Flash/photoshop integration and optimisation

howdy everybody,

I’m reletively new to flash web development, and my learning has been rather skatty! Using the functions of flash is not a problem. I am currently attempting to produce graphics in Photoshop, and animate them in flash. I have searched countless tutorials regarding this. My problem is this…

After importing several JPEG, GIF, or PNG images, the frame rate of the movie suffers drastically.The file size of the SWF is not a problem, this has been compressed quite significantly (40Kb), but the frame rate stil drops to 3 or 4 fps.

Even breaking the file into multiple SWFs does not help!

Why can i not perform this seemingly simple task, when sites like this (http://www.whoswestudios.com/flashsite.html) can produce stupidly advanced graphics on the web. Am i breaking some basic rule that i may have overlooked while learning.

if anyone could enlighten me regarding this, or just post a link to a relevant tutorial, i would be extremely grateful as it is sending me insane!..

Thanks in advance to anyone who replies


p.s my computer is a P4 2.4 GHz, so it aint the CPU.

What size is your stage set to on your animation?

Have you made sure that your FPS in the property inspector isn’t set to the default 12? You mentioned nothing about changing it, so since your PC and your SWF’s size are not the cause, I’d check that. :wink:

hello again,

firstly, my stage is set to 800 px by 600 px, not massive.

secondly, i would like to push the frame rate as high as possible, and have tried upto 30 fps. Regardless of changing the frame rate (up or down), it still slows down drastically. Could this be a problem caused by having several jpegs being animated at the same time? Although, even if the other jpegs/gifs are not being animated, the frame rate drops just by the addition of a new JPEG onto the stage.

just so you know, im working with about 6 jpegs/gifs approximately 20 - 50 kbs, and compressing the movie upon export.

back to the first point, does the movie size alter the capability of flash that much?

thanks again


Well in Flash terms, 800 x 600 is pretty massive. Things i’ve done that large have never run too well on anything. My guess is that’s your problem but i could be wrong.

cheers (err, alan? i guess)

ill try converting everything down to about 500 x 400, see how that gets on. If that doesnt work, i may well just take a hammer to my computer.

cheers again


file size isnt a huge factor in Flash slowdown. The killer is often a large amount of movement over a large area with a fairly large level of complexity.
Flash itself is not fast. It does, however, optimize screen refreshes by only redrawing portions of the screen that change. So if you have a small butterfly in the corner of a huge complex scene, you’ll probably be alright. However, chop the complexity of that scene in half and have a lot of movement all around and you’re in for some slowdown.

The smaller, the better. And with that the smaller and less complex, the better.

A lot of gradients and Transparency effects are often boggers too. Images in general aren;t necessarily bad, but animating a few at a time can have its damaging effects.

You may want to consider dropping the quality of the movie for image animations as bitmaps dont suffer as much from a low or medium quality setting as vector art does.

…and, increasing your framerate is not always the solution. It can actually make things slower (though in terms of animation and perception than actual fps).

once again, cheers for the reply.

i think i may have overdone the tweening and effects slightly, being unaware of the general speed of flash. My splash screen has the image animations overlapping, which sounds like this is the cause. i guess its back the drawing board and more tutorial pages.

cheers for the replies.


oh, are you using images with alpha transparency too? because that can hurt (goes along with the whole transparency effects thing).

yes i am, quite a lot.

In fact on pretty much most of the animations to some extent. does this effect the processing during only alpha transitions, or will this cause a problem if, say, an image was constantly at 30% alpha? ive reduced the amount of transitions and already the performance has improved, so thanks for the help so far.