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Add GUI to Blender Player
Open, Confirmed, LowPublic


Blender includes a powerful and fast animation frame player. It can read a vast number of file types, and has powerful features for changing frame rates, loop settings and scaling. It's much faster for playback of frames than most other players, including QuickTime and DJV that both need to cache data before playback.

The Issue
The problem is that all the powerful features are completely hidden from the user. Everything is controlled via hotkeys. User can use 1-9 keys to set frame rates, P key to set it to Ping Pong, and Plus/Minus to set the scale.

Not only is it hard or impossible to discover, it's hard to find documentation. On top of that, it's impossible to see what the current setting is. If you hit P for Pong Pong, you can't see what you've set it to.

Proposed solution

Add GUI to the Blender Animation Player.

  • Insert visual controls for Play/Pause, Current Frame, Size, Loop, FPS.
  • Do it in a way that's non-obtrusive and that defers for the playing animation.
  • Non-overlapping, slim design to get out of the way




Event Timeline

William Reynish (billrey) set Type to Design.
William Reynish (billrey) updated the task description. (Show Details)
William Reynish (billrey) raised the priority of this task from to Needs Triage by Developer.
Brecht Van Lommel (brecht) triaged this task as Confirmed, Low priority.Dec 10 2013, 5:02 PM

This would be a big improvement, but it's quite a lot of work. The blender player right now is a separate application and doesn't support any UI drawing.

Why reinvent the wheel? Every platform has 100s of video players. More importantly every platform has VLC, which already has a UI and can do everything the blender player can and a lot more.

I think the player could be removed while keeping the "Play" button as a convenience for whatever video player the user chooses. Blender could try to autodetect the preferred player in the first run (if prefs are empty).

@Diego Gangl (januz) Well i think the blender foundation tries to keep blender as small and as portable as possible if you are at the library trying to show off some work you don't want to install 3 different video players on the computer. All you would need is blender on a usb stick.

@derek barker (lordodin) VLC and Mplayer also have portable versions that you can put in a USB stick, and they can play almost anything.

I noticed in the latest builds that the image editor has a mini timeline when opening movie files, so maybe some of the features of the player could be integrated into the image editor when it's showing a video. Giving them a ui would be easier.

i dont think they can play image sequences

MPlayer can. VLC can make an image playlist but it doesn't show in realtime (it's more like a slideshow).

@Diego Gangl (januz)
Mplayer can play image sequence but not always in realtime, I doubt that it can read .exr sequences too.
Media players and image sequences players shipped in softwares like maya or nuke are two differents things with differents purpose. They allow to cache in RAM images sequences impossible to read in realtime and you can see animation frame by frame at least.

One of the feature that I like in blender player is also that it can show the filename of the image sequence, that could go into a button somewhere. If there wasn't the UI issue mentioned by brecht, at least we can set another player in the preferences like DJV so it's already good as it is IMO.