Cross Dissolve transition not behaving as expected

Hi,
I have used the Cross Dissolve transition between two clips in the editor but the result is not as I had anticipated: during the first half of the transition only the first frame of clip 2 fades in, there is no motion. Motion only sets in once the transition has reached the middle. Odd, don't you think? Or am I doing something wrong? To illustrate what I mean I have attached a screenshot with some comments.
Thanks.

Comments

  • Robin
    Robin Posts: 1,669 Enthusiast
    You have to make sure that both clips are actually overlapping for a transition to properly work with to clips moving at the same time.
  • RNick
    RNick Posts: 27
    I hope I don't sound too stupid, but I tried that and couldn't do it. They never seem to overlap - one clip always gets pushed aside (other than in Vegas...). And as far as I remember from some training video I watched you just drop a transition onto two clips sitting side by side on the timeline and that's it.
  • Robin
    Robin Posts: 1,669 Enthusiast
    Ah yes, I see the problem. Put the second clip in another track above the first one, make them overlap and then apply the dissolve to the topmost clip. That should solve the issue. This is not really intuitive in the HitFilm editor...
  • TomMc
    TomMc Posts: 112 Just Starting Out
    RNick
    You need to make sure that there is enough media in the clip to generate a dissolve - the freeze frame shows when there is no more information left in the clip.
    So, if you want a 24 frame cross dissolve you need to make sure that there are at least 12 frames motion after the out point of the first clip, and at least 12 frames of motion before the in point of the second clip. The cross dissolve will then be able smoothly fade the 2 clips together, without freezing any motion.
    Hope that helps!
  • Robin
    Robin Posts: 1,669 Enthusiast
    So, if you want a 24 frame cross dissolve you need to make sure that there are at least 12 frames motion after the out point of the first clip, and at least 12 frames of motion before the in point of the second clip. The cross dissolve will then be able smoothly fade the 2 clips together, without freezing any motion.

    Ah, so that's how it properly works ^^ But shouldn't there be 24 frames motion at the start/end of each of the two clips? With 12 frames you'll have a frozen frame of each clip for half of the transition which is 24 frames long, if I'm understanding this right.

  • RNick
    RNick Posts: 27
    You need to make sure that there is enough media in the clip to generate a dissolve - the freeze frame shows when there is no more information left in the clip.
    So, if you want a 24 frame cross dissolve you need to make sure that there are at least 12 frames motion after the out point of the first clip, and at least 12 frames of motion before the in point of the second clip. The cross dissolve will then be able smoothly fade the 2 clips together, without freezing any motion.

    Thanks, Tom but the clips are both long enough to provide sufficient information - both are about 5 seconds long. It looks more like a bug to me.

  • RNick
    RNick Posts: 27
    Put the second clip in another track above the first one, make them overlap and then apply the dissolve to the topmost clip.

    Thanks, Robin, this did the trick.

  • TomMc
    TomMc Posts: 112 Just Starting Out
    Thanks, Tom but the clips are both long enough to provide sufficient information - both are about 5 seconds long. It looks more like a bug to me.

    It's not the length of the clip, it's the length of the overlap between clips (as illustrated in Robin's stacking technique). It is the unseen media that is used to create the transition, and it only freezes when there is no more media. This is how all NLE dissolves work, and we haven't had any bugs reported and we can't replicate your issue  here.
    Robin - you only have to trim 12 frames at the end of the first clip and the beginning of the second clip because the overlap is happening 12 frames before the cut point, and 12 frames after - ie: the final 12 frames of clip 1 are overlapping with the trimmed 12 frames of clip 2, and the first 12 frames of clip 2 are overlapping with the trimmed 12 frames of clip 1. It's confusing to write, but look at it in the timeline and it makes sense!

  • RNick
    RNick Posts: 27
    Thanks again, Tom. Just to clarify I do it right: I put two clips next to each other in the editor. Then I drag and drop a transition onto both clips so that the transition covers an equal part of both clip 1 and 2. HitFilm should then create the dissolve on its own, shouldn't it?
  • TomMc
    TomMc Posts: 112 Just Starting Out
    Hey RNick
    If you just drag the whole clips onto the timeline it will go from their first frame until the last, and adding the cross dissolve will generate still frames during the transition. To get round this you can either:
    1. Single click on an item in the Project Media window. It will then show in the viewer at the top left of the screen. The blue handles left and right can be dragged to the start and end points or you can scrub over the file and use I & O keys to mark the in and out points. Now the clip can be dragged from the viewer to the timeline, only showing the frames between your In & Out, and the cross dissolve will use the 'handles' either side of these points for the transition - just make sure the handles are long enough (ie: half the duration of the cross dissolve).
    2. Drag the entire clip onto the timeline. Place the cursor at the end of the clip, click and pull towards the in point. The on screen display will show you how many frames you are trimming. For accurate trimming, zoom in on the timeline. Drop the second clip onto the timeline and drag from the front to trim the opening frames. Close the gap between items on the timeline, or use Ripple Delete. Then drop the cross dissolve on, and again the handles will be used for the transition.
    This video explains it all much better than I have here!
    http://youtu.be/PySI1i68g2Y
  • RNick
    RNick Posts: 27
    I think I got it now. Thanks for not giving up on me, Tom.
    Selecting a comp in the media list did not bring them in the trimmer window (maybe because they are made animated photos?)  so I used method 2 and it worked. I had not understood that you have to sort of sort of shorten the end of clip 1 and the start of clip 2 to make a transition work.
  • AxelWilkinson
    AxelWilkinson Posts: 5,252 Staff
    Yeah, since the second clip has to basically start at the beginning of the transition, and the first clip has to continue on until the end of the transition, there needs to be enough overlap for that to work.  If the clips are just butted together on the timeline,the transition has to start before the second clip starts, and the first frame will be duplicated to fill in the gap.
  • Robin
    Robin Posts: 1,669 Enthusiast
    Well, let me just say this is really not intuitive to do to just create a simple transition. Just dragging them over each other with a small overlap should be enough to create a basic, native fade transition, which should also be visually indicated on the timeline. Then you drag any transition onto that and it works. Vegas does a very good job in this department.
  • TomMc
    TomMc Posts: 112 Just Starting Out
    Robin - that process is pretty much how every editor I have used, including Vegas, works. If a clip doesn't have handles, then there is no information to generate a dissolve.
    Some editors shorten clips to allow for transitions, although back when I was a pro editor, I would always make sure this was turned off, as there was too much potential for durations to be pulled out of whack, and if you have to hit a certain length (ie: a 30 second TV commercial) this was a cardinal sin!
    I think the difference may be a perceptual one - in a tradition NLE the most common workflow is to use the trim window, mark In & Out then drag to the timeline (normally leaving media handles). Whereas in a compositor whole media clips are placed in comps or timelines, often without handles. It may be because HitFilm is doing both jobs it seems like it is behaving differently, but in reality, the same steps can be followed.
  • Robin
    Robin Posts: 1,669 Enthusiast
    I know the functionality is basically the same, but how you do it not quite.
    In Vegas, if you drag two clips so that they overlap on the timeline, it automatically creates a fade (or cross dissolve) transition between them:
    Vegas.jpg
    The transition is clearly indicated, you can see its length and exactly where both clips start and end.
    If you do the same in HitFilm, it just trims the first clip to only last until the start of the second clip - which, coming from vegas, goes against what I'd expect:
    HitFilm.jpg
    To create the same transition like I do in Vegas by just overlapping the clips, I have to place both clips in HitFilm, trim their start and end so that there is enough material left in the trimmed areas to allow for the transition, place them behind each other again, and finally drop the cross dissolve on them. For me, this is way to much work to just create a simple fading from one video to another, which is why I stick to Vegas and have never really used HitFilm for editing.
    For me as a user, it Vegas and HitFilm seem to have (even if it's not the case) different approaches to transitions: In Vegas, a transition is something that automatically appears when two clips overlap and its length, start and end points are purely affected by the position, start and end points of the overlapping clips, and the type and other parameters can be changed afterwards by dropping different transitions on the existing one.
    In HitFilm, a transition has to be explicitly created by the user, and it's length also is not managed by the length or position of the clips, but has to be manually set by me. The transition is something that has no direct relation to the two clips it should be working with.
    Of course for the internal working of the software this might not be a big difference, but it is a huge one on the user's side. Vegas is really really intuitive here, whereas HitFilm feels very complicated and slow.
    Well maybe I'm just missing something and adding transitions in HitFilm is actually far easier than the way I'm doing it, then of course fill me in  :D 
  • Ambiroa
    Ambiroa Posts: 180 Just Starting Out
    @Robin
    I completely understand you, what you are used to and your logic in this matter. My guess is that you are layer-person, someone that thinks in layers.
    Although HF is layer-based, - and I am still interested in buying this, don't worry -, I discovered that I am actually a nodes-person.
    I am actually happy the way I have to do to create transitions because like in nodes, I like to have different options without the need for unnecessary instances of my footage, and by simply clicking them on and off. So for example, when I have footage A to start with and want to have it transition in footage B1, B2, C or D, I can simply put the transition at the end of A, and then click on the eye of the others (on their own tracks) to quickly see which one I like best.
    If I would do this in Vegas, I would either need 4 instances of A plus the fx on each (A+B1, A+B2, etc), or I need to move the clips to the A track to see the transition.