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Output Properties > Dimensions panel split
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Authored by William Reynish (billreynish) on Mar 3 2019, 2:45 PM.

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Summary

I remember when we originally decided on the Dimensions panel, one of the reasons we combined time and image size properties in the same panel, was simply because the 2.49 and previous UIs used fixed-size panels, so we often put two categories of properties inside a panel, using two columns.

Now that we no longer do this, we could clarify and simplify some panels by splitting them, such as the Output > Dimensions panel

Pros:

  • Clearer split between the time vs image size properties
  • More balanced number of panels in Output Properties
  • For stills projects, users can ignore or close the Time panel

Cons:

  • The presets affect properties in both

Diff Detail

Event Timeline

If it were not for the presets issue, I definitely think this is a clean improvement, but as it stands I'm also ok to leave it as-is.

just an opinion of an nostalgic man.
I miss the compactness of the old panels very much,
Probably they were not perfect, they could be improved,
but all this waste of space in the new panels, I can not make it fit for good.

And for only one valid reason, when I work for hours on a project, I do not want to move my eyes up and down to research the various functions I need, I would prefer everything more compact, the available space well exploited, in order to optimize the speed of access to what I need ...

Attention, I am also a minimalist who tends to Zen, and loves a certain order ... but I would prefer that the tools are more contextual and predictive than splitted and distanced in a chain of panels.

this is all from me.

@noki paike (amonpaike): Please don’t add off-topic comments inside these tasks.

Looks good! As long as both Time and Image Size are open by default it's okay.

Kind of offtopic: What do you think of making the rarely used Crop only show if Border is enabled. I know we only do that for enums usually but it's so rarely used and taking up precious vertical space it just makes noise.

Total offtopic: Hey @Harley Acheson (harley) ! (can't find you on IRC or blender.chat) In the screenshot there's a nice example where we could use your love for pixel-perfectness :D

This revision is now accepted and ready to land.Mar 4 2019, 2:24 PM
Brecht Van Lommel (brecht) added inline comments.
release/scripts/startup/bl_ui/properties_output.py
58

I would be inclined to call this Render Size, though I'm not entirely sure. Just makes it a bit more clear that the settings in this output tab apply to rendering.

160

Time could be left out of this label.

+1 from me!
For people who mostly render stills this would be an improvement. I could move the Time Panel to the very bottom, making output panels cleaner for me.

Own idea for improvement:

Don't know why this didn't occur to me, but we could also make the Image Size and Time panels sub-panels of the Dimensions panel. This way we can have the presets be on the top level and still keep the sub-panels separate

Here's the version using sub-panels instead:

The presets then correctly display in the parent header.

Ok to go with this?

I'm not sure, this just adds more space taken by UI organization elements? Sure, this is just my personal preference, and animators might disagree, but I don't see myself delibarately closing the Render Size Panel and only leaving Time open.

Personally I also prefer without the subpanels, but don't care strongly either way.

I still feel a little conflicted on this myself, because if the presets problem. Setting the Image Size preset will also alter the frame rate, which I guess you wouldn't expect.

Do any of you feel this is an issue?

I'd rather go with separate panels. Like Sebastian mentioned it takes space while not adding much, and since we already have room I don't see an issue with having separate panels, we only have 5 top-level panels at the moment.

To recap:

  • "Render Size" panel, first on top.
  • "Time" panel second, with "Remapping" panel inside.

@Pablo Vazquez (pablovazquez) If it wasn't clear, the reason for the sub-panels, was to solve the problem with the presets. Changing the presets affect properties inside both Image Size and Time panels.

Maybe we can just accept this inconsistency, but this aspect is not great. With the sub-panels solution, it is clear that the presets affect both panels.

Agree with your name suggestions.

release/scripts/startup/bl_ui/properties_output.py
58

I see what you are getting at, but not so keen on 'Render Size'. I mean, 'render' is now also what you see in the viewport :)

I guess this could also be Output Size, or Output Format

@Pablo Vazquez (pablovazquez) If it wasn't clear, the reason for the sub-panels, was to solve the problem with the presets.

Sorry didn't see your last message, we wrote the answer at the same time :D

Can't we just split the presets into two? I'd rather not have preset buttons from one panel affect other panels. I already don't trust them because they're Py files that can change anything, if we stick to always only change what is inside that panel then it's okay.

With this in mind then people still using PAL/NTSC would have to pick presets in both panels, however with digital TV the use of those is less everyday anyway.

Another idea:

We could rename 'Image Size' to 'Format' and include Frame Rate. Then it's clear that frame rate is affected by the preset.

I would then rename 'Time' to 'Frame Range'

Many apps essentially do something similar. The frame rate is part of the format, and the frame range is something different.

Another idea:

We could rename 'Image Size' to 'Format' and include Frame Rate. Then it's clear that frame rate is affected by the preset.

I would then rename 'Time' to 'Frame Range'

Many apps essentially do something similar. The frame rate is part of the format, and the frame range is something different.

Not sure, 'Format' is a bit broad, since it's related to output extension, compression and so on. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image_file_formats

Here's how the above concept looks in practice:

The Frame Range panel could then probably be closed by default, because you can already set this in the Timeline anyway.

Btw, maybe Remapping should really be named 'Time Stretching' ?

Another update:

Changed name to Project Format:

This makes it clear that it's not related to the file type.

Again, I would keep Frame Range closed by default and make sure the Output panel is open instead.

Personally, this is probably my favourite solution thus far.

Project Format sounds really weird. I wouldn't expect the render dimensions behind it. I would prefer Output Size.

It doesn't really make sense for frame rate to be inside Output Size.

Many video editing apps use something like Project Settings or Project Format or similar, to set the resolution and frame rate.

Project settings / format sound weird for me also, because blender projects are a very broad thing (i. e. one could expect to find units settings under such a a panel). How about something like Output Specifications or Render Specifications?