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Tutorial: An Easy to Import Superstar .sup files into S5 Sequencer

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I talked with Brian (from Superstar) tonight about an another issue. During our conversation, he mentioned some things that tickled my brain that I had not thought of before. Maybe some of you know this, I didn't and for me it's a game changer.

Background: Some of us had concerns over how to import/insert our saved Superstar files into S5 Sequencer. Most people I know about are saving the Superstar files as a Legacy .lms file, then loading that into S5 Sequencer and copy/pasting into the main sequence.

S5.08 currently has issue with copy/paste in that it takes a looooong time to do this.

So for those of us who wanted to still sequence in mainly Superstar but still take advantage of the features in S5 Sequencer, this works well.

I can't/don't take credit for discovering this, like I said Brian tickled my brain and it got me to try this, and it worked! :) One very nice thing that is a result of this, is that it keeps the overall file size much, much smaller than copy/pasting did. I don't have any numbers to compare because quite frankly I got tired of waiting for the copy/paste to finish.

Give this a try and see what you think. I'm stoked, this is huge for me. :)

The video show an easy, quick and painless way to import you whole .sup file into S5 Sequencer.

Alan...

 

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Maybe I’m missing something here. When operating in the S5 environment, isn’t “Insert SuperStar Effects” the normal way of adding SuperStar sequencing?  The only thing different here is opening a pre-existing sequence within SuperStar. 

 

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14 hours ago, k6ccc said:

Maybe I’m missing something here. When operating in the S5 environment, isn’t “Insert SuperStar Effects” the normal way of adding SuperStar sequencing?  The only thing different here is opening a pre-existing sequence within SuperStar.

Yes, but that in and of itself is huge for me at least. Maybe people have known this all along, I did not. So when I tried this and realized it could be done this way, it makes it so much easier, and faster to import SS in S5. The only way I knew how to do this before was to copy and paste within S5. This is problematic when copying a prop with 2,400 channels. Currently S5.08's copy/paste routines are buggered to the point it is painful to use. It takes a long time. For instance in the example below it would take me well over an hour (if I was lucky) to copy paste the .lms file into S5. Realistically I could only copy around 150 channels at a time, or I ran the risk of S5 locking up or me falling asleep at the keyboard waiting for it to finish. :blink: If I made a mistake and tried to Undo, that added even more time. This way copies the entire prop and sequence that was created in SS, in about 10 seconds. This means all the SS .sup files I have, can be imported and converted to S5 format and by adding another Motion Effect Channel, I can add even more effects to the same sequence and prop using S5. That is what I have been looking for along.

One thing I did notice tonight while doing this for some other sequences, is that immediately after importing a .sup file during playback the sequence was sluggish. A quick save, close, and reload and everything played as it should. That tells me S5.08 still has memory issues, which I'm sure LOR is aware of.

Here is a screenshot that really tells the story.

suptos5_1.png

Intro Matrix.sup - is the Superstar sequence, saved from Superstar.
Intro Matrix_sup.lms - is the Superstar sequence Exported as Legacy file. (note how big it got, this is the file that would be needed to copy/pasted into S5)

*Edit*
Intro.loredit - is the S5 sequence saved after importing using this method, again note the file size. This the file that Show Editor loads and creates a Compressed file from. *Should have read*, This the S5 Edit file and used to create the .play file.

The .lcs (compressed) file is the file that actually plays the show. So the actual .play file would be smaller still.

What I am not showing you here, is the file size that would be if I were to copy/pasted the Intro Matrix.sup.lms (legacy) into S5. The reason I didn't show it, is that I have much better things to do with my time than to wait on the results of copy/paste, when this way is so much quicker and painless. :)

Another benefit, I think, is that if I decide to change the .sup file. I can change it in SS, then re-import in a matter of seconds back into S5.

I thought, this was one of the things you were looking for in S5 also, hence the excited PM to tell you about this. :P

Alan...

Edited by default
Corrected Mistake

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Hey,

It works great, if you do select row you have the whole row in 1 time.
But I have another problem now.
In the meantime, you need to create an additional effect row.
But if I import a file from SS now.
And another effect row wants to have another effect is going well.
But then 2 effect rows collapse. if I then delete some of the imported effect, the timing is no longer correct.
He seems to shift everything backwards.

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After you import a SS sequence into SE, you cannot change/alter it in SE. If you wanted to change the SS sequence, you would have to delete it from SE, load the .sup file into SS, make your changes, save and import into SE again.

If you add more Motion effects Rows, you can edit those effects

Alan...

Edit: Matt corrected my mistake below.

 

 

 

Edited by default

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10 minutes ago, default said:

After you import a SS sequence into SE, you cannot change/alter it in SE.

*Any* effect in the S5 Sequencer can be edited by double-clicking on it. This includes SS effects - even if it is the entire length of the sequence.

Matt

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I have rgb lights that that go along my fence and roof line.  I have each string as a separate row in my S5 preview.  When i import the sequence from superstar as instructed above, nothing happens.  If i add motion effects they work fine.  I know i am missing something but I just cant see it.  Do i Have to make all of my seven lines into a group and then import?  

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Frank,

If you are importing already existing sequences you made in S4 Superstar (using visualization files) then your S5 Preview must match exactly your visualization files (grid layout) when Superstar opens after you click "Insert Superstar Effect from S5. If this sounds confusing watch the video in the link below starting at about the 3:00 minute mark. It shows why the grid layout must match.

If this doesn't help, post again.

Alan...

 

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Alan,

Thanks for replying, I didn't see a link to the video.  I can understand why they have to match, I just can't figure out how to make it match.  Last night I had the preview in superstar match the preview in S5 but the grid didn't match so it didn't work.  and now i can't get back to that point. Please post the link that you mentioned and maybe it will help me figure out how to make the grid match the previews. thanks again

 

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I'm sorry, I completely forgot to add the link. :blink:

Are you trying to import 1 prop or multiple props?

Alan...

 

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So where do we stand with creating a "visualizer like" file out of the S5 Preview, and then importing into Superstar like the S4 version? I was hoping the S5.0.18 release would enable this function, and perhaps I am missing that functionality, but a quick check this morning doesn't appear to include this feature. Somewhere along the line I thought the .18 release was to enlarge matrix size in Superstar beyond 64 rows; provide pre-define props for S5 preview and "share" with Superstar; and enable visualization files to be created from an S5 Preview and imported/consumed by Superstar like the S4 release. There are no release notes that I see with .18 at this time. 

It's a good thing I have cut my expectations of myself in half for this year, so I don't make myself go crazy.

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On 3/3/2018 at 9:55 AM, mwilson6192 said:

So where do we stand with creating a "visualizer like" file out of the S5 Preview, and then importing into Superstar like the S4 version? I was hoping the S5.0.18 release would enable this function, and perhaps I am missing that functionality, but a quick check this morning doesn't appear to include this feature. Somewhere along the line I thought the .18 release was to enlarge matrix size in Superstar beyond 64 rows; provide pre-define props for S5 preview and "share" with Superstar; and enable visualization files to be created from an S5 Preview and imported/consumed by Superstar like the S4 release. There are no release notes that I see with .18 at this time. 

It's a good thing I have cut my expectations of myself in half for this year, so I don't make myself go crazy.

There is no plan to create a "visualizer like" file out of the S5 Preview. We continue to refine and improve the method shown by @default in the video above. Using the method shown, there is no importing or exporting required.

Matt

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1 hour ago, MattBrown said:

There is no plan to create a "visualizer like" file out of the S5 Preview. We continue to refine and improve the method shown by @default in the video above. Using the method shown, there is no importing or exporting required.

Matt

Thank you for providing that information. I will have to study the method outlined by @default and become one with it.

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On 3/3/2018 at 9:55 AM, mwilson6192 said:

There are no release notes that I see with .18 at this time.

Release notes for 5.0.18 are now available:

Matt

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Alan,  thanks for the video that did explain a lot but I still have not resolved my issue.  I have added my prop to the preview from a visualization file and then created a group with all of those props.  Then I insert the preview group into the S5 sequence.  If i try to add the superstar effect at this point i only get the first prop.  So then i add a motion effect row.  (At the top it says 50 X 11) then when i try to import the superstar sequence I get the attached S5 assigned grid which does not match my grid.  The main reason for this i think is that i have seven DMX CCRs.  The first one is broken down into two arches, the second one is broken down into two arches.  the third is one element, the fourth is one element, the fifth is one element, the sixth is broken down into two elements and the 7th is broken down into two elements.  So instead of saying 50 X 11 in the motion effect dialogue box it should say - 50 X 4,150 X 3 and 50 X 4.    I have about 10 sequences all in superstar and i don't really want to recreate them all on a new grid but i am begginning to worry.  Everything does seem to work properly with motion effects and the other S5 stuff - it's just these grids i cant get to match. Any help you can give would be appreciated.

S5 created grid.png

My grid.png

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Frank,

I'll pm you my email address. Could you send me a copy of your visualization file you use in Superstar? and a copy of your .lpeprop you're using in S5? (should be in the Light-O-Rama/ImportExport directory)

Depending on how you have your props setup in the Visualizer file, it maybe easier to setup a Preview where you could create just the arches and when you Insert Superstar Effects, you could have a second copy of SS open and copy paste the arches effects from your original .sup (SS file) to the copy of SS opened from S5.

Your props  work with S5, because if you have them setup properly (Unit id's) they will get the signals they need, the trick is to somehow figure out how to create props in S5 so you can Insert Superstar Effects from an existing SS .sup file so you don't have to recreate all the effects. It may have to be done in steps (one prop at a time) which is at least better that staring over.

Alan...

 

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One of my concerns about this is that for several reasons, I have my SuperStar grid layout set in horizontal mode.  That means that on the sequencing grid, the top of my pixel tree is to the left.  When using "Insert SuperStar Effects" from S5, the tree is vertical.  I did not think that would be a problem because of the way that SuperStar saves the data (yes, I have looked at the data files), but that theory was untested.  One of the changes for 2018 is that my pixel tree is changing from 12 x 50 to 24 x 100, so the first part of my 2018 conversion is to redo the pixel tree in SuperStar.  This was done by creating a visualization in 4.3.26 that has the tree expanded.  Then using the resizeing tools in SuperStar, convert the tree to it's new larger size.  Part two was to use Alan's method to import into S5, and then part 3 will be to add new stuff that will be done entirely in S5.  Part two was the concern because of the horizontal to vertical transition.

I am happy to report that converting my horizontal laid out tree into S5 based vertical tree worked perfectly - whew!

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I encountered a new problem importing and SS sequence into superstar.  (I have done six successfully)The import failed because of an unexpected token Line 54783.  I have attached a screen shot.  I assume that this means there is a problem with the sequence.  I created a new SS sequence and copied all of the effects and got the same line number.  I then deleted a couple of effects and the line number changed.  I have deleted effects at the beginning, middle and end of the sequence in the hope that this would help me find which effect was bad.  But nothing made any sense.  Has anybody seen this?  Can anyone suggest a way to find the bad effect.  I guess tomorrow I will delete one effect at a time and see what happens.

5ab84c2be4d1f_Unexpectedtoken.png.9f0c7c72731c72559950e197135dd14a.png

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Open up the .sup file with a text editor that will give line numbers and see what's on that line.  At least that's what I would do.  That does depend on being able to read the .sup files.

 

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I did open up the file with word and there were 1070 pages so I gave up on that.  So I deleted every effect and the fault still came up.  The problem turned out to be a image that I was using with an image action.  So even when i deleted the image action, the image was still attached to the sequence and caused the problem.  I deleted the image action and then the image in the original file and the import worked fine.  I will have to redo that small section of the sequence but no big deal.  Thanks for your help. 

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Please attach the .sup file to a message, or email it to brian@superstarlights.com and I will look into it.

 -Brian Bruderer

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Frank, thanks for sending the .sup file. It turns out the problem was in the name of the image. The name of the last two images was "R&W Fence one foot" and "R&W Fence one foot right". When storing those names into the xml file that is sent back to the Sequencer the "&" character needs to be encoded and superstar was not encoding the "&" character.

The fix will be in the next release, but until the next release the workaround would be to rename the images to not have the "&" character in them.

 

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Brian,  Thanks for figuring that out.  I will just avoid the & symbol.  I remember way back when DOS didn't like special characters in file names.

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