PowerPoint 2007: Audio and Video in Depth
Illustration by Richard Downs

Improving playback performance


From:

PowerPoint 2007: Audio and Video in Depth

with Alicia Katz Pollock

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Video: Improving playback performance

Some PowerPoint videos may not play back smoothly. They may be jerky, experience delays, or the sound doesn't sync. This can be caused by a variety of factors around your own particular computer hardware and software setup. There are a number of techniques you can try if you find your media clips don't play well. The biggest culprit may be your computer itself. If your computer is more than a few years old, it wasn't designed to manage video files and animation well, since multimedia has only recently become popular.
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  1. 1m 39s
    1. Welcome
      52s
    2. Using the exercise files
      47s
  2. 16m 43s
    1. Using video and audio appropriately
      1m 49s
    2. Considering copyrights
      3m 54s
    3. Linking vs. embedding media
      6m 28s
    4. Working with video formats
      4m 32s
  3. 15m 41s
    1. Inserting an animated GIF from the clip art gallery
      4m 32s
    2. Inserting a video from a computer file
      3m 20s
    3. Inserting a clip as an external object
      2m 36s
    4. Inserting a video as a Windows Media Player control
      3m 20s
    5. Playing a video using an action button
      1m 53s
  4. 23m 38s
    1. Linking to a YouTube video
      5m 8s
    2. Playing a QuickTime movie
      4m 32s
    3. Playing a Flash animation
      3m 40s
    4. Using ActiveX as a workaround
      4m 42s
    5. Inserting a web page
      5m 36s
  5. 23m 7s
    1. Resizing a video
      3m 59s
    2. Cropping a video
      2m 51s
    3. Applying preset video styles
      3m 22s
    4. Designing a border
      4m 35s
    5. Adding shadows
      3m 25s
    6. Adding reflections
      1m 9s
    7. Adding glow effects
      1m 18s
    8. Using Format Painter
      2m 28s
  6. 26m 32s
    1. Setting the volume
      2m 22s
    2. Playing a clip automatically
      2m 49s
    3. Playing full screen
      1m 55s
    4. Hiding a video
      2m 11s
    5. Looping a video
      2m 55s
    6. Rewinding after playing
      1m 27s
    7. Playing a movie across slides
      3m 48s
    8. Delaying playback of a video
      2m 0s
    9. Triggering a video by clicking a graphic
      3m 46s
    10. Triggering a video using animations
      3m 19s
  7. 14m 4s
    1. Troubleshooting videos that won't play
      3m 10s
    2. Improving playback performance
      4m 55s
    3. Optimizing Windows 7 settings
      5m 59s
  8. 19m 26s
    1. Working with audio file formats
      2m 52s
    2. Embedding sounds
      3m 38s
    3. Inserting sounds from the clip art gallery
      4m 39s
    4. Inserting audio from a computer file
      2m 11s
    5. Playing a sound using an action button
      2m 46s
    6. Recording your own sounds
      3m 20s
  9. 18m 50s
    1. Setting the volume
      2m 44s
    2. Playing audio automatically
      2m 50s
    3. Choosing a sound's starting and ending points
      2m 36s
    4. Looping an audio clip
      3m 9s
    5. Delaying an audio clip
      1m 45s
    6. Changing the appearance of the sound icon
      3m 10s
    7. Hiding the sound icon
      2m 36s
  10. 12m 22s
    1. Adding sound effects to transitions
      3m 5s
    2. Adding sound effects to animations
      4m 13s
    3. Triggering audio playback with objects
      3m 35s
    4. Playing a sound with a hyperlink
      1m 29s
  11. 23m 0s
    1. Playing a sound across multiple slides
      4m 13s
    2. Building a music soundtrack
      4m 21s
    3. Playing audio tracks from a CD
      2m 33s
    4. Recording a narration
      11m 53s
  12. 16m 43s
    1. Running the Compatibility Checker
      1m 36s
    2. Converting files for PowerPoint 2010
      2m 26s
    3. Packaging a CD for travel
      3m 40s
    4. Creating a self-running presentation
      6m 54s
    5. Extracting media files
      2m 7s
  13. 39s
    1. Goodbye
      39s

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Watch the Online Video Course PowerPoint 2007: Audio and Video in Depth
3h 32m Intermediate Sep 27, 2011

Viewers: in countries Watching now:

Discover how to integrate and enhance video and audio to create a more engaging PowerPoint presentation. In this course, author Alicia Katz Pollock emphasizes the technical details necessary to make a multimedia presentation work: from working with appropriate file formats, to applying video styles, to reducing the file size of multimedia presentations for sharing.

Topics include:
  • Using video and audio appropriately
  • Linking vs. embedding media
  • Considering copyrights
  • Inserting video
  • Working with proprietary formats, such as QuickTime, YouTube, and Flash
  • Applying effects
  • Setting options like looping and full-screen playback
  • Adding sound
  • Building a music soundtrack
  • Saving multimedia presentations
Subject:
Business
Software:
Office PowerPoint
Author:
Alicia Katz Pollock

Improving playback performance

Some PowerPoint videos may not play back smoothly. They may be jerky, experience delays, or the sound doesn't sync. This can be caused by a variety of factors around your own particular computer hardware and software setup. There are a number of techniques you can try if you find your media clips don't play well. The biggest culprit may be your computer itself. If your computer is more than a few years old, it wasn't designed to manage video files and animation well, since multimedia has only recently become popular.

Video playback is very processor-intensive. PowerPoint 2007 is designed to work with DirectX-compatible video cards that support Microsoft Direct 3D technology. If you have an older machine, your graphics card may not be powerful enough. If the issue is your graphics card, first make sure its software drivers are up to date. If you suspect your hardware is just too old, it might be time to consider a more powerful computer. It's also possible you don't have enough RAM. RAM is the short-term memory that determines how fast your computer thinks and how many operations it can perform simultaneously.

If you find that your videos are consistently choppy or the audio doesn't sync, take your computer to a store for this inexpensive fix. After adding more RAM, you'll also find that the rest of your workload on your computer will go much more smoothly. Try exiting all your other open programs, so that PowerPoint is the only one running. Also, make sure you're not running out of free disk space. If you're down to under 1 GB of hard drive space, you'll definitely see a reduction in performance. PowerPoint and other programs use free disk space to manage their own memory.

Here are a few other techniques you can try, but please note that performing the steps below may or may not help, depending on your specific slide show and computer. First, make sure your hardware acceleration is turned on. To do this, go to the Slide Show tab and then click on the Set Up Slide Show button. At the bottom of the dialog box that appears, look for Performance. Put a check box in front of Use hardware graphics acceleration. Under that setting is Slide show resolution. Click on the dropdown arrow.

Try using a smaller dimension, down to 640x480, which is fastest, but low fidelity. This will make the slide show very small and possibly grainy, but it should smooth out your playback. The only problem with changing this setting that it may distort your videos; if that's the case, go back to Use Current Resolution. Go ahead and close this box and go back to the Slide Show Ribbon. Note that this Resolution setting is also available right on the Ribbon.

Another step you can take is to run the entire presentation from start to finish, even if the playback is glitchy. Then play the whole thing again and see if there's any improvement. The first time you play the slide show the system will cache some of the data, and the second time, PowerPoint will read from the cache instead of from the hard disk. Spread out your more complex slides so they're not grouped together. Insert text slides between your memory-intensive multimedia slides. If you're running the slide show off of a CD or DVD, try moving the files to the computer's hard drive and playing it right from the computer.

This will skip the intermediate step of accessing the CD drive while your slide show plays. Compress your images to save file size and processor requirements. You may also choose to export your slide show as its own movie file, if you're not going to be presenting it live. As a single self-running file, it won't be beholden to the same glitches as a live PowerPoint presentation. You may want to limit or remove special effects and formatting applied to your videos, such as shadows, reflections, and glows. These effects all use your computer's processing power to apply and maintain.

Along the same lines, reduce the number of by-letter and by-word animations. By-letter and by-word animations apply an effect that brings text onto the slide one letter, or one word, at a time. Instead, use one of these animations only for the title of a slide, instead of for every single bullet point. Avoid animations that include fading, rotating, or scaling. Try replacing these effects with other more simple animations. Don't use large color gradients, where your colors gradually progress from one color to another color, or transparent objects.

Instead, choose solid-color fills. Reduce the physical size of animated pictures and animated text. Also, reduce the number of simultaneous animations. Run them one after the other, instead. Last, you may want to edit the original media clips themselves in the software you used to make them to save a version of the file with fewer frames per second. This will create a smaller file size, more manageable by your computer. Because multimedia PowerPoint slideshows can be so memory-intensive, any one of these solutions may be just the thing you need to ensure your presentation runs as smoothly as possible in front of a live audience.

There are currently no FAQs about PowerPoint 2007: Audio and Video in Depth.

 
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