Creating a GIF from a Sequence of PNGs

Question: When I use FFmpeg1 to convert a bunch of pngs to a GIF, it produces an ugly GIF (see the example script below and Figure 1). How do you use FFmpeg to convert a series of .png images to a high quality GIF in Windows? Example script (creates an ugly GIF):  ffmpeg.exe -r 20 -i HighQual_%6d.png -s:v 2152×1914 -f GIF ffmpeg_HighQual.gif     Solution: Both FFmpeg and ImageMagick2 convert can […]

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Viewing Raster Metafiles With Framer

Background: Framer is an unsupported utility program that was included with discontinued versions of Tecplot 360. It allows you to view files stored in Raster Metafile format and runs independently of Tecplot 360. Raster Metafile is a NASA-defined standard format for storing bit images and may contain one or more images. The last version of Tecplot 360 that included framer.exe was Tecplot 360 2013. As Raster Metafiles (.rm) have become […]

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Converting Raster Metafiles to AVI File Format

Problem: How do I convert raster metafiles to AVI movie file format? The last version of Tecplot 360 that included the rmtoavi.exe was Tecplot 360 2013. Additionally, framer.exe (Framer, the program used to view .rm files) is no longer distributed. As raster metafiles (.rm) have become less common, we no longer include this .rm file conversion in our product. However, we foresee rmtoavi being helpful to users with archives of […]

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Animation Export Size and Format Limitations

Problem: Windows Media Player (WMP) and PowerPoint cannot handle large .mp4 export files (image widths greater than 3000 pixels). Details: MP4 video animation export in Tecplot 360 (as of 2018.2.1) will display properly on Linux (using VLC), MacOS (QuickTime Player), and Windows (Windows Media Player, PowerPoint, and Web Viewer) with one exception: Windows Media Player and PowerPoint cannot handle MP4 image widths greater than 3000 pixels.   Solution: Exporting large WMV […]

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Time Strands and the Zone Style dialog

When working with transient datasets, Tecplot implements “Time Strands”. Time Strands are assigned to a group of zones which represent the same object. For simple transient datasets, sometimes only one Time Strand is used. Whereas more complex datasets will implement multiple Time Strands. For example, if you are plotting a jet, typically there will be one Time Strand per wing, one for the fuselage, and one for the tail. Time […]

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AVI files saved on Mac OS X 10.8.2 do not play in QuickTime.

Problem: AVI files saved on Mac OS X 10.8.2 do not play in QuickTime. Solution: When saving an AVI file on a Mac the produced file will prove incompatible with QuickTime X.  It has been found that QuickTime X does not support many codecs that previous versions used too.  Thus the solution is to use another player. AVI files have been found to work properly on Mac OS X 10.6.8.  […]

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Tecplot 360 and Focus crash on MAC OS X Lion (10.7) when exporting an image

Note: With the release of Tecplot 360 EX the use of XQuartz will no longer be needed.  Tecplot 360 EX is now native to the Mac and thus does not need any use of a X Server client.  This should no longer be an issue. Download the latest release or get a free trial. Problem: I tried to export an image when running Tecplot software (360 and Focus) on MAC OSX Lion, and […]

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Animating points

Problem: I have some files with some scatter points animated to move in constant velocity. However, the movie shows relative motion of the scatter points making the animation appear jerky. Solution: The reason the scatter points look like they are moving relative to one another has to do with the way they are drawn on the screen. Any object drawn to the screen will be rounded off to the nearest […]

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AVI animations on Linux or Macintosh platforms

Problem: I have difficulty playing AVI animations created in my Tecplot product when I try to play them on my Macintosh or Linux platform. When I try to play them on my Linux platform the AVI files work with Xanim but Xanim itself does not work very well anymore. On a Macintosh platform, I use Quicktime but the AVI files that the Tecplot product creates do not open in Quicktime. […]

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AVI animation files are too large

Problem: I can create AVI files in my Tecplot product with the compression set to Lossless Uncompressed to play on a Linux or Macintosh platform but these files are very large. Is there a way to make them smaller but still able to play on these platforms? Solution: Yes. You can encode the uncompressed AVI files to MPEG4 which reduces the size to a fraction of the uncompressed size while […]

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