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Media Framework. Please.

Hi Unrealers,

As of 4.7.5, Video support via Media Framework is still buggy. Under Windows we have no sound. Under OSX we cannot even stop, rewind and restart a video, no seek capabilities are exposed.

Video support via Media Framework was announced in 4.5.

This is embarrassing.

More than two years ago, I made a demo with NDK - the free version of Unreal Engine 3 - which was heavily based on 360 videos and Oculus. It worked like a charm, in a week or so. Yes, yes, clumsy, video proprietary solution, UE4 stands to UE3 like a Tesla to a Ford Model T. True. But it worked like a charm.

I begin to feel discouraged. In my company we WANT to use UE4, which is probably the best piece of software I have ever seen (I am a 30+ years experienced developer, mostly C++) but the product line we have in mind is based on video content.

Hoping to see some evolution, I thank you for your work... on the other components of UE4 :)

Aaron Brancotti/Babele Dunnit

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asked Apr 10 '15 at 08:01 AM in Bug Reports

avatar image

Babele Dunnit
46 2 5 7

avatar image Babele Dunnit Mar 10 '16 at 08:49 AM

Hi All,

I just discovered something... embarrassing. Talking about UE4 under OsX, But I suspect the same for UE4 under Windows.

Once upon a time, I was used to import video just, in fact, importing it :) , as described in the Media Framework Guide. Dragging and dropping, or just selecting it from the file picker etc. At some point this mechanism broke, and right now, if you try doing that with 4.9, 4.10, 4.11 beta, you you will not be able to play a video file any more from the UE4 media player. It will not expose any video or audio track and the play button will be disabled. I interpreted this as a serious bug, breaking all the Media Framework. But yesterday, by chance, I opened a 4.8 scenario of mine, where videos are used, with UE 4.9... and it worked. My mind boggled a little, and then I discovered that, if you PUT YOUR VIDEO FILE IN THE CONTENT/MOVIES FOLDER BEFORE IMPORTING IT, it will work.

Moreover, putting the file there and THEN launching UE4 will automatically import and create a WORKING .uasset file.

I knew it is mandatory to put videos in the /content/movies folder for correctly packing a scenario, but I did not imagine it is mandatory to put them there to make them work at all...

Please, VERIFY THIS BEHAVIOUR and EXPLICITLY STATE IT IN THE MEDIA FRAMEWORK DOCUMENTATION :)

Thank you again for your IMPRESSIVE work on UE4. I hope this message can be useful for UE4 devs and community.

Later, Aaron

avatar image AndrewHurley Mar 10 '16 at 07:46 PM

We are working on improving the Media Framework and its compatibility across multiple platforms. I just tested the drag and drop as well as the issue you are reporting on the Mac here, and had no trouble getting the video to playback.

Could you please provide some clear and concise reproducible steps so I can get this issue to appear on my end in the most recent engine release 4.11 Preview 7?

Once I have those steps, I can work backwards to see when it was introduced, and if it is a regression from the original behavior.

Thank you,

Andrew Hurley

avatar image Babele Dunnit Mar 14 '16 at 11:06 AM

Hi Andrew, sure:

1) from the launcher, launch 4.11 prev7

2) from the project browser, create new project. Blueprint kind, blank project, desktop/console, maximum quality, no starter content. Call it "TestVideo411". place it at default position under Document/Unreal Projects/

3) Wait for the engine to start, then from the content browser, click "import"

4) from the finder file browser, navigate to desktop. Import your video from there. I am importing the "MediaExample.mp4" video I copied there from your latest ContentExamples/Movies folder.

5) A Media Example asset is created. double click it. The media player opens, and the play button is disabled. no video/audio tracks available.

Drag/drop also does not seem to work. I mean that no drop action gets executed.

Putting the video file anywhere inside the /Content folder of the active project will immediately import it and create a working asset.

this procedure works perfectly in 4.8.3 on my end

and is broken since 4.9.2. In 4.9.2 it also crashed.

I am on a MacBook Pro late 2014, I7, 16 GB, double graphic card, latest El Capitan OsX, no particular issues to signal on this machine.

Hope it helps and again, thanks for your awesome work.

later, Aaron

avatar image AndrewHurley Mar 14 '16 at 02:27 PM

Hey Aaron,

There are known issues with video certain video file formats such as .mp4 that sometimes have trouble with playback in the editor. This is stated in our documentation of the Media Framework itself, which you can find below.

Media Framework

https://docs.unrealengine.com/latest/INT/Engine/MediaFramework/

You can try a different format other than such as H.264 encoded .mp4 files to see if that resolves the issue. We made some changes to the Media Framework in 4.9.2 that caused some issues which have been resolved in upcoming releases.

I noticed the video you mentioned is not within the Content Examples of 4.10.4, which probably means we removed it because it was causing compatibility issues and crashes like the one you are experiencing. Try changing the video format to something different to see if that changes your outcome.

Cheers,

Andrew Hurley

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Hey Babele Dunnit,

The reason the Media Framework does not function comparable to that of UDK is because we licensed the media software to integrate within the engine. In other words, we had to pay to have the media framework implemented. Now since Unreal Engine 4 is free, we have to create our own framework from the ground up, which is the stage we are currently on.

If you have a look at the media framework documentation, it mentions this asset is not fully production ready and has compatibility issues. If you are really adamant about getting media files to play without issues you could technically buy the media framework we used in UDK, and create a plugin or use the source code for a GitHub pull request.

Media Framework

https://docs.unrealengine.com/latest/INT/Engine/MediaFramework/index.html

Bink Video

http://www.radgametools.com/bnkmain.htm

With that in mind there are workarounds and certain formats in which the media framework can be more reliable, and give your greater control over the playback. If you have any further questions or concerns, or if you need assistance with a specific issue please let us know.

Thanks,

Andrew Hurley

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answered Apr 10 '15 at 01:51 PM

avatar image Babele Dunnit Apr 13 '15 at 12:16 PM

Yes, Andrew, I know everything.

I know that BINK was proprietary, that UMF is stated to be not production ready, that I could put my hands in the mud and write the SW myself - which I will NOT do because I know well what a hassle is all that codec stuff, and I simply have no time - and so on... (just a little remark: UE4 is NOW free, it wasn't when we started to use it... nonetheless, I agree with you, the cost was anyway a steal for such an impressive product).

What I was really saying - even if in a rough manner, I admit - is that UMF is QUITE NEAR to be usable, at least under Windows: the only open issue seems to be the audio not working on the Windows platform. Everything else works, at least for my limited needs. And it is like that since many, many months. I believe that WMV support is very near to be usable, and - even if we do not love that format (does anybody? :) ) - a working format would be better than any workaround. So, I am just sayin' "c'mon, give it a push, crush it and check it 'done' on Redmine!"

Coming to formats, it would also be useful to know and state in the documentation you link which are those "certain formats" which - while UMF is still not prduction-ready - can be more reliable. I have lost hours trying combinations of audio and video codecs, formats, sample rates and so on, both on Windows and on OsX platforms, and I was unable to find a fully audio/video working combination.

I thank you very much and renew my admiration for Epic work,

Aaron Brancotti / Babele Dunnit

avatar image AndrewHurley Apr 13 '15 at 01:42 PM

Hey again Aaron,

Thank you for the valuable feedback. I have forwarded some of your concerns to the developers and they will take what you have said about the Media Framework into consideration.

Regards,

Andrew Hurley

avatar image Babele Dunnit Mar 03 '16 at 03:31 PM

Ping!

Any news? Soon 3D cameras will hit the market and UE4 will be a powerhorse for A New Kind Of Cinema... c'mon, don't sit movieless :)

Later, Aaron

avatar image pyropace Mar 03 '16 at 03:36 PM

Great discussion,

Any news on this guys ?

Thanks

avatar image Robin.UltraUltra Mar 09 '16 at 09:43 AM

I am also interested in hearing more on this issue

Thanks

avatar image Robin.UltraUltra Mar 11 '16 at 08:16 AM

My main concern with the media framework right now is the possibility to have audio that works reliably and is synced with video at all times, even in cases as for example when a user alt+tabs the window.

Also it would be nice to get some documentation like you have for sound assets with which formats+codecs are supported and what you recommend to use with the media framework.

Thanks for looking into it :)

avatar image pyropace Mar 14 '16 at 04:30 PM

@AndrewHurley is VLC an option ? ... it works on all platforms

https://wiki.videolan.org/Compile_VLC/

avatar image AndrewHurley Mar 14 '16 at 05:04 PM

This has been suggested as an implemented plugin/feature, and we are still working on improving the current Media Framework as well. Thank you for your suggestions, but at this time the media framework is still not a super high priority at this time.

Thank you,

Andrew Hurley

avatar image agirnth Jun 26 '16 at 09:24 PM

Hello Andrew,

Aaron is right, don't sit movieless...

avatar image Jerry23 Aug 03 '16 at 03:54 PM

looks like 4.13 will have much better Media Framework, but I have a question about 3D videos in VR mode, are you going to add these soon?

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