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Topic:
Very Slow Button response with my template
This thread has 12 replies. Displaying all posts.
Post 1 made on Wednesday January 10, 2007 at 02:50
frockc
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I credited my own template with a combination of a bunch of buttons and i don't know why on some screens like the keypad screen they button is pressed then like 3 or 4 seconds later it responds...

If it is a png problem then how can i switch the pngs to something else so it is not as
bad... thank you..

I read the earlier post about alot of pngs but i got rid of alot of them and it still is very slow any help would be appreciated u can email me at frockc@hotmail.com...

Also what is a good program u guys use to design backgrounds and lay outs...

I can email my template to anyone if they could look at it for me thanks...

Last edited by frockc on January 10, 2007 03:58.
Post 2 made on Wednesday January 10, 2007 at 03:15
Control Remotes
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I use Photoshop and optomize all images for the web. It minmizes file size, while maintaining good image quality. I think KC also uses Photoshop. Darnitol wrote the manual for Fireworks (if I remember correctly), so I believe he uses that. There are a few nice applications out there.



Thank you,
Damon DG
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OP | Post 3 made on Wednesday January 10, 2007 at 03:36
frockc
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what i have is a background which is a png then a few buttons like 3 that are png and 5 that are gif then i have like a keypad that pops up on that page with a gif background for the keypad and a bunch of gif buttons on the keypad would that cause the slowdown in key respone?...

and how would i go about converting the background from png and buttons to something like a gif or bmp without changing itz appearnce... also there is transparent backgrounds that i tried changing with ms paint and there where not the same... thanks

Last edited by frockc on January 10, 2007 03:42.
Post 4 made on Wednesday January 10, 2007 at 14:46
KCThirstyEar
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In my experience, PNG Backgrounds tend to slow stuff down. I'd use Photoshop (specifically Imageready) as Damon suggested and convert them to BMP, or optimize them.
KC
Audio Artisans
Post 5 made on Wednesday January 10, 2007 at 21:15
cbond
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On January 10, 2007 at 03:15, Control Remotes said...
I use Photoshop and optomize all images for the web.
It minmizes file size, while maintaining good image quality.
I think KC also uses Photoshop. Darnitol wrote the manual
for Fireworks (if I remember correctly), so I believe
he uses that. There are a few nice applications out there.

Could you give us the version of Photoshop you use? Photoshop comes in so many flavors from Elements to CS2/3 that I'm not sure which products are too slim and which are overkill. (I have a version that came with a camera which does little more than manage photo libraries!)

Thanks...
I love the sound of bagpipes when I'm mourning.
Post 6 made on Thursday January 11, 2007 at 06:27
blakrj
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225
On January 10, 2007 at 03:36, frockc said...
what i have is a background which is a png then a few
buttons like 3 that are png and 5 that are gif then i
have like a keypad that pops up on that page with a gif
background for the keypad and a bunch of gif buttons on
the keypad would that cause the slowdown in key respone?...

and how would i go about converting the background from
png and buttons to something like a gif or bmp without
changing itz appearnce... also there is transparent backgrounds
that i tried changing with ms paint and there where not
the same... thanks

send me the file and I'll try it out on my remote. I can also take a look at converting the PNG files to BMP's for you. Have a number of tools at my disposal to check this out if you want.
Post 7 made on Thursday January 11, 2007 at 10:05
Darnitol
Universal Remote Control Inc.
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BMP backgrounds provide the best performance, but their file size is much larger. And of course, they do not support transparency.

I use JPG for most of my backgrounds to keep file sizes smaller, but there is a very small hit in button performance IF the buttons are use transparent PNGs for their graphics. If there's no transparency in the button (ie: 24-bit graphics instead of 32-bit graphics), the button performance won't be affected, even if you use PNG.

Thanks,
Dale
I'm a member of the Remote Central community, just like you! My comments here are my own, and in no way express the opinions, policies, or plans of Universal Remote Control, Inc.
OP | Post 8 made on Friday January 12, 2007 at 12:23
frockc
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well i optimized all the png background and background transperceny i have one laying on top of the other on alot of my pages... it still seems to run very slow so maybe i'll convert all the solid backgrounds to jpeg or bitmap... does the size of ur overall template matter cause mine is very small with just two devices right now...
Post 9 made on Friday January 12, 2007 at 16:52
Darnitol
Universal Remote Control Inc.
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The size of the templae doesn't really matter. The issue is multiple layers of transparency. If you're using PNGs as backgrounds, all it takes is one pixel to use one bit of 256 levels of alpha channel, and the whole image is now considered to be a transparent image. So even if another PNG graphic does not overlay the transparent part of the background, if it overlays any part of that background, it counts as two layers of transparency. And the bigger the images containing the transparency, the slower the button response will be.

Example: A PNG background has a tiny transparent area in the upper left. On top of that you place a small transparent button in the lower right. That button will be very slow. However, if you chop the background into four "slices" and only have transparency in the slice at the upper left, then the very same small button from before will have good performance, because now it's not on top of a transparent background.
I'm a member of the Remote Central community, just like you! My comments here are my own, and in no way express the opinions, policies, or plans of Universal Remote Control, Inc.
Post 10 made on Saturday January 13, 2007 at 05:58
Audiophiliac
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3,316
I just did an MX3000 with their Alpha template. I replaced the default backgrounds with some .jpg files I made, and it was slow too. I didnt try the ALpha default template to see if it had the problem.

I wish they would add memory or a faster processor because you can make them look awesome, but if they dont work well, whats the point?

Why would URC create a template with .JPG backgrounds, .PNG backgrounds on top of those, and .PNG buttons if the hardware cant handle it?

Or am I doing something wrong? I guess I should test the default config and see how it behaves.....
"When I eat, it is the food that is scared." - Ron Swanson
Post 11 made on Saturday January 13, 2007 at 11:24
Darnitol
Universal Remote Control Inc.
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In short, the Alpha 2.1 template should solve this problem, unless there's some new issue I am not currently aware of. But here's the long explanation:

I designed the original Alpha template using an earlier version of MX-Editor. That version of the editor allowed for the fastest possible button response time, but it did so in a manner that made file sizes larger in the remote's memory than they were on disk. Needless to say, this complicated the lives of many installers.

The most recent MX-Editor corrects the file size issue and keeps most of the speed of the earlier implementation, but because of how it handles this change, files that were optimized for speed under the older scheme sometimes run very slowly in the new scheme. That's what happened with versions 1 and 2 of the Alpha template.

Alpha 2.1 solves this problem by splitting the transparent PNG layer into a group of very small buttons, instead of one large 320x240 button. As a result, the active buttons do not overlap each other, and they do not overlap the large 320x240 transparency that was used in earlier versions of the Alpha template. The visual effect is almost identical, but the hit on the processor is orders of magnitude lower.

So, if you use the Alpha 2.1 template or later, you shouldn't see these slow button speeds. I use it at home every day, and my remote is quite zippy. (By zippy, I mean that all buttons respond in fractions of a second.) I didn't use any special optimizations beyond the 2.1 Alpha itself. In fact, I greatly complicated the template by making every background have an "After" state, and then I have a button on my Main page that sets the variable to switch states of all the backgrounds. That allows me to have two entirely different visual themes in one remote, and I can switch any time I want. At the same time, I'm tracking a large number of variables in my template, which can also slow down button processing time. Even with these significant changes, my buttons are still speedy with Alpha 2.1.

Dale Crawford
Instructional Media Designer
Universal Remote Control, Inc.
I'm a member of the Remote Central community, just like you! My comments here are my own, and in no way express the opinions, policies, or plans of Universal Remote Control, Inc.
Post 12 made on Sunday January 14, 2007 at 14:04
Audiophiliac
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Thanks Dale. I had used the 2.0 template. I just got 2.1 and am rebuilding the remote so I can compare. I see what you mean about breaking up the backgrounds into small elements. Should work beautifully. And the new purple buttons are cool. :)
"When I eat, it is the food that is scared." - Ron Swanson
Post 13 made on Sunday January 14, 2007 at 14:11
Darnitol
Universal Remote Control Inc.
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Thanks, Audio.

The whole goal of the Alpha template was to make it faster to program the 3000 than with any other template, but at the same time make it easy to totally change the look of the template by swapping out the background images. Once an installer has the template configured for their most common configurations, they can use those files as templates and just swap out the backgrounds to give the entire remote a whole new look.

We're constantly working on ways to improve the templates. And of course, we're keeping an eye on the future with the changes we make today.

I hope you enjoy the template!

Dale
I'm a member of the Remote Central community, just like you! My comments here are my own, and in no way express the opinions, policies, or plans of Universal Remote Control, Inc.


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