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Cardiff Camera Club

An Audio-Visual (AV) sequence is a set of still images combined with a soundtrack.

In its simplest form, the screen images change at regular intervals while a piece of music plays. However, more complex AVs may have several music tracks, overlain with spoken commentary, and may contain video clips in addition to still images.

Software

There are a number of ways of creating an AV. It is possible to put together a simple sequence using PowerPoint, or Windows Movie Maker is a free download from Microsoft. There is also a create slideshow facility built in to Photoshop Elements from version 8 onwards.

The 2 most widely used Window packages amongst AV enthusiasts are PicturesToExe (PTE) from www.wnsoft.com  and ProShow Gold from www.photodex.com. Both offer a free trial period. Mac users can get the same effect with iMovie although some judges seem not to prefer this. 

Having seen an article in a recent PAGB newsletter regarding AV production I asked Howard Gregory, the author, for permission to reproduce it which was given (You can download it here  – Producing Audio-Visual Sequences).

I also asked his advice on software.His reply is below.

As regards software, everyone I know in “mainstream” A-V uses PTE.   It is, I believe, the cheapest, and probably the best in that it doesn’t (like some of the alternatives) make huge demands on computer power.   So PTE-produced sequences tend to run smoothly on anything.   Sequences produced by some of the other software can be temperamental when played on equipment other than that on which they were made.

 The latest versions of PTE have some rudimentary picture-manipulation features and some rudimentary audio manipulation features built in.   The operative word there is “rudimentary” – I would feel that I had my hand tied behind my back if I tried to use just them – but it can get people started if they don’t have access to Photoshop or Audition.

We had a talk on ‘Getting Started in AV’ from David Harris – a Past-president of the club, who has produced a tip sheet which is attached here. Starting out in Audio Visual

If you want more advice, please speak to me in the clubroom.

Dave Russell

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