back in again.

As others have noted, the Anmoto experience thus far is both exciting and frustrating at the same time.

I sent the following to them in an email reply (and told them I also planned to post it on Dgrin). To their credit, I got a very nice reply a few minutes ago thanking me, stating it was the kind of feedback they're "looking for to improve". They also committed to more proactive monitoring/involvement by Animoto staff on Dgrin.

Here's the central content of what sent:

FIRST: I have a SmugMug account (I’m not a professional photographer, but a fairly avid hobbyist). SmugMug’s Dgrin user community is vocal, knowledgeable, passionate about photography and, I believe, represents an important demographic for Animoto’s future. I noted today that repeated requests in that forum (in the Support section) for input from Animoto have gone unanswered. If Animoto desires strong support from SmugMug’s user base, I’d recommend a more proactive presence on Dgrin.

SECOND: Animoto’s pricing model for relatively high-volume non-professional/non-commercial users like me is prohibitive long-term.

I raised this issue early-on when I signed-up for the $30 per year subscription with Animoto, and got what I believed at the time to be encouraging feedback from Animoto staff (but I’ve seen no tangible results or encouraging news since then). Plunking out an additional $5 bucks for every video to “upgrade” to Hi-Res DVD resolution for suitable viewing by even the “average” person is just too expensive.

I argued that if commercial photographers can’t easily recoup significantly more than the $250 bucks they spend in your current pricing model which gets them unlimited hi-res videos, they don’t deserve to call themselves “professionals” (just one single Animoto-style “wedding video” would, I suspect, suffice to bring-in enough revenue to recoup the investment). But casual hobbyists get zero return on investment other than “satisfaction”.

I also argued that, as a casual hobbyist, I would be willing to spend more than $30 annually (as much as $50, $60, or perhaps even $70….but NOT $250) for “unlimited” (OK, perhaps a limit of 100???) hi-res DVD videos. I strongly suspect that other SmugMug users would agree. The “standard” resolution for Animoto videos, frankly, just plain sucks…nobody that treasures their photos and videos enough to have a SmugMug (or Zenfolio, or other…) paid subscription site would be satisfied using Animoto at standard resolution. Right now, that means plunking down another $5 bucks for even a 3-minute “short”…that’s just too-high a premium. I did 14 hi-res videos in a 3 month span (and haven’t done another one in the past two months because I just can’t justify spending that kind of money as a hobbyist.)

If you don’t change your pricing model, you’ll lose me as a customer. More importantly, I think you’ll lose other SmugMug customers as well. Most importantly, you won’t ENTICE SmugMug and other potential customers to sign-up in the first-place, and continue paying for your product on an ongoing basis. You’ve got a great product…but the current pricing model will, I fear, kill it or cause it to fall way short of its revenue-generating potential.

Regards

AnimotoBecky
Mar-12-2010, 09:48 PM
Hi,

Sorry for the delay! I haven't been near a computer for much of the last week. I'm not sure what the product road map is to address the resolution issue. I'm going to write to our TechGuys now and see if I can get a concrete response. Feel free to write me at rebecca@animoto.com if you'd like to follow-up with more specific questions/concerns.

Andy:

I sent a follow up email to Animoto's help desk and did get a response shortly thereafter. Whatever it was that left me out in the cold for a while had either been repaired, or simply went away...so I am able to log back in again.

As others have noted, the Anmoto experience thus far is both exciting and frustrating at the same time.

I sent the following to them in an email reply (and told them I also planned to post it on Dgrin). To their credit, I got a very nice reply a few minutes ago thanking me, stating it was the kind of feedback they're "looking for to improve". They also committed to more proactive monitoring/involvement by Animoto staff on Dgrin.

Here's the central content of what sent:

FIRST: I have a SmugMug account (I’m not a professional photographer, but a fairly avid hobbyist). SmugMug’s Dgrin user community is vocal, knowledgeable, passionate about photography and, I believe, represents an important demographic for Animoto’s future. I noted today that repeated requests in that forum (in the Support section) for input from Animoto have gone unanswered. If Animoto desires strong support from SmugMug’s user base, I’d recommend a more proactive presence on Dgrin.

SECOND: Animoto’s pricing model for relatively high-volume non-professional/non-commercial users like me is prohibitive long-term.

I raised this issue early-on when I signed-up for the $30 per year subscription with Animoto, and got what I believed at the time to be encouraging feedback from Animoto staff (but I’ve seen no tangible results or encouraging news since then). Plunking out an additional $5 bucks for every video to “upgrade” to Hi-Res DVD resolution for suitable viewing by even the “average” person is just too expensive.

I argued that if commercial photographers can’t easily recoup significantly more than the $250 bucks they spend in your current pricing model which gets them unlimited hi-res videos, they don’t deserve to call themselves “professionals” (just one single Animoto-style “wedding video” would, I suspect, suffice to bring-in enough revenue to recoup the investment). But casual hobbyists get zero return on investment other than “satisfaction”.

I also argued that, as a casual hobbyist, I would be willing to spend more than $30 annually (as much as $50, $60, or perhaps even $70….but NOT $250) for “unlimited” (OK, perhaps a limit of 100???) hi-res DVD videos. I strongly suspect that other SmugMug users would agree. The “standard” resolution for Animoto videos, frankly, just plain sucks…nobody that treasures their photos and videos enough to have a SmugMug (or Zenfolio, or other…) paid subscription site would be satisfied using Animoto at standard resolution. Right now, that means plunking down another $5 bucks for even a 3-minute “short”…that’s just too-high a premium. I did 14 hi-res videos in a 3 month span (and haven’t done another one in the past two months because I just can’t justify spending that kind of money as a hobbyist.)

If you don’t change your pricing model, you’ll lose me as a customer. More importantly, I think you’ll lose other SmugMug customers as well. Most importantly, you won’t ENTICE SmugMug and other potential customers to sign-up in the first-place, and continue paying for your product on an ongoing basis. You’ve got a great product…but the current pricing model will, I fear, kill it or cause it to fall way short of its revenue-generating potential.

Regards

AnimotoBecky
Mar-12-2010, 09:52 PM
Also, we do have streaming hi-res now (but you do need a Pro account or pay $5 for a hi-res credit with a consumer pass), to use that. Info on that can be found at:

http://animoto.com/features/hi-res

These videos can be Embedded at hi-res as well.

Are the people on the thread primarily concerned with the hi-res videos being automatically pushed over to SmugMug? I'm not sure if we'll be switching to a different payment model as suggested on this forum already (but if we do, you all will be the first to know).

So, either the Pro Pass or $5 hi-res upgrade price should solve the resolution problem. I agree we should be pushing the hi-res videos automatically if you have a hi-res video.

I'll let you know if thats something we're planning on doing. And again, feel free to write me at rebecca@animoto.com if you'd like to talk about this more. I'm always open to hearing how we can improve our product for photographers.

WinsomeWorks
Oct-29-2010, 08:02 PM
I thought there was a whole Animoto section, but am not finding it. Can't find answers to my questions elsewhere so far. I paid the extra $3 to make a full-length video plus the extra $5 to make it hi-res, all of which came out quite nice. Here's the gallery where I downloaded it: http://www.winsomeworks.com/Friends/In-Memoriam/Videos-Memory-Sally-Showalter/14395977_TAQ2d#1059648097_dnQD3 . There are some issues such as these:

1. Hard to find any info. on Animoto about what "full-length" means. At this point, I think I learned it can be up to 10 min. Is that correct? However, the caveat seems to be this: it's limited by the length of your music. Few songs are over 3 min. I wish there were a way to add two or more songs to the video to truly take advantage of the "full" length. Is that really and truly impossible? If not, I'd love to know how, as I could not find a way to add another song.

2. On Animoto, I still haven't figured out how to choose photos for different things (featuring, duplicating, being used for the video's thumb, etc.) I just don't understand how that "Preview" thing works, and I've made several videos & tried again & again. The photos I think I've chosen for special attention never seem to have "taken". It's very very confusing. You can't see the result & whether you're doing it correctly until it's made, and then it's too late.

3. Most importantly-- if viewed on Animoto, my video can be made full-screen. I can't find a way to do that here on SmugMug. It can only be viewed in a smaller size-- kinda disappointing. I tried setting my gallery to "originals" thinking that was the problem, but it's not. Here it is on Animoto: http://animoto.com/play/66PONkVx4Cao6767MI1ofg

4.Also, the preview screen for the video on Animoto is much more attractive than the preview screen & thumb on Smug. It's not the same one. Not sure why. And I can only have a square thumb on it here, which looks bad (cuts off my title). The other videos I have here on Smug have rectangular thumbs.

Andy
Oct-30-2010, 04:04 AM
1. Hard to find any info. on Animoto about what "full-length" means. At this point, I think I learned it can be up to 10 min. Is that correct?

10 Mins is the max on SmugMug. So Yeah.


However, the caveat seems to be this: it's limited by the length of your music. Few songs are over 3 min. I wish there were a way to add two or more songs to the video to truly take advantage of the "full" length. Is that really and truly impossible? If not, I'd love to know how, as I could not find a way to add another song.

I found the answer for you, just a simple search for "multiple songs" on Animoto's help site :D
http://help.animoto.com/entries/193296-can-you-pick-multiple-songs-for-your-slideshow


2. On Animoto, I still haven't figured out how to choose photos for Also, the preview screen for the video on Animoto is much more attractive than the preview screen & thumb on Smug. It's not the same one. Not sure why. And I can only have a square thumb on it here, which looks bad (cuts off my title). The other videos I have here on Smug have rectangular thumbs.

Tools>this photo>Replace video preview image an you an replace it with ANY preview image you wish. http://www.smugmug.com/help/photo-tools-menu for more help.

Andy
Oct-30-2010, 04:05 AM
3. Most importantly-- if viewed on Animoto, my video can be made full-screen. I can't find a way to do that here on SmugMug. It can only be viewed in a smaller size-- kinda disappointing. I tried setting my gallery to "originals" thinking that was the problem, but it's not. Here it is on Animoto: http://animoto.com/play/66PONkVx4Cao6767MI1ofg


Where is your video on SmugMug?

WinsomeWorks
Oct-30-2010, 07:38 AM
Where is your video on SmugMug? I linked it in my post... post #18.

Andy
Oct-30-2010, 07:48 AM
I linked it in my post... post #18.
Hmm...

We're showing it at the biggest size we can on SmugMug... I put it in full screen and then Stretch on... it went large and filled the screen.

WinsomeWorks
Oct-30-2010, 08:07 AM
Hmm...

We're showing it at the biggest size we can on SmugMug... I put it in full screen and then Stretch on... it went large and filled the screen. Weird. For me it doesn't go any larger at all when I hit the full screen icon w/ stretch on. Just stays the same size... fills only 1/4 to 1/3 of my screen. Any ideas why this would be? I'm using FF & Vista. If I link this video, I'd rather bring people here to Smug to see it than to Animoto, but if I'm not sure they can see it full screen here, I didn't want to do that.

Yes, I'd forgotten that Smug has the 10 min. limit. Glad for the reminder...thanks. But I was mainly just trying to find out how long Animoto's limit is. They just are not very up-front with some info. before you decide to shell out $ for a PRO membership or a HD or "full-length". And they definitely are not up-front about the huge limitation of having to use one MP3 only! (yes, I read that thread-- got the answer, but it sure wasn't the answer I'd hoped for). It sounds like you can use some other program to patch your MP3s together, but then your music file size will probably exceed their limit anyhow, so it could be useless! Rather strange, actually-- esp. for those folks who have shelled out $250 for the PRO level. Using one song only is very limiting.

Ok, I'm not seeing anything in that help section about replacing video previews. But anyway, I found the tool. It seems I can only replace the preview with a still photo, of exact dimensions. On my other videos, I thought I was able to choose a grab from the video itself. Also, on my other videos I can at least have a rectangular thumb. Why is this Animoto thumb only allowed to be square? And like I said, when you see the video on Animoto, the preview or cover shot is completely different.

Andy
Oct-30-2010, 01:59 PM
It seems I can only replace the preview with a still photo, of exact dimensions. On my other videos, I thought I was able to choose a grab from the video itself. Also, on my other videos I can at least have a rectangular thumb. Why is this Animoto thumb only allowed to be square? And like I said, when you see the video on Animoto, the preview or cover shot is completely different.

You can screen grab any frame you want from your video and make that your preview image. Screen grabbing software is free and easy to use. Get Jing (google for it) for your PC system.

We process the videos differently on SmugMug, so the default preview would of course be different. Good thing you can use our tool to change it how you like, Anna Lisa :thumb

WinsomeWorks
Oct-30-2010, 08:40 PM
You can screen grab any frame you want from your video and make that your preview image. Screen grabbing software is free and easy to use. Get Jing (google for it) for your PC system.

We process the videos differently on SmugMug, so the default preview would of course be different. Good thing you can use our tool to change it how you like, Anna Lisa :thumb This sounds like a lot of work to go to for each video. I'm still confused about why with my other videos I had a choice of frames-- didn't have to go to some outside source to to it.

Ok, and my other questions: First of all, if the thumbnail could just be rectangular rather than square, part of my problem would be solved. I still haven't heard the answer to that. My other videos, such as those in this gallery: http://www.winsomeworks.com/Music/Music-Videos/Solo-Music-Videos/10206254_f92Qf?ao=0#703319394_U5DgU all have original thumbs (i.e. rectangular) instead of the square one I've got with Animoto. Why? And can it be changed?

Lastly, the fact that I can't make my video appear full-screen... Any ideas? As I said, I'd much rather bring traffic here to Smug. But if I don't have any assurance that my guests will be able to make it full-screen, I'm going to link it elsewhere. Bummer, because I'd rather help them find my other galleries here especially since I have other memorial ones here for my friend.

Andy
Oct-31-2010, 05:08 AM
Lastly, the fact that I can't make my video appear full-screen... Any ideas? As I said, I'd much rather bring traffic here to Smug. But if I don't have any assurance that my guests will be able to make it full-screen, I'm going to link it elsewhere. Bummer, because I'd rather help them find my other galleries here especially since I have other memorial ones here for my friend.

I really don't know :( Have you asked Animoto? :ear

Andy
Oct-31-2010, 05:31 AM
First of all, if the thumbnail could just be rectangular rather than square, part of my problem would be solved.

It can. Make a new video preview image - same size as your vid. Tools>This photo>replace video preview The next screen will give you the precise size. Replace the image with the new one, and make SURE that your gallery is set in gallery settings for 'original' thumbnails.

AnimotoBecky
Oct-31-2010, 06:40 AM
Hi,

I apologize if you feel the one song/video isn't totally upfront. We will take that into account when changing messaging on our site around the Pro product. It's not our intent to be misleading.

As for the video appearing full-screen, are you using our Embed code or are you using SmugMug's player page?

Weird. For me it doesn't go any larger at all when I hit the full screen icon w/ stretch on. Just stays the same size... fills only 1/4 to 1/3 of my screen. Any ideas why this would be? I'm using FF & Vista. If I link this video, I'd rather bring people here to Smug to see it than to Animoto, but if I'm not sure they can see it full screen here, I didn't want to do that.

Yes, I'd forgotten that Smug has the 10 min. limit. Glad for the reminder...thanks. But I was mainly just trying to find out how long Animoto's limit is. They just are not very up-front with some info. before you decide to shell out $ for a PRO membership or a HD or "full-length". And they definitely are not up-front about the huge limitation of having to use one MP3 only! (yes, I read that thread-- got the answer, but it sure wasn't the answer I'd hoped for). It sounds like you can use some other program to patch your MP3s together, but then your music file size will probably exceed their limit anyhow, so it could be useless! Rather strange, actually-- esp. for those folks who have shelled out $250 for the PRO level. Using one song only is very limiting.

Ok, I'm not seeing anything in that help section about replacing video previews. But anyway, I found the tool. It seems I can only replace the preview with a still photo, of exact dimensions. On my other videos, I thought I was able to choose a grab from the video itself. Also, on my other videos I can at least have a rectangular thumb. Why is this Animoto thumb only allowed to be square? And like I said, when you see the video on Animoto, the preview or cover shot is completely different.

WinsomeWorks
Oct-31-2010, 09:26 AM
I really don't know :( Have you asked Animoto? :ear Andy, you said you were able to view my video full-screen here on Smug. (post #22) True? So I'm asking you, and anyone who has a clue... is there some reason why I would not be able to, and you would? I said I'm on FF with Vista. I have a 21" screen. Like I said, I can only make the video take up 1/3 to 1/2 my screen, while on Animoto I can view it full-screen. It seems to me if you were able to view it full-screen here on SmugMug, then it's either a SmugMug or browser issue, not Animoto.... right?

WinsomeWorks
Oct-31-2010, 09:33 AM
Hi,

I apologize if you feel the one song/video isn't totally upfront. We will take that into account when changing messaging on our site around the Pro product. It's not our intent to be misleading.

As for the video appearing full-screen, are you using our Embed code or are you using SmugMug's player page? I downloaded the video the way I thought I was supposed to-- with your Animoto section that had the SmugMug icon-- I don't know what it was called. It was all connected with SmugMug already; it downloaded the video into a gallery for me. It took awhile to do, since mine is HD. I think I then moved my video into another gallery where I really wanted it. I did not have to use any embed code or anything, but I don't know what you mean by "SmugMug's player page". I dunno-- for SmugMuggers it's all hooked up already; we just download with the supplied tool.

WinsomeWorks
Oct-31-2010, 09:39 AM
Hi,

I apologize if you feel the one song/video isn't totally upfront. We will take that into account when changing messaging on our site around the Pro product. It's not our intent to be misleading.

As for the video appearing full-screen, are you using our Embed code or are you using SmugMug's player page? When you change your message, I hope you'll also be clear about what "full-length" means. That did not mean anything at all to me, and I can see by the other responses on the site that other people didn't know what it meant either. Does it mean 10 min., 30 min... movies are typically 2 hrs, so I'm sure some people have gone there thinking they could make a movie-length video if they wanted to! And then also be clear that the length is limited by the music and by the size of the music file (that even piecing songs together may not help, due to music file size).

WinsomeWorks
Oct-31-2010, 09:47 AM
It can. Make a new video preview image - same size as your vid. Tools>This photo>replace video preview The next screen will give you the precise size. Replace the image with the new one, and make SURE that your gallery is set in gallery settings for 'original' thumbnails. Too much work. As I said, I never did this for my other vids. The thumbs were automatically original. And I wouldn't mind just having the thumb & preview I have, as long as the words weren't chopped off. I obviously don't have a still photo of it, & am not up to going to yet another outside program, learning how to screen-grab, etc. Couldn't we just make this simple and go back to allowing original thumbs on videos? In this gallery they're still allowed: http://www.winsomeworks.com/Music/Mu...03319394_U5DgU Is it because they're not Animoto, or is this new policy? I didn't have to go through extra steps to make them that way.

Andy
Oct-31-2010, 09:54 AM
Too much work. As I said, I never did this for my other vids. The thumbs were automatically original.

And they will be if you have original set in the gallery, too, when you upload 'em.

WinsomeWorks
Oct-31-2010, 11:47 AM
And they will be if you have original set in the gallery, too, when you upload 'em. Umm-- I have, and have had, original thumbs set in all galleries in question, the second I had any option to do so. Remember, the Animoto vids automatically download themselves originally into a gallery called "Animoto private", within the "Other" category. We don't have a chance to do anything with this gallery until it's all downloaded. If that's the problem, well then we're back to the original problem of Smug defaulting to square thumbs-- it was never a good idea, and here's just one more example of it. Thumbs should especially not be set to square on these galleries you're partnering with outside sites in setting up. Could you not figure something out with Animoto? --Have those galleries default to original, rather than square, thumbs? Almost none of the videos are going to be in a square format, and if the titles are what shows & they will all be cut off, square is just always going to look bad.

At any rate, I moved that video almost immediately to another gallery that was set to original. That should have re-set the thumb, or there should be an option to re-set it like we do for photos, w/o going through a bunch of uploading, outside sites, cropping elsewhere, etc.... And this is all because square thumbs are the default? Yikes.

Andy
Oct-31-2010, 12:41 PM
OK Anna Lisa, make sure "Animoto Private" gallery is set for original thumbs an then transfer the video from Animoto to SmugMug - that'll do it, too. Or download the hires vid from Animoto and reupload it to any gallery on SmugMug you like - making sure the thumbs are set to Original before you upload the video.

You can also do this as soon as you hit the export button on animoto, just go back to your site, /Other category, click settings for Animoto Private gallery and change the thumbs to Original.

Moving the video to another gallery won't reset the thumbnail, sorry.

WinsomeWorks
Oct-31-2010, 01:04 PM
OK Anna Lisa, make sure "Animoto Private" gallery is set for original thumbs an then transfer the video from Animoto to SmugMug - that'll do it, too. Or download the hires vid from Animoto and reupload it to any gallery on SmugMug you like - making sure the thumbs are set to Original before you upload the video.

You can also do this as soon as you hit the export button on animoto, just go back to your site, /Other category, click settings for Animoto Private gallery and change the thumbs to Original.

Moving the video to another gallery won't reset the thumbnail, sorry. Ok, well, originally I didn't even know where my video was going to go, exactly. (this is the first one I downloaded from Animoto). So I think you're saying that any future vids I make there will now go into that same "Animoto Private" gallery? (i.e., they won't set up another one?) Ok, if that's the case, that's good... I'll go set the thumbs on that gallery now, because I do plan to make other vids.

WinsomeWorks
Nov-01-2010, 06:01 PM
Ok, well, originally I didn't even know where my video was going to go, exactly. (this is the first one I downloaded from Animoto). So I think you're saying that any future vids I make there will now go into that same "Animoto Private" gallery? (i.e., they won't set up another one?) Ok, if that's the case, that's good... I'll go set the thumbs on that gallery now, because I do plan to make other vids. Answering my own question-- in case anyone else is wondering: YES!! You can set your "Animoto Private" gallery to originals. Future videos will go into that same gallery. I do not know if you can be pro-active by setting up your own "Animoto Private" gallery, & setting thumbs to original before you ever make any Animoto videos??? Smuggy heroes? Will Animoto find that gallery if you've made it yourself? I don't know. Some other pieces of useful info. I found along the way:

1. You can't "make a copy" of your video here on Smug.

2. You can, however, do "collect photo" on it, to place a copy in another gallery, if you don't feel like moving the original copy from the "Animoto Private" gallery.

3. Visitors will have no problem seeing the collected video, even if the original copy is in that unlisted gallery for Animoto.

4. Even if you keep the thumb as "original", it may or may not display the exact same preview that your Animoto video did. For me, here's what happened: a video made in original Animoto style did show the same preview here as on Animoto. A video made in "Sky" style did not. It showed a sky with my video title over it. On Animoto, that's not the preview.

WinsomeWorks
Nov-01-2010, 06:08 PM
One more Animoto question, then I think I'm good to go for awhile :wink . I really do enjoy this service, btw, when I've finally gotten some of the bugs or details of it figured out... yikes. (Some of that could have been streamlined, imho, rather than all the trial & error & 100s of questions). But anyway-- can Animoto use a gallery full of collected photos to make a video? (I mean virtual copies such as we can now make here on SmugMug) Thanks. Wanted to ask before I collect them.

Andy
Nov-01-2010, 06:16 PM
can Animoto use a gallery full of collected photos to make a video? (I mean virtual copies such as we can now make here on SmugMug) Thanks. Wanted to ask before I collect them.

No, they do not. We're seeing why this is the case.

WinsomeWorks
Nov-01-2010, 06:22 PM
No, they do not. We're seeing why this is the case.
Ok, thanks... good to know. Also, I forgot to tell you that the problem I was having where I couldn't make that one video go full-screen simply disappeared. I don't know why. I made another video, had no problem making that one go full-screen, and then went back to try the first one yet one more time (about the 5th time I'd tried) and then it went full-screen. So-- am gonna hope it was just a fluke. In that case, I will try to link people here to see them rather than Animoto. PS.... here's the gallery I've started for travel videos in case anyone wants to see an example: http://www.winsomeworks.com/Travel/Travel-Videos/14454711_SAiXs#1072488498_ngT3 . The Tibet video (the only one there right now) is only 30 seconds... would have been a freebie except I paid $5 to make it hi-def. I've now gotten the $30 level that will allow me to make longer videos. But I'd still have to pay $5 to make any of them hi-def. (wait a min... hi-def., hi-res... is that the same thing, or not?)

WinsomeWorks
Nov-11-2010, 09:08 AM
More Animoto questions:
Just made a new Animoto video and for some reason, this one kept my watermarks on all the photos in the video. I'm wondering why. The galleries I used for the other two HQ videos I made did not have watermarked photos in the finished product, even though the galleries were entirely watermarked as well. The videos are not supposed to show up w/ watermarks, right?

Is it best to have the gallery you're creating the video with set to "originals" temporarily (while the video is being made) or something? Or doesn't that matter? I didn't know if Animoto could access originals either way, or not. This video also doesn't look very sharp, and I wondered if that's why. (it's HQ)

I don't think that would have been the difference with watermarking though, because I believe I would have had every gallery I've used for videos set at "X3Large" in gallery settings. The watermarked video is here: http://www.winsomeworks.com/Travel/Travel-Videos/14454711_SAiXs#1086519068_tcf6Q It's the "Chimney Rock" one.

Andy
Nov-11-2010, 09:47 AM
More Animoto questions:
Just made a new Animoto video and for some reason, this one kept my watermarks on all the photos in the video. I'm wondering why. The galleries I used for the other two HQ videos I made did not have watermarked photos in the finished product, even though the galleries were entirely watermarked as well. The videos are not supposed to show up w/ watermarks, right?
They will, if your photos are watermarked. Use unwatermarked photos to make your videos.

Is it best to have the gallery you're creating the video with set to "originals" temporarily (while the video is being made) or something? Or doesn't that matter? I didn't know if Animoto could access originals either way, or not. This video also doesn't look very sharp, and I wondered if that's why. (it's HQ)
Does not matter.

WinsomeWorks
Nov-11-2010, 05:50 PM
They will, if your photos are watermarked. Use unwatermarked photos to make your videos.
Does not matter.
Andy--As I said, the other galleries I used were, and are, entirely watermarked as well. Why would this gallery's video show watermarks, while the other two did not? The Tibet one in the link I gave-- that gallery definitely has watermarks, and had them when I made the video. (link to its source gallery is under the video) The other video: http://www.winsomeworks.com/Friends/In-Memoriam/Videos-Memory-Sally-Showalter/14395977_TAQ2d#1072508304_mHTjK came from this watermarked gallery: http://www.winsomeworks.com/Portfolio/Flower-Portfolio/13714824_iVybw#1002512525_FXtzY .

I really want to get to the bottom of this, because this is very bad news to me (that watermarks might show up). For me to un-watermark a gallery just to make a video can represent a LOT of work!! I don't place all watermarks in the same place. Having to place them all correctly again, and also deal with the problem of watermarks not always showing on every size.... arrrggh. There's got to be some factor we're over-looking. I don't think it would be just random behavior. There must be some setting that allows photos to get used on Animoto without their watermarks appearing. Any ideas?

Andy
Nov-11-2010, 06:03 PM
. Any ideas?

Not sure - let us investigate more, please write our Support Heroes (http://www.smugmug.com/help/emailreal) and let us help from the help desk, thanks Anna Lisa.

scorcho
Jun-07-2012, 08:45 AM
So, I had purchased a Sub to animoto for $250/year with the hopes of being able to make slideshows/HD DVDs of my work and utilize ALL the great things they like to promote themselves for. Came out Pixelated every single time,EVEN with the conversion to 720-1080*.As far as customer service,NOthing, no help, no support, in some cases no response at all. So, doing some of my own research, I followed Animotos directions specifically (on YouTube/MAC os) for rendering a HD Dvd disc after creation of my slideshow, and its ALWAYS Pixelated Garbage that is completely unusable. If I pay $250.00 I refuse to pay Another $30. for a HD-Dvd to be mailed to me,THAT, is a scam. Im currently asking for a refund from Animoto,and I will never use their products or services again. Just a heads up to everyone else out there !!!! --Scorcho

gluwater
Jun-07-2012, 10:46 AM
So, I had purchased a Sub to animoto for $250/year with the hopes of being able to make slideshows/HD DVDs of my work and utilize ALL the great things they like to promote themselves for. Came out Pixelated every single time,EVEN with the conversion to 720-1080*.As far as customer service,NOthing, no help, no support, in some cases no response at all. So, doing some of my own research, I followed Animotos directions specifically (on YouTube/MAC os) for rendering a HD Dvd disc after creation of my slideshow, and its ALWAYS Pixelated Garbage that is completely unusable. If I pay $250.00 I refuse to pay Another $30. for a HD-Dvd to be mailed to me,THAT, is a scam. Im currently asking for a refund from Animoto,and I will never use their products or services again. Just a heads up to everyone else out there !!!! --Scorcho
Hi Scorcho. I've emailed you for more details so I can help you with this. Please reply so I can make sure you're taken care of.