AFter Effects - best to set size in composition or is it same to resize in render que

Discussion in 'Digital Video' started by rawdawg, Mar 14, 2010.

  1. rawdawg macrumors 6502

    Jan 7, 2009
    Someone over at creativecow told me it's best to set the ouput resolution for a sequence correctly in the composition when you first create it (before importing) and that it is better than selecting output resolution in the render que. His explaination was it will take better advantage of AE's resizing algorithms.

    I'm having a hard time finding evidence to support this. Of course it's best to have settings correct from the start but in my case I want multiple sized outputs (1620x1080, sidebared 1920x1080 & 1270x720). So would that mean for optimum quality I need to do all my work 3 separate times with 3 separate compositions?
  2. rawdawg thread starter macrumors 6502

    Jan 7, 2009
    I've been searching the manual for more information regarding rendering at different resolutions from the composition settings. At first it reads on page 203 of "Using Adobe After Effects CS4":

    When you render a composition for final output, you can use the current Resolution settings for the composition or set a resolution value in the Render Settings dialog box that overrides the composition settings."

    ...which would really make one think it doesn't matter what your composition settings are as far as H&V.... then on page 689 it reads:

    By default, the render settings for a render item are based on the current project settings, composition settings, and switch settings for the composition on which the render item is based. However, you can modify the render settings for each render item to override some of these settings.

    ...which really makes me feel it would be okay to stay with maximum resolution settings of source material... But then on the next page describing possible render settings it reads:

    Resolution= Resolution of the rendered composition, relative to the original composition dimensions. Note: If you render at reduced resolution, set the Quality option to Draft. Rendering at Best quality when reducing resolution produces an unclear image and takes longer than Draft quality.!

    Why would the manual contradict itself like that. Not that it's a complete contradiction but it really makes one believe render settings override composition settings in so far as H&V resolution.

    So is it definitive that for best quality you need composition settings to match intended output resolution!? This would be a pain in a situation where you need different H&V dimensions (i.e. 1920x1080 and 1280x720[/b])
  3. timdeleware macrumors newbie

    Jul 13, 2004
    Detroit, MI

    Why not prepare your original composition; at the largest res,
    and nest it in additional resolution comps for render? They should all
    auto-update with any changes to your original composition,
    and will also allow you to manually check framing and adjust any discrepancies pre-render.
  4. ToddKopriva macrumors newbie


    Mar 15, 2010
    You're confusing resolution with the dimensions of the image/frame.

    Yes, you should create your composition at the largest frame size that you will be outputting. Then you can resize downward and crop as necessary for your smaller output sizes in the output module settings. See "Planning your work".

    The word 'resolution' doesn't refer to the number of pixels tall and wide an image is. In After Effects, it refers to whether you're viewing every pixel, every other pixel, every fourth pixel, et cetera. See "Resolution".

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