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Metsys teaches you how to capture video and sound, and how to formulate a blender video tutorial.
Tags:How to Make a Blender Video Tutorial,animation,blender,rendering,tutorial,video,virtualdub
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Welcome to Blender VT and this is a Blender video tutorial for making Blender Video Tutorials. With a great deal of research and common sense I created a pattern for making video tutorials. First, I will briefly talk about what a video tutorial should be and should achieve and then I will go into demo -- on how to actually record your tutorial and do the post processing release to the public.
I guess the first step is to figure out what type of video tutorial it is that you want to do. They should be a feature or technique that you loved in Blender and also pretty good at -- if you are experience in that area that you are making a tutorial for you could get the community some information that they cannot get out to documentation. So, in other words, do not do a tutorial that you do not know anything about. First of, the most important thing in writing a tutorial especially when it is recorded live like this is it needs to be prepared in advance. Write an outline. I cannot express enough how important this is. I do not know if you have noticed this or not but I write most of my dialogue down with a few captions on, when to turn to the screen to show how to do something. Now, this helps a lot and that I say everything that I need to say. My speech is better because it is prepared in advance. And since I have an outline and do not go off track and repeat myself, the tutorials would be as brief as possible which makes the tutorial more effective and the length is more of a contributor to File Slides and the Codec I use. After you have written an outline, go over your outline a few times to refine it and see if there is anything else you need to add to help you as you perform your tutorial.
And now I think it is time to record. I have a copy of your outline on hand as you go through the tutorial. And I personally have a dual monitor set that works pretty well. I have all my outlines in an HTML format and I just put them on my other screen in big text so I can read it and that is why my mouse pointer goes off the screen sometimes. Another alternative of course is to print it out. Okay, now about actually setting up the recording software I found FrontCam works pretty well. It is free and it is fully functional even if you do not register it. You have to set up both FrontCam and Blender in advance, so there are few settings that will make Blender be just the right size in position on the screen. How to make FrontCam capture that same area, if you set it up right and I will show you how to do this? All you have to do is open Blender and open FrontCam, press record and you will capture just the right area that you want.
I have decided to make 800x600 the standard for recording these videos. The reason for this has more to do with the speed of my computer rather than the file size. At 800x600 FrontCam can record 10 frames per seconds on my MD2500 Plus and an 80Gig hard drive. That is 7200 RPM’s. If you do 1024x768 that will about doubles the pixel count so you can expect about 5 frames per second. So first, I want to set up Blender to open up in a small window and make that window the right size in the right position. But chances are you are going to use a resolution higher than 800x600 to do these tutorials. Well, your screen resolution will be bigger than that but you want to make sure that Blender will be 800x600. So, here is what I did. I have made a copy of the Blender shortcut and you can add command line parameters, I hope you will do that. So, dash P is the command line parameter for that and this numbers will take the Blender screen and then put it on the top right hand corner and make it 800x600 or actually rather 801x601. And the reason why I did that is because there is a line on the sides of the -- this are interface that does not really do anything. That line does not show up on the life size so I decide to you know increase that size and cut it out. Alright.
Also these settings rights here are for my 1280x1024 screen resolution so if you are running at something different this number right here will have to be different. Blender starts like if it was --00 like this, Blender will start on that corner so I used that up off set to put it at the top. And if this number is too high and the window tries to go off the screen then Blender will just make the height of the window shorter. So, make sure you get it -- you know just dead on. Alright, so now that you have Blender sort of in the right position. Now want to start up FrontCam. And you’ll notice that it says, this thing -- this will not pop up. The only reason why it is -- in those message because I have two FrontCams running at the same time, alright. So we wanted to -- FrontCam to capture the screen on a fix region. So, go into input, fixed region, click on that and the dialogue box will pop up and here is the settings that you want, 5, 7 and 800x616 and what that will do is if you use those same settings in Blender or at least you get it to be at that top left corner of the screen if you put those numbers in to capture exactly the area that you want. And it will also capture the top 16 pixels of the Blender window and not just so I can chop off the unregistered FrontCam thing.
And for most tutorials, it is not a big deal, but right now I am working on the interface and basics and the fact main menu is covered up and that is going to be a lot. That is going to be taking out the tutorial that should be there. Alright, so we set that up and we want to make sure we use the right codec. Setting the codec is important even though it says that FrontCam will use all the codecs installed on your system. I will see when I believe it because I know I have a lot more codecs installed in this. So, I used Microsoft Video1 and do not slap me yet until I tell you why. My project drive is FAT32 partition so that I can use it both in Windows and in my Linux Distribution which also means that I cannot have a file larger that 2Gig with uncompressed AVI that is only a two minutes of recording. When you set on Microsoft Video1 codec to call the setting of 100 then that is about nearest loses as you can get and that gives me about 20 minutes of recording time before I reach that 2Gig limit. The only issue you will see is that it drops the color coat. So, you will see the small steps on the gradients and it looks like a -- it turns into 15 bit color but that does not matter much because when you encode it in DivX, those gradients smooth out anyway.
Also the Microsoft codec comes with every installed Windows and it encodes very fast and that is definitely a good thing when you are using a real time encoding. But if you have this space in your hard drive and the speed or if you have a RAID to RAID then go ahead and go for it, go for full frames, just remember that the cap will not be on how fast your computer can compress video file or how fast your hard drive is. So take that into account.
And then we have some other settings. Make sure you record you are audio to 16bit, 22 kHz that is the default. And make sure you set your file and you might want to do it different every single time unless of course you want to overwrite you’re the same capture. And advance options, not big of a deal. You might want to turn this off so you do not see a flashing bar on your screen all of the time. Alright, so you just set your filename and then you click the record button and start recording. And then after you have press the stop button FrontCam will take a few minutes to complete the file. My guess is that it is adding the audio to the video and also keep in mind that if you think you have, okay, I have 2Gig available in my hard drive and the captures is going to be 2Gig it is actually going to take 4Gig because it has a temporary file on the same spot and then I will make a copy of it as it analyzes the audio. So keep that in mind.
Alright, so after we have recorded our video we are going to want to close FrontCam and then going to virtual dub swing and do the post processing. Virtual dub is a free program that it is really, really useful and it is totally free and I think you can get it on the sourceforge or freshmeat or you just do a search for it. Or I could just pull up, oh! that is cool. Now, where is our website, it is around here somewhere, but you will do Google search. Alright. So, it is a free program and this is your Windows codecs to convert file types. It also has some basically when your editing and filtering options and also the codec. Any mistakes in better sync your audio to video and that is the first thing that I want to do. If you have to do any editing, do that after you have created the file that has sync video to audio. And here is a little trick that allows you to sync the video to audio without changing the frame rate.
Okay let us open up our capture, alright and then -- alright5 let us make this smaller. If you noticed this first window is the input for the video and this one in the right here is the output for the video. So, if you do any filters or crapping that will show up on this screen separately. Alright so you go to video, you go to frame rate and this option right here that is the quick way out. It will just change the frame rate to match the length of the audio but the problem is with that is if you want to do any kind of post processing or taking files and opening them together they have to be the same frame rate. So go ahead and keep it at 10 frames per second but you see that number right there? Because we are doing 10 frames per second that automatically gives us the ratio of how much the audio was off. Alright, so its 9:92 and that will move the decimal over so it will be .992.
Alright, so how do we know that? We are going to go to audio, we are going to turn full processing mode on. This is also necessary if you want to set the compression of the audio and we will talk about that in a minute. Go to check, use advance filtering and then check filters and then this little window will pop up and you want to add some modules. If you add this in order it will automatically connect them together. So, we are going to add input which is the input stream, stretch, which is the everyone want to use. And then output and that is the output for the video file. Alright, since I did this in order if you want for some, with reason if you want to delete a link through different modules you will just select it until it turns blue, press the delete key. And if you want to connect modules together, just click and drag, off of one of the tabs and then put it over one of the other tabs until the arrow turns green and then let go, there you go. So, I want to either double click or press configure to change the ratio. And remember it was .992. So we are going to click okay. Alright, so there we have it.
Alright so, now that the audio is going to be synced we are just about ready to save. But we are going to have to do some compression settings first. And one thing you will know like this could be a real time preview for the audio or sorry the video stream but right here like it does not do the audio filtering on the fly. So, if you are trying two edits right now your cuts will be off because the video will then be synced. Alright, so that is why you have to save it later, alright, so let us go to compression. And here is all the codec that is installed on your system. If you want to do it later for post processing just go ahead and select the Microsoft Video codec 1 again and then save the file then you can open it up again, make your changes and then change their compression to DivX and this is going to be the final codec that you want to use. Click on configure or bring up a nice long window and I found that 250 is about right for most of this tutorials. If you have a tutorial that has a lot of motion you can go ahead and set the 300. Encoding mode, you want to make sure it will not pass because this other ones will not work or at least do not work with the current version of DivX once you register it. Get that pro DivX version and yes, you will have to download DivX. This is not free pre-installed in your system but most people should have it.
And make sure your encode performance is standard. Go slow if you can but again you have to have the registered pro version or use the trial for 40 days to do it. Alright, so that should about do it for our video settings, click okay. And for our audio go to compression, mpeg layer 3 and make sure you use this quality setting it will -- you know, keep it mono in 22 and add 32KB per seconds. That is about right, it is not -- it is high quality if you think it is, it is about right. If you go down here that is when you notice the significant difference but the difference in size between this two is not that big of a deal and it sure makes up for the lack of sound quality that you have. So, I definitely keep it at higher quality just because we do not want your voice to be constantly washed out through out the entire tutorial because that is where they are going to be paying most attention too.
Alright so we have set everything and just so you know if you go to video filters you can from here do crapping. So, quick add and there is a filter called null transform, click okay, and then if you click on the crapping button it will bring up this big huge window and here you can set the offset for your crap. So, that is how you do that. So you do that and you click okay, okay and here you can see undo stream that it will be a crapped. Alright, now we can save the DivX file and we are done. And if you have recorded the tutorial in two parts you can open to AVI’s together by clicking file and then open your newest thing that you encoded. Now we talk about using the Microsoft Video 1 codec if you wan to save it again so you can do the post processing. So we just click on that and then you can click, open AVI segment and then add your second stream. And remember that you have to make sure you keep the frame rate the same and you will have to do the same steps for both parts because for some good reason if it is -- like, let us say, a file did not really need to be synced but if you try to load it up here anyway it will still think it was encoded differently and it will not do it. So they have to be exactly the same. And then from there you can do your editing, if you want to begin, you press start to start playing and then press spacebar to stop and wherever the cursor is you can set the beginning of the cut with this button right here and it is the end of the code with that button right there and then you go to edit and then delete. And that will take out that segment.
Alright, so that should be everything you need to know. That is how I created video tutorials in Windows. You can also do it with the program called XVID-CAP and the Linux Operating System which we found records at a higher frame rate and you can then use TRANS CO to convert the file but that is for another tutorial and then I will probably have my friend to that one because he is the guy that got that working on his machine which is pretty much the same thing as mine except his, as in video driver and minus ATI Drivers which is what we are thinking the problem is. Because that program has to make a gazillion screen shot cost so, but we found -- we can get that at about 30 frames per seconds in his identical processor and hard drives. All right. So there you go. Until then support the banner community with making your own well-prepared video tutorials and have a good day and happy Blender tutorialling.