VFB2 User Guide

Don't Panic! Just RTFM.

Please note, this manual is printer friendly.

 

Introduction

Thanks for taking the time to try out Video Fun Box 2. The Video Fun Box 2 (VFB2) interface can seem a little intimidating to new users. However, it’s really very simple, which it why we’ve written the words “Don’t Panic” at the top of this manual in large friendly letters ;-). While VFB2 represents a radical departure from the VFB 1 interface, it’s relatively intuitive and easy to learn. Please read through this manual as it’s designed to answer all the questions you might have about using the program. If you have questions about VFB2 that aren’t answered in the manual then please contact our hyper efficient and super friendly support team via email contact@jellypie.co.uk

Random Start

When you start VFB2 for the first time it’ll play a random sequence from the preset sequence folder. It might looks something like this:

Special Effects 01

Or this...

Special Effects

Or even this. Who knows, it’s random!

Special Effects 03

 

 

 

The demo version of VFB2 comes bundled with lots of sample sequences. The full version has even more! Many of the sample sequences are designed to illustrate some of the features of the program. You can easily recognise these sequences, as they are numbered. For example, 001-Pan-and-Zoom.vfb will demostrate Pan and Zoom.

 



Opening the Control Deck

You can start using VFB2 by pressing the button on the toolbar to open the VFB2 Control Deck. The Control Deck features a number of tabs:

Text Controls

Star Controls

Particle Controls

Tunnel Controls

Tile Controls

Blur Controls

3DS Model Controls

Picture Controls

Key Frame controls

The ins and outs (and ups and down and, indeed, lefts and rights) of operating these controls are covered in detail in the Control Deck section.


VFB2 Control Deck

Quick Start

With the VFB2 Control deck open, click the Key Frame Controls Tab. This tab is split into two sections, Key Frame Control and Sequence Selection

In the Sequence Selection section click the Combo SelectButton next to Add to Presets. This will open a drop down list of the preset sequences included with the VFB2 Demo. Select one of these and it will automatically load and start to play. Once a key frame sequence has stopped playing (or even while it is playing, if you’re feeling adventurous) you can drag the timeline pointer backwards and forwards on the timeline. The sequence will play forwards and backwards as you do so.

Modifying Preset Sequences.

Once a preset sequence has loaded you can modify it in a number of ways. You can change the textures used, you can change the text, change the font and text rendering setting, add blur effects and change the images. Since we’ve included over 100 preset sequences with the program (comming soon), modifying these sequences provides a lot of scope for creativity.  The best approach is to experiment, who knows what you’ll come up with!

Key frames

One of the most requested features we’ve had since the launch of Video Fun Box 1.00 was for a key frame animation control system to be introduced.  We listen to feedback from our customers, so after about 18 months of blood sweat, tears and caffeine, key frame animation is now at the very core of Video Fun Box 2.

 

What is a Key frame?

In animation, a key frame is a significant frame in an animated sequence of frames drawn or otherwise constructed by the user. Historically, in the world of cartoon animation when all frames were hand drawn by animators, the senior artist would draw the key frames, leaving the "in between" frames to an apprentice. Now, the animator creates only the first and last frames of a simple sequence; the computer fills in the gap. This is called tweening.

 


VFB2 Key Frame Tutorial

The key frame system in Video Fun Box 2 is very simple. We can’t emphasize this enough. Some people might argue that it’s too simple! Since a picture is worth a thousand words, here’s a short five step tutorial on how the Video Fun Box 2 key frame system works.  Follow this tutorial and you’ll soon have mastered the VFB2 key frame system…

My First Key Frame SequenceStep One...

Open the VFB2 Control Deck and Select the Text Controls Tab. Left click on the view port and move your mouse (while still holding down the left mouse button) to rotate the text through 45 degrees on the Y axis. Click and hold the right mouse button while moving the mouse to rotate the text on the Z axis.

 

See, you’re already getting to grips with the control system! Alternatively, you can adjust the slider controls to modify the rotational values of the text. Left click on the text box where the text says “Video Fun Box”. Delete this using the keyboard (just pretend you’re using a really simple word processor) and type in “My First Key Frame Sequence”.

 

 

 

 

 

Keyframe Controls

 

Step Two...

Next, select the Key Frame Controls and click Add Key to add a key frame at frame zero on the timeline. VFB2 doesn’t calculate any tween frames when a keyframe is added to position zero on the timeline. All the values for all effects are stored, so the calculations can be performed when the next key frame is added.

 

 

 

 

 

Step Three...

Click the Text Controls Tab to switch control back to the text controls. Click the combo arrow under Text Controls and Select Pan & Zoom from the drop down selection box. The mouse controls and sliders will now manipulate the Pan and Zoom on the text. Zoom out by holding the right mouse button and moving the mouse. Left click and move the mouse to pan the text around. Pan the Text to the bottom right hand corner of the screen. Click the arrow tab again and select Twist Text. Move the Top Slider half way across it’s range to the right.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Step Four...

Click on the Key Frame tab to switch back to the key frame controls. Left click on the timeline pointer and drag it to the middle point (frame 150) of the timeline. Click the Add Key Frame button. Once a key frame is added beyond position zero, all the values for all effects are recorded to that key frame and the tween frames are automatically calculated.

 

Step Five...

Click the Timeline pointer and drag it backwards on the timeline to position zero. The sequence will play back in reverse as you drag the pointer. When the timeline pointer is back at position zero, click the Copy Key Frame Button. This copies all of the values from the selection position on the timeline. Drag the timeline to position 300 on the timeline (the final frame) and click Paste Key Frame. This will paste the key frame values that you’ve just copied back to the timeline at the position selected by the timeline pointer.

 

Click the play button to watch the sequence you’ve created playback. Because frame 0 and 300 contain the same values, you have just created a seamless loop. Well done! All of the other effects can be included a in sequence and controlled in exactly the same way as you manipulated the text. Try it and see! Don’t be afraid to mix and match different effects. Video Fun Box 2 is a creative tool, experiment with it and be creative! You’ll be amazed at the quality of the effects you can produce in next to no time!

Making Seamless Video Loops.

Without blowing our own trumpets too loudly, the Copy Key Frame button is the feature that makes VFB2 worth its weight in gold. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to realise that you can save a fortune by making your own seamless video loops rather than buying them. VFB2 can give your video productions an edge, no matter what they are. You can even sell loops you create in Video Fun Box 2!

Limitations of the Video Fun Box 2 Key frame system

The simplicity of the Video Fun Box key frame systems comes at a price. Video Fun Box 2 does not support layers of key frame animation. What this means is that if you want to use more than one effect at a time, they have to share key frames. While this is somewhat less than ideal, with planning you can still easily produce some truly stunning video effects as you can see by playing back the preset sequences included with the demo.

Also, you can’t write key frames to a point on the timeline where the tween frames have already been calculated. Basically, key frames have to be added to the timeline in sequential order and cannot be edited once they have been committed to the timeline. However, you can append key frames to the end of the sequences without problems. This means to can add to any of the preset sequences bundled with the program, or build your own lengthy sequences over a period of time.

Video Fun Box 2 Control Deck

Video Fun Box Control deck

All of the effect controls in VFB2 are laid out in the same manner. Each effect has its own tab accessible from the top of the Control Deck and each has three slider controls. The selection made in the combo box above the sliders determines which of the effect parameters the sliders control. This means we can include a large number of controls in a relatively small amount of space. If you’ve familiar with the endemic dialog clutter of VFB1, then we’re sure you’ll agree, this is a great improvement!

Common Control Deck Elements

The seperate effects in VFB2 are accessed through the tabs along the top of the control deck. While individual pages of the Control Deck have unique controls, you can access the Video Export Options dialog and Export Video from all of the Control Deck pages. These buttons are located below the three sliders on each Control Deck page.

Text Controls

Text Controls

 

Many, many years ago (well, 2003 to be precise) Video Fun Box 1 was originally conceived as video titling program. Although the program is now intended to do far more than just titling, it has comprehensive title animation features included and the text control tab is the busiest tab in VFB2. In addition to a wide range of Key Frame Slider Controls there are also independent controls that configure how the text is rendered. Let's take a look at these controls in detail.


 

Text Slider Controls

 

  • Text Rotate
    Rotates the text on the X, Y and Z axis. You can also control text rotation with your mouse. Hold left click and move your mouse to rotate X and Y. Hold right click and move the mouse to rotate on the Z axis.
  • Text Pan and Zoom
    Pans the text left, right, up, down and zooms in and out. You can also control the pan and zoom using your mouse. Hold left click and move the mouse to pan. Hold right click and move our mouse to zoom in and out.
  • Colour Font
    Controls the colour of the text. All slider control setting can be key framed. This means you can change the colour of the text during a sequence. As well as using the slider to select the colour you can also use the Font Colour button to select the colour you want from a dialog selection. This makes picking the colour you want a lot easier.
  • Colour Background
    Background colour selection is controlled by the sliders in the same way as the font colour is. As a result, you can key frame the background colour. Unlike font colour you can only select the background colour using this sliders. There wasn't enough space on the interface to include a button to do without having a detrimental effect on the minimalist interface design. Let us know if you really want a background colour selection button!
  • Twist Text
    The twist text option lets you twist and twirl the text in tangled chaotic patterns. When used in conjunction with the other text controls you can created intricate text animations.
  • Line Spacing
    Controls the spacing between lines of text in 3 dimensions.
  • Character Spacing
    Controls the spacing between characters in 3 dimensions. When used in conjunction with Twisted text you can create some amazing text animations.
  • Spot Light Position
    Pans the spot light left, right, up, down and zooms in and out. You can also control the pan and zoom of the spot light using your mouse. Hold left click and move the mouse to pan. Hold right click and move our mouse to zoom in and out.
  • Spot Light Colour
    Controls the colour of the spotlight.
  • Text Scale
    Scales the text on the X, Y and Z axis. You can use your mouse as well as the sliders to control the scale of the text. Scale the Z axis to add addtional depth to 3D Text.
  • Fade Alpha
    Use the Fade slider to fade the text in and out.

Text Setting Controls

The Text Settings can be found in the middle of the Text Controls tab in a drop down menu above the buttons. It’s important to note, while the text rendering settings are saved to the “.vfb” sequence file, they cannot be key framed. This means you can’t switch between rendering styles during a sequence. In turn, what this means is that you can change any or all of the text rendering settings in a preset sequence once it’s loaded, so you can easily customise any of the preset sequences.

 

Reflection Mapped Text

Reflection Mapped Text

 

This is the classic chrome metal effect from VFB1. This effect works best with rotating text,

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glass Style Text

Glass Style Text

This effect is essentially the same as reflection mapping but with transparency applied. This gives the text a glass like appearance. Glass text is not very effective against a white background, since you can't see it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Single Colour

Single Colour Text

Sometimes simple, single colour text is more effective in a title sequence than brash chrome or gaudy glass. Don’t forget to activate the lighting to give single coloured text some depth.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Texture (Object)

Texture Mapped Text

Simple, no frills texture mapping. As with single colour text, activating lighting adds depth to the text. Click the load texture button to load a texture. VFB2 ships with a number of special created seamless textures. These are included in the "Texture" folder.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Texture (Eye)

When this option is selected, the Texture isn’t mapped to the text.  Instead, the text swims through the texture. This effect is very difficult to explain in words and can’t be represented by a static picture. Try it and you’ll see what we mean!

 

Wire Frame Text

Wire Frame Text

With the wire frame option selected, the text is rendered with lines.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Solid
Select Solid to turn off Wire Frame.

 


Shiny Texture On

Shiny Textured Text

 

 

Activate Shiny Texture to add a glossy sheen to the text. This effect can be applied to any text rending setting. For example, you can create Shiny Reflection Mapping, Shiny Glass, Shiny Texture (Object and Eye), Shiny Wire Frame, and Shiny Solid text.

 

 

 

 


Shiny Texture Off
This turns the Shiny texture off.

 

Text Control Buttons

Directly under the Text settings drop down you'll find the text control buttons.

 

Text On/Off
This button toggles the text on and off. All of the other effects can be enabled or disabled via an On/Off button in the same position.

 

Change Font
Click this button to change fonts. VFB2 can load any True Type font. When you click this button you'll see the Font Selection dialog.

 

Load Texture
Click this button to load in a texture. The default texture for the text is Gold.jpg which works well with the Reflection Map text setting.

 

Font Colour
Click this button to change the colour of the font using a color picker dialog.

 

 

Text Control Miscellaneous

Lights On / Off

This control toggles the lights on and off.

 

 

Star Controls

Star Controls


The old Star effect from VFB1 makes a return in VFB2. The big difference is you now have complete control over the position and movement of the stars which enables you to create some stunning effects.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Star Rotate
Rotates the Stars on the X, Y and Z axis. You can also control Star rotation with your mouse. Hold left click and move your mouse to rotate X and Y. Hold right click and move the mouse to rotate on the Z axis.

 

Star Pan and Zoom

Pans and Zooms the stars around the screen. You can also control Star Pan and Zoom with your mouse. Hold left click and move you mouse to pan on the X and Y axis. Hold right click and move the mouse to zoom in and out.

 

Star Direction [X] Star Space [Y] Star Spin [Z]
This option contains three diverse controls. The X slider (slider 1) controls the direction of the Stars. Move the slider to twirl the stars around. The Y Slider (Slider 2) controls the space between individual Stars and the Z slider spins the stars.

 

Number of Star [X] Alpha Fade [Y]

The first slider controls the number of stars. The second slider controls the Alpha or transparency values of the star effect. You can use both of these sliders to make the stars appear and disappear.

 

Star Colour [Red] Star Colour [Green] Star Colour [Blue]

The colour of the stars are completely key frameable. You can key frame changes in colour values to create a diverse range of effects. You need to turn off Multi Color (by clicking the button) to activate this feature.

Star Control Buttons

 

Stars On / Off

Use this button to toggle the Stars On and Off.

 

Load Texture

Click the Load Texture Button to load a Texture. 14 particle textures are including with the program that work well with the star effect.

 

Multi Color On / Off

By default the stars are draw multi-colored. You can overide this setting by clicking this button to turn off multi-color mode. The color of the stars will now be controlled by the star color sliders.

 

Reset

Click the reset button to restore the star effect to its default state.

 

 

Particle Controls

Particle Controls

VFB2 features an all new particle engine which is vastly more flexible than the particle engine in VFB1. Such is the nature of progress!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Particle Rotate

 

Particle Position

 

Particle Gravity 1

 

Particle Gravity 2

 

Particle Scale

 

Particle Colors

 

Particle Age and Speed

 

Particle Direction 1

 

Particle Direction 2

 

 

 

 

Particle Control Miscellaneous

 

Number of Particles

 

 

Tunnel Controls

Tunnel Controls

 

The Tunnel effect from VFB1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tunnel Control Miscellaneous

Tile Controls

Tile Controls

 

 

The Demo Version of VFB2 features 30 low res seamelss textures (256x256) designed for use with the Tile effect. The full version of VFB2 features an additonal 60 high res (1024x1024) textures. We call it the Tile Effect because it tiles textures together to create a seamless texture field. With the right texture this can be used to create a great looking backdrop for a title sequence. The tile effect can also be used to create seamless video loops.

 

 

 

Tile Slider Controls

 

Quad Rotate

Rotates the textured quad on the X, Y and Z axis

 

Quad Position

Pans and Zooms the selected Quad on the X, Y and Z planes.

 

Quad Roll

Rolls the texture of the selected Quad on the

 

 

Tile Control Miscellaneous

 

You can control two independant layers of tiles by selecting between to radio buttons (Tile 1 Settings and Tile 2 Settings). This allows you to switch control between tile layer one and tile layer two. For example when Tile 1 Settings is selected, the slider controls control Tile layer 1. When Tile 2 Settings is selected, the sliders control tile layer 2. You can make tile layers 1 and 2 transparent and or visible/invisible by checking the check boxes.

 

Blur Controls

Blur Controls

The blur effect is great for enhancing many of the other effects.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Blur Control Miscellaneous

3DS Model Controls

3DS Model Controls

So what is a 3DS model? Basically, a 3DS model is a specific type of 3D model normally generated in a software package called 3D Studio Max. This is essentially the industry standard 3D modelling package. 3D Studio Max can roughly be described as the Adobe Photoshop of 3D Modeling. You can find more information about 3DS here.

 

The Demo Version of VFB2 only comes with a couple of 3DS models. When you buy it, the full version has many, many more included. The 3DS Model effect is one of the most problematic effects in VFB2, but it's also one of the most rewarding and certainly the effect with the most creative potential.

 

Before looking at this effect in detail, we'd better point out some of its limitations. The relative size of 3DS models varies depending on the ratio of meters to the original units of the model when it was created. In order to get around this problem, you can alter the way VFB represents these units. This affects the relative size of the 3D model once it has loaded into VFB2. The best units setting depends on the size of the original models. Therefore, the best approach to take is to experiment!

 

The Video Fun Box 2 3DS import routine is far from perfect and will not load in every type of 3DS model. While there are pently of royalty free 3DS models available to download from the net, VFB2 might not be able to load all of these. In some cases you can use a third party program (3D Milkshape) to load in a 3DS model. If you then export the model from 3D Milkshape in 3DS format, VFB2 should be able to load it.

3DS Model Slider Controls

 

Model Rotations

 

Model Positions

 

Model Scale

select this option to manipulate the scale of the 3DS model. This provides an easy way to distort models. Panning or rotating around inside a distorted 3DS model can produce some amazing effects!

 

Defuse Light Colour

This controls the colour of the defuse lighting on the scene.

 

Spot Light Position

The spot light on the 3DS model works almost exactly like it does on the text.

 

Model Fade Alpha and Texture Position.

The texture position controls on a 3DS model is one of the most powerful and flexible effects in VFB2. These controls allow you to adjust the position of the texture on the 3DS Model. This lets you dynamically move the model's skin on the X or Y axis. Since the radial blur effect is applied on the texture level, you can create dynamic moving radial blur effects.

 

You can fade the model in and out using the Alpha controls. Using this method you can use a 3DS model as an invisible template for a complex radial blur effect.

 

 

3DS Model Control Miscellaneous

 

 

 

Picture Controls

Picture Controls

The picture controls in VFB2 are powerful enough to make the program act like a reasonably well specced software rostrum camera. While the demo version of VFB2 only comes with two royalty free images, when you buy the full version it comes bundled with hundreds of them (comming soon)!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Picture Control Miscellaneous

Key Frame controls

 

Key Frame Control Miscellaneous

Preset Sequences

The Demo version of Video Fun Box 2 ships with around xxx preset sequences. The full version has over 100. You can select a preset by picking the item you want from the drop down menu. When you want to save a preset you can add it to the VFB2 Sequence folder by clicking the "Add Preset" button. Please note, there is no restriction on saving presets in the demo version. You can create as many as you like. When you upgrade to the full version of VFB2 all you need to do is copy your presets to the new sequence folder created when you install the full version!

 

Exporting Video (AVI's) From Video Fun Box 2

VFB2 can only export an AVI video clip once there is something on the timeline to export. If you don't want to create your own sequences you can load in a preset sequence and export an AVI of that. VFB2 will export the AVI file to whatever location you specify in the format defined in the AVI Export Settings on the Options Dialog.

Options Dialog

Video Fun Box 2 Options Dialog

The Options Dialog contains a number of important settings that control how VFB2 behaves.  

 

AVI Export Settings
Ultimately, the reason VFB2 exists is to export video clips. You can select the Format of the AVI you'd like to export from the drop down menu. If there's a setting not included that you'd like us to add then please contact us.

 

Lock Video Fun Box to AVI Export Frame Rate
This does pretty much exactly what it says. On super fast systems the OpenGL graphics that Video Fun Box 2 generates can be created so quickly that it's impossible to gauge how fast a seqeunce will play when it's rendered as an AVI. Activate this option to restrain the frame rate to match the output format. The frame rate is displayed in a box just below the Preset Sequence Selection on the Keyframe Control tab.

 

Random Sequence on Start Up

Primarily we included the Random Sequence of Start Up as a means of show casing some of the effects that Video Fun Box 2 is capable of producing. However, we do appreciate that this feature can be annoying, so you can disable it by removing the check mark next to this option.

 

Resize Screen to Match AVI Export Settings

Since the geometry of the screen can effect how the effects are rendered, this option ensures that the viewport is approximately the same size as the AVI video clips you will eventually export. We say approximately, since the exact size of the view port depends on factors that are under your control, such as Windows Font Size.

Video Compression Options

Video Compression Options

Now for the science bit... VFB2 uses what's technically known as the Video For Windows or VFW AVI export library. After you've selected where you want to save your VFB2 AVI clip you also have to select a Video Compression Codec to use. The default option of Full Frames [Uncompressed] will produce very high quality files that are uncompressed and therefore asbsoultely massive. This is hardly surprising when you consider that it does exactly what its name suggests. It writes each frame of your sequence to the AVI file without using any compression technology at all. Therefore a 300 frame clip is roughly equivalent in size to 500 separate 24bit bitmap files. As a result, these files take up a lot of hard drive space. This is where the codec selection combo box comes into play. If you've been using a variety of video editing software or if you watch a lot of movies and video clips on your machine, you're likely to have accumulated a wide range of video codec’s. Every VFW compatible Video Codec installed on your machine is available for selection from the codec selection combo box in Video Fun Box, but the default settings of these codec’s often leave a lot to be desired in terms of Video quality.

Fortunately it's easy to fix. By clicking on the Configure button once you've selected a codec, you can, in most cases, alter the default settings in order to increase the quality of the Video. Take DIVX for example. When you select this codec and click the configure button, you'll be greeted with a complex codec cofiguration screen. Selecting the optimal setting for a DIVX Avi is an art form in itself and there are several websites devotes entirely to this subject. For a fast and dramatic improvement in visual quality, just drag the bit rate slider up until the bit rate is around 1000. While this will result in an increase in the AVI file size, the file will still be much smaller than a Full Frames Uncompressed AVI. The same is true of most other Video Codec’s.

Please note, AVI writing is disabled in the Demo version of VFB2 . We've done this as we want you to buy VFB2. The full version of VFB2 lets you export as many AVI files as you want.

 

 

 

Key Frame Control

 

                                    
Video Fun Box 2 Quirks and Foibles…

There are some aspects of VFB2 functionality that are less than obvious and somewhat non standard. For example, the save routine was designed with portability in mind. While you can load an image, texture or 3DS Model from any location on your local PC or network, when you save the sequence VFB2 will map the location of the file to its local folders. The folder it maps to will depend on the effect you load the image or model into.

Effect Folder
Text Textures
Star Particles
Particles Particles
Tunnel Textures
Tiles Textures
Pictures Images
3DS Models Models


For example, suppose you load a new texture file called “sand.jpg” into the text effect from a folder on your C drive called “My Textures”. When you save the .vfb file, VFB will record the location of the Texture as “Texures/sand.jpg” (relative to the Video Fun Box 2.exe). Therefore, you’ll need to copy external textures, images and models to the appropriate VFB folders if you want to use them with saved sequences.

Portability

So why did we implement the save system like this? The answer is that it makes Video Fun Box 2 completely portable. For example, you can copy the “Video Fun Box 2” folder from “Program Files” to any type of USB mass storage device. It can then run on another PC system directly from the storage device without needing to be installed. This means you can run the program on machines where you don’t have installation rights. You can share Sequence files with other Video Fun Box users by zipping up the Sequence folder, plus any of the other VFB folders that the sequence needs to access. It allows us to produce Sequence packs that will work with any installation of Video Fun Box, irrespective of where the program is installed on a given system.

 

TGA and the Particles

Currently the Particle effect will only load in TGA files. There’s no specific reason for this. The programmers made it like that and we never got around to fixing it. We’re only a small development team with finite resources and limited time. That’s our excuse and we’re sticking to it!

Font Selection Dialog

MFC font dialog

The font selection dialog has a box on it for selecting the size of the text. Since the text in VFB2 is rendered in 3D, the size is dependant on how close to the “camera” the text is. Therefore the size selection on the font dialog doesn’t do anything. So why is it still in the program? Hmmm… This is primarily due to laziness on the part of the programming team and lack of will on the part of the developers. The font selection dialog is what’s known as a common MFC control and is standard part of Windows. The size selection is a default part of it and there’s no way to easily disable it. One day we’ll get around to developing our own font selection dialog. One day…

 

 

 

 

Color Picker Dialog

colour picker dialog

Several of the effects use the color picker dialog. This lets you pick colors from a palette, rather than using the sliders. The selection process works in two ways. You can click on the basic colors to make a quick selection. Alternatively you can pick exactly the color you need by dragging the cross hair around the palette to select the colour range, then moving the slider on the right hand side of the picker up and down to pick the brightness of the color. When you've got the colour you want, click the Add to Custom Colors button. Click on the Custom Colour, then click OK.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Miscellaneous Help

NVIDA Drivers: Out with the Old, In with the New

We've recently discovered a problem that affects Video Fun Box on systems with Nvidia graphics cards. When you update your Nvidia graphics driver, you should always insure that you completely uninstall the old driver before you install the new driver. Once the old driver has been removed from your system you should reboot before installing the new driver. Failing to do this can cause a conflict between the old and new drivers. Elements of the old driver can get left behind. These can cause problems with OpenGL (the graphics system that Video Fun Box uses).

If you notice graphical corruptions on the screen, or if elements of the Video Fun Box GUI fail to work correctly or cause the program to crash, this can be due to an incorrectly installed Nvidia driver. In some cases an incorrectly installed driver can even prevent Video Fun Box from running.

In all cases this problem can be solved by uninstalling the graphics driver, rebooting then reinstalling the driver or installing a new driver.

Problems importing NTSC AVI's in Pinnacle

There is a problem with Video Fun Box NTSC Avi's in Pinnacle. This is due to Video Fun Box 2 exporting NTSC AVI's at 30 frames a second rather than 29.97 frame a second. Most editing packages automatically adjust the frame rate of imported footage, but Pinnacle doesn't. However, there is a work around that will allow you to use Video Fun Box NTSC .AVI's with Pinnacle. It's not ideal, since it requires the use of a third party software package, but at least the package is free.

 

RAD game tools produce an excellent little Video conversion package called RAD Video Tools. Since the problem is due to Video Fun Box producing NTSC Avi's with a temporal resolution of 30 frames a second (rather than the
29.97 required by Pinnacle) you can use RAD Video Tools to alter the frame
rate of VFB AVI's. You can download it here

Here's how you can convert Video Fun Box 2 NTSC AVI's for use in Pinnacle:


1. Export your NTSC AVI from Video Fun Box 2 and save it to disc.
2. Open RAD Video Tools and Select the AVI
3. Click the "Convert a File" button
4. Alter the frame rate to 29.97 in the "Force (no adding or removing)
to:" box
5. Click Convert and select the same codec you used in Video Fun Box to
create the AVI
6. Load it into Pinnacle Studio.


We realize this is a rather long winded process just to use a Video Fun Box 2 AVI in pinnacle, so we're currently investigating ways to allow users to alter the frame rate of VFB AVI's. However, this is proving slightly problematical, since our AVI engine was only designed to produce AVI with whole integer frame rate values. Most Video Editing packages work on the principle of converting the frame rates of component AVI's on the fly, so in many cases this doesn't present a problem. Pinnacle doesn't appear to be able to do this, which as a shame since it's one of the most popular home
editing packages.

Problems Starting the Program

If you don’t have Opengl graphic drivers installed, the program will fail to start with a “Failed to create empty document” error. Opengl graphic drivers are included in drivers for all major graphic cards. In most cases, installing the latest drivers for your graphics card will solve any start-up issues.

How Can I Find Out What Sort of Graphics Card I Have on My System?

Open the Control Panel and double click on the System Icon. Click the Hardware Tab and Click on Device manager. Click the “+” to expand “Display Adaptors”. Right click on the device shown and select properties. The type of graphics card you have is shown under the General tab.

A Few Words About Graphic Card Drivers

If your graphics card is made by a company that licenses technology from a company like ATI or Nvidia, then there's a very good chance that the driver supplied with your card is out of date. This is because, in most cases, third party manufactures use very early reference drivers that just about get the hardware working. It can take months (or sometimes years) for drivers to be perfected in order to milk the best from the hardware. Frequently, upgrading to the chipset makers latest driver will significantly improve system performance. Below is a list of graphic card manufacture's and their websites. It's a long way from being comprehensive, but since the graphics market is currently dominated by ATI and Nvidia, it should suffice in most cases.

Graphic Card Manufacturers

3DLabs
Developer of high end workstation graphics cards.
ATI Technologies
Manufacturer of the Radeon line of video cards and graphics chips.
Matrox Graphics
Manufacturer of the premier line of workstation 2D and multidisplay graphics cards.
NVIDIA
Developer of the most widely used video graphics processors used in the PC hardware market.
SiS Inc.
Developer of the Xabre value line of graphics processor units for PC video cards.
ABIT Ltd.
Manufacturer of PC graphics cards based around the NVIDIA graphic processors.
AOpen
Manufacturer of PC graphics adapaters based on the NVIDIA graphic chipsets.
ASUSTek Computer
Manufacturer of PC graphics cards based on the NVIDIA chipsets.
Gainward
Maker of a wide range of NVIDIA based graphics cards.
LeadTek Research
Manufacturer of PC graphics cards based around the NVIDIA chipsets.
MSI Inc.
Manufacturer of PC graphics adapters based on the NVIDIA graphic processors.
PNY Technologies
Manufacturer of PC and workstation graphics cards based on the NVIDIA chipsets.
Sapphire Technologies
Manufacturer of PC graphics cards based around the ATI graphic processors.

 

 

The Effects
VFB2 is designed to be a creative program that is fun to use. It’s supposed be fun to play around and lends itself to experimentation. It’s flexible enough to create an infinite range of effects.  While we made the program, we're by no means experts in what VFB2 is capable of doing. The preset sequences bundled with the program are the results of our experimentation with VFB2. They do not represent the limits of its power.

 

The Demo Version
The version of VFB2 you are currently using is a limited demo designed to illustrate what the program can do.  You can’t export AVI files from the demo, or save screen shots.

 

When you purchase VFB2, you’ll be given a download location to the full version. The full version removes the AVI and Screenshot restriction and contains vastly more content than the demo version. What do we mean by content? Basically the full version of VFB contains more sequences, more textures, more models and more images. More of everything basically!

You can buy VFB2 for just $29.95 at http://www.jellypie.co.uk