QuartzCrystal render bug

cradle's picture

When I try and render any composition on my MacBook Pro, Quartz Crystal (Demo Version, latest, 1.4) gives me an error, the error in the GUI is ...

"Failed to create offscreen renderer" (also see pic attached)

I get this error on launching Quartz Crystal in the console (if that helps)

Sep 29 07:27:45 tbook QuartzCrystal[5069]: *** Message from <QCPatch = 0x13BB28A0 "(null)">:\nCannot create connection from ["outputQueue" @ "Queue_1"] to ["_enable" @ "Iterator_1"]
Sep 29 07:27:45 tbook QuartzCrystal[5069]: *** State restoration failed on <QCPatch = 0x13BB28A0 "(null)">

But no other errors in the console on render or on close.

Do you see this as a bug that is fixable? Is there a bug ticketing system or some such I should submit this to?

Sorry if this is in the wrong place to post bug reports. I'd really like to support Kineme.net and Quartz Composer and was trying to see if rendering with Quartz Crystal was able to do what I wanted to do before I bought it.

Are the any steps I can take to get more information on the error? Does the app write any logs anywhere other than the console?

Also, while I'm here, I'm extremely interested in "switching fullscreen" support in applications made with Quartz Builder, has anyone contemplated such a feature? I've implemented it myself in an XCode project, but I haven't integrated it into an process as streamlined as Quartz Builder, and was wondering how I would go about contributing...

  • Glenn
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Screen shot 2010-09-29 at 7.32.53 AM.png
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cybero's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

cradle, hi.

This quite likely isn't actually a bug report for Quartz Crystal. I usually get a failure to render if I haven't properly associiated file path loaded assets or have pipelined the graphic throughflow in the composition in an inefficient way. That said, our mileage may well vary.

Looking at the information from your Console Log, it looks rather as if you have the QC equivalent of a loose connection. It could be that you need an Input Splitter set to being a structure in the Settings panel between your Queue and whatever you are pumping the resulting Queue into. Bit difficult without the composition to look at though. It could also be that you are trying to use the queue output as some kind of enabling trigger upon your Iterator patch. It won't really work like that at all.

Regarding fullscreen switching, sounds interesting.

Anyway, take a close look at what your Queue output is going out to is probably what you need to do.

gtoledo3's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

I'm kind of thinking that error Console associated with QCrystal is from a qtz that is part of the resources, but that doesn't really have any real effect. I think that this only shows in SL.

The reasons for offscreen render failing are covered by Cybero. Also, high levels of AA can cause offscreen render failure.

If you submit the composition, I'm sure I or someone else would be happy to give a go rendering some with a fully registered version, or maybe you could write info@kineme.net and see if someone can help you out in that department.

Also, there is perhaps an aspect of it where seeing the composition might clear up some kind of thing that needs to be modified for offline render, or maybe some plugin that may not give expected results when rendered offline (none come to mind at the moment).

If you use QuartzBuilder, there is support for controlling window size and window x/y onscreen while the app is running, if you build your composition on top of the supported template. So, it is possible to have apps go fullscreen and back, have windows follow multitouch or mouse, or have several settings. Notice the input parameters on Window Output macro on the attached pdf.

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QuartzBuilder Template.pdf26.74 KB

cradle's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

I'll definitely be looking into my rendering pipeline and 'structure' queues... thanks for pointers.

But where, prey tell, might one find the QuartzBuilder template app?

It'd be awfully convenient for such a thing to exist on the download page for the Quartz Builder application hint wink nudge hehe... my GoogleFu fails me at finding the beast :'(

As yet another aside... is it possible to change my username? Or would that be overly convoluted and databasey account trickeyness voodoo that is not worth poking :\

On that note... who here is with Kineme? Are you with Kineme George Toledo? (by the way I like your work, thanks for publishing so much of it)

gtoledo3's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

cradle wrote:
But where, prey tell, might one find the QuartzBuilder template app?

It should be located at Developer/Library/Quartz Composer/Templates/QuartzBuilder.qtz if you've installed Quartz Builder.

cradle wrote:

It'd be awfully convenient for such a thing to exist on the download page for the Quartz Builder application hint wink nudge hehe... my GoogleFu fails me at finding the beast :'(

I don't disagree, but there is a history. In Leopard, Quartz Composer starts with a template page that Quartz Builder altered to display an option for loading a composition of the Quartz Builder protocol at startup. That made it very obvious, in a way. Leopard allowed for this because of the way the startup template picker was "dynamic" and allowed one to load in extra protocol types and have them be included in the startup page.

When SL came about, Apple changed the schema, which no longer allowed the protocol to load at startup. I know there were some ideas thrown around to make it more obvious, but as you state, documentation would be nice.

cradle wrote:

As yet another aside... is it possible to change my username? Or would that be overly convoluted and databasey account trickeyness voodoo that is not worth poking :\

I know at least one person has had a name change... I would write info@kineme.net for those requests, or maybe someone that does that here will see this ;-)

cradle wrote:

On that note... who here is with Kineme? Are you with Kineme George Toledo? (by the way I like your work, thanks for publishing so much of it)

http://kosada.com/Custom-Software/Quartz-Composer/Kineme

Kineme is a project of Kosada. I don't work for Kosada but have had/continue to have, the pleasure of working/collaborating with Steve Mokris (Kosada & Kineme) and Chris Wright (Kosada/Kineme Emeritus/now Apple) on projects, Kineme related and otherwise.

cradle's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

Here we go...

http://www.cybero.co.uk/QuartzComposer/examples/quartzbuildertutorial.html

That content, or at least a link to it may be handy from the download page for QuartzBuilder...

AAaaaandd.... the template, after google and directory scouring, although not selectable in SnowLeopard, is still installed (open /Developer/Library/Quartz\ Composer/Templates/QuartzBuilder.qtz) although it might be handy for future users to make a note for 10.6 users on the download page that that step is manual :) (I tried to update the wiki, but there isn't a QuartzBuilder page and/or I couldn't access it)

cradle's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

Thankyou very much for your help and replies :)

gtoledo3's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

After scouring? I gave the directory location in the post above ;)

I haven't really looked at the info at the cybero link.

There is/ was a support thread here at the forum that featured some templates by members and bug testing discussion. I thought there was an official explanation of what to do here somewhere though.

mbira's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

Hi, I just wanted to say this for others that may come to this page from a google search of the error message.

I just got the same "failed to create offscreen" error from the demo version of Quartz Crystal. I was demoing it and if it worked, I was going to buy it.

I then read this thread and thought there must be a problem with my composition.

However, I then found this free renderer: http://code.google.com/p/qtzrendang/

That worked great and did the job correctly for free.

cybero's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

Interesting that Crystal should fail you whilst qtzrendang does you a good render.

The point I made regarding the need sometimes to make sure one's composition was clean and neat, especially in regards of published ports and file paths is pertinent up to a point, but doesn't necessarily explain all reports of failure in to render in Crystal.

One good thing about your post, it has swung this thread back to what initially prompted its creation. A problem with rendering in Quartz Crystal.

qtzrendang gives one no options over the codec employed within the .mov wrapper, although size, fps, duration and top level ports [parameters] are available.

Almost invariably I have found that if I run a Crystal offending composition in Composer, it may well render, but if run in a debug mode it begins to reveal the imperfections in the composition that Quartz Crystal tries to correctly calculate for,nonetheless, each and every frame at whatever frame rate has been set.

Composer can vary its fps so it kind of ducks some issues of 'fidelity' that Crystal doesn't dodge, but comes a cropper with those requirements is my rough and ready thumbnail of the situation.

I'm still waiting to finish rendering from a composition that rendered nicely enough in Quartz Crystal, just for comparison's sake.

/////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Results of the qtzrendang offline render are a file that is .mp4 video, little endian audio that plays OK in QuickTime Player 7 but the audio doesn't load in QuickTime Player 10.1. The render isn't as good a quality render as produced by Quartz Crystal IMHO, but I can see well how compositions that are somewhat less demanding of the Quartz Composer framework would render very nicely with qtzrendang from pushing through some of the Developer Graphic Animations.

Nice touch getting the render queue to concurrently incorporate and sync to the audio file that is being visualized, though.

The source code is posted on Google, BTW, so reworking it to render to H.264 and AAC would be a nice way to get some HD audio video work flows with Quartz Composer.

mbira's picture
Re: QuartzCrystal render bug

Yeah, I am definitely not a pro at quartz composer, and I'm very sure there are holes all over the place on my comp that could be made better. I rendered the video then dropped it into Premiere and added audio, so I can't talk at all about the quality of audio (or anything else) with the above free renderer. I was happy with the quality. That was the first time I needed to render anything outside of just using the comp in vdmx.